HOW TO: Kettlebell Clean And Press

By Paul Markgraff, Managing Editor, CSCCa Monthly | Twitter: @csccamonthly

There are multiple benefits to working with kettlebells, but three primary benefits include:

  • Student-athletes can remedy imbalances from one side to another.
  • Kettlebells can help student-athletes become more ambidextrous.
  • Kettlebells work the core body in unique ways depending upon the lift.

The Kettlebell Clean And Press utilizes a variety of muscle groups, including erectors, glutes, abdominals, obliques, frontal deltoids, triceps and quadriceps. This lift activates and works an enormous section of the kinetic chain.

Clean And Press Execution

The student-athlete begins by standing with feet shoulder-width apart. The kettlebell is placed between the legs on the floor with the handle running in the “north-south” direction.

Kettlebell Clean And Press

While maintaining a flat back, the athlete bends the hips and knees, grasps the kettlebell with an overhand grip, palm facing outward (See Example 1).

The athlete then power cleans the weight so the kettlebell rolls around the forearm and is laying on the side of the bicep (See Example 2). The athlete should now be standing in an upright position.

The athlete then tightens up his glutes, abs, and obliques while pressing the kettlebell over the shoulder to a locked-out position (See Example 3).

After momentarily locking out the arms, the athlete then lowers the kettlebell in a controlled manner to the shoulder and then back to the floor.

Ethan Reeve, MSCC, Former CSCCa President and Former Assistant Director of Athletics, Sports Performance for Wake Forest, is certified by the Russian Kettlebell Challenge. He knows kettlebells and how to use them.

Reeve says that he likes to incorporate a squat into the Clean And Press.

“Anytime you can incorporate more muscles into play with a wider range of movement, the more athletic it becomes,” says Reeve. “I’m big on doing deep squats below parallel. I find that the kids who squat below parallel, especially deeper squats, they play more, run faster, jump higher and are less injured.”