Dumbbells are about the weight. I’m just going right to the meta here. When you work out with dumbells they are the focus. You keep all other parts of your body still and move one hinge.
Kettlebells are about the movement. It’s about you and the weight. It’s about the space you move through. It’s a much more joyful experience.
Dumbbells are anti-rhythm, anti-momentum, anti-flow. If there’s a beauty in them and their associated movements it’s the beauty of rigidity and power. Very mechanical beauty, which is my perferred type of beauty to be honest… nevertheless with kettlebells the beauty is in the movement. You’re working with gravity, exploring it, rather than using it as a wet stone like a dumbbell work out. Kettlebells cause you to strike these poses that feel powerfully beautifully human. Like a Da Vinci drawing.
With dumbells you often keep them as close and symmetrical as possible but with kettlebells you pull your center of gravity away from your body. It trains stability right down to your ankles.
Dumbbells are about thinking how should I move this? While kettlebells inspire the creativity and make you think how could I move this?
So start light to get stretched out and used to the motions with good form then move up, explore all kinds of movement, throw it like a shot put if you’ve got the space, and if you can commit to doing Turkish Get Ups you’re a better spartan than I.
Here’s a kettle bell movement that I dreamed up. It’s an intuitive move but really difficult, I used a 15lb bell for about a year before going on to the 20.