Bottom-up with a kettlebell, the perfect exercise to create a solid core that works balance and stability


Tamara Villa

What is that ”
bottom up»? Refers to a kettlebell held vertically by the handle with the bottom of the weight facing up and the handle facing down. It might draw some funny looks at the gym you go to because it’s not a topical exercise, but rest assured, no one will be laughing when they see the effect it has on your core.

Bottom-up training with a kettlebell is an activity that requires great
commitment, awareness and connection. While “bottom-up” work may seem very advanced, it can be easily used at the beginning of your workout to build greater focus, teach the concept of tension, and solidify good habits.

How to start bottom-up with kettlebell

The kettlebell bottom-up technique is much easier than it seems, although it does require some dedication. The first thing you have to do is approach the weight, which is on the ground, and in
squat position grasp it placing the palm outwards, inversely to what would be usual.

Next, with the kettlebell firmly grasped and without changing the squat position,
pick her up and take her between your legs, a little behind them, and then stand up straight and bring it to the height of your head, leaving your arm in an L position, as if you were showing biceps. There you should leave it for a couple of seconds.

Next, and now to close the movement,
walk the reverse path. That is, place the kettlebell between your legs, a little behind, and finally leave the weight gently on the ground. Start the exercise again with the other hand with the same steps and do as many repetitions as you want.

Woman with kettlebell/PEXELS

Once you master isometric control of the kettlebell in a standing position, you can add the
walk, press and squat challenge to do the exercise. And he remembers that the benefits of upward movements are in the finer details: give yourself enough time to build strength and skill, and prioritize quality over quantity and load.

The benefits of bottom-up with a kettlebell

A bottom-up kettlebell is inherently unstable, and therein lies the magic: To overcome the challenge, you recruit a
increased number of motor units and muscle fibers. You will feel the work in the lats, the core, the wrist and the forearm during the grip, the pressures and the most dynamic movements.

One of the main reasons why all fitness lovers love to incorporate this work is that it requires
bring the kettlebell from the bottom up. And it is a relentless movement. If you lose focus and control, you may drop the kettlebell or have a hard time doing the exercise.

If you’re struggling to improve your technique for the kettlebell press, this version is great for spending some time oiling up your form. The bottom-up press requires the weight to be held vertically overhead, requiring a vertical forearm and a smooth upward lift, led by a strong, stable shoulder. Because of this, this exercise is one of the easiest ways to
learn pressing mechanics.

Woman with kettlebell/PEXELS

The kettlebell bottom-up position challenges the wrists in a different way than most other movements, which emphasize your
grip strength and the load is below that grip, as is the case with deadlifts, pull-ups, etc. The bottom-up position places the load above the grip, providing a novel challenge for the wrist and forearm muscles.

Learning to increase the tension (or decrease it) and really feel the
core muscle integration using movements like squats, presses and charges can be a challenge for some. The bottom-up position challenge teaches the need to “meet the tension of the task,” which is nothing more than doing it with proper technique.