In recent years, many people have been resorting to kettlebell swings because of the benefits and impact this exercise enforces. A kettlebell is a piece of equipment, and while many exercises can be performed with the equipment, kettlebell swings have shown practical training and weight loss results.
What Is A Kettlebell Swing?
The exercise involves gripping the kettlebell and swinging it in front of the body, sometimes to the top of the head, and then swinging it back down through the legs.
It is a full-body exercise that both beginners and bodybuilders can incorporate into their workouts. Swimming kettlebells train the entire body, improve cardiovascular health, and help burn calories.
There are many variations of kettlebell swings, but the most common is the American swing and the Russian swing (conventional swing). The Russian swing is swinging the kettlebell in front of the body by keeping the arms straight and horizontal, and then the kettlebell descends back between the legs.
With the American swing, you swing the kettlebell to the top of your head, which means the arms use more muscle power to go the extra mile.
The Worked Muscles That You Should Feel
Kettlebell swings are excellent for burning fat since they work a wide variety of muscles and demand more energy and calories to propel the movement.
Glutes: One of the primary muscles worked are the glutes because these muscles help to push through the swing. Whether it is an American or Russian swing, you should feel a contraction and squeeze of the glute muscles when the kettlebell reaches the top.
Quadriceps/Thigh muscles: The posterior chain (hamstrings, erectors, glutes) is not the only group of muscles in work when you swing the kettlebell. The quadriceps, more commonly termed quads, play an essential role in strengthening and stabilizing the leg muscles.
Along with the calves, the quadriceps support the knees when you start the hip thrust after the hip hinge. This muscle is felt when you extend the knees.
Hamstrings: Hamstrings and glutes work as companions to help exert the pressure and force needed to swing the weight of the kettlebell. As you start with the kettlebell from the floor, the hamstrings and glutes will fully engage until the standing position.
Lower And Upper Back Muscles: The muscles in the lower will work minimally but should be upright and straight throughout the entire exercise.
When you are standing, the glutes, upper back muscles, and core maintain the spine so that you are prevented from leaning forward because of the kettlebell load.
The erector spinae muscles help stabilize the spine to prevent the back from curving forward. These muscles come into play as you switch your back from bending forward to an upright position during the swing.
The trapezius and rhomboids maintain the shoulder blades to help the spine maintain the upright position. As you descend from the upright position, the same muscles are at work to help maintain posture, balance, and a straight back.
Hands, Forearms, And Shoulders: During the entire exercise, the hands and forearms are in continuous use. So these are other sets of muscles you should feel and concentrate on so you don’t lose grip on the kettlebell bar.
Balance is essential when it comes to the top half of the swing, so you need to have stabilized shoulders and scapulae. During this part of the exercise, the shoulders are safely pulled down and the back arched.
Benefits Of Kettlebell Swings
Knowing the reason is as important as knowing the muscles worked so that you understand the exercise well. That is why covering the muscles worked is not enough. Here are some benefits you reap from doing kettlebell swings.
Kettlebell swings are an excellent metabolic conditioning workout that helps with body recomposition and weight reduction. Kettlebell swings offer both total-body resistance exercise and intensity, which increases the number of calories expended and aids in overall fat reduction.
Adding this exercise to a HIIT routine workout can improve the number of calories burnt faster.
Uses More Muscles At The Same Time
Your body uses a lot of muscles in the upper and lower body during a kettlebell swing. Working several muscles group is better because you can achieve benefits in less time. Swinging greater weights increases joint stimulation and muscle activation across the whole body.
Kettlebell use shows you instinctively what proper posture feels like. You must maintain a straight back and activate your core to keep your balance.
The glutes and hamstrings take most of the load, while the erector, trapezium, and rhomboid, along with other muscles, prevent hunching and leaning forward during the exercise.
Hip flexibility is greatly improved because of the hip thrusts and hinges performed during the kettlebell swings. The continuous contraction and extension of the glutes help loosen the tight hips, resulting in inadequate hip movements.
Helps To Strengthen the Core
Your obliques contribute to maintaining your posture while your lower back, midsection, and abdomen stabilize your body during the swing. Your core ultimately becomes noticeably stronger and better.
With one exercise, you get a lot of muscles worked and strengthened. The muscles in the lower body, like the glutes and hamstrings, do the maximum amount of work to drive the movement.
The erector spinae muscles ensure that your spine remains stable throughout the workout. So add kettlebell swings to your workout routines and give them a try.
You can also check: 7 Exercises To Lose Thigh Fat