SFB Bodyweight Instructor Certification

SFB Bodyweight Instructor Certification

Get a powerlifting quality workout anywhere, anytime, using your bodyweight as resistance.

Learn the body language of strength—and turn your whole body into a devastating clenched fist.

Enter the SFB cert.

Strength is a skill.  There is even a term in Russian sports science: strength-skill.  StrongFirst has systematized subtle and powerful strength-skills from a wide variety of disciplines.  From breathing and stance subtleties of ancient martial arts to cutting edge neuroscience research.  From elite powerlifting techniques to latest breakthroughs in spine biomechanics.  From arm-wrestlers’ leverage tricks to physical therapy “hacks” for waking up unwilling muscles.  From Russian weightlifting experience to Eastern European gymnasts’ secrets… For the first time in history this rich and diverse body of knowledge has been organized into a logical and straightforward system for delivering instant strength gains.

We start with our unique progression for abdominal strength and mastery.  StrongFirst knows abs.  Prof. Stuart McGill has measured midsection strength of many elite strongmen, powerlifters, fighters, and other athletes.  He found that, pound for pound, the author of the SFB curriculum had the strongest abs.  Bret Contreras has compared muscle recruitment in different exercises.  The StrongFirst plank activated the abs 300% more intensely than the traditional plank.

Although most SFB students have admitted that they had never before worked their abs so hard, bullet-proof abs are not the end-all.  They serve a greater purpose—total body strength.  Enter the “bodyweight powerlifts”:

  • The Push: one-arm/one-leg pushup, wall supported handstand pushup
  • The Pull: tactical pullup, hanging leg raise, front lever
  • The Squat: pistol

We fieldstrip these fundamental exercises.  Being able to do the moves is not enough.  A professional strength coach must be able to take each exercise apart to its smallest parts, “clean” it, “oil” it, and then put it back together strong.  You will get a complete toolbox of regressions and progressions to accommodate almost any student.

Then comes the real game changer—the StrongFirst battery of tension techniques.  They are very subtle but unbelievably powerful.  Bodyweight strength expert Brad Johnson performed an iron cross on the rings under different sets of conditions and measured his strength.  The top three tension techniques identified by the author of the SFB curriculum yielded a 40-pound increase in strength!  Powerlifting coach extraordinaire Louie Simmons has summed up what Pavel Tsatsouline has done: “You have reverse-engineered what the strongest do naturally.”

Once you have internalized the body language of the strong, you will be able to apply it to most lifting and gymnastic strength skills.  Bodyweight, kettlebell, barbell—you name it.  National bench press record holder Jack Reape points out that learning how to make a bodyweight exercise harder will teach a lifter how to make a barbell lift easier.  There is a great synergy between different resistance modalities—if your training is principle based.  StrongFirst system is on the same page with the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program: “One mind, any weapon.”

Incidentally, big guys who move a lot of iron owe it to themselves to become bodyweight strong.  How can you call yourself “strong” if you cannot even handle your body?  Bud Jeffries’ 1,000-pound squat is awesome—but not shocking, given his body structure.  What makes Bud superhuman is that he can flip upside down and knock off a dozen handstand pushups—he is not built for this.  Ed Coan, the greatest powerlifter of all time, routinely did 10 strict pullups with additional 150 pounds.  Russian practically dominate the sport today.  Is it a coincidence that an average Russian powerlifter is able to do 22.5 strict pullups? (Belsky, 2000)  We do not think so.

At the SFB cert you will be drinking from a fire hose.  State-of-the-art strength and hypertrophy program design… How to seamlessly fit bodyweight exercises into a barbell or kettlebell regimen… The truth about isometrics…  And much more.

You will get stronger—much stronger—before the cert concludes.  And you will walk away a much better strength coach.

Join the elite today.

SFB: In case civilization is temporary.®



The instructor candidates must pass two tests:

  1. Teaching safely and effectively.
  2. Strength test.

The teaching test is administered at the end of the course.

Candidates have a choice of taking the strength test during the course or submitting a video up to 6 months after the end of the course.

The strength test for men is the one-arm/one leg pushup. One side is tested.

The strength test for women is a one-arm pushup with feet at shoulder width.

In rare cases a highly accomplished, national- or international-level coach or athlete may be exempt from the strength test due to a chronic injury.

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