Learn how to build muscle hypertrophy with kettlebells.
Kettlebells are old weight training tools used to improve your overall strength, power, balance, coordination and endurance.
They are severely underrated by some athletes.
It is possible to build muscle and get stronger with only kettlebells. Kettlebell exercises are generally easy to perform and, while some creativity is needed to achieve your desired outcomes with minimal equipment, an understanding of programming and progression will go a long way to get athletes to improve their performance and body composition.
How to Build Muscle Hypertrophy with Kettlebells
Focus on eccentrics
Eccentric movement, or the eccentric portion of an exercise, happens when an active muscle lengthens under load. Eccentric exercises traditionally slow down the portion of the exercise that lengthens the muscles – think for example negative pull-ups.
A great way to train for muscle growth with kettlebells is by training the eccentric phase of common kettlebell exercises. For example, slowly lowering the kettlebell from the top of the snatch or the clean rack position.
While it is still unclear whether eccentric loading produces greater hypertrophy compared to concentric loading – or the other way around – mixing up your training and including both will achieve your desired muscle adaptations.
The half snatch
Introduce the Half Snatch to your training regime to build muscle hypertrophy with kettlebells.
The half snatch is not only a great drill for improving your kettlebell snatch – as it removes the complexity of the drop – but also addresses the eccentric portion of the movement.
What is hypertrophy?
Hypertrophy involves an increase in size of skeletal muscle through a growth in size of its component cells. In simple words: it’s the process of growing muscle.