So James, what’s so great about kettlebells?

Kettlebells are great because they are so versatile in how, where and in what fashion they can be used. Kettlebells are the most dynamic training tool which can be used in a ballistic method or in a grind type of lifting. They are the only training tool that can be transitioned seamlessly from one type of lift to another. They are designed to work with the human body’s joint patterns, therefore reducing any potential cumulative damage.

Any resistance training program should provide strength and flexibility. People often exclude one of these in favor of the other. If a man goes to the gym to get stronger or bigger, chances are he is not too concerned with flexibility. Females are usually the opposite. Both strength and flexibility are equal focal points when you train properly with kettlebells.

Why did you decide that kettlebell training was the method you wanted to use as a functional movement trainer?

When I started training with kettlebells, I received benefits to my strength and flexibility that I had never experienced with other methods. The purpose of my training was to build my strength and flexibility while staying injury-free, and I realized that kettlebells were the best training tool for me to accomplish that.

Upon further research, I realized kettlebell exercises are so diverse and functional that it convinced me I had to incorporate this style into my program. The more I used, them the more I loved them, and the more I used them!

What are your qualifications to be a functional movement trainer?

Functional movements are defined as movements based on real-world biomechanics, not limited to but often including multi-planar, multi-joint movements which challenge the balance, stability, and strength of an individual’s core muscles. Using this as our definition, a functional movement trainer must understand the anatomical structure of the body, as well as the normal ranges of motion and specific paths of motion each joint and/or section of the body can endure. This is absolutely critical to understand when considering functional movement training.

I am an athlete who has participated in almost every sport in North America, and I have also received extensive education. I hold a BS in exercise physiology and multiple certifications, including the prestigious Russian Kettlebell Certification (RKC). Through my education and training, I have come to a full understanding of the functions of the muscles and joints, as well as the specific motion patterns they are capable of without potential injury.

The key to an individual’s training is to learn how to move properly—to control the body for a specific purpose while supporting an external load. As proper motion patterns are degraded and limited over time due to injury or natural wear, a person’s functional abilities decrease. This often leads to muscular imbalances and multiple compensations in movement patterns, and will eventually cause deterioration of the joints and the structure of a person’s body. This is common in many adults as they age and is the result of lack of knowledge and/or lack of effort.

The primary purpose of my training is: To teach people about the proper function of the body, and to help them discover their potential with their strength, flexibility, and overall feeling of wellness. I truly believe kettlebells are the only training tool that can deliver these results to a person if one training tool had to be exclusively used. When kettlebells are used properly (very important!), the body produces the necessary resistance to strengthen the core and joints while promoting correct motion patterns. The key to it all is the type of ballistic force produced by the bell, which allows the body to contract and strengthen from the inside out. That’s how I look at kettlebell training: It strengthens from the inside out!

What is the significance of your RKC (Russian Kettlebell Certification) designation?

RKC members are part of a worldwide community of knowledge and support regarding proper functional movement and strength. The RKC community is full of people with extensive knowledge who are available for help and consultation. Wearing the RKC badge signifies dedication and hard work toward learning how to maintain sound and controlled movement patterns with resistance. To pass the RKC, one must accept the challenge of preparing for the most grueling conditions a person could possibly experience with a kettlebell. While strenuous effort is necessary, proper alignment and body control are taught and demanded in order to pass.

A person who teaches kettlebell training must understand their students not only physically, but also mentally. A kettlebell instructor must understand the feelings a person has while moving with a kettlebell. This is the best and most accurate way to help another individual use correct movement patterns and maintain safety, in my opinion. This is what I value in my RKC badge.

I can see how kettlebell training increases strength, but how does it increase flexibility?

It increases flexibility because of the full range of motion that is used for each and every movement. In addition, the positions required while moving the kettlebell ballistically cause greater levels of flexibility, particularly in the hamstrings.

Are your classes purely kettlebell exercises, or are there non-kettlebell exercises as well?

While kettlebells are the main focus in my training style, there are several other body, weight and other functional exercises that we do. I do believe that kettlebells are the best tool, but I also believe in diversification in resistance types while training for a well-rounded understanding of motion patterns and potential limitations. I incorporate certain exercises with my kettlebell training for the purposes of conditioning and well-rounded strengthening.

Can children and senior citizens use kettlebells?

Potentially, yes. Children are welcome to participate in kettlebell training if they can maintain bodily control and understand and implement directions well. Kettlebell training is for everyone who can demonstrate bodily control with instruction and has adequate range of motion without significant pain. A simple movement screen can be done to help an individual understand if they have proper range of motion for kettlebell training.

Is there anyone who should NOT use kettlebells?

Anyone with a heart condition or some extreme level of degeneration in the spine, or any other major spinal or heart conditions, must check with a doctor before training with kettlebells.

Do I need to buy my own kettlebells to take your classes, or do you provide them?

I provide all the equipment needed to train in class. You provide the ENERGY and DEDICATION!!!!

When are your classes?

Class times are M, W, F 1pm and 6:30pm; Tu, Th 6am; and Sat 8am. Additional class times will be available in the future!

If I sign up for classes, should I expect to start using kettlebells right away?

Yes, however each new person must participate in 3-5 intro level lessons before coming into class. The purpose of the intro lessons is to train on alignment and condition the body. The foundation of kettlebell training is teaching correct movement patterns. First, we need to learn proper movement patterns; then and ONLY then can we add resistance. If a person has had previous kettlebell training, they must demonstrate proper alignment and handling techniques before coming to class.

Is there a risk of injury when I use kettlebells?

Yes, there is risk of injury while using kettlebells. There is always risk of injury in any form of resistance training. However, if taught correctly and if the trainee demonstrates what has been taught, there is little to no risk of injury. One thing I pride myself on is keeping people safe while training. Safe and effective training is my motto.

How long have people been exercising with kettlebells?

People have been exercising with kettlebells for approximately 300 years. It is one of the oldest forms of structured resistance training in the world today.

I want a workout that will help me be a better basketball player. Is kettlebell training for me?

Absolutely! Kettlebell training is IDEAL for athletes that need strength in their core, legs and back and who use their hips to produce accelerated movement and/or force. In other words, kettlebell training is pretty much IDEAL for every athlete!

Help! I haven’t worked out in years and I’ve grown “soft.” Can I start kettlebelling right away, or should I do something else and work up to it?

No worries, I take everyone through beginner conditioning and give everyone homework to do in between lessons.

Isn’t kettlebelling just like lifting weights?

It is, in that it’s used as an external load against your body like a barbell or dumbbell. However, traditional weight training is often uni-planar and only trains musculature to perform one restricted motion. This can often create tightness in tendons and wear in isolated sections of the body.

A kettlebell is handled much differently than any other resistance tool and therefore gives a much different–what I would consider to be an enhanced–result. Kettlebells are used in coordination with movement and combinations of forceful tension and ballistic force with equal moments of relaxation. The proper use of a kettlebell will produce a stronger, more balanced and coordinated person in all respects to movement.

What is the flow of a typical kettlebell class?

The first ten minutes of every class are spent going through mobility exercises. This movement prep is used to prepare the body for the workout. After a demo of the workout, the workout portion lasts approximately 35-40 minutes. The last ten minutes of class are used to cool down and stretch. Stretching is encouraged outside of class as well.

Can people with arthritis do kettlebells?

It is possible, depending on the location and severity of the arthritis. Talk to your doctor for a recommendation.

Do you follow the same routine in every class, or do you mix things up?

Every class has a different workout routine specifically designed in conjunction with the other routines. Routines are coordinated according to muscle groups and their function.

For schedule and pricing information, please visit our Schedule page.