Are you looking for the ideal workout to build muscle, burn fat, increase functional strength, and improve your mobility in the process?
If so, you may wish to look into kettlebell workouts.
In today’s article, we’re going to be looking at kettlebell swing benefits so that you can understand just how effective kettlebells can be.
We know that it takes a lot of time and effort to get in shape, and we know that getting started is always the hardest step.
If you know what you’re doing, though, and if you utilize some of the amazing pieces of kit currently available, you’ll find that meeting your fitness goals isn’t as difficult as you might have initially thought.
Whilst there are heaps of kettlebell exercises and workouts that you can perform to help you meet your fitness objectives, there’s one particular exercise that is synonymous with kettlebell training, which we will be looking at today.
That exercise is the humble kettlebell swing.
Here’s a look at what the exercise is, as well as 12 mind-blowing benefits which will surely convince you to implement this exercise into your training regime.
What Are Kettlebells?
Before we can begin singing the praises of these awesome exercises, we first need to talk to you about what kettlebells actually are.
When people think of kettlebell exercises, 9 times out of 10 the first exercise that springs to mind are the awesome kettlebell swing.
The kettlebell swing is just one exercise that is designed to resolve a whole variety of physical problems.
Kettlebells are not like dumbbells.
A kettlebell is basically just like a solid cannonball with a slightly smooth top and a handle attached to it.
Kettlebells have been used for fitness purposes for a long time, but it’s only recently that they have started to become popular on a mainstream basis.
In the past, you could only find kettlebells in specialist gyms and fitness centers.
Now, virtually all commercial gyms will have at least one set of kettlebells, if not more.
What Are Kettlebell Swings?
As mentioned, kettlebells are synonymous with kettlebell swings, and vice versa.
But what is this exercise?
Well, although the exercise will address a number of complex physical issues you may be struggling with, actually performing the exercise is quite simple.
A kettlebell swing is an exercise whereby an individual will grasp a kettlebell with both hands, using an overhand grip.
They will then stand with their feet a little wider than shoulder-width.
Now they’ll hold the handle with both hands with the kettlebell between their legs.
To do this, they need to bend the knees slightly and crouch forwards a little.
Now, using the legs, core, and arms, they will lift the kettlebell outwards and upwards, swinging it forwards as high into the air as possible.
Next, the weight is simply lowered back between the legs in a slow and controlled manner.
The exercise can then be repeated for as many reps as required.
If it sounds technical to you, you are basically swinging the kettlebell up into the air in a controlled manner with each rep, making sure to engage your core and keep your feet planted firmly in position.
12 Mind-blowing Kettlebell Swing Benefits
Okay, so now that we know what kettlebells are, and we know what kettlebell swings are and how they’re performed, we can now take a look at 12 mind-blowing benefits.
Be sure to read carefully, as some of the benefits on our list today may just surprise you.
1. Full Body Workout
If you want the ultimate compound exercise, then may we suggest kettlebell swings?
A compound exercise is one that will work several muscle groups for the duration of the exercise.
The more muscles you work at once, the greater the amounts of muscle hypertrophy and strength will be.
Kettlebell swings are considered by many to be the ultimate full-body workout rolled into just one exercise.
When you perform this exercise you will work your core, your back, your shoulders, your arms, your chest, and your legs by the time you’ve completed one single repetition.
Needless to say, the more muscles you work, the more benefits you will be lucky enough to enjoy.
2. Something New
If you want to lift weights, you’ll find that it can get a little boring and repetitive after a while.
Sure, there are new exercises you can do and different programs to follow, but generally, if you’ve only used dumbbells and barbells as far as free weights are concerned, you’ll probably have done every exercise imaginable.
If you want to try something new and exciting, we recommend kettlebell swings.
There are many benefits to be enjoyed, yet one of the most prominent examples has to be the fact that kettlebell swings are so different and unique.
By trying something new you get to keep your training fresh and exciting, plus it also allows you to shock your muscles a little better by putting them through something they’re not used to.
When it comes to free weight exercises, it’s safe to say that some exercises are much harder to perform than others.
In fact, there are some exercises that are so difficult to perform that many consider them to be pretentious.
Fitness should be inclusive.
You shouldn’t need to hold a Ph.D. in sports science to be able to get a solid workout in, which is why we love kettlebell swings.
They’re a very inclusive exercise because they’re so user-friendly.
Mastering the exercise is relatively simple if you begin with very light kettlebells, and once you’ve perfected your technique that’s pretty much it and you’ll be good to go.
4. Great For Explosive Power
Not everybody lifts weights to simply look big and muscular.
Some people lift weights with the sole intention of getting as physically powerful as possible.
Many powerlifters and strongmen will perform kettlebell swings as part of their training and there’s a very good reason for that.
As far as benefits go in terms of strength, this one is very important.
When you perform kettlebell swings you will activate type-1 and type-2 muscle fibers.
This means that you recruit more fast-twitch muscle fibers along with slow-twitch fibers.
Fast-twitch fibers are essential for generating explosive speed and power.
The more of these fibers you are able to recruit, the stronger your muscles will become following each session.
5. Great For The Legs
A lot of people fail to realize that kettlebell swings are actually an incredibly effective exercise when it comes to training the legs.
Because of the fact that you are squatting slightly and hunched forwards, your quads, hamstrings, calves, and glutes, all receive a bit of a workout for the duration of this exercise.
If you’re looking to bring up your legs, kettlebell swings will make a very welcome addition to your leg training routine.
6. Great For Your Core
If you thought that the benefits associated with bringing up your legs were impressive, just wait until you find out how awesome the exercise is for your core.
One of the main reasons why kettlebell training is considered to be so functional is because of the fact that it helps to strengthen your core stabilizer muscles as you execute the movement.
Because you are off-balance as you are hunched over, in order to keep yourself stable you will recruit multiple muscles located in and around your core.
A strong core means a strong body.
Not only that, but if you can get lean enough, this also means that you’ll find it much easier to build yourself a lean and defined six-pack set of abs in the process, and who wouldn’t want that?
7. Burn Fat
To burn fat and get lean and shredded, everybody knows that you have to do plenty of cardio on treadmills and exercise bikes, right?
You can do cardio by all means, but if you are looking to burn fat you will find that using kettlebell swings will help you to do exactly that.
Kettlebell swings are on the top exercises of interval training, they are incredibly physically demanding, which means that they result in you burning off significant amounts of calories as a result.
For people looking to lose weight, kettlebell swings are ideal.
Not only are you burning calories, but you will also find that you’re increasing your metabolism as you build lean muscle tissue.
8. Adaptable Exercise
Another example of some of the awesome benefits that you can enjoy when you perform this exercise is the fact that it’s so adaptable.
By that, we mean that there are a number of different variations of the exercise that you can perform, which will help to benefit your body in different ways.
If for example, you find that your left side is out of proportion when compared with your right, you can help to bring up your symmetry by switching to one-handed kettlebell swings with a lighter weight.
For a really grueling and physically challenging kettlebell workout, why not try alternate kettlebell swings?
Here you’ll perform a set with one arm, and then will instantly alternate to the next arm, and so on.
9. Good Cardio
Cardio may be beneficial for losing weight, but there are other very important benefits associated with cardio that you should also consider.
The name ‘cardio’ is derived from the ancient Greek word ‘Kardia’ which meant ‘Heart’.
As you can probably guess, this next benefit of kettlebell swings is based solely upon your heart.
Kettlebell swings are physically demanding, which means that you’ll burn more calories as your heart rate increases.
This makes the exercise a great form of cardiovascular exercise.
Cardiovascular exercise helps to strengthen the heart, which in turn will help you to avoid cardiovascular disease, heart attacks, strokes, narrowing of the arteries, and much more besides.
If you want to look after your heart, kettlebell swings are a great way of doing precisely that.
10. Improved Mobility
When people talk about the various benefits that can be enjoyed as a result of performing this exercise, people often fail to consider the fact that kettlebell swings are so great for flexibility and mobility.
Performing kettlebell swings will help to increase your mobility in your upper and lower body.
Your hips will become more mobile, your legs will, you’ll enjoy better flexibility and range of motion in the joints, and the exercise will simply help you to become a more functional individual in the process.
11. Improve Your Balance
If you want to improve your balance, kettlebell swings will come in very handy indeed.
When you perform the exercise, as you are bent over you need to swing the kettlebell between your legs, making sure to stay stood firmly where you are.
Losing your balance would render the exercise ineffective, and it could even result in injury.
Kettlebell swings are great because your balance improves exponentially with practice.
Better balance can carry over into a whole variety of different disciplines, including deadlifting in the gym as it will improve hip drive and stability.
12. Great For Back Pain
If you suffer from back pain, here is yet another benefit that you won’t want to miss.
Kettlebell swings when performed correctly have been found to greatly reduce pain and tightness in the back.
And with that, we’ll draw things to a close.
Hopefully, these awesome and mind-blowing kettlebell swing benefits have motivated and inspired you to pick up the kettlebells the next time you’re training in the gym when you want to try something new and exciting when training.