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  1. #91
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    Well, I don't plan on entering any kettlebell competitions. While I'd like to have a bell made of steel instead of cast iron, and with those flat surfaces next to the handle, at this point, I think I'm leaning towards the rogue kilo just because it's made in the US and seems to be of fairly high quality. I like the fatter handle for improving grip, but since I'm a kettlebell newb, I have no idea if that's going to become detrimental for certain exercises later on. Also, I like the idea of adding the kettlebell budy to jump to 28kg, so if I actually do stick with this and like it, I'd probably only have to purchase the kettlebell buddy and a 32kg bell. Thanks for your insight, KBKB.
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  2. #92
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    Originally Posted by KBKB View Post

    KBKB, The finish on your kettle bell looks better than the ones on the manufacturers website. ...in particular, the seamless casting. In the manufacturer's photo some of them don't look as good. Do you think it's hit or miss?

    I'm skeptical of kettlebells and don't have any exerience with them... but I thought it might be fun to try... and I'll probably need to go to Madison (where LifelineUSA is located) in the next few weeks.

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  3. #93
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    Originally Posted by morebarbell View Post
    KBKB, The finish on your kettle bell looks better than the ones on the manufacturers website. ...in particular, the seamless casting. In the manufacturer's photo some of them don't look as good. Do you think it's hit or miss?

    I'm skeptical of kettlebells and don't have any exerience with them... but I thought it might be fun to try... and I'll probably need to go to Madison (where LifelineUSA is located) in the next few weeks.
    I noticed a seam on one of my Lifeline bells while doing Turkish Get Ups recently. It's on the side of the bell, so it's not a problem. Once I noticed it, I checked the handle to see if it extended up to the handle, but it does not. Or if it did, they cleaned it up before painting.

    I think the bells in Lifeline's photo look okay. There are some minor surface imperfections and I think I see some evidence of seams at the tops of a few of the bells, but this should not be a problem since that part of the bell won't make contact with your body. Don't know if it's the lighting or if they somehow shined them up, but the bells in the photo look a lot shinier than the ones I have. The paint on mine are flat black. The ones in their promotional photo look almost glossy.

    Another possibility... I think I once read somewhere that their early bells were made somewhere else, but that they switched the manufacturing to the USA. It's possible that the bells you see in the photo were some of those early kettlebells. Just guessing, and I'm not even certain that what I read was true.

    If you're buying them in person, you have the advantage of being able to pick out some of the better looking ones.

    Edit: Looking again at the the photo of my bell that you quoted, I think I can see where the seam was on both the handle and the side of the bell. It's very slight and I've never noticed anything when using it. Here it is again:

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  4. #94
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    Thank you, KBKB. I'm on spread but owe you my measly reps... probably more than once. You can place the order online for pick up but I'm not sure how it works. I hope I'll be able to pick and choose. If they have a show room, I'll take some photos. I've been procrastinating heading down to Madison so I'm not sure when it will happen but I have a bunch of stuff in storage there so it's going to happen sometime.
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  5. #95
    Registered User KBKB's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by morebarbell View Post
    Thank you, KBKB. I'm on spread but owe you my measly reps... probably more than once. You can place the order online for pick up but I'm not sure how it works. I hope I'll be able to pick and choose. If they have a show room, I'll take some photos. I've been procrastinating heading down to Madison so I'm not sure when it will happen but I have a bunch of stuff in storage there so it's going to happen sometime.
    I usually place online orders, but I've called them before when I've had questions. They're competent and pleasant to talk to. (Lifeline used to sell 44kg kettlebells. I called them once to see if they had any old stock I could buy - unfortunately they didn't. I think I talked to them one other time when their online ordering system wasn't working properly.)

    I'd be interested in seeing showroom photos if they have one.

    Have you figured out what size (or sizes) of kettlebell you want?
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  6. #96
    Registered User morebarbell's Avatar
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    I was thinking about one or two at 16kg but I haven't decided. I'm not sure if it's something that I'd use regularly and there are other things I could use the money towards. It seems like something that I want pops up on Craigslist fairly regularly. Curiously, I haven't seen any Lifeline USA kettle bells on CL even though the company is located in the area.
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  7. #97
    Registered User KBKB's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by morebarbell View Post
    I was thinking about one or two at 16kg but I haven't decided. I'm not sure if it's something that I'd use regularly and there are other things I could use the money towards. It seems like something that I want pops up on Craigslist fairly regularly. Curiously, I haven't seen any Lifeline USA kettle bells on CL even though the company is located in the area.
    YMMV, but here are my current preferences...

    Of all the kettlebells I own, I use 20kg Lifeline bells the most frequently, possibly as much as 80% of the time. E.g. I did a short workout on Monday night and used a single 20kg bell exclusively. I did three TGUs on each side and then a complex consisting of a right handed snatch followed five swings, with 2.5 swings per hand, a left handed snatch, five more swings, transitioning back to the right hand. I repeated that (without rest) ten times giving me 100 swings and 20 snatches. After a rest, I did twenty more snatches. I could possibly use a heavier bell for this workout, but I'd have to break it up to have more rests. I notice a big difference between snatching a 20kg vs a 24kg bell, especially when bringing the bell down.

    After that, I probably use 24kg and 28kg bells nearly equally as much, followed by the 32.

    I also have 8kg, 12kg, and 16kg bells, but they don't get used unless I'm trying something new. I also have 36kg and 40kg bells. I occasionally do heavy swings, push presses, kettlebell front squats, and TGUs with them.
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  8. #98
    Registered User morebarbell's Avatar
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    Thank you, KBKB. I was under the impression that 16 was sort of a standard. I'll keep that in mind and look into trying out a few different sizes.
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  9. #99
    Registered User KBKB's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by morebarbell View Post
    Thank you, KBKB. I was under the impression that 16 was sort of a standard. I'll keep that in mind and look into trying out a few different sizes.
    It is often the suggested starting weight for men. 16kg is also roughly one pood which is how the Russians measure kettlebell weights.

    Here's a video which discusses weight selection:

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  10. #100
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    Thanks for the video.
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  11. #101
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    An issue raised in another thread is the amount of space available on the handle for doing two-handed swings. This can especially be a problem for those with large hands. I don't think that I have exceptionally large hands - when I buy gloves, I get either an L or an XL with the XLs usually fitting me better. Even so, I've noticed that I have trouble getting both hands comfortably on most fixed-weight kettlebells. This is definitely not the case with the Ironmaster Kettlebell. I have room to spare on the Ironmaster bell. Plus I find the handle more ergonomic for doing two handed swings. The gently curved shape of the handle allows you to position your both hands so that a neutral wrist position may be maintaned. As noted elsewhere in this thread though, the shape is a drawback when doing one-handed work.

    Below are some photos showing hand positions for several kettlebells that I own, including the Ironmaster Kettlebell Handle at the end. I show both a two-handed grip and the position that I use for gripping the bell for most one-handed lifts, including snatches and cleans. Note that my thumb and forefinger are positioned to be in the corner of the handle for the conventional bells. When using the Ironmaster bell, I grip the handle in the center since it doesn't have a suitable corner. Gripping the Ironmaster bell in the center also tends to cause the flat part of the bell to rest against the forearm when in the rack position. If you try to grab it in an offset position, you'll end up with the relatively sharp corner against your forearm.

    20kg Lifeline USA Kettlebell:



    28kg MDUSA V2 Pro Series Competition Kettlebell:



    36kg Lifeline USA Kettlebell:



    Ironmaster Kettlebell:

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  12. #102
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    Any thoughts on a great beginners workout routine from Youtube? I purchased the Ironmaster Kettlebell but find the workout they have to be a little cheesy.
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  13. #103
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    This will probably be my next purchase when they get more in stock. Thanks for the review!
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  14. #104
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    Originally Posted by GiveMeAdvice View Post
    Any thoughts on a great beginners workout routine from Youtube? I purchased the Ironmaster Kettlebell but find the workout they have to be a little cheesy.
    My kettlebell workout routines vary. Some of my workouts consist of nothing but swings. If you're not good at doing swings yet, I suggest you focus on swings for a while. You may find that just practicing swings alone to be a pretty good workout.

    Once you get good at doing swings, progress on to the clean. The kettlebell clean puts the bell in what's known as "rack position". With the bell in rack position, you'll be able to do some overhead work such as the press and push press. You'll also be able to do movements for the legs such as squats and lunges.

    There is a complicated sequence of movements known as the Turkish Get Up (TGU). When you do a Turkish Get Up, you start out lying flat on your back with the kettlebell beside you. At the top of the sequence, you'll be standing up with your kettlebell held above you. You then reverse the sequence of moves until you're back on the floor with the kettlebell beside you. The Turkish Get Up is a very good exercise. There have been (and still are) times when I do just the Turkish Get Up, where I work on form.

    Another skill movement is the snatch. The snatch is somewhat like a swing, except that instead of stopping the bell at chest level, the bell continues upward until it's locked out overhead. It's different from a clean and press in that the bell is brought all the way overhead in one smooth motion.

    One of my workouts - which is definitely not a beginner workout, is to do ten one arm swings, do a transition swing to the other arm, and then do ten more swings with the other arm. This entire sequence of 21 swings will take about 35 seconds. Immediately following the last swing, I do a snatch, followed by a press. I then "rest" with the bell overhead until my timer beeps at the 45 second mark. At that time, I reverse the snatch and start the swings over again working over to the other side. I'll do ten rounds total. It only takes seven and a half minutes, but I'm usually pretty tired at the end. If I have anything left after a rest, I'll do sets of swings for the rest of the workout.

    Another of my workouts is to warm up with a set of forty one-arm swings (twenty with each hand). I then do nine and a half snatches ending with the kettlebell at the top. Then, from the top, I'll do the down part of a Turkish Get Up to the ground and then back up again. (I'm not sure if these have some other name, but I call them Turkish Get Ups from the top.) Once I'm back up at the top again, I'll do the downward portion of the snatch (for ten snatches total), a swing to change hands, and then do 9.5 snatches followed by another TGU from the top. I usually do five rounds of these, moving up in weight after every two rounds. (Two rounds at 20kg; two rounds at 24kg; one round at 28kg - I'll sometimes decrease the number of snatches when I move up to 28kg.) At this point, I switch to TGUs from the ground with heavier weight (32kg and 36kg). I'll finish up my workout with a bunch of swings or snatches or a combination of the two.

    I have another workout where I'll focus on kettlebell squats and presses. Sometimes I combine them in a movement known as a thruster, which is simply a squat followed by a push press. I'll do sets of pull ups in between.

    Marianne Kane has a youtube channel that I follow to get ideas for workouts but, truth be told, I don't think I've ever done one of her workouts exactly as she does them.

    Here is one of Marianne's workouts showing TGUs and swings. This is an atypical workout for her; she usually has several more (different) exercises incorporated into each workout. She also does very few workouts which incorporate TGUs and snatches.



    Here is one of her beginner workouts which have more exercises. She has a long winded tutorial on the exercises too.



    If you're still learning how to do the kettlebell swing, take a look at these videos. I suggest watching each of them, though perhaps not all at once. The kettlebell swing seems easy, but there are some subtleties that must be understood in order to do it correctly.











    Last edited by KBKB; 05-28-2013 at 12:25 PM. Reason: Fix video embed.
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  15. #105
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    Originally Posted by KBKB View Post
    There is a complicated sequence of movements known as the Turkish Get Up (TGU). When you do a Turkish Get Up, you start out lying flat on your back with the kettlebell beside you. At the top of the sequence, you'll be standing up with your kettlebell held above you. You then reverse the sequence of moves until you're back on the floor with the kettlebell beside you. The Turkish Get Up is a very good exercise. There have been (and still are) times when I do just the Turkish Get Up, where I work on form.
    Here are some good instructional videos for the Turkish Get Up:









    Gray Cook and Brett Jones have a DVD that they sell called Kettlebells From the Ground Up. This is the video - the DVD - that I used to learn the TGU. It's a very good video, but it's kind of expensive. Here's a trailer for the DVD from youtube:



    Gray Cook used to have a pretty good youtube video showing the Turkish Get Up. It's been taken down though; perhaps its presence was eating into their DVD sales. If you only watch one of these videos, look at the very first one that I posted above by Neghar Fonooni. She does an excellent job of explaining the movement.
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  16. #106
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    so kbkb it appears from the comments you went away from the ironmasters and got more individual sized kettlebells. do you still use the ironmasters or did you sell them? at some point I want some kettlebells. someday when I can afford them. I will by the end of this year heh
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    Registered User KBKB's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by matrix563 View Post
    so kbkb it appears from the comments you went away from the ironmasters and got more individual sized kettlebells. do you still use the ironmasters or did you sell them?
    I still have the Ironmaster kettlebell, but I rarely use it. (The times I do use it usually involve trying something out before posting to this thread...)

    The handle shape and size make it great for two-handed swings. I could use it if I did two-handed swings, but these days, I've just been doing double bell swings instead, usually with two 20kg bells or two 24kg bells. The pair of 20kg bells is about eight pounds heaver than I can make my Ironmaster bell.

    I could sell it, but I hate selling things. I'll probably try to (permanently) loan it to someone who'll use it.
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    Registered User China505's Avatar
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    Cool thread and awesome pics. Those lifelines look really nice, That adjustable one is something I wouldnt bother with. All mine are from Dragon Door, but the new monkey head one from onnit might be my next.
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    Originally Posted by China505 View Post
    All mine are from Dragon Door, but the new monkey head one from onnit might be my next.
    I hadn't heard of Onnit before, but a quick search turned up a link to the monkey head (primal) kettlebells. If you get one, please post a review of it.

    There are also some skull bells which are made in the USA.

    My next kettlebell is going to be a 24kg VF Precision Kettlebell. I have one on order. They were supposed to ship in mid-April; the ship date has changed to the end of June.

    I toy with the idea, every now and then, of getting a heavy (100+ lb) kettlebell. But I won't do it until I'm strong enough for it. I did a TGU on each side using a 40kg bell, which is the heaviest I have. It went pretty well on the right side, but I almost lost control of the bell during the "sit up" portion of the TGU while doing the left side. I have a Kettlebell Buddy which I can attach to the 40kg bell bringing the total weight up to 44kg, or about 97lbs. I won't get a heavier bell until I can do 44kg TGUs really well.
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    Registered User BreakAes's Avatar
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    I'm looking for one of these Ironmaster Kettlebells, and I'd like to get it used if possible. I just got a set of 80 pound Ironmaster dumbbells for $200 through Craigslist. I live in Los Gatos, California, and Kevin let me know that shipping is expensive, so maybe it wouldn't make sense to buy his.

    Any weightlifting equipment classifieds (other than CL) you guys know of that I should check out? Thanks!
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    Originally Posted by BreakAes View Post
    I'm looking for one of these Ironmaster Kettlebells, and I'd like to get it used if possible. I just got a set of 80 pound Ironmaster dumbbells for $200 through Craigslist. I live in Los Gatos, California, and Kevin let me know that shipping is expensive, so maybe it wouldn't make sense to buy his.

    Any weightlifting equipment classifieds (other than CL) you guys know of that I should check out? Thanks!
    I got lucky and found a pair of of the 57.5 lb handle + weight kits on Amazon used at a great price.
    I haven't seen hardly any used IronMaster equipment since then at all, and I check pretty frequently.
    Last time I saw something, it was an IronMaster bench with some attachments, and it was close to new price anyway.
    These are high demand items, and while they are very popular it doesn't seem like there is a huge used market for them.
    Typically, people only sell when they have no other option due to moving, etc.
    The price used isn't often reduced all that much to risk not picking up new with a warranty from the manufacturer.

    I'd keep an eye peeled on Craigslist, Ebay, and Amazon (or just do a Google search periodically, you may find something on Kijii or whatever that site is called) but don't hold your breath.
    Since you already got an amazing deal for the DBs + plenty of weights and the larger extension pins, I'd just buy the KB handle(s) from IronMaster direct for $99+shipping (which should be $19)
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    Originally Posted by BreakAes View Post
    I'm looking for one of these Ironmaster Kettlebells, and I'd like to get it used if possible. I just got a set of 80 pound Ironmaster dumbbells for $200 through Craigslist. I live in Los Gatos, California, and Kevin let me know that shipping is expensive, so maybe it wouldn't make sense to buy his.
    I've received several PMs about selling my IM kettlebell. Matrix is first in line - we're still discussing it, off and on. I'm trying to encourage him to buy real kettlebells as I think he'll be happier with them in the long run.

    If you buy from Ironmaster, their shipping is pretty reasonable. Ironmaster's packaging is impeccable. The kettlebell handle is shipped in a styrofoam shell molded to fit the kettlebell handle. On top of that, they double box it. The kettlebell handle arrived in pristine condition with no dings or scrapes from shipping. Ironmaster also does an excellent job at packaging the plates. The plates, too, are doubled boxed. Thin sheets of something styrofoamy separate each plate to prevent damage to the paint during shipping.

    Many of the other (non-Ironmaster) kettlebells that I've had shipped to me have sustained some kind of shipping related damage. Most of the damage is minor and is hardly noticeable. In a few cases, I've done some touch-up work with spray paint.

    If I sell my IM bell, I'll either sell it to someone local who can pick it up or I'll look for some packaging to adapt so that I can hopefully ship the bell with minimal damage. While it's true that I'm not using it much, I'm also not all that eager to sell it because, as I said earlier, I hate selling things.
    Last edited by KBKB; 07-17-2013 at 01:58 PM.
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    Originally Posted by BreakAes View Post
    Any weightlifting equipment classifieds (other than CL) you guys know of that I should check out? Thanks!
    See this thread from earlier today:

    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=155535993

    They're selling competition style kettlebells at half off with free shipping.
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  24. #114
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    Originally Posted by KBKB View Post
    I've received several PMs about selling my IM kettlebell. Matrix is first in line - we're still discussing it, off and on. I'm trying to encourage him to buy real kettlebells as I think he'll be happier with them in the long run.

    If you buy from Ironmaster, their shipping is pretty reasonable. Ironmaster's packaging is impeccable. The kettlebell handle is shipped in a styrofoam shell molded to fit the kettlebell handle. On top of that, they double box it. The kettlebell handle arrived in pristine condition with no dings or scrapes from shipping. Ironmaster also does an excellent job at packaging the plates. The plates, too, are doubled boxed. Thin sheets of something styrofoamy separate each plate to prevent damage to the paint during shipping.

    Many of the other (non-Ironmaster) kettlebells that I've had shipped to me have sustained some kind of shipping related damage. Most of the damage is minor and is hardly noticeable. In a few cases, I've done some touch-up work with spray paint.

    If I sell my IM bell, I'll either sell it to someone local who can pick it up or I'll look for some packaging to adapt so that I can hopefully ship the bell with minimal damage. While it's true that I'm not using it much, I'm also not all that eager to sell it because, as I said earlier, I hate selling things.
    These just went off of backorder and I received mine. If you'd like, I'm happy to send you my packing material. Just send me a pm so I know to save it.
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    Originally Posted by jtaliani View Post
    These just went off of backorder and I received mine. If you'd like, I'm happy to send you my packing material. Just send me a pm so I know to save it.
    PM sent. Thanks!
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    Hey Kevin, now that you have the packaging material, let me know if you want to sell it to me, or if the other buyer is going to take it. If I'm not going to get it from you, it looks best for me to get it through Ironmaster or one of their retailers, thanks!
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    I also just bought the IM kettlebell if you need additional packaging! Thanks for this thread, my wife really wants to get into some of the kettlebell workouts and this helped tremendously. Much thanks!
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    Originally Posted by BreakAes View Post
    Hey Kevin, now that you have the packaging material, let me know if you want to sell it to me, or if the other buyer is going to take it. If I'm not going to get it from you, it looks best for me to get it through Ironmaster or one of their retailers, thanks!
    Matrix still wants it...

    Originally Posted by MNRider008 View Post
    I also just bought the IM kettlebell if you need additional packaging!
    Thanks! I think I'm set; I'll PM you if it does turn out that I need it.

    Thanks for this thread, my wife really wants to get into some of the kettlebell workouts and this helped tremendously. Much thanks!
    You're welcome!

    As I've mentioned before, the Ironmaster kettlebell is excellent for swings, especially two-handed swings. I've been recommending that folks getting into kettlebells learn to do cleans and snatches using a conventional (round) kettlebell. In my opinion, the square shape of the Ironmaster bell as well as the shape of the handle are not conducive to learning how to do cleans and snatches correctly. While it is possible to do these movements with the Ironmaster bell, you'll have to unlearn a few things should you decide to start using round kettlebells with correctly shaped handles. Once you get used to using round kettlebells, the squarish Ironmaster bell will feel just plain awkward and you'll never want to use it for these movements ever again.

    That said, the Ironmaster kettlebell is an excellent tool for learning the swing. Once you use it for a while doing swings, adjusting the weight up or down as necessary, you'll have a pretty good idea about the weight you should get for your first fixed weight kettlebell.
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    Originally Posted by KBKB View Post
    You're welcome!

    As I've mentioned before, the Ironmaster kettlebell is excellent for swings, especially two-handed swings. I've been recommending that folks getting into kettlebells learn to do cleans and snatches using a conventional (round) kettlebell. In my opinion, the square shape of the Ironmaster bell as well as the shape of the handle are not conducive to learning how to do cleans and snatches correctly. While it is possible to do these movements with the Ironmaster bell, you'll have to unlearn a few things should you decide to start using round kettlebells with correctly shaped handles. Once you get used to using round kettlebells, the squarish Ironmaster bell will feel just plain awkward and you'll never want to use it for these movements ever again.

    That said, the Ironmaster kettlebell is an excellent tool for learning the swing. Once you use it for a while doing swings, adjusting the weight up or down as necessary, you'll have a pretty good idea about the weight you should get for your first fixed weight kettlebell.
    I appreciate the feedback and likely will follow your lead. I think I am in a similar boat when you started and the need for an adjustable kettlebell just seems to make more sense when developing a routine. Once that routine is defined it makes it much easier to determine specific weights for fixed weight kettlebells.
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  30. #120
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    KB makes a good point about snatches. They can be done, but if you are doing them for efficiency and higher reps, you'll want to be able to rack them with optimal efficiency which means "inserting" your hand into the handle at an angle which on the IM KBs, would line your wrist up with one of the edges of the squarish shape.

    Check out this video starting at 1:21 to get the idea:


    Luckily for me, I don't snatch. I swing, and I clean, and I press. These are excellent for all of these movements. Considering the price and space a whole set of KBs can cost, they are an excellent solution which are very well made.

    On a side note, KB...what the the highest weight that you snatch?
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