The Alternating Kettlebell Swing exercise is a challenging movement that requires full body engagement and coordination. Performing it correctly requires proper timing and practice. Be sure to keep the following cues in mind with each workout.
When you reach the top of the Alternating Swing exercise, your eyes should be staring straight forward. This does two things; it allows you to see when you switch from one hand to the other, as well as help you maintain a neutral spine.
Switch Hands at Top of Rep
The hand switch of the Alternating Swing exercise should be done at the apex of the swing when the kettlebell is essentially weightless. Your wrists should both be completely straight during the switch. If you find that one or both wrists are bent, it means that you tried to switch hands too late.
Rep Ends with Body Standing Straight Up
Your body should be completely vertical at the top of each repetition. This means that your shoulders are stacked above your hips which are in turn stacked above your knees and ankles. This alignment of your entire body ensures that you are keeping your back straight throughout the exercise.
Maintaining a neutral spine at the top of the rep will require you to keep your chest proud, shoulders tucked, and core tight. While this should be done throughout the exercise, it is especially important when you’re switching hands. As the kettlebell is caught by your opposite hand and gravity drags it back down, your spinal alignment will be pivotal in preventing injury.
Don't Over-Extend Lumbar
If you find that you are arching backward at the top of the rep, that means that you are over-extending your lower back. Remember, the kettlebell swing is an explosive movement for the hips, not the back. Always seek to maintain a straight back throughout the exercise.
Arms End Up Parallel to Floor
At the end of the rep, your arms should end up parallel to the ground, aimed straight out in front of you. If you find that they aren’t reaching this level, it means that you didn’t put enough power into the beginning of the rep. Conversely, if you find that your arms are flying above this level, you put too much power into the rep. Use just enough power to get your arms level.
Feet More than Shoulder-Width Apart
In order to allow the kettlebell to travel between your legs at the start of the rep, make sure that your feet are slightly more than shoulder-width apart.
The Alternating Kettlebell Swing is an excellent and challenging exercise. Remember each of these cues next time you fire up your Atlas Wristband for a kettlebell workout.