At my facility we have a set of core values, two of which are Be Innovative and Have a Growth Mindset. I think that as a business, especially one that is a direct reflection of me, it is important to have some “rules” that guide your actions. As part of trying to live up to the two I just mentioned I am always looking for learning opportunities that will allow me to continue to develop the best mountain bike training programs in the world.

This last year my big investment was going to Mike Boyle’s facility for a 4 day mentorship. It was a great experience that I wrote several blog posts about (do a search for Mike Boyle on my blog to find them) and this next year I wanted to find another “hero” of mine in this industry and see what they had to say. After thinking about it and looking around I signed up for the RKC Certification coming up in May.

RKC stand for Russian Kettlebell Challenge and is the brainchild of Pavel Tsatsouline, the man who helped popularize kettlebells in this country in the mid 90’s (yes, they’ve been around in the US for that long). He also wrote Power to the People, one of the simplest yet most profound training books I’ve ever read. In it he talked about how the nervous system impacts your strength levels and how to “reprogram” it to get freaky strong, things that have shaped my training programs ever since.

So, getting the chance to learn about kettlebells from the man himself is something I’m looking forward to. In addition to attending the class there is also a physical test – 5 pull ups and 100 snatches with a 24 kilo (52 lb.) kettlebell in 5 minutes. The 100 snatches is a feat and something I’m looking forward to training for. I gave it a test run a couple weeks back and got 77 snatches, not bad but not good enough for the RKC.

I’m also curious how my riding will be impacted by my training for the snatch test. When I can crank out 100 in 5 minutes will I have more leg drive and endurance? Will I be faster and more powerful? Or will it make little difference on the trail? I guess I’ll find out and see that knowledge impacts the next generation of programs I write.

-James Wilson-

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