Kettlebells vs. Dumbbells

Kettlebells have taken the fitness world by storm over the last few years, with most Gym’s making them available and even classes dedicated to the use of Kettlebells. So what’s so great about them? Should you switch to using a Kettlebell in your work outs?

Kettlebell

Read ahead and find out more.

Like Dumbells, Kettlebells offer varying results depending on how you use them.

Kettlebells are great when combined with cardio exercise as they offer the ability for extra range of motion by being able to swing them and can, depending on the exercises work a wider variety of muscle groups than other free weight exercises.

Word of caution; find a Kettlebell weight that’s suitable for swinging, otherwise you might end up hurting yourself, someone else or breaking something!

 

Some advantages of Kettlebells

  • Kettlebells sit better in the hand when performing exercises that ‘swing’, ‘snatch’ or ‘lift’ the weight.
  • Kettlebells Allow for a better cardio workout allowing for the ability to swing the kettlebell.

Some advantages of Dumbells

  • Sit better in the hand when performing more traditional exercises, particularly those that ‘press’ and ‘push’.
  • Better for strength exercises due to the ability to load and balance weight.

 

The thing to keep in mind here is that both Kettlebells and Dumbells are great. Neither of them are better than each other as they are different. Different in the way they are used, the muscle groups exercised and the results to be had.

There are certainly some free weight exercises that favour the use of Kettlebells and vice-versa. A few that came to mind we’re;

(Disclaimer: You should consult your trainer or a fitness expert before performing these exercises)

Kettlebell High Pull

Works out: Legs, Arms, Glutes, Shoulders

Placing the Kettlebell on the ground in between your legs, stand shoulder width apart and squat down to grab the Kettlebell. Push through your heels using the force of your hips to stand up, while driving your elbow up past your ear until your arm ends up in a ‘chicken-wing’ like position. Lower the Kettlebell back down to the ground. Repeat 10-15 times for each arm.

Kettlebell Back Row

Works out: Back

Find a bench, place your left knee and right hand on it and make sure your back is flat. Your hand should be directly under your shoulder, while your leg directly under your bum. Position your right leg out wide to balance. Pick up Kettlebell with right hand and pull up slowly keeping your right arm close to your body, then slowly lower the Kettlebell. Repeat 10-15 times, swap over to the other side.

Speak to your trainer about more Kettlebell exercises you can incorporate into your routine.

 

So would we recommend dumping the dumbells and moving to the Kettlebell revolution?

No. If anything, we’d recommend finding the right tool for the exercise and the result you’re looking for. In some exercises, a Kettlebell is interchangeable with a dumbbell, but it may provide a different end result due to the way it’s held in the hand and you would operate a Kettlebell.  As mentioned above, for the most part they have their own exercises that provide their own results and the use of Kettlebells should be considered with that in mind.

When in doubt, speak to the team and your fitness centre or personal trainer about what type of exercises you can substitute Kettlebells in for and what the difference in result might be.

Is Strength Training Right for You

Nowadays, you get to find people doing a lot of aerobics and cardio training just to keep them fit and equally maintain good health. Engaging in these activities for the sole purpose of staying fit and healthy is very good, but have you ever asked yourself if that is all it takes to stay healthy and still maintain a perfect body. Would these activities alone help you achieve that perfect body you are looking for? Do you think there could be something you are not doing? As an answer to these questions, results arrived from research conducted by health specialists have indicated that strength training is and should be a part of staying fit and staying healthy

Strength training helps you maintain your weight

This is one fact not too many people are aware of. When you engage in strength training, you gain muscles obviously, the muscle gain enables you have a much bigger body surface mass, which in turn makes you burn calories faster. In other words, you are able to lose more weight and control your added body mass when you do strength training.

Strength training increases your energy

Strength training helps you gain lean and toned muscles. The more your muscles are toned, the easier it will be for you to carry heavy loads and still maintain your balance. Your muscles are more compact after a normal workout, giving you a better stamina, which is always evident in your outward appearance.

It reduces the risk of sustaining injuries

When you engage in strength training coupled with other muscle toning exercises, your joints receive repetitive strain which helps them stay flexible. This way, you are more balanced, thereby reducing the risk of falling at the slightest push and sustaining unnecessary injuries.

Your bones get stronger

When you do a typical strength training workout or muscle building as the case may be, you give your bones the opportunity to increase in density. The continuous strain and stress laid upon the bones and muscles during strength training, helps to make the bones a lot stronger than normal. The more you do this, the more you reduce the possibility of increased dependence when you eventually become old.

The fact is strength training will compliment any exercise routine. It will help you attain your fitness goals faster and help you gain muscle tone. You will not appear to be just skinny or thin, you will look fit, toned, and let’s face it sexy.

Adjustable Weights

Those who work out regularly know how annoying it can be to have a pair of 5 pounds, 8 pounds, 10pounds, 12 pounds, 15 pounds, and 20 pound weights your living room or bedroom. What if there was an easier way to store them. What if you could find adjustable weights. So what is adjustable weights exactly? Adjustable weights are a weight set, dumbbells actually, that are adjustable usually in half pound increments. There is no need to have multiple dumbbells anymore. The adjust weights allow you to dial the weight you need and lift it and exercise.

The Cost

The cost of the weight set is varied. It will depend on which model you choose. There are models that are about $60 or as high as $500 for Bow flex models. The difference in price is about the features. The Reebok model weight only goes to 12.5 pounds where the Bow flex model weight goes from 2.5 pounds to 52 pounds. The Bow flex model replaces up to 30 dumbbells, making this model cost effective.

How to Use

Using the adjustable weights is not hard. You decide what weight you would like to use. Turn the dial on the end of the weight and lift the weight up and use. There is no assembly at all. It is ready to go right away. They are used just like the typical dumbbell sets.

Storing

Storing is easy. They store like they are one set. They can easily go under a bed, in a closet or in the corner of a living room. They are perfect for those homes that do not have much space. When lifting the whole unit to store the weights, take caution lifting. They whole weight set is heavy.

Investing in an adjustable weight set is a great option for the serious fitness person. It is a big investment but the bottom line is you are worth the investment. The result you will see with your new weight set will be amazing. Aside from the weight lifting results, it will save space and time. How many times have you struggled to get the clip off the bar. It can take five minutes or more to get the weight back on. At that time your heart rate has already come down, and you have to work harder now to get it back up. Simplify your workout by investing in yourself with adjustable weights.

25Jul
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Weight Lifting For Women

Weight lifting used to be considered a men exercise. Women would strictly do cardio to avoid having any muscles. They would strictly do running, walking, or aerobics. Women wanted to be very thin. That is a thing of the past. Now women want to have muscles, lifting heavy weights, and be fit not skinny.

Benefits to Lifting Weights

Women, and me as well, lift weights for the muscle definition. One of the biggest benefit to lifting weights is it burns fat. This helps by increasing your metabolism thus burning more calories in a day. This will translate to the person being able to eat more food. Lifting weight will also give you results you can see. You will see the muscle showing. You will feel stronger and able to do more in your strength workouts like pushups or pull-ups. Weight training should be incorporated in every exercise plan for two to three days a week.

Basics to Weightlifting

In order to successfully gain muscle mass you must be able to increase the weight gradually. You may start with 10 pounds, then add weight to 15 pounds, and so on. Another foundation is when lifting, you must isolate the muscle to force it to change. The last tip is allow the muscle rest time. The general rule is 48-72 hours rest between working the same muscle group. If you do not rest the muscle group you will risk injury and over training.

Overtraining

Over-training can be a real problem for many weight lifters. One of the most common reasons for overtraining is doing too much too soon. You must, allow your muscle time to rest. There are tell-tell signs of overtraining.

These symptoms are:

  • Fatigue or insomnia
  • Injuries
  • Headaches
  • Lack of energy to complete workouts

If you are not able to sleep, workout, or feel ill, you may be training too hard too soon. Try giving yourself a few days rest to see if your body recovers enough to be able to get back into working out daily again.

Lifting weights is a fun sport but, should be done safely. Consult a book or a personal trainer that can show you the correct way to lift. They can should you routines that will target certain muscle groups and develop a work out plan for you. When lifting weights it is also important to eat enough calories and protein to feed the muscle growth. If you feed yourself well, eat enough calories and fats, you will see amazing results.