Swings and Get ups. I've been using kettlebells for a couple of years, but have not really done very much more than the swing, or used anything more than 16kg. The swing doesn't have the kettlebell against the wrist at any point, and during the get-up, another favourite, the kettlebell doesn't move against the wrist.

Punching Through. I understand the concept of 'punching through' the snatch at the top, allowing the bell's axis of rotation to be the ball and not the handle/hand.

Straight/Neutral Wrist. Yes I realise the wrist should not be extended or flexed in any way, straight line from knuckles to elbow in all kettlebell exercises.

My Issue. Heavy weights hanging from my wrists and resting on my forearm hurt. Extending or flexing my wrist towards the bell (broken wrist position) actually relieves some of the pain, but thats bad form.

My Question. Am I just being a 'wimp', should I expect a heavy weight resting on my forearm to always hurt, or is there good technique or maybe a better kettlebell design that should fix it?

Background Context. Youtube of 800lb deadlift. In this video the guy has scraped/healing shins before he even starts, and bruised thighs and kneecaps at the end. I know it's extreme, but I can't think this is good exercise, so at what weight do kettlebells become just another "not good exercise"?

  • 2
    Don't compare yourself to George Leeman. He has been a dedicated strongman since he was 18, and recently set an American record for raw deadlift (just belt, no straps) of 909lbs. He has different goals, and different ways of doing it.
    – Alec
    Aug 8, 2015 at 16:39
  • Definitely won't try compare, lol. I realise his goals are different from mine, but in a way the same, I want to be functionally fit and strong, and lifting that much must make you strong. How much should I expect to be able to use with a kettlebell without expecting those sorts of injuries?
    – Ninjanoel
    Aug 9, 2015 at 6:41
  • @NinjaNoel, have you consider getting yourself check by a doctor? With that said, have you given yourself long breaks from lifting, say 1 week or more?
    – Aizul
    Aug 11, 2015 at 3:33
  • lol, thanks @Aizul, that why I feel like a wimp, one question about "20 kg resting on a square centimeter of flesh causing pain" and you think I should get checked out by a doctor? Also, "lifting" kettlebells shouldn't need a weeks break, many kettlebell routines online (not condoning them) presume one will be kettlebelling on a daily basis. Current routine is twice a week or so.
    – Ninjanoel
    Aug 11, 2015 at 11:12
  • @NinjaNoel The reason why I said you should get yourself checked as most of the users here are not doctors. They could give you a "rough" diagnosis of your current situation. Same goes for your other problem. While I agree to your statement about lifting kettlebells, here is something to consider. Are you training for longevity? Or are you training to be the strongest within a short span of time?
    – Aizul
    Aug 12, 2015 at 2:35

1 Answer 1


Regarding the 800lb deadlift, I think that's the realm of major league baseball pitchers throwing 100+ mph fast balls. In both cases, those folks are pushing the upper limits of their physical capacity. Catching injuries, pushing super hard, and only able to sustain it for a period of their lives. That's a far cry from what most people consider "fitness" to be, if they take the time to define it.

Personally, I define fitness as having your body in good long term health and having the physical and emotional ability to handle the challenges you plan on imposing.

Am I just being a 'wimp', should I expect a heavy weight resting on my forearm to always hurt, or is there good technique or maybe a better kettlebell design that should fix it?

It shouldn't hurt, you're not being a wimp. It took me about 4 months to learn a barbell clean properly, as where one of my friends picked it up in about an hour. It was really demoralizing for me and I learned that in explosive movements you can't really "think" about what you're doing because once you start, the cow's out of the barn so speak. With explosive movements you have to keep doing them until you get the form right, then practice it like crazy to get the muscle memory locked in.

The banging of the wrist is probably the most common kettlebell problem, right next to ripped up palms from the friction (use chalk to solve).

I can't diagnose your form via this question, but the video I linked shows a more common problem: if you get the bell infront of you too much, it has to rotate around a lot at the top and smacks the crap out of you. If you keep it close to your body and time the rotation of the bar (in your grip) with the pause at the top (when the bell sort of stops mid air), you're golden.

This is actually really similar to a barbell clean, where you really want to put the weight into the right spot mid air, then get your body around it. If the bar (or bell) gets too far out in front or behind you, it's going to get nasty.

  • But, the weight just resting, anything larger than 16kg, hurts.
    – Ninjanoel
    Aug 9, 2015 at 6:45
  • I like your definition of fitness. 16kg used to be my target, as a reforming couch potato, 16 felt really heavy, so I'm pleased with that weight (fit and functional), and the swing and get-up are great additions to my knowledge/skills, but been considering more adventurous stuff recently now that 16 is starting to feel ok.
    – Ninjanoel
    Aug 9, 2015 at 6:50

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