A kettlebell is basically a cannonball with a handle. Simple but effective. Some say originating in Greece but most will say it’s a Russian invention.
Kettlebell training is something that has been around for centuries and is becoming more and more popular in the fitness world. I have been using kettlebells for around a year and took an instructor course earlier this year. The more I train with kettlebells the more benefits for golf I come across.
OK so here are 6 great reasons for you to learn the way of the Gireviks!
1. Grip Strength – Due to many reasons, such as the size of the handle, the nature of the exercise and the centre of gravity being off centre, kettlebell training will certainly boost your grip strength. An image of golfing legend Gary Player springs to mind, holding a wooden headed driver at the end of the grip, using only his middle and fourth finger! That takes massive grip strength!
2. Shoulder Stability – Again down to the nature of the exercises and strange centre of gravity, the shoulder stabiliser muscles are working constantly. Having strong shoulder stabiliser muscles probably won’t have you racing to the beach to show off how stable your shoulders are, but with golf being pretty harsh on all the joints in the body, having them stable is going to help keep you in good working order.
3. Power gains – Because a lot of kettlebell manoeuvres involve using multiple body parts to shift the weight quickly, power gains are most definitely on the cards. Power and strength are different. A strong muscle can move a heavy weight; a powerful muscle can move a heavy weight quickly. Having more powerful muscles will benefit almost any sport and add yards to all your clubs.
4. Fat burning – Kettlebell workouts can vary just like any other free weights training. Weight, reps, sets, timing and rest can all be varied to gain different results. Kettlebells owe their recent rise in popularity due to their brilliant fat-burning potential. By performing a series of exercises as a non-stop circuit, you can burn a ton of calories in no time at all. Dumbbells just can’t keep up!
5. Muscle tone – Traditional weight training often dictates you work a muscle until it gives out, then rest it for a week whilst you attack the rest of your muscles. The main target muscle is usually the prime mover. Kettlebells tend to work the stabiliser muscles as hard as the prime mover. This is one of the reasons an individual trained using kettlebells will have a leaner, toned look, compared to one trained using machines and free weights, who may appear more “bulgy”.
6. Home workouts – All you need is a kettlebell or two of a suitable weight (traditionally 8kg for women, 16kg for men), some space in your home, fairly high ceilings and 45 – 60 mins to spare. With those you can build all-over strength and power, burn fat and improve muscle tone.
Alright so there’s 6 reasons you should check out kettlebell training today. Grab life by the bells!
I’ll show you some cool exercises next week.