THE BATTLE BEGINS: KETTLEBELLs VS. DUMBBELLS

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You will find dumbbells in gyms across the nation as they have been a fixture for many years. Dumbbells come in a variety of sizes and most importantly you can use them in a multitude of exercises. Which makes us wonder, why a kettlebell, which is a cast-iron piece of equipment that looks like a ball with a handle is something that is worth your effort, time and even use.

WHICH IS THE BEST OPTION FOR STRENGTH TRAINING?

That is a loaded and very tricky question to answer. While advocates of each have strong opinions, the truth is a bit different; what it boils down to is your personal perspective and preference. Keep in mind that you don’t actually have to choose between the two. They can be used as a complementary tool to aid you work out and to help you reach you’re training goals.

KETTLEBELLS PROS

  • Better for complex movements
  • Great for varying your exercises
  • They can be used to challenge your centre of gravity

The greatest pro of a kettlebell is it provides you with a swinging motion that a dumbbell cannot. You can train across muscle group planes other than just horizontal (transverse) and vertical (sagittal). Kettlebells are often used in CrossFit classes for a variety of exercises and they are becoming more and more common in other workouts too. Kettlebells provide a better cardio workout as you are able to move them more easily with the use of a handle. For example, by preforming a kettlebell swing you activate your entire posterior chain of muscles in a way that dumbbells can’t. Your functional strength, the strength we use every day (such as carrying a shopping bag) is developed when used as part of an all-round training program.

DUMBBELLS PROS

  • Easily found in a gym
  • When used correctly they are best for basic movements
  • They provide more stability

Dumbbells are much easier to use for beginners because the exercises that involve them are more static, therefore the injury risk is lowered.  They aid beginners to learn the basics of strength training and improve their physical performance.

Dumbbells are ideal for unilateral training which means, working on both sides of your body at the same time. A great example of which is a bicep curl. If you are thinking of purchasing equipment for a mini home gym, dumbbells are cheaper to purchase than kettlebells too.

If you would like to learn more about strength training or learn how to use dumbbells and kettlebells, why not sign up to one of our online courses? We will teach you all you need to know about both pieces of equipment.