What does kettlebells offer?
Kettlebells offer you with more options that any other single piece of equipment can offer you in your training sessions.
If you take all of the equipment in most gyms, they rarely combine to provide what a kettlebell can. With that said, I don’t know of any serious kettlebell practitioner that doesn’t use other pieces of equipment.
One of the most common objections I hear to kettlebells is people who think they are too old or injured to train with a kettlebell. There is an assumption that kettlebell training is only for athletes, possibly because many average people have been coaxed into using them that way inappropriately. Other people assume that as they age machine based training is the safer way to train for strength but nothing could be further from the truth.
Truth, the older you get, the more functionally appropriate your exercise should be in order to keep you functioning properly. That is because kettlebell training mimics movements that are the basis of human physical interaction with the real world. Muscle isolation exercises and intense cardio sessions that are commonly performed in gyms are the specialized training designed for bodybuilders or endurance athletes. The art of strongman and all of the tools and exercises we use are about becoming more real world strong.
Kettlebell training builds core strength.
Kettlebell classes led to 70% more core strength than training without them. Every kettlebell movement engages your core to stabilize and you are therefore constantly getting a core workout. You will always use your biggest muscles to lift things; this starts with your core, gluts, hamstrings and quads which works outwards to the smaller muscles
Flexibility where you need it the most
Tightness in your hips is the biggest cause of back and other chronic pain due to improper posture and motor patterns. Kettlebell training is about gradually developing the flexibility in your hips and shoulders that will align your posture and rid you of joint pain. It also allows you to do other activities like running and cycling safely, as those exercises can make your hips tight
Kettlebell training teaches you how to lift with your legs and not with your back.
This is why this kind of practice becomes more appropriate as you age. After all, the functionality of your joints becomes far more important to you than the size of your muscles as you get older. Flexibility, balance, and stability are the key components of injury prevention and being able to move gracefully as you get older.
Build muscle and cardio together
Full body weight lifting requires a tremendous supply of oxygen to many working muscles, you can increase or decrease this effect based upon your goals and abilities. By moving from one exercise to another you can train higher cardio and by taking short breaks you can turn your training into high intensity session.
Unify your mind and your body
You will constantly be developing and fine tuning your motor patterns as you learn how to use your body more efficiently every time you practice with a kettlebell. Once you have mastered a particular lift, you can progress to a more challenging one, or simply move up in weight and continue to learn and grow. Strong person and kettlebell training requires total concentration if you want to advance your skill. This is something that muscle isolation exercises and long cardio sessions don’t do for you.
Develop strength evenly from one side of your body to the other.
Many exercises will allow you to develop a greater amount of strength on one side of your body than the other, kettlebell training develops you evenly. As we age we will usually see a bigger variance in our range of motion (and therefore strength) from one side of the body to the other. One hip or one shoulder becomes much tighter than the other causing various compensations in your movement. This ultimately leads to chronic pain and a diminished quality of life. Kettlebell training will prevent this, and can go a long way to help reverse it if it has already begun.
Functional weight lifting is something that you will learn and continue to improve with every practice. You must experience kettlebell training to fully understand the benefits it can provide.
If you feel intimated by them, you are not alone. Kettlebells look a lot scarier than they actually are. If you follow the basic exercises like the Deadlift, the swing, the clean press and the snatch you will see some great results sooner than later.
South West Krav Maga – Swindon