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7 Moves to Burn 400 Calories in 20 Minutes

Jan 2 2017 - 10:20am

Kettlebell fans love the heavy, round-shaped weights for a reason — kettlebell exercises combine cardio and strength training for a time-saving calorie burn. The amount of calories you can burn using kettlebells can be amazingly high: a study by the American Council on Exercise found that the average person burns 400 calories in 20 minutes [1] when doing kettlebell exercises. More research has found that regularly exercising with kettlebells significantly reduces back, neck, and shoulder pain [2] by strengthening core and upper body muscles.

Does all that convince you to add more kettlebell to your life? Read on for tips on choosing the right kettlebell and a few calorie-torching exercises to try. And do check out this kettlebell tutorial and workout [3] to learn the basics.

Safety First

If you've never done a kettlebell workout before, know that starting out is a little bit more involved than just lifting weights. Because many kettlebell exercises involve a lot of swinging moves, you need to make sure that you are handling it correctly to not injure yourself. Start with a lighter weight, and try these three exercises [4] to determine if it's the right size. Once you've figured out the right fit, read on for more effective kettlebell exercises.

Kettlebell Deadlift

Deadlifts are extremely effective for correcting your posture, and the fact that they give your butt a nice lift doesn't hurt either. Hold a kettlebell in one hand to do this single-leg deadlift; remember to bend at the waist while keeping your back straight and control your movements as you raise back up. Here's how to do a single-leg kettlebell deadlift correctly [5]:

Turkish Get-Up

Yes, your arms will be tired after you've done this move, but they'll also be well-defined and strong. Here's how to do the Turkish Get-Up [6]:

Kettlebell Squat

This move is a great exercise for toning the glutes, and while you can use a dumbbell to execute the move, using a kettlebell will work more muscles and help challenge your balance. Here's how to do a kettlebell squat [7]:

Related: 7 Ways to Work Your Body With Squats [8]

Kettlebell Windmill

This double-kettlebell move is a killer, but it tones your entire body. And since it focuses on your obliques and torso, you'll notice a smaller waist in no time. To do the kettlebell windmill sequence [9]:

Kettlebell Squat and Swing

This classic kettlebell move will tone your back and shoulders while working your core — all while getting your heart rate up as well! Keep a full grip on the kettlebell to stay in control, since this move is all about the explosive swing you do as you come up from your squat. Learn how to do the kettlebell squat and swing below [11]:

Basic 5-Move Workout

This five-move kettlebell workout [12] will torch tons of calories. When learning these exercises, it's important to start with a light weight first, such as a five- or 10-pound kettlebell. You can increase the amount of repetitions as you become stronger, but first focus on your form and only increase the weight after you can do 20 reps of these moves correctly with a lighter weight.

Kettlebell Video

Ready to learn four fun, effective kettlebell moves? Watch our video [13] with Reebok CrossFit trainer Yumi Lee (who whipped Jessica Alba [14] into shape). She teaches us how to do the Around the World, Uppercut, Heartbeat, and Single-Arm Single-Leg Thruster; the entire workout torches tons of calories.

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