AFRICANEWSWIRE.NET (November, 30 2011) Minneapolis, MN -- Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) athletes everywhere, including our very own Brock Lesnar, are putting down barbells and picking up kettlebells in large numbers. Many cite the need for increased full-body strength and explosiveness as the reason for the sudden demand for these balls of iron.
The kettlebell is a bowling ball-sized piece of cast iron with a grip handle attached. It was invented by Russian strongmen in the 18th century and was later adopted by their military. It has recently come back into favour with several athletes in mainstream sports such as football and hockey, but it is really in MMA gyms where kettlebells
are truly finding their homes.
Amateur MMA fighter Fotis Prevost has been a big proponent of using kettlebells almost exclusively in his training. He assigns a large share of his success to this mindset saying, “Kettlebells don’t give you useless, bulky muscle like bench pressing large amounts of weight does. Since I started using kettlebells
my explosiveness in wrestling and in striking has went through the roof.” Prevost’s confidence in the training methods appear well-founded, he has won 6 of his last 7 seven fights since incorporating kettlebell work into his routine.
The main advantage to using kettlebells is that they are built to simulate sport-specific motions. The weight is never perfectly centered in your grasp, but rather it is intentionally off center. This means that your muscles have to constantly adapt in order to stabilize momentum. Many of the exercises you perform with these unique weights are dynamic in nature and include multiple muscle groups as opposed to the standard isolation techniques. These features have endeared themselves to athletes whose needs are similar to those of their Russian founders hundreds of years ago.
Prevost and Lesnar are far from the only MMA competitors to pick up these weights; in fact, it’s getting rare to find one of these gladiators that doesn’t use these old fashioned pieces of workout equipment. Since they have such a basic design, you can purchase an entire kettlebell set for between two hundred and three hundred dollars at most strength and fitness locations.