Russian-style weights may help treat back problems

January 30, 2012 3:51:03 PM PST
Kettlebells are weights that have been used in Russia for centuries to train soldiers and athletes, and now they are showing promise as a way to treat back problems.

A Danish study in The Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health looked at 40 middle-aged women with back, shoulder and neck pain.

The kettlebell users reported less pain and greater strength in trunk and core muscles.

Using these weights encourages the body to move as one unit and a 20 minute routine burns about 21 calories a minute - as many as running a six-minute mile.

Kettlebells can be hard to control, so experts recommend learning proper form from a qualified instructor.