Four Sinister Success Stories

If you’ve read Simple & Sinister by Pavel, you understand the amount of work it takes to attain the “Simple” goal alone, and how much more work and dedication it takes to reach the “Sinister” goal (both goals are shown in the table below). This article outlines the training plans of three of my students […]

How Built Strong Helped Me Achieve Sinister

The Goal: Sinister When I first looked for advice to achieve the Sinister goal of Kettlebell Simple & Sinister by Pavel, the response I received was to focus all your training on swings, get-ups, and goblet squats. I like to listen to others and then make my own decisions based on a combination of research […]

All-Around Training for the Tactical Athlete

In the movie “Remember the Titans,” Coach Boone is the new head football coach of the first integrated school in Virginia. The school staff and parents immediately begin criticizing him. As they are preparing to leave for pre-season camp, Boone is carrying his playbook—a very thin portfolio of plays. Assistant Coach: “Awful skinny playbook in’t it?” […]

Introducing the StrongFirst “WOD”

“If at first you don’t succeed, redefine success.” This caption for a New Yorker cartoon nails the “FOMO” mentality of a “workout of the day.” Then why, might you ask, is StrongFirst jumping on the bandwagon and introducing its own “WOD”? Please read on. The biological law of accommodation states that the response of an […]

Lift No Faster Than You Can Talk: An Excerpt from S&S 2.0

We are proud to officially present Kettlebell Simple & Sinister: Revised and Updated Edition, or simply S&S 2.0. Time is a man’s best friend if he makes good use of it and a man’s worst enemy if he lets it run him. Most people who live by the clock are miserable sorts of critters. But […]

Minimalist Kettlebell Training for Maximal Returns in BJJ

Last year, the primary focus of my training shifted. For my entire adult life, I had been both a strength enthusiast and a martial artist—in that order. When things started to open back up and I was able to train Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) regularly again, I decided to swap these priorities. I would, for the […]

The Best All-Around Training Method EVER

It is a tall order for a training method to live up to the title of this article—but one does. It checks off the following boxes: ☑ Power ☑ Strength ☑ Muscle hypertrophy ☑ Fat loss ☑ “Cardio” ☑ “Work capacity” ☑ Longevity through mitochondrial adaptations ☑ It “gives you more than it takes out […]

Finding the “Easy” in Simple and Sinister…and Life

I believe one of the secrets to thriving in life is seeking out difficult challenges, and then finding the “easy” within them. Let’s think about your diet, for example. Do you want to suffer, deprive yourself, starve, and hate the foods you get to eat in order to improve your body composition and other diet-related […]

The Timeless Solution for Swings, Snatches, and More

“Time is the school in which we learn, time is the fire in which we all burn.”—Delmore Schwartz Density Training Eighteen years ago, when I began my kettlebell journey, I also started relying on the clock to manage my training. Specific work-to-rest ratios were my foundation. When renowned wrestling and strength coach Ethan Reeve posted […]

Get Started: Foundational Principles of Results-driven Kettlebell Training

There’s a lot more to getting stronger than the actions of simply, and progressively, lifting more. Much of it has to do with caring about setting a proper foundation of solid skills and a successful approach that guides training decisions. For kettlebell beginners particularly, that means starting out by knowing and addressing limitations that could […]