The kettlebell snatch is a brilliant full-body exercise, however, I never thought I would do 100 of them a day for a week. In fact, the thought of doing 100 kettlebell snatches a day for a week filled me with dread, not because the movement is difficult, but because 100 kettlebell snatches can take a while. Additionally, kettlebell movements can often be significantly more difficult than exercises using a dumbbell. More on that later.
But, another day, another challenge, so I grabbed a kettlebell and got snatched. Also, I wanted to see if I would notice any changes in my body or in my overall physical condition. Read on to find out what happened.
What is a kettlebell snatch?
Essentially, it’s a full-body exercise that helps build power and strength, while working the cardiovascular system (AKA, heart, and lungs) to improve fitness. More, studies (opens in a new tab) found that kettlebell training was effective in maintaining or improving cardiovascular conditioning.
To do a kettlebell snatch, start with the kettlebell on the floor between your feet, keeping your feet hip-width apart. Push your hips back, keeping a flat back, and lower your left arm. Grasp the handle of the kettlebell with your left hand, swing the kettlebell behind you, between your legs and, standing, straighten your knees, raise your left shoulder and swing the kettlebell up, raising your arm above your head . Keep the core engaged throughout. As the kettlebell passes overhead, swing it over your hand, so the kettlebell rests on the back of your hand. Lock the left arm before returning the kettlebell forward and lowering the arm. Here is a video for clarity:
I Did 100 Kettlebell Snatches A Day For A Week – Here’s What Happened
To keep things balanced, I chose to do 50 kettlebell snatches on each arm. Rather than alternate arms, I decided to do 50 with the left arm then 50 with the right.
Just to clarify, you can do snatches with dumbbells as well, however, kettlebells take the edge off in my opinion. But, snatches with a kettlebell are more difficult. With a kettlebell snatch, there’s quite a bit of swing involved and I feel like my posterior chain stays engaged longer and more evenly because the kettlebell isn’t really touching the ground much.
In short, 100 kettlebell grips a day. Here is what happened :
My arms were on fire
Personally, for me, my upper body is noticeably weaker than my lower body, so any movement involving my arms, done repetitively, tends to hurt a little. But 100 kettlebell snatches every day for a week slightly fired up my shoulders and biceps. On days when I used a heavier weight (16kg kettlebell) it was much more noticeable.
My back was tight
Since the kettlebell snatch activates the entire posterior chain (buttocks, hamstrings, and back), it makes sense that my back started hurting a little. After day 3 I had to roll some more foam on my back, although that tended to be when I was using the 16kg kettlebell rather than my usual 12kg.
The fact that I was using a heavier weight will certainly have had an impact on that; in hindsight, I should have lost weight and gone a little lighter.
The kettlebell snatch is a great full-body move
Honestly, it’s not just upper body or full body days that the kettlebell snatch is suitable for. I added it in a lower body finisher, along with some dumbbell front squats, and I really felt it in my glutes and hamstrings. Obviously those muscles were already fired up from my leg day workout, but the kettlebell snatches certainly added an extra burn. It’s so important to make sure your form is perfect with the kettlebell snatch because it also requires muscle in your back, and you could hurt yourself if you don’t engage your back muscles properly.
As a personal trainer, I was able to complete this challenge relatively stress-free, but if you’re new to movement or returning to exercise after an injury, it’s worth checking out your form with a personal trainer. .
My Apple Watch is almost done in A&E
A regular dumbbell snatch won’t have this effect, however, the kettlebell snatch nearly broke my screen. Apple Watch 8. Lifting the kettlebell above my head, the rocking motion of the kettlebell on the back of my left hand meant that the 12kg kettlebell I was using pretty much hit my watch every time. Obviously to stop this I took off my watch, but since I’m pretty anal with my workout tracking, I can’t say I was too happy to have minutes of my workout go unrecognized. May I add that I am aware that this is a first world problem.
I was bruised
Besides nearly breaking my watch, the move I explained above also resulted in minor bruising on my forearm. It’s nothing serious, but I threw a few swear words around the gym.
I highly recommend wearing sweatbands on your wrists when doing 100 kettlebell snatches every day for a week. This will help absorb some of the impact of the kettlebell. Unfortunately, I only thought about it after the seven days were up.
I was out of breath
Thanks to the constant movement of the kettlebell snatch and also the fact that it recruits so many muscles, it also makes it a very good cardio movement. After just 20 reps, I had to drop the kettlebell and take a quick breath! I love that the kettlebell snatch really is a great 2-in-1 move; working so many muscles and giving my heart and lungs a nice attack too!
I did 100 kettlebell snippets a day for a week – my verdict
I love a snatch, so the move itself wasn’t new, but the number of reps certainly was. I felt it all over my body, and it really got my heart rate up, which is something I aim to do in all my workouts.
Other than the minor bruises and the near death incident of the Apple Watch, everything went well with this challenge and I loved the feeling of getting fitter and stronger. Will I incorporate more kettlebell snippets into my diet? Yes I love them!
Next: Find out what happened when this fitness writer did bicep curls every day for a week.
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