Kettlebell Workouts for Beginners Series
Guest Post by Amanda Perkins from Kettlebell King, who created this fantastic kettlebell workout article for beginners that consists of 6 different exercises with a video attached to explain each of them. Read their Bio below. Please welcome Amanda. PS. check out their awesome adjustable kettlebells!
This workout is designed to engage stabilizer muscles as well as major muscle groups and increase power, flexibility, and endurance.
Stabilizers are muscles that hold your parts in place and prevent you from being damaged while the movers are moving you. According to the American Council on Exercise, “Stabilizing muscle contractions are generally isometric contractions that act to support the trunk, limit movement in a joint, or control balance.”
The following six exercises develop the chest and arms, core, and legs. The result is a foundation of strength to prepare for more intense workouts in the future. As always, be mindful of form and drop weight to avoid risk of injury.
If you are just starting out with kettlebells, we recommend women use a 6-8 kg (13-18 lbs.) kettlebell and men use a 10-12 kg (22-26 lbs.) kettlebell. If you have prior experience or feel more comfortable adding weight, do so as long as you can maintain proper form.
Each circuit will consist of 10-12 reps per exercise with little to no rest period between exercises. At the end of each circuit, rest for 60-90 seconds. The goal of this workout is to complete three circuits.
As you build endurance, try your hand at five circuits. If you find you’re performing these exercises in five circuits with only minimal strain, we recommend adding weight as a way to progress the workout.
Primary muscles: Pecs, Deltoids, Triceps, Abdominals
- Position yourself in a traditional push-up position, grasping a kettlebell handle in each hand. The kettlebells should be positioned directly under the shoulders.
- Lower your chest down as far as you can go that you can still push yourself back up. The body should move as one unit, with the core engaged and legs tight.
- Push yourself back up into the starting position.
Watch the Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=86f4CEj6h8Q
Kettlebell Russian Twist
Primary muscles: Rectus abdominis, Obliques
- Sit on the floor holding the kettlebell by the horns of the handle at chest height.
- Raise your feet off the floor, then lower the kettlebell down to one side by twisting your torso.
- Raise the kettlebell up and over to the opposite side, twisting your torso to the other side.
- Alternate twisting from side to side each rep. This exercise can be modified by keeping your feet on the floor.
Watch the Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NkvlNISNj44
Kettlebell Clean and Press
Primary muscles: Quadriceps, Glutes, Hamstrings, Abdominals, Chest, Traps, Upper Back
- Stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Place two kettlebells of equal weight between your feet.
- Hinge at the hips, keeping your spine neutral, and grasp a kettlebell in each hand.
- Swing the kettlebells back between your legs and then explosively extend the hips as you contract the glutes and brace the core. Just above hip level, direct the kettlebells into the rack position. Make sure to open the hands and insert them fully so the kettlebell handles lay diagonal across your palms.
- Engage the lat muscles and press the kettlebells overhead, fully straightening the arms. The weight of the kettlebells should be stacked over the joints (elbow, shoulder, hip). The elbows should go straight up during the press, not out and around the sides of the body.
- Bring the kettlebells back to the rack position. Drop them back down into the swing, giving the kettlebells a slight head start before following with the torso.
Watch the Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9hho-oLVeU
Kettlebell Goblet Squat
Primary muscles: Glutes, Hamstrings, Quadriceps
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart with both hands holding one side of the kettlebell handle at chest level.
- Keep your spine neutral and your core braced as you lower yourself into a squatting position.
- Determine the depth of your squat by bringing your elbows to the inside of the knees.
- Return to the starting position by pushing the floor and contracting the glutes to fully extend the hips.
Watch the Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FhRe8s4HisA
Kettlebell Squat to Press
Primary muscles: Glutes, Quadriceps, Abdominals, Triceps, Shoulders, Chest
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and a kettlebell in each hand. Each kettlebell should rest in the V of your shoulder, elbow, and hand. The hands should be fully inserted, so the kettlebell handles are diagonal across the palms.
- Keep your spine neutral and your core braced as you lower yourself into a squatting position. Squat down until the thighs are parallel to the ground or the hips drop slightly below parallel.
- Drive out of the squat back to a standing position. In the same fluid motion, press your arms up and overhead with arms completely straight. Your elbows should be outside your ears on either side of your head, with the shoulders pulled down and away from ears.
- Maintaining control, bring the kettlebells back to rack position as you move back into a squat to repeat the exercise.
Watch the Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-dN2hQw_8Y
Primary Muscles: All of them!
- Stand with a kettlebell on the outside of each foot. The kettlebells should be of equal weight and heavier than what you would use for most other exercises.
- Keeping your spine neutral, hinge at the hips to grasp the kettlebell handles.
- Push back to the upright position while keeping your abs braced.
- Walk with the kettlebells hanging at your sides. We recommend beginning with a 30 second carry. To increase the challenge, go for a longer time or use a heavier weight.
Watch the Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbzSnBwNWRI
This workout is designed to target the major muscles groups of the body while still developing the stabilizer muscles required to lift safely and effectively. As your endurance improves, level up your workouts by increasing the weight of the kettlebell you use and the number of reps for each exercise.
About Kettlebell Kings
Kettlebell Kings is a premium-quality kettlebell and kettlebell content provider, based in Austin, Texas. You can view our equipment, kettlebell how-to’s, and get expert advice at https://www.kettlebellkings.com and https://blog.kettlebellkings.com/. Call us at 855-7KETTLE to learn more.
Wishing you the best of health – enjoy your Kettlebell workout and the results it produces!