Updated: Nov 16, 2020
CrossFit is a great way to boost your fitness by incorporating more modal domains and movements than almost any other fitness programming in the world.
With this comprehensive list of movements involves many done with kettlebells. There is a wide range of CrossFit kettlebell workouts for beginners to help introduce the different movement patterns to those with less experience.
What are kettlebells?
Kettlebells are a spherical weight with a handle on the top. With varying weights, the kettlebell is a great way to boost your fitness and strength and to include in your next CrossFit workouts (or WODS).
There are many different movements that you can do with a kettlebell including a kettlebell swing, Turkish get-up and kettlebell deadlift to name a few.
The kettlebell is such a versatile piece of workout equipment that you may find that there are more CrossFit kettlebell workouts than you may think.
CrossFit workouts often include kettlebells because of this versatility and because they are so readily available. Not only that but kettlebells when used properly help with core stability as they work both the sagittal and frontal planes, forcing you to use your core to activate.
If you are picking up a kettlebell for the first time I would recommend having a CrossFit coach or PT training you through the wide range of movements to ensure correct form. If you don't have that option then please research the techniques online and ensure you are doing your best to replicate that perfect form.
As a beginner, CrossFit kettlebell workouts may be very challenging so make sure you use the correct weight for you and that you know how to perform the movements correctly.
One good technique I have learnt is to film yourself whilst performing the movement then comparing that film with the perfect technique video and correcting your form accordingly.
What muscles do CrossFit kettlebell workouts work?
Depending on the movement, kettlebell workouts can work the whole body just like a dumbell or a barbell.
For example, the kettlebell swing (one of the most popular CrossFit kettlebell exercises) works your lower back, glutes and hamstrings to drive the kettlebell up and shoulders and lats to control the kettlebell at the top of the swing.
However, the main advantage of using kettlebells in CrossFit workouts is that it not only has the ability to build muscle mass but also increase overall fitness and cardiovascular capacity through heart rate raising kettlebell workouts.
To get you started here are some great CrossFit kettlebell workouts for beginners
Before you start your CrossFit workouts with kettlebells, make sure you warm up properly and effectively. Don't forget to activate and mobilise the muscle groups you are targetting and also include a pulse raising exercise too.
4 rounds of:
1 minute Push Press
1 minute Overhead Kettlebell Swings
1 minute Barbell Lunge Front Rack
1 minute Sit-Ups
1 minute break
Alternate sides on lunches. Each lunge step counts as a rep. 1L + 1R is 2 reps.
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Secret Service Snatch Test
10 minute AMRAP
This is a great, simple kettlebell workout to get your heart racing. Make sure your technique is perfect on each rep to avoid injury.
CrossFit kettlebell workouts for beginners are likely to be as simple as this, but this is where adaptation happens, at the right intensity. A kettlebell workout like the Secret Service Snatch Test will increase your heart rate rapidly so the key is to pace yourself by having a clock or timer within view to see how much time you have left.
Big Poppa Pump
50-40-30-20-10 reps of:
Get your pump on with this workout and come out of the box looking swole! Push ups and rows will activate your shoulder, triceps, back and biceps, all of the beach muscles you are looking to get your CrossFit workout gains in.
AMRAP in 12 minutes:
8 Single-Arm Alternating Kettlebell Snatches
With this type of all-round CrossFit workout, you'll feel fatigued quickly so pace yourself and get through it!
Kettlebells are a great and versatile piece of equipment that every CrossFitter should master, whether that is in or out of the gym.
CrossFit kettlebell workouts for beginners are simple but effective. Try them out and let me know how you have got on in the comments below.