My trip to Miami – World Kettlebell Club Championships

A week ago today, I stood on a platform in Miami at the World Kettlebell Club Championships after being goaded by Lorraine Patten to do something. That something I did was the 20:00 24kg one arm long cycle clean and jerk. I had never gone beyond 6:00 in training with this lift, and I simply wanted to get up there and not embarrass myself. I made the 20:00 – not many reps and it wasn’t pretty – but I made the 20:00. Thanks, Lorraine, for goading me into this. I had no idea before last week that I had a 20:00 set in me.
Witnessing the competition was awe inspiring. I saw some incredible physical and mental performances on the platform. Eduard Trusevich, a 62 year old Latvian, stole the show with his 200+ snatch performance and his 60 jerk performance with the 24kgs. Ivan Denisov, with 151 jerks (that is 15 per minute for 10:00 with a pair of 32kg bells) and 163 snatches was simply incredible. Marty Farrell made Master of Sport, and Andrew Durniat is not far behind.

Scott Helsley and David Zink will almost certainly make Master of Sport in 2008, as they both knocked off a lot of reps in both the biathlon and the long cycle. Chris Duffey, who just started doing this a few months ago, got up on the platform and gave all of us incredibly courageous sets.

In the ladies’ competition, we have new Masters of Sport in Kelly Moore and Ashley Hughes – both of whom are machines. Cate Imes with her performances showed us what this is all about. Mike Stefano, a helluva coach and the Godfather of Stefano’s Mafia (the “Stefmafia” I lovingly call them) , has another Master of Sport in the wings in Melissa Brady and another accomplished lifter in Vanessa Turner. Lauri Radach, Susanna Baxter, and Lorraine all gave us some very inspired performances.

The results are here if you’re interested.

It was nice to finally meet all of you in person. You have no idea how much positive energy you transferred to me, and I can’t wait to see all of you again next year.

I have often said to my friends in the kettlebell community that there are no jerks in kettlebells. Sure, we all have interesting internet personas, but in person, you couldn’t find a nicer and more generous collection of people. We may align ourselves in different camps or parties – kettlebells is a lot like politics – and we all have a slightly different takes on the “proper” way to lift, but everyone who does this is nice in my book.

If you have any doubts about competing, put them aside and train for next year. You won’t regret it.


One Response to “My trip to Miami – World Kettlebell Club Championships”

  1. Catherine Imes Says:

    Nice Write up Charley! You did really well your first time out especially given the fact that you’ve had knee surgery. Glad we got to meet and hopefully I’ll see you sometime in Houston or at another comp in 2008

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