The Fitness Zone
Kettlebells are one of the leading trends within the fitness industry with most studios and health clubs having a large variety of sizes for Personal Trainers and members to use. This trend stems from the ‘functional training’ style of fitness and is very different from the standard weights on a rack. If you haven’t had the opportunity to have a play around with kettlebells, we recommend that spend some time with your personal trainer so you can learn the fundamentals around technique so you get the most out of this workout.
They may be a regular fixture at your local gym, but kettlebells have a history that goes back hundreds of years. To many Aussie gym-goers, kettlebells are a new industry toy that has only gained popularity in the past decade, however they date as far back as the 1800s as a training tool for the military, Olympians and strongmen.
Over the past few years Australian Institute of Fitness Queensland Training Team Captain, Kate Kraschnefski, has turned her interest in kettlebells into a full-blown passion, representing Australia in what is known as Kettlebell Sport.
“I’ve been fascinated by kettlebells since they emerged on the fitness scene in Australia, although initially I had no idea how to use them,” Kate says. Kate has come along way since then, having recently represented Australia at the Kettlebell World Championships.
Kate’s coach and Australian team mate Jessica Wadd, says kettlebells are gaining so much popularity for the everyday exerciser as well due to their diversity.
“Not only are you building muscle through the resistance of the bell, but also cardio benefits because of the length of time that you are performing the movements for,” says Jessica.
You may not feel ready to represent Australia just yet, but give one of Kate and Jess’s favourite kettlebell session a go next time you hit the gym! If you're just starting out, try perfecting the first two moves first before progressing to the more advanced cleans and snatches.
Start the workout with a 10 minute warmup of your choice e.g. on a stationary bike or on the treadmill. This will ensure that your muscles are warm and will help prevent injury.
When executing these moves, remember that technique is the most important aspect, NOT the amount of weights you use. Start off light and increase as you get stronger and as your body becomes more familiar with each exercise.
Your goal is to complete 3 rounds of each exercise with minimal rest
Exercise One :20 kettlebell swings
Exercise Two: 10 goblet squats
Exercise Three: 10 cleans each side
Exercise Four: 10 push press each side
Exercise Five: 10 snatch each side
After your workout, to ensure you are not too stiff tomorrow, take time to cool down properly, stretch and drink plenty of water. As you become more familiar with these moves, you can start to progress your weight selection.
If you are a Personal Trainer, you are required to complete approved continuing education to be able to train your clients with kettlebells.