28 kettlebell exercises for each body part you can master in 2022

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You can use a kettlebell to target each body part, this guide will give you a fair range of options come each workout day. You will also find complete video tutorials for these kettlebell exercises you can learn and add to your training today!

The following is a breakdown of the exercises for each body part:

If you’re just getting started with your fitness journey, there are many simple and easy kettlebell exercises for beginners, such as:

Once you have the basics down and feel comfortable handling the bell, you can also learn some of these traditional kettlebell exercises:

We’ve created a list of the best kettlebell exercises that target different parts of the body. Keep this exercise guide handy when you’re creating your next kettlebell workout routine at the gym or at home.

Chest exercises with a kettlebell

Floor press

Place the bell on the floor and lay down next to it. Roll on to your side and grip the handle from underneath. Roll on to your back. Your elbow should be 45 degrees away from your body. Brace and press the bell up. The bell should finish above your shoulder. Bring your elbow back down to tap the floor and press up.

The floor press can be adapted in various ways. You can take it from the floor to a bench or you can work out one arm at a time or both.

Push ups

Kettlebell push ups take your standard push up to the next level. Rather than pushing up from the floor, grab the handle of each kettlebell and get into the push up position. Lower your body and drive up.

Kettlebell back exercises

For this section, we mean the posterior chain. The kettlebell has numerous benefits but a big one is the level of attention you can put to your posterior chain, posture and back. That’s probably why I recommend a kettlebell being the first piece of equipment to purchase for any at home workouts.

Lunge rows

A lunge row with a kettlebell is a simple exercise you can perform that doesn’t take up much space. Place your foot beside your bell and take a big lunge step back with the other leg. Grab the handle of the bell and pull the bell up. Focus on rowing into your hip so that your shoulder pulls the full range.

Renegade Row

Starting on top of two kettlebells in a push up position, row a single kettlebell to your hip. To help the movement you will need to have your feet wide enough that you don’t lose balance or stability

Single arm deadlift (asymmetrical deadlift)

The single arm deadlift is one of the many variations of a kettlebell deadlift. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and place the bell on the floor between your legs. Hinge forward and grab the handle of the bell with one hand. Squeeze your glutes and reverse the hinge to return to the standing position.

Reverse the movement and return the bell to the floor. Focus on keeping your back straight during the exercise. Repeat with the other arm.

Single leg deadlift

Hold your bell by the handle on one side of your body. Hinge down whilst extending one leg back and lowering your bell to the floor. Reverse the hinge and return to the standing position.

The side you pick for your bell will determine the difficulty of the movement. If your bell is on the opposite side of your extended leg, this is the more difficult version. Remember to focus on control rather than depth.

Kettlebell swing

The kettlebell swing is a staple exercise that is a hybrid of resistance training and cardio. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and place the bell on the floor about a foot’s length in front of you. Hinge forward and grasp the handle of the bell with both hands. Keep your weight shifted to your heels and pretend you’re hiking the bell.

Drive your hips forward and move into a standing position while swinging the bell up to shoulder height. Reverse the movement and allow the bell to fall between your legs and repeat the swing.

For more tips on how to master your swing form, check out the article: How to master your kettlebell swing form with these 6 steps.

Single arm swing

The single or one arm kettlebell swing is a variation of the standard two arm kettlebell swing. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and place the bell on the floor about a foot length in front of you. Hinge forward and grasp the handle with one hand. Extend your unloaded arm out from your side. Keep your weight shifted to your heels and swing the bell back between your legs. Drive your hips forward and move into a standing position while swinging the bell up to shoulder height. Reverse the movement and let the bell fall between your legs. Repeat the swing.

Kettlebell clean

The kettlebell clean is an explosive movement that is the basis for most kettlebell exercises. Stand a foot length back from your bell. The bell should be in the instep of the side you are performing the movement. Hinge forward and grasp the bell with one hand. Shifting the weight back to your heels, swing the bell between your legs.

Reverse and hinge and pop your hips. As you get into the standing position, pull your bell arm up while keeping the bell close to your body. Quickly punch through the top of the movement to allow your bell to come back into the rack position. Reverse the steps and return the bell to the floor.

For more tips on how to master your clean form, check out the article: 6 tips to master the kettlebell clean.

Kettlebell exercises for arms

Lunge rows

A lunge row with a kettlebell is a simple exercise you can perform that doesn’t take up much space. Place your foot beside your bell and take a big lunge step back with the other leg. Grab the handle of the bell and pull the bell up. Focus on rowing into your hip so that your shoulder pulls the full range.

Floor press

As outlined above, the floor press with a kettlebell is not only a great exercise for the chest, but it also works out your arms too. Try performing the exercise on a bench or focus on one arm at a time.

Kettlebell press

The kettlebell press isn’t just as simple as grabbing a bell and pressing it over your head repeatedly, that’s a recipe for injury! As with any exercise, it must be practised with proper form. Start with the kettlebell in the rack position. Ensure your elbow is tucked in close to your body. Press the bell directly over your head into the straight arm position. Reverse the movement and lower the bell back to the rack position.

Kettlebell shoulder exercises

For shoulder exercises, nothing beats the range of mobility, stability and strength based movements you can do with kettlebells. In this section, we’re going to focus on mobility and stability kettlebell exercises.

Halo

Start in a half kneeling or tall kneeling position. Turn the bell upside down and grip the handle so your hands are on either side of the handle. Your chin should be in line with the bottom of the bell. Maintain an upright position and pass the bell around your head. Repeat and change directions.

Kettlebell windmill

The kettlebell windmill is a great exercise that emphasises shoulder mobility. Begin with your kettlebell in the rack position and then perform a press. Pivot your feet on 45 degrees facing the same way. Extend your other arm down the inside of your thigh until your fingers reach the floor. At the same time, hinge your upper body down. Keep your lat sucked to the hip throughout the movement. Reverse and return to the top of the movement.

Check out our article for some helpful tips on how to master the kettlebell windmill.

Turkish get up

The Turkish get up is a well-known exercise for shoulder stability. Start on the floor lying on your right side with your bell in front of your stomach. Grasp the bell with your right hand and roll on to your back with your legs at a 45 degree angle. Your right leg should be bent with your foot on the floor. Extend your arm and press the bell up. Drive your body up and across into the post position. Pivot your hand on your unloaded arm to get to the tall sitting position.

Move into the bridge position and sweep your leg under your hips and get into the side kneeling position. Your hand, knee, and foot should all be in line with each other on the back side. Come up into the half kneeling position and windshield wiper your foot so that you are in a lunge position. Lunge up into the standing position. Reverse the movement and come back down to the start.

Read our article for 5 tips on how to perfect your Turkish get up form.

Double Kettlebell Press

Do kettlebells build muscle? They will if you can master the double kettlebell press. Once you have perfected the double kettlebell clean, squeeze the handles of both bells as tight as you can. Maintaining a vertical forearm just like the single kettlebell press, drive the kettlebells to the top position.

Bottoms Up Kettlebell Press

The bottoms up kettlebell press helps improve shoulder stability and strength. Crushing the handle of the kettlebell, clean the bell up to the rack position but so the bulb is facing the roof. Keep tension on the handle, drive the kettlebell to the overhead position.

Kettlebell core and abs exercises

Turkish get up

Earlier, we talked about the Turkish get as a great exercise for the shoulders. It’s also a great exercise for your core as it leads to better trunk stability and rotational stability. Remember that slow is smooth, smooth is fast. Take your time and engage your core when performing the movement.

Kettlebell windmill

We’ve discussed how the kettlebell windmill is great for shoulder mobility, but it’s also an excellent core exercise. When performing the windmill, focus on your rotation and make sure your feet are on that 45 degree angle.

Loaded Carry

Using a single or double kettlebells pick them up and walk. It’s that simple! You can change the position by moving from:

  • Farmers (beside the body)
  • Rack (the top position of your kettlebell clean)
  • Overhead

Pick what works for you for the distance you want to carry them. A simple kettlebell workout is trying to carry your kettlebells for maximum distance over a set time.

Kettlebell exercises for legs and glutes

Single arm deadlift

As with many kettlebell exercises, the single arm deadlift works multiple muscle groups in a single exercise. It’s a great exercise for your posterior chain and can help make everyday activities such as lifting things from the floor easier.  

There are many variations to this movement that will help to vary your workouts such as the suitcase deadlift, the kickstand deadlift, and the single leg deadlift.

Single leg deadlift

We’ve already gone through the single leg deadlift as a great back exercise, but it’s also beneficial for your hamstrings and glutes too. This exercise develops your balance on a single leg and can help you identify any imbalances as one side is often stronger than the other.

Once you have mastered the single leg deadlift, you can consider increasing the difficulty by using one kettlebell in each hand.

Goblet squat

The goblet squat is a great exercise, not just for the lower body but also to help maintain upright stability when you’re perfecting your squat form. Stay over the top of your bell and grab the handle with both hands. Drive up into a standing position. Squat down, pulling in with your hips into the bottom position. Your elbows should meet the inside of your knees. Drive up into the top position while maintaining an upright posture.

Single Kettlebell Rack Squat

With a single kettlebell in the rack position after finishing your clean, follow the same steps as the goblet squat. Be careful of the kettlebell trying to rotate you out of position with the uneven weight.

Double Kettlebell Squat

After a double kettlebell clean, pull in with the hips into the bottom of the movement. This time, be sure not let the kettlebells pull you forward.

Bottoms Up Kettlebell Squat

Just like the bottoms up kettlebell press, get a kettlebell into the rack position with the bulb of the bell facing the roof. Without letting the kettlebell rotate you out of position, squat down until you hit the right depth.

Overhead Kettlebell Squat

The ultimate expression of overhead mobility and stability with kettlebells. Clean or snatch a kettlebell overhead (you can also use double kettlebells). Maintaining the correct overhead position, squat down until the hips become parallel to the knees, if you have the range of motion go until you hit ass to grass.

Bulgarian Split Squats

The final type of squat exercise for your legs and glutes that I would recommend is the bulgarian split squat or “rear foot elevated” split squat. Why you may ask? If you’ve ever loaded up with heavy kettlebells and completed multiple sets of split squats, you would know by the feeling you get the next day. These are great for highlighting any asymmetries in the body to avoid injury but also great for hypertrophy of the glutes and legs.

Full Body Kettlebell Exercises

As you may have observed throughout this article, kettlebell movements are great full body exercises as one movement often targets multiple muscle groups. With kettlebell exercises like the Turkish get up, you can get a full body workout using just one kettlebell, or you can mix and match multiple exercises that we’ve discussed above to produce a well rounded workout routine.

Check out our Minimalist Kettlebell Workouts article for more.

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