12 Best Kettlebell HIIT Workouts and Routines with PDF

High-intensity Interval training (HIIT) involves performing an exercise at a maximum heart rate followed by a short recovery period. It is a time-efficient and effective training approach to enhance cardiovascular fitness, weight loss, and body composition.

In this article, I’ll show you how you can use kettlebells to perform HIIT and shape your physique.

The kettlebell HIIT workout helps torch serious calories, facilitate fat loss, build lean mass, and elevate overall fitness.

Can You Do High-Intensity Interval Training with Kettlebells?

Kettlebell HIIT Workouts

Yes, you can easily perform high-intensity exercises with kettlebells, Kettlebells are comfortable to grip, easy to swing and lift, provide a complete range of motion, and allow you to perform numerous exercises at a fast pace.

For example, a kettlebell snatch is an explosive exercise that helps improve aerobic capacity and cardiovascular conditioning in females and males.1Falatic JA, Plato PA, Holder C, Finch D, Han K, Cisar CJ. Effects of Kettlebell Training on Aerobic Capacity. J Strength Cond Res. 2015 Jul;29(7):1943-7. DOI: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000000845. PMID: 26102260, 2 Hulsey CR, Soto DT, Koch AJ, Mayhew JL. Comparison of kettlebell swings and treadmill running at an equivalent rating of perceived exertion values. J Strength Cond Res. 2012 May;26(5):1203-7. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3182510629. PMID: 22395274.

Like a KB snatch, you can do various other high-intensity kettlebell exercises to get strong, lean, and fast.

12 Best Kettlebell HIIT Workouts to Scale Up Your Fitness

  1. Kettlebell Swings
  2. Clean And Press
  3. Man Maker
  4. Crunches
  5. Squat to Press
  6. Kettlebell Snatch
  7. Squat Jump
  8. Lunge with Rotation
  9. Kneeling Low to High Chop
  10. Gorilla Row
  11. Russian Step-ups
  12. Single Arm Push Jerk

If you want more exercises, I’ve got an ultimate list for you; I recommend you explore that and pick as many exercises as you like.

1. Kettlebell Swing

The kettlebell swing bolsters the hamstring, glutes, shoulders, core, hamstring, lower back, shoulder, and quads and helps develop strength and athleticism.

Studies show it also annihilates decent calories in a short time and increases strength, power, and overall performance.3 Lake JP, Lauder MA. Kettlebell swing training improves maximal and explosive strength. J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Aug;26(8):2228-33. DOI: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31825c2c9b. PMID: 22580981.

Steps to Perform a Kettlebell Swing

  1. Grab a kettlebell and stand upright with your feet in the shoulder-width stance and toes pointing slightly out.
  2. Keep your arms straight between your legs, brace your core, and hinge forward at your hips while swinging the bell behind.
  3. Driving through your heels, swing the bell in front of you as far as possible until your hips are entirely straight and your torso is leaning backward.
  4. Lower the kettlebell to the starting position to complete your first rep.
  5. Keep your arms straight throughout the movement.

10-Minute Kettlebell Swing HIIT Workout

  • 20 Dual Arm Russian Kettlebell Swings, 30-second rest
  • 20 Dual Arm American Kettlebell Swings, 30-second rest
  • 20 Single Arm Russian KB Swings, 10 per arm, 30-second rest
  • 20 Single Arm American KB Swings, 10 per arm, 30-second rest
  • 20 Arm Changing KB Swings, 10 per hand, 30-second rest
  • Repeat this one more time to complete 10 minutes.

2. KB Clean And Press

The clean and press is a full-body exercise that combines two movements: clean and press.

Clean involves lifting the kettlebell from your thigh to shoulder, while pressing involves pushing the weight over the head.

The combination of clean & press engages multiple muscles throughout the body and helps build strength, endurance, and power.

Steps to Perform a Clean and Press

  1. Place a kettlebell on the floor and stand against it in a shoulder-width stance.
  2. Lean forward and grab the bell with a straight arm.
  3. Driving your hips forward, swing the bell up in front of the shoulder, close to the body.
  4. Press the weight overhead until your elbow is entirely extended.
  5. Return to the start. That’s one rep.

10-Minute Kettlebell Clean and Press Interval Training

  • 20 One-arm Clean, 10 reps per side, 30-second rest
  • 20 One-arm Press,10 reps per side, 30-second rest
  • 10 Clean and Press, 30-second
  • Aim for three to four rounds.

3. Kettlebell Man Maker

The Manmaker is an advanced exercise that involves push-ups, renegade rows, clean, and thruster, making it an excellent compound movement.

It simultaneously works multiple muscles, such as the chest, back, and core, and helps improve total-body muscular endurance and aestheticism.

Steps to Perform a Man Maker

  1. Grab one KB in each hand and get into a high plank position.
  2. Perform one pushup and row the bell on your right side.
  3. Do another pushup and row the bell to your left side.
  4. Jump your feet forward and land into a low squat position.
  5. Explosively stand up from the squat while raising the kettlebells to shoulder level.
  6. In a continuous motion, press the dumbbells overhead until your arms are fully extended.
  7. Keep your core tight and back straight during the entire movement.

10-Minute High-Intensity Man Maker Workout

  • Perform 5 reps at a moderate pace, followed by a 30-second rest.
  • Do as many rounds as possible in ten minutes.

4. Kettlebell Crunches

Kettlebell Crunches

Crunches help bolster abdominal muscles and build a firm core. They also annihilate many calories and help build abs and a flat stomach.

Steps to Perform KB Crunch

  • Holding a kettlebell, lie on the floor with your knees bent in front of you, feet properly on the ground.
  • Keep the bell over your chest with straight arms.
  • Lift your upper back off the floor and bring your head toward your knees until you feel a good contraction in your abs.
  • Pause and then uncurl your torso to return to the start. That’s one rep.

10-Minute KB Crunches HIIT

  • 5 crunches, 15-second rest
  • 6 Crunches, 15-second rest
  • 7 Crunches, 15-second rest
  • 8 Crunches, 15-second rest
  • 9 Crunches, 15-second rest
  • 10 Crunches, 15-second rest
  • Perform two rounds.

5. Front Squat to Press

kettlebell hiit exercises

The front squat to overhead press is a multi-movement exercise that fortifies muscles from the upper to the lower body and helps enhance endurance, mobility, and strength.

Steps to Perform Squat to Press

  1. Holding one kettlebell in each hand, stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart and toes pointing slightly out. Bend your elbows so the kettlebell rests on your upper arm. That’s the start.
  2. Brace your core, inhale, and perform a squat.
  3. Once you return from the squat, press the weight up until your arms are extended overhead.
  4. Return the bells to the start. That’s your one rep.

10-Minute KB Squat to Press Workout

  • Perform 5 reps at a moderate pace, followed by a 30-second rest.
  • Repeat as many times as possible in ten minutes.

6. Kettlebell Snatch

The snatch is an explosive and intense movement that engages muscles throughout the body. It is fast and great for burning serious calories quickly.

Steps to Perform Squat to Press

  1. Standing in the shoulder-with stance, place a kettlebell between your legs.
  2. Bend forward and grasp the KB with your right hand.
  3. Driving through your feet, extend your hips and knees, and explosively swing the bell overhead.
  4. Lower the kettlebell between your legs by bending your hips.
  5. Do an equal number of reps on each side.

10-Minute Kettlebell Swing HIIT Workout

  • 10 Snatches with right arm, 15-second rest
  • 10 Snatches with left arm, 15-second rest
  • Perform as many rounds as possible.

7. Kettlebell Squat Jump

The KB squat jump involves a standard squat followed by an explosive jump. It is an excellent exercise for strengthening and toning lower body muscles, building athletic fitness, and enhancing fat loss.

Steps to Perform a Squat Jump

  • Grab a kettlebell with your hands, stand in the hip-width stance, and hold it between your legs.
  • Perform a squat and then jump in the air as high as possible.
  • Then, land into a squat position and repeat for the suggested reps or time.

10-Minute Squat Jump HIIT Workout

  • 5 reps, 30-second rest
  • 6 reps, 30-second rest
  • 7 reps, 30-second rest
  • 8 reps, 30-second rest
  • 9 reps, 30-second rest
  • 10 reps, 30-second rest

8. Goblet Lunge with Rotation

The lunge plus rotation is a total-body exercise that primarily works on the legs and abs. It also improves hip mobility, makes the body flexible, and enhances overall balance.

Steps to Perform a Lunge with Rotation

  1. Grab a kettlebell, hold it against your chest, and stand in a hip-width stance.
  2. Bring your right foot forward and perform a lunge, then twist your torso to the left.
  3. Now, step forward with your left foot, perform a lunge on the opposite side, then twist your torso to the right. That’s one rep.

10-Minute Kettlebell Lunge with Rotation Workout

  • Perform 10 reps at a moderate pace, followed by a 30-second rest.
  • Repeat as many times as possible in ten minutes.

9. Kneeling Low to High Chop

The kneeling high to low chop is a core-building exercise that particularly bolsters the external and internal obliques, improves the appearance of your abs, and makes your torso flexible.

Like the other exercises I’ve mentioned above, it can be done at a fast pace to destroy many calories in a short time.

Steps to Perform a Low to High Chop

  1. Grab a kettlebell and sit on your right knee with your left foot on the ground.
  2. Keep the kettlebell close to the right side of the hip. That’s the start.
  3. With your arms straight, raise weight across your body from your hip to the opposite shoulder.
  4. Pause for a moment, feel the work in your abs, then return to the start. That’s one rep.

10-Minute HIIT Kettlebell Oblique Workout

  • 10 reps on the right side, 15-second rest
  • 10 reps on the left side, 15-second rest
  • Repeat for as many rounds as possible.

10. Kettlebell Gorilla Row

The KB gorilla row is an excellent upper-body workout that helps build endurance and muscle mass. It engages the back muscles, such as the latissimus dorsi (lats) and trapezius primarily.

Steps to Perform a Gorilla Row

  1. Grab one kettlebell in each hand and stand in a slightly wider than shoulder-width stance.
  2. Hinge forward at your hips until your chest is parallel to the floor. Keep your arms straight below your shoulders so the kettlebells stay on the ground.
  3. Row the bells alternatively until your lats are fully contracted.

10-Minute HIIT Kettlebell Back Workout

  • 10 reps on the right side, 15-second rest
  • 10 reps on the left side, 15-second rest
  • Aim for a maximum number of rounds of 10 minutes.

11. Russian Step-up

The step-up is a super effective exercise that involves stepping up on the box or bench and lifting your knee toward your chest.

This multi-movement exercise hammers quads, hamstrings, glutes, and abdominals and enhances strength and mobility.

Steps to Perform a Russian Step-up

  1. Grab a kettlebell in your left hand, hold it close to your shoulder with your elbow bent, and stand in front of the box or bench.
  2. Step your left foot on the box, lift your right foot off the floor, and bring it toward your chest.
  3. Do it for the suggested reps and repeat on the opposite side.

10-Minute Russian Step-up Workout

  • 10 reps on the right leg, 15-second rest
  • 10 reps on the left leg, 15-second rest
  • 10 reps alternating step-ups, 30-second.
  • Perform as many rounds as possible in ten minutes.

12. Single Arm Kettlebell Push Jerk

The KB push jerk is a highly intense fat-burning exercise that kindles calories and improves muscular endurance, balance, and overall performance.

Incorporating it into your interval training will surely help you improve your fitness and body composition.

Steps to Perform a Push Jerk

  1. Grab a kettlebell in your right hand and pull it toward your shoulder so it rests on the upper arm. Make sure your palm is facing forward.
  2. Bend your knees to dip your body, and driving through your heels, explosively push the weight overhead until your arms are entirely straight.
  3. Perform an equal number of sets and reps on each side.

10-Minute Push Jerk HIIT Workout

  • 10 reps with right arm, 15-second rest
  • 10 reps with left arm, 15-second rest
  • Aim for a maximum number of rounds of 10 minutes.

The Best Kettlebell HIIT Workout Plan Samples

You’ve seen all the exercises, now let’s see how you can use them to create an effective high-intensity training routine. Here are the three best examples for every fitness level:

15-Minute High-Intensity Kettlebell Workout to Get Going

This 15-minute workout involves performing three rounds, five minutes of each. Doing this in the morning will keep you active throughout the day and increase your fitness for more intense workouts.

  • Interval time between exercises: 15-second
  • Rest between rounds: 30-second
  • Intensity: 75-90% of your maximum heart rate (MHR)
  • Estimated calories burned: 130-160
Round 1Round 2Round 3
20 Russian KB Swing10 Clean and PressAmerican KB Swing
10 Kettlebell Clean20 Arm Changing KB SwingSquat Jump
10 KB Crunches20 Reverse Lunges (10/leg)KB Thruster
10 Squat to Press20 Low to High Chop (10/side)Plank Drag

20-Minute HIIT Kettlebell Workout to Bolster Entire Body and Improve Shape

This 20-minute high-intensity KB swing workout is great for everyone who wants to torch maximum calories while improving their strength, speed, and muscularity.

  • Interval time: 20-30 seconds
  • Suggested reps: 8-12
  • Intensity: 75-90% of your MHR
  • Goal: Build Strength, Endurance, and Speed
  • Expected calories burned: 180-220
Round 1Round 2
Kettlebell SwingsKB Squat Jump
Squat to Press Man Maker
Gorilla RowCrunches
Clean and PressKettlebell Thruster
Floor PressKettlebell Snatch
One-Arm Push JerkRussian Twist

30-Minute Kettlebell Interval Training to Get Lean and Fast

  • Interval time: 30-45 seconds
  • Suggested reps: 8-12
  • Intensity: 75-90% of your MHR
  • Goal: Speed up Fat Loss, Build Muscle, and Ramp up Your Fitness Level
  • Expected calories burned: 320-400

Round 1

  • Kettlebell Swings
  • Squat to Overhead Press
  • Kettlebell Turkish Get-Up
  • Kettlebell Crunches
  • Kettlebell Snatch
  • Kettlebell Gorilla Row

Round 2

  • Kettlebell Squat Jump
  • Kettlebell Windmill
  • Kettlebell Clean And Press
  • Goblet Lunge with Rotation
  • Kettlebell Thruster

Round 3

  • Single Arm Push Jerk
  • Glute Bridge
  • KB Clean
  • Man Maker
  • Low to High Chop

Download The HIIT Kettlebell Workout Program PDF

How Often Should You Perform Kettlebell HIIT?

Three to six days a week, depending on your goal, fitness level, and daily workout session duration. For example, if you train for only 10 to 15 minutes a day, you can do interval training six times a week, and if you do intense exercises for 20 to 30 minutes a day, you can train four to five times a week.

How Heavy Should You Use Kettlebells for HIIT?

You can use as heavy kettlebells as possible to perform fast-paced exercises as long as you maintain your intensity, form, and balance. The lighter the kettlebell you carry, the faster you can perform exercises.

Can HIIT Kettlebell Workout Build Muscle?

Yes, high-intensity kettlebell training helps bolster muscular strength and build fat-free mass. However, it is not as effective as traditional muscle-building gym workouts. So, if you want to get big, I recommend checking out the bodybuilding training splits, which I’ve covered in other blogs.

Does Kettlebell HIIT Increase Weight Loss?

Yes, a HIIT kettlebell workout helps burn fat more efficiently than traditional cardio. High-intensity training ignites calories not only when you exercise but even after hours.4 Boutcher SH. High-intensity intermittent exercise and fat loss. J Obes. 2011;2011:868305. doi: 10.1155/2011/868305. Epub 2010 Nov 24. PMID: 21113312; PMCID: PMC2991639, 5 Türk Y, Theel W, Kasteleyn MJ, et al. High-intensity training in obesity: a Meta-analysis. Obes Sci Pract. 2017;3(3):258-271. Published 2017 May 29. doi:10.1002/osp4.109,

Besides higher calorie burning, KB high-intensity training builds lean mass, strengthens bones and joints, and helps improve body composition.

However, you must equally focus on your nutrition because it’s impossible to lose weight when you consume more calories than your body burns throughout the day.

Plus, I highly recommend people consult a physician for obesity because it’s not possible for me to tell you whether this program will work for you or not.

References

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Author
Murshid Akram
I'm an online personal trainer, fitness blogger, and fitness enthusiast. I love researching and writing about exercise and nutrition. I share science-based, practical, and logical information that can help you achieve your desired fitness goal.
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