Sydney HKC Wrap Up

Sydney HKC Group photo

Wow. That pretty much sums up the most recent HKC held in Sydney, Australia. Let’s look at some of the amazing things that happened to create such a great day:

For the first time we had a Master RKC come to run the HKC. Usually people are blown away by the level of knowledge that an RKC has when it comes to training, correcting movement and maximising their efforts. Then, they meet a Senior and are again blown away. Then they meet a Master…and… well, you see how it goes. There is a very good reason why Dave Whitley is regarded as one of the top six RKC instructors in the world in Pavel’s RKC system. His breakdown of the Swing and Get Up were great and he ran an incredible day of training.

We had the start of a teaching community here. At RKC events overseas people come together to help out, assist teaching and continue learning themselves. Previously, with so few instructors here this was not really possible. Now, with a growing legion of instructors we were able to have 6 assistant teachers on the day. With a Master at the front of the room an RKCII/ CK FMS, Australia’s first female RKC and 4 HKCs we had 7 instructors on hand! This ensured us a good result with everyone and we were able to help more than 50% of the people pass on the day, which is quite a high number.

The day started with the strength/ pull up test which everyone passed easily, and rightly so. Then onto breaking down the Swing and the variety of correctives and exercises we use to build it from the bottom up. This is a vital aspect of Dragon Door certifications – we teach you using the progressions you will use with your own customers to build them from no experience to safe and effective quickly. No other course in the world can offer as much depth in terms of understanding and breaking down the movements.

After a few hours of Swings we started with the Get Up. It always strikes me as funny when people ay things like “I’ve got the Get Up, it’s easy”. While they may be able to hold something overhead and stand up, there’s a fair chance they are not competent in our eyes as far as the safety of their technique. Small details such as bent wrists lead to a fail and bent arms indicate a lack of either thoracic extension or rotator cuff strength – all easily spotted by trained RKC eyes and all with corrective drills to fix them.

The next part of the day really caught me off guard – I was asked by Dave to teach the Goblet Squat! Now, as a lowly RKCII it was out of the ordinary to be asked to do so. I have to admit to being a little nervous at first but within a minute or so was in my groove and moving forward with the progressions and breakdown. The only hiccup here was my demonstration model splitting her pants during a squat!

Dave’s HKC was a little unusual compared to previous ones I have attended as he had a round of individual practice. This is normal practice at RKC events and personally I find it very useful for honing my own technique. It also gave the instructors a lot of time to work with people on their biggest issues and fine tune their technique before the testing.

The teaching test was among the best group I had seen. With quite a few experienced trainers we witnessed a group not intimidated at all by teaching and largely using the methods set out to build technique with their victims. I believe the teaching aspect of the course to be a strong point and know that no other group in fitness in Australia takes it as seriously as we do. In fact, one of the students who was border line pass/ fail was ultimately failed over what he showed during his teaching test when it was decided that a little more time spent on personal practice would help his teaching too.

After a long and tiring day it is unpleasant for people to hear that they haven’t passed for whatever reason, however I believe that every single person who didn’t pass on the day will become a better instructor for being asked to go and do more work on their individual technique. Unlike other groups we will not just hand over a certificate and we will also not pass you if we feel you are dangerous. As Master RKC Andrea du Cane says “If I don’t feel comfortable letting them teach my mother, I am not comfortable with them passing”. I hope that every single person who attended goes on to pass eventually after fulfilling their retest requirements, whatever they may be. The group this weekend was great and we were quite lucky as everyone came with the right attitude and were keen to learn from a Master RKC.

Dave also ran a couple of outstanding workshops the next day. I am not going to go into them too much except to say that it was the best presentation of the Kalos Sthenos Get Up and variations into the Bent Press that I have yet seen. It was easily a highlight of what has been an outstanding year for me personally. When you consider that I have attended CK FMS, RKCII and RKCIII workshops this year and seen Gray Cook, Brett Jones, Pavel et al present that should tell you how great I think it was. Simply outstanding and cemented the reason why Dave is so highly thought of. Not only that but he is a great guy to work with.

Congratulations to all our new HKCs – Becky Bell, Claude Castro, Ryan Walsh, Rachel Godfrey, Fiona Coutts, Steve Parris, Jab and John Legg. Great work guys, I hope to see you all at RKC soon!

The wrap up wouldn’t be complete without special thanks to the teaching team who came from all over. Shannon Scullin did an amazing job as my 2IC for the day and held things together a few times when it all looked like going pear shaped. Not only that but she is becoming a great teacher and represents the RKC with pride and skill as out first female. The Brisbane boys – Alan Salvo and Tim Uljarevic – also did a great job. Without Tim’s assistance at the previous HKC Sydney might not have happened and Alan is well on the way to becoming an RKC next year in April. The amazing Sigrun Bishop took the time to come from Rockhampton and help out and has grown again in understanding since the Brisbane HKC where she was a stand out. And finally to my student Sam Johnson, thanks very much. While the youngest assistant on the day he showed great maturity and ability in helping people learn and improve during the day. Guys – couldn’t have done it without you!

The teaching team - the best of Australia and Master RKC Dave Whitley.

This was a landmark event for our country. An elite instructor, a group of the best talent in Australia assisting and the continued growth of the world’s best strength system down under. Our next event is planned for melbourne, March 19. If you’re on the fence you’d be silly to miss out on such a great opportunity.

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One Response to “Sydney HKC Wrap Up”

  1. David Park, HKC Says:

    Fantastic to hear, and I know it’s all true. I’ve been blessed to learn so much from Dave Whitley here in Nashville (and yes, he led my HKC, too) that it’s great to see him spread the Iron Tamer clan down under.

    Hardstyle!

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