Kettlebell Kings Blog

Kettlebell Color Coding

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Nov 8, 2016 10:33:43 PM

 


Have seen you seen kettlebells with colors and wondered what those are about?

We have a lot of colored kettlebells and when we post them to social media, people frequently ask questions about the color designs so we thought we would tell you why. 

There are a few explanations.  The origins of the color coding is in competitive kettlebell lifting in which there are international standards for specific weights, but color coding kettlebells is also an easy way to designate specific weights in your gym.  If you run a gym, color coding your kettlebells is a great way to tell clients which kettlebell they need to grab instead of having them sift through all the bells.  Below, we will go over the international color code if you need ideas and want to follow the standard. 

Some of the more popular traditional style kettlebells available today, including our Powder Coat Kettlebells, have colored bands on the handles to indicate the weight.  However, if you have traditional black kettlebells you could use paint or electrical tape to create similar markings on the kettlebells.

Competition style bells are usually all one color (pictured below) indicating the weight. These bells are used in competitive lifting in which lifters compete in weight classes in three specific kettlebell lifts. You can read more about that style of lifting here.

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See color coding below!

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Topics: kettlebell sport, Tips

What Kind Of Kettlebell Should You Use?

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Sep 22, 2016 7:09:46 PM

Kettlebell Kings partners with kettlebell and fitness experts to create helpful and informative posts designed to maximize your kettlebell experience.  Tim Peterson, Chief Instructor for FitRanX, has created a great post for us about selecting your kettlebell.  Specifically, the difference between traditional cast iron kettlebells and competition style kettlebells and what lifts work best with different types.  Although kettlebells are fairly mainstream workout equipment now, most lifters are stilll unfamiliar with competition style kettlebells. So, should you consider one? Read below!

By Tim Peterson:

There is an oft used phrase, that you always want to use the “right tool for the job.”  This phrase could not be more true in the world of strength and conditioning.  Kettlebells are a great tool, that can be used for strength work, hypertrophy, conditioning, power, and endurance.  But there are many different kinds of kettlebells, so how do you choose?

Types of Kettlebells

Cast iron, competition/sport, steel, rubber coated, soft-sand filled, adjustable, medicine ball-like, and more.  In addition, you can find them in pounds or kilograms, further adding to the choices.  All kettlebells are cast in a mold, what happens after can be different depending on the company.  Do your due diligence, as all kettlebells are not made equal.

Kettlebell Kings has different types of kettlebells and is known for quality!

See the Bells!

After you read about which type of kettlebell you need, we have a great post about determining which weight you need to train with HERE. If you already know you can view the bells through the link above!

I will be focusing on the two most common, the cast-iron, and competition/sport style kettlebell.  These can both be found in both pound and kilogram weights.  Personally, I use both, for different uses.  Each style has its own strengths and weaknesses, and I will address each. 

Cast iron kettlebells are widely regarded as the “original” kettlebells, with histories going back centuries.  Depending on who you ask, you will get different folk stories of what they originally were made from, and what they were used for, as well as which countries claim ownership. 

Cast iron kettlebells are made out of molten iron, and range widely in size, depending on weight.  They have a curved handle, that can also vary widely in width as well as diameter.  The cast-iron kettlebell is solid, with no hollow space.

Competition kettlebells get their name from the fact that they are used in Girevoy Sport, also known as GS or Kettlebell Sport.  GS focuses on two lifts, the Clean & Jerk and Snatch. 

The competition kettlebell is the same size and dimension across the weight range, and is made out of steel.  The handle is flat across on top, and joins the body of the kettlebell vertically.  These are made a couple of different ways. Some brands are an 8 kilogram shell filled with fillers like sawdust and ball bearings to achieve the desired weights, this potentially can become loose and rattle over time or lose balance. More durable competition bells are made from a single piece of steel, cast precisely to the specific weight.  You can identify these because they will have an opening in the bottom which you can look into and actually see the thickness of the steel mold.

There are 6 most common kettlebell lifts.  There are ballistics such as Swings, Cleans and Snatches, and grinds, such as Goblet and Double Front Squats, Presses, and Get-Ups.  There are many other kettlebell lifts and variations, however I will focus on these six. 

Different Kettlebells For Different Lifts

When teaching a beginner, the kettlebell and its lifts can be scary and intimidating.  For this reason, it may be better to start with a cast-iron 8kg kettlebell rather than a competition 8kg kettlebell, as the cast-iron 8kg is tiny by comparison.  There is a benefit to using kilograms rather than pounds as well.  Mentally, since “8” is less than “18,” the 8kg kettlebell will feel easier to lift than an 18lb kettlebell. 

  • Swings, When teaching two hand swings, it can be a toss-up as to which style kettlebell to use.  On one hand, the curved handle of a cast-iron kettlebell is easier to hold than the flat-handled competition kettlebell, however, since the handle’s vary in size depending on the weight of the cast-iron kettlebell, the lighter weight kettlebell’s have very narrow handles which are difficult to hold with two hands.  Once beyond the learning phase, the curved handle of the cast-iron kettlebell is the clear winner for swings.
  • Goblet Squats, The curved handle of a cast-iron kettlebell is also preferred when performing Goblet Squats.  Since the handle remains the same diameter all the way to the body of the kettlebell, the hand can get a firm grip on the handle, while the curve of the handle allows the wrist to stay more in line with the forearm. 
  • Cleans, When performing double cleans, (or double swings or double snatches) an interesting thing can happen when using very light competition style weights.  Since the kettlebell is hollow, the walls of the kettlebell must be thin.  As a result, if the kettlebell’s contact each other on the way up or down they will have a tendency to bounce off of each other like basketballs.  As they get heavier this happens less and less, but it must be addressed with beginners or anyone using lighter weights.  The last thing you want is for the kettlebells to bounce away from each other on the way down and hit the user on the legs.  Another item to consider is that when hiking two large kettlebell’s through the legs, regardless of weight, the stance used needs to be wide enough to allow room for them to pass. 

Kettlebell Kings has different types of kettlebells and is known for quality!

See the Bells!

After you read about which type of kettlebell you need, we have a great post about determining which weight you need to train with HERE. If you already know you can view the bells through the link above!

Having said all of that, competition style kettlebells are the kettlebell to choose when doing anything that puts the body of the kettlebell against the forearm.  Whether it be a lift that puts the kettlebell in the rack position (cleans, presses, front squats) or simply contacts the forearm (get-ups, snatches), the consistent size of a competition kettlebell puts the kettlebell in the same position every time.  More importantly, and again something that affects beginners more than experienced lifters, is that the larger size body rests on the meat of the forearm rather than the bone protrusion of the wrist, which is right where the smaller body of a lighter kettlebell will sit.  The tiny body of a 4kg kettlebell will hit the back of the hand, while an 8kg kettlebell will hit right on the back of the wrist.  Even a 12kg or 16kg kettlebell will hit a male on the wrist bones. 

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Topics: Tips

The Most Comprehensive Kettlebell Review Ever

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Sep 14, 2016 8:51:59 PM

There are quite a number of kettlebell comparisons on the internet, but the one by Fitness Test Lab, might be the most thorough one we have ever come across. Eight different brands were evaluated on a number of different factors and we are really happy with where we came out compared to other brands. There are a few other high quality brands out there, so we have worked really hard to create a great customer experience with Free and Fast Shipping to go with our kettlebells and help differentiate our offering. It it nice to be recognized for the hard work we put in to create our kettlebells.  If you take a look at this comparison you will find that we compare well with any brand out there.

Read the Most Comprehensive Kettlebell Comparison EVER!

Fitness Test Lab evaluated the different brands based on:

  • Usability, this includes finish, coating and handle size
  • Durability
  • Price

Fitness Test Lab evaluated the different kettlebells by testing them through workouts, the workouts included:

  • 100 two hand swings in under 5 minutes
  • 100 snatches in under 5 minutes, switch arms every 10 reps
  • 5x5x5 one hand complex – 5 rounds of 5 reps of each of the following 5 exercises, performed once on each side for a total of ten sets, in under 10 minutes:
    • One hand swing
    • Snatch
    • Clean + overhead press
    • Squat
  • Turkish get up, 10 reps each side – not timed
  • Windmills, 2 sets of 5 reps each side – not timed

kettlebell workouts

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Topics: Tips

Kettlebell Comparison: Kettlebell Kings & Rogue Kettlebells

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Aug 10, 2016 3:17:22 PM

Powder Coat Kettlebell Comparison

We work extremely hard to create some of the best kettlebells available in the United States. This is done through a rigorous process of research and development, customer feedback and quality control with our manufacturer. As we enter our third year in business we are really happy that our work has resulted in the over 1,000 Five Star Reviews

Part of our feedback process is monitoring different platforms for comments and reviews of our products. Recently, we came across a comparison on Reddit in which a user who has purchased from Kettlebell Kings as well as Rogue Fitness, did a review of both Powder Coat Kettlebells side by side. We wanted to share that review here.  We are honored that someone would compare our kettlebells to Rogue, an industry leader known for providing quality products and service, as we have worked to perfect those same things in our company.

The reviewer evaluated the kettlebells on:

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Topics: Tips

Kettlebell Guide: What Is A Pood?

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Aug 5, 2016 3:59:41 PM

What is a Pood?

This is common question for folks new to kettlebell, especially if you have been getting your workouts from Crossfit. 'Pood' originated in Russia along with kettlebells and is a unit of measurement for kettlebells in Russia. More specifically it is a unit equal to 40 funt (фунт, Russian Pound). A funt is a Russian pound

What is a Pood in Kilograms and Pounds?

  • It is approximately 16.38 kilograms.  A kilogram is 2.2 pounds. So one pood is also 36.11 pounds.

Often times you will see a Crossfit workout call for 1 Pood, 1.5 Pood or 2 Pood. So, the common kettlebell weights closest to this would be a 16 Kg Kettlebell, 24 Kilogram Kettlebell and a 32 Kilogram Kettlebell respectively. 

kettlebell workouts

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Topics: Tips

Introducing Steel Standard Kettlebells

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Jun 22, 2016 4:21:39 PM

You might think selling kettlebells is a pretty standard operation, but like any business that seeks to meet customer needs and innovate that is not the only case. Not only do we strive to create kettlebells with perfect dimensions and high quality, but we also try to innovate with our kettlebells as much as possible. So we do have a few different kettlebell products that are completely original to Kettlebell Kings or that we were the first to carry. Our efforts have led to the release of our Adjustable Kettlebells and Kettlebell Sport Series, both of which have been very popular and now our Black Steel Standard Kettlebells

What We Desired To Create:

  • an affordable/high quality kettlebell different than what people are used to

  • introduce kettlebell enthusiasts to competition style bells

    • all kettlebells in this series are the same size and dimensions regardless of weight. Even though kettlebells are fairly mainstream, most folks are not familiar with competition style bells. Training with bells that are the same size and shape regardless of weight creates a more uniform experience as your hands, wrists and forearms will always fit the bell the same way regardless of weight. All handle diameters are 33mm.

  • a model that looks different from our traditional competition style bells

    • competition bells are colored to an international standard, we thought some customers might not like being forced to buy a particular color because that is the training weight they need

  • weight increments more people are familiar with

    • a lot of lifters still hesitate when they see kilograms. Most of us have trained our whole lives with 'American style' five pound increments. So for this reason a lot of people forego high quality kettlebell options for lesser quality because of the unfamiliarity with the weight increments

  • an easy way to identify weights

    • color coding is valuable for easy identification of weights in the gym, even though we made the kettlebells all black we still have colored bands on the handles as well as the weight imprinted on the band so you can easily identify a weight among all your other kettlebells

WHAT WE CAME UP WITH:

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Topics: Tips

How To Choose The Right Kettlebell

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on May 18, 2016 9:24:00 PM

There are a lot of different types of kettlebells you can purchase. How do you decide which one is right for you? Well, what is important? Is it cost, quality, training style or some mixture of those? Whether it is your first kettlebell or you are adding to a collection it can be a tough decision based on knowledge, budget or your style of training.

To help with your process, we have created a quick, comprehensive guide that will walk you through the decision process so that you can make a decision for yourself about what you need. 

Get The Guide to Choosing a KettlebellLearn:

  • pounds versus kilograms
  • different price points
  • what makes your investment last
  • types of paint and how it affects your workouts
  • how kettlebells are made and how it affects your workouts
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Topics: Tips

The Kettlebell Order By Kettlebell Movement

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Apr 26, 2016 1:11:48 PM

Peter Hirsh from Kettlebell Movement is one of our go to experts for traditional kettlebell training. He runs a great site at Kettlebellmovement.com. Where he has lots of great video content, how-to's and diet and exercise programs. We highly recommend checking it out.

We asked Peter to write a blog post for us about a topic of his choosing. Whenever we ask someone to write for us we like to give them creative freedom as they interact with clients on a daily basis and we let that be the guide for what they think would be most helpful. Here is what Peter created for us:

Kettlebell training isn’t easy. Not only is it physically very demanding, but it also requires a great deal of body awareness that is usually only achieved through many months or years of practice. If you have a history in dance, martial arts or other skilled physical activity you will take to kettlebell training much more quickly, as it correlates directly to almost all sports. However, if you are beginning from scratch, there is a good chance that you are feeling a certain degree of awkwardness about certain aspects of your training and are constantly working to improve the movements. I aim to assist you with with that awkwardness today. 

For many people, a lack of flexibility will stand in the way of good technique in one way or another. Tight hamstrings may cause you to flex your back when you are in a deep hip bend, tight hip flexors will prevent you from hip extending far enough and tight shoulders and lats will prevent you from lifting your arms overhead. Tightness in the thoracic spine will make your kettlebell lifting less efficient and more injury prone and is not only common but also often overlooked. 

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Even if flexibility isn’t too much of a problem for you, the key to making everything feel more natural in your training is by going through the proper progressions. The proper progressions will both help you develop flexibility and the best motor patterns for the job. 

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Topics: Kettlebell Workouts, Training Methods, Kettlebell Technique, Tips

Stretching For Kettlebell Lifting

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Mar 9, 2016 8:42:51 PM

If you feel like most people you probably think stretching takes to much time and cuts into your workout. Stretching does time and can be boring, but you should think of it is as part of your workout because it enhances your workout and helps you reach your strength and fitness goals.

Doug Seamans from Pride Conditioning has created a great video for us to show different dynamic stretches you can do before lifting kettlebells. These stretches are designed to warm up your joints and connective tissue which is something most people fail to do with only a few minutes of jump rope, squats, foam rollers or stick work.

There a number of benefits to stretching:
1) reduce tension in muscles
2) increased range of motion
3) increased energy and blood circulation

All three of those contribute to a better workout, no matter what equipment you are using. We recommend adding all or just a few of these movements to your pre-workout routine in order to improve your strength and fitness.

Take a look at the video below, there are quite a number of stretches, you can pick and choose a few you like and then below the video are some tips that Doug wrote out for the various stretches.

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Topics: Stretching, Tips

What Are Your Goals For 2016?

Posted by Kettlebell Kings on Dec 28, 2015 5:48:27 PM

Sign up below! You will not be added to any solicitation list or anything like that, we simply will just send you a handful of e-mail reminders throughout the year to help you get on track and stay on track with some tips! We all need help with accountability sometimes! Let us know how we can help.

Remind Me In 2016!

Countless studies have shown the importance of setting goals in your personal and professional life. We are big believers in that at Kettlebell Kings and are very fortunate to have accomplished our main goals for ourselves and our company in 2015. While thinking about 2016 we decided we want our followers to set goals for themselves as well, so we thought we would post about it. Feel free to post your goals to our comments section below as a way to hold yourself accountable to them.

Also, you can sign up for our 'reminder' list in which we will check in with you through out the year to help!

They can be:

  • personal
  • fitness/lifestyle related
  • work related
  • anything else you can think of!
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Topics: Tips