Safety Guidelines for Kettlebell Training

AUSactive Kettlebell Training Addendum to Safety Guidelines for Strength Training

The development of AUSactive’s Safety Guidelines for Strength Training has provided a foundation for the approval of kettlebell CEC programs.

The condition for approval of these educational programs is that they comply with the Safety Guidelines for Strength Training relating to health and movement screening, equipment, space and setting, instructor/ participant ratios and programming. It is recommended that AUSactive registered exercise professionals comply with these guidelines when instructing kettlebell exercises. Specific recommendations in relation to appropriate screening and progression for kettlebell training have been made. 

They included the following:  

  • Registered exercise professionals must ensure that the preexercise screening process identifies contraindications in the form of significant injuries, particularly to the shoulder, lower back, or hip.  
  • Registered exercise professionals must ensure that training and conditioning history is considered prior to implementing the more complex or ballistic kettlebell lifts.  
  • Registered exercise professionals need to take clients through a progressive approach to stability, control, and function before complex integration, particularly at speed.  
  • Good squatting and deadlift technique, with good lumbar/ pelvic/hip stability and function, plus good overhead shoulder patterning should be achieved beforehand.  
  • Clients should be able to demonstrate an ability to stabilise the trunk in three planes of motion against external forces with particular consideration to the deceleration and unilateral forces during complex and ballistic kettlebell movements. 
  • AUSactive will only approve kettlebell programs for CEC allocation if the content of the educational program is compliant with the Safety Guidelines for Strength Training and the more specific activity related recommendations as outlined above. 

To provide safe and effective programming and improved health outcomes for clients, it is imperative that registered exercise professionals initially complete an approved kettlebell CEC program and then continue to adhere to these safety and activity guidelines at all times. 

View the Safety Guidelines for Strength Training document.


AUSactive would like to thank members of the REPs Council expert reference group for their contribution to the development
of this addendum.

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