Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Steiner Sisters Pave the Way for the Next Generation of Kettlebell Lifters

At 14 and 16, Scarlett and Lyra Steiner are two of the youngest team members on Seattle Kettlebell Club’s Sport Team. After seeing them work hard at our KettleFIT and KettleSPORT classes on a regular basis along with hitting big numbers at SKC’s Pro-am back in December, I sat down with them to chat about their experience at SKC. 

How did you get involved with SKC?

Lyra: “Our parents. Their old gym closed, and they came here. I really didn’t want to do it at first, but then our dad kind of made us do it, and we ended up liking it more than he does.”

You both started with the KettleFIT classes. What lured you to give SPORT a try?

Lyra: “I was here on the first day of the sport cycle, and I wasn’t planning on taking the Sport class, but Nora invited me over, and encouraged me to try it, and I really liked it!” 

Scarlett: “And Lyra encouraged me to do it. I was hesitant because everyone seemed like such a team, and I didn’t think I was ready, but I tried it out, and I really liked it. I really like being part of a team.”

Photo Credit: Truong Win

You guys are some of our younger members. What is it like working out with an older crowd?

Scarlett: “At first, I felt self-conscience because I thought people would just see me as some random kid, but I like being able to do the things that they do.” 

Lyra: “I’ve never felt excluded here or anything. It’s a great atmosphere even though I’m half the age of a lot of people.”

What do you two like about the competition side of things?

Scarlett: “The competition was so fun for me. I didn’t think I could do how many reps I did, but everyone was cheering, and I was able to. That was really gratifying.” 

 What is your favorite part of coming to class every day?

 Lyra: “The community is really great. I know most people in the classes, and they’re supportive. I can see people progressing, and they can see me progressing.” 

What are your goals for future competitions?

Scarlett: “I’d love to catch up to Lyra eventually. That’s a big part of my motivation. I would like to continue doing kettlebells as long as I can.” 

Lyra: “I want to be able to lift the 16s [kilogram kettlebells].” 

How has coming here improved other aspects of your life? 

Scarlett: “I always feel good when I’m here. I feel strong, and that transfers to my home and school life.”

Have a friend are partner who wants to join SKC with you? Scarlett and Lyra are on the Kodiak Membership: two people on one payment. Sign up now! We're raising the prices soon!

-Camille Borodey

Monday, January 21, 2019

Long Term Fitness Enthusiast Finds Her Sport

With a career as a running, strength, and conditioning coach, much of Leah Kangas’s life has revolved around fitness, but with kettlebells she says she’s finally found her sport. 

“I think I may have had a crush on the gym for a while through social media and YouTube and maybe a crush on the sport. It just took me acting on it a while,” Leah said. 

Photo Credit: Truong Win

After college, Leah began ultra-running (longer races than marathons), and she dabbled in other fitness practices. Kettlebell training originally appealed to her because of the healthy mix of strength and endurance the sport offers. 

Leah joined SKC back in August to do some private sessions with Nikolai, (SKC co-owner) so she could learn the technique and programming of kettlebell sport, but she quickly grew to love the gym’s environment. 

“It was clear how much he cares, and how much the other coaches care, and there is a solid community here,” Leah said. “Everybody introduces themselves and seems to root for each other, and that seems really special. This gym is so newbie friendly and welcoming.”

Leah’s first competition was at Seattle Kettlebell Club’s Pro-Am on. Dec.1st 

“I wasn’t sure how I would like standing in front of people like that, but it was actually a nice challenge to stay in the zone with technique and breathing,” Leah said. “It was a fun experience to have and succeed at. The training cycle was put together so well, so I felt super prepared and confident going in.”

At the Pro-Am, Leah completed a 10-min biathlon (jerk & snatch) with 8-kg kettlebells, and she hopes to compete with 12-kg bells at her next competition. Leah was one of many SKC members competing for the first time at the pro-am, and she praises the gym for being so inclusive. 

Along with coaching athletes, Leah is also a massage therapist: Photo Credit: Truong Win

“It was super fun to just see all the newbies competing. I think that’s such a skill for a coach or a coaching community to have that many people comfortable enough to step up and try something different,” Leah said. 

Leah’s experience has taught her that many athletes can over-train, so she notes that she appreciates that classes at SKC are 45-minutes, and she’s able to get an effective workout without overdoing it. She also notes that the sport has helped her balance her fitness, work, and social life, and she feels fortunate to have so much support in and outside of SKC.  

“I feel like a lot of people in my work life have felt really supported by me for so long, so my friends and my client base were so excited to see me compete. I’ve been teasing that I was going to do this for so long, so they were just super excited to see me so excited,” Leah said.  

You don’t have to be an aspiring athlete to swing kettlebells; we cater to people of all fitness levels! Sign up for an intro package today!  

-Camille Borodey 

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

How To Make and KEEP Your Resolutions!

1) Make Specific Goals

Meaning if you want to get in better shape, what steps do you need to take to work towards that goal? It might be as easy as committing to go to one group exercise class per week. Make your goals as specific as possible!

Hailey has a blast teaching KettleFIT classes

2) Choose Measurable Outcomes

Make goals that have a clear outcome, and decide how you will measure your success. It isn’t enough to say “I want to get fitter.” Choose a specific benchmark. A goal I have is that I want to be able to do 10 complete pushups without stopping by May 12th. 

3)   Get a Partner! 

Find someone in your circle of support with similar goals/resolutions who can help motivate you! Perhaps you have a friend that can come with you once per week to that class or can hold you accountable when you're struggling to make healthy choices.

Ruben offers Truong a fist bump after a challenging set.
4) Come Up With a Plan

I don’t mean for how you will achieve success. Come up with a plan on how you will handle road bumps, so it's more difficult to make excuses! What is your plan of attack for when you go on vacation or when you know you have a busy week ahead?

5) Write Down Your “why”

Why did you initially set this goal? Write it down somewhere, and when the going gets tough, refer to this to remind yourself why you shouldn't quit. Obstacles will come, and it can be easy to get discouraged, but those who are successful are prepared and can handle the road bumps accordingly. 

Need help getting started? There are still spots available for Saturday's Intro Workshop. Sign up for an Intro Package now! 

-Hailey Walker