Coach Bronek | Kettlebell: what and why
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Kettlebell: what and why


The kettlebell is an iron or cast-iron weight that looks like a bowling or cannonball and usually has a flat base and a thick U-shaped handle attached. This rather odd-looking object is now frequently featured in numerous fitness magazines and American TV shows.

The original Russian kettlebells normally come in increments of a 1/2 pood – an old Russian weight measurement equivalent to 16kg (36lb) but they now come in a variety of weights allowing exercisers of any ability to use them. The standard weights are 8kg, 16kg, 24kg, 32kg, 40kg and 48kg. There are also smaller and in-between poundages available.

  • It burns fat… real fast!
  • It’s a whole-body strengthening and conditioning tool that trains virtually all your muscles simultaneously
  • It builds unprecedented functional strength in your grip, hips, back and shoulders
  • It develops explosive power and agility
  • It increases mental toughness
  • It enhances strength endurance
  • It tones up your arms and chisels your abs
  • It strengthens your core
  • It increases flexibility and the mobility of your joints
  • It improves coordination
  • It makes you tough… real tough!


Kettlebells have been around since the days of the ancient Greeks but kettlebell training as we know it today is of Russian origin and has been used in Eastern Bloc countries for centuries by the military,

police, athletes, wrestlers and fitness enthusiasts alike to develop strength, agility, power and endurance.

Although it first appeared in a Russian dictionary in 1704, nobody knows the exact origin of the kettlebell, although theories abound. One such theory is that the kettlebell started life as a weight used by farmers to weigh out quantities of goods on balance scales. Another theory is that the kettlebell was invented by the artillery branch of the military who added a handle to a cannonball in order to develop strength so they could load cannonballs more easily into their cannons.

Kettlebells proved popular with strongmen and wrestlers, such as Eugene Sandow, Georg Hackenschmidt, Arthur Saxon, Louis Cyr and Sig Klein. And in 1913, LudvigChaplinsky wrote the following in the Russian magazine ‘Hercules’: ‘Not a single sport develops our muscular strength and bodies like kettlebells.’
It was said that Soviet Special Operations (Spetznaz) attributed much of their strength, agility and stamina to kettlebells. The official armed forces strength- training manual declared that kettlebell drills were ‘one of the most effective means of strength development’ representing ‘a new era in the development of human strength potential.’

Kettlebells later became Russian’s national pastime and were considered more as a form of entertainment than a real sport. However, in 1974, many Soviet Republics recognised them as ‘an ethnic sport’. In 1985, a committee of kettlebell sport was established that formulated rules, regulations and weight categories and in November 1985 the First National Championship was held in Lipetsk, Russia.

Fifteen years later, in 2000, kettlebells were finally reintroduced into America. At present kettlebells are being used to train US Marines, Special Forces, the FBI and the Secret Service. They are increasingly being used by martial-arts fighters, firefighters, policemen and professional and competitive athletes are also becoming popular in the UK. As a matter of fact, nowadays, most gyms introduced them into their facilities and their programmes.


Never used a kettlebell before? Want to see what all the fuss is about? If you are interested in advancing to different level of your physical fitness, becoming lean, mean lifting machine CONTACT me now for more information and see whether we could help you with either your Kettlebells or your fitness.