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Kettlebell Clean and Jerk

Kettlebell Clean and Jerk

The Kettlebell Clean and Jerk is a dynamic and powerful exercise that targets multiple muscles in the body. This compound movement combines both a clean and a jerk, making it a full-body exercise that challenges your strength, endurance, and coordination. The clean portion of the exercise involves lifting the kettlebell from the floor to the rack position, where the kettlebell is resting on the forearm. This movement primarily works the muscles in your lower body, including your glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps, while also engaging your core muscles for stability. Once you've completed the clean, you transition into the jerk phase of the exercise. This explosive movement requires you to drive the kettlebell overhead using the power generated from your legs and hips. The jerk targets your shoulders, triceps, and upper back muscles, helping to build strength and definition in your upper body. The Kettlebell Clean and Jerk not only helps to increase muscular strength and power, but it also improves cardiovascular fitness due to its high-intensity nature. It is a versatile exercise that can be modified by adjusting the weight of the kettlebell and the speed at which you perform the movement. When incorporating the Kettlebell Clean and Jerk into your workout routine, it's important to start with a weight that allows you to maintain proper form and technique throughout the movement. Gradually increase the weight as you become more comfortable and proficient. Remember to warm up adequately before attempting this exercise to prevent injury and consult with a fitness professional if you have any pre-existing conditions or concerns.


  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your knees slightly bent.
  • Place a kettlebell on the ground between your feet.
  • Bend at the hips and knees, lowering your body to grab the kettlebell with both hands.
  • Keep your back straight and your core engaged as you lift the kettlebell off the ground.
  • As you stand up, use your hips and legs to generate momentum.
  • As the kettlebell reaches chest height, use your upper body to pull it towards your shoulder and rotate your wrist.
  • Continue to pull the kettlebell upwards until it reaches the rack position at your shoulder with your elbow tucked in.
  • From the rack position, shift your weight slightly onto your heels and dip your body by bending your knees.
  • Explosively extend your legs and press the kettlebell overhead, fully extending your arm.
  • Lock out your arm and engage your shoulder muscles at the top of the movement.
  • Lower the kettlebell back down to the rack position by bending your elbow and controlling the descent.
  • From the rack position, lower the kettlebell back down to the starting position between your feet.
  • Repeat the movement for the desired number of repetitions.

Tips & Tricks

  • Start with a lighter kettlebell to master the technique before progressing to heavier weights.
  • Engage your core throughout the movement to maintain stability and prevent lower back injuries.
  • Focus on the explosiveness of the hip drive to generate power during the upward movement.
  • Use the momentum from the hip drive to smoothly transition from the clean to the jerk.
  • Keep your wrist straight and elbow locked out during the overhead portion of the jerk to prevent strain.
  • Practice proper breathing techniques, inhaling during the clean and exhaling during the jerk.
  • Maintain a neutral spine position throughout the exercise to avoid unnecessary stress on the back.
  • Incorporate regular mobility and flexibility exercises to improve overall movement and range of motion.
  • Gradually increase the weight as you become more comfortable and confident in your technique.
  • Listen to your body and give yourself enough rest and recovery time between workouts to prevent overtraining.

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