The kettlebell swing is a great dynamic exercise that incorporates the benefits of an explosive hip drive. This exercise trains a large range of motion, which trains many different muscle groups simultaneously. In addition, this exercise mimics the Olympic weight lifts (namely the Clean) which improves speed and power production.
KETTLE-BELL SWING FORM VIDEO
MUSCLES WORKED DURING THE KETTLE-BELL SWING
- Low Back
BENEFITS OF THE KETTLE-BELL SWING
- Strengthens the low back, glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps muscles while incorporating core stability
- Trains a large range of motion with minimal equipment and without requiring heavy weight
- Trains explosive hip extension which creates power and improves overall athleticism
PERFORMING THE KETTLE-BELL SWING
- Obtain a kettle-bell and position it in front of you between your legs. They come in different sizes so make sure you pick one that is suitable to your level of strength).
- Get into a stance that is slightly wider than shoulder width with your feet pointed forward
- Bend at the hips and knees and pick up the kettlebell with outstretched arms while maintaining a neutral spine.
- At this point, you will be in the starting position. Take a breath and brace your core
- To begin the movement, shift your hips back with a slight knee bend while gently swinging the kettlebell back behind you.
- Keep your arms straight and in between your legs, and do not allow your spine to bend
- We will call this the ready position
- From this position forcefully extend at the hips so that the kettlebell is propelled up and forward
- Squeeze your glutes and continue utilizing the momentum of the kettlebell to bring it all the way overhead with your elbows still locked
- Control the downward swing back to the ready position to perform the next repetition
- Perform the movement in a controlled manner- do not let the weight control you.
- Ensure that you do not bend at the spine throughout the entire movement
COMMON KETTLE-BELL SWING MISTAKES
– PERFORMING THE MOVEMENT WITH POOR CONTROL
- Start light and make sure the movement pattern is controlled and deliberate.
– BENDING AT THE SPINE
- No movement should come from any individual vertebrae. Bend at the hips and knees and focus on maintaining a neutral spine throughout the entire exercise
HOW CAN I INTEGRATE KETTLE BELL SWING INTO MY TRAINING?
Check out The WCT Best Workout Template For Busy Professionals to find a simple way to add the kettle-bell swing and other great exercises into your routine.
KETTLE BELL SWING ALTERNATIVES
Alex Robles, MD, CPT / Brittany Robles, MD, MPH, CPT
Alex & Brittany Robles are physicians, NASM Certified Personal Trainers, and founders of The White Coat Trainer: a resource dedicated to improving the health and fitness of busy professionals using time-efficient strategies. Their advice has been featured in My Fitness Pal, Prevention, Livestrong, Reader’s Digest, Bustle, The Active Times, and more. Learn more about them here.