What weight do you use for 2 handed swings?

Discussion in 'Kettlebell' started by phroot, Aug 29, 2019.

  1. phroot

    phroot Double-Digit Post Count

    Hi, new member here. Since 2 handed swings are the easiest exercises to do with a kb, just wondering what weight most of you use to do them. Generally, do you use a size bigger than your other kb exercises?
  2. Hasbro

    Hasbro Triple-Digit Post Count

    It all depends on where you’re at physically. If you’re an average guy just starting out but has been sedentary for a few years you should at a minimum be able to handle a 16k for one handed work and a 24k for two handed. If you follow a program like S&S you’ll find yourself moving up in weight rather quickly. I think you’ll find most experienced people on the forum use a 32k or higher for two handed swings. I rarely do two handed swings myself because I feel like I get a lot more bang for the buck with the one handed variety. Every now and then I’ll grab a 16k and swing two handed as a warmup to get the blood flowing though.
    Billy59, ShawnM and phroot like this.
  3. phroot

    phroot Double-Digit Post Count

    @Hasbro, is the one handed swing better than the two handed swing? Is it better to do one arm per set or both arms simultaneously with two kbs?
  4. mikhael

    mikhael Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    I use two bells, 24 for hight tension performance and learning/correcting technique in 10 of 10 scheme, and 32 for heavy Swings, this in 5 of 5 scheme.
    phroot likes this.
  5. Hasbro

    Hasbro Triple-Digit Post Count

    I’m guessing you’re new to kettlebells and if that’s the case my advice would be to get a 16k and learn the 2 handed swing, the TGU, and follow the S&S program. It’s not so much that one is better than the other but the 2 handed swing is technically easier to grasp while perfecting your hinge movement and a good hinge is definitely a prerequisite imo to the one handed swing. Once you’re comfortable with 2 hands definitely work towards 1 hand.

    The one handed variety is generally better for strength and the 2 handed is better for endurance and both will work slightly different muscle groups too. Your core and lats gets a better workout 1 handed because you’re constantly trying to keep your torso from torquing. Grip strength gets a better workout too. And if you’re new to kb’s don’t even think about doing doubles with 2 bells right now. Get some instruction if you can, focus on technique and don’t move up in weight until your form is ready.
  6. Sauli

    Sauli Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    Anything between single 24kg-44kg bells. Really does not matter too much for me. I can do pretty nice swings with 44kg, but 24kg works still pretty well when you focus fo power and use some overspeed techniques etc..
    Molson, Bro Mo, phroot and 1 other person like this.
  7. phroot

    phroot Double-Digit Post Count

    @Sauli you mentioned 24kg for power what does the 44kg offer for swings? Does it work different muscles, provides more cardio and conditioning and burns more fat?
  8. phroot

    phroot Double-Digit Post Count

    #hasbro. Yes, fairly new. Can you tell me also for 2 handed swings what are the pros and cons for doing them for high reps/lower weight vs. low reps/heavy weight? Which is the way to go for using a kb whereas it's different lifting dumbbells? Is the 10 swings for 10 sets the standard?
  9. Hasbro

    Hasbro Triple-Digit Post Count

    Lower weight high reps would emphasize endurance whereas heavy weight lower reps would emphasize strength. Which way to go would depend on your goals. Personally I go for strength and I would say an overwhelming majority of the members in this forum do the same. Nothing wrong with dumbbells but it’s a different animal from the kb with a different center of gravity and is more limited in the movements you can do with it. One good kb at the appropriate weight is like having a total gym. You can do swings, presses, cleans, squats, tgu’s, DL’s, snatches and much more. Don’t try to make this too complicated. Get a 16k, the Simple & Sinister book, and some personal instruction if you can swing it. The book will answer most of your questions.
    Molson, phroot and Sauli like this.
  10. Sauli

    Sauli Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    44kg offers lot more weight, so swings aint that powerful, but it's great for strength.. Swing is always swing so it always provides all kinds of good things. It is also one-stop-shop. If all you ever did was swings and presses you did not miss a thing in your body.
    Great thing about medium sized bells are that you can do everything with that bell.
    I pressed 44kg once, but I still think that I'll do one bell challenge in near future.
    And I pick 24kg. I do presses, snatches, get ups etc.. and I will be allright.
    Molson and phroot like this.
  11. Nate

    Nate Triple-Digit Post Count

    This quiz works great.

    Attached Files:

    taro, TravisS, Molson and 2 others like this.
  12. rwrjr

    rwrjr Double-Digit Post Count

    Hasbro has given you some good advice. I see you have a number of threads about swings and what size kettlebell to use. You haven't provided any other info. Male or female, size, age, rough physical condition, past strength training info, etc. All answers are a shot in the dark with nothing to go on.

    If you're new to kettlebells, male, 30+ years, not much history with strength training of any kind, then Hasbro hit the nail on the head with the 16kg. Forget what anybody else is using. Start reasonable, get some instruction and learn the core movements. Later, when you're ready buy the 24kg. If kettlebells and strength training is new to you, then you can get a lot of mileage out of a 16kg. S&S is a good program. So is the original ETK. Learn the swing - two and one arm, the snatch, the goblet squat, the press, the TGU, the bottom-up press. I'm willing to bet a 16kg will keep you occupied for a while. When you can snatch the 16kg for reps, and bottom-up press it for reps, you'll be ready for the 24kg.

    When I started, I ran the ETK program with the 16kg and it was a good choice for me at that time. I can swing much heavier bells now but I put in my time with the 16kg, then the 24kg.
    Lee likes this.
  13. Bro Mo

    Bro Mo Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    I tend to work my way to the heaviest thing around for 2 hand swings adjusting reps and sets as necessary but the magic is in the mass. There is no replacement for displacement.
    Oscar likes this.
  14. Oscar

    Oscar Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    2 hands swing weight is intriguing to me. I can use 48 or maybe more (haven't tried), but lately I have been using the 32 giving it full power and fighting against it on the way up and it's very challenging.

    I was surprised when I read in Q&D that Craig Marker was using the 40 for 2HS, which is a weight I bet he can snatch (or close to).

    By using overspeed eccentric we are basically struggling against ourselves. So the weight becomes more relative and a bit less important, I guess.
  15. John Spezzano

    John Spezzano Triple-Digit Post Count Team Leader Certified Instructor

    Good question! Like most of these questions, my answer is an unequivocal "it depends." HA! But seriously, the bell size you use depends on your skill level and your goals. Waving the load is a consistent theme in StrongFirst programming, so switching between light, medium and heavy bells for two-handed swings is a great idea. You can also, as mentioned, do one-handed swings instead. And again, wave the load. When it comes to making progress, variability is your friend.

    Stay strong, my friend!
  16. jef

    jef I am a student of strength. Certified Instructor

    Good advice above. Forget what others use.

    I could tell you that for me, even as a light guy, anything less than 32kg is too light to use for two-handed swings.
    That would be forgetting the former me who started kettlebells years ago with a 16kg, doing mostly two-handed swings and getting plenty from it.
    I actually stayed with 16kg for a long time...
    Billy59 likes this.
  17. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides StrongFirst Director of Community Engagement Staff Member Senior Instructor

    I use 32 or 44 kg. I don't feel the need for anything between those two. 44 is my heavy 2-hand swing for me at 68 kg bodyweight, 32 feels good.

  18. Jacques van der Merwe

    Jacques van der Merwe Triple-Digit Post Count

    I'm using a 2-pood'er for two-handed swings as well. I totally agree with @Oscar about there being something special with the 32kg and eccentric swings. I've been contemplating adding a 40kg but I think I'm going to spend more time with the eccentrics and see where they take me first.
    Billy59 and Oscar like this.
  19. ruslan

    ruslan Still New to StrongFirst Forum

    I find it interesting that outside here and youtube videos have people suggesting and swinging with far heavier weight, usually over 48kg. Just curious why that is?
  20. Bauer

    Bauer More than 500 posts

    Oh, Andy Bolton has a plan on SF starting @ 48 kg and has worked up to 92 kg with it. But then again he is Andy Bolton.
    Kettlebells and Deadlifting: A Match Made in Heaven? | StrongFirst

    I am not sure about SF promotinng "lighter weights", but I guess your impression comes from the SF focus on 1-handed swings and quality hardstyle reps.

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