Wow....so much has happened in the past few months. Where do I begin???
Better go with a list format to make sure I hit the points I need to:
1. East Coast Debrief: The East Coast Workshop Tour was AWESOME. Starting with Chris Wright-Martell's Modern Self-Defense Center in Middletown, CT, followed the next day by the inaugural Delaware Kettlebell Workshop in Middletown, DE's St. Andrew's School, and finishing with a special workshop in Hamilton, NJ's Israeli Krav Maga Center, and with a few private consults along the way, the tour was a whirlwind of maximum energy and minimal rest.
Sandy Sommer, RKC of Charm City Kettlebells did a great job organizing the Delaware Kettlebell Workshop, and George Samuelson, CK-FMS followed suit in NJ. Rest well assured that I'll be back to both of those places. In fact, we've already got the dates locked down for next year's Delaware Kettlebell Workshop, so get ready for more of the best comin' your way!
What did we cover? Some of the points we touched on are here in this blog: 3 Prys, Hard Style Lock, Swing Cues, Naked Get-Up, combat applications, etc., etc., as well as a plethora of cues & teaching tools that gave even the most experienced of lifters, athletes, & tactical personnel benefits that they weren't expecting. ;-)
I got to see colleagues I hadn't seen in a while (such as RKC II Rolando Garcia, Sr RKC Will Williams, CK-FMS & RKC II Phil Scarito, RKC Jen Morey, RKC Dr. Don Berry, RKC AJ Oliva, RKC Steph Myers, & RKC II Prof. Steve Freides), while meeting other RKCs I'd never met before, like Anton Iskersky, Deb Vollers, & a bunch of kettlebell instructors from other associations & federations. To say it was a blast is understatement at its most blatant. The hospitality, the respect, the warmth (both socially and climatewise), and the
At every stop along the Tour, I had the opportunity to work with people who are some of my favorite folks to interact with - martial artists & tactical personnel. It warmed my heart to see operators from the NJ State Police & PA State Police, as well as other departments make it out to the Tour stops. Their feedback on how these teaching & training methods directly affect and improve their on-the-job performance means perhaps more to me than anything else, as these are the men & women whose lives are on the line constantly for our safety.
I got to log in several hours teaching Sifu Alex Richter at City Wing Tsun in Midtown Manhattan. Sifu Richter is the USA's representative for Grandmaster Leung Ting's Wing Tsun organization, and he's a perfect example of the "yi wu hui you" (Mandarin - "making friends through martial arts") ideal. He's been working with Rolando Garcia and is going to make an AWESOME RKC someday soon.
David Kahn is another such instructor who's a class act all the way. As Chief Instructor of the US branch of the Israeli Krav Maga Association and with a list of high-profile clientele longer than an Oly bar, he made me feel completely at home while teaching at his facility. I'm pleased to call him a friend, honored to have worked with him, and look forward to seeing him again.
My NJ Workshop Participants - For some reason, the pic's getting truncated. Click on the image to see the full pic and all the participants!
To everyone who participated in the East Coast Tour, I'm deeply grateful for all your feedback, I've noted your requests for future workshops, and I'm hard at work RIGHT NOW on putting together more dates and stops.
I may have to sneak back east for Philadelphia's first ever East Coast RKC certification workshop in early October!
2. Going Down..... Under - Yes, the rumors are true. I'm heading to Australia & New Zealand in October. The dates & city stops are almost finalized, but I need to tie up all the loose ends with the organizers. Rest assured that once things are nailed down, the first place you'll get registration info is RIGHT HERE!
3. Apologies: I need to take a moment to apologize to the folks who were looking forward to the Irvine & Riverside, California workshops that I'd originally scheduled for June & July. After coming back from the East Coast, I did a bit of soul searching and realized that the one person who depends on me most was perhaps seeing me the least.
If you're not sure who that is, look up at the top of the page and watch the slideshow. Most of the pics are of him in some way, shape, or form. So in the interests of being a better Dad and spending time with my beloved son, I asked the organizers to work with me to reschedule those workshops, which we will do at some point in the future. I apologize again for disappointing you & promise that these workshops will be held at a future date.
As Sean Schneiderjean, RKC told me on Facebook, Zig Ziegler is quoted as saying, "Love is spelled T-I-M-E." And that precious lesson is one that I'm going to keep in the forefront of my head & my heart.
4. Hit the Beach with Pavel Tsatsouline! - Speaking of Sean, he's set up a very special workshop with RKC Chief Instructor Pavel Tsastouline in Ventura, CA on the beach! If you've ever wanted to learn directly from Pavel without the pressure of a certification or having to spend multiple days at an event, this one-day event in October is your hot ticket. Sean's even set up a special discount code for those of you who are coming as referrals from KBLA, but it's ending at the end of this month! The official deadline is August 7th, but I wouldn't drag my arse on registering. Even some Sr RKCs (Will Williams & David Whitley) are coming in from the East Coast just to have the chance to work more directly with Pavel himself, so please don't sleep on that. REGISTER NOW before the discount ends and the spots are gone!
5. USMC - 1st ANGLICO: I had the honor of attending the Change of Command Ceremony at the invitation of Lt. Col. Michael Gann, RKC. Heading back to Pendleton brought back memories of a great RKC weekend there, and it was a pleasure to see the Devil Dogs again. Please join me in wishing Lt. Col. Gann and his family nothing but Godspeed as they relocate to the Army War College in PA. The Marines of 1st ANGLICO were damn lucky to have a leader like him. And I've NO doubt that his successor will be Hard Styled soon! We salute you, Sir. OOOOO-RAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!
6. Foot Fundamentals: Instead of a monthly workout, I challenge you to do this...
Set your feet about shoulder width apart at a STRICT parallel along the centerline of the foot. Without allowing the balls of your feet to lose contact with the floor or pivot/slide in any way, bend your knees and pry them out until the center of your kneecap is moving in the same vertical plane as your foot. Get 5 reps of that perfectly throughout the day, and use that as your summertime repatterning drill. You may be amazed at how much your feet feel like they're working overtime, but the rest of your lower body will thank you for it. Wanna know more about the science behind that exercise? Get to one of my workshops or classes & find out!