The kettlebell swing is one of the most effective yet poorly executed moves out there. When done right, it can improve your overall conditioning, strength, calorie burn, and power. But when done wrong, it can obliterate your back, waste your time and leave you frustrated. So how do you perfect the kettlebell swing and get the most of this amazing exercise? I have five quick tips to help!
- Know the fundamentals: Don’t be afraid to ask for help and get proper instruction before performing a kettlebell swing. If you want to perfect it, then practice, practice and practice some more. Many people make the mistake of squatting instead of hinging at the hips and perform American kettlebell swings, where the kettlebell ends up directly above the head, shoulders close to the jawline and ears. Unfortunately, most of us don’t have the mobility or body control to perform an effective American swing and should stick to the powerful Russian kettlebell swing.
- Get grounded: If you’re flying all over the place and can’t ground your feet during the swing, stop what you’re doing and either get some help or switch to another exercise. Being balanced and choosing shoes that don’t interfere with your ability to securely and powerfully swing a kettlebell is usually recommended; this will also help you perfect the kettlebell swing by improving your overall control and keeping you safer.
- Hips, hips, and more hips: A lot of the top kettlebell experts suggest driving your hips in such a manner during the swing that they arrive first. Ideally, your core connects in unison with your hip thrust and powerful knee extension. If your hips aren’t being utilized in a powerful manner during the kettlebell swing, then you aren’t correctly performing this exercise.
- Squeeze your buns: Keep your spine safer, ensure optimal power and drive your hips through with the help of your strong glutes. Contract them throughout the swing, and you’ll be happy with the results.
- Don’t neglect the neck and shoulders: If you want help to perfect your swing, remember to keep your spine in alignment. Make sure your shoulders are “down” and engaged without shrugging during the swing. And keep your neck in alignment with the rest of your spine as you swing too!