7 Ingredients to Becoming a Master of Sport

Like many other Kettlebell Sport lifters, Paul White trains alone in his garage. Unlike many other lifters, however, Paul was able to coach himself to multiple Master of Sport titles with the 32kg - which is no easy feat WITH a coach! I asked Paul to share some insight on how to effectively self-coach in Kettlebell Sport. Read on to learn about his philosophy on training.

Ingredients for Success in Kettlebell Sport Lifting by Paul White

1. Mentality.

To process information, to tell yourself the truth, to take a step backwards in order to find a better outcome. Be an artist not a rep counter.

2. Hand Eye Coordination.

Will help you see and process the efficiency in each movement with pin-point accuracy that much faster.

3. Emotionless.

Lifting comes down to math and science. Make it emotionless then you will lift emotionless. You can cry afterwards. When in the midst of battle your hours of training will automatically kick-in, whether you’re happy or sad. Positivity shouldn’t come in to it.

4. Listen to the Right People.

Taking criticism/feedback, looking at the facts and trialing the points given. Anyone who has dealt with me has felt the force of my honesty. This is Kettlebell Sport and every rep tells me a story. Don’t be fooled by keyboard warriors with all the answers but without the results to back them up.

5. Mentor & Base Coach.

You have to learn the base technique from someone with applied accomplishments, in my opinion. That person doesn’t have to write you spreadsheets every week- over the years they just guide you in the right direction. They can voice their thoughts if they see something they don’t like and can keep your head in check. I’ve had an online coach before, but never achieved the results I wanted. I feel online coaching can’t truly get the best out of you. There are so many other variables in your daily life that come into play. However, learning the proper methods and technical aspects initially is a must.  Once the basics are understood and practiced, applying them to your body's unique needs will bring results.

6. Basics.

I’m not talking about Kettlebell Sport. I’m talking about basic movement & alignment. Knowing the basics of weightlifting and being able to properly execute them is key. I see so many people compete in Kettlebell Sport yet they don’t even know basic push ‘n’ pull principles. They try to force some of the most complicated weightlifting movements there are – Jerk/Snatch & Long Cycle - without having a background in lifting. There is a basic template for everything but it’s not one size fits all. Know yourself.

7. Perspectives.

Feel/Record/Mirror – Being able to FEEL your movement (proprioception) is a skill you must possess to be a successful lifter.  Recording your performance and making notes is also key. Combining proprioception, visual cues, and notes for improvement are the most time consuming aspects of self-coaching but also the most important. Once you can feel each precise movement and know what it looks like then progress can begin. I only use a mirror about 5% of the time for reminders but otherwise it can be a distraction and take your mind off the real task.


Remember pure basics done to perfection makes everything else easier to adapt to.

Every level has a different adaption phase that you must conform to. I can’t use my Master of Sport technique to hit MSIC numbers! If that was the case I’d be there. There is always an easier way with perfection in technique. This is where I see people try and push through but the results don’t follow. I see people using 32's when they shouldn’t be, step back and work the technique/volume. Perfect the technique then add the work load. Appropriate technique for each level will naturally bring the results you desire. Take the necessary steps back in order to move forward.

“Take 2 steps back and 1 step forward in this sport” - Fedor Fuglev, Mentor and Friend