Competition kettlebells vs Cast iron kettlebells

competition kettlebells compare to cast iron kettlebells

In the kettlebell market today, mostly well-known gym equipment names competition kettlebell and cast iron kettlebell. How the difference between competition kettlebells vs cast iron kettlebells? What are their pros and cons? Which one you should choose for workout? Let specify these concerns with VIC through this article.

Kettlebell has become popularly and widely used not only in professional competitions but also in gym center as well as workout at home.

Invest in a solid kettlebell, you just need to pay once and it will last for your lifetime. How economic! Kettlebell is portable and versatile; plus better gripping than dumbbell.

Anatomy of kettlebell

Anatomy of kettlebell

Firstly, let check how kettlebell is structured?

A kettlebell includes:

  • Bell: the part deciding main weight of the kettlebell
  • Handle: is the gripping part that attached with the bell part by horn. From horn up and to the corner, bend the angle to form an arc.
  • Base: is the foundation of the kettlebell, which is flat to keep the kettlebell stable when it is on the floor.

Regarding some of competition kettlebells, there are hollow core at the bottom that is connected to the empty core inside the bell.

Hollow core of kettlebell

Today, kettlebell is divided into 2 main types called competition kettlebell and classic kettlebell. Let’s analyze their characteristics with us!

Competition kettlebells (also known as pro grade kettlebells or sport kettlebells)

Competition kettlebell is used in competitions or for those who want to practice professionally. The reason is that the competition kettlebell has the handle design and the bell size that does not change even though the weight does.

Even if you hold a competition kettlebell 10kg or 40kg, their sizes are still the same. The handle parts are also the same from size to distance.

The shape of the competition kettlebell’s handle is rectangular; perpendicular edges. The sides are upright and bent at the 2 corners.

Some competition kettlebell manufacturers will keep the original hollow core at the base. This does not affect the quality of the base.

With such a hole, when the manufacturer wants to change the weight of the kettlebell, they just need to add metal to the bell quite conveniently. This also allows the kettlebell’s weight to be pushed towards the handle for increased balance and stability, making it easier for the practitioner to rotate the wrist.

Competition kettlebell

What are competitive kettlebells made of?

Competition kettlebell materials are usually cast iron or steel, and may be rubberized outside to prevent impact and protect the floor.

Some kettlebells have stainless steel or polished steel handles. This may make it more comfortable to hold, but run the risk of slipping during swinging or throwing movements.

Kettlebell color code in accordance with weight

Competition kettlebell is color-coded corresponds to the different weights so you can find the weight you need easily.

Refer to the following kettlebell color code interpretation:

Color-code of kettlebell

For other colors, they will be distinguished by the color of the stripes or number of stripes on the handle (depends on each brand).

Who should practice with competition kettlebell?

  • Competition kettlebell is suitable for high frequency repetitive training and high technical requirement.
  • Suitable for those who want to participate in competitions, athletes, olympic competitions.

Competition kettlebell Pros

  • The kettlebell size remains the same that even if you change the weight of the kettlebell, your weight gripping technique will remain intact.
  • The rectangular and narrow handle will help the practitioner easier to fix the hand and less fatigue.
  • In addition, the diameter of the handle section is 33-35mm. This is a moderate size to help the practitioner grasp more firmly, thereby using the force to perform the movement better.
  • The base surface of the kettlebell is wide and flat, and it is easy to balance on the floor.

Competition kettlebell cons

  • This grip design is better suited for one-handed exercise. For people with large hands, it will be difficult to hold with both hands.
  • The price of competition kettlebell will be more expensive than others.
  • Difficult to use 2 weights at once.

Cast iron kettlebells (also well known as classic kettlebells or regular kettlebells)

Cast iron kettlebell
Cast iron kettlebell

The cast iron kettlebell is cast with solid bowels, so the bell size and handle width vary by weight.

The larger the weight, the larger the bell diameter and the larger the handle width.

The handle shape of the cast iron kettlebell is an arc, which is bent from the horn to the corner and gradually widens to the sides. The material of classic kettlebells is usually cast iron, and because of the monolithic casting, there will be no hollow cores like competition kettlebells.

Cast iron kettlebell weight

Usually cast iron kettlebells do not have to be color-code because on the surface there are castings representing the weight corresponding to their sizes.

Cast iron kettlebell pros

  • Cast iron kettlebell has the advantage of being wider and slimmer arm, so it is easy to hold with 2 hands, especially with swing or squat movements.
  • The price of cast iron is usually cheaper because the core part is not arranged when casting.
  • For exercises that require two weights, cast iron kettlebells are overwhelmed because there are a range of smaller sizes.

Cast iron kettlebell cons

  • The handle section of the cast iron kettlebell has a quite large diameter, about 38mm. For those with small hands, it will be quite thick and difficult to grip even when using two hands.
  • Due to the shape of the handle being a wide arc to the sides, the kettlebell is only suitable for use with 2 hands. If used with one hand, you will find it difficult to fix the grip to keep the weight balance.
  • Because the size and handle of kettlebells are different with different weights, it can be difficult for the practitioner to constantly get used to the new grip when changing the weights. Therefore it is not used in competition.
  • With cast iron kettlebells that are lighter, the small base is more difficult to balance on the floor.
Kettlebell handle & surface

Who should practice with cast iron kettlebell?

  • Cast iron kettlebell is suitable for beginners to use with two hands, especially for those with big hands.
  • Suitable for those with a lower budget or commercial gym fitnesses.

Table comparing competition kettlebells vs cast iron kettlebells

ComparasionCompetition kettlebellCast iron kettlebell
MaterialSteel/Cast ironCast iron
DimensionSame sizeChanges based on weight
Weight classificationColor-codedNot always color-coded
HandleSame sizeWider

In addition to the above two types, another weight is adjustable kettlebell that can adjust the weight flexibly. This kettlebell saves you space, but will not guarantee the reliability and technique to use.

Where to find reliable kettlebell manufacturer?

Nowadays there are many metal foundries that can cast kettlebells in the world, especially low-cost manufacturers from China.

However, the consideration between price and quality is always a matter of careful consideration. The selection of manufacturers of kettlebells should be based on the following criteria:

  • Geographical location: this is important because the country the producer belongs to will be affected by the tax and price policy. Especially in the context of the current trade war. In addition, the transport from long distances also affects freight and shipping time.
  • Reputation: refer to the number of years of operation, customer reviews as well as pictures of the company’s products. This is often shown on a website, e-commerce sites or social networking sites.
  • Price and quality: these are two associated criteria. You cannot ask for a foundry to make a kettlebell of high quality but cheap. Depending on your budget and usage needs, make your own choices.
Kettlebell manufacturers

Consider these kettlebell manufacturers for your consideration:

  • A company that specializes in manufacturing competition kettlebell with a high product perfection. However, their price is quite high.
  • The top companies in manufacturing kettlebell in high quality, especially with competition had hollow core. With the price 50% higher than the market, you can be sure of the product.
  • The leading OEM casting company in Vietnam. Specializing in the production of cast iron parts, steel castings … With large orders of high quality requirements and reasonable prices, this is an good option if you are looking for a wholesaler to cooperate with.
  • Chinese foundries:  In China there is always a high competition in production prices and their quality is also quite average compared to cheap prices. However, due to the ongoing trade war, they are being imposed with high tax rates and there is instability in production when a series of investment capital is gradually shifting to Vietnam.

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