Benefits of Kettlebell Workouts

Kettlebell Workouts For Busy Women : Benefits of Kettlebell Workouts

More women are discovering the benefits of kettlebell workouts. Numerous reasons are there why kettlebells are the perfect choice for those who want to tone their bodies and remove body fat. While men are drawn to resistance based training using weight training machines, dumbbells, and barbells, women tend to avoid the weight section, opting for aerobic exercises like running, Zumba style dance classes and spin classes. But there are a lot of reasons women should spend time performing resistance style workouts and using the kettlebell.

Benefits of Kettlebell Workouts

Kettlebell Workouts
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#1 Tones the Body

Effective and efficient kettlebell workouts for ladies need to be dynamic and cardiovascular in nature. While the resistance element of kettlebell training is in place, it does not cause a lot of muscle growth or hypertrophy. Therefore, women who want to add muscle tone without adding bulk can choose kettlebell workouts. Women have 100X times less testosterone than men, so putting on muscles is virtually impossible.

#2 Full Body Workouts

Kettlebell workouts offer full body movements. If you have received the correct workout instructions, full compound movements are there to target each body muscle. The more muscles are targeted, the greater is the energy required and the more fat will be burned. Kettlebell workouts target a lot of muscles in one go, so time is not wasted to target different areas of the human body on an individual basis. Full-body workouts are hard to start with, using lots of energy and tiring at the same time. But, the end result is that kettlebell workouts are time efficient. Using the correct kettlebell exercises are important. Kettlebells are not the same as dumbbells. If correct exercises are used, workouts are only needed 15 minutes in a single day.

#3 Kettlebells target all parts of the body

Kettlebells reduce fat in the hips, thighs, glutes, and waist. Targeting the really important muscles are important. Larger muscles include quads, glutes and hips are targeted. It increases the metabolic rate. More muscle tone in the body leads to the higher energy required by muscles at rest, and fat can be burnt every day.

Kettlebell exercises like the swing hit important muscle groups in a single fluid movement. It also ramps up the metabolic rate.

#4 Exciting Dimensions in a Fitness Routine

While most people enjoy exercise, kettlebells offer a new dimension to the fitness routine. Training correctly with kettlebells takes a lot of skills, dedication and time. Women can enjoy a fitness-boosting workout.

Using the Right Kettlebell Weights

One of the biggest misconceptions is that women should use 3lb weights to prevent bulking up. Women have less growth hormone, so bulking up is not an issue. When kettlebell exercises are correctly performed, the entire body is used. Drive with the hips and legs to burn many calories and use hundreds of muscles in one go. Lift heavier weights to activate different muscles.

The starting weight should be 8 kgs or 15 lbs. For athletic women, within a span of 6 weeks, the transition is made to 12 kg or 25 lbs. This is more so for two-handed swings. For stronger women, the weight should be around 16 kgs or 35 lbs.

Kettlebell Exercises

Kettlebell Weights Set
Source: Amazon.com

#1 Kettlebell Single Arm Deadlifts

The muscles used in the single arm deadlifts include the back, core, hips, quads, hamstrings, and glutes. This is one exercise all women should focus on. Single arm deadlifts send the focus onto the body's back and into the glutes. For strong and well-shaped glutes, this is the right exercise to work on. The single arm deadlift raises the heart rate and also burns plenty of calories. Once the technique is mastered, you can increase the weight.

#2 Kettlebell Single Leg Deadlifts

The muscles used are the glutes, hamstrings, front and back core and the hips. The body connects the hips and legs with the arms and shoulders through the core muscles. The single leg deadlift works to connect to the core muscles, linking the shoulder with the opposite hip through the cross body sling system. Mastering a single leg deadlift provides a stunning torso and protects the spine from additional exercise injury. It conditions the glutes, hips, and hamstrings too.

#3 Kettlebell Swing

The muscles used are hips, quads, back, core, glutes, and hamstrings. Once the above deadlifts are mastered, kettlebell swings become the leading fat burning exercise. Kettlebell swings hit as many as six hundred muscles in the human body. They also provide cardiovascular benefits. Boost cardio, strength, and exercises into one.

#4 Kettlebell Turkish Get Up

The muscles used are hamstrings, glutes, quads, core, triceps, and hips. The Turkish get up is an exercise that works the entire body and goes deep into core muscles, apart from improving joint mobility. If there is stiffness or tightness, the getup exercise can help.

#5 Kettlebell Row

Kettlebell Row
Photo by: Amazon

Making rowing movements using the kettlebell exercises the glutes, hips, quads, core, back, shoulder, biceps, and hamstrings. The row is an exercise focusing on the rear and back of shoulders. Performing the standing row works out the core and the legs too. The rowing exercise helps to pull shoulders back and improve the appearance of the chest. This is great for counteracting the sitting we inevitably do each day.

#5 Kettlebell Squat and Press

There are not many muscles left untouched by the squat and press. The exercise can be performed with one hand and changed after some repetitions or two hands can also be used. This exercise uses muscles like the quads, core, triceps, hips, glutes, and hamstrings. One of the most critical things to watch out for is squatting deeply. The exercise involves working hard to get thighs at level with the floor. This activates the glutes.

#6 Kettlebell Side Lunge

The muscles used for this include the core, hips, quads, hamstrings, and glutes. These side lunges open up the hip and condition the legs and the backside. Deeper lunges are better. Start off steady and get working on deeper and deeper into the movement with each repetition.

#7 Push Ups

Kettlebell push-ups use the glutes, chest, core, and triceps. Men have a naturally bigger upper body. Women tend to avoid push-ups for this reason. For firming up the core, chest, and backs of the arms, kettlebell push-ups are perfect. If full push-ups are tougher, increase the elevation of the hands to the table. Once around 10 repetitions are performed, lower your hands to the bench and then the floor.

#8 The Russian-Kettlebell Swing

This exercise targets the back. hips, shoulders, glutes, and legs. For carrying out the perfect swinging motion, stand up straight, and place your feet wider apart than hip distance. Next, grab handles, with both the hands, with palms facing downwards  and arms ahead. Maintain a minor bend in the knee while driving hips back. Lower the body, though not too much. Following this, in a fluid and smooth, gentle motion, driving the hips forward, just swing the kettlebell. This keeps the core and glutes engaged. The motion has to be from the point of the hips and not the arm. As you return to the standing position, lower the weight in the width between the legs and keep the swinging motions on for twelve to fifteeen reps.

#9 A Single-Arm Kettlebell Swing

This exercise targets the shoulders, backs, glutes, hips, and legs. It is a beginner-intermediate exercise. The movement works like a 2-handed swing. Using a single hand at one time, the kettlebell should be swung. While one arm drives the momentum, the other one swings the kettlebell. When the kettlebell is located to the back of the legs, aim for alternating the sides with 10-20 reps for every side.

#10 A 2-Arm Kettlebell Row

This exercise targets the back, arms, and shoulders. Grab 2 kettlebells, one in each hand. Bending the knees slightly, place them in front of the feet. Bend to grab the 2 kettlebells and pull these towards the stomach. The elbows should be closer to the body and there should be a straightened back. The lower the volume of weights are, the more reps can be repeated.

#11 Kettlebell Figure of 8

This is an intermediate level exercise influencing arms, abs, and back. Stand with legs at hip-width distance. Lower yourself in a one-fourth quarter squat posture. The back needs to be kept straight and the chest upwards. Hold the kettlebell using the left hand and swing the kettlebell outside of the left leg and back. Next, pass the kettlebell to the other hand and swing this outside the right-leg and backward. Replicate a basketball drill.

#12 Kettlebell High Pull

The kettlebell high pulls targets glutes, backside, shoulders, arms and legs. For this exercise, point toes at 45-degrees with feet positioned wider than the width between the shoulders. Placing the kettlebell down between the legs on the ground and start to squat, keep the core body involved. Gripping the kettlebell in a one-handed grip is the next step. Using a force emanating from the hips, push the heels back to stand tall. The kettlebell needs to be kept upwards, as the elbows need to drive up. Lower down backwards and then switch arms and aim for 10-12 reps for each arm.

#13 A Kettlebell-Sumo High-Pull

The kettlebell activates back, legs, arms, and shoulders. Commence using the kettlebell positioned well between the legs, hip distance apart.Hold this handle with hips back and knees bent. Pulling the kettlebell to the shoulder-region, with straight knees and rising elbows is the next step. The force emanates from the hip of the body. The arms are pulled until the end. Keeping the core involved, shift the weight down back by ground repeating for 12 to 15 reps.

#14 A Kettlebell-Russian Twist

This kettlebell exercise targets abs and obliques. Sit and bend your legs hip distance apart. Feet need to be flat on the ground. Holding the kettlebell with two hands placed at the chest, lean forward, pointing your body to a forty-five-degree angle. Rotating the torso clockwise, twist the waist, swinging the kettlebell over the body.

#15 Kettlebell Windmill

This exercise targets abs, hips, obliques, shoulders and back. Holding the kettlebell using the right hand, the feet need to be angled 45-degrees from the arm on the right. Raising the kettlebell overhead, keeping the arm locked and watching the weight is essential. Keeping the shoulders in alignment, lift the weight on the right foot. Bend the waist,  keep the right arm overhead as bodies bend forward and the left arm pointed towards the ground. Lift back gradually, remaining in control. Around 6-8 reps need to be completed for each side.

#16 A Single-Armed Kettlebell-Floor Press

Single Arm Kettlebell Floor Press
Photo by: Amazon

This exercise targets the arms, core, and chest. Lie supine on the ground with legs straightened. Grab the kettlebell by the side with the palms facing inwards, pressing the weight while the wrist is rotated. Palms are facing the feet. Bringing the kettlebell back into starting positio, repeat for anywhere from six to eight reps.

#17 Kettlebell Slingshot

Use this exercise to target the abs, back, arms, obliques. To do this exercise, stand with your legs shoulder-width apart. Holding the kettlebell ahead of the body, arms need to be extended at the level of the chest. Swinging the kettlebell behind the back witha single hand, reach back to the opposite side and grab the kettlebell in the front. Continue round and round for 6-8 reps and then move in the other direction.

#18 A Side-Stepping Kettlebell Swing

This exercise targets muscles in the back, glutes, and leg. This movement is much like a kettlebell swing. Grip a kettlebell and commence with a 2-handed swing. When the kettlebell is down between the two legs, stepping the foot to the right. On the other hand, when the kettlebell is up, the left foot should be brought up to reach the right. Keep sidestepping your way rightwards and head back another way with the left leg.

#19 Kettlebell Clean

This exercise targets the back, butt, and legs. Commence with the kettlebell between the legs. Swing upwards, shrugging the shoulders, pulling the body and kettlebell up to the shoulders. The kettlebell should end in a rack position, positioned on forearms tucked close to the body. The fists should be at the chest. Bringing down the weight on the floor, repeat for 10 to 15 reps.

#20 Two-Armed Kettlebell Military Press

Opt for this exercise if you want to work out back, arm and shoulders. Hold onto two kettlebells and bring them to reach the rack position. Pressing the kettlebells up, ensure you are leaning at the waist so weights are stacked behind the head. Bring these to the shoulder and continue the preassure for anywhere between 10 and 20 reps based on the weights being pushed.

#21 Single-Armed Kettlebell Split Jerk

This exercise targets the shoulders, back, legs and chest. Start by aligning the kettlebell to the shoulder. Finish with the palm facing frontwards. Bend the knees and, while jumping, press the kettlebell to a split jerking position. Return to the straight posture while the kettlebell overhead. Lower an repeat the exercise. Shoot for 6-8 reps on both the sides.

#22 Single-Armed Kettlebell Snatch

This exercise targets the chest, back, and shoulder. Start with the kettlebell between the legs with bent knees. Move up onto the toe, stretching the kettlebell till it nears the chest with elbows tucked in. Keeping the weight overhead, bring it to the ground. Try for 6 to 8 reps of these.

#23 Kettlebell-Powered Plank With Row

This kettlebell exercise involves working out the muscles of the arms, abs, and back. Start in the plank position with hands grabbing the two kettlebell handle. Lifting a kettlebell, ensure it reaches the hip. Keep the elbows in and lower back downwards. Repeat with the other arm. Carry out 6-8 reps on every side.

#24 Kettlebell Half-Getting Up

This exercise uses the abs, back, and arms. Lie down on your back side with legs pointing outwards. Extending the right arm up, move with the kettlebell in hand. Bending the left sided knee, start rising with the lefthand arm propping up the body. Maintain a sitting posture all the way up and carefully return to the starting position. Repeat the exercise for between 8 and 10 reps per side.

Kettlebell Workouts

Piece Fitness HDPE Kettlebell Weights
Source: Amazon.com

Kettlebell workouts are very essential for toning the complete body. Kettlebells are essentially apparatus for weighted workouts resembling a small bowling ball for easy handling. Kettlebells can be at differing weights and much like dumbbells, their weights are free making them ideal in terms of portability and practicality for a wide range of workouts. These include cardio, flexibility and strength training. Kettlebell workouts are never boring because there is simply so much variety.

The format of the workout, however, depends on not just your fitness goals, but also your fitness experience or ability. Both experience and goals need to be clearly defined before formulating an effective workout program. Both elements should be considered keeping the frequency-intensity-time-type principle in mind to tailor a fitness program as per your needs.

#1 Total Kettlebell Workout

This workout targets as many muscle groups as possible, while moving the heart rate up to affect cardiovascular fitness. This is a 20 to 30-minute workout which includes the following:

A full warm-up to raise flexibility and prepare the body and the muscles for an awesome workout. These include planks, side planks, static stretches for quads, bridges, pecs, lats, hamstring and hip flexors.

The core workout includes pushups, some squats with variations such as lunges, squat splits, step-ups, kettlebell swings, and deadlifts.

Core stability exercises at this stage include planks, reverse ab curls, spiderman climbs, hip touches, mountain climbers and more. Traditional sit-ups and crunches are not needed.

Then, there's a strong finish where the focus is on Kettlebell swings.

#2 Kettlebell Cardio Workout

Kettlebell workouts can be used for high-intensity interval-training circuits. Combine the cardio intervals with kettlebell moves for a sculpted body to achieve a calorie burn up to 20 calories per minute and increase cardiovascular fitness too.

#3 Body Sculpting/Strength Training Kettlebell Workout

For this workout, try the swing targeting hamstring, shoulders, and glutes. Then comes the Clean to Rock targeting the biceps, thighs, and chest. The push press targets the shoulders, glutes, and quadriceps. This was followed by the chop lunge targeting the abs, glutes, and thighs. Then, there's a lateral lunge and bicep curl targeting the inner thighs, quadriceps, and biceps. Finally, there's the halo targeting the triceps. Each exercise is only repeated for 30 to 90 seconds.

#4 Kettlebell Flexibility Training Workout

For any workout program, flexibility is one of the most important aspects. This is a six-move stretching routine which combines with any kettlebell workout routine. You start with the Cobra, stretching your arms, abs, chest, and thighs using the kettlebell. The second version works out the chest, abs, and thighs. Then, there is a half bow pose stretching the chest, legs, and back. Additionally, the bow pose stretches and strengthens the back. The down dog split targets the hamstring, arms, back, and calves. The Down Dog split the second version is with a bent leg extension. This is a good workout for women to choose from.

Kettlebell enhances functional fitness by exercising major groups of muscles in unison. It boosts explosive strength and power. Additionally, there is muscular and cardiovascular endurance. Intense kettlebell workouts burn plenty of calories, burning at the rate of 20 calories per minute. This also strengthens and stabilizes the core vital muscles and works out the mid and lower back muscles which are often neglected.

Kettlebells are different from dumbbells or barbells. Their real advantage is that they can be used as a foundation for ballistic activities combining functional fitness, endurance and fat burning in one single exercise. Kettlebells make you seem like a bodybuilder. If one is interested in a toned, sleek look and supercharging fitness and cardio levels, this is an ideal tool for you.

Stance While Working Out With Kettlebells

Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. The weight should be on the heels and knees should stay in accordance with the toes. The point six feet ahead of a person needs to be focused on. Additionally, the back posture is also important. Those working out with kettlebells need to maintain a neutral spine position rather than over-flexing or overextending the spine. Pull back and downwards with the shoulders, placing equal pressure on both feet and draw the ribcage backward slightly.

Grip While Working Out With Kettlebells

For swings, make hook type connections between the hand and the kettlebell, while leaving thumbs free. Clean type movements are next in line. Wrap the index finger plus the thumb around its handle. Leave the rest of the grip looser to permit the bell to rotate. Wear tight-fitting clothes so that the natural movement is not impaired. Positioning the kettlebell ahead of you, ensure that feet are firmly set with heels pushing onto the floor.

Leading from the hips in every movement, squat down by pushing your hips back. Focus on snapping the hips by pushing the butt back. Creasing at the hip flexor, you need to sit back on your hips as far as possible, maintaining a vertical posture of the shins and moving the hips as far back as possible. In the upright position, abs need to be tight and braced. The quads are held tight.

Breathing While Using Kettlebells

Breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth is important. Additionally, you need to stay relaxed and breath evenly without lips pursing. Maintain tightness in the abs.

Workouts Using Kettlebells

Kettlebell for Strength
Source: Amazon.com

#1 Fat Loss

This workout functions to burn maximal calories in the shortest time period. It includes around 10 intervals spaced at 20 seconds and equaling a total of 40 seconds. The resistance suggested is an 8kg kettlebell.

Exercise #1- Alternating Kettlebell Swings

Swinging the kettlebell between the legs involves a partial squat motion. Maintaining the neutral spine posture completely is important. The hips need to be snapped as you come out of the squat to create momentum. Swing the kettlebell to shoulder height and alternate hands at the motion top.

Exercise #2- Crush Curl

To do this exercise, you need to squeeze the kettlebell on either side without gripping the handle. Use only the palm of your hands and not your finger to grip the kettlebell. Keeping elbows in at the side, curl the kettlebell up to the chest and back down again. You need to also keep your abs tense and maintain the tightness of the core.

Exercise #3- Clean and Press

Grab the kettlebell with a single hand. Squat down and power up and clean the kettlebell to shoulder height through the rack position. Perform a mini squat to provide momentum that drives the kettlebell overhead. The back needs to be kept straight at this time. Fluidity and seamlessness of the motion are important. Alternate this with your right and left side.

Exercise #4: Halo Triceps Extension

Grab and hold the kettlebell inverted, so the weight is above the hands, as it is held to a chest level. Bring the kettlebell around the head in a halo motion. Keeping the head in line with the body and looking ahead is important. Stop when the hands are behind the head, and placing the elbows in, perform the complete tricep extension, bringing the kettlebell in front of the chest on each revolution. Alternating directions back and forth are important.

Exercise #5 – Burpee Jacks

This combines a burpee with a high row. Start the burpee by kicking the feet back and dropping into a push-up posture, Jump back and grab the kettlebell. Stand up straight and row the kettlebell right up to the chin level. Drop it back down and move to the next burpee. Ensure a straight line is maintained with the body on the row.

Exercise #6- Toe Touch Crunch

Lie on the mat on your back with the knees up. Grab the kettlebell on the handle's side. Straighten the legs to form a 90-degree angle with the torso. Hold the kettlebell at arm's length pointing toward your toe. Perform a crunch by contracting the abs tightly, keeping the core tight even while dropping back on the floor. Crunch the hand to the toes as high as possible. Keeping the lungs open, ensure a smooth range of motion throughout.

Exercise #7: Lunge Drop and Row

This exercise combines the lunge and a one-armed row. Starting at a wide lunge posture, grab the kettlebell with your right leg. The right leg should be the back in the lunge position. Keeping the back in a straight line with the extended leg, the kettlebell needs to be rowed up towards the ribcage. The elbow needs to be at the side. As the kettlebell is lowered, a lunge needs to be performed simultaneously. Touch the rear knee right down to the ground. Then, alternate between the row and the lunge. Alternate between the left and the right side.

Exercise #8: Kettlebell Swing

Grab the kettlebell with a two-handed overhand grip. Keeping the spine neutral, begin the swing by causing the hips to snap to get the kettlebell going. Bring the kettlebell to a shoulder height. It should be at a 45-degree angle pointing away from the body. Keeping the lungs open, the core motion tight and the chest arched, move back.

#2 Intense Workout

This is a super-intense maintenance workout for those days when one is super busy and lacks the time for a 30-minute workout. Realizing that workout effectiveness does not rely on session length, but the intensity and consistency of training are important. This routine is excellent. Do wear wristbands while working out.

Exercise #1: Snatch with Kettlebell

Placing the kettlebell ahead of the body, take a wide stance and grab the kettlebell with one hand. Use an overhand grip. Begin by carrying out a one arm kettlebell swing. Bring up the kettlebell until it is almost overhead. Start bending the elbow slightly as the kettlebell is raised. Then punch the kettlebell overhead. This causes the bell to rotate and rest against the lower arm and wrist. Keeping the kettlebell in an overhead lockout position is important. Keep your wrist neutral and your hand open. Hold this for a few seconds and then bring the kettlebell back to the floor. This completes one repetition.

Exercise #2: Kick Through Push Ups

Start with the top push up position. Place your left foot up to your left hand. Kick through the right leg across and past the left foot. Then you need to return to the start position. The right foot should not touch the floor until it returns to the start position. Complete a full push up. Perform 4 reps on every side and alternate between the two sides. Go back to 5 snatches at one each side.

#3 Kettlebell Challenge

This is a challenging workout designed to fast-track the burning of calories while strengthening the core and enhancing functional fitness. This workout involves 5 rounds of a circuit comprising 5 exercises. Every exercise needs to be performed for 20 repetitions. The extra equipment needed apart from a kettlebell is a pull-up bar. If full pull-ups cannot be carried out, the chair or training partner is used to perform assisted pull-ups.

Exercise #1- Kettlebell Swing

Grabbing the kettlebell with a 2-handed overhand grip, keep the spine neutral and begin the swing by snapping hips and getting the kettlebell moving. Bring the kettlebell to shoulder height. At the high point, there should be a 45-degree angle, pointing away from the body. It is important to keep the lungs open, the core motion nice and tight and the chest and back arched.

Exercise #2- Spiderman Push Ups

Performing regular push-ups, bringing the knee to the elbow each time works best. Keep your hips flat.

Exercise #3- Goblet Swing Lunge

Grabbing the kettlebell on the side of the handles is the first step. Hold it up to the chest level. Then you need to step forward into a deep lunge. Bring the rear leg down till it touches the ground. Form a right angle between the front hip, knee, and ankle. Step back to a start position. Now opt for the rear lunge. Keeping the dumbbell at chest level, complete the reps required.

Exercise #4: Pull Ups

Grabbing the chinning bar with the underhand grip that is shoulder width, hang with the elbows slightly bent. Pull the chin up above the bar, hold this for a few seconds and then lower the body in a controlled way. For maximal contraction and stretch, you need to lower yourself to the bottom of every rep and pull up until the chin touches or goes above the bar. If one rep is impossible on the bar, try reverse push ups.

Exercise 5: Sumo Deadlift

Take a stance with your feet wider than shoulder width. The feet should be pointed outwards. Maintain a neutral spine as one bends down to grip the kettlebell with an overhand, 2-handed grip. Further, hinge the hips and push the butt back. Keeping abs tight, drive the thighs to lift the kettlebell as you stand upright. Once the kettlebell returns to the ground place it behind your heels. This prevents the back from rounding.

While working out, you need to consider age, nutrition quality, workout intensity, daily activity, genetics, and athletic experience too, besides gender. These impact workouts.

Conclusion

Kettlebell workouts are good for women and highly effective. Cardio based workouts involve resistance based workouts. Try the kettlebell pushups, side lunges, row, squat, press, swing, arm, and leg deadlift. Busy women want to work out, but feel their lives don't permit a one-hour gym session. Kettlebells could be the solution. Given the intensity of the workouts, the duration should be kept for around 15-20 minutes. Squeeze cardio, flexibility and strength training into the schedule. Building lean muscle raises resting metabolism and enables women to burn calories even while sitting down. Improve your strength without bulking, strengthen muscles from the head to toe, improve flexibility and posture beside decreasing body fat. Tone the tummy and bum and sculpt the arms.

Kettlebell decreases workout time by half, saves cash, offers a full-body workout and easy to carry. So what are you waiting for? Get ready to swing the kettlebell and work your way to fitness.

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