Section 3: Events

3.1 Overview

StrongFirst presents three modalities:

Kettlebell: Our world-renowned kettlebell curriculum.
Bodyweight: Presents Pavel’s bodyweight principles.
Barbell: Our barbell program designed by Pavel and Chief SFL.

And two event types for each modality:

Workshops are a 4 hours of of instruction—perfect for beginners or for those ready to get serious about strength, but not quite ready for the intensity of a Certification. No testing is performed.

Certifications are 2-3 days long and will prepare you to be able to teach others these methods. Strength and technique are tested, and to an extremely high standard.

3.2 Workshops

Kettlebell: 101 201 301
Bodyweight: 101 201 301
Barbell: 101 201 301
Sample all 3: Foundations

Continuing Education Credits (CECs)
The only approved CEUs is our 1-Day Courses with NASM (0.8 hours). Courses have been recently discontinued.

  • For our Workshop, no CEUs are approved at this time.
  • The other certifying organizations will need to be contacted directly for specific CEU amounts, if any apply.
  • ACE usually accepts by petition, and NSCA will accept the contact hours (more below) as a Category A non-approved provider activity. A petition document is to be requested from the certifying organization to complete per their requirements. For pecific questions, please reach out to DOE, Brett Jones: brett.jones@strongfirst.com.
  • Most organizations will not approve (as an approved provider) competing certifications.  However, we are working with the NSCA to approve the first two days of the SFG level 1 as a workshop (since the certification and testing doesn’t happen until the third day) for 16 contact hours.  And we are working with NASM in a similar fashion.

3.3 Certifications

Certifications are 2-3 days long, and will prepare instructor candidates to be able to teach others these methods. Strength and technique are tested, and to an extremely high standard.

SFG Kettlebell Instructor Certification

StrongFirst’s kettlebell curriculum and training methodology has been developed and refined by Founder and Chairman, Pavel Tsatsouline, for well over a decade. The SFG is our flagship program.

The Certifications (level I and II) have the highest standards in the industry, and the SFG is the most sought-after kettlebell instructor credential.

There are 12 Certified Master Instructors in the world who have been carefully selected to deliver the SFG kettlebell instruction.

At the SFG I, instructor candidates learn our principle-based kettlebell system and the proper way to use kettlebells and teach kettlebells to others.

Duration: 3 days of hands-on instruction.

Contact Hours: 22 hours of training and instruction.

Tiered Pricing:
$1195: Advance.
$1395: Early.
$1595: Full.
$1695: Late.

Certification Validity: The SFG Instructor credential is good for two years.

Certification Requirements: Technique skills & performance test—details here.

Testing Guidelines: If an Instructor candidate fails half or fewer of the requirements, a 3-month extension will be given to retest with a Master SFG, Senior SFG, or SFG Team Leader via video submission or in-person. The SFG I Instructor certificate will not be issued until a pass is completed on all tests.  If all or more than half of the requirements are not passed over the weekend, the candidate will need to attend the Certification again. A Certificate of Attendance is offered for those who attend without testing.

Written Test: Available if required for CEUs.
Email Headquarters at admin@strongfirst.com with the student’s contact details who is requesting the test, and HQ will email the student with testing information. Student has three (3) weeks to complete with three (3) attempts to pass. The written test is not available in every language.

Recertification: Must be registered prior to current certificate’s expiration for the following options:

  • Attend the SFG Level II Certification
  • Attend the (3-day) SFG Level I at the recertification price ($500)
  • Attend as an assistant (if selected—no tuition)
  • Online Recertification ($349)

SFG Level II Kettlebell Instructor Certification

At the SFG II, each candidate must recertify their SFG I skills—and then meet an even higher standard of strength, movement skill, and coaching. Like our SFG I Certification, the SFG II is taught by the most qualified kettlebell instructors on the planet, hand-selected by either Pavel or Chief SFG Brett Jones.

Duration: 2 days of hands-on instruction.

Contact Hours: 16 hours of training and instruction.

Tiered Pricing:
$895: Advance.
$1095: Early.
$1295: Full.
$1395: Late.

Certification Validity: The SFG Level II Instructor credential is good for two years.

Certification Requirements: Technique skills & performance test—details here.

Prerequisite: Completion of the SFG Kettlebell Instructor Level I Certification is a prerequisite for attendance to the Level II.

Testing Guidelines: If an Instructor candidate fails half or fewer of the requirements, a 6-month extension will be given to retest with a Master SFG, Senior SFG, or SFG Team Leader via video submission or in-person. The SFG II Instructor certificate will not be issued until a pass is completed on all tests.  If a pass of the Level I tests is attained, then the Level I certificate will be renewed for two years. A Certificate of Attendance is offered for those who attend and are pending a passing score.

Recertification: Must be registered prior to current certification’s expiration for the following options:

  • Attend the SFG Level II at the recertification price ($500)
  • Attend as an assistant (if selected—no tuition)
  • Online Recertification ($349)

SFB Bodyweight Instructor Certification

StrongFirst’s bodyweight curriculum and training methodology is based off the strength-skill model. The SFB teaches fundamental exercises and the battery of tension techniques to build total body strength. Learn how to apply these techniques and bodyweight exercises seamlessly into a barbell or kettlebell regimen.

Our SFB Certifications are taught by the most qualified bodyweight instructors on the planet, all hand-picked by Pavel or Chief SFB Karen Smith.

Duration: 2 days of hands-on instruction.

Contact Hours: 16 hours of training and instruction.

Tiered Pricing:
$895: Advance.
$1095: Early.
$1295: Full.
$1395: Late.

Certification Validity: The SFB Instructor credential is good for two years.

Certification Requirements: Teaching safely and effectively. Strength test—details here.

Testing Guidelines: Candidates have a choice of taking the strength test during the Certification or submitting a video up to 6 months after the event. The SFB Bodyweight Instructor certificate will not be issued until all requirements are met and passed.  A Certificate of Attendance is offered for those who attend without testing.

Recertification: Must be registered prior to current certificate’s expiration for the following options:

  • Attend the SFB Certification at the recertification price ($500)
  • Online Recertification ($349)

SFL Barbell Instructor Certification

StrongFirst’s  barbell curriculum and training methodology was a collaborative effort from Pavel Tsatsouline, Dr. Michael Hartle, Fabio Zonin, and Brett Jones. The SFL method teaches barbell skills on the platform of StrongFirst kettlebell skills. It has a focus on scientific strength program design, and progressions, regressions, coaching cues, and correctives.

Our SFL Certifications are taught by the most qualified barbell instructors on the planet, all hand-picked.

Duration: 3 days of hands-on instruction.

Contact Hours: 20 hours of training and instruction.

Tiered Pricing:
$1195: Advance.
$1395: Early.
$1595: Full.
$1695: Late.

Certification Validity: The SFL Instructor credential is good for two years.

Certification Requirements: Teaching safely and effectively. Strength and technique test—details here.

Testing Guidelines: Candidates have a choice of taking the strength and technique test during the Certification or submitting a video up to 6 months after the end of the Cert. The SFL Barbell Instructor certificate will not be issued until a pass is completed on all tests.  A Certificate of Attendance is offered for those who attend without testing.

Recertification: Must be registered prior to current certificate’s expiration for the following options:

  • Attend the SFL Cert at the Recertification price ($500)
  • Online Recertification ($349)

Testing Requirement Exemption

In rare cases a highly accomplished, national- or international-level coach or athlete may be exempt from the strength test due to a chronic injury.

The exemption is extended to any wounded/injured LE/MIL/First Responders.

The exemption is permitted for all Certifications.

In ALL cases, exemptions will be approved ONLY by the Chiefs SFG, SFL and SFB and on a case-by-case basis.

Instructor Recertification

Recertification Options & Prices:

  • $500 for re-attending your currently held certification
  • The currently listed price for registering to attend your next StrongFirst Certification
  • The currently listed price for registering to attend one of our Special Events
  • Applying to assist at a StrongFirst Certification (no tuition)
  • $349 for our Online Recertification platform

—Online

In order to continue to have access to your Certified Instructors Only site, with exclusive content created for and available to our Certified Instructors, the Certified Instructor apparel store, a Certified Instructor listing on the website, and access to special discounts with our partners, please view your Recertification options.

With the goal of having Certified Instructors continue their education within the School of Strength, we have unified the recertification process. Multiple certifications may be recertified at one time, for one price.

  • $349 Online Recertification registration fee.
  • Important: Submit your recertification at least two weeks prior to expiration.
  • Registration link to submit your recertification skills via video.
  • You may select a Master Instructor you wish to evaluate your recertification, or one can be assigned.
  • This option is available for two consecutive recertifications and then you must choose one of the other options before for recertification before becoming eligible once again to recertify via the online platform.

The online video-based recertification process is as follows:

    1. Review the requirements for the Recertification you are submitting.
    2. Video record yourself performing each individual requirement drill. Be aware of every detail. Display your current instructor certification to the camera at the beginning of the first drill.
    3. Submit your Recertification by going to the Recertification Tests tab and click on the button for the Recertification you are submitting.
    4. Follow the Recertification instructions.
    5. You will receive an email notifying you of the results within two weeks.

Recertification Validity

  • SFG I, SFG II, SFB, or SFL will be renewed for two years from the video testing date.
  • Elite status will be extended for a three year period.

Completion Exceptions

If an injury or circumstance is presented, an extension can be permitted. This is reviewed and allowed by our Director of Education.

Assistant Policy
No charge is assessed to the assistant if assisting at a Certification to complete their Instructor Recertification (see Unified Recertification page for more details).

3.4 Professional Seminars

StrongFirst will at times offer Professional Seminars in order to help achieve the mission. These Professional Seminars allow us to focus on more targeted groups of athletes and strength professionals. At the moment, there are six (6) such events.

Seminar contact hours: 13 hours of training and instruction.

  1. Plan Strong Seminar
  2. Built Strong Seminar
  3. Strong Endurance Seminar
  4. Second Wind Seminar
  5. StrongFirst Resilient Course
  6. All-Terrain Condition Course

(StrongFirst Teachers of Strength are able to attend special events free of charge)

3.5 New Training

StrongFirst is always looking for new ways to spread the message. Our focus will always remain our Workshops and Certifications in our 3 ‘core’ modalities (kettlebell, barbell and bodyweight). We are in the process of developing new, more targeted educational events to reach a newer and larger audience. If you have an idea for a new special event or a way to reach a more targeted group of athletes and professionals, please send your comments to: brett.jones@strongfirst.com.