Kettlebells! You know, those odd-looking things in the gym that some folks go nuts over while others have no idea what to do with them? You may have one collecting dust in your garage, a long-forgotten relic of workout fads that have come and gone. If you do have one handy, and you’re looking for some inspiration, then this workout is for you. I’ve picked some of my favorite movements and put them together here. They can be done as a quick workout, or as a warm-up before your usual activities.
This workout is for everyone, from beginners who are brand new to bells to those who’ve been swinging them for years. We’ll be using a single kettlebell for three different exercises (a weight that you would consider light to moderate would work best to start). You can always go up in weight once you’re more familiar with the movements.
We’ll start lying on our back holding the ball of the bell in the palms of our hands directly above our chest with our legs up and knees bent at a 90-degree angle. From here, we’ve got two options. For option one, we’ll keep the 90-degree bend in the knee and drop our heel down the ground, tap the floor, return to the start position, and repeat with the other leg. For option two, a bit more challenging, we’ll lower the leg to the ground, straightening as we do and allowing it to hover above the ground before bending the knee and returning the starting position, repeating on the other side. *Important* no matter which option you choose, be sure to keep enough abdominal engagement that the lower back keeps contact with the floor. Imagine pressing your belly button through your body and into the ground beneath you as you move your legs.
Because we’ll be working in single-arm planks for this movement, I recommend starting off in the easiest position until you get comfortable shifting your weight from side to side and then advancing to the more challenging positions. You’ll still get all the benefits, and your body will have time to build some muscle memory. To start, come to a plank position with the bell to the outside of your left hand. We’ll start off on our knees to get a feel for it before advancing to our toes if you’re comfortable. Keeping your hips and shoulders as parallel to the floor as possible, reach over and grab the kettlebell with your right hand, pulling it outside of where the hand was previously placed. Reset the right hand and, reaching over with the left hand, pull the bell back over to the outside of the left side of the body. If you’re easily able to keep the shoulders and hips parallel to the floor here and you want to try something more challenging, go ahead and advance to the toes, keeping the feet a touch wider than the shoulders. Keep passing side to side, doing your best to shift your body as little as possible, and keeping your shoulders and hips parallel to the floor.
These are some of my favorite movements. They challenge balance and stability, and with an offset weight, they place a unique challenge on the core. Once you feel comfortable with these, feel free to go up in weight as you see fit. In a standing position, hold the kettlebell by the handle so that the ball of the bell is towards the outside of your arm and your elbow is bent enough that you could touch your collarbone with your thumb. Keep a straight, neutral wrist here, and let the bell rest in the “triangle” of your elbow rather than directly on top of your forearm. Do your best to keep your shoulders level and not let the weight pull one side of your body down more than the other. From here, we will slowly march in place, trying to shift as little as possible from side to side as we do. Once you’ve completed one side, repeat on the other side.
We’ll run through each movement 4 times, with 40 seconds on and 20 seconds rest, for a total of 12 minutes. If you’d like a visual, check out the tutorial here:
If personal training is something that you’d like to learn more about, reach out to Wellview concierge to learn more.
Click HERE to learn more about the Wellview services available to you. We can’t wait to work with you!
– ERIN ALLEN, NBC-HWC, CPT, SFG1
Health Advisor | Email Erin