The Right Way to Swing a Kettlebell

Not a Kettlebell SwingChoosing the wrong kettlebell swing can ruin your set.


The pendulum swing moves heavy weight for longer sets without sapping your energy, but you won’t be breaking any speed records. If you’re shooting for a high rep count, you’ll need to move a tad quicker. The hip hinge swing moves the same weight quickly, but in a ten minute set you’ll be out of gas long before you’re out of time.

Why not learn a variety of swing styles and strategize your choice during the set to fit your desired outcome?

Here’s just a few:

Single-handed Swings

one kettlebell; aka, “unilateral swings”

  • Pendulum*
  • Hip Hinge*
  • Squat*
  • Rocker*
  • Lunge Swing
  • Weave Swing

Double-handed Swings

both hands on one kettlebell; although useful on their own, these are uncommon in kettlebell sport

  • Pendulum
  • Squat
  • High Pull
  • Hard Style, aka, “Russian Swing”
  • Overhead, aka “American Swing”

Bilateral Swings

one kettlebell in each hand

  • Pendulum*
  • Hip Hinge*
  • Squat*
  • Outside

*integral to Kettlebell Sport (aka, Girevoy Sport) lifts- snatch, jerk, and clean & jerk

My over-achiever self has decided to make videos to demonstrate each of these swings.. Unfortunately, that particular part of myself doesn’t operate in a reality confined by space and time like the wife, mom, and business owner parts of me. So this post may take a (long) while to complete 🙂 For now I’ll link to content created by some of the best coaches in the industry and post updates as I contribute my own content.

Just curious..

Who are the Kettlebell coaches and athletes you follow?
What are some of the benefits or dangers you’ve heard of or experienced with kettlebell swings?

Leave a response in the comments or email me at

Happy lifting!

Coach Jen 🙂

Check out these swing demonstrations:

Ken & Mitch Blackburn demo the mechanics of the Squat Swing and how it is used in the clean

My coach, Master of Sport, JT Netterville demonstrates Hard Style and Overhead Swings

Dr. Mark Cheng breaks down the basics of the Hard Style, aka, “Russian Swing”

Mike Mahler owns two 32kg bells using the Outside Swing technique