This Single Kettlebell Complex Will Build Your Entire Body

Kettlebells don’t always come in neat pairs like dumbbells. Fortunately, you only need one weight to work your entire body with this complex by Omar Bolden, former Broncos safety and Super Bowl 50 champ. Bolden cranks out a single-arm kettlebell clean to squat, then goes into a rotational press.

The single-bell strategy is about more than just convenience. By using an offset load, you significantly increase how hard your abs and obliques have to work during each phase of the exercise to keep your body in a straight vertical line.

“Keep a super tight core when doing this,” says Men’s Health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., explaining that total body tension is critical to owning the kettlebell rack position and getting the most muscle-building benefits. It will also help keep you from arching your lower back, which is a common mistake when performing cleans as well as overhead presses.

If you need a solid kettlebell for the workout, check out this one from Onnit.

That tension also applies to your arms; keep your loaded wrist straight and elbow directly underneath it like Bolden does in this video. This allows you to hold more weight, stay efficient in your movements, and keep your shoulder happy.

If you have existing shoulder issues or pain during overhead presses, you can easily skip that part of the complex. Still perform the clean and squat, then instead of pressing overhead as you rotate your body to one side, simply rotate, keeping the weight in the rack position. You will still attack your abs, but will reduce the workload on your shoulder.

With this complex, we recommend going for time: Rep it out for 40 seconds on, rest for 20 more, repeating for a total of 3 to 4 minutes. This will allow you to push yourself with each set. Choose a weight that feels challenging, but controllable.

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