What is a Kettlebell and why use it?
The kettlebell or girya is a traditional Russian cast-iron weight looking somewhat like a cannonball with a handle. The kettle bell has become a popular exercise tool due largely to the efforts of strength and flexibility coach Pavel Tsatsouline and also by World Champion and world record holder Valery Fedorenko. Many companies produce their own brands of kettlebells and kettle bell exercise programs.
Kettlebell workouts are intended to increase strength, endurance, agility and balance, challenging both the muscular and cardiovascular system with dynamic, total-body movements.
Kettlebell lifting has been nationally recognized and played throughout the world for decades, and its competitive exercises are the ‘Two Kettlebell Jerk’ and ‘One Kettlebell Snatch’; performed in that order for ten minutes each. The competitor with the highest overall score wins.
A Kettlebell resembles a cast iron bowling ball with a handle. Like free weights. A set can range in weight from nine to eighty-eight pounds. Experts classify kettlebells as a type of free weight.
Kettlebell exercises focus on a person’s core, specifically the hips, abs and posterior improving performance for athletes in running, jumping and any other movement requiring pelvic thrust and control. By default arms, thighs, chest and back also receive a substantial workout with added definition. The end result creates rounded, defined muscles as opposed to the lean smooth muscles seen on swimmers, gymnasts and cyclists. How kettlebells differ from traditional free weights is defined by use. Foundation moves including the swing, clean, and press engage multiple muscle groups simultaneously, resulting in an overall strengthening of the body as opposed to the single-muscle approach typical of traditional weightlifting.