Kettlebells are an alternative hand-held weight to classic dumbbells.
They got their name by resembling an old world tea kettle suspended by a metal handle.
Instead of straight bar grips, they usually feature ergonomic hand-shaped ring grips.
They have made a striking reemergence on the modern fitness scene because of certain exercise regimens that use them extensively.
The Different Types
The bells differ in design, material and coating. They can be constructed of cast iron, cement, or even nylon.
The coating is often made of enamel or vinyl.
Each material has its pros and cons, and is suitable for different kinds of athletes.
I will compare the different materials and coatings in the reviews.
Here are my reviews of the six best kettlebell models:
CAP Barbell Enamel Coated Cast Iron
This set is perfect for people who like bells that are similar to the older models.
They are perfect for swinging exercises because they are made from a single piece of non-corrosive iron.
CrossFit enthusiasts love them because they can be used indoors and outdoors in any weather condition.
– set includes bells from 10-80 lbs.
– each bell is impervious to denting and rust damage
– extremely precise weight balance for each pair of bells
– stamped markers indicating weights
Who Are They Good For?
There are two aspects that you need to consider before buying.
First, the hard enamel outer coating is easy to chip. If weight impacting is a factor in training, these might not be the right bells.
Also, the handles are very wide and thick, and contain a good portion of the bells’ overall weight. Small hands might perform better with smaller grips.
CAP Barbell Vinyl Coated Cement
This bell has an ergonomic improvement over the company’s cast iron models.
The handle of each bell is consistently shaped, and the weight is located in the bell body.
This means a more diverse crowd can use these bells without having to posses an Olympic grip.
– thick vinyl coating for indoor and outdoor use
– easy-to-clean surface
– wide, flat bottom for balance on utility shelves and workout surfaces
– non-slip, non-friction grips
How Does Concrete Compare To Cast Iron?
These are very sleek and professional-looking kettlebells for home and gym use.
There is one setback in their construction.
The weight bodies are made from concrete. This means that forceful drops can cause cracks in the bell bodies.
Though this is unlikely, it is a consideration when choosing the right bell for a particular workout style.
Iron Kettlebells 5-100 lbs. By Body Solid
Some of the new interest in kettlebell training is due to the extreme strength training found in sports like CrossFit, Highland Games competitions, and Strongest Man/Woman events.
This set is appropriate for people training for these events because they are classically designed, with extended weight options.
– wide grips for extremely strong hands
– extended weights up to 100 lbs. per bell (that’s a 200 lb. carry)
– enamel shell for outdoor use without corrosion and rust
– flat bell bottoms for balance
– blunt force resistance (can be dropped, thrown, pounded etc. without damage)
The Good And Bad Of Enamel Coating
Again, like other enamel-coated sets, chipping can occur.
Chipping makes the bells look worn and can cause callouses on the hands.
Fortunately, the type of people who normally require this heavy kettlebell set will see wear and tear as positive “battle scars.”.
This is a highly recommended set for people who workout hard and care little about aesthetics.
Gymenist Exercise Kettlebell
Part of the reason that kettlebells fell out of popularity was because they are sometimes intimidating to use.
Hunks of cast iron might be hard to approach for some women and perhaps new members of a gym environment.
These bells are attractive and have the look of inviting pieces of modern gym equipment.
– bright, and coordinated colored vinyl coating delineating weight classes
– soft grips for all hands
– lighter weight classes (3-50 lbs.)
– no rough or welded surfaces
The Pros Of Vinyl Coating
These are ideal for body-blast and aerobics fitness courses geared primarily toward women.
They have strong fashion appeal, and contribute to a fun and high energy workout environment.
They can be lifted, swung, pressed, carried, passed, and handled by people of all fitness levels.
Fitness Solutions LLC Hammertone
These bells are a great way to combine hardcore workouts, with visual appeal and long life.
Similar-shaped bells have only a solid coat enamel outer layer, which is subject to chipping.
Hammertone kettlebells have a patented Hammertone finish. This is a multi-coat paint and enamel layer that resists the hardest treatment.
Chipping is rare, and corrosion is virtually non-existent.
– wide handles for single and double hand grips
– flat bell bottoms for balance on weight shelves, and in push-up exercises
– cool Hammertone finish that is ultra fashionable, glossy and attractive
– wide weight variety with clear weight class markers
How Do They Compare To Other Kettlebells?
With these bells chipping is quite rare, and there is virtually no corrosion.
These are the best bells for a gym that has an even balance of hardcore lifters, and alternative exercise fans.
They are ideal for all types of people who require weights during a workout since they look great, and last forever.
PKB Set-Adjustable, Portable And Soft
This kettlebell/bag hybrid is a special mention for anyone wanting an innovative way to get a kettlebell workout anywhere.
Instead of bulk iron, this versatile bag is designed to make workouts possible anywhere.
Fill it with rocks, sand, iron, or anything else that is weighty.
This bag/bell has reinforced components to handle extreme weights.
Use it as a piece of luggage for travel, then fill it with anything you choose at your destination for a great kettlebell-assisted workout.
– super strong seams and sidewalls
– non-friction double handle for intense use
– perfect, loose balance
– convenient size and traditional mock-kettlebell shape
– unbelievable weather resistance for long life
Unique And Versatile
The main reason this convertible piece of equipment receives a special mention, is how it melds utility and standard workout equipment needs, with the problems that busy people face in maintaining their fitness.
The PKB bag helps people control the intensity of their workouts even though they only have non-gym spaces in which to workout. Perhaps this is how the kettlebell will gain a true revival in the future.
The kettlebell reviews listed above are some of the most popular and best models available.
Though it is a relatively simple piece of versatile resistance equipment, it can be intimidating to use at first. Here is a good video if you are just getting started:
If you are still unsure of how to use them you can take a few classes that integrate them into the program or get a trainer to demonstrates the best ways to use them.
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