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Kettlebell Definitive list of swing muscles?

Eric Stone

Level 1 Valued Member
Greetings:

In my internet ramblings, I'm finding conflicting graphics listing which muscles fire during swings. Of course, they all have glutes, etc., but some include certain muscles, while others do not.

Can anyone point me to a source they trust on this matter? Ideally based on research? ?

Takk!
 

Nate

Level 6 Valued Member
In addition to that chart, I've noticed calves, rectus abdominus, lats, biceps & rear delts. They're not isolation exercise level of recruitment, but significant if done with proper hardstyle form, volume & adequate weight. Massive bang for the rep.
 

Eric Stone

Level 1 Valued Member
How come some diagrams include delts? I'm trying to determine where in the swing that happens. Is it just the "keeping your arm from tearing out of its socket" aspect?
 

Ap0c

Level 1 Valued Member
How come some diagrams include delts? I'm trying to determine where in the swing that happens. Is it just the "keeping your arm from tearing out of its socket" aspect?
The rear delts definitely assist in that. They also help drive the kettlebell back into the hike.

On another note, I actually one time noticed some chest involvement in a super long set of like 100 crisp 2H swings at a light weight. I had worked out that they were helping me "break" the handle/screw the shoulder in/however you want to put it on the way up. I would honestly go as far as to say that a swing can work your entire body, esp. if you are feeding it in both directions.
 

Anna C

Level 9 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
Sinister
This article has a pretty good list.

 

Anna C

Level 9 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
Sinister
Also some pretty good discussion on muscles used in this new article from @Brett Jones !

 

Eric Stone

Level 1 Valued Member
Hmm, some observations on this matter. I gathered from someone else's form check string that I should be working to pull my shoulder down and back during my swing. (My whole shoulder wants to slop forward naturally and turn my torso.) Two things I've noticed from tightening the lat:
1. With one-handed swings, keeping the bell swinging at midline seems to engage the bicep a little, particularly at the elbow attachment. I gather this is because packing the shoulder makes the bell want to pull to that side, so active resistance involves the pecs and elbow stabilizers.
2. With two-handed swings, pulling the shoulders back makes me notice more abdominal engagement. Perhaps when the upper thorax is tightened toward the back, the front of the rib cage needs to tighten down to counterbalance.
Anyone have any experience to corroborate this, or other guidance?
 
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