As women lead increasingly busier lives, shedding excess pounds, maintaining a healthy weight, and staying active in general becomes increasingly difficult.
Kettlebell workouts are effective and practical workout options that can help remedy this. They work quickly and can be done wherever there is floor space.
So how can you use kettlebell workouts for women to meet your goals, even as you lead a busy life? We look at a few options below.
Introducing The Kettlebell Workout
Kettlebells can be described as weighted workout apparatus that resemble a miniature bowling ball affixed to a handle for ease of use.
Kettlebells are available at different weights, and much like dumbbells, their free weights nature make them very portable and practical instruments for a wide variety of workouts, including cardio, strength, and flexibility training workouts.
On account of the variety offered, you are unlikely to get bored with kettlebell based workouts.
Putting First Things First: How To Find The Right Kettlebell Workout For You
As is the case with most workouts, the format of your kettlebell workout is highly dependent on your fitness experience (or ability) and your fitness goals.
According to fitness expert Jamie Press (Orbit Fitness), both your experience and goals should be clearly defined before you can put anything into practice and formulate an effective workout program.
Press also asserts that both these elements should be considered in light of the FITT (Frequency, Intensity, Type, Time) principle in order to perfectly tailor a plan to your needs .
Four Kettlebell Workouts For Women To Help You Reach Your Goals
1. The Total-body Kettlebell Workout
The trick to the total-body workout is to target as many muscle groups as possible while getting the heart rate up enough to impact cardiovascular fitness.
Chris Lopez, StrongFirst Level II Kettlebell Instructor, and editor at kettlebellworkouts.com shares the ideals of a quick (20-30 mins), kettlebell workout for women, using the regimen he designed for his own wife (who’s been able to lose 15lbs in eight weeks).
According to Chris, the total-body kettlebell workout must include :
- A proper warm-up to increase flexibility and prepare the body and appropriate muscles for the workout. As such, planks, side planks, bridges, static stretches for quads, hip flexors, pecs, lats, and hamstring, should all be included.
- A main workout which includes pushups, not too many squats (opting instead for lunges, squat splits, step-ups, deadlifts, and kettlebell swings.
- Lots of core stability work, including exercises like planks, reverse abs curls, spiderman climbs, mountain climbers, and opposite hip touches. Traditional sit-ups and crunches need not apply.
- A strong finish, where the focus is on kettlebell swings, which Lopez considers a near perfect exercise.
2. The Cardio Kettlebell Workout
A great way to get in a cardio workout using a kettlebell is to opt for a HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) circuit workout according to lead trainer from the KettleworX 8-Week Rapid Evolution DVD set, Alex Isaly.
To both sculpt the body while getting your cardio blast, Isaly recommends combining cardio intervals with kettlebell moves to achieve a calorie burn up to 20 calories per minute and increase cardiovascular fitness significantly .
3. The Strength Training/Body Sculpting Kettlebell Workout
Los Angeles based fitness trainer, and creator of the Ultimate Kettlebell Workout For Beginners DVD, Paul Katami, swears by the following six combination, body sculpting kettlebell moves :
- The Swing (targeting the glutes, hamstring, and shoulders)
- The Clean to Rock (targeting the chest, biceps, and thighs)
- The Push Press (targeting the quadriceps, glutes, and shoulders)
- The Chop Lunge (targeting the thighs, glutes, and abs)
- Lateral Lunge and Biceps Curl (targeting the inner thighs, biceps, and quadriceps)
- The Halo (targeting the triceps)
Each exercise is repeated for approximately 30 – 90 seconds.
4. The Flexibility Training Kettlebell Workout
Flexibility is an extremely important part of any workout program, though it is often overlooked. KX Barre instructors Rachel Fraser and Sophie Cunningham created this quick and easy, six-move stretching routine which can perfectly combine with just about any kettlebell (or other) workout routine. The routine includes :
- The Cobra (stretches the arms, chest, abs and thighs)
- The Cobra version 2 (stretches the chest, abs and thighs)
- 1/2 Bow Pose (stretched the chest, legs and back))
- The Bow Pose (Strengthens and stretches the back)
- The Down Dog Split (targets the calves, hamstring, arms, and back)
- The Down Dog Split version 2 (with bent leg extension)
This routine is only about 10 minutes long, and is bound to keep you limber and feeling good, serving as a good compliment to your workout.
There you, have it, a wide variety of kettlebell workouts for women to choose from and to help you create the perfect workout for you!