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Active Voice: Can Kettlebells Do It All?

from By John P. Porcari, Ph.D., FACSM

Active Voice is a column by experts in science, medicine and allied health. The viewpoints expressed do not necessarily reflect positions or policies of ACSM.

John P. Porcari, Ph.D., FACSM, is Professor and Director of the Clinical Exercise Physiology Program in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. His research centers on assessing new exercise equipment for physical training applications with cardiac patients. He presented research related to this commentary at ACSM’s Annual Meeting and World Congress on Exercise is Medicine™, held in Baltimore in June 2010.


To me, the mention of kettlebell training evokes the vision a singlet-clad, mustachioed weightlifter in a dark gymnasium extending a weight overhead. That vision may not be that far-fetched, as kettlebells are thought to have originated in Russia during the early 1700s. In recent years, they have grown in popularity as part of individual and group fitness classes. more


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