Kettlebell Swing

To do the Kettlebell Swing, set the kettlebell (or bell) down on the ground and slightly in front of you.

Hinge over, bending your knees slightly and pushing your butt back as you lean forward. Keep your back flat and then reach your arms out and place both hands on the handle, tilting the bell back toward you.

Hike the kettlebell back between your legs like you would a football. Pull it back and up between your legs toward your butt.

To power the bell up and forward, squeeze your glutes and drive your hips forward as you stand up nice and tall. Pop your hips forward and propel the kettlebell up off your hips.

Do not worry about how high the bell goes. It shouldn’t go higher than your shoulders.

Squeeze your glutes as you stand tall. You may lean back a little at the top, but make sure you are squeezing your glutes and not loading your low back.

Then, keep your glutes tight, wait as the bell comes back down before you hinge back over. Your forearms need to connect with your hips before you hinge back over and bring the bell back down and through your legs.

Do not lean forward and hinge over before the kettlebell comes back down. You want to maintain the connection between your hips and forearms to protect your low back. Also, don’t allow the kettlebell to sink low between your legs. You want the bell up close to your crotch.

As your forearms connect and you hinge over, sitting your butt back, make sure to lean forward to counterbalance the kettlebell going back through your legs. Let the kettlebell reach through toward the wall behind you. If the bell comes up and taps you in the butt, it may be too light.

Then squeeze your glutes again and thrust the kettlebell back up as you come back up to standing.

With the swing, you may keep a straighter leg or bend your knees a little as you swing. They are both acceptable just different styles.

Make sure to squeeze your glutes at the top of each swing and make sure you don’t come up onto your toes. While you may lean back a little, you don’t want to lean back and load your low back. You should not feel this move in your low back at all.

Maintaining the connection between your forearms and hips as you hinge is essential for keeping your glutes working and your low back from feeling strained. Do not sit your butt back while the kettlebell is still out in front of you. You almost want the kettlebell to be pulling you back and that is why you are hinging over.

The hinge is a reaction to the bell instead of you anticipating the kettlebell coming back down and hinging over before it lowers.

Start small with the swing to focus on the connection. You don’t have to get the kettlebell all the way up to your chest to get a lot out of the movement.