Suzie’s top 5 kettlebell moves

I love using kettlebells!  Simple!

The kettlebell is one of the most effective tools for obtaining a whole body workout. Kettlebells are unique in that no other tool can be used for such a vast array of exercises.

Most people that train with me on a weekly basis know that there’s very rarely a session where the kettlebells don’t get used.  Kettlebells are incorporated into our outdoor fitness session, personal training and rehabilitation sessions because our clients get awesome results – improvements in strength, co-ordination and agility, increased power and endurance, better posture and alignment and fat loss!

I have kettlebells from 4kg through to 28kg in the back on my Land Rover everyday so there’s a weight there for the super duper beginners through to clients that have trained with me for years.

Some of you will be familiar with my favourite moves, primarily because we do them… a lot!  I’m not a coach who bothers with fancy shmancy kettlebell moves, I see them on you tube and facebook all the time… and cringe… and wonder how their clients really feel after the session, probably like they’ve been in a brawl with a bull!

Like I’ve said before…  Just the basics, drilled to perfection.  Your body will reap the rewards of your training!

Favourite 5

Military Press
Kettlebell Rotations

Name: Military Press


Beginner 3 reps on each side  3 sets
Intermediate 5 reps on each side  3 sets
Advanced 8 / 10 reps on each side 3 sets

Areas Trained:

Shoulders  (Deltoid)and back (Latissimius Dorsi, Trapezius, Rhomboids, Serratus anterior)


Clean a kettlebell into the rack position.
Adjust feet to shoulder width or slightly narrower
Take a breath in (keep the quads, glutes and core/mid section tight)
Press with the knees locked, neck in neutral alignment and no back bend exhale on the effort
Wrist and forearm remains vertical
There is no movement or momentum from the legs, arms or torso to get the bell up.
Lower the kettlebell back to your shoulder under control and repeat.

Name: Windmill



Beginner 3 reps  3 sets
Intermediate 3 reps 3 sets
Advanced 3 reps  3 sets

As you progress with this move, increase the weight . (Eg Set 1, 8kg set 2 10kg set 3 12kg)

Areas Trained:

Shoulder (Deltoid,  rotator cuff) Back (Latissimius Dorsi, Trapezius, Rhomboids, Serratus anterior) Hamstrings


Clean the kettlebell into the rack position and press, ensure feet are in correct position
Keep your opposite hand relaxed by your side.
Take a step back with the foot on the same side as the bell. (Bell in right hand, step back with right leg)
Rotate your torso to the same side as the bell (Bell in right hand, rotate to the right)
Lock out both knees
Keep the quads, gluts and core/mid section tight
Glide your opposite hand towards the space in between your feet looking up at the bell as you descend.
Go as far as you can until you can no longer keep your knees locked out
As you bring yourself into standing, continue to look at the bell.
Bring your body back into neutral position
Rack the bell safely and lower to the ground.

Name: Kettlebell Swing (‘Fat Burning Athlete Builder’ Dan John)


Beginner 10 reps  3 sets
Intermediate 10 reps  5 sets
Advanced 10 reps   8 sets

Areas Trained:

Ballistic movement covering posterior and anterior chains


Hinging at the hips, drive you butt cheeks back and down and distribute your weight evenly through your heels.
Back and neck remain long and neutral.  As you reach for the kettlebell handle allow for a slight knee bend.
Engage your lats by trying to ‘break’ the handle of the kettlebell.  Keep your arms straight and elbows locked out
Drive the bell backwards through your legs towards your butt cheeks.
Extending the hips forward, drive the bell up to shoulder height (no higher) until the body forms a straight line at the top of the swing (hips and knees extended and spine neutral)
Hinging at the hips, drive you butt cheeks back, Push the bell down through your legs ensuring the handle is above the knees. Back and neck remain long and neutral, lats engaged

Name: Turkish Get Up


Beginner 3 reps  3 sets
Intermediate 3 reps  3 sets
Advanced 3 reps   3 sets

As you progress with this move, increase the weight! Or start with a light weight and move up in weight for each set. (Eg Set 1, 12kg set 2 14kg set 3 16kg)

The TGU is a highly functional move requiring all muscles to work together to complete the exercise – taking you from the floor to standing and back down again. Ideally, perform this movement with just bodyweight until proficiency of the movement is achieved, then begin to load with weight (kettlebells are great if you have access to them)

The TGU is one of my favourite moves, performed correctly, it not only builds strength but it torches the calories too! My female clients love it!  The benefits of this movement are plenty including:

Lean toned body
Improved leg / hip mobility
Shoulder strength and stabilisation
Core strength and stability
Co-ordination through linking movements
Improved Thoracic extension

Areas Trained:

Core / mid section (Obliques, transverse abdominals, rectus abdominus) Entire shoulder complex (Trap, levator scapulae, rhomboids, pectoralis major and minor, lats, teres major, deltoid and rotator cuff) Legs (Quads and hamdstrings)


Starting in the foetal position on your right hand side, take hold of the bell with both hands and roll onto your back with the kettlebell on your chest, below your breasts.
Holding the bell in your right hand, Press the bell above your chest, lock out your elbow, right knee is bent.
Left arm and left leg extended at 45 degree angles on the floor
Push the bell up and away from your body and bring yourself onto your elbow, then push onto your palm.  You will not be in sitting position with the bell above your head!
Push / extend your hips up and sweep your left leg backwards, left knee under left hip.
Bring your torso upright and stand.  Hips and knees are extended and spine neutral
Reverse this movement on the way back down.
Change sides

Name: Kettlebell Press Rotations


Beginner 3 reps  3 sets (1 rep is all 3 movements – side, front, side rep…)
Intermediate 8 reps 3 sets
Advanced 10 / 12 reps 3 sets

Areas Trained:

Abdominals, Latissimius Dorsi, Trapezius, Rhomboids, Deltoids, pectorial major and minor.


Place the kettlebell between your feet, from the dead lift position, take hold of the handle of the bell with both hands.  Dead clean the bell, transferring your hands from the handles to the horns finishing the move with the bell on your chest.
Feet remain shoulder width apart
Press the bell directly above your head, so your arms are straight (elbows locked out).  Keep the bell in this position.
Keeping your feet facing forward and arms extended above your head rotate your torso to the left.  Keeping your arms extended and elbows locked out, Lower arms to shoulder height  under control then back up above your head.
Rotate back to centre, Keeping your arms extended and elbows locked out, lower bells under control to should height then back up above your head.
Rotate to the Right and repeat the move.
Bring the bell back to the chest and lower to the ground under control

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