Body fat and weight is determined mostly by the amount of calories you eat and the energy you use to burn fat through exercise. Women are especially susceptible to storing fat in the belly area. Post-menopausal women may see a body fat shift from other parts of the body to the belly area. Belly fat in women poses serious health consequences, such as Type 2 diabetes, breast cancer, colorectal cancer and cardiovascular disease. Kettlebell workouts provide a challenging way to reduce dangerous fat by strengthening muscles and burning fat from the entire body, including the belly.
Spot Reduction Myth
It is not possible to design a workout or do a single type of exercise that will reduce body fat on a specific body area. Spot reduction of fat is a myth. The best way to reduce belly fat is to do fat-burning exercises that jump start your metabolism to burn fat all over your body. Fat-blasting aerobic exercise combined with a healthy, low-fat diet is the best way to lose weight and get rid of fat.
Using the correct technique for kettlebells is imperative to avoid injury and get the most benefit from your workout. Start with a lightweight kettlebell, around 10 to 15 pounds. Use a lighter kettlebell if you are out of shape or have difficulty lifting the weight. Get instruction from a fitness professional who is qualified to train in kettlebell technique and exercises. Practice using kettlebells after you have received instruction, gradually transitioning to heavier weights.
The kettlebell swing exercise not only helps burn body fat by stimulating your metabolism, but also improves hip strength and trims the buttocks. Perform the kettlebell swing in a squat position. Hold the kettlebell using both hands with your palms over the handle, pointed down toward the floor. Swing the kettlebell back and forth between your legs. On the upswing, lift the kettlebell until your arms are parallel with the floor.
Kettlebells can work the lower body effectively. Do kettlebell lifts using your arms or your legs. Stand with your feet about hip-width apart and place a kettlebell beside each foot. Keep your back straight and squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Grasp a kettlebell in each hand and then push your body back to a standing position. Do eight to 10 repetitions. Perform leg dead lifts by sitting on the edge of a bench or chair and lifting a kettlebell with your leg. Place your foot inside the handle of the kettlebell and straighten your leg to lift the weight off the floor about 12 inches. Do eight to 10 repetitions with each leg.
- MayoClinic.com: Belly Fat in Women: Taking and Keeping It Off
- American Council on Exercise: Why Is the Concept of Spot Reduction Considered a Myth?
- Kettlebell, Inc.: Kettlebell FAQs
- Fitbe: 15 Minute Workout: Take Hold of a Hot Bod
- Nick Tumminell's Performance University: Weight Training / Kettlebell Workouts for Women and Six Pack Abs Secrets Revealed by Neghar Fonooni
- Shape: 22 Men's Exercises Women Should Do
Robin Reichert is a certified nutrition consultant, certified personal trainer and professional writer. She has been studying health and fitness issues for more than 10 years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of San Francisco and a Master of Science in natural health from Clayton College.