The Benefits of Doing Farmers Walks

We all know some corn-fed country boys who grew up on farms, baled hay, carried heavy stuff, ate eggs, drank milk and turned out to be strong S.O.B.’s. Likewise we all know some old-timers who grew up on farms and maybe worked farms all their life. Those old-timers have old man strength. Old man farm strength is un-paralleled. I once tried to arm wrestle an old-timer who grew up on a farm. That man’s arms were like steel – they would not budge an inch. Since all he seemed to do at present was drink beer and smoke cigarettes I can only assume he had done his heavy lifting on the farm and that strength just stayed with him.

Obviously the best way to gain farm strength is to grow up on a farm, doing heavy work, drinking your raw milk, and eating your eggs and bacon.

The next best way to gain farm strength is to do Farmers Walks.

Farmers Walks are the simplest exercise in existence – pick up some heavy weights and walk as far as you can. Repeat. Farmers Walks are also one of the best strength builders you can do.  If you can’t believe that you should try and arm wrestle ol’ Billy Ray who works on his papa’s dairy farm and see who comes out on top. I got my money on Billy.

Another beautiful aspect of Farmers Walks is that there are almost limitless variations. It only takes a little imagination and you have yourself an entire workout just carrying heavy loads.  Here are a few variations:

1) Grab two HEAVY dumbbells and walk as far as you can. This is the most common version. This will tear up your traps and your forearms and just generally make a man out of you.

2) Deadlift a HEAVY loaded bar and walk with it as far as you can.

3) Grab two dumbbells, shoulder press them overhead and walk with them overhead for as far as you can walk. Also known as Waiters Walks.

4) Clean a heavy loaded bar, press it overhead to lock-out and walk with is as far as you can.

5) Pick up any heavy object and carry it as far as you can.

6) Carry a heavy dumbbell or barbell overhead one arm at a time.

Easy peasy, Japanesy. Remember to use heavy weight if you want any benefit. You wouldn’t see ol’ Billy Ray walking around with no 15 lb dumbbells.

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  1. Jacob says

    Late to the party I know, but I have noticed that all my muscles worked during the farmers walk have gotten signficantly stronger for me lately. I blame my newborn twins. Hah!

    Pretty new to the blog, Vic. Love it and keep’em coming!

  2. Anders says

    I grew up on the country, but haven’t done any heavy work in particular. Arm wrestled a 210 lbs steroided bouncer (me at 154 lbs) in welding school a few years back. I knew I was going to lose most probably, and I did, but the guy actually boasted afterwards to all the other students how I could probably take all of them.

    To add Victor, try shaking hands with a farrier. Those guys are strong as hell, usually quite large fellas also. I’d say they have a very ‘tough’ type of strength, much like the farmers (which can be very related to farrier work)

    Nice site with a lot of truth.