OK lets cut to the chase … you’re coach is absent for a few days and you’re looking for something to keep you moving and learning. Hell for that matter maybe you are looking for a way to enhance your core strength to help facilitate better Jiu-Jitsu? Well here’s 5 really great kettlebell exercises that you can do – just be careful not to OVER do them when starting out!
- Kettlebell Swings
Kettlebell swings are a foundational exercise for building explosive power in your hips and core, which is crucial in Jiu-Jitsu. This exercise mimics the hip movement used when executing a hip throw or escaping an opponent’s guard. Here’s how to perform kettlebell swings:
a. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding the kettlebell with both hands between your legs. b. Hinge at your hips, keeping your back straight and chest up. c. Swing the kettlebell forward and upward by snapping your hips forward. d. Let the kettlebell swing up to chest height, then reverse the motion by hinging your hips and letting it swing back between your legs. e. Repeat for 3 sets of 15-20 reps.
- Turkish Get-Ups
Turkish get-ups are a comprehensive exercise that enhances stability, strength, and mobility – all essential for Jiu-Jitsu. This exercise mirrors the fluid transitions and control required when transitioning between positions. To perform Turkish get-ups:
a. Lie on your back, holding the kettlebell in one hand with your arm extended toward the ceiling. b. Bend your knee on the same side as the kettlebell and plant your opposite foot. c. Using your free hand, push yourself onto your opposite elbow. d. Lift your hips off the ground and slide your bent leg under your body. e. Stand up while keeping the kettlebell extended overhead. f. Reverse the movements to return to the starting position. g. Complete 3 sets of 5 reps on each side.
- Kettlebell Goblet Squats
Strong legs and a solid base are essential for maintaining balance and controlling your opponent in Jiu-Jitsu. Kettlebell goblet squats help develop leg strength and improve overall lower body stability. Here’s how to do them:
a. Hold the kettlebell close to your chest with both hands, feet shoulder-width apart. b. Squat down while keeping your back straight and chest up. c. Go as low as you can while maintaining good form. d. Push through your heels to stand back up. e. Perform 3 sets of 10-12 reps.
- Kettlebell Rows
Upper body strength is vital in Jiu-Jitsu, especially when trying to control your opponent. Kettlebell rows target the muscles in your back and arms, helping you become a more formidable grappler. Here’s how to perform kettlebell rows:
a. Place one knee and one hand on a bench, with the kettlebell in your free hand. b. Keep your back parallel to the ground and your arm extended. c. Pull the kettlebell toward your hip, keeping your elbow close to your body. d. Lower the kettlebell back down. e. Complete 3 sets of 10-12 reps on each side.
- Kettlebell Russian Twists
Core strength is essential for maintaining balance, especially when rolling on the ground in Jiu-Jitsu. Kettlebell Russian twists are an effective exercise for building strong obliques. Here’s how to do them:
a. Sit on the floor with your knees bent and feet off the ground, holding the kettlebell with both hands. b. Lean back slightly, engage your core, and lift your feet off the ground. c. Rotate your torso to the left and then to the right, touching the kettlebell to the ground on each side. d. Complete 3 sets of 15-20 reps on each side.