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How are kettlebell workouts useful to stuntmen?

Top 5 Kettlebell Exercises for Stuntmen

March 21, 2014
Updated April 12, 2018

Kettlebell workouts are being used for agility, strength, and conditioning by a multitude of elite athletes, fitness enthusiasts, and Olympic lifters. Another group of individuals that must excel in all three of those categories are Stunt Professionals. People in the Stunt Industry put their bodies through grueling treatment day in and day out and therefore must be in incredible shape and ready for nearly any type of environment. Whether it’s jumping off tall buildings, doing a 20-minute fight sequence, running through a jungle on fire, or simply jumping through a glass window, their bodies have to be ready for anything.

Through years of performing stunts, and now teaching others my stunt techniques, I have found that you can really improve your strength, agility, and endurance through kettlebell training. Just adding the kettlebell to familiar bodyweight exercises or holding one during simple stunts, this tool will improve your grip and overall body dynamics.

I have put together a few exercises utilized in our Stunt Professional training involving kettlebells. They can be added as a supplement to any workout program, or you can simply follow the workout listed below. Some of the movements might be more advanced, so make sure that you try them as bodyweight exercises before adding in a kettlebell.

#1 Kettlebell Spider Crawls

Stuntman Kettlebell Workout: Spider CrawlsStart off in a high plank position holding yourself up with 2 Kettlebells. Lower your body as far as you can to the ground and spider crawl forward 5 paces (Bring opposite arm and leg forward to mimic spiderman crawling), once you go 5 paces, do the same movement going backwards.

#2 Kettlebell Body Twists to Side Rolls

Stuntman Kettlebell Workout: Kettlebell Body Twists to Side RollsStart off in a high plank holding yourself up with one Kettlebell. Lower your body down and roll to your right side, keeping your body straight. After a full side roll push yourself back up using the Kettlebell and do the same movement now going to the left. To up the intensity, try this with 2 Kettlebells and go into a full side plank after the roll.

#3 Kettlebell Shoulder Rolls

Stuntman Kettlebell Workout: Kettlebell Shoulder RollStart with the Kettlebell in goblet position closest to your chest. Tuck your chin and lower your body down and rotate forward into a shoulder or forward roll. Come back up all the way to standing turn around and perform the same movement. Make sure you rotate your body and move with a good amount of momentum to carry yourself through the roll and back to standing.

#4 Kettlebell Front/Back Rolls

Stuntman Kettlebell Workout: Kettlebell Front RollsStart with the Kettlebell in goblet position closest to your chest while standing. Tuck your chin, lower your body down and rotate your body backwards, making sure to rotate your head so you can get clearance for your shoulder. Come back up all the way to standing, rotate and perform the same movement. Make sure you rotate your body and move with a good amount of momentum to carry yourself through the roll and back to standing. You can start with a small hop to help gain that momentum to drive yourself backward into the roll.

#5 Kettlebell Frog Jumps

Stuntman Kettlebell Workout: Kettlebell Frog JumpsStart out with the Kettlebell in goblet position and go into a deep squat. Jump as high as you can while pressing up the Kettlebell into the air, bring the Kettlebell back down to goblet position while descending from the jump, and land back in a deep squat and continue. For a more explosive workout instead of squat jumps, do Frog jumps.

Stunt Kettlebell Mini-Circuit

Trying doing this mini-circuit three times through. Once you are confident with it, try upping the intensity by adding more reps to each set and a heavier kettlebell. I suggest starting with a lower kettlebell weight to start off with the more advanced movements. Rest 30-60 seconds between eat set, no rest in between exercises.

A1: Kettlebell Frog Jumps – 3 x 8
A2: Kettlebell Spider Crawls – 3 x 5 ES
A3: Kettlebell Shoulder Rolls – 3 x 6
A4: Kettlebell Back Rolls – 3 x 6
A5: Kettlebell Body Twists to Side Roll – 3 x 10

Stuntman Bodyweight Workout Video

Anthony Eisenhower has over 20 years of experience studying, practicing and teaching martial arts including Muay Thai, Tae Kwon Do, Coju-jitsu, Capoeira, Kenpo Karate, Gung Fu, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Pankration. Anthony holds Blackbelts in Coju-jitsu, Tae Kwon Do as well as Muay Thai Level 2 Khru. Anthony studied gymnastics at L.A. Valley College and dance at Loyola Marymount University with the purpose of increasing flexibility and endurance for competition. He competed in full contact Kickboxing, Pankration and MMA. Anthony also performs stunt and fight choreography for music videos, commercials and various film and television projects; past projects include Alias, Birds of Prey, Dark Angel and Power Rangers in Space. Anthony is also the creator of the Brood 9 Stunt System, which is one of the few Stunt Certification classes taught for Physical stunt work. He has a DVD with the basics of this program through My Mad Methods Productions, and is a contributor to the My Mad Methods Magazine as well as other Fitness and MMA forums.
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