Adjustable kettlebells buyers guide
Kettlebells are an extraordinary tool for building overall fitness.
Kettlebell training can help you gain muscle, lose fat, increase strength, boost power and enhance endurance.
The unique design of the kettlebell allows it be used for presses, pulls, swings, carries, throws, jumps and more.
In countries like Russia, the kettlebell’s history as a training implement dates back hundreds of years. The western world adopted them more recently, and kettlebells are now a common sight in gyms across the globe.
High-profile kettlebell evangelists such as Joe Rogan have only further increased their popularity. Many fitness companies have now given the classic kettlebell design a modern twist to create what are known as adjustable kettlebells.
Adjustable kettlebells offer all the benefits of traditional kettlebells while avoiding what is perhaps their biggest shortcoming.back to menu ↑
What are the best adjustable kettlebells?
For individuals looking for a smart alternative to traditional kettlebells, adjustable kettlebells are a stellar option.
They’re especially attractive for those who like to exercise at home or who need highly-portable training equipment (such as individuals who frequently travel).
However, not all adjustable kettlebells are created equal.
For your convenience, we’ve compiled a list of the best adjustable kettlebells currently available for sale.back to menu ↑
What are Adjustable Kettlebells?
At first glance, an adjustable kettle doesn’t appear so different from a traditional kettlebell.
Both look a bit like a cannon ball or a cinder block with a handle attached to it.
But while traditional kettlebells feature a fixed weight which cannot be adjusted, adjustable kettlebells feature a unique design that allows the user to easily increase or decrease their mass on demand.back to menu ↑
What are the Benefits of Adjustable Kettlebells?
An adjustable kettlebell offers all the amazing fitness benefits of traditional kettlebells albeit in a smaller, more affordable package.
Training with adjustable kettlebells is a form of resistance training.
Resistance training requires us to use our body to move an external load. Done consistently over time, resistance training leads to adaptations in our bodies that make us better and more efficient at whatever tasks are included in our workouts.
Depending on your training and recovery protocols, these adaptations can include fat loss, increased muscle mass, increased strength, improved balance/coordination, enhanced endurance and increased power. Other key benefits of regular resistance training include improved mood, greater confidence, better sleep, more energy and sharper focus.
Compared to other popular resistance training methods such as barbells, dumbbells and exercise machines, kettlebells possess a few key advantages.
While barbells more easily allow one to handle very heavy loads, kettlebells are better for unilateral training.
Unilateral training is exercise that focuses on one limb at a time — for example, a single-arm kettlebell military press. Unilateral training enhances core stability, reduces muscle asymmetries and aids in injury prevention. Kettlebells also allow for an extraordinary amount of exercise variety while barbells, with their more unwieldy design, are more limited.
Kettlebells are similar to dumbbells in many ways. Both feature a dedicated handle. Both offer high levels of versatility. And both increase in size as their weight goes up.
However, kettlebells have a slightly different center of mass than dumbbells due to a more spherical or cylindrical design. Because of this, kettlebells tend to be a bit more practical for ballistic and power-based exercises such as the kettlebell swing, kettlebell snatch and kettlebell clean & jerk.
Compared to exercise machines, kettlebells do a superior job of activating our stabilizer muscles, which are the smaller muscles throughout our body that help us move efficiently.
This is because kettlebells require us to control their mass in all planes of motion simultaneously, while machines typically require control in just one plane at a time. Trying to replicate the whole-body fitness impact of a move like the kettlebell turkish get-up on a machine is all but impossible.
The key differentiator between traditional kettlebells and adjustable kettlebells is the latter’s easily adjustable nature.
Since traditional kettlebells have a fixed weight, many exercisers often require a rack of five or more kettlebells of varying weights to successfully execute their fitness program.
While this may work fine in a commercial gym, purchasing and storing so many kettlebells yourself can be exceedingly expensive and inconvenient.
Enter the adjustable kettlebell.
While this genius device essentially offers the same versatility as an entire rack of traditional kettlebells, it takes up just a fraction of the space and is often far more affordable.
The result is a fitness Swiss Army knife that makes a great addition to anyone’s training routine.back to menu ↑
How to Choose the Best Adjustable Kettlebells for You
Finding the perfect adjustable kettlebell for you depends on factors including your budget, training level, fitness goals and current equipment. It also depends on how you rank the importance of items like durability, ease of use, comfort and safety.
As with any type of weight training equipment, heavier weights are more expensive than lighter weights. And as a general rule of thumb, adjustable kettlebell models that allow for a more seamless adjustment in resistance tend to be more expensive than those where the process is more cumbersome. Additionally, options that include weights tend to reflect that luxury in their cost.
Choices like the Bowflex SelectTech, PEAKFORM Fitness and Jpodream Adjustable Kettlebells come with weights included and offer high ease of use and easy storability. Meanwhile, the Apex Heavy-Duty and NewMe Fitness Adjustable Kettlebells represent budget-friendly options for those who already own weight plates. Their higher weight capacities may also make them more attractive to experienced exercisers.
It’s also important to know your own training ability and goals. If you prioritize higher-rep exercise and don’t envision the desire to use a kettlebell weighing more than 12 pounds, your investment should reflect that approach.
No matter which adjustable kettlebell you choose, all of these options can deliver the incredible benefits of kettlebell training in a relatively small, convenient and cost-efficient package.