Don’t Ignore These Two Common but Crucial Kettlebell Mistakes

by Keira Newton on February 3, 2016

Two Kettlebell Mistakes Keira Newton

As a Master RKC, I travel a lot. I love my job because I get to visit other gyms and teach people how to teach kettlebell technique according to the highest standards in the industry—RKC standards. In the past few years of teaching, I have noticed two commonly missed mistakes. These are simple fixes in my eyes, and easy to teach. So lets get started.

The Deadlift:

The deadlift is the basis of almost every kettlebell lift. It IS the foundation of what we do. However, I have seen people skip the deadlift altogether… (How will they learn the swing? How will that work?) Or they simply miss the most important part of the deadlift: the set up and how to work underneath the kettlebell.

In my experience, I’ve observed that people who are given a small kettlebell, are tall, tight in the hamstrings, or tight in the hips will round the low back to pick up the kettlebell. The cure for this? RAISE THE FLOOR. It’s such a simple fix, but it will help 99% of your students. I use it with almost all of my new students. The video below includes a short demo of this technique. Give it a try.

The Swing:

I think it is safe to assume we all know the kettlebell swing can be fantastic if performed correctly—and deadly if not. This is no joke. When training a client, or in your own training, you must know exactly what happens with this ballistic lift. The most common mistake I see from my clients and students (which is also the most missed among new trainers) is in the TIMING of the swing. While watching someone’s swing, if it looks like they are moving to the toes, swinging below the knees, or lifting the kettlebell with their arms, then their timing is off.

To fix the timing, tell your client to wait until the kettlebell has passed below the belly button, or their arms have touched their ribs after swinging the kettlebell forward before moving their hips back. It will seem almost as if the kettlebell will hit you where it hurts, and you get out of the way just in time. But, let’s make sure that happens okay? 🙂

Hope the video below helps you understand. Enjoy!



Kiera Newton, Master RKC, Level 3 Z-Health, MCT, PCC. Keira first picked up a kettlebell in 2005 when her husband challenged her to stop laughing and start swinging. She stuck with the challenge when she realized that she could get an all-in-one workout in a fraction of the time she spent at the gym. Keira was convinced… Read more here.

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