Core 4 Functional Movements for Physical Health Continued.

Welcome back to the Core 4

When putting together an exercise plan there are thousands of exercises and pieces of equipment to choose from.  The variety tends to be overwhelming for most people especially those who do not have much exposure to functional exercise.

I am a big proponent of teaching people how to move well, move often, and keep it simple.  You do not need expensive pieces of equipment, vast knowledge of strength and conditioning, or 3 hours per day to get a solid workout in.  In fact, the likelihood is that the simpler the movements and routine are the better your results will be.  This is why, apart from using your own bodyweight, I am a big fan of kettlebells. 

The main reasons I love kettlebells is that they are simple, functional, portable, and can be used in many different ways.  In this post, I have featured the second half of my core 4 kettlebell movements for health that you can use to base your training from.

  1. The Kettlebell Deadlift

Very simply, this movement is picking up the bell from the ground and standing up with it.  However, there is much more to this movement than meets the eye.

Here are the following points to follow when doing a kettlebell deadlift:

  • Start with the bell between your legs that are placed shoulder width apart, toes pointed forward, and feet rooted firmly to the ground.
  • Before starting the movement be sure to set your brace by increasing your intra-abdominal pressure all the way around your mid-section.
  • Send your hips back and sink down towards the bell until you can grasp with both hands.
  • While maintaining tension all the way through your body, set your lats by depressing your shoulders and squeezing your arm-pits together.
  • You should feel very tense through your whole body at this point and now you are ready to explosively stand up by pressing your hips forward while maintaining tension throughout your body and squeeze your glutes forcefully.
  • Re-set your brace and return the bell to the ground, rinse and repeat.

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  1. The Kettlebell Goblet Squat

This is a squat using the kettlebell for resistance by holding the bell in front of your chest.

  • Set up just like a kettlebell deadlift
  • Instead of standing up with the kettlebell you will forcefully send the bell upwards and catch the handles towards the sides of the bell.
  • Hold the bell close to your chest with your back tight and a braced core.
  • Send the hips back and lower your body into a squat keeping your chest upright, core and back rigid.
  • Explosively stand up by sending the hips forward and squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement.
  • Rinse and repeat.

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Be sure to stay light with these movements at first until you feel like you are doing them perfectly (especially the snatch).  I encourage you to employ a coach to give you some pointers as it is difficult to know if you are doing them correctly or not. 

Have fun and get some!

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