Complete beginner to strength

st123

Level 1 Valued Member
I probably should have posted this before buying kettlebells.

I am a slim male who has never trained before in my life. I am not too interested in appearance but am looking to improve my strength to just become stronger, more explosive and healthier in general. After skim-reading some books I decided to go with kettlebells - except that the only books I read about were kettlebell ones. So I am both uninformed about other training methods and unsure about whether it was the right decision to start with kettlebells (I haven't actually started yet - still waiting for them to arrive).

So should I continue down the kettlebell path or would something else be more suitable for a beginner?

Thanks
 

Diryan

Level 4 Valued Member
Whatever you enjoy doing suits best for you if you do not seek some sort of profesionalism in a sport. If you dont like doing something you most likely wont stick to training with it long enough to achieve results.

My advice would be to try kettlebells since you already started reading about them and try for minimum 3 months. If it doesnt suit you go for bodyweight or barbell.
 

godjira1

Level 5 Valued Member
Getting started is the key. Figure out to do a swing, goblet squat, a clean, a press, a push press, a front squat. Keep at it at 4-6 weeks, 3-4 times a week just practicing these moves. Don’t kill yourself, you should feel worked, but still good to go another round when you finish every session.

While waiting for your kettlebell to arrive, doing some pushups, pullups/chinups, squats/lunge variation, jumps and sprints will also create a toolkit that you can use in the future.
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
I probably should have posted this before buying kettlebells.

I am a slim male who has never trained before in my life. I am not too interested in appearance but am looking to improve my strength to just become stronger, more explosive and healthier in general. After skim-reading some books I decided to go with kettlebells - except that the only books I read about were kettlebell ones. So I am both uninformed about other training methods and unsure about whether it was the right decision to start with kettlebells (I haven't actually started yet - still waiting for them to arrive).

So should I continue down the kettlebell path or would something else be more suitable for a beginner?

Thanks
If you have the means... I would consider getting some coaching so that you learn safe effective kettlebell technique from the start.
Failing that feel free to post videos here, and people will be more than happy to provide you with honest and reliable feedback.
 

vegpedlr

Level 6 Valued Member
Kettlebells and bodyweight can take you far. Unless you have specific goals that are better served by barbells, KBs and your body are all you need. If you add a pull up bar and a TRX style suspension trainer, you greatly expand your options. Start with the DMPM. It’s discussed in a number of threads

Learn the Kettlebell swing. Then alternate sets of swings with basic strength moves, push up goblet squat, row. Finish with suitcase carries.

DMPM aka The Humane Burpee

10 swings
5 pushups, goblet squats, rows
10 swings
4 PU, GSQ, row
10 swings
3 reps each
10 swings
2 reps
10 swings
1 rep

Finish with some suitcase carries, or mix them in. As you get better use a heavier bell, add reps, shorten rests, do harder variations. Dan John’s Kettlebell Book is a great resource for starting out.
 

Stefan Olsson

Level 6 Valued Member
I second @vegpedlr that DMPM does the trick, and does it well! It covers everything!

Aside from Dan Johns kettlebell book I would advice Max Shank´s Master the kettlebell. A book that is aimed towards beginners and more advanced.
 
Last edited:

Anna C

Level 9 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
I am a slim male who has never trained before in my life.
Welcome to the world of training! If you are slim and have never trained (or worked, i.e. physical labor) to develop your muscles and strength, you have a very long road ahead. But don't worry, that's a good thing. There are many, many ways to travel that road and head in the direction of being a stronger, more capable version of you. And in the beginning, progress is relatively fast and just about anything works. The main thing is to get started and develop the habit -- make training a part of your life, and enjoy the process and rewards.

am looking to improve my strength to just become stronger, more explosive and healthier in general.
Any exercise methodology, progressed appropriately and performed effectively, will do this. Barbell strength training will make you stronger faster, and put on more muscle faster, than kettlebell training. But if you're not after the fastest progress, kettlebell training will do it too, and it has several other advantages (portable gym, convenience, simplicity, more meditative/skill based (some might say), etc.).

Although it's at least as much about the programming than the tool, one way to generalize it is that barbell training will put meat on your bones and make you look like a lifter. Kettlebell training will tend to develop more of a lean wiry strong body that moves well. Bodyweight training perhaps an even more difficult road to make real body changes and progress, though it too has its own special advantages.

But these are just generalizations for training emphasis if you followed one path for a couple of years or more, and there are lots of other influences that come into play -- nutrition, what you do outside of training time, what sort of programs you follow, and how consistent you are with training.

So should I continue down the kettlebell path or would something else be more suitable for a beginner?
It's a great way to start! Let us know how it goes and keep asking questions. You're on a good path.
 

North Coast Miller

Level 7 Valued Member
Kettlebells and sandbags. You can add all kinds of implements, but the basics of training will apply to whatever you use. Just get started on a pre-existing program that is billed to deliver what you want and have your form checked often.

Kettlebells have a slightly longer learning curve than more basic gear, but the mechanics you learn from properly using them will transfer to a lot of other modes.
 
Top Bottom