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If you’re looking for one of the most efficient tools to help you get into better shape this year, look no further than the simple kettlebell.  A staple for competitive athletes for several centuries, these powerful cannonball shaped weights with their oversized grips work the body in ways that traditional weight training and cardio simply cannot.

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Because of their ability to pair the best of both worlds of aerobic and anaerobic conditioning, they can be a huge timesaver as it’s like you’re getting two workouts at the same time.  This is perfect for those with minimal time, minimal space and not a lot of equipment.  One single kettlebell can be used to work the entire body.

If you’re looking for a kettlebell workout to flatten the stomach or perhaps a kettlebell ab and arm workout, or any combination of body parts, look no further than this effective, simple tool.  In this blog we will be not only looking at kettlebell ab workouts, featuring exercises like kettlebell swings for abs, but you can be sure you will be working tons of other muscle groups while you’re working these.  Heck you may see some exercises for abs and bum, too!

Get the Kettlebell Flow from Aaron Montgomery and StrongAndFit.com!

standing kettlebell ab workout

Let’s look at some of the best kettlebell for abs exercises you can pick from and create creative ab workouts that can be done everyday.  These are all done from a standing position and will have you building a stronger core and abs without crunches, sit ups or planks.


Kettlebell Around the Worlds on the surface can seem relatively easy.  The goal is to hold the kettlebell by the grip and with feet shoulder width or a little wider apart and pass the kettlebell from one hand to the other in front of your body and then pass the kettlebell to the opposing hand behind your back.  

As you build momentum and rhythm you will feel your bodyweight shifting from side to side as you pass the kettlebell between hands.  This exercise can serve as a great warmup that’s not too taxing, but can also give your core a decent workout as you do your best to stabilize and not overly shift from side to side.

This exercise dramatically works your core through stabilization while also developing your shoulder and upper body strength and improving your gripping ability.


The Kettlebell Swing is one of the most fundamental exercises and should form the foundation of your kettlebell training.  There are few exercises that are more metabolically efficient in terms of the muscles they work, the cardiovascular stress they create and the mobility and flexibility they encourage.

With feet placed shoulder width apart and the kettlebell between one’s feet you will bend down to pick it up with both hands on the grip.  Single arm versions can be incorporated for variety as well.  As you inhale, keeping the arms straight you will raise the kettlebell to shoulder level and begin the exhale, letting the kettlebell swing back down between the legs without bending forward at the back.  Essentially the straightened back and hips form a hinge that opens and closes in rhythmic fashion.

Kettlebell swings work the entire body and can be an incredible calorie burner.  Some experts believe that a minute of well-performed kettlebell swings can burn more calories than running, which should be great news for those who don’t enjoy running.


With the handle of the kettlebell pointed towards you, you will grasp the kettlebell on either side with your hands and hold it at shoulder level with your elbows relatively close to your body.

To perform the movement you will crunch towards the floor as you bring one knee up to meet the kettlebell and then return to the standing position.  In each repetition you will switch knees, alternating them back and forth.


Kettlebell side bends involve holding a single kettlebell in one of your hands and standing up straight as you hold it.  To perform the movement you will slowly bend at the waist, allowing the kettlebell to move down your hip and leg as far as you are able.  You will come back upright, reversing the movement to finish the rep.  After a specific number of reps of your choosing you will switch hands and repeat the exercise on the other side.

Kettlebells are not just one of the easiest fitness tools to incorporate into your workouts, but they also afford some of the most flexibility in terms of how you use them.  There are endless variations of how you can use these tools.

For instance, perhaps on one day, you simply focus on kettlebell swings for your abs workout.  So you grab a moderately heavy kettlebell and get a timer ready and set it for 60 seconds.  During that 60 seconds, you try to perform as many well-executed kettlebell swings as you can.  After that first minute you can incorporate a rest period of approximately a minute (less if you want to tax the cardiovascular and more if you are using a heavier weight).  You can repeat that process for anywhere from 3-10 times or as many times as you want, as your fitness builds.

Get the Kettlebell Flow from Aaron Montgomery and StrongAndFit.com!

standing ab exercises with kettlebell

Or you can take the exercises listed above and you can perform 10-20 repetitions of each exercise and without rest, move to the next exercise until you move through the entire group of exercises you decided to focus on.  At the end of this circuit, you can incorporate a rest period and repeat or perhaps, you want to really burn out your lungs, you may want to perform the exercises on a repeating loop for a specific overall period of time.

You can even go as far as to do a variety of different style kettlebell workouts throughout the week to get the most bang for your buck, burn the most fat and get those abs to the surface faster than ever!  Monday could be your heavier, slower workout with more rest designed to focus on the muscles.  As the week wears on, Wednesday might be dedicated to circuits and then perhaps the last workout of the week on Friday could be focused solely on high reps of kettlebell swings to really blow out the cardiovascular system.

Experiment and have fun with these effective and standing kettlebell workouts!

Did you find the blog beneficial? If so, consider exploring our other guides.