15 Ways to Avoid Scraping Your Shins Deadlifting – How to Stop Bruising

How can you avoid scraping shins deadlift pain?

Some say that deadlift shin scrapes and bruises are an expected consequence of deadlifting.

But the truth is that hurting your shins is a sign that you need to improve your deadlift form.

Deadlifts are a fantastic way to get leaner, get stronger, transform your physique or become a better athlete.

But, because the deadlift is so powerful, there is more risk deadlifting than taking a stroll.

Improving your deadlift form is hard work, but the results are worth it because great deadlift form is how you prevent shin scrapes and worse.

Here are 15 actionable tips and to help perfect your conventional deadlift form:

scraping shins deadlift prevention tips
15 scraping shins deadlift prevention tips

Take a Jump Stance

How would you stand if you were going to jump up as high as possible?

You would not take a very narrow stance with your feet close together.

And you would not take a very wide stance with your feet spread far apart.

Your strongest position to jump as high as possible is with your feet hip width apart.

Try it out.

Notice how far apart your feet are when you get ready to jump as high as you can.

That is your jump stance.

This position will give you the greatest amount of power to push the floor when you begin your deadlift motion.

Imagine walking up to the bar, and standing in front of the bar in your jump stance.

Do Not Squat Down to the Bar

The deadlift is not a squat.

In the squat, your hips go below parallel to your knees at the bottom of the squat.

In the deadlift, you keep your hips higher, above your knees.

If you attempt to deadlift out of a squat, your shins will be leaning forward past the bar.

That is a great way to scrape your shins.

You need to keep your shins out of the way of the bar.

Ideally your shins will be almost perpendicular to the bar.

When you deadlift, the bar will maintain contact with and glide over your shins.

Not dig in and gouge your shins

But how do you get down to the bar?

The answer is to move your hips back as far as you can.

This will cause your hands to drop down to your knees.

Imagine it and try it.

When your hands are at your knees, now lower yourself to the bar.

Your hips will still be above your knees, as if in a half squat.

Think of Your Arms Like Hooks

Grip the bar, not too wide and not too narrow.

The ideal grip is where your arms are just outside of your legs.

Remember to keep your arms straight with no bend in the elbow.

Never try to deadlift with your arms.

Think as if you are carrying two suitcases at your side.

You will carry them, with straight arms, using the strength of your lats and back.

You stabilize the deadlift weight with your arms.

Do not lift the weight with your arms, rather deadlift using your entire body.

You are going to lift by first pushing the floor with your feet and then driving your hips forward.

I will explain that a bit further on.

Lift Your Chest

Now, you are set up in front of the bar, in a jump stance, bar over the middle of your foot, hands just outside the legs.

Line up the barbell over where you tie your shoelaces as a cue that you are mid-foot.

Hips higher than your knees as if in a half squat.

And your elbows are locked to ensure your arms are straight.

Now lift your chest.

Lifting your chest will automatically straighten your back.

You must never deadlift with a round back.

Only deadlift when your back is neutral and flat.

Think Vertical Leg Press

At this point you are ready to deadlift.

Your shoulder blades are straight over the bar.

You are sitting back a bit as you will see in the video below.

Your weight is evenly distributed on your feet, not on your toes.

The following is perhaps the best tip I ever read about the deadlift.

And I first heard it from Jeff Cavaliere.

Start your deadlift motion by pushing against the floor from the middle of your feet.

Just as you push on the leg press machine.

Push the floor with your feet.

Think of pushing the floor.

As the barbell rises, you keep contact with your shins.

You will feel the barbell gliding over your shins.

Not banging against your shins.

Your shins act as a guide, a track for the barbell to ascend.

Watch Jeff illustrate this concept of deadlift as a leg press in his deadlift setup video.

Push, Do Not Pull

Another way of saying the same thing, but that might resonate with you.

Think knee extension and not hip extension.

If you initiate the deadlift with hip extension, you will try to pull the bar off the floor.

You will use your arms and back and try to pull the weight up.

Besides the danger to your back, you will scrape your shins because they are still not out of the way.

The solution is to think knee extension.

Knee extension is the leg press as described above.

Instead of starting the deadlift with your hips, you start with your knees.

Pushing the floor from the middle of your foot will move your shins out of the way.

And will make it easier for you to deadlift.

Think of how hard you push the floor to do pushups.

You need to push the floor likewise to start your deadlift.

Stop trying to lift the weight without pushing the floor first.

(Pushups are another foundation of the deadlift prescription – read why here.)

Watch Strongman and Powerlifter Alan Thrall Explain Deadlift Setup Tips to Prevent Scraping and Bruising Your Shins

Deadlift Straight Up – Not Back

As the barbell rises, think that you are deadlifting in a vertical line off the floor.

You are not dragging the bar into your shins and pulling the bar back.

You are lifting, deadlifting the weight in a vertical line.

The vertical line is the shortest distance from your deadlift setup to standing upright with the weight.

Drive Your Hips When the Barbell Reaches Your Knees

The next phase of the deadlift is to drive your hips.

When the barbell reaches your knees, drive your hips forward.

This way you will be using the power of your hips, back and lats to straighten up while holding the weight.

Do not arch your back at the top of the deadlift.

Stand straight for a moment and then lower.

Lower the Barbell in the Same Way

Move your hips back till the barbell reaches your knees.

And then lower the barbell to the floor.

Stop Bouncing

Stop bouncing the barbell off the floor to use that momentum to get more reps.

The deadlift is a lift of dead weight off of the floor.

Not bouncing the barbell off the floor.

When the weight gets heavy, bouncing the barbell is a wonderful way to get injured.

So, don’t do it.

Lower the barbell, reset, and deadlift as explained above.

Get Deadlift Shoes – Today

Stop wearing running shoes for deadlifting.

You want a flat shoe with hard soles to deadlift because:

  • This is the best way to distribute the weight throughout your foot.
  • Flat soles reduces the distance between your feet and the floor, reducing the distance of your deadlift.
  • Every millimeter reduction in how high you must deadlift the bar counts.
  • Hard soles gives you better stability, which results in better barbell control, and deadlift form.

Running shoes on the other hand have compressible soles which do not provide sufficient stability for deadlifting.

Running shoes are for running, not deadlifting.

Either get the right shoe or deadlift in socks.

Some good deadlift shoe options in 2018 are:

Chuck Taylor All Stars

A lower price point to get started, Chuck Taylors are an affordable option to replace your running shoes for deadlifts. Of course, you can wear Chuck Taylors casually, for basketball or for squats and deadlifts as powerlifters discovered years ago.

Reebok Crossfit Nano

The Reebok Nano version 6.0 crossfit trainer shoe is another excellent option for deadlifting.  With a flat hard sole and strong Kevlar canvas, the Reebok Nano will give you the stability necessary for handling heavy weights.

Nike Metcon 4 Training Shoe

As of today, Nike Metcon 4 are the shoes I use to squat and deadlift.  The Nike Metcon 4 is popular with strength and crossfit training athletes. Among the best feature of the Nike Metcon 4 is the flywire built into the lacing system helps keep the foot secure and locked into place.  Stability is critical.  

If you have any knee issues such as a torn or missing meniscus, you must make sure to have the most stable shoes possible for deadlifting.

As soon as you start lifting weights, especially for squats and deadlifts, get out of those running shoes and into the most stable, hard sole deadlift appropriate shoes that you can afford.  Ruining your knees is not the goal of deadlifting. 

Invest in a good pair of deadlift shoes, whether the  Chuck Taylor All Stars or the Nike Metcon 4.  Do not risk injury.  There are many deadlift shoe options available and no excuses.

Read this for more details on how to squat with proper form.

The current USAPL NJ state powerlifting Champion and the NPC Tri-State Bodybuilding Champion, Ray Padilla, does not have a meniscus in one of his knees.

Ray highly recommends and swears by the Nike Metcon 4.  His motto is “No Meniscus, No Problem!”  

scraping shins deadlift problem? Get the Right Shoes to improve your deadlift form and avoid injury
Ray Padilla’s advice – How to avoid scraping shins on deadlifts and other injuries? Get the Right Shoes!  Follow Ray on Instagram @eps_training.

 

Deadlift Pants for Scraping Shins

Deadlift pants are not the best solution to prevent scraping your shins deadlifting.  Fine-tuning your deadlift form is the best answer to prevent shin scrapes and bruises from deadlifting.  If you do not perfect your deadlift form, even with long deadlift pants, you will still bang your shins up.

However, deadlift pants are a good option to protect your shins as you hone your deadlift form.

There are a few problems with relying on deadlift pants:

  1. You cannot easily see the middle of your foot for the deadlift setup.  And as you know, setting up the bar over the middle of your foot is critical to getting the maximum push off the floor.
  2. If you decide to compete in powerlifting, deadlift pants are not allowed in competition.  So you better get used to deadlifting without the shin scraping protection of long pants in case you want to compete in a powerlifting meet someday.
  3. Relying on deadlift pants to protect your shins will not help you better your deadlift form.

Nevertheless, using long deadlift pants are a smart way to start deadlifting or practice refining your deadlift form.

Deadlift Socks are a Good Investment

On the other hand, deadlift socks are an excellent investment.  In contrast to deadlift pants, these are the benefits of deadlift socks:

  1. You can easily see the middle of your foot for the deadlift setup.  An effective cue to judge mid-foot is to set the bar directly over where you tie your shoe laces.
  2. If you decide to compete in powerlifting, deadlift socks are allowed in competition.
  3. deadlift socks do protect your shins and help you focus on improving your deadlift form.

My favorite socks for deadlifting at this point are MOXY Performance Deadlift Socks.  They last long, are comfortable and go over the knee.

You can also use soccer socks for shin protection, but the advantage of Deadlift Socks like MOXY is that they have additional padding in the shin area for better shin safety.

Deadlift Shin Guards

Another option to deadlift without scraping shins is to get deadlift shin guards. Even though deadlift shin guards are not permitted in powerlifting competitions, you have the same benefits of deadlift socks with added protection for your shins.

Practice Makes Perfect

In your next deadlift workout, use light bumper plates to practice perfect deadlift form.

Bumper plates are the same size as standard 45 pound iron plates, but are available in weights as light as 10 pounds.

As a result, bumper plates are an excellent tool to improve your deadlift form and prevent unnecessary injuries.

Great deadlift form is how you prevent bruising your shins while deadlifting.

Deadlifting every day you workout will help you work on your form.

You can deadlift everyday you train, but you cannot go heavy every day.

Daily heavy deadlifts will be too much for your central nervous system to handle.

Related Post:

Here are 10 deadlift form rules to prevent lower back pain.

Conclusion

Scraping your shins on the deadlift is very painful and can even result in bloody shins.

Learning how to deadlift with great form is the best protection for your shins.

As well as avoiding the risk of other injuries when deadlifting.

Perfecting your deadlift form should be your goal, not how much weight you can deadlift.

Even if you do not deadlift heavy, you still gain many health and fitness benefits from deadlifts.

I lost 75 pounds in 6 months just from real foodsquats, deadlifts and pushups.

And believe me, at 61 years of age with a torn meniscus, I do not deadlift heavy.

This post gives you 15 actionable tips to prevent hurting your shins on deadlifts.

What are your best tips to prevent scraping shins deadlift pain?

Read more: https://hashimashi.com/scraping-shins-deadlift/#ixzz5Ks7Srmg2

26 Remarkable Benefits Of Deadlifts To Unleash Your Fitness

Fitness Gear: Workout Performance Socks Are a Thing & They’re Legit!

Fitness Gear: Workout Performance Socks Are a Thing & They’re Legit!

If you regularly attend exercise or weights classes, you’ve probably noticed that knee-high workout socks are all the rage – and not just with teenagers.Turns out, knee-high performance socks got their start within the CrossFit community. Andrew Deters, marketing manager at Southern California-based Moxy Socks, says that Moxy Socks was inspired to create their “Deadlift” sock after hearing that when people go to dead lift weights, the barbell would scratch their shins.

“We took the construction of a ski sock, which is called full-cushion, and made that go from the mid-calf all the way up to the knee. So, the bottom half of the sock is very breathable and flexible, while the top is thick and essentially padded,” Deters explains.

The styles are rad, the fabric is a blend of 85 percent Pima cotton, 9 percent nylon, 5 percent spandex and 1 percent polyester, and they do provide some compression on the calves, which and helps with blood flow during your workout. For less than $12 a pair, they are totally worth checking out, but look out, your kids will probably want a pair, too!

Photo: Moxy Socks 

Related Products on Amazon We Think You May Like:

Moxy Socks
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HIIT TRAINING: Everything You Need To Know

The treadmill became my best friend after I quit playing basketball.

But after hearing about distance running limiting muscle growth, and looking for other ways to stay lean, I found HIIT.

This a simple, non-technical guide, of everything I’ve learned about HIIT (high-intensity interval training) after 30+ hours of research. Health benefits, workouts, science-backed studies, and more.

Let’s get into it.

Man and woman each riding airdyne spin bike inside gym

 

HIIT OVERVIEW


What does HIIT mean? High-intensity interval training
What’s HIIT? Short spurts of intense exercise followed by a brief resting period
Where can I do it? Gym, home, outside, you name it.
Benefits Burn calories faster, weight loss, increase aerobic capacity, help regulate eating habits, build muscle, improve libido
Workouts Beginner and advanced workouts below.
FAQs 11 questions covered below
Diet What to eat before and after a hit workout.

 

 

 

WHAT IS HIIT AND WHY IS IT SO POPULAR?


High-intensity interval training (HIIT) consists of small bursts of intense effort followed by a resting period. An example of a HIIT workout on a treadmill would be 8 sets of 20-second sprints followed by 10-seconds of rest.

HIIT increases endurance and overall energy, burns fat and builds muscle simultaneously, boosts metabolism and helps regulate eating habits, and more importantly, burns more calories in less time.

HIIT can be done practically anywhere, on any machine, with or without weights, and by people of all ages, fitness levels, and athletic ability.

 

8 benefits of hiit workouts
Source: Advanced Medical Certification

 

HEALTH BENEFITS


Increase endurance, burn fat, build muscle

Both HIIT and traditional endurance training will increase your aerobic capacity (VO2 max) but you’ll get better results in less time with HIIT — especially if you’re young and not very active (1).

The higher your VO2 max, the less likely you are to get cardiovascular diseases like high blood pressure, obesity, heart failure, coronary artery disease, or metabolic syndrome.

It also works both aerobic and anaerobic fitness levels allowing your body to burn fat and build muscle at the same time.

Lose weight and protect against diabetes

HIIT helps reduce body fat and prevent insulin resistance in young women which can lead to diabetes (4).

And you’ll burn even more calories than you would with sprint interval training (SIT) which is the same thing but intensity levels never drop below maximum effort (think: running vs. hauling ass) (5).

Compared to traditional cardio workouts (e.g. long distance running) it’s quite possible to burn twice the calories in half the time with HIIT training.

Boost metabolism, regulate eating habits

Like traditional weightlifting, there’s an ‘after-burn effect’ with HIIT known as EPOC — excess post-exercise oxygen — where your body continues burning calories for nearly two days after your workout (6).

This elevates your metabolism and can help control your sweet tooth by maximizing ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin and leptin also help with fat burn and weight loss.

Improve focus, energy, libido

Quick, intense workouts like HIIT have been linked to enhanced cognition in children (8). HIIT helps to increase mitochondria levels which is what’s responsible for energy levels.

Studies have shown that long, intense workouts are tied to lower testosterone levels and libido.

Firm skin, fewer wrinkles (anti aging)

Physical activity of any kind, and HIIT training in particular, can help promote the growth of collagen in your skin which will lessen wrinkles, improve skin elasticity, and skin moisture.

 

 

 

 

INFLUENTIAL SCIENCE AND SCIENTISTS


Tabata

The infamous Tabata HIIT regimen comes from Professor Izumi Tabata.

He studied 2 groups of athletes: one trained 3x per week at a moderate intensity for 60 mins, the other trained 3x per week for only 4 mins at max. intensity (20-second intervals, 10-second breaks).

After 6 weeks, they discovered HIIT’s unique ability to build muscle and burn fat simultaneously much faster than most traditional training methods.

Gibala

Dr. Martin Gibala didn’t believe HIIT was for the average person. He argued that low volume HIIT was as effective as 4-minutes of Tabata. (9) He found HIIT training 3x per week to be the same as traditional cardio 5x per week..

In 2011, after further testing seniors and inactive people, they found HIIT reduces the risk of inactivity-related disorders/diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and cancer (10).

Zuniga

Jorge Zuniga, Creighton University, asked a simple question. What style of HIIT most impacts aerobic capacity (VO2 max) in the shortest time?

He tested 12 triathletes and concluded that 30-second intervals with 30-second rest at 90% max. was most effective.

Peter Coe

Athletics coach Peter Coe had his son run 200-meter sprints with 30 seconds rest.

This type of training was inspired by German coach and university professor Woldemar Gerschler and the Swedish physiologist Per-Olof Astrand. (12)

Vollaard (REHIT)

Dr. Niels Vollaard believe, like Gibala did, that HIIT was too intense for the average person.

For six weeks they put 29 sedentary men/women through 3 10-minute workouts per week. They found aerobic capacity and metabolic health improvements across the board.

Each 10-minute bike session consisted of  low intensity cycling with 1-2 max. intensity intervals (10-20 secs). (13)

 

Maximizing time spent near VO2 max during 15 / 15 HIIT sessions
Source: Pinterest

 

HIIT WORKOUTS


If you need some ideas, check out the workouts below. Keep in mind, you can always tweak the duration/intensity of a HIIT workout.

If a workout calls for 10 x 30-second sprints at 100% max. effort, there’s no reason you can’t do 60-second sprints at 85% effort, especially if you’re a newbie.

 

Beginner

 

 

Advanced

 

 

7-minute circuit

7-Minute HIIT Workout
Source: PopSugar

 

30-minute basketball HIIT

 

Find more basketball workouts here.

 

Treadmill fat burning

 

Find more treadmill workouts here.

 

How to do HIIT on a stationary bike?

 

Find more stationary bike workouts here.

 

20-minute elliptical workout

 

Find more elliptical workouts here.

 

20-minute stairmaster workout

 

Find more step machine workouts here.

 

HIIT swimming

 

Find more swimming workouts here.

 

30-minute jump rope workout

 

More jump rope workouts can be found here.

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)


Q: WHAT SHOULD I EAT BEFORE A WORKOUT?

A: Make sure you’re hydrated and have enough energy to burn. Carbs and some protein usually do the trick but don’t overdo it or you’ll end up feeling sluggish. Here are some ideas, try eating 1-2 hours before gym:

Wheat toast and eggs, granola and greek yogurt, peanut butter and banana sandwich, cottage cheese and dried fruit, and of course plenty of water (at least 1L).

Q: WHAT SHOULD I EAT AFTER A WORKOUT?

Once your workout is finished, eat within 45 mins. Some healthy suggestions include rice and a chicken breast (lean), greek yogurt and dried fruit, or peanut butter and apple slices.

Q: SUPPLEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS?

A: Supplements that boost your energy (temporarily anyways) are all over the place. My personal favorite pre-workout is caffeine in the form of coffee. I used to take pre-workouts like C4 but those things can’t be good for you.

Q: IS P90X HIIT?

A: Yes. P90x is HIIT because it incorporates intense intervals with short periods of rest.

Q: HOW DO YOU DO HIIT CARDIO?

A: Any intense interval session with short resting periods would qualify. Avoid long periods of moderate intensity and aim towards short spurts of intense effort. Example: 10 mins of 30 secs max. effort sprints followed by 30 secs rest

Q: HOW OFTEN CAN/SHOULD YOU DO HIIT?

A: It depends on a few things: your fitness level, workout intensity, and recovery time. Seasoned athletes can handle 3-4 intense workouts per week. As a beginner, 2+ days per week is pushing it. When in doubt, listen to your body.

Q: CAN YOU BUILD MUSCLE WITH HIIT?

A: Yes! That’s the beauty of HIIT — you can build muscle and burn calories and fat simultaneously. The general rule of thumb is the shorter the intervals and the higher the intensity of those intervals, the more muscle you’ll ultimately build.

Q: CAN SENIORS DO HIIT?

A: Yes! HIIT can be done by people of all ages with modification. In fact, experts say HIIT is more effective in seniors and can increase energy/efficiency at a cellular level.  This study suggests doing this workout 3 times per week: 10 x 60-second cycling at ~60% of max. power with 60-seconds recovery.

Q: CAN KIDS DO HIIT?

A: This study shows that HIIT is a feasible and time-efficient way to whip your kids into shape!

Q: BETS WORKOUT FOR FAT LOSS?

A: Dr. Tabata claims (see above) 4-minutes of 20-second max. effort intervals with 10-second rests are most effective. Here’s an infographic from Daily Burn that helps you find your perfect HIIT workout:

 

HIIT Formula Inforgraphic by Daily Burn
Source: Daily Burn

 

RELATED ACRONYMS:


Came across lots of acronyms while researching, here they are:

CRF: Cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF)

MICT: Moderate intensity continuous training

HIIE: High-intensity intermittent exercise

SIT: Sprint-interval training

SSE: Steady-state exercise

LISS: Low impact steady state

REHIT: Reduced-exertion high-interval training

 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES


Here are some additional resources that I came across during my 20+ hours scouring the internet about HIIT. Wanted to include them here as I thought they might be helpful!

Bodybuilding.com: High-Intensity Interval Training: The Ultimate Guide

MyProtein.com: How Does HIIT Boost Metabolism?

ExperienceLife.com: Guide to HIIT

WellnessForce.com: High-Intensity Interval Training & Skin Health

 

SOURCES


1- Effectiveness of High-Intensity Interval Training (HIT) and Continuous Endurance Training for VO2max Improvements: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Controlled Trials

2 – The Impact of High-Intensity Interval Training Versus Moderate-Intensity Continuous Training on Vascular Function: a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

3 – Effects of moderate-intensity endurance and high-intensity intermittent training on anaerobic capacity and VO2max.

4 – The effects of high-intensity intermittent exercise training on fat loss and fasting insulin levels of young women

5 – Dissimilar Physiological and Perceptual Responses Between Sprint Interval Training and High-Intensity Interval Training

6 – Effect of an acute period of resistance exercise on excess post-exercise oxygen consumption: implications for body mass management

8 – High-intensity training enhances executive function in children in a randomized, placebo-controlled trial

9 – A practical model of low-volume high-intensity interval training induces mitochondrial biogenesis in human skeletal muscle: potential mechanisms

10 – Low-Volume Interval Training Improves Muscle Oxidative Capacity in Sedentary Adults

11 – Physiological Responses during Interval Training with Different Intensities and Duration of Exercise

12 – High-intensity interval training Wikipedia

13 – Towards the minimal amount of exercise for improving metabolic health: beneficial effects of reduced-exertion high-intensity interval training

14 – Two weeks of high-intensity aerobic interval training increases the capacity for fat oxidation during exercise in women

 

For more information about the original article, go to : https://fitnessgoat.com/guides/hiit/

www.fitnessgoat.com

What is Vaporwave?

What is Vaporwave? If you’ve ever been rummaging around the internet or youtube you might have encountered this term called, Vaporwave. What is it?

Why do people type strange or mysterious captions in all-caps with spaces in it? Like N O S T A L G I A

Vaporwave is an art and musical movement formed in the late 2000’s early 2010’s that takes old tracks and samples and slows them down. The music itself is based in heavy electronica and synth, combined with 80s or vintage sampling to create some interesting effects. Well the easiest way to explain is more to show you:

 

Moxy Socks Macintosh Plus Vaporwave AESTHETIC

 

Here are all the socks down below which we have created to celebrate the Vaporwave artstyle.

 

Vaporwave Palm Tree

 

Let us know if you like these socks and if you’d like to see anything else. We do have a ton of new dye sublimation socks available.

 

Follow us on instagram @moxysocks

How To Use Kettlebells In Your Arm Workout Routines

How To Use Kettlebells In Your Arm Workout Routines

BY  
Last Updated: 7th October 2016

If you want to have bigger, stronger arms, it’s going to take A LOT of work! Your arm muscles (biceps, triceps, and forearms) are actually fairly small muscles in comparison to your chest, back, and legs. Thankfully, when you train your upper body, your arms get a good workout. Throw in a few arm-centric exercises every week, and you’ve got a recipe for beautiful arms.

There are many ways to work out your arms:

  • Bicep curls with a barbell for maximum muscle recruitment and loading
  • Concentration curls with dumbbells for maximum isolation of the muscles
  • Preacher curls with a cable machine for constant muscle tension
  • Pull-Ups using your bodyweight for developing functional strength

But there’s one type of workout many people tend to forget: kettlebell workouts.

Why Kettlebells?

Kettlebells have become hugely popular in the last decade or so, but a surprising number of people still ignore them for the classic dumbbells and barbells. Kettlebells are the perfect addition to your workout, for some reasons:

  • They can help you get your heart rate up more effectively than a regular dumbbell or barbell movements.
  • Kettlebell training can help to reduce lower back, neck, and shoulder pain, and can improve lower back muscular strength.
  • Kettlebell exercises can restore and enhance lower back function.
  • Exercises like the Kettlebell swing can build maximum and explosive strength very effectively, and are great for overall conditioning.
  • Kettlebell training can help to enhance posture, coordination, and reaction to sudden perturbation.
  • Kettlebell workouts are better for fat-burning, power and endurance increases, and overall functional strength.

All pretty awesome reasons to start working out with kettlebells, right?

Make no mistake: kettlebell training is NOT a viable replacement for your classic weightlifting. You still need to use barbells and dumbbells, machines, and bodyweight exercises if you want to see serious results. Kettlebells are not as effective for overall strength gains.

But where kettlebell training DOES excel is regarding movement, coordination, balance, mobility, endurance, and cardiovascular conditioning. By mixing in a few kettlebell movements, you can change up the style of your workout and hit your arms from a different angle. At the same time, the active movements will push your cardiovascular system to its limits, leading to much better conditioning overall!

How to Use Kettlebells in Your Arms Workout Routines

Kettlebell exercises will not replace your regular arm workouts, but they will be an extra to enhance your training. Below you’ll find a list of the best kettlebell exercises to help you build bigger, stronger arms:

Two-Arm Kettlebell Row

Image Source: Greatist

This is a kettlebell variation of the classic Barbell or Dumbbell Rows. It’s one of the best exercises to help build middle back strength, but it hits your biceps and forearms beautifully as well. Best of all, it will increase the mobility and stability of your lower back.

Pretty easy, right? Working with kettlebells will make the exercise a bit harder, as the weight will hang down beyond the level of your hands. Talk about a killer middle back workout!

Kettlebell Figure 8

Image Source: Marisa’s Kitchen Talk

Be warned: this bad boy is going to BURN! Your abs are doing most of the work here, but your glutes and lower back are engaged to keep your upper body stable as you stay in the bent position. Your shoulders, arms, and forearms do all the work of moving the kettlebell around, giving them a great workout.

It starts out easy enough, but you’ll find yourself huffing and puffing in no time! You’ll feel the fire in your arms, glutes, shoulders, and abs. Definitely, a “finisher” to add to the end of your workout.

Kettlebell Push-Up

Image Source: Greatist

Push-Ups are one of the best upper body movements! They hit your chest muscles beautifully, but your shoulders and triceps do a lot of the work as well. By performing them from the elevated platform (the handles of the kettlebells), you make your chest and arms work a lot harder while taking the strain off your wrists. The result is a much more effective exercise and bigger muscles!

Warning: This can be dangerous if the kettlebells aren’t very stable. Be careful when performing push-ups, and make sure the weight is resting securely on the floor. The last thing you want is to twist your wrist if/when the weight topples.

Single-Arm Kettlebell Floor Press

Image Source: Greatist

This is another kettlebell variation of a classic dumbbell exercise. Floor Presses are ideal for developing upper body strength. The fact that you’re on the floor means that all the weight is on your chest, shoulders, and arms, and your legs do NONE of the work. It’s a killer upper body “pushing” workout that will help you build serious chest, shoulder, and triceps muscles!

The beauty of this workout is that it takes a lot of the strain off your shoulders. If you feel shoulder pain while doing bench presses, this is a good variation to reduce your risk of shoulder injuries while giving your arms one heck of an excellent workout.

Kettlebell Hammer Curls

Image Source: Shape Lift

Want to change things up?

Switching out dumbbells for kettlebells in this exercise places even more of the burden on your forearms, drastically enhancing your grip strength.

The movement still hits your biceps hard, but it increases the drag on your wrists–forcing the stabilizing forearm muscles to contract to keep the weight steady.

Note: You may find that the exercise causes wrist pain. If this happens, lower the weight for a few weeks to get your wrists used to the added strain. It’s the best way to avoid wrist injuries while developing your grip strength.

Kettlebell Slingshot

Image Source: Anokhi Media

Looking to kick your arm workout up a notch? This movement is more than just a great arm, shoulder, and core workout, but it will push your heart and lungs for a killer cardio session. The movement is beautifully simple, and you’ll have no trouble mastering it.

The constant passing from hand to hand will do wonders for your forearms. Every time your muscles contract to grip and swing the kettlebell, it will increase your grip endurance. Definitely, an excellent movement to add for not just your arms, shoulders, and core, but also your forearms!

Kettlebell Farmer’s Walk

Image Source: Redefining Strength

The Farmer’s Walk is one of the best exercises to develop forearm strength. Your muscles are contracted for 45 to 60 seconds, increasing your grip strength and endurance. But by switching dumbbells for kettlebells, you make the workout even harder. Your fingers have to clench tighter to support the load, which is being dragged down by gravity.

Note: You may want to start with a bit less weight than you normally use for dumbbell Farmer’s Walk.

If you want to push your forearms to their limits, use a kettlebell with an extra-thick handle. The open grip will work your arms in a unique way.

Two-Handed Kettlebell Military Press

Image Source: Greatist

Military Press is one of the best exercises for your shoulders, and your triceps do a lot of the work when lifting the weights overhead. Using kettlebells will change the load of the workout, hitting your shoulders and arms in a new way. It’s a good variation on the classic exercise. You’ll see the results in no time!

Bonus: To recruit your core muscles, lift just one kettlebell at a time, with the other resting down by your side. Your side and abs muscles will have to work to keep your upper body stable as you raise the weight overhead.

Kettlebell Lunge Press

Image Source: Kettlebell Kings

Lunge Presses are one of my favorite workouts! The Lunge portion hits your glutes, quads, and hamstrings, while the Press portion works your shoulders, back, and arms. All the while, your core is engaged to keep your balance as you are in the Lunge position. It’s not an easy exercise for beginners, but once you master it, you’ll see how awesome it is.

Talk about a wicked full-body movement! Throw this movement into your workout as a finisher, and it will hit your body HARD.

Kettlebell High Pull

Image Source: Girls Talking

The High Pull is an exercise meant to work your shoulders and arms like a boss. The fact that you’re lifting the weight from the floor up over your head means that your upper body gets one heck of a workout. It’s a classic “pulling” exercise that focuses on your anterior and lateral deltoids, biceps, and forearms. For sleeker arms and rounded shoulders, it’s definitely a movement to include in your workout!

Notice how there’s a bit of squat at the beginning of the workout? By performing that squat, you recruit the muscles in your glutes, hamstrings, and quads. This exercise combines a bit of lower body and core movement into your upper body workout. Winning

Kettlebell Renegade Row

Image Source: Skinny Mom

The Renegade Row is a surprisingly difficult movement, but a highly effective one! There are many components: the Push-Up hits your chest, triceps, and shoulders; the Plank hits your core and promotes greater endurance, and the Row works your back and biceps.

Combining all these movements into one exercise all but guarantees better fitness!

Note: Kettlebells lack the stability of hexagonal dumbbells, so be careful when performing this exercise! The last thing you want is to twist your wrist or injure your ribs if the kettlebell topples.

Control your movements, and keep your form tight throughout the range of motion. Take a moment to pause between the Row and the Push-Up. That second of pause hits your core even harder!

The beauty of this movement is that you are pushing up from an elevated platform (the handles of the kettlebells). This means that you get a deeper Push-Up, so more focus on your triceps, shoulders, and the outside of your chest muscles.

Two-Handed Kettlebell Overhead Extension

Image Source: Sambangs

Overhead Extensions are a classic dumbbell exercise to hit your triceps. It’s a fairly easy exercise to perform, and the fact that you’re using both arms means you can lift a lot more weight than you could with just one arm. Once you master the form, you’ll find that it’s one of the best triceps exercises.

Pretty simple, right? They’re an easy exercise even for beginners to master, and they’ll be one of the best to help you build serious triceps strength!

Kettlebell Reverse Curls

Image Source: Mike Mahler

Reverse Curls are a unique alternative to your classic Barbell Curls. You perform the exercise with a reversed grip–palms facing down instead of up. This means that you’re gripping the weight from above rather than supporting it from below.

The result is extra strain on your forearms, helping you to develop serious grip strength. It’s the perfect exercise to hit your forearms as you work your biceps.

Here’s how to do them right:

Note: You may encounter some wrist discomfort with this workout, but that’s to be expected. Be careful to keep your movements controlled and wear wrist braces if you need them, but don’t let a minor ache stop you.

Do this exercise right, and it will help you to develop serious wrist strength!

Since kettlebells are very handy, you can even do these exercises at home. It’s convenient and you should never feel too tired to do the routines.

Kettlebells can be a wonderful addition to your arm workouts if you know how to use them right. Include the exercises listed above in your daily routines, and you’ll see progress thanks to the unique design of the kettlebells!

Check out more information about kettlebell posture here with Health Ambitionhttps://www.healthambition.com/how-to-get-good-posture

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