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Monday, July 14, 2008

What's Hot - Kettlebell Workouts

As you all know, I keep my finger firmly on the pulse of what's new, hot, and most importantly, effective in fitness. There's just about no workout I haven't done!
However, I've yet to experience the fitness craze surrounding "kettle bell" workouts. Heck, I have to admit, my gym doesn't even have them. So, what exactly ARE kettlebells, and what do you do with them? This fitness diva decided to find out.

First off, the kettle bell, which was invented in Russia, is a cast iron weight that is basically a ball with a handle. They have been around since the 1700's, and their reputation for creating strong, all around fit specimens of athlete is growing tremendously outside of the country in which they were born. They've been used in Russia and Europe for ages, and can help you become stronger and fitter than most traditional dumbbell and barbell workouts are able to.

They come in different sizes, ranging from 9, 18, 26, 35, 53, 70 to 88 pounds.
The average man should start with the 35 lb weight, and the average woman should begin with the 18. If you're a not so conditioned female, I think the 9 would work better for you to start with, and for guys, the 26. Just starting out, that's already a challenge!

Who uses them? Olympic level weight lifters, Russian Special Forces, US Military soldiers, the FBI Hostage Rescue team, competetive athletes, and anyone wanting a hard, strenuous, heart rate raising, fat burning workout without having to do aerobics or long weight training sessions. Kettlebells are becoming a new fitness craze around the world, and for good reason. They work!

Check out the video to get an idea of what kettlebells are, and how you might be able to incorporate them into your workouts. I am going to get myself one just to try it!

Anybody out there already using these? Let us know what you think about them, and what they've done for your workout. All experts welcome! ;)

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Shelia said...

You've schooled me on something this afternoon. I've seen these, but I never knew what they were, seen anybody use them, or what was done with them.

I've got to get into fitness aides, I've been so resistant. I always figured as long as I can run, I'm good.

After a running accident that caused me knee surgery and cut my running down big time, I'm having to pursue other fitness means. Grrrrrr!!.

Urban Thought said...

I used them for the first time a couple of weeks ago. I think they are great. Better than using dumbbells (depending on the exercise). But I'm no expert.

I have to talk to the club manager about getting some for the location I'm at now.

Condo Blues said...

Oh, kettlebells are weights. I was hoping that kettlebells had something to do with kettlecorn. :)

I haven't tried them. I stick to regular handweights.

Angie said...

I just got a couple of kettlebells and have tried out some of the exercises that game with the KB. So far I love it..but still not sure what I am doing! LOL

The Fitness Diva said...

Hey, Sheila... you really do have to stretch the boundaries a bit to find something that will keep you motivated and into it enough to do it consistently. Finding a new groove to get into after an injury or surgery is especially hard. Don't give up, though.... just keep trying different things. One of them is sure to catch on and help you get back on track.

The Fitness Diva said...

So you worked out with the old K bells, huh Urban? Cool. I should tell my gym to get some too. I love it when new fitness toys come out. The gym is already full of them, but you can always use a few more! We need kettlebells!

Condo, it's funny that you mention kettle corn...I just bought microwave popcorn yesterday for the first time in ages. I swear, I'm psychic! I bought it before you said it.... lol

Angie, keep playing around with them. You can come up with your own routines when you just experiment around with a thing.
That's what I do with any and every piece of exercise equipment I buy or come upon.
I follow the video a couple times just to get the basics, and after that, I just flow with it. That's why working out is always fun to me. I'm always on some experimental BS ... ;)

workout mommy said...

I have just recently begun using them and I love it! I am able to get a very intense workout with no impact.

try it out, I don't think you will be disappointed!

GiGi said...

I've seen the new infomercial on Kettlebells.

About 5 years ago I dated a guy who was really into them - long before anyone really knew much about them. He had the old cast iron types and when he started swinging them around his living room, all I could think of was how dangerous it looked! LOL

He insisted they were going to be the next great thing and he wanted to start a website about it.

Too bad he didn't follow up...

The Fitness Diva said...

Too bad indeed, Gigi...
He could have been the messenger!

Ricardo said...

Many people swear by these. Seeing them in action reminds of of workouts I have done with a amedicine ball. The handle on the bell allows you to do more more free weight type of stuff so advantage to the bell. I would love to try it but if flies smack in the face of the current program I've used for the last couple of years with great results. I've always been a really skinny guy so my workouts tend to focus more on putting on mass and lifing heavy. I still may give it a go to swich things up. If it worked for the dudes in Russia I guess it could work for me.

Denis Kanygin said...

Kettlebell is the ultimate fitness tool. Oh yes!

It asks the body to work as one unit. A good thing, since that reveals weak link and fixes them.

Form, however, is very important when it comes to kettlebells. Please use a trainer as you're learning the technique.

I've seen great results when it comes to weight loss, endurance and strength gain.

My fitness boot camps are structured around russian kettlebell training.

whataboutblog said...

They look neat, but I'm sure I'd pull every muscle in my back out if I tried to use them!

Chat Blanc (aka Sandy) said...

I haven't used them yet, but I appreciate learning a bit about them. I can see how they definitely can help get your heart rate up. Don't think I'm quite ready for it! :)

Dianne said...

I can honestly say I'd never heard of them before reading your post and watching the video. It never fails to amaze me how thing go around and come back around again!

Bill said...

you have a great site here. very informative. have a good one.

Lauren said...

Kettlebells are amazing! I have been using them for you years with my clients. I actually just came out with a Kettlebell DVD, that's how much I love them!

Thanks for the post!

The Fitness Diva said...

Good for you, Lauren! I think it's cool that a woman is rocking a kettlebells DVD. I've only seen male instructors doing this so far. Good luck to you!

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