The benefits of weightlifting with kettlebells have been known for centuries, but these free weights have recently become popular again due to the emergence of high-intensity workout programs and gyms. Named because of their appearance, these weights look like a ball of metal with a handle on top, and make use of a simple design that has stood the test of time.
Most fitness stores will sell a variety of kettlebell types; Russian, contoured and adjustable. All follow the same general rules regarding the placement of the handle and the distribution of weight, but differ in other places. For example, the adjustable type has sections of weight that can be unscrewed, making it easy to adjust the weight being lifted, whereas the Russian style are made from solid cast iron and have set weights such as 12kg. Contoured kettlebells allow for easier lifting, making them better for beginners.
Lifting this type of weight is a very basic exercise that can be developed to work out other areas. A normal lift will work the arms, legs and back, although there are other angles and speeds that can be adopted to target specific muscles and endurances. These power exercises help build strength quicker through the sudden exertion and rest of muscle fibers. Because of the intensity of the workouts with kettlebells, they can be used for a shorter time and still help the lifter burn more calories than with a regular workout.
By far one of the most advantageous things about the weights is the additional benefits that they can have on an athlete’s health. As they build the core and tone the arms, legs and chest, they also improve how the body moves, flexibility and physical co-ordination. When used in conjunction with a special workout video or physical training program that includes multiple repetitions in fast-paced bursts they can build and tone muscle quickly and with minimum risk of damage. They are also move in a way that makes them safer to use without the risk of causing injury. This is why many gyms are now including them as part of their basic weight collections.