Kettlebell Swing Corrections

Regress to Progress

The kettlebell swing is simple but not easy. It requires timing, strength, stability, and persistence. Groove the pattern. There are a lot of poor examples of swings out there. Take a look at this Jillian Michaels video. There is no hinge, the kettlebell handle is passing below the knees on the hike phase, and their not maintaining a neutral spine.

Here are three drills you can practice to correct your kettlebell swing and pattern perfect form. All three of these drills will be centered around the hardstyle plank. We will start from the ground up and progress through different postures.

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The Hardstyle Plank

Joe DeLeo performs the hardstyle plank.

The hardstyle plank.

Use this drill to learn total body tension

At the top of the kettlebell swing your body forms a plum line from your ankle through your ear.  Your body is filled with tension from the shoulders down as the kettlebell comes perpendicular to your chest (the arms remain relaxed). This posture is the same as if you were in a plank position!

You must learn to get tight. The glutes, abs, lats, and quads are all contracted and tensed at the top of the swing. To simplify this concept we remove the kettlebell and go back to the ground level.

Kneeling Plank

Tall-Kneeling Plank with Kettlebell behind you.

Tall-Kneeling Plank with kettlebell behind.

Tall-Kneeling Plank with Kettlebell in front.

Tall-Kneeling Plank with kettlebell in front.









Use this drill if you finish your swing and your butt is sticking out behind you.

In this drill make sure you take the time to get the set up correct. This kettlebell swing correction will force you to create the proper alignment and posture necessary while firing all of the necessary muscles that will be used in the swing.

Back to the Wall Plank

Use this drill if you lean back at the top of the swing.

Deadlift a kettlebell. Step back to a wall and make sure head, shoulders, glutes, and heels are in contact with the wall.

  • Push into the floor with your feet. Root down into the ground.
  • Squeeze your glutes. Crush a walnut with your butt cheeks.
  • Tense your abs. Brace for a punch
  • Fire your lats. Squeeze an orange under your armpit. Make orange juice!
  • Incorporate power breathing


These 3 drills are great kettlebell swing corrections. Identify what area of your swing you need to work on and then incorporate the appropriate drill. Whether it is learning to create total body tension at the top of the swing or proper posture and alignment through your pelvis or shoulders you’re covered with all three of these regressions.



  1. Jones, Brett. Cook, Gray. Kettlebells from the Center: Dynami. Functional Movement Systems. 2010. Print.
  2. Cook, Gray. John, Dan. Burton, Lee. Essentials of Coaching and Training Functional Continuums. 2014. DVD.