How to build strength fast!
with FIP Ambassador Kristina Johnson @lifting_belle
We are so super stoked to feature a long time Flex it Pink babe and two year Ambassador. She's a one of a kind gem from the South who knows a whole lot about fitness and has a passion for Kettlebells. She posts tons of inspiration and great tips so feel free to give her a follow here.
What is a Kettlebell?
A kettlebell is a free weight made of cast iron. It is uneven, thus causing your stabilizing muscles and abdominals to stay engaged during training.
Benefits of Training with Kettlebells
There are many benefits to training with kettlebells such as: improves balance, endurance, flexibility and coordination. Kettlebell training engages multiple muscle groups at the same time and is a highly effective way to build strength, flexibility and power in a short period of time.
A FEW FUNDAMENTALS
The Kettlebell Swing:
While there are numerous fundamental kettlebell exercises, the kettlebell swing is considered to be the most powerful kettlebell movement. The kettlebell swing is also the foundation of all kettlebell ballistic exercises, and is extremely beneficial, when done correctly. In just one efficient movement, a person can combine strength training and cardiovascular conditioning.
The Russian and American Swing:
There are two types of kettlebell swings, and it is important you understand the difference. The Russian Kettlebell Swing allows a person to swing from just below the groin to shoulder height. I advise beginners start with the Russian swing to learn complete control over the kettlebell. The American Swing, which is a progression of the Russian Swing, differs in that the kettlebell ends directly overhead, rather than at shoulder height.
The Dos of Swinging:
To begin the Russian Kettlebell Swing, the kettlebell should be slightly in front of you, with feet hip width apart. Your chest should be up and your eyes should be looking forward. Lower yourself to the kettlebell by reaching down and back with your hips. Place your hands around the handle of the kettlebell with palms facing you. Your hips should be at a hinge, where you feel a slight pull in your hamstrings, and knees should be soft. You should have a straight spine with shoulders pulled back. You will then hike the bell back, exploding through your hips, driving through your heels, passing the quads, keeping the arms extended, stopping at shoulder height, and locking at the top. Your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and abs should all be engaged.
The Don’ts of Swinging:
There are mistakes athletes make when performing the kettlebell swing. They start with a rounded back, they squat rather than hinge, they use their arms to lift the bell, and they hyper-extend at the top. Make sure your back is always flat when you begin and end the swing. The kettlebell swing is a hinge and thrust of the hips, with knees being soft. You should not be lifting the bell, but rather should be allowing the hip thrust to bring the weight to shoulder height.
That's all for now beauties!