Kettlebells offer the chance to work several muscle groups at the same time. Combine a few exercises together in a circuit, and you have yourself an easy way to burn calories and tone muscle.
The following kettlebell workout routine incorporates low-impact movements for a quick muscle-toning workout that can be done nearly anywhere. As long as you have a kettlebell or two handy!
The beauty of this uncomplicated 15-minute workout is that it’s anything but easy. You’re going to work through a series of 5 different exercises combined in a circuit.
The beginner’s kettlebell routine described below is going to incorporate a ladder approach to training. A ladder is where you start out with low reps on your first round of the 5 exercises. Then, with little rest, you’ll progressively increase the reps as you move up the ladder.
Here are the movements you’ll be incorporating into the ladder and a basic description of how to perform each.
- Spread your legs shoulder-width apart with a kettle in-between them.
- Bend at the legs, back straight and grab the kettlebell with both hands.
- Lift the kettlebell to the top position using your legs.
- Assume the same position as you did in the first step of the deadlifts.
- Lift the kettlebell to knee height with your back straight. Then swing the kettlebell back between your legs until your forearms touch your inner thighs.
- Next, with arms straight – swing the weight up to eye level.
- Lift the kettlebell up to chest level by placing your hands on the side of the handle. Keep the weight tight to your chest to avoid back strain.
- Squat down below parallel with your feet shoulder width or slightly shoulder-width apart
- Return to the starting position without allowing your knees to lock out.
- Hold the kettlebell with both hands on the top of the handle, bend your knees slightly and bend your torso to a 45-degree angle.
- With your arms extended to the bottom position, lift the kettlebell until the handle touches the bottom of your chest.
- Lower the weight slowly and repeat.
Note: If you can, hold a kettlebell in each hand to work both sides evenly. If this isn’t possible, alternate from one arm to the next to get your total reps (i.e., 4 reps with one arm, then 4 with the other).
- Hold the kettlebell or kettlebells at shoulder level with legs spread at shoulder-width.
- Bend knees slightly into a quarter-squat then push the weight overhead as you come up.
- Return to bottom position without resting and repeat.
Incorporate the Exercises into the Ladder
- Round 1: Complete 4 reps of each of the 5 exercises described above.
- Round 2: Rest for no more than a minute, then double the reps on each exercise to 8 reps each.
- Round 3: Once again, with little rest, complete 12 reps of each exercise.
- Round 4: Finish climbing the ladder by performing another circuit of 16 reps this time.
- Round 5: Now it’s time to descend the ladder, go back down to 12 reps for each exercise this round.
- Round 6: Scale back to 8 reps for an entire circuit.
- Round 7: Tired yet? You’re almost there. Just 4 reps for each exercise this round and you’re done!
Until you actually do it, the workout might seem easy. After this 15-minute workout is finished, you’ll not just be glad you did it, but also relieved you’re done for the day!
- 10 – 20 pounds for women.
- 20 – 40 pounds for men.
Use too much weight too soon and you’ll regret it the next day!
Make Each Workout a Challenge
Choose weights that are challenging, but that also allow you to get through the entire workout. As you progress, don’t be afraid to raise the poundages appropriately and/or add in different exercises as you learn them.