2014 Kettlebell Holiday Shopping Guide

The girevik in your life will be thrilled to find these gifts under the tree or in the stocking.

One of the biggest benefits of the kettlebell is its simplicity. You can just throw it in the car and use it anywhere. So for this year’s holiday wish list, I’ve picked out some kettlebells and a few nice, but not absolutely necessary accessory items.

Here are my gift recommendations for the girevik in your life:

Demon Bells Performance Line

Price: $99.00

Where to Get It: Demon Bells

Description: Many people have seen Demon Bell’s Warrior Line of kettlebells. However, they also make a great Performance line of cast iron kettlebells. These kettlebells are made in the United States and do not have seams on the handles. They have grooves on the top to fit your arms for cleans and for presses.

Rogue Monster Bells

Price: From $22.00 to $223.00

Where to Get It: Rogue Fitness

Description: These kettlebells are well made with no seams in the handles. The coating is durable, but some people might call it aggressive as it is a little rougher than other kettlebells. I like how the grip feels, and these hold chalk well if you do feel they are too rough. Rogue offers heavier kettlebells up to a 203lb size, which are great for heavy two-handed swings or Turkish get ups.

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Spud, Inc. Dip Belt

Price: $47.00

Where to Get It: Amazon

Description: I happened to stumble upon the Spud dip belt a few years ago for use doing weighted pull ups. This belt is a bit dirty now, but it still is holding up like it is brand new. It is comfortable and holds plates and heavy kettlebells with ease. This belt inspires confidence that it won’t break no matter what the load.

Coach’s Eye

Price: $4.99

Where to Get It: Coach’s Eye

Description: A great app to show athletes their movements. One of the biggest benefits is that it allows you to create a super slow-motion video. It also allows for drawing on the image to show how to change movement. It is a good app for long-distance coaching, as it can be easily uploaded, annotated by the coach, and then sent back to the athlete. It is a good way to give feedback to athletes (and yourself) on how to do movement.

Rogue Gymnastics V2 Grips

Price: $21.95

Where to Get It: Rogue Fitness

Description: These are great for preventing callouses from ripping during kettlebell snatches and cleans. Sure you can simply make something similar out of tape, but these are handy to have around.

KettleGuard Reinforced Wrist Wraps

Price: $24.95

Where to Get It: KettleGuard

Description: These were designed by a competitive kettlebell Master of Sports. They protect the wrist during snatches. I don’t use wrist protection, but if I were to, these are the best on the market.

Bosco Bell or Atomic Athletic’s Old-Time Strongman Dumbell

Price: $275.00 (Bosco Bell) to $329.00 (Atomic Bell)

Where to Get It: Bosco Bell or Atomic Athletics

Description: These are more of a novelty and something I would like to have. The thick grip might be useful for building grip strength. I recently was able to play around with these at Dave Whitley’s Nashville Kettlebell and they were quite useful (i.e., cool looking) for doing the bent press.

Simple and Sinister by Pavel

Price: $6.95 (audio) to $19.95 (paperback)

Where to Get It: StrongFirst

Description: A great guide to kettlebells for the beginner to the advanced athlete. Many people start thinking this is a “simple” program and realize just how “sinister” and effective it is. As athletes, we often reach for more and more variety, but this book does away with all the fluff to provide a simple and effective strength and conditioning program. The audio version is read by Pavel, and if you haven’t heard him speak, it is definitely worth checking out.

Taming the Bent Press by Dave Whitley

Price: $9.99 (ebook) to $25.00 (paperback)

Where to Get It: Lulu

Description: The bent press is an often misunderstood lift that was performed by many old-time strongmen. But it is a great exercise that helps with mobility and building core and shoulder stability. I will write a more formal review of this book soon, but I was surprised how much this lift helped me in other areas. Plus, it was pretty fun to be able to put heavier loads overhead.

Easy Strength by Pavel

Price: $8.49

Where to Get It: Amazon

There are many good strength training books available. However, this is the one I recommend most often as it simplifies many of the ideas for the beginner to advanced athlete. The Easy Strength forty-day protocol seems to work well for all the athletes I know who have tried it. As with Simple and Sinister, sometimes keeping things to the basics is what works the best. We may want variety, but that might not be good for us.

RELATED: When Too Much Choice Is Bad for Your Training

Olympic Weightlifting: Cues & Corrections by Daniel Camargo

Price: $24.99

Where to Get It: Amazon

Danny Carmago is a great Olympic lifting coach with a broad background in the sport. I would add to my list taking another seminar from him, as well. I have not read his book, so I am adding it to my wish list. However, if it is anything like his teaching, it will be quite amazing.

Treadall Gym Flooring

Price: Around $43.00 for a 4’ x 6’ x .75” mat

Where to Get It: Treadall

Description: A solid floor is important in kettlebell training. I found the Treadall’s vulcanized rubber mats are some of the most durable. They are made for horses and work quite well in my garage. They are quite heavy (around 100lb each), and two mats would make a perfect little garage gym with some kettlebells.

Everything I Already Have

Price: Priceless

I feel fortunate to have an amazing family, supportive friends, a good job, and amazing gyms to work out of. I feel lucky to be able to write for Breaking Muscle and get to speak with legends in the strength and conditioning community. I am also thankful for the great commenters and readers, who often provide ideas for new materials.

Stay tuned for more 2014 holiday gift guides!

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