Kettlebell Clean & Press - Kettlebell Gym

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Kettlebell Clean & Press

One of the most basic yet effective exercises you can do with a kettlebell- the Clean and Press is all about building core strength as part of a greater whole body workout!

I’ve mastered this, take me to the next step.


The clean and press is one of the three fundamental lifts in kettlebell training, it can be performed from dead or from the swing. The clean gets its name because the idea is to lift the weight in the cleanest movement possible, from the ground or base of the swing to the rack position. I don’t teach the clean until I have already taught the rack position in addition to many other more basic lifts such as the deadlift. Please take your time to get your hand position correct in the rack position, your fist should be under your chin, your arm and elbow close to your body. As you increase the weight you are able to clean, you will begin to push your hips under the weight in hip extension when you rack the bell, crunch your abdomen to prevent your back from arching.

Kettlebell Clean

The kettlebell clean is an upward acceleration of weight, not a forward movement, and not jerking the bell off the ground. Use the deadlift pattern that you have developed to make sure you are using the right muscles and float the kettlebell to the rack with your hips. Grip the bell at the base of the lift with your thumb back, as the bell climbs to about waist height, the bell will corkscrew to the outside of your arm. Don’t allow the bell to move to the outside of your body, keep your fist under your chin, ladies may move their hand slightly to the side, and even shift your hip slightly to the side under the bell.

At first, you may notice the bell bangs your wrist as you develop proper technique, wearing some sweat bands on your wrist can help this. Refer to my videos for a visual guide on this lift, it isn’t about how much muscle you have, but how well you use it. You will get much better with practice.

Kettlebell Press

From the rack position, we will learn three different ways to get the bell overhead, the press, push press, and the jerk. For now, let’s just focus on the press. From the rack position, you will rotate your palm forward as you use a J pattern to the outside of your body to press the bell overhead. Sink your shoulder down and back, engage your lat and don’t allow your back to arch. Push the bell to its neutral gravity line and lock your elbow. Make sure your shoulder is still sunk down and back, don’t try to press the weight by shrugging your shoulder, keep your fist straight. After lock out at neutral, pull the weight back to the rack position. Rotate your hand inward on the way down just as you rotated it outward on the way up, the J pattern isn’t as obvious coming down, the motion can be more direct from top to bottom. Putting the bell down from the rack position is a reversal of the clean, sitting back into the hips, allowing them to decelerate the force.