Kettle bell workout

Try these kettle bell exercises for strength and cardio training combined.
Published 4 December 2015

Kettle bell workout

Why: Exercising with a kettle bell is a good way to get a quick, whole body workout that improves strength and mobility. And it’s enjoyable too! Twice a week, do these five exercises in sequence for an intense but short workout that helps you build lean muscle mass, gives your metabolism a boost, and strengthens ligaments and tendons to help prevent injury.

What you need: A small, lightweight kettle bell.

Safety first

Make sure you follow these tips when using a kettle bell:
Start simple with a lighter weight or no weight – you can practise the exercises with correct form first.
Give yourself enough space to move the kettle bell around.
Warm up thoroughly to avoid injury – a brisk walk will do.
Keep a towel handy – sweaty hands can cause you to drop the weight.

1. Round the body pass | Warm-up

How-to: Hold the kettle bell in both hands, in front of your torso, feet hip-width apart. Release the kettle bell into your right hand, then move it behind your back and into the left hand. Repeat the circular motion 10 times, then switch direction.

Round the body pass

2. The swing

Works: Your shoulders & bottom

How-to: Hold the kettle bell with both hands and stand with your feet wider than hip-width apart. Bend your knees and squat down, then squeezing your bottom drive your hips forward and then swing the kettle bell up to shoulder height, keeping your arms straight. As it begins to arc back down, tighten your tummy, squeeze your bottom, bend your knees and squat, swinging the kettle bell between your legs. That’s one rep. Do two sets of 10-15 reps.

The Swing

3. Lunge and loop

Works: Your legs and bottom

How-to: Hold the kettle bell in your right hand, arms at your sides, palms in. Stand with your right foot 60-90cm in front of the left, toes pointing forward, back heel off the floor. Bend your knees and pass the kettle bell under your right leg into your left hand, and stand up straight. Repeat the move in the opposite direction. Continue to pass the kettle bell back and forth for 1 minute.

Lunge and loop

4. Squat

Works: Your thighs and bottom

How-to: Hold the kettle bell by the horns with both hands in front of your chest. Shift your weight onto your heels, bend your knees and hips, and sit back as if you’re lowering halfway into a chair. Press your heels and stand back up. Repeat for 40 seconds (that’s about 20 squats).


5. Row

Works: Your back

How-to: Stand with your left leg forward, toes pointing straight ahead, with your back foot perpendicular to the front. Bend your left knee and hold the kettle bell in your right hand, with your arm extended towards the floor. Keeping a flat back, rest your left forearm lightly on your left thigh for balance. Pull the kettle bell up by bringing your right elbow behind you in a rowing motion, then slowly lower it back down to the start position. That’s one rep. Do 10-15 reps, then switch sides.