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Bullet Proofing the Body with Bodyweight & Kettlebell Lifts

In the midst of all the excitement talking about the launch of my Kettlebell Instructor Cert, I’ve almost forgotten to promote the workshop I’ll be teaching down at Dolan Fitness in Tullamore in a little over a week.

On June 2nd, I’ll be at Kieran’s gym teaching what we’ve titled “Creating the Complete Athlete with Bodyweight and Kettlebell Training”

That’s a pretty fancy title.

But it actually reflects the training that is most often overlooked by many in the strength and conditioning world.

An athlete needs to be strong, this is an irrefutable fact. And there is no better tool for developing maximal strength than with the barbell. If a training program doesn’t revolve around Squats, Deadlifts, a big Press and an olympic variation, then perhaps you should re-evaluate your training program.

correct swing technique loading the posterior chain and activating the stretch reflex

correct swing technique loading the posterior chain and activating the stretch reflex

But those lifts all one dimensional, they challenge you in a single plane and are all performed standing still.

Get out of the gym and into the real world and it all changes, you become challenged from every conceivable angle, you have to generate force from weird positions for unknown amounts of time and an unknown number of repetitions. Just how many tackles will you make in that rugby match with how much of a rest in between them? How many kicks will you throw in the ring? At what point during that clinch stalemate will you get to explode into a flurry of action to gain the upper hand?

These are all questions an athletic training program needs to be prepared to answer.

This is why my athletes training programs have a heavy emphasis on bodyweight training and kettlebell lifts.

I’m no fan of the phrase “functional training” I believe it’s lost all meaning since it entered the mainstream fitness world. But I do believe that there are few better ways to achieve the ability to develop fitness in a manner that can be applied to your sport than with the use of bodyweight and kettlebells.

Develop power and power endurance with bodyweight training

Develop power and power endurance with explosive bodyweight training

The reasons?

Well, training with your bodyweight requires at the most basic level, a high degree of physical awareness, proprioception, balance and core strength. Every exercise you do will involve moving a large portion of yourself through space. You can train motions that require rapid changes in direction, changes in height, locomotive patterns and movements that replicate the force vectors of your sport.

Full body strength and coordination focused around the core

Full body strength and coordination focused around the core

Add a kettle, an implement that is used in repetitive swinging type lifts that utilise the stretch reflex and the elastic nature of the fascial network and you start to bullet proof a body.

Between the two methodologies and a principle based training program, I haven’t found any better way to get my athletes frighteningly strong but with the mobility and endurance to match that strength and the structural integrity to shrug off injury.

Be sure to drop an email either to me on or Kieran on

The day will be practical in nature, so bring some water as well as a notepad, pen and an open mind.

See you there


Dave Hedges

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