Keep Calm and Press On

So… you have successfully completed the Rite of Passage with a given kettlebell, but the next bell is just too heavy to  press consistently for three to five reps. Now what? There are many methods that work including, just starting over again with the last bell, but to many this may sound unappealing. It you’re bull-headed or just insist on lifting heavier,  I’ve got a solution custom-tailored for you.

“It’s as easy as “2,3… 1”
No, I didn’t stutter. Start the Rite of Passage over as written but instead of using the same bell again, use both the previous bell and one heavier. The rep scheme will change slightly, but the principle remains the same meaning each ladder will start off easy, progressively get harder, then start over and repeat.


3-RUNG LADDER DAYS = Old Bell x 2,3 + Heavier Bell x 1
4-RUNG LADDER DAYS = Old Bell x 3,4 + Heavier Bell x 1,2
5-RUNG LADDER DAYS = Old Bell x 5,5  + Heavier Bell x 1,2,2

Rest as much as necessary between sets to ensure you won’t miss your reps, you may even spread your workout throughout the day in a “greasing the groove” manner.

On 5-Rung Ladder Days I recommended breaking the workout up into two sessions with at least 30-minutes rest between the two sessions.

1. You MUST have already pressed the lighter of the two bells for  5 ladders  x 5 rungs (that’s 75 presses per arm in a single day).
2.  You must be able to press the heavier bell for at least 3 perfect reps.

Use good judgement and listen to your body. The inclusion of the heavier bell raises the average intensity per workout considerably, as a result you may need to take extra rest days.   Remember, the ability to train consistently trumps the ability to train infrequently at high intensity.

“That’s all folks.”

Keep Calm and Press On

Keep Calm and Press On


How’s Your Technique?

If technique is holding you back, a lesson with an experienced certified kettlebell instructor like myself can have dramatic results.  There can be many things holding you back like poor ankle mobility, improper breathing, lack of tension at the right moments, relaxed abs and more…   I’ve had many people PR in the press within as little as 15-minutes of applying some new skill I was able to identify as missing.

What’s the “Rite of Passage”?
The Rite of Passage is a highly effective program designed around the one arm military press with a kettlebell.  It uses a unique rep scheme call “ladders” that allows you to complete a high volume of presses while keeping your fatigue low.  Over weeks the total number or presses you perform per session steadily increases. I know dozens of men and women who have successfully built up to  one arm pressing 1/3rd bodyweight for women and 1/2 bodyweight for men overhead using this program.  You can get all the details in “Enter the Kettlebell” by Pavel Tsatsouline. Check it out here.

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