8 Kettlebell Exercises For Abs With Sample Kettlebell Abs Workout

Using kettlebell ab exercises to create an effective workout will be very easy after reading the list we have curated for you. Kettlebell workouts don’t traditionally train the abdominals, but with these exercises you’ll be able to.

7 min read
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Written by
Sean Klein
Published on
02/05/22
Last updated
01/09/22
In This Resource
  • Why Kettlebell Training For The Core?
  • How To Use Kettlebells Ab Workouts and Exercises
  • Training Frequency for Abdominal Training
  • Use A Variety Of Movement Patterns For Kettlebell Ab Exercises
  • Anti-Extension
  • Anti-Rotation
  • Rotation
  • Use Progressive Overload
  • How Progressive Overload Works
  • Progressive Overload For Kettlebell Core Exercises
  • Sample Kettlebell Ab Workout
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Can You Get Abs From Kettlebell Workouts?
  • How Do I Tone My Stomach With Kettlebells?
  • Is Kettlebell Exercise A Good Core Workout?
  • References

Getting tired of just doing sit ups? Well if you have a kettlebell handy they can be surprisingly effective at developing the abs, even if you just have one lying around at home it can be a great tool to help your strength training efforts! Here we have 8 amazing ab exercises you can do with a single kettlebell, lets take a look.

Why Kettlebell Training For The Core?

Kettlebell training consists of so much more than just the kettlebell swing, its one of the best tools to work all the muscles in your body as well as your cardiovascular system. Kettlebell abs workout are one of the best ways to get the most out of your workout. A lot of people use them for strength training, but they can also be used to build up your core. If you're looking to improve your strength and endurance in your core, then kettlebell ab exercises are a great way to go.

A lot of people tend to think that a strong core is only useful for athletes or those who want to get into shape. While this is true, it's also important for everyday life. If you don't have good core strength, then you may wind up having back problems or even worse, injuries!

If you're not sure how to do a kettlebell ab workout then here are some tips:

  • Start off with some warm ups before you begin any kind of workout. This will help ensure that your body is ready for the exercises that follow.
  • You should always start by stretching out any muscles that might need it before starting on any type of exercise regimen. This will prevent injury and soreness later on down the road!
  • Make sure that you're doing all of these exercises with good form! If something hurts or feels wrong then stop immediately! You should never do anything that causes pain.
  • If you want all the benefits of kettlebell abdominal training, then make sure you use all the movement categories outlines below. Different kettlebell exercises have been shown to have different impacts on core activations(1).

    How To Use Kettlebells Ab Workouts and Exercises

    Training Frequency for Abdominal Training

    Using a training frequency of 2-3 times a week to train the full body including the core will likely result in long term success developing the abdominals.

    The abdominals are designed to be trained more frequently than most other muscles of the body. This is due to their role as a stabilizer and the fact that they are relatively small muscle groups. The low frequency approach that has been advocated by many fitness experts is often based on anecdotal evidence or personal experience, but there is no evidence that supports it.

    In fact, using a training frequency of 2-3 times a week to train the full body including the core will likely result in long term success developing the abdominals. While it's true that these muscles may not see significant increases in size every week, if you're training them properly and consistently over time, you can expect to see good results!

    This training frequency will also allow you to target all the different movement patterns within the cores ability.

    Use A Variety Of Movement Patterns For Kettlebell Ab Exercises

    Training the abs, also known as the core, involves 3 key movement patterns and kettlebells can be used to train all of them. Here are the three movement patterns with sample exercises for each.

    Anti-Extension

    The anti-extension movement pattern involves exercise that use weight or gravity to attempt to pull you out of a slight flexion whilst tensing the anterior core. In the glute bridge kettlebell pull over the weight of the kettlebell is pulling you into extension and through resisting this you are loading the anterior core and increasing its strength.

    Example

    Anti-Rotation

    The same concept as the anti-extension, the anti-rotation movement pattern involves using a weight to attempt to pull you from an upright position into rotation. Through resisting this rotation you are engaging the obliques and thereby strengthening the core.

    Example

    Rotation

    Finally we can improve the strength of the core using dynamic movement by incorporating the rotation movement pattern. This involve rotating the trunk dynamically. These movements are crucial for athletes as movements like these are performed constantly.

    Example

    Use Progressive Overload

    Progressive overload is the gradual increase in weight lifted, distance ran or repetitions completed over time. It's an important part of strength training and bodybuilding and can help you build muscle and burn fat.

    How Progressive Overload Works

    To build muscle, you must stimulate your muscles to grow larger. This happens when you place stress on your muscles, which causes micro-tears in the fibres. The body then repairs these tears by laying down new muscle tissue to replace the damaged tissue. This is how we grow stronger and bigger.

    Progressive overload works because it forces us to lift heavier weights than we're used to lifting, thus stimulating more muscle growth than if we simply did the same thing every day. As a result, our muscles get bigger and stronger so they can handle more weight and do more work than before — this is how we get stronger!

    Progressive Overload For Kettlebell Core Exercises

    This principle should be used with kettlebell ab exercises, by progressively overloading the stimulus on the body you will be able to lift more and more weight, seeing greater results each time.

    Sample Kettlebell Ab Workout

    Complete 3 rounds

    1. KB Suitcase Hold

    Hold for 10 seconds

    2. Glute Bridge Kettlebell Pullover

    Complete 8 repetitions

    3. Cross Chop

    Complete 6 repetitions

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Can You Get Abs From Kettlebell Workouts?

    Yes, but only if you play close attention to your diet. “Getting abs” is often much more about calorie balance than the type of exercises you use. Belly fat will always block abs no matter how much core training you do with a kettlebell. This doesn't by any means make kettlebell core exercises redundant, it just means that they have to be done in conjunction with a calorie deficit.

    How Do I Tone My Stomach With Kettlebells?

    Again this relates directly to calorie balance, a toned stomach comes from having low body fat, low body fat comes from an effective nutrition plan.

    Is Kettlebell Exercise A Good Core Workout?

    Yes. Kettlebells are an effective way to train the core, that doesn’t mean they are superior, it just means they are an effective tool to achieve a strong core.

    References

  • Andersen V, Fimland MS, Gunnarskog A, Jungård GA, Slåttland RA, Vraalsen ØF, Saeterbakken AH. Core Muscle Activation in One-Armed and Two-Armed Kettlebell Swing. J Strength Cond Res. 2016 May;30(5):1196-204. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000001240. PMID: 26473519.
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