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In the corners of most gyms across the world sit an array of kettlebells – cast iron balls with a single handle welded atop. Sure they look weird, and usually are used by CrossFitters, group classes, and that one guy who loves preaching about functional fitness. But when you use this kettlebell workout routine you’ll quickly find it’s more useful than the usual free weights you’re used to.
Turns out, that training with kettlebells can help you pack on more muscle, generate power, develop strength, and torch more calories. And since you sometimes work one side at a time, you’ll also improve your balance and stability for better movement and fewer injuries.
The ball-and-handle shape of the kettlebell allows for a greater variety of movements. For example, you can perform all of the standard pushing and pulling moves you already do with dumbbells, but they’ll be harder since the largest part of the bell sits below your wrist compared to a dumbbell where the weight is aligned with your wrist. As a result, it’ll feel heavier.
You’re also able to perform more explosive exercises like snatches, cleans, and swings with them. This will help you become more powerful and allows you to master Olympic lifting moves that you may not be ready to do with a barbell yet. You can do these exercises with dumbbells, sure, but the design of the kettlebell allows the bell portion to swing around your wrist so the movements feel more fluid. With a dumbbell, your wrist is locked into place the entire time.