Carve Your Core and Build You Back and Shoulders with This Kettlebell Flow

Photo credit: kupicoo - Getty Images
Photo credit: kupicoo - Getty Images

Classic abs moves such as V-sits, bicycle crunches and plank variations are not without their merits. But there are far more dynamic, not to mention efficient ways to train your core.

The half-kneeling kettlebell snatch to windmill might have a clunky name (we’d opt for ‘HKSTW’ when jotting it down in your Notes app), but it’s a smooth, fast flow that will develop strength in your abs while raising your heart rate and adding muscle to your back and shoulders. In other words, it’s an invaluable tool if your goal is bigger lifts, better posture or beach muscle.

‘This is a total-body move masquerading as a core move,’ says Ebenezer Samuel, coach and fitness director at Men’s Health US. ‘If your core is weak, you’ll struggle to complete the flow.’

The more you practise, however, the stronger your core will become. Aim for three sets of six reps per side and build up to a weight that feels challenging but allows for fluid, controlled movement.

Kneel and Deliver

Start in a half-kneeling stance, your right foot in front of you. Using your right hand, tip a kettlebell towards you; tighten your abs and squeeze your shoulder blades.

Swing for Strength

Keeping your core tight, and your hips and shoulders square to the front, aggressively pull the bell back between your legs. Push your bum back as you do this.

Explode Upwards

Swing the bell forwards, thrusting your hips forwards, then aggressively
pull it towards your shoulder. Punch upwards as it reaches shoulder height, straightening your arm.

Brace and Twist

Keeping your eyes on the bell, push your bum back and rotate your torso until your left hand touches the floor. Squeeze your shoulder blades, then brace your abs and glutes and drive your torso back to upright. That’s 1 rep; do 6, then switch sides.

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