If I have been asked this once, I have been asked it a hundred times: What size kettlebell should I use? If I had my druthers, I would recommend that everyone who uses kettlebells purchase three of them right out of the gate - a pair of smaller kettlebells and one large kettlebell that might be a little too heavy at the moment of purchase.

With this set-up, you will be able to accomplish virtually any goal you may have. For example, a female who has never lifted a weight in her life should buy a pair of 6 kg/13 lb kettlebells and one that is 12 kg/26 lbs. However, having said that, I realize that the kettlebell is a brave new frontier for many people regardless of their level of fitness experience. Choosing the right one depends on what your goal(s) is(are). Your choice may be different based on whether the kettlebell will be the #1 fitness tool for a home workout program or a tool for metabolic fat-loss workouts instead. It will also be different if you have never exercised vs. having consistently done strength training your whole life. So you'll need to start by conducting an honest assessment of what your current capabilities are.

Note: Those who have never exercised will generally under-estimate and those with significant experience will often over-estimate their ability. red_kettlebellOk, let's look at some specific recommendations. I'm assuming that you are going to use the kettlebell as the dominate tool in your workout and that initially you will only be purchasing one kettlebell. I start with recommendations for advanced users and work down to beginners.

1. Intermediate Lifter - Has worked out consistently with weights 3x/wk for at least the last two years and knows how to perform "big lifts" such as the squat, deadlift, press, etc.... Recommended kettlebell size: Men - 20 kg/44 lbs Women - 12 kg/26 lbs 2. Beginner Lifter - Has consistently done resistance training at least 2x/wk for less than one year and has tried the "big lifts" but is not sure if he/she is using the correct technique. Recommended kettlebell size: Men - 16 kg/35 lbs Women - 8 kg/17 lbs 3. Straight-off-the-street Lifter - Has not touched a weight in more than three years and can't remember what a "big lift" is or has never lifted a weight and never heard of a "big lift".

His/her "exercise program" has consisted of nothing more than walking. Recommended kettlebell size: Men - 12 kg/26 lbs Women - 6 kg/13 lbs These are my base recommendations for someone who is only going to purchase one kettlebell. And believe it or not one kettlebell used consistently will automatically put you on the path to fitness success. If you follow this simple selection chart, you will not only enjoy your first kettlebell experience but also get the most out if it whether your goal is fat-loss, strength, muscle building, or just plain getting healthy.