Kettlebells 101: The Basics

While kettlebell training has a long history, its absence and recent rediscovery within the fitness world have lead many to believe that this type of training is new and innovative. However, this idea is far from accurate, as kettlebell train has been around for centuries. In fact, these bell-shaped objects were commonplace in gyms and training locations as far back as the ancient Greeks. There are still many images remaining depicting old time strongmen using kettlebells as a strength tool. More recently, for the past 100 years, kettlebells have been used throughout Eastern Europe to functionally train for strength. Interestingly, the contemporary kettlebell actually originated in Russia where it was referred to as a handle-bell or girya.

Thanks to Pavel Tsatsouline, the interest in kettlebell training evolved throughout the USA and Canada. Pavel brought his vast knowledge of the kettlebell with him when he emigrated from Russia several years ago.  The kettlebell is an excellent tool for fat loss, building strength, endurance, and improving health. They are made of cast iron and resemble a cannonball attached to a thick handle. They come in fixed weights based on an old Russian measuring system called the pood .  One pood is the equivalent to 16 kilograms, or about 35 pounds. Many kettlebells are now measured in pounds and kilograms as opposed to the traditional pood. They commonly range from as low as 5lbs and up to 106lbs.

Despite their fixed weight, kettlebells are extremely versatile. There are literally hundreds of different exercise variations to develop strength, endurance, speed, size and overall conditioning. Common movements include swings, snatches, squats, lunges, cleans, deadlifts, presses and many other functional lifts. Kettlebell training is becoming so popular that many fitness instructors are offering classes dedicated solely to this type of training.

Kettlebell Basics

To learn more about kettlebells and their various exercises please stop into your nearest Fitness Town location and speak to our experts. Fitness Town offers kettlebells as well as educational tools to get you started with your training.

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