The Road to the RKC – Week 0

****Editor's Note: Each week I will be posting my thoughts on training for my upcoming RKC certification course in Orlando in October.  These are pretty much just unstructured random thoughts on my training and how I'm adapting to a different routine.***

So the good news is that I didn't slip a disc – I can be a bit of a hypochondriac sometimes – and I just strained my psoas.  I went to see my good friend, Dr. Bill Wells over at the Urban Athlete in Toronto and he fixed me right up.

If you're ever in need of a chiropractor in the Toronto area, I strongly suggest you visit The UA. Their chiro team is second to none and the beauty about it is that they're all athletes or former athletes (Bill's an ultra-endurance athlete, they've got a few practitioners who still compete as well and even a former Olympian).

The bad news is that I have to take a few forced days off from training so I can let this injury heal. So instead of trying to amp up the volume a little, I'll be doing a lot of basic isometric ab work, stretching, foam rolling, trigger point work and probably practicing my handstands.

But absolutely no kettlebells!

Starting next week, I'll be following the RKC prep program that was created by Master RKC Brett Jones and outlined on his blog. I'm going to follow the program strictly and, because it's a great idea, even schedule my major workouts on Friday, Saturday and Sunday – because the RKC workshop is on the weekend. How's that for training specificity?

In addition to that, I'll be training on Tuesday & Wednesday practicing snatches and doing some bodyweight stuff – mainly chin-ups, pistols, dips and handstands – and probably running hills on one of those days.

So my schedule once I start feeling close to 100% will look like this…

Monday – OFF

Tuesday – KB Snatches/snatch test practice, chin-ups, pistols

Wednesday – KB Snatches/snatch test practice, run hills

Thursday – OFF

Friday – RKC Prep Workout #1

Saturday – RKC Prep Workout #2

Sunday – RKC Prep Workout #3

Something tells me that I'm going to LOVE having Mondays off from training.

So I've got 12 weeks to prepare for the RKC in Orlando.  The biggest obstacle, and I hate to call them an obstacle, will be my family.  I'm a big sucker for my wife and kids so finding time to train on the weekend will be tough.  I think more than anything it's a matter of self-discipline and sticking to a set training time each day.  To avoid anyone getting hit by a swinging kettlebell, it looks like that workout time will be early AM.

One other curiosity that I've got is how training for the RKC is going to affect my body aesthetically.  So sometime this week I will be taking some "before" pictures and posting them and then I'll take a set every week.

Here we go!



  • Reply July 30, 2010


    I have been following the same program in preparation for my RKC weekend that is just 4 weeks from today. This program has helped tremendously in preparing for a grueling weekend of training. Following Brett’s program, I feel as prepared as I possibly can. A couple things that have really helped me prepare is doing the snatch test every week and also incorporating high rep swings, emphasizing perfect technique.
    So, 4 weeks to go and I am hoping to join the elite group of RKC’s, but know we’ll have to earn it.
    Look forward to your future updates and will definitely be sharing my experiences, as well.
    Train hard, train smart commrade!
    Best Regards,
    Scott Iardella, MPT, CISSN, HKC

    • good luck, Scott!

      My plan is to do snatches 3 times per week (twice sub-max for practice and once for an actual snatch test) each week leading up to the RKC. I’m glad you commented and let me know that the program’s been working for you. I’m looking forward to the journey.


  • Reply July 30, 2010


    Great stuff! We did similar prep work before our IKFF certification here in Singapore. I’d have jumped at the chance to be RKC certified, but there’re only 1 or 2 RKC instructors here. I self-taught myself every single technique in Pavel’s Enter The Kettlebell. However, the techniques taight at the IKFF certification were quite different and really wierd. Oh well, you have to make do with what you’ve got. I’m still doing kettlebells the RKC way, no 2 ways about it!

  • Reply July 30, 2010


    By the way, I’d love to see the before and after pics. It’s really intriguing to see how high-rep KB lifting changes you!

  • Reply July 30, 2010


    Chris, I suggest doing the snatch test every Friday morning. The test will actually be on Fridays so you want to get you body ready for that. I do not recommend doing the test more than once a week and back off the volume if you feel tired. I followed the same program, maybe you got it from my website and the RKC was not hard for me after following that program. Snatch test went very fast, no need to post my time here. I followed 100% advice from Dave Whitley Master RKC

    The RKC is a course not only about fatigue management but skill. There are no “show off’s” or “egos” at the RKC, the goal is the LEARN and PASS. I saw 40% of my classmates fail and I assure you most of them never went on the get the cert, which would have to be done within 90 days.

    • Dale

      thanks for the advice about the test being on Fridays. that helps a lot.

      I was only planning on doing the test once per week, so thanks for reaffirming that decision.

      I haven’t had a chance to check your site yet, but I will definitely do so and will get on the DD forum and look around for Dave’s advice as well.

      I love the RKC/Dragon Door philosophy of no show offs or egos. I’m going there to learn, and you better believe that I’m over-preparing to pass.


  • Reply July 30, 2010


    Hey Guys,

    Yes, I have to agree that doing the Snatch Test every Friday is a Huge factor in training success.
    And, I’m giving credit where credit is due.
    That tip came from Dale, as well, who is right here with me in South Florida. So, Dale thanks for that tip man, that has been HUGE for me, hitting that TEST every Friday.

    As good as I feel about RKC weekend, I know it will be a very humbling experience, without a doubt. I trained extremely hard for this, and am ready to give it my best, that’s all I can do.

    Chris, follow that program by Brett, that is incredible preparation and in 12 weeks, you should be good to go!
    In 4 weeks, LEARN & PASS sounds great to me!

    Best in Training, ~Scott

  • Reply August 5, 2010



    Thanks for the props, let’s get together soon. I remember when you are here struggling to complete 100 reps and I pushed you to do it no matter what, and it happened in I think 5:30. Now look at you, killing it in 3:30. That’s the RKC power.

    I’m just saying this because Scott almost gave up and he is now very confident in his abilities. I have seen him since his 1st workshop with Andrea DuCane last November and he’s come a long way.

    Anybody can do this if they work hard and set goals. I was the underdog and passed the RKC without any issues but so many people go their to show off and they fail. Just do your best and learn:)

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