Are Kettlebells The Latest Fad? A Look At The History of Kettlebells


I am often asked, “What is a cattleball?” or “Do you teach that cannonball training I see on TV?” Better yet, I often hear, “Kettlebells are just another new weight loss gimmick. Why use them, when I can use dumb bells or barbells, which have been around long before kettlebells?”

I go on to explain that kettlebells have been around a lot longer than the modern concept of fitness and exercise. I must thank great coaches such as Valery Federenko of the American & World Kettlebell Club (AKC/WKC), for introducing the Russian national sport of Girevoy Sport style of training, as well as Pavel Psatsouline, who essentially founded, introduced and help popularize the RKC (Russian Kettlbell Challenge) “Hard Style” of kettlebell training, to the West.

Both Russian natives, have made great strides in introducing this small, powerful tool, which has been a staple of strength in their home country for well over a century, as an efficient and effective all-in-one tool for strength, joint mobility, flexibility, fat loss, muscle building, increased endurance, prehab, rehab, stability, and much more.

Since the formal introduction of kettlebell training to the U.S. in the late 90’s & early 2000s, additional kettlebell instructors such as: Steve Cotter of the IKFF (International Kettlebell & Fitness Federation), Mike Mahler, Steve Maxwell, and Anthony DeLuglio, have championed with great passion, professionalism, and expertise, the use of the Russian kettlebell via various certification programs, workshops, seminars, books, DVDs, and more.

There are few training options, other than the human body itself, that prove more efficient and effective as a more complete tool for creating full body strength (mentally and physically). However, the point of this post is to showcase a video I found on one of my favorite web sites, Take a brief “visual” journey at the history of the Russian kettlebell.

Be sure to subscribe to this blog, as I continue to bring you more videos, workouts, and info regarding the use of tools such as Russian kettlebells, bodyweight training, and other tools to help today’s New Warrior & Warrior Goddess build the mental and physical toughness needed to win in today’s tough world.

By the way, what is your tool of choice to build mental and physical strength, and why is it your favorite? Be sure to share your comments below.


BTW, be sure to follow me on Twitter: @joshonefitness

  • Sincere,

    Very cool video. I remember in my first year of uni here in Toronto our Kinesiology prof showed us this cool picture of an “Old School” gymnasium from the 1900's. Here is a link that shows a similar gym to the one I saw that day in class:

    Notice (and I know you will) there is no equipment! All the training was done with body weight, gymnastics, Indian Clubs, Roman Rings, Parallel Bars, Pummel Horse, Monkey Bars and Ladders- amazing! This to me is what fitness is- athletic free flowing motion!

    As per your question- my favorite “tool” would have to be a skipping rope. I owe much of my foot agility and speed to jumping rope! The great thing about jump rope is that you can always find a way to affect different muscles. No matter how 'strong' you think you are.

    “Float like a butterfly; Sting like a bee!” – Muhammed Ali

    – Thanks again for the great post and reminder of our roots!


  • joshone

    Thanks for sharing, Christopher. I tried clicking on the link you shared, however, it's a no-go, brotha. On another note, I am partial to the jump rope, as well. It is a very important tool in my general training, as well as my martial arts training. It's a great tool for building your aerobic and anaerobic conditioning. Plus, I can take it anywhere. Who knows, I just may have a few with me when we will all meet up in N.J. for Fast track ;- )

  • Sincere,

    Sorry about the link- try this one…I am hoping it works.

    See you in a couple of days my friend!

  • Good video! Plus the info.

  • Good video! Plus the info.