Kettlebells Archives - Mojo Strength

StrongFirst Cert is Getting Closer.

6 Weeks till Cert!

I’ve had a few calls this week from Guys n Gals signed up to The StrongFirst Instructor Certificate here in Sydney June. Where to stay, what to bring, where are we eating etc.

Pretty simple questions, but important. Here are some answers:

So, check out Air BnB  for Matraville or check out beautiful Coogee Beach or Maroubra Beach check transport though.

Food, we have some great Cafe’s pretty close by so no problems there. Coogee beach has some amazing restaurants and bars for the evening.

What to bring on the day.

  • A spare T-shirt or 2 and some comfy training gear. (You will sweat a lot even though it is winter.)
  • Medical tape for your hands (blisters may appear)
  • Hand cream for the evening and a nail file or similar to smooth up callouses.
  • Some easy snacks like nuts or bars for energy during the breaks
  • A towel
  • Pen and note book
  • Lunch, if you want to eat in house
  • Water
  • Your favourite test size kettlebells ( We have some but you might have your faves)
  • An open mind and plenty of energy.

‘Boy scout/girl scout always be prepared.

My Training:

CT my coach, has been “anal”yzing my lifts. That is not a misspell. I want everything to be spot on. Small details count. Elbows are locked, wrists are straight, Bells travel smoothly and crisply. You know. 

This is what my training has looked like these last few weeks:

  • SFG Warm-up
  • Straight and bent-arm kettlebell arm bars with a 12kg These help T-spine mobility, shoulder stability.
  • Get ups with the 28kg (my test weight)
  • Double Kettlebell Clean, Front Squat, Press ladders 1-2-3-4-5 with the 24kgs 1 size over MY test weight. In a week, I start over with the 28kg bells. (I love this program)
  • Pull-ups to supplement upper body strength, in ladders as above
  • Swings or snatches. I swing the 24kg bell 1 arm every morning at around 4.00am at Coogee beach before I do anything else. What a great way to start the day. yes it is still dark but hey….

This gives me 700 extra swings a week without even noticing. These have gotten really easy. So easy in fact, that I get 100 reps in 3 sets. 50-30-20. This week I started adding 1 set with the 28kg bell every session, so by next week, I will be doing 100 swings with the 28kg bell every morning before I do anything else. I will get that done in less than 5 minutes. 10 reps every 30 seconds. I’ll stick with that till I leave for Europe.

Snatches, I am still practicing once or twice a week. I do sets of 8 reps each side on the minute for 5 minutes with the 24kg bell. 1 size above test size (for ME) That’s 80 reps. Not easy, not hard.

Feeling strong and fresh! Looking forward to catching up with Master SFGs Shaun Cairns and Fabio Zonin in Italy next month and meeting people. There are always a heap of cool people to meet and network with at StrongFirst events.  Then back here for Sydney Cert!! Woo Hoooo!!!!


What are you doing to prepare? I would love to hear what your prep looks like or the prep of your students if you are coaching someone. Pop it in the comments below.

Sydney Kettlebell Club is organising a KETTLEBELL SWING & GET UP WORKSHOP.see here.

Saturday 6th of May. 9.00am @ Mojo Strength. Click the link to see more.

You can also

SIGN UP TO THE CERT HERE if you haven’t already. If you don’t feel ready, just remember you have 12 weeks after the cert to get across the line.

If you have any comments or questions, pop them below or email me directlyHERE

If I can help you with your training or you need info regarding workshops and Certs in Sydney, just let me know.

Slow n steady! Start easy, progress slowly.

If you like these posts, please comment, share them and get the word out.

Thanks for reading.

Peter BolsiusKettlebell Instructor Peter Bolsius SFG1

Fix Your Weakness/es

There is no weakness in StrongFirst!

We have about 8 weeks to get it right for Sydney StrongFirst Kettlebell Instructor level 1 Certification.

It’s time to look at where our weakness lies and what we need to work on and “Get Strong!”

Working on My Weakness.

First up, looking at the video, what do you “own” out of those 6 lifts? Which ones do you love doing?

What really needs work? Which ones do you avoid?  Be honest with yourself.

Working on my weakness….. The press!

Shaun Cairns, Master SFG (who will also be assisting Master SFG Fabio Zonin on the Sydney Cert) pointed out I have long levers. This makes it more difficult for me to press than say someone with shorter levers, i.e. I have to press the weight further.

That’s no excuse, it just means I need to work much harder, I have to “Attack” the lift more than someone with say “T-Rex arms”

Pavel said

To Press a lot, you need to press a lot.

So, my program has gone back to one of more pressing. I still hit all the lifts every week, but the press, needs the lions share of the work. The program CT (my coach) gave me is:

Warm up then Get Up Practice

Double Kettlebell Cleans + Double Squat + Double Press in ladders of 1 2 3 4 5 with 24kg (1 bell size up from my testing weight)

Swings or snatches for 10 x 10 EMOM.

On top of that I do 10 sets of 10 x 1 arm swings EMOM in 5 minutes or less. I do that every morning upon rising. That’s an extra 700 swings every week with the 24kg bell.

Am I cert ready? Yeah, I can do the testing any day of the week.  StrongFirst Rack Position

Am I ready for 30 hours of intense instruction and practice? I’m not so sure, I continue to improve all my lifts till “Game Day”

Your Weakness & What to Work On

Let’s have a look at you. Honestly, what are you struggling with? The reason I ask is this:

  • We love to work on what we excel at
  • We tend to avoid the things we struggle with
  • We always do what we are strong at  but…….
  • It’s working on our weakness where we become unstoppable!

Bringing a weakness “up to par” will transfer to other lifts. Weaker muscles will improve and overall output will increase. e.g. Getting stronger in the Get Up will help the press.

So, if you, like me, struggle in say the press, then get pressing! Check the table below, see where you are at and have a cold hard look at what is required.

These requirements are new as of this year. The weights shown will be our testing weights.

2017 Weights

WeightKettlebellSnatch Test
Men Open ClassOver 100kg/221lbs28kg100/5min
Men Open ClassOver 68kg/150lbs and below 100kg/221lbs24kg100/5min
Men Open ClassUp to 68kg/150lbs20kg100/5min
Men Masters(50-64 years old)20kg100/5min
Men Seniors(65+ years old)20kg50/3min
Women Open ClassUp to 59kg/130lbs12kg100/5min
Women Open ClassOver 59kg/130lbs16kg100/5min
Women Masters(50-64 years old)12kg100/5min
Women Seniors(65+ years old)12kg50/3min

I know, you might be saying to yourself  “There’s no way I’m going to be ready” please remember, we have 12 weeks after the StrongFirst Kettlebell Instructor level 1 Certification to get over the line. So, that’s about 20 total weeks as of writing!

How to Fix Weakness

Get onto a qualified StrongFirst Instructor HERE. This is my StrongFirst Profile and you can start your search from there.

Have your coach evaluate your lifts and help you improve them. Your coach will be able to map out a program that will get you “Cert Ready”

You just need to do the work, we can’t do that for you.


If you haven’t signed up yet….GET ON IT!  StrongFirst Kettlebell Instructor level 1 Certification.

Get onto the instructor page HERE and get the help you need. StrongFirst SFG 1 Sydney

Do the work.


If you have any comments or questions, pop them below or email me directlyHERE

If I can help you with your training or you need info regarding workshops and Certs in Sydney, just let me know.

Slow n steady! Start easy, progress slowly.

If you like these posts, please share them, get the word out.

Thanks for reading.

Peter BolsiusKettlebell Instructor Peter Bolsius SFG1


The video above is about swings, not snatches…..why?

Well, first off, the problem of a sore lower back due to incorrect SWING technique is rampant and therefore needs to be addressed before even considerring the snatch. Besides…..

The snatch is a swing that finishes in the overhead position, so you best have a strong swing

We are 9 weeks out  from the StrongFirst Instructor Certification in Sydney. (June 16-18 2017) and I am 8 weeks out from my Cert in Italy. (June 9-11 2017)

My snatch practice has been made up of the following.

  • 10 x 10 1 arm swings every morning upon awakening 24kg bell. 4.00am for me Coogee beach 7 days a week. I get that done in 5 minutes or less. (note I am a “master” athlete so my testing bell is 20kgs)
  • 7+7 x 10 snatches 24kg bell every minute on the minute (EMOM) 7 left + 7 right, rest remainder of minute. I do these twice a week. Wednesday and Saturday. Easy.
  • 10 x 10 2 arm swings 36kg bell EMOM Monday and Friday.

I know, that 100 snatches with 20kg kettlebell in 5 minutes will be easy on game day following this protocol simply because.

  1. I use a bell, 1 size up from my test weight for my snatch practice.
  2. I develop endurance in the hips with the 24kg swings every morning.
  3. I develop strength with the 36kg kettlebell swings.

It’s simple. This whole process has been simple.

Go back through weeks 1 to today. Nothing special, nothing complicated. Just practice and consistency. I started with 32kg 2 arm swings on week 1 after not swinging for months, and they were hard!  Consistency has brought me to easy 32kg 1 arm swings, easy 36kg 2 arm swings. Very easy 24kg 1 arm swings and easy 7 + 7 24kg snatches.   mojo strength

I will build the snatches up to 8 + 8 over the next few weeks. Then I will do some 28kg snatches for 4 + 4. Again, they will be relatively easy.

The whole essence of this entire series is to rock up to the StrongFirst Instructor Certificate in top shape. No injuries, No burn out. Roaring and ready to go. That’s it. If I can do that, mission accomplished. Stick with me for these last weeks.

Need Help?

If you have signed up and need some help with your preparation, get onto a qualified coach. Head on over to the StrongFirst Instructor List HERE.

If you haven’t signed up….WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? Time is ticking!!! Get onto it!!


If you have any comments or questions, pop them below or email me directlyHERE

If I can help you with your training or you need info regarding workshops and Certs in Sydney, just let me know.

Slow n steady! Start easy, progress slowly.

If you like these posts, please share them, get the word out.

Thanks for reading.

Peter Bolsius

Kettlebell Instructor Peter Bolsius SFG1

School of Strength

StrongFirst is a school of strength. Mojo Strength is a school of strength.

I am a student of strength.

I am switching places from Coach to Student and will be learning for 8 hours this Sunday at the workshop. This is NOT the “Cert” This is the STRONGFIRST  WORKSHOP   This will be my 6th workshop! Everytime I do this workshop as a student or a coach, I learn more or consolidate. There is always that “Ahaa!” moment.

What do we do at this workshop?

4 Exercises: Swing, Goblet Squat, Get Up and Press. They will be pulled apart and re-built over 8 hours. This is In-Depth Coaching from the industry’s best.

It’s what StrongFirst Stands for: Quality!


Search for a coach, sign up for a workshop. Always strive to improve. never be complacent. – Peter Bolsius SFG1

Rite of Passage:

CT, my coach, hasn’t been with me while I practiced these last few times. Mmmmmm was that a mistake?  I may have pushed the envelope a little.

As you know, I’ve been following my version of ‘Rite of Passage” by Pavel, We’ve adjusted it to what we want to achieve. i.e. Arrive strong and fit for the StrongFirst Instructor’s Certificate in June

I warm-up with Get ups. I do:  (each side) 1 x naked (no weight) 1 x 12kg, 1 x 16kg, 1 x 20kg, 1 x 24kg, and finish with 1 x Kettlebell Get up28kg ea. side. (that’s my re-cert weight) I’ll stick with that till 28 is so easy, I can just step up to the 32kg. (remember, 16 weeks to go.) I hit 1 arm clean and presses with the 24kg + pull-ups after that.

Last week I started with: Ladders of 1-2-3 x 5. Easy. Then, ladders of 1-2-3-4 x 5 still easy. Monday, I felt strong and hit ladders of 1-2-3-4-5 x 5! That may have been a mistake. 33% increase on the previous practice session. That’s a 150 total C+Ps and 75 Pull-ups if my math serves me well. Too much too soon. In hindsight, I should have added 1 or 2 sets of 5 then another couple till I hit all 5 sets. I was a bit sore I must say. “Ache…y” would be a better word. (Is that a word?) So, what to do? I want to be fresh for the workshop on Sunday.

Yesterday (Wednesday) I did,

  • C+P & Pull-up ladders going back to 1-2-3 x 5 protocol (60 total C+P 30 total Pull-ups)
  • Swings 24kg, 1 arm: 5 + 5 x 10 EMOM. That was easy.
  • Then, I jumped in with a group at the gym I was coaching and did 15 sets x 10 of 2 arm swings with a 28kg (easy) and push-ups, bear crawls, goblet squats etc. Not hard. Got my heart rate up again and more blood running around the body. Friday will be something similar.

Nice n Easy. Today, I feel strong!!

Monday, after the workshop, I’ll repeat that again. That will put me back into the cycle.

The cycle will look like this:

Monday: Ladders 1-2-3 x 5, Wednesday ladders 1-2-3-4 x 5, Friday, ladders 1-2-3-4-5 x 5 with swings or snatches for 10 minutes EMOM (Every Minute On the Minute) and the Get-ups as warm-up.

I’ll repeat that for the next few weeks. Working on form and increasing my swing and snatch numbers. i.e. 5 reps to 6 reps each side, then 7 reps etc.

On my “Off days” 2 arm swings 10 x 10 EMOM with 36kg or 40kg, Get-up practice as above, and Goblet squats or  1 arm squats, sets of 5. Throw in 10-15 minutes of “Cook Carries Video HERE.”  That’s plenty. Again, easy practice.

THE WORKSHOP:StrongFirst Instructor Certificate

Join me and see what it is about.

What is this Workshop? See HERE 

SIGN UP for the Workshop HERE $299 AU.  Last Chance!  8 hours of world class coaching.


If you have any comments or questions, pop them below or email me directly HERE

If I can help you with your training or you need info regarding workshops and Certs, just let me know.

Slow n steady! Start easy, progress slowly.

If you like these posts, please share them, get the word out.

Thanks for reading.

Peter Bolsius SFG1

Owner & Founder Mojo Strength Sydney


surprised bubThe feeling you get when you sign up to the StrongFirst Instructor Cert.!


Pushing that button changes everything!

It is amazing how everything just changes as soon as you sign up. I can’t describe it. I was talking to my good friend and fellow SFG instructor Garry Robinson the other day about this. We both had exactly the same reaction when we signed up.

FAAAAAR OUT!….IT’S ON! No Turning Back!

It gives you purpose, eliminates the excuses! It’s ON! You know what needs to be done. You do it.

Your training is deliberate, it has purpose.

If you are serious about doing the cert….change it from talk to walk!

Sign up as early as possible to get that “IT’S ON!” feeling. Kettlebell rack

I can’t think of another moment in time when I had so much purpose to my training.