In-Depth: The Kettlebell Swing

In-Depth: The Kettlebell Swing from Steve Bechtel on Vimeo.

We use this exercise with almost all of our athletes, almost all the time. The kettlebell swing is a great exercise for lower body power development and integration of movement. Start with the ‘bell on the ground a foot or more in front of you, then reach down and “hike” the bell back to start the reps. When swinging, only squat enough to get the bell between the legs (handle passing above the knees) and snap the hips forward to raise the kettlebell to the height of the sternum. Swinging higher in the so-called “American swing” actually diminishes the power component of the exercise, making it an easy knee-dominant movement instead of a hip dominant move. Many coaches caution against swinging overhead due to the dynamic lumbar flexion that most athletes exhibit at the top of the move.