Kettlebells are expensive, which is why most people purchase only one Kettlebell at a time. This is actually a good thing. When you’re swinging, snatching, and cleaning those Kettlebells with one hand, the side that’s not working needs to work extra hard to maintain balance.
Your abs and lower back come into play, trying to stabilize your entire body. The result is that your abs and lower back become stronger than if you were to perform traditional abdominal and lower back movements.
The main purpose of your abs are to stabilize your spine and keep you upright. Crunches and situps don’t train your abs in this manner. Kettlebells do. Any movement that places stress on your abs, and has you standing upright, is a natural abdominal movement.
Opens up Hip Flexors
When training someone knew, the most common problem I see is tight hip flexors. It comes from our society: we sit too much. Hip flexors are the muscles that help bring your knees up to your chest.
So when I see a rounded back during Kettlebell swings, deadlifts, or bodyweight squats, it comes from tight hip flexors. This arched back is horrible for your back. But it also forces our gut out, making us look fatter then we really are.
Kettlebell training allows our hip flexors to relax by training the antagonistic muscle groups – glutes and hamstrings. This naturally fixes the problems of an arched back, poor posture, and actually makes you look taller and leaner.
Strengthens your Lower Back
I’ve already mentioned that Kettlebell training strengthens your lower back. If you focus on good technique, then you do not have to worry about Kettlebells ruining your back. The people that injure themselves do not properly focus on technique improvement before embarking on a fitness program.
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Kettlebell training shifts your center of gravity and forces your abs to work harder to resist rotation and flexion. Along with your abs, your obliques and erector muscles (low back) work to stabilize your body as well.
Cardio on Steroids
Cardio is effective. Interval training is even more effective. But interval training with Kettlebells is EVEN MORE effective. In case you don’t know, interval training is where you perform a bout of an activity at a high intensity level, followed by a period of low intensity exercise.
For example, with Kettlebell training, you can do 30 seconds of all out Kettlebell swings, followed by 30 seconds of rest. Interval training not only helps you burn fat, but also allows you to spare hard-earned muscle mass.