Kettlebells: American style, Hard style or Competition style?

If you know me already, you know I am in love with kettlebells. Like love crush type of. Really! I love them so much that I miss them when I betray them for a barbell. Kettlebells were the ones that initiated me into the world of fitness and strength. The rhythm I get with them is like we are one. Kettlebell lovers will know what I am talking about.



I started to do RKC aka Hardstyle. Turkish get ups of course were the first moves to learn. Meditation is what I am talking about. If you get out of breath, out of focus or out of balance  when performing a get up, you might be screwed and sometimes hurt.

I had my first introduction to Girevoy Sport aka Kettlebell Competition style when I took a private intensive training Long-Cycle in Zagreb, Croatia years ago with Ivana (World Champion and Master of Sports) I could compare the differences and I still love the explosiveness of the hardstyle.

American style is the one I really don’t do, not even when I do crossfit. But, what are the differences? Technique and proposes. Following I write down some with a bit of history background.

Kettlebells were introduced in Russia back in the XVII and were used by the soviet army. Later on kettlebells have become a competition sport worldwide. If you like to swing, snatch, clean, press, squat, deadlift, row, you got the point, get some kettle bells on! Now let’s see the differences:


Hard Style Kettlebell training was popularized by Pavel Tsatsouline. The hard style of kettlebell training evolved in the 1980s to support the hard style of fighting. As in martial arts, the kettlebell hard style chooses power production over power conservation.


Kettlebell Competition has three type of lifts:the snatchjerk and the long jerk. There are 2 competition types: long cycle and biathlon.

Snatch: A single kettlebell is swung using one hand from between the knees to above the head in a single motion.

Jerk: Two kettlebells are grasped in each arm at shoulder level and stabilised in the ‘rack position’, then jerked above the head

Long Jerk: Two kettlebells are cleaned from knee level to shoulder level, then jerked to above the head (info:wikipedia)



American kettlebell workouts had technique differences with competition and RKC: overhead swing, snatch.

American kettlebell will be used at your crossfit box

Which style should you choose? Depends in what you want. Want to be strong and explosive: Hard style, want to go for competition sign in and choose your coach. Want to stay with your crossfit, you have the answer. But what is more important, it is that you train and learn from the best the techniques! Choose your coach and show up to training. Want fat lost? want to loose weight? choose a smart kettlebell plan! I lost half of my fat percentage with a proper kettlebell plan and a proper nutrition plan. You can do the same if is that what you are looking for. Want to know more about workout plans and nutrition plan? send me an email: Until next post.

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