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Kettlebell workouts can translate into stronger adductors.
Andreas Rentz/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images
The hip adductor muscles of the inner thigh flex, extend and stabilize the hip joint. вЂњThis stability is important for both acceleration and deceleration of movements, be it with the kettlebell or activities in life,вЂќ notes kettlebell champion and trainer Lorna Kleidman. And if you play soccer, football or hockey, for example, tackles and changes of direction can twinge the adductors and lead to groin strain. Strengthening the inner thigh muscles can be especially helpful for athletes.
An inner-thigh circuit can involve three to four sessions a week, working with a kettlebell weighing 20 to 30 pounds for male beginners and 15 to 20 pounds for novice females. To continue to progress in your strengthening of the inner thighs, increase the kettlebell weight or decrease your rest as your circuit becomes easier, Kleidman suggests. Perform the exercises in your inner-thigh circuit three times.
Double-Arm Swings with Vertical Jump
You may think the double-arm swing provides sufficient challenge to your cardiovascular system and the posterior chain -- all the muscles at the back of the body -- but to work the inner thigh, you will have to add another level of difficulty. As with the standard swing, you start with feet shoulder-width apart, bell lowered between your knees. As you swing the bell up to level with the top of your head, jump a few inches or more in the air. Beat your legs together, Kleidman advises, and then land with the legs in the starting position. Work up to 15 repetitions.
Double-Arm Swings with Jumps Side to Side
This exercise can provide a sense of accomplishment, as your core, posterior chain and ever-stronger adductors work to control the forward swing and lateral body movement simultaneously. As the name suggests, you perform the double-arm swing with feet together at the top of the swing, and a jump-step to one side and then the other for each swing of the bell between and slightly behind the knees. Kleidman recommends 12 reps in each direction. Kettlebell trainer Paul Katami advocates a simpler side step -- appropriate for beginners -- without a jump for this exercise, naming his version of this exercise the double-arm step-out swing.
Close out your inner-thigh circuit with the lateral lunge, slightly less cardio intensive than the other exercises but one that is focused on the adductors. With your kettlebell in the rack position, snuggled between your right shoulder and forearm, step sideways to the left. Meanwhile lower your hand so the handle slips down to the fingers, palm facing forward, lowering the bell almost to the floor. Decisively push off the floor with your left foot to stand back upright, returning the kettlebell to rack. Perform 15 repetitions on each side.