Why Everyone Should Swing...
by Angie Miller
…a kettlebell of course.
When it comes to time efficient workouts that deliver results, kettlebells can’t be beat. Kettlebells are a great cardiovascular and strength training workout that target your core and improve your balance and flexibility. They’re one of the most versatile, effective training tools for all over body conditioning.
How is kettlebell training different from regular strength training?
In kettlebell training you don’t isolate specific muscles. Instead you concentrate on movement patterns that incorporate the whole body. These types of movement patterns recruit more muscles and help you burn calories more efficiently. They’re functional, so they transfer to real life. Think about: removing luggage from a moving carousel, a dog pulling on a leash, holding the hand of a running child, and swinging grocery bags.
Another unique feature of the kettlebell is that the weight is offset from the handle, so it fluctuates throughout movement. This creates momentum, and it requires the stabilizing muscles of the core to control the momentum and manage the bell throughout the movement. This strengthens the entire torso, and it’s why kettlebells help us redistribute our weight and lose inches around our middle.
How safe is Kettlebell Training?
Kettlebell training, with proper instruction, is a safe, multifaceted way to train your entire body. In my Kettlebell Bootcamp DVD, I include a tutorial that breaks down some of the more common kettlebell exercises. Remember that practice is the mother of skill. With practice, we can improve our form and technique, as well as the overall condition of our body.
Q - What is one the most essential kettlebell exercises?
A - I love Double Arm Swings! Here’s a brief tutorial:
Double Arm Swings- With this exercise, you will send your hips back, load them up, and explode forward. Begin by sitting back with the hips, knees slightly bent, chest open, and shoulders down and back. The weight is in your heels, rooted to the ground. Swing the kettlebell back between the legs, snap your hips, and stand up tall, squeezing your glutes and extending your legs. Don’t try to lift the bell with your arms. All the power comes from your hips. Breathing is important here. Take a deep inhale in through the nose on the way down, and forcefully exhale as the kettlebell comes up. You should not feel any pain in your lower back. If you do, check your form, and remember your breathing.
Best in Health
Check back next week for more fitness tips and information, and feel free to reach out with any questions.
Angie Miller is the star and creator of the Bedroom Body™ Workout and other top selling exercise DVD’s. Passionate about fitness and education, Angie teaches at Northern Illinois University and is a Certification Specialist for the Aerobic and Fitness Association of America (AFAA). She is a freelance writer, group fitness instructor, personal trainer, and proud mom. Learn more about Angie at: http://www.angiemillerfitness.com