Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Kettlebell 101

What is Kettlebell?

A kettlebell is a Russian cast iron weight pictured below.

During a kettlebell class you will use a kettlebell to do several different exercises which strength train both the arms and the legs. Kettlebells can be all different lengths so each person can choose the appropriate weight and adjust accordingly. If you would like to see kettlebell in action click here.

Why am I talking about Kettlebells today?

About a month ago one of my good friends at work asked me if I'd want to take a kettlebell class with her. She told me she hasn't been great about lifting weights lately (I'll be honest, minus the shred I am ALWAYS terrible about lifting weights) and was looking for some motivation. She heard that kettlebell training is a work out that is supposed to get fast results. I was a little concerned about my knee at first because of the frequent squatting involved in kettlebell. However, I actually read some articles about people who had improved knee problems through kettlebell, so how could I argue with that. I signed up the next day and a few weeks later, today was my first class.

Since signing up I had heard some rumors about how I was not going to be able to walk the next day. Since walking, and standing up/sitting down etc is a large part of my job I was a little scared.

The Verdict

I made it through ALIVE and well! I actually really enjoyed the class. I love how kettlebells has the benefits of weight training but its a little more exciting than doing endless bicep curls because you get your legs involved too. In fact, my instructor kept saying, "it's all in the legs." Of course I was trying to take the pressure off my legs since basically everything in kettlebell is a squat. However, the instructor told me if I turn my feet out a bit I'll take some pressure off my knees (why has no one ever told me this before) and to be honest they really did not hurt at all during the class. We will see how tomorrow goes.

Since the class is at my gym, but is a registration based class- we really started at the beginning today learning the basic moves including the swinging that you see in all the kettlebell videos, pressing the weight up into the air, and then some weird middle move that involves flipping the kettlebell without bruising your arm that I am still not sure I have mastered yet. I definitely will be sore tomorrow but I am not too concerned about walking. However I do have some now third grade students (that I had in kindergarten) who like to jump on me. I may hide from them tomorrow because although I can still lift them, I don't think my body will be happy to lift them tomorrow.

If you ever get a chance to take a kettlebell class, I definitely recommend it. Especially if you are a bit of a reluctant, or maybe I should say slacker, weight trainer like I am :)


  1. cool - glad you enjoyed kettleball training. I actually enjoy "endless bicep curls" but switching it up every now and again would be good for me too!

  2. oh wow this sounds like a great switch up to normal weight training!

  3. I have never heard of kettleball before! The video looks so funny, that loner man just throwing this heavy ball between his legs! haha I'm glad your knees are ok, and thanks for introducing me to this great exercise! I could do it in my living room, which would be convenient since I am losing my OSU gym membership :( Christmas IS coming up :)

  4. LMAO at the pic! Kettleballs kick your @ss!!!

  5. I've heard they're great, but we don't have any classes here. Well done on making it through!

  6. Sounds like fun! Glad you are taking the class! Let us know tomorrow how the legs feel! :)

  7. i tried kettle bell workouts tonight. my knee does not like it, i can tell you that much. but i was probably doing it all wrong, as always!

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  9. I have always been curious about kettle ball classes. When I was doing a boot camp class, I remember the trainer talking about that. I have been trying really hard this past week to eat better and work out. Yesterday I had a really great run. It is so funny to be using a treadmill that is in km. I was going 12 km/hr and I felt like I was flying bc that number would be SO fast in miles/hr. I was really only going 7.5miles/hour but it felt good!

    Keep the updates coming on kettle ball. I am interested to see how fast the results come!

  10. I think you just sold me on kettleball classes haha! I'm such a baby when it comes to weight training...I know I need to do it, but I'm just lazy. Plus, my arms, not so strong. I'm totally a lower body girl so I'm cool with any strength move that requires squatting or lunging! Do you think they have like kettleball dvds - for a more wallet friendly workout of course! hehe.

  11. Love that before pic. That would totally be me!

    So, how sore are your legs/arms this morning?

  12. sounds like fun! i know i'd DEFINITELY be sore probably later that day. love the pic :)