Kettlebell Workouts Versus Walking

Walking is a very interesting type of activity. It’s light enough that it can be considered low-impact, but it puts enough stress on the bones to be considered load-bearing. The latter as you know, is very important for osteoporosis prevention.

Low Impact

When you compare walking to kettlebell workouts, one of the main commonalities is they are both low-impact. That’s because, with the exception of a few drills, your feet always remain in contact with the ground. Because of this, you might even say kettlebells cause LESS impact than walking.

Calorie Burning

From a caloric standpoint, walking doesn’t even come close. That’s not to say it can’t be utilized for weight loss, but you would need to really alter the conditions. For example, you can walk up steep hills, increase your pace, walk backwards or sideways, or walk backwards or sideways up hill. You may look a little weird in doing these variants, but don’t ever worry about what other people say or think.

Kettlebell workouts, on the other hand, are guaranteed to give you a high caloric burn, regardless of the exercise you do. This is because they involve so many large muscle groups working at the same time.

Muscles Worked

The specific muscle recruitment varies drastically between these two exercise forms as well. Walking is predominately a lower-body driven movement, which targets the quads, glutes, calves, hamstrings and hip flexors. Due to its limited amount of resistance, it will not cause you to gain much size or strength. It is predominately a form of light cardio.

Kettlebell exercises like squats, deadlifts, lunges and swings, on the other hand, target the same muscles, but there is a heavy load to deal with. This not only causes a higher caloric expenditure, but it also lends handy to building mass, power and strength.

As an added benefit, you have a whole arsenal of upper body exercises with kettlebells, where you don’t with walking. Cleans, presses, snatches, Turkish get-ups, striker’s floor presses and high pulls work all the muscles from the waist up. You can’t say the same for walking.

The variety of movements is also endless with kettlebells. You can combine three or more exercises together to work your entire body in one wholesome workout. The same can’t be said with walking. In this case you will get the advantage of burning calories and building lean muscle mass at the same time.

Convenience

Another resemblance between the two is that they are easy to execute into a workout. All you need for walking is a street, sidewalk or path. You can even go in inclement weather, provided you dress properly. Your other option is to walk on a treadmill, which requires a gym membership or you need to get one for home.

Kettlebells are just as convenient as you can use them at home, a gym or outside. Parks make good locations or you can simply work out in your back yard.

In some cases, you can pair kettlebells together with walking in a workout. If you are doing a top-of-the-minute drill where you perform 10 snatches at the top of each minute for 10 minutes, you can walk between sets to stay loose and reduce lactic acid buildup.

With some exercises, you can actually walk while holding a kettlebell. This would be the case with rack carries, overhead walk arounds and lateral walks.

Bottom Line

In the end, it always boils down to your personal interests and likes. If you are not into intense exercise, then stick to walking.

However, if you are looking to lose weight and get lean and ripped as fast as possible, go with kettlebells. Just remember to always get good instruction first and learn the proper form and technique for doing Kettlebell training, this is of utmost importance to avoid injury!