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How would be a good farmer's walk routine for a beginner? How heavy should be the weights? How long the distance?

  • We can't tell you how much weight to use, because it's not a matter of experience. It's a matter of everything else. – Alec Mar 30 '16 at 12:24
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    I think it is a great question, maybe add some more details (bodyweight, fitness level etc) to prevent it from getting closed. – BKE Mar 30 '16 at 16:21
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Dan John recommended one-half bodyweight in each hand to me as a starting benchmark to strive for. (Apparently this is his goal for high school girl athletes.) I found this useful. I don't go beyond 100 meters when I train this lift--usually 50m to some landmark, then 50m back without putting it down.

For further benchmarks, strongman Chet Morjaria says:

It’s likely you’ll be able to pick up and walk with more than you can deadlift.

How much you should start with depends on how much you can do today. For how much you should strive for in the near term:

I believe that 0.75 x bodyweight in each hand is a good starting point for both men and women. Bodyweight in each hand is a great aim and very achievable. Being able to do 1.25 x bodyweight will put you well above the majority into advanced territory, and 1.5 is exceptional.

His recommendations appear specific to people doing strongman training, but the benchmarks provide some context. Regarding distance, he differentiates:

  • Light weight and long distance (40-60m)
  • Mid weight and mid distance (20-30m)
  • Heavy weight and short distance (10-15m)
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    I find that surprising, while not back-breaking, I would struggle with grip strength at 0.75x bodyweight. (60kg in my case). For a complete beginner I would have expected the recommended amount to be around the 20-30kg mark with progressive overload on the weight up to bodyweight. +1 for well researched answer though. – John Mar 31 '16 at 16:02
  • @JJosaur I meant to share these not as beginner weights, but as benchmarks to work towards. I guess I assumed that anyone starting the exercise would find the weight they can do through trial and error, using such benchmarks to gauge where they stand and what they should expect. Would you mind editing my post to help make that more clear? I'm not sure what to say. – Dave Liepmann Apr 1 '16 at 7:27
  • I have suggested some edits. Feel free to reject them if you do not agree. – John Apr 1 '16 at 8:16
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This is very subjective to your personal build.

For a beginner to the concept of farmers walks: Male - 25kg, Female - 20kg (each hand) Use principle of progressive overload to steadily increase the weight to the maximum dumb/kettlebell you can use in your gym and then increase the volume of the exercise.

Keep to 50-100ft for distance covererd

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