Kettlebell vs. Treadmill


According to a recent research article found at IDEA Health and Fitness on Kettlebell Research: What Science Says in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 26 (5), 1203–07, researchers studied the metabolic demand of kettlebell training to find out whether kettlebells can increase cardiorespiratory fitness. The exercises studied were treadmill running and the two-handed kettlebell swing.

“Participants performed 10 minutes of two-handed KB swings, alternating 35-second swing bouts with 25 seconds of rest [and] a 10-minute treadmill run at a subjective intensity (RPE of 15.3–15.5 on a 6–20 scale).” The table below illustrates the study’s conclusions.


If you notice the total kcal expenditures between both exercises, kettlebell swings shows 375 total kcal and treadmill running shows 512 total kcal.

During the study, the kettlebell swing protocol included 25 second rest periods and the treadmill run was at a consistent pace without rests. While the total kcal expenditure of kettlebell swings in this study was less than treadmill running, it should be noted that kettlebell swings incorporate both cardiovascular and muscular strength and endurance. In addition, kettlebell swings may have exceeded the total kcal expenditures in the long-run had participants not taken rest periods during this study.

While we could go further analyzing the velocity of swings and kettlebell weight as noted in the table above, this study seems to  compare apples to oranges …. a 10 minute un-interrupted run versus kettlebells swings with 25 second rest intervals.

What are your thoughts on this study??


2 thoughts on “Kettlebell vs. Treadmill

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