5×5 Kettlebell Training

5×5 training is a method that has been around for several years.  It happens to be a fantastic way to increase lean muscle mass and strength as it allows for the lifting of heavier weights.  There are various ways to experiment with 5×5 training, so give them all a try.  You can do 5×5, then increase the weight and do 5×5 again, then repeat the process yet again.  You could try doing 2 seconds on the way up, 4 seconds on the way down.  When that becomes easy for you, increase the time to 5 seconds up, 5 seconds down.  Take 90 second breaks between sets, then slash it to sixty seconds when that becomes easy.  Always keep the intensity high.  As you can see, the possibilities are endless.

Regardless of how you choose to utilize 5×5 training, you will be impacting your muscle from different angles which is key to muscle growth.  When you can generally compete 5×5 with no more than 60 second breaks and slow tempos up and down, you will know you are ready to move on to heavier kettlebells. 

There are always ways to adjust exercises to make them harder as your skill level increases.  Instead of a standing military press, try doing a seated press.  When double swings become easy with the kettlebells try doing some double snatches instead.  If lateral raises become too easy, try doing a lateral raise into a press.  Always keep challenging yourself.

Sample 5×5 Kettlebell workout


  • Double Military Press
  • Alternating Bent Over Row


  • Curl and Press
  • Double Snatch


  • Front Squat
  • Double Windmill
  • Shrugs
  • Overhead tricep extensions
  • Double Floor Press

Make sure to do all of these exercises 5×5 with the heaviest weight you can possibly handle.  These workouts can be performed 2-3 times a week depending upon your recovery ability and intensity.  They should be combined with a cardio routine and/or additional weight training to target specific muscle groups.


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