Why Kettlebells are perfect for weight loss and weight management
In my last blog (https://www.westlondonfitness.co.uk/blog/how-resistance-training-helps-you-lose-weight-2/) I spoke about the importance of strength or resistance training for sustainable weight loss. One of the most effective and convenient ways of fitting this in to your schedule is without a doubt Kettlebell training. For those of you who are not familiar with a kettlebell they look like this
Please do not be intimidated as I promise you that if you embrace the kettlebell as part of your weekly activity routine, the versatility of this small piece of metal and the way it allows you to move can prove to be one of the most useful tools in your weight loss or weight management programme. Let me explain why.
At our studio in West London we have many Kettlebells ranging from 4kg all the way up to 40kg. We have male and female clients executing various exercises with an age range of 16 to 75 years old. The primary exercises that are so functionally good for people are The Swing, The Deadlift and The Front Squat however there are so many more exercises that you can do once you have mastered the basic technique and you start to get fitter and stronger. The swing itself provides a fantastic two into one exercise and is a perfect example of the uniqueness of kettlebell training. It combines the benefits of resistance training cardiovascular conditioning in one very powerful exercise. The Swing, as with most Kettlebell exercises is a total body exercise. This allows you to achieve total body strengthening and conditioning with one single tool. It is these big compound movements that activate so many muscles enabling a better hormone response as well as energy consumption during and after exercise. The shape of the Kettlebell forces your body to use more muscles as you train as the weight offsets its centre of gravity. Using more muscles essentially means burning more calories as well as toning up those muscles. The very nature of a kettlebell workout and the exercises you perform will challenge your stability and core muscles, be neurologically demanding and provide you with better anatomical alignment.
Kettlebells can prove to be a very time efficient way of getting activity into your week if you are struggling to fit everything in. They are easy to use at home, do not take up much space and it is possible to get an effective total body workout in 20-30 minutes. For a weight loss programme or maintenance programme I would recommend a 6kg bell for women and an 8kg-10kg for men. However as you become more experienced it is worth investing in heavier bells for certain exercises, you will not need any more than 3 Kettlebells in the long term. They are very cost effective, a 6kg kettlebell should cost around £15 and an 8kg around £20. In my opinion the solid metal, cast iron bells are much easier to use than the plastic ones that are on the market.
Always be careful to perfect your technique. If your back is tightening then you are probably not performing the exercises correctly. If you have any problems with your back make sure you see a trainer first to discuss whether they think it is advisable for you to do or not and preferably invest in some sessions for them to teach you great form and technique.
Jamie Lea – Personal Trainer – West London Fitness
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