Fitness

Kettlebell Workouts for Women

Looking for a truly awesome kettlebell workout for women? You’ve come to the right place!

I’ll fill you in on kettlebell basics, tell you why they’re better than dumbbells for certain things, and of course, share my favorite kettlebell workout!

Let’s get started.

What Is a Kettlebell

3 kettlebells sitting against a blue background

A kettlebell is a free weight that looks somewhat like a ball, but with an arched handle that resembles the handle of a traditional tea kettle.

Dumbbells are also a type of free weight, but they differ from kettlebells in their design, as dumbbells are designed with 2 masses of equal weight connected by a straight handle.

Both dumbbells and kettlebells can be used in a wide range of exercises and workouts.

Kettlebell Exercises

A woman swinging a kettlebell during a kettlebell workout

There are a number of exercises for which kettlebells are better than dumbbells because of their design differences. These include:

-Kettlebell swings- These are performed by squatting to grasp the handle of the kettlebell with both hands and, in one motion, standing up and swinging the kettlebell outward with the arms fully extended. This motion is repeated at a high pace and is a great whole body workout.

-Kettlebell deadlifts- This exercise resembles a traditional barbell deadlift, but a single kettlebell is used instead.  Like a traditional deadlift, this exercise targets the lower back and legs. This is somewhat more difficult to do with a dumbbell as it can be hard to fit both hands on the handle of the dumbbell.

-Goblet squat- For this exercise a kettlebell will be grasped with both hands, each hand holding one side of the arched handle. The kettlebell is held in front of the torso at chest level, and a squat is performed. This exercise is a great lower body workout, and is more difficult with a dumbbell due to design differences, as it can be hard to hold a dumbbell with both hands in this way.

-Turkish get-up- You begin this whole body exercise lying flat on the floor, with a single kettlebell extended at arm’s length over your body. As smoothly and quickly as possible, you will stand up, keeping the kettlebell held straight up in the air during the entire motion. The ability of a kettlebell to swing freely during the stand-up portion of this exercise makes it a better choice when compared to a dumbbell.

-Strict press- For this shoulder workout, you begin with a single kettlebell in your hand and your arm in front of you almost in the position you’d have it in to begin an arm wrestle. You rotate your arm outward until it is parallel to your torso and then raise the kettlebell upward like a normal shoulder press. You then lower the kettlebell and rotate your arm back to the starting point. This movement feels much more natural when done with the freely hanging kettlebell rather than a dumbbell.

Kettlebell vs Dumbbell

A woman holding a kettlebell above her head as part of a kettlebell workout

Kettlebells offer a number of benefits over dumbbells.

The way they swing allows for explosive, dynamic movements like full-body exercises that double as cardio, such as Crossfit workouts.

Kettlebells have a larger handle that allows for both hands to fit. This makes possible certain exercises that would be somewhat difficult to do with a dumbbell.

Another benefit of the kettlebell design, which allows the weighted portion to swing around, a slightly stronger grip is required than would be needed to hang on to a dumbbell.

This facilitates greater development of the forearm muscles.

Kettlebell Workout

Check out Trainer Lindsey’s short, sweet kettlebell workout in the video below!

Do 3-5 sets of 15 reps of each exercise! And remember that the swings are meant to be a hip movement, not a shoulder front raise! 

Get More Awesome Workouts

If you liked this workout, be sure to check out Trainer Lindsey’s Fit Body Challenge!

You can start with the free 15-day challenge to get your feet wet, and then move on to the next level with the 6-week challenge!

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