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Publication Date

Fall 2011

Degree Type

Thesis - Campus Access Only

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Peggy Plato


kettlebell training, metabolic syndrome, middle-aged, strength training, type 2 diabetes, women, Weight training for women--Physiological aspects, Metabolic syndrome, Kettlebells, Middle-aged women--Health and hygiene

Subject Areas

Kinesiology; Endocrinology; Women's studies


Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a compilation of interrelated risk factors with the potential to increase incidence of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. The prevalence of MetS is on the rise (AHA, 2009) with more women affected than men. There are substantial data supporting aerobic exercise in the prevention of MetS. However, Farrell et al. (2004) found an increase in MetS with advancing age among aerobically fit women. An independent and inverse relationship between muscular fitness and prevalence of MetS has been reported in men (Jurca et al., 2004). The effect of increasing muscular fitness on MetS has not been explored in women. The purpose of this thesis was to examine the effects of a kettlebell training program on the core components of MetS in women. Six physically inactive women, mean age (± SEM) 48.8 ± 2.9 years, BMI 31.8 ± 2.4 kg/m2, and meeting at least two other components of MetS, successfully completed the training program. Strength and aerobic fitness, body composition, and risk factors for MetS were measured before and after the twice a week, 10-week kettlebell program. None of the results were statistically significant; the small sample size and power adjustments for multiple tests reduced the ability to detect change. However, individual improvements in fasting glucose and body fat were encouraging and suggest that kettlebell training has potential for improving some components of MetS in middle-aged women.