What Size Kettlebell Should I Start With

What Size Kettlebell Should I start With?

By Coach Izzy

Now that you are curious about the sport of kettlebell lifting and want to learn more and get started, you are probably wondering:

What size kettlebell should I start with?

This is an area in which you, as a novice starting a kettlebell exercise program, should be in complete control. The caveat is that as a beginner, you do not know much about kettlebells and rely on the advice of those who are more seasoned to help you with your selection. You will find yourself approaching instructors and asking “What size kettlebell should I start with?” repeatedly. You want to trust them and take their advice; they are after all, far more experienced than you.

One common complaint I found is that several felt as though many of the answers were vague or felt scripted. Further inquiring revealed those answers were based on general guidelines and traditions passed down without ever having their validity questioned. They may work for the few who conform to the parameters but they fall short when individual variations are taken into consideration. There is more to selecting a load than gender or ambiguous guidelines.

A few other factors, though rarely mentioned, are of much higher importance when helping the novice lifter select his or her first kettlebell. If you consider yourself a neophyte and are wondering “What size kettlebell should I start with?” remember this is a big decision and should not be taken casually. This bell will determine whether the sport suits you and is something you want to pursue, or if you had enough after a couple of weeks and are ready to part ways.

Now that we understand the importance of selecting a proper size kettlebell, how do we go about it? What are the neglected but crucial factors determining the size of the kettlebell for the novice lifter? What will provide a reasonable challenge without overwhelming the apprentice? Please take the following into account when getting ready to purchase your first bell.

Let’s consider your kettlebell experience
Are you a complete novice or do you have some exposure? Yes, experienced lifters are excluded, if you are experienced you should be well acquainted with your working loads. Experience and learning make a big difference in how a load is perceived during execution.

How about exercise experience?
Are you a beginner who has had very little or no exposure to exercise in general? Or do you have some time under your belt? Or are you a former or currently competitive athlete? Or a recreational athlete? Or simply a well seasoned fitness enthusiast? Yes those factors play a huge role on how well acquainted with motion you are and what level of movement awareness you have developed.

Let’s not forget structural issues
Is the individual of sound structural health or recovering from musculoskeletal issues? How about minor chronic ailments? You cannot overlook those factors.

Consider the magnitude of the load is in relation to the lifter.
Six kilos may be more than sufficient for a petite female while barely noticeable on a brawny, seasoned fitness enthusiast.

Lastly,what about gender differences?
From my experience, unlike the traditional approach, I have not found gender to be a key factor when determining initial loads. Overall, women did not require different loads from their male counterparts when all the aforementioned factors were taken into account.

The chart below should help you answer “What size kettlebell should I start with?” and clear many doubts. On the left column, you have the constant of bodyweight. Yes, constant in the sense you are not going to wake up 20 or 30 pounds lighter in the next two days or two weeks. On top, you have the circumstances dictating the condition of the participant. Suggested loads are given for each combination. If you find yourself under two or more circumstances, simply average the load. Again, these are only suggestions and should not be taken as the final word. There’s always the chance they may not be right for you.

Coach Izzy’s kettlebell size selection for the novice lifter

What size kettlebell should I start with?
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

I never used a kettlebell I have some experience with kettlebells I am a complete fitness novice I have some experience exercising I’m an experienced fitness enthusiast I am recovering from musculoskeletal issues
I weigh 110 lbs or less 4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
6 Kg.
13 Lbs.
4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
6 Kg.
13 Lbs.
4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
I weigh between 110-140 lbs 4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
6 Kg.
13 Lbs.
4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
6 Kg.
13 Lbs.
8 Kg.
18 Lbs.
4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
I weigh between 140-170 lbs 4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
8 Kg.
18 Lbs.
4 Kg.
9 Lbs.
8 Kg.
18 Lbs.
12 Kg.
26 Lbs.
6 Kg.
13 Lbs.
I weigh between 170-200 lbs 8 Kg.
18 Lbs.
16 Kg.
35 Lbs.
6 Kg.
13 Lbs.
12 Kg.
26 Lbs.
16 Kg.
35 Lbs.
8 Kg.
18 Lbs.
I weigh 200+ lbs 12 Kg.
26 Lbs.
16 Kg.
35 Lbs.
8 Kg.
18 Lbs.
16 Kg.
35 Lbs.
16 Kg.
35 Lbs.
8 Kg.
18 Lbs.

If possible get 2 different size kettlebells. The heavier load will be more suitable for exercises in which we have the most mechanical advantage (such as 2 Hand Swings, High Pulls, Push Presses, etc). The lighter weight will work best for exercises in which the position of the bell, rather than its weight, determines its degree of difficulty. Overhead Presses, Windmills, Turkish Get Ups, and Renegade Rows are good examples. Use your ideal load for the heavy selection and the next lightest for the smaller weight. If you have gone as small as possible, stick to one weight. If in doubt, always err on the side of caution. Not sure where to get kettlebells? Check out one of my favorite retailers below. Quality kettlebells at great prices, and with certain promotions, Free shipping! Enjoy!

Click Image below to get your kettlebells


Click HERE to get your Kettlebells

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