Kettlebell Swing Form


by Becca Egan, BS, NASM-CPT

Exercise: Kettlebell (KB) Swing

Muscle Groups Targeted: Glutes, hamstrings, core

Importance: Great movement for developing lower body strength and power, as well as core (including lower back) stability. Bonus, it gets your heart pumping!

Proper Form: 

  • Start holding the kettlebell, standing tall, shoulders back, feet shoulder width apart. 
  • Give the KB a little bit of a swing with your arms to get momentum going.
  • Once the KB swings back, let the momentum pull your hips back and bend at the waist with slight bend in the knees. 
  • Once the KB is at the end of the back swing, brace your core, squeeze your glutes together, stand up with power, driving through your heels. The KB will swing up and your arms will be at a 90 degree angle from your body.
  • Tighten your core again so your back does not arch at the top of the swing.
  • Let the KB come back down and repeat.

Good Form

Bad Form


  • Use a kettlebell weight that you can't lift straight out away from your body with your arms. If you can, you will not be getting the full benefit of the exercise because you will not be utilizing the correct muscles. 
  • Think of the movement as more of a hinge in the waist, not bend int he knees. You shouldn't be squatting down at all. 
  • You should feel no work being down in your shoulders. Think of your arms as a leash for the KB. You are doing NO lifting with the arms.
  • Do not arch your back when you stand up.
  • Do not bend at your waist until the KB is bringing you down. 
  • Keep the KB above your knees, tight in to your groin area.

Sample Workout: 

10 Kettlebell swings
:40 plank
10 KB swings
:30 plank
10 KB swings
:20 plank

Working your core between will fire it up and you will feel it when you swing and realize how necessary it is to use on the KB swing movement

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