Kettlebell Swing

The beauty of exercises such as the kettlebell swing is the simplicity of the move hides the power of the benefits. The swing is a basic exercise that can be performed alone or serve as a foundation exercise for other techniques.

Simple and Powerful

To complete the swing requires attention to body positioning and muscle control. The swing is considered one of the basic ballistic moves, and you must maintain the proper stance in order to control the weight from lift through swing.

The first position is assuming a stance that includes your feet placed shoulder width apart. You then go into a squat. A good squat looks like you're trying to find a chair seat with your butt without looking back.

Your squat should have soft knees, a butt pushed towards the back and your eyes forward. Don't drop your head or shoulders. Keep your back straight from neck to waist.

The kettlebell swing begins with you picking up the weight and swinging it back through your legs. Then swing the kettlebell forward. The hips are snapped forward and give momentum to the weight.

Throughout the kettlebell swing, keep the muscles in your body contracted. Tighten the hamstrings and the quads and even your core muscles. Swing the bell until it's straight out in front of you. Then you should let the weight fall downward.

Repetitions of this exercise involve thrusting and swinging several times in a row. Always keep your arms straight and don't forget to maintain concentration on you your body's muscles throughout the repetitions.

The kettlebell swing is not a fancy exercise, but it's effective like all kettlebell exercises.


There are variations to the swing that add power to the exercise. For example, you can switch arms with each set of repetitions. You can also do a double kettlebell swing. In the double kettlebell swing, two weights are swung between the legs and straight out.

Though the kettlebell swing appears to be an arm muscle exercise, it's actually a hamstring exercise. The power for the exercise comes from the hamstring and not the shoulders and arms. When you do a double kettlebell swing, you are doing a powerful ballistic exercise that will develop incredibly strong hamstrings.

Kettlebell foundation exercises not only get you ready to perform more advanced exercises. They also develop the muscles and body conditioning you need to advance in intensity and difficulty. The kettlebell is a powerful tool for working all the muscles in your body.

Most exercise programs focus on one thing at a time. You either work your arms or your legs or your abs. Each kettlebell exercise, like the kettlebell swing, utilizes many muscles at a time giving you more benefit for the time spent.