As you get used to your way around the CrossFit gym, you will discover that the kettlebell is the best equipment piece. If you can only use it right, you can enjoy huge benefits out of it. Long ago, kettlebells were only reserved for the toughest and seasoned CrossFitters, a category that included very few women. Today, there are lots of changes and women are quickly taking up kettlebell training in such a big way.
Irrespective of whether you want to gain muscle mass, gain strength, or simply enhance your aerobic capacity, kettlebells can take you there. You don’t need to visit a gym for you to exercise. As long as you have the handful of kettlebells and about a half an hour at your disposal, you can do a killer workout right in your garage or living room.
Exercising with kettlebells fires up compound muscle groups all at once particularly core muscles which are used for balance. One other aspect of kettlebells that makes workouts even more interesting is that they allow you to add variations and work different movement patterns. Many CrossFitters mix workouts with kettlebells, thereby deriving more fun, motivation, and an all-around engagement.
As a CrossFit woman, your approach to kettlebell should be towards safe and effective workouts. The following are some of the mistakes you should avoid.
Going Too Light
Typically, women go for kettlebells that underestimate their strength. When doing CrossFit exercises such as goblet squat or kettlebell swing, women should capitalize on their legs and not shy away from using heavier weights. The problem with going too light is that it shortchanges your results and encourages poor form which may end up in overuse injuries. The best way to select the right weight is to go for a kettlebell with which you can comfortably do sets of 5 to about 15 reps with good form.
Treating Kettlebell Swing as a Back Exercise
Technically, the kettlebell swing is not a back exercise, but rather a hip exercise. Therefore, when you swing the kettlebell too low, it takes you into a position where your chest becomes parallel to the floor. You should know that the lower your chest gets; the more force is exerted on the low back. Try keeping a neutral spine over the range of motion. The kettlebell, when done properly, should pass through your legs at knee height.
Bending Over as You Unrack and Rack the Kettlebell
When women pick up the kettlebell and put it down, most of them don’t consider this as part of the exercise. So, they hunch over and carry the bells across the floor in an improper manner. This can overly stress your spine as well as the surrounding muscles. The best way to pick up any load including the kettlebell is to keep it directly in line with the center of your body mass. In this way, you will also keep it in line with the feet.
The last mistake is wearing cushy running shoes. When you come into CrossFit, one of the things you need to change or invest in is CrossFit shoes. Cushy shoes reduce the force transfer and affect the performance of your exercises.