Kettlebell jerk - the right technique, breathing

Kettlebell jerk is a classic kettlebell lifting exercise. It is performed at competitions along with the push of two weights. Shells of three different weights are used: 16, 24 and 32 kg. Traditionally, exercises with weights were the prerogative of weightlifting athletes. However, today kettlebell lifting has regained popularity and training using this projectile is carried out in a variety of disciplines, in particular in crossfit.

Many fitness clubs are equipped with weights; interest in such activities is shown not only by men, but also by girls.

Why do the exercise?

The jerk of a weight of 16 kg (poods) is included in the list of tests for passing the standards of the TRP. The technique of the exercise in this case remains unchanged. Within 4 minutes, the athlete continuously performs the exercise, and the judges count the number of repetitions. In particular, to obtain a gold badge of the TRP, a man under 40 needs to jerk 16 kg of the projectile 40 times.

Kettlebell jerk - the right technique, breathing
Kettlebell lifting began to appear in the 50s of the last century, and now has gained great popularity.

In order to perform the kettlebell jerk cleanly, the athlete must have physical strength, flexibility and the ability to precisely coordinate movements. What kind of muscles work during a jerk? This exercise involves almost all muscle groups and requires tremendous physical and energy returns. Kettlebell lifting is a powerful tool for the development of general physical fitness, strength and coordination.

The inclusion of the “jerk” exercise in the training program leads to the following positive effects:

  • The development of strength and growth of the muscles of the back, legs, and other muscle groups.

  • Strengthening brushes and increasing grip strength.
  • Improving strength endurance and functional capabilities of the body, mastering the breathing technique.
  • Training of coordination of movements and ability to tighten and relax muscles under control.
  • Development of speed indicators.

It is better to start mastering the jerk of the kettlebell by working out the movements that make up it.

The technique is honed with a minimum weight of 16 kg, and then the mass of the projectile increases. For girls, 16 kg can be too much weight, so it’s worth saying that many fitness clubs have special women's shells weighing less than 10 kg.

Kettlebell jerk - the right technique, breathing
For girls, a weight of 16 kg may be too heavy, so it is recommended to use lighter shells.

As preparatory exercises, you can also use the usual deadlift and army bench press.

Kettlebell lifting implies various variations of exercises.

The competitive jerk option involves lifting the kettlebell in a standing position with one hand, transferring the projectile and performing movement with the other hand without interruption. The same technique is used when passing the TRP standards.

Kettlebell jerk - the right technique, breathing
Weights of 16 kg are used when passing the TRP standards.

The initial position may vary: the weight can be placed in the middle in front of the athlete or behind one of the legs. You can also perform jerking while sitting, in order for one reason or another to exclude the work of the leg muscles.

And finally, a jerk of two weights at once can be performed simultaneously or alternately.

Jerk technique

The weight jerk is usually divided into several phases or stages that differ in the mechanics of movement.

We list them:

  1. Starting position. At this stage, the athlete must take the correct starting position, which will allow him to perform the jerk in the best way. The weight is placed at the distance of the foot from the feet exactly in the middle.

    The athlete puts his feet shoulder width apart, bends his legs, straightens his back. The lower back remains a natural deflection. The shell is grabbed with a palm on top, the second hand is straight to the side.

  2. Swing. Due to the partial extension of the knees, the weight breaks off and on a straight arm, as on a swing, sweeps between the legs for a subsequent jerk forward.

  3. Undermining. From the swing with a powerful short-term effort, the weight breaks forward. This is done at the moment when she returned to the lowest point (found herself on the line of the feet), due to the simultaneous extension of the legs, lifting on the socks, raising the shoulder and extension of the body. Going down, the kettlebell has already gained some inertia. After detonation, the projectile picks up speed and flies up to a dead center.

    The hand holding the weight remains straight. The point is to adhere to this rule in maintaining a rigid frame between the kettlebell, arm, body and legs. The second hand is still laid aside.

  4. Squat At that moment, when the dispersed projectile takes off to the highest point and the force is no longer applied to it, the athlete slightly bends the working arm at the elbow and quickly crouches under the weight. At this stage, the elbow bend and slightly bent knees are designed to soften the reception of the falling weight as much as possible.

    The hand turns outward, and the weight describes an arc around it and comes behind the forearm.

  5. Commit. The athlete straightens his hand with a kettlebell and extends his legs. In this position, he remains until the judge’s command that the exercise is counted (when passing the TRP test it is from 0.5 sec.

    ). With self-training at the upper point, you can hold on for a second or more if you need to restore breathing.

  6. Lowering. To perform subsequent repetitions, the projectile is not put on the floor, movements are performed from the hang. A kettlebell can fall to a lower point in two ways - on a straight arm (pendulum) or due to the gradual bending of the arm.

    The first method is good because it preserves the inertia of the projectile and does not reduce the speed of the exercise. Plus, in the upright position, the arm muscles can rest a bit. The second method is designed to reduce the risk of injury to the hand, however, the muscles are constantly under stress.

  7. Swing for interception and interception. In order to change the working arm, the athlete, after the next swing, makes the weight undermine to the dead point and intercepts the bow.

    The kettlebell lowers again in a swing, and jerking begins with the other hand. The technique of movements is completely similar to the one described above.

Kettlebell jerk - the right technique, breathing
Phase of the jerk: 1 - start, 2 - swing, 3 - detonation, 4 - seat, 5 - fixation, 6 - lowering, 7-9 - swing for shift Rukov, 10-13 - jerk with the second hand.

During the jerk, the athlete may be in a low or high stance. In the first case, a significant angle is observed in the hip joints, and the kettlebell sweeps over the floor itself.

With a high stance, the posture is more straight, the angles at the knees and hips are much smaller and the projectile sweeps at the level of the knees. It is more beneficial in terms of saving muscle energy, however, it injures the hand more severely.


Among other things, kettlebell lifting involves a clear development of breathing techniques. If you do not pay attention to this, the body will not receive enough oxygen for intensive work, which will certainly affect the results. Muscles will quickly tire, and the desired benefits of training will result in harm.

Kettlebell jerk - the right technique, breathing
If breathing is improper, the muscles quickly tire. Strength sports involves exhaling while making an effort and inhaling in the phase of muscle relaxation.

During the jerk, breathing can be performed in 2, 3 cycles or more. The best option is 3 cyclic breathing:

  1. Inhale - lifting weights from the floor.
  2. Exhale is the end of an explosion.

  3. Inhale is a squat.
  4. Exhale - straightening the body and arms.
  5. Inhale - lowering the kettlebell from the highest point to chest level.
  6. Exhale - lowering the projectile up to leaving in the backswing.

In the event that oxygen is still not enough, the athlete can do several breathing cycles at the time of fixation.

This will slow down the speed of the exercise, but will provide an opportunity to restore oxygen reserves. If you need fast and short-term operation, the number of cycles per lift can be reduced.

Having mastered the jerk of the kettlebell, you can proceed to the development of a more complex element - push. You should also start with 16 kg. Or, if you just love weight lifting, and participating in competitions or getting the TRP badge is not part of your plans, you can limit yourself to simpler exercises.

Power juggling

In addition to what is a weight-lifting sport in its classical manifestation, there is still such a discipline as power juggling. This, one might say, art, historically came from circus performances. Juggling involves throwing shells weighing 16 kg and 8 kg (in women) and performing various tricks to the music. One athlete or a whole team can perform.

Performance juggling programs include up to 30 different types of throws, as well as choreographic elements.

In other words, this is not only a sport, but also a spectacular performance. In competitions, not only the technique of performing the exercises, but also the artistry of the performers, is taken into account.



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