Kettlebells are easily the most versatile piece of workout equipment in the gym. In addition to the conventional movements like the kettlebell swing, or Turkish get up, kettlebells also add more dynamic and functional movement to your leg day exercises, like goblet squats, suitcase deadlifts and more. We’re going to talk about a few of the best kettlebell leg exercises, to help you get strong af and build those quads, glutes, and hammies.
Benefits Of Kettlebell Training
Kettlebells provide a variety of benefits to your functional strength training program. Conventional cardio training can place strain on your joints, especially when performed for a long period time. Kettlebells, can provide cardiovascular training with much lower impact. You can also increase your endurance at a much faster rate with kettlebell training in a less amount of time.
Kettlebells also provide exercise versatility, providing more variation in your accessory strength movements, building strength, power, and total body strength. Nearly all kettlebell exercises are compound movements, requiring multiple muscle groups, joints, core stability, and mobility to perform each movement.
5 Best Kettlebell Leg Exercises
1. Kettlebell Goblet Squat
The goblet squat is a staple in any kettlebell leg training day. A quintessential movement, the squat is fundamental to every major muscle group in your legs and helps improve strength and size.
How to do kettlebell goblet squats:
- Beginning with your feet shoulder-width apart and your toes facing towards 11 and 1 (like on a clock).
- Hold the kettlebell with both hands in front of your chest, with the handle pointed down by the ball.
- Push your hips back, and bend your knees until 90 degrees parallel and push back up into standing position
2. Kettlebell Single-Arm Overhead Lunge
Single-arm kettlebell overhead lunges are a great functional leg exercise, improving balance, mobility, core strength and of course, building bigger and stronger legs.
How to do kettlebell single-arm overhead lunges:
- Begin with your feet shoulder-width apart and your toes facing towards 11 and 1 (like on a clock).
- Hold the kettlebell in front rack position and extend your arm above your head locking out your elbow, tucked by your ear. Your opposing arm will be at a 90-degree angle, parallel to the floor for postural balance.
- While your arms in their locked positions, extend your opposing leg from your extended arm behind you into a lunge. Both knees will bend simultaneously, descend until your back knee touches the floor
- Drive through your front leg and bring yourself back to starting position. From there, extend your leg in front of you, into a front lunge bending both knees, and repeat the same movement.
- After your set, repeat and switch arms, and legs.
3. Double Kettlebell Front Squat
If you’re trying to build more strength, improve core strength and overall performance, the double kettlebell front squat, has you covered. The increased instability and constant changing load, provides more pressure on your abdominal muscles, tightening your core and forcing you to focus on form and function.
How to do double kettlebell front squat:
- Begin with your feet shoulder-width apart and your toes facing towards 11 and 1 (like on a clock) in standard squat position.
- Clean both the kettlebells to front rack position, using a moderate weight.
- Let the kettlebells rest on your forearms, biceps, and shoulders with your wrist in a neutral position.
- As opposed to sitting back in traditional back squat position, you’re going to sit straight down, pushing your weight into your heels, tightening your core and keeping your hips beneath your like a straight line.
- From the bottom position, brace your core, and push through your heels back to the ceiling, while exhaling.
- Congratulations, you’ve completed one rep.
4. Kettlebell Suitcase Deadlift
Be cautious. The kettlebell suitcase deadlift is a relatively simple movement. But you’ll soon realize just how effective this movement really is especially the next day, when the soreness sets in. The suitcase deadlift is easily one of my favorite and most coveted kettlebell leg exercises, providing more core strength, and stretching your hamstrings into submission.
How to do kettlebell suitcase deadlifts:
- Start with your feet a bit closer than shoulder width apart, toes straight ahead of you.
- Starting with two kettlebells on the ground, grab a kettlebell one in each hand with the handle horizontal to your body, placed on the outside of your toes.
- Push your hips back towards the wall behind you, legs with a slight bend at the knee with you’re your chest parallel to the floor.
- From this position, pick up the kettlebells, extending your back towards the wall behind you, and pushing your hips down, squeezing your glutes and hamstrings
- At the top, push your hips back, touching each kettlebell back to the ground at starting position.
5. Kettlebell Single-Leg RDL (Romanian Dead Lift)
If your balance is a struggle, then you’re going to love this one. The Kettlebell single-leg RDL, will put your posture, balance, and patience to the test. Don’t fret if you can’t get this one the first or second try, the RDL takes practice. This is one of the best kettlebell leg exercises, as it activates your glutes and builds better core strength.
How to do kettlebell single-leg RDL:
- Start with the kettlebell on the floor and hinge down grabbing the kettlebell with one hand.
- With the kettlebell at your side, and chest up, push your leg on the same side behind you, as your hips hinge down.
- Softly bend your opposing knee, engage your glutes as you kick back, and drive your weight through your heel
- In the extended position, maintain a flat back and keep your leg in straight alignment.
- As you come back, hinge your hips forward, and drive your leg forward back to starting position.
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