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The Kettlebell Workout With Research-Proven Results

The kettlebell snatch may be one of the best cardio exercises there is—yes, cardio!

Runners like to scoff at weightlifters’ “cardio poor” routines. But as it turns out, lifters who use kettlebells are actually getting a great cardio workout.

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A study of college soccer players showed that adding a simple, dynamic, high-intensity kettlebell-snatch routine (15 seconds on, 15 seconds off for 20 minutes) to their workouts increased their VO2 max by about 6% over a control group doing the same free-weight and body-weight circuit exercises but without kettlebells, the Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research reports.

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“Kettlebells are an awesome conditioning tool,” says study head J. Asher Falatic, M.S. “Basic swings with moderate to heavy weight would be a great way to ease KB training into your workout.” 

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