How to do a Kettlebell Front Squat

What is a Kettlebell Front Squat?

The Kettlebell Front Squat is a powerful lower body movement that can be added to the end of a clean.  The Front Squat requires core stability and hip flexibility but is a great movement for developing strength and power in your legs and core. 

The Kettlebell Front Squat is a full-body exercise with an emphasis on the following muscle groups:

  • Core
  • Back
  • Shoulders
  • Biceps
  • Legs

How to Do a Kettlebell Front Squat (Instructions):

The Clean
Start with the kettlebell about 6-12 inches in front of you. Stand with your feet forward, placed a little more than shoulder width apart. As you inhale, “deadlift down” by bending at your hips, with your knees are slightly bent, until you are in a deadlift position with both hands on the kettlebell.
As you inhale, hike the bell back between your legs as if you were starting a one-hand swing. As you stand up, exhale, and raise the bell up towards your chest, keeping the bell close to your chest. As you reach your chest level, “punch through” the kettlebell handle with your right hand, which will prevent you from slamming your wrist with the kettlebell. “Rack” the kettlebell by resting it on your bent forearm, bicep, and chest. 
“The Squat”
Once racked, inhale and position your feet and legs for a squat. As you exhale, sink down into a squat, so that your bottom sinks to the ground, with a tight core and straight back. Flag your arm that’s not holding the kettlebell out as a way to balance on the way down. At the bottom of the movement, inhale, and return to the standing position. 
Repeat on the other side. 

Trainer Tips for the Kettlebell Front Squat: 

  • Progression (make harder)
    • Use a heavier weight. Scale up in 8kg increments (16kg, 24kg, 32kg, etc…)
    • Clean and squat with two kettlebells, one in each hand.
    • Pause for one or several breaths down at the bottom of the squat. 
    • Increase your repetition count. 
  • Regression (make easier)
    • Do a Goblet Squat
    • Use a lighter weight.
    • Lower your repetition count. 
  • Application:
    • Turn into a Kettlebell Complex. After doing a front squat, do a Kettlebell Press and turn it into a Kettlebell Complex (Clean, Front Squat, Press), as many reps as possible in 5 – 20 minutes. 

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