Kettlebell training has exploded in popularity over the last decade, offering an efficient full body workout utilizing just one compact piece of equipment. Unlike traditional dumbbells with fixed weight plates on each end, kettlebells have an offset center of mass caused by the single handle. This unique design requires you to control the asymmetrical weight distribution when lifting, swinging, or holding the kettlebell, challenging your muscles in new ways.
While standard kettlebells are made of solid iron or steel, many now incorporate rubber bases on the bottom. These offer advantages over traditional all-metal kettlebells when exercising on various surfaces. Rubber bases protect your floors, reduce noise, and provide grip for dynamic kettlebell moves.
This article will cover the benefits of choosing a kettlebell with a rubber base for your home gym. I’ll review factors to consider when selecting the best model for your needs. I’ll also showcase the top 5 kettlebells with rubber bases currently on the market. Finally, I’ll answer frequently asked questions about maintaining and using rubber base kettlebells in your training.
Why Choose a Kettlebell with a Rubber Base?
There are several convincing reasons to opt for a kettlebell with a rubber base versus an all iron or steel construction. These benefits make them ideal for use in a home, apartment, or anywhere you want to minimize noise and floor damage.
Protects Floors from Damage
One of the biggest perks of a rubber base is protecting your floors, whether finished wood, tile, laminate, or exercise mats. Traditional cast iron or steel kettlebells can easily crack tiles, leave scratches on wood, and permanently dent softer surfaces when dropped or set down forcibly. The rubber base absorbs force and impact, preventing damage to your floors. No more having to worry about preserving your surfaces!
Reduces Noise for Quieter Workouts
Working out with traditional iron kettlebells often involves plenty of noise from swinging, jerking, and especially dropping the weight. The metal on metal contact creates loud bangs and clanking sounds. For those living in apartments or who prefer a quieter workout, this can be annoying and prohibitive. With a rubber base, noise is significantly reduced to a muted “thud” when dropped and barely any clanking as the kettlebell moves. Your downstairs neighbors or family members will appreciate the volume reduction!
Provides Stable Grip for Balancing Exercises
Some kettlebell exercises involve holding the bell upside down by the handle or balancing it on your forearm or body. The smooth metal construction of a traditional kettlebell can cause unstable sliding and wobbling as you try to balance it, requiring extra muscle engagement to control. The rubber base offers increased grip and stability when holding the kettlebell upside down or on your limbs for a more controlled, safer workout.
Allows Dynamic Swinging Exercises
The rubber base enables unique dynamic exercises where you swing the kettlebell like a pendulum between your legs. Safely swinging an iron kettlebell runs the risk of banging your knees or legs. But the rubber base absorbs force as you swing it, while still offering the weighted resistance. The smooth rubber also won’t catch on clothing or abrade your skin during swings.
Less Worry About Rust and Corrosion
Leaving an iron or steel kettlebell outside or in a humid environment runs the risk of eventual rust and corrosion, damaging the finish and weakening the metal. With a rubber base encasing the iron center, oxidation is prevented provided the rubber remains intact. This extends the life of your kettlebell despite weather conditions.
Easier on Wrists and Forearms
Some rubber base kettlebells allow direct skin contact with the rubber surface when grasped upside down. The smooth rubber offers a secure grip without being abrasive on your hands and wrists. Extended contact with hard, cold steel can cause discomfort over time. The rubber base provides similar stability with more comfort.
Now that you know the many benefits of choosing a rubber base kettlebell, let’s examine what features to look for when shopping around.
Factors to Consider When Picking a Rubber Base Kettlebell
With the rise in popularity of rubber base kettlebells, countless options now flood the market from a slew of brands. Prices range from budget to premium. Some include basic standard features while others offer unique specs. Here are the key factors you should evaluate when selecting the best rubber base kettlebell for your needs:
Kettlebells are available in an enormous range of weights, typically starting around 5 lbs going up to over 100 lbs. Consider what weight amount would be appropriate for your current strength levels and workout goals. The right kettlebell weight provides substantial challenge without compromising safe form. Most home users should look in the 15 to 40 lb range for starters. Understand that more complex moves will require lighter weights to perfect technique.
Standard kettlebell handles are around 1.5 inches diameter, although lighter weights may be thinner and heavier weights thicken to over 2 inches diameter. Pay attention to the handle size that best fits your grip strength and hand size. Too thin and heavy weights may strain your hands. Too thick and lighter weights become awkward to grasp. The right handle size helps prevent hand and wrist fatigue.
Single Weight or Adjustable
The most basic and affordable rubber base kettlebells are single weight. But many now offer adjustable weight plates allowing you to change the resistance amount on one bell. Adjustables cost more but provide flexibility if you want to use a single kettlebell for a wide range of weights. Keep in mind change plates sold separately.
Solid or Hollow Base
Rubber kettlebell bases come in solid or hollow variants. Hollow bases are generally cheaper but may be less durable over time. Solid rubber construction costs more but withstands intensive use and dropping better. Hollow bases do reduce overall weight, but may sacrifice stability. Evaluate your budget and needs.
Thicker, wider rubber bases offer maximum floor protection and support when holding the bell upside down. Very thin bases save weight but diminish stability for balancing exercises. Look for at least a 1⁄2 inch rubber width, with 1 inch or more ideal for preventing sliding on surfaces. Thinner bases also produce more noise when dropped.
Some rubber base kettlebells conceal the inner iron plate within solid rubber. Others cut out a window exposing the iron plate inside. This is purely aesthetic preference and doesn’t affect function. Although having the iron covered may prevent long term corrosion.
Coating on Inner Iron Plate
Traditional raw cast iron will eventually rust with moisture exposure. Many brands now apply a coating such as paint or enamel to the iron plate sealed inside the rubber base. This adds protection against corrosion and rust deterioration over time with use.
Flat or Convex Base
Most rubber bases are entirely flat to maximize full contact with the floor. Some brands configure the base in a subtle convex shape. While this may assist certain swinging motions, fully flat bases tend to provide most stability for balancing upside down exercises.
Numerous companies now produce rubber base kettlebells, some established fitness brands and others newer to the market. In general, bigger brands often have better quality control and durability testing over little known companies. But lesser brands can still deliver quality at a lower price point in many cases.
You can find basic rubber base kettlebells for as low as $40 and up to over $100 for adjustable models from the major brands. Set a budget while keeping in mind you generally get what you pay for in terms of quality construction and durability. Sales prices can offer deals on premium kettlebells.
Online Ratings & Reviews
Always check reviews from other buyers before purchasing a given rubber base kettlebell model. This can reveal potential quality issues not obvious just reading product descriptions and specs. However, don’t rely solely on Amazon ratings, instead read reviews across various unbiased sites.
Many basic kettlebells will have warranties covering manufacturer defects for only 30-90 days. For pricier adjustable kettlebells, look for at least a 1 year or longer warranty for peace of mind in case issues arise. Longer warranties typically indicate greater expected durability.
Now let’s profile the top 5 highly rated rubber base kettlebells showcasing the key considerations covered above.
Top 5 Kettlebells With Rubber Bases
1. CAP Barbell Rubber Coated Kettlebell
This rubber coated kettlebell from CAP Barbell provides a budget-friendly option backed by a well-known fitness brand. The solid one-piece iron casting is fully encased in rubber aside from a small window exposing the plate. A textured rubber handle ensures secure grip.
- Available weights: 5 – 50 lbs
- Handle diameter: 1.3” – 1.7” depending on weight
- Dimensions: 9” x 12” x 4”
- Single piece cast iron covered in 0.5” rubber coating
- Minimal iron window for reduced corrosion
- Good price value for the quality
- Quieter drop and bounce than traditional kettlebells
- Rubber coating cushions against floor damage
- Provides stability for racking and pressing
- Only 90 day manufacturer’s warranty
- Rubber has strong odor initially
- Slight seam visible around iron window
Best for: Beginners to intermediates wanting basic rubber base kettlebell starting under $50. Provides solid quality without breaking the budget.
Price: $40-$90 depending on weight.
2. MDUSA Rubber Coated Kettlebell
This rubber coated kettlebell from MDUSA offers an ergonomic shape and premium quality rubber construction. The glossy finish resists scratches and scuffs even under heavy use.
- Weights from 10 – 50 lbs
- Handle diameter 1.3” – 1.7”
- Dimensions: 10” x 12” x 5”
- Iron encapsulated in 1” solid rubber base
- Powder coated iron for corrosion resistance
- Thick durable rubber base
- Resists fading and deformation
- 6 month replacement warranty
- Flat base provides superior stability
- Only available in limited weight increments
- Higher price than basic options
- Lacks removable change plates
Best for: Intermediates to advanced users wanting maximum durability for dynamic lifts. Versatile for improving grip strength.
Price: $70-$140 based on weight.
3. Titan Fitness Adjustable Rubber Coated Kettlebell
This adjustable rubber coated kettlebell from Titan Fitness provides a wide weight range in one product. Large removable change plates allow easy weight adjustments from 10 – 40 lbs.
- Adjusts from 10 – 40 lbs
- Handle diameter 1.2”
- Dimensions: 9.5” x 11” x 11”
- Includes (4) 5 lb change plates
- Quality powder coated cast iron
- Convenient weight flexibility
- Solid stability for presses and swings
- 1 year replacement warranty
- Change plates won’t rust or corrode
- Base prone to scuffing and marking
- Changing plates is cumbersome
- Only two weight settings by default
Best for: Beginners wanting to gradually increase kettlebell weight challenge. Also ideal for small spaces.
4. Yes4All Powder Coated Kettlebell
This powder coated kettlebell from Yes4All offers excellent corrosion resistance and a secure textured grip. The dome shaped bottom allows easy storage but provides less floor contact when upside down.
- Weights from 5 – 60 lbs
- Handle diameter 1.1” – 2”
- Dimensions: 9” x 12” x 5”
- Cast iron with chip resistant powder coating
- Convex rubber base with minimal floor contact
- Excellent rust protection
- Textured handle prevents hand slippage
- 30-day money back guarantee
- Dome shape helps storage
- Round base can rock and wobble
- No change plates included
- Short 90 day warranty period
Best for: Beginners wanting maximum rust protection for minimal cost. Convex base works best for basic upright lifts versus overhead balancing.
Price: $25-$60 based on weight
5. Sporzon Rubber Coated Kettlebell
This rubber coated kettlebell from Sporzon provides excellent grip and stability from its wide flat base. The tough rubber withstands years of intensive use and abuse.
- Weights from 12 – 53 lbs
- Handle diameter 1.3” – 2”
- Dimensions: 10.5” x 12.5” x 5”
- Quality molded rubber with minimal seams
- 5 year manufacturer warranty
- Firm flat base for maximum floor contact
- Resistant to oils, scratches, and fading
- Excellent grip with textured handle
- Protects floors from dropping
- Limited weight options
- Rubber has lingering chemical smell
- Relatively expensive per pound
Best for: Serious trainees wanting a nearly indestructible bell for high intensity lifting. Stable base for precarious overhead holds.
Price: $80-$150 based on weight
This covers a solid lineup of top-rated rubber base kettlebells spanning budget to premium options. But you may still have questions if new to training with kettlebells. Below are answers to frequent questions about properly using kettlebells with rubber bases.
Frequently Asked Questions About Rubber Base Kettlebells
Are rubber base kettlebells durable enough for frequent, intensive use?
Yes, rubber coated kettlebells are highly durable for intensive training. Quality solid rubber bases are resistant to cracks and deformation from being dropped repeatedly. Encased iron plates will withstand years of hard use without damage. Look for thick (1” +) rubber and be wary of cheap hollow plastic bases. The best rubber bases will outlast traditional iron kettlebells in terms of withstand abuse.
Can any size/weight kettlebell have a rubber base?
Most brands offer rubber bases on kettlebells starting around 5 lbs up to around 50 lbs, suitable for nearly any training level. Extremely light and extremely heavy kettlebells may be difficult to find with rubber base options or limit certain exercises. But the average trainee will have no issues finding ideal rubber base kettlebells in the 10-40 lb weight range for full body training.
Is there a big difference between basic and premium rubber base kettlebells?
There can be a significant difference in quality, construction, and durability between budget and premium rubber base kettlebells. Cheaper options may have thinner, hollow bases prone to splitting while premium brands invest in nearly indestructible solid rubber molds. You get what you pay for in terms of long term reliability. However, cheaper bells can still work for gentle home use. Evaluate customer reviews closely.
How much space do you need to safely use rubber base kettlebells?
A 6-8 foot clear diameter area is recommended for swinging kettlebells between your legs. Expect the bell to bounce and roll 2-3 feet on drops. Ensure overhead presses have room. Unlike dumbbells, you can’t stop momentum mid-swing. Remove objects like furniture from the swing and drop zone to prevent collisions and damage. Use on mats or grass to be extra safe.
Can you use rubber base kettlebells for juggling and other skills?
Yes, the rubber base works excellent for kettlebell flipping, juggling, and tosses since it won’t damage floors on drops. The smooth rubber also won’t “stick” when contacting your forearms, chest, or shoulders when tossing. Beginners should practice juggling first with light weights. Remember rubber bases bounce and roll more than traditional kettlebells.
Do rubber bases limit the types of exercises you can perform?
Rubber bases don’t restrict any standard kettlebell exercises like swings, cleans, snatches, presses, or Turkish get-ups. You maintain the same range of motion capabilities as a traditional solid iron kettlebell. The rubber bottom is most advantageous for limiting noise and floor damage. The only exception may be exercises requiring you to grip the bell by the bottom rather than handle.
How does maintenance compare between rubber and traditional iron kettlebells?
Maintenance is simpler with rubber coated kettlebells. You don’t need to worry about keeping bare steel conditioned to prevent rust since the encased iron is protected. Avoid letting moisture inside rubber cover or it could corrode over time. Clean sweat off routinely and inspect rubber for cuts exposing iron. Apply vinyl conditioner to maximize life of rubber.
Rubber coated kettlebells clearly provide some clear advantages over traditional all metal bells when working out at home. But regardless of material, kettlebell training offers an extremely efficient way to build total body strength, sculpt your physique, and enhance cardiovascular fitness using just one piece of equipment. Kettlebells work major muscle groups like your hips, legs, shoulders, and core in ways few other tools can match. Don’t be intimidated by the unique design. Start off slowly mastering the two hand swing and overhead press to develop foundational skills before advancing to more complex single arm and dynamic kettlebell exercises. Used properly and safely, kettlebells can take your workout to the next level.