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The Best Kettlebell Routines

by
author image Jolie Johnson
Based in Austin, Texas, Jolie Johnson has been in the fitness industry for over 12 years and has been writing fitness-related articles since 2008 for various websites. She received her Bachelor of Arts in English and philosophy from the University of Illinois.
The Best Kettlebell Routines
A man lifting a kettlebell on a bench at the gym. Photo Credit michaeljung/iStock/Getty Images

Overview

Kettlebells look like a canon ball with a handle. Originally used by the Russians as an exercise device, kettlebells have become popular in the west. They can be used for strength, functional and aerobic training. The best kettlebell routines include a variety of kettlebell moves that integrate all three types of training.

Interval Swing & Snatch Routine

This workout uses the two most popular kettlebell exercises for an intense interval workout. After warming up, perform a two-arm kettlebell swing for 20 seconds. Rest 20 seconds. Immediately move to one-armed snatches. Do the snatches for 20 seconds on one side, rest 20 seconds, then switch sides and continue for 20 seconds. Rest 20 seconds. Repeat the sequence, starting again with the two-arm swing. Continue in this manner for 20 minutes. This is an incredibly simple, yet effective, kettlebell routine.

Total-Body Routine

This routine covers every muscle in your body. Short rest periods keep the workout moving and the intensity high. Start with two sets of light kettlebell swings for a warm-up. Perform three progressively heavier sets of kettlebell swings. Complete 12 repetitions the first set, eight repetitions the second set, and six repetitions the third set. Rest for one minute. Perform two sets of one-armed kettlebell clean and presses. Complete six repetitions each side, alternating sides with no rest. Two sets of double bent-over rows target your back and biceps. Use lighter weight for the first set, completing 12 repetitions. Increase the weight and do eight repetitions on the second set. Finish off the workout with the kettlebell windmill to work your core. Do three sets of eight repetitions each side. Rest 30 seconds between sets.

Functional Workout

This workout focuses on exercises that improve your ability to move and coordinate the body as one unit. This type of training helps you perform daily activities such as walking, bending, turning, standing, twisting and lunging with more agility and control. Start with two sets of light kettlebell swings for the warm up. Your first working set is a light set of Turkish get-ups. Perform 10 repetitions each side. Use heavy weight so you fatigue your muscles in 6 to 8 reps for three sets of sumo deadlifts. Rest 60 seconds after each set. The next exercise is the kettlebell overhead split squat. Choose a weight that allows you to complete 15 repetitions each side. Finish the workout with two sets of the two-arm swing catch, 10 repetitions each set.

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