Dumbbell Swings vs Kettlebell Swings

jlo booty1 Dumbbell Swings vs Kettlebell SwingsKettlebell swings are one of my favorite posterior chain exercises.

  • I use it with athletes to increase running speed & power
  • I use it to improve pelvic balance & maximize core strength
  • and I use it to help skinny white ladies build a booty worthy of J-Lo

Unfortunately, not every gym has a full set of kettlebells to go along with all their dumbbells.

And seeing as my local gym was one of those gyms without any kettlebells…and I was sick and tired of substituting DBs for KBs all the time, I went searching for an option.

Enter the kettleclamp….. a really smart (and simple) piece of engineering that allows me to modify any dumbbell into a kettlebell.

kettleclamp Dumbbell Swings vs Kettlebell Swings

To test it out, I brought a pair down to my local gym, grabbed one of my buddies, tossed him one of the clamps and told him that I needed a guinea-pig for a product-review video.

Here are the results.

Note – I wanted to test how user-friendly the kettleclamp was.

  • Was it easy to assemble?

Yes – for this experiment, I didn’t give my guinea-pig any instructions on how to assemble or work with the kettleclamp. The video we shot was his first try with the clamp – you can see how he fiddled with the pivoting handle before he went to work with it. 

  • Does it work like a “real” kettlebell?

For swings & cleans, it works exactly like a “real” kettlebell.

For snatches, we had a bit of an issue with lowering the kettleclamp from the overhead position back down to the hanging position. Due to the shape and size of the big-ass dumbbells we were using, we kept bashing our shoulders with the side of the dumbbell. Not a huge problem, but it forced us to modify our form a little bit.

Overall, the kettleclamp is a kick-ass piece of fitness equipment….and as soon as I can convince them to set up an affiliate program, you will be able to buy them via Health Habits.

Doug Robb is a personal trainer, a fitness blogger and author, a competitive athlete, a social media nerd and a student of nutrition and exercise science. Since 2008, Doug has brought his real-world experience online via his health & fitness blog, Health Habits.


  1. Brit

    November 25, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    I’ve only done dumbbell swings one-handed. Would a clamp make a difference for that?

    • healthhabits

      November 26, 2012 at 9:52 am

      It will make a difference, but depending on 2 factors, that difference may be insignificant to you.

      1. Larger, heavier dumbbells force the legs wider apart – this is only a problem if you are lifting larger, heavier DBs

      2. The KB swings like a pendulum in the hands at the bottom of the swing. The DB doesn’t. Because the DB doesn’t swing at the bottom, the lifter has to absorb this energy. This may r may not be a problem depending upon the weight of the DB, the mobility/flexibility of the lifter and the core strength of the lifter. Basically, the swing can expose weaknesses and if they exist, the lower back will pay the price.

      This force can be modified by making the lift less of a swing and more of a vertical lift. This is the big difference I see between swings using DBs vs KBs