Coach Mike Daley of Newell Strength offers several points of advice on the correct way to perform the kettlebell swing. For the sake of clarity, any time the term kettlebell swing is generalized, it’s typically referring to the Russian style. While we also recognize the benefits of the American swing, there can be no dispute over the fact that the Russian swing reigns king.
In a Facebook video posted to Newell Strength’s page, Mike answers a series of questions pertaining to the placement of the kettlebell during the swing and the correct position of the body at each step. In particular, he focuses on the right way to perform the hinge action. Some people have a tendency to squat when the kettlebell is at the bottom position of the swing. As explained in the video, your knees should only bend slightly when the bells are lowered with your back remaining straight throughout the entire exercise.
We have to give praise to Mike for his phrase attack the zipper. It’s a unique way of describing where the kettlebell should be in relation to being between the legs at the bottom of the swing. It’s a clever way of saying that the kettlebell should be very close to the groin area and buttocks during the downswing. Having it drop closer to the ground can cause a risk of injury.
How To Properly Perform the KB Swing
The Kettlebell swing is one of the exercises that very few people do right and even fewer 'experts' teach correctly. If you can do them correctly, they are a great exercise. Watch this 4 minute video where Coach Mike breaks it down.
Posted by Newell Strength on Thursday, November 1, 2018
Another Common Kettlebell Swing Mistake
We think it is also important to mention the proper lifting technique during the forward swing. Many people starting out with kettlebells (us included) believe that your arms should raise the kettlebell to chest level. This is in fact, incorrect. T Nation wrote an excellent article pointing out that it is the snap action of your hips and tightening of the glutes that power the upward swing. Your arms should act as an extension with no effort placed by them in raising the bell.
Following all these tips not only reduces the risk of injury but also increases the effectiveness of the kettlebell exercise itself. You should always strive to get the very most out of kettlebell workouts. Proper technique goes a long way to getting closer to your desired results more quickly.