10/10 The low down on being working with Andrew
/ Melbourne, Australia
The main reason I initially started writing this review was because I was in fact asked by Andrew to give my thoughts for the website. Importantly, he put no pre-conditions on this and insisted that it be unfiltered and not sent to him in advance for any vetting. Although I’m a pretty outgoing sort of person, and very open with friends, or anyone for that matter one-on-one, I’m actually very private when it comes to posting things on the internet and social media (although I have my moments of weakness) and so it takes a bit to get me to put something out there so publically like this. That said, when I do something, there are no half measures and I do things properly. Besides, it gives me a good opportunity to take stock and reflect on why I keep getting up some ungodly hour and out the door four mornings per week, having to re-work all sorts of routines and put up with the logistical issues, to bust my ass and pay $132 / fortnight for the privilege. So here goes, my impressions of both Andrew Read the man, and the journey thus far with Read Personal Training (RPT).
I started at RPT in April 2013 and at that point was thoroughly disillusioned with the futility of what I was doing on the fitness front - doing workouts at home a few days per week based on what I had picked up from all sorts of sources; not getting any stronger, leaner or better conditioned but feeling liked I had ‘worked out’; and frequently picking up injuries.
I had always resisted the prospect of using a trainer, misguidedly thinking it was mainly for people who were time poor, lazy, had money to burn or just needed someone to motivate them. I had enough stuff at home, was careful where I spent my money, thought I knew enough and the desire to exercise and remain active had never really left me, so why pay for the services of someone I figured?
However, the time came that I eventually realized that I was beating my head up a wall and not really getting anywhere. I was still in effect paying dearly for my ignorance in terms of lost time, physio bills and the like. After coming across dragon door on the internet, I started searching through the reviews and was impressed by the depth of them referring to just how good this Andrew Read fella was. It was not just a handful of words of gushing praise, but real detail on what Andrew had taught them and how their training and results had just turned around. What did I have to lose I thought?
My plan at that stage was just to go for a few sessions, to iron out a few kinks in my technique, get them to teach me a few exercises, give me a few workouts and I’d be on my way back to my home gym with perhaps a periodic refresher “tune up” to make sure I hadn’t picked up any bad habits.
I recall speaking to Andrew for the 1st time one day during a work break for about 30 – 45 minutes and being a little struck by the directness and the conviction he had with his views. While it made sense to me on one level, another part of me remained a little cynical and doubting. My own personal failings or outcomes from past experiences have a tendency of leading to one becoming closed off and cynical. That mindset isn’t helped when you see just how many poor service professionals there are in all walks of life, happy to take your money and offering little in return. Andrew took every question I had and served it back with interest, and did not sugar coat anything or put me under any illusions. While he may have been in ‘sales mode’ to some degree, there was also an impression left that he wasn’t going to grovel for my business and whilst not explicitly said, there was an undercurrent of take it or leave it, and a strength of conviction that deep down gave me a good feeling about it.
I was a bit taken back initially too that there was a process I had to follow, a minimum standard I needed to have achieved technique wise, just to be given the all clear to join the group classes. This would usually take 4 – 5 sessions. At $150 / timeSo, what are my impressions of Andrew himself and how the journey at RPT has evolved? How would I describe Andrew in a few words? A few spring to mind: single-minded; disciplined; direct; opinionated; uncompromising; confrontational; highly principled; detail driven; perfectionist; demanding; intense & brutal (at times); high intellect; confident; driven; competitive; healthy ego; likes to have the last word; but to name a few. He also has an eye like a dead fish as the old saying goes, and is incredibly focused on the minutia or intricate details of a movement. He can be a difficult man to get to know and break through the hard exterior at first and if he has a soft side, then by jeez he hides it well. Andrew is a bit of a different ‘cat’ that beats to the sound of his own drum, but is like an onion in some ways with a few layers and complexities there. If you give your best consistently, and ask the right sort of questions, he is more than happy to help and you gain his respect over time, but you have to earn it. At other times he doesn’t say a lot and I’ve come to learn that means you are doing well. When you get a compliment then certainly take it!
It wasn’t an easy start in some ways, as just when I thought I was up and on my way, came a few rude awakenings. I soon realized I didn’t know that much at all when it came to what was required, that I had blind spots, and that it would be a long haul, and no quick fix. He sets the boundaries very clearly about expectations and I quickly learned the hard way also that if one is not ‘present’ and switched on for the training, or if you forget your workout log for example, that you’ll get very publically called on it and he does not suffer fools gladly. One day I recall vividly, I thought he was particularly harsh on me and I felt a little embarrassed and humiliated and left the group session feeling a little sorry for myself. He seems to have a sixth sense though and an hour or so later came a text, not apologizing as such but conceding ever so slightly in a round about sort of way that he may have been a little more tactful in getting his message across. A few texts were swapped, but I learned then that he is a man who has no filter and just calls things brutally as he sees them. I found him a little intimidating and confronting at first and even to this day, I feel like I still haven’t worked him out fully, and have to be a little more circumspect about thinking what I say. I find that Andrew says and does things that still surprise me and take me back and I say to myself “Whoa, I wasn’t expecting that!” and that certainly maintains a little edge from my perspective.
I don’t mind pushing back at times and try and put up some sort of debate but he always seems to win in the end and invariably he is proven right. I’ve come to realize that he knows his stuff intimately and his confidence and certainty comes not from arrogance, but from working hard and consistently for 20 years and never resting on his laurels. That said, at the same time he is not closed off and is always learning and pushing the boundaries and looking for ways that better not just himself, but also can carry over to benefit his clients.
I’ll happily debate him on area’s outside his core area’s of expertise but if you step into his domain, by jeez, you’d better know what you are talking about as you’ll get a mixture of short shrift and detailed reasons why. I keep forgetting that he has seen and heard it all before when it comes to excuses and the mental tricks and rationalizations we all play on ourselves. Rest assured, he will call you on your BS and won’t massage your ego, so be prepared for that, and to give your best if you show up.
One can see from Andrew’s extensive writings on “breaking muscle” and even via social media, that this is a man who is a very deep thinker and an absolute professional who takes what he does very seriously, some may say a little too seriously and intensely at times, but nevertheless he has a fountain of knowledge and an unquenchable thirst for mastery and is constantly trying to push the boundaries for not just himself but also his clients. What really impresses you over time with Andrew, Shannon and Alby is that this is not just a job for them, it’s their passion, call it their religion, and is the driving force in their lives. They are consistent, and show up ready to go about their business, day-in-day out and are just on another level, or multiple levels above if the truth is known, than most other trainers. I know Andrew makes sure it stays that way, as he is constantly pushing himself through new and different phases of training, all with different goals that change over time, but also through his attendance at a number of internationally renowned courses with world-renowned trainers. He really ‘walks the talk’ and I feel fortunate that he is always looking for ways to incorporate that wisdom gained into workouts for our benefit.
What also strikes me is that they are always watching and taking note and even though they insist on keeping a log of all exercises done, Andrew seems to intrinsically know what sort of weight you should be using and when you are taking it a bit easy. I have been amazed on more than one occasion how he can spot from a distance exactly the weight you are using on the kettlebell when it does not seem obvious to the naked eye. He even knows when you put them back in the wrong spot and is an absolute stickler for a lot of little things. In many of his articles, the timing of them is often uncanny, as they seem to appear just at precisely the right time, when you need it or when you are thinking about that very thing. It’s almost like he has a sixth sense.
When you get through the basics, you find you are constantly being challenged in class. He constantly keeps you accountable and doesn’t let you off the hook easily. If you make a commitment to class, then if you don’t turn up, there will be a text and if you miss a couple of sessions in a row then he will quite likely call. While there is always an emphasis on correct form and technique at all times, the workouts are constantly varied and he loves nothing more than taking you out of your comfort zone and keeping you there for as long as you can. There are so many wicked ways and means he can actually destroy you in class with even basic exercises or combinations but just when he senses you are ‘fried’ and have given it your all, he seems to know intuitively when to relent a little and grant you a little mercy (while still turning the screw). The penny has finally dropped recently that some of these workouts are beyond the physical, that they are not designed to actually be finished, nor does he expect you to get through it, but are designed more so to push you mentally and take you to another level. This is where it really gets into the realm of personal, rather than just physique development.
Although I do my fair share of good-natured complaining, I’ve also come to realize, that there is a lot of thought, call it science, or what you will, in how and why he puts together a workout and nothing is random with Andrew, it’s all thought out and planned for a reason or purpose. You are not flogged to within an inch of your life every session, but that these are carefully cycled and spaced, but are still intuitively adjusted depending on what the conditions are or how clients have pulled up from previous sessions. That said, he loves throwing curve balls at the group when he feels the time is right for a bit of a jolt as he knows our limits better than we do ourselves.
I’ve done CrossFit before and reckon what RPT does is a far more complete and responsible program. Because there is such strong attention given to maintaining good form at all times, I have found there are very few injuries sustained through training. This is not the case with CrossFit, where it is often all about beating your previous time or the competition, often with less than optimal exercise standards. Sure RPT gets competitive, particularly with the team exercises, but it first comes from a perspective of doing your best and doing it right.
I know for a fact from my own personal experience that there is high duty of care shown towards clients. I recently picked up an injury involving a nerve impingement in the upper back – that had nothing to do with RPT by the way – and Andrew took no chances, insisting I deferred my payments and get the all clear from his spinal physio (who is also an absolute master of what he does) before I was allowed to return to training. I have been nursed through too the past couple of weeks carefully and that just reinforced my faith and gratitude that there are absolute quality professionals out there. The pity is that most people often have to look so hard to find them, often through trial and error.
I’ve thought about why it is such a superior program and one of the main reasons is that all facets are covered in a session, or week typically. Although there is no such thing as a typical workout, there are core elements that are always followed. All sessions have a really strong emphasis on a thorough warm up with a focus on stretching and mobility first, in fact Monday’s sessions are completely devoted to mobility alone, which can be extremely testing and can really work up a sweat. The middle phase of a typical workout focuses on the learning and technical side of getting better at a movement, concentrating on strength development or exercise progression, while still ratcheting up the pace. Then the final phase is often an intense thrash on either a kettlebell or free weight exercise combined with timed blocks on the bike, rower or ski equipment that usually ‘smashes’ you to within an inch of your life. This is mixed in with other sessions where the focus is very much on endurance and getting through a prolonged mental test. There is a balance and purpose to it all and it is cleverly constructed on not just a daily basis but also in terms of longer-term cycles.
There are a number of reasons why I love being part of the group sessions at RPT and can’t see myself stopping it. These include:
• It get’s addictive, especially once you get over a few humps in the beginning and start to see some results or improvements. While I’m a long way from where I want to be fitness-wise, I definitely am leaner, stronger, more flexible and can certainly do things that I either couldn’t do, or do nowhere near as effectively or quickly as I can now, ten months ago.
• You don’t have to think too much if you don’t want to (although I often do, way too much). For most though, you can trust that the workout will attend to all your fitness needs, instead of you having to worry which program to follow or when to do it.
• It just gives me a really good feeling that I don’t have to try and work it out any more for myself, that there are absolutely top quality professionals who are there for you, watching your back and finding new ways for you to improve. There are so many sharks and just cra*py service professionals out there and I’m grateful that I’ve finally stumbled on to some great ones that ‘get it’ and go about it the right way. Some people never get to that point and for mine, it’s another part of the puzzle of life worked out and in control (if I stay the course).
• That I can absorb / immerse myself in something for an hour a day and let off some steam without other distractions or demands pulling at me.
• The camaraderie and the affinity you strike up with other people in the group, from all different walks of life, each with a story to tell, but all sharing in a common goal.
• The attention to detail and the lessons that you learn through these guys, the way they break it down & work blo*dy hard, that often translate into growth in other areas of your life. For example, with learning some of these exercises, there will always be sticking points. Applying this to any field, the more advanced you get, the more your smallest vulnerabilities will be magnified. Moving to advanced levels means diagnosing and fixing the most minute weaknesses.
• A completely changed outlook and perspective on the value of stretching, mobility, movement and recovery.
• An awareness that you don’t need to rely on weights exclusively and that bodyweight workouts can be incredibly tough.
• I’ve gone from someone looking for the quick fix, and being more outcomes focused to someone who really enjoys the process now and have re-assessed and revised my health goals to not be so bothered about how much I weigh and what I can lift, but more so, what I can actually functionally do, and whether I can move flexibly and be free of pain or stiffness, or can keep up well with my son and just remain active and dynamic in both mind and body.
• The way that you are always learning stuff about yourself and your body / training techniques as you yourself evolve. That you can get through testing challenges and grow. That said, there is a great balance as it is constantly rammed home that most of it is not rocket science and that one just needs to keep doing the right things consistently and sticking to it and the results will come over time.
So where can Andrew improve as a trainer? That’s a tough one & who is the best is a very subjective thing. From my own perspective, being someone who has pushed a few wrong buttons with Andrew myself over the journey, there are a few minor, small quibbles in the overall scheme of things such as:
• Personally, I feel he can sometimes be a little too hard and unforgiving (publically and privately) & I’ve cursed about him more than once and thought ‘you pr*ck’! That said, I’m sure I’ve frustrated him just as much at times myself.
• I appreciate it can be difficult to do this with the dynamics and constraints of a group class, Andrew could perhaps show a little more patience at times if you are not getting the hang of something in class and can at times seemingly judge someone from his own extremely high standards.
• He could lighten up a little more on occasion as I reckon you still can have fun and get results at the same time;
• He would be an even better trainer in my view if he revealed a little more vulnerability, humor and sparred more playfully at times, and showed a little more ‘light and shade’ as after all there are many ways to ‘skin a cat’ or getting through to clients to effect behavioral change in perhaps more subtle ways and to keep them off guard.
• At times he could have a little more empathy or make allowance for one’s wider circumstances when difficulties crop up in one’s life outside of training that impact on it;
To be honest, I’m nit picking and am trying to write a balanced rather than fawning review here. We all are, what we are and one can’t change their nature to try and appease everyone. Not that Andrew would likely give too much of a damn what anyone thinks of him, from my perspective, the more you get to know him, and when he lets you in that little bit more, the more you like him and respect him. No one is perfect after all. This is his job and he takes it and the business of results very seriously and we should all be grateful for that.
This is a big call, but from my experience over the last 10 months close up, from reading a lot of his articles and having seen various trainers from afar in gyms and other places over the years, and just based on a bit of wisdom I like to think I’ve picked up over the years about life, I would reckon you could make a pretty decent case that Andrew is probably in the top two or three elite trainers in the country. If you are looking for a friend or to worship a guru, to get a little gentle exercise or develop a social network, then Andrew and RPT are almost certainly not for you. However, if you are serious and want to be challenged to get results, to have someone get inside your head, and if you want to be interested and engaged in what you are doing not just physically, but also mentally, and to grow as a person, then look no further than Andrew and the guys at RPT to take you on the journey. I don’t think you will regret it for a moment.
10/10 The search is over
/ Melbourne, Australia
Bored with doing the same personal training fitness program for 2 years, I embarked on an odyssey to find Melbourne's best trainer.
I read numerous fitness articles, scoured forums and the one name that consistently came up was Andrew Read.
Upon our meeting, all my apprehensions of yet another mediocre personal trainer were immediately quashed.
Extremely personable and intelligent, Andrew's passion is immediately obvious and genuine.
I find the weights section in gyms intimidating, however Andrew ensures this isn't the case at RPT and clients are never uncomfortable.
Every client that walks through the door is vetted by Andrew with attitude being a key consideration. This hand picking flows through in training where there is camaraderie and respect among the team.
Be prepared to be pushed and challenged as Andrew gets the best out of you both physically and mentally!
10/10 Simply the best
/ Melbourne, Australia
Having trained at multiple martial arts gyms, a large chain gym and with Andrew for years I can confidentially say that he is without a doubt one of the best trainers in the world. At Read Performance Training real performance is the highest priority, primarily achieved through a progressive combination of bodyweight and mobility exercises, kettlebells, barbells and cardio equipment.
Having spent his whole life as a strength and conditioning coach Andrew's passion, attentiveness and experience are clearly evident leading to personal bests are an everyday occurrence at Read Performance Training. I can't speak highly enough about Andrew and his team and thoroughly look forward to everything that is still to come.
10/10 Profound and elite!
/ Los Angeles, USA
Professional Fitness Trainers always think we know it all! From Body Building, Fitness Competing and Power lifting I was confident I had the goods. Until I was introduced to Dragon Door Kettlebelling in 2006. I was enthralled and heavily intimidated. I bought my bells, DVD's and sought out some of Los Angeles best instructors to learn, train and grow with. In August 2009 I attended the one day workshop in La Jolla, California and knew I wanted to Rkc. But with who? I have trained with so many outstanding trainers from Jack Lalanne to Coach John Wooden. I have an exceptional eye for the elite in athletics.
I waited and trained. And then I heard of this incredible Rkc from Australia and his exceptional style and ability to train in ways I have only dreamed of. Australia brings to the world some of the top performance trainers and athletes globally...Andrew Read is extraordinary personified. He is a phenomena and also a downright salt of the earth kind of guy and 1st class human being. When I heard he would be conducting an HKC workshop here in Los Angeles I was ecstatic! I also knew that his exquisite and discerning eye would make or break my success at passing my HKC. Andrew presents himself not only as warm, witty and easy going, he also has a profound eye and teaching technique that brought my true athletic ability to a completely new level! Both with his incredible sense of humor and warm compassion he brought the best out of me. His keen eye and attention to my TGU was groundbreaking for me. My swing has taken on a completely different feel and my strength increased dramatically at the workshop. The truly glorious and crowning moment came when I had my one one interview with Andrew and he asked, "what do you believe your require improving?" For a moment I thought I failed. I wasn't sure I said. And then Andrew Read with his all knowing smile said, "why are you picking up those little bells, your a strong woman go heavy!" "You passed, now I want you to go heavier!" I am doing just that! Since this experience I have the opportunity to stay connected with Andrew consistently. He is supporting and encouraging my training on a very detailed level toward achieving my Rkc. Mostly, a fantastic friendship has been forged and anyone who has the honor and privilege to certify with Andrew will receive the most elite training you could ever ask for. Read just rocks!!!
10/10 Exceptional Training Instruction
/ San Francisco, CA, U.S.A.
Andrew Read is extremely knowledgeable, supportive, professional, and approachable. I first heard of Andrew from reading articles about him on Dragon Door’s instructor profiles. The more articles I read, and the more I learned about his training background the more I became impressed. I have been working out with kettlebells for about two years, learning from DVDs and books. I really wanted to improve my skills, form, and techniques, so I signed up for a HKC taught by Andrew Read. Learning and listening to Andrew exceeded all my expectations! Andrew covered everything that the workshop outlined and more, going into details and explanations that made everything understandable, and made me perform better and smarter. Andrew’s patience and understanding of everybody’s different skill set made learning and the HKC experience the best it could have ever been. The experience I gained from Andrew has motivated me to work out with kettlebells even more than before. I feel very fortunate to have experienced kettlebell training from Andrew Read.
10/10 Super Helpful (and very funny!)
/ San Diego, USA
Andrew Read was the lead instructor for my HKC certification course. I have to admit that I was nervous to have him watching my every move; his reputation preceded him! However, I found Andrew to be extremely approachable and very genuine in his instructing. You could tell he really wanted everyone in the course to succeed, while maintaining the standards that Dragon Door has set out for their certifications. Not only was he very knowledgeable and provided great training ideas and suggestions, but he kept the certification fun and moving along at a good pace, which is key for an 8 hour day of working out and learning! He certainly gave me the confidence to pursue my RKC!
10/10 To all prospective RKC's
/ Melbourne, Australia
Andrew is the best kettlebell instructor in Australia pure and simple.
If you're serious about doing the RKC, you would be doing yourself a great disservice by not working with him in some capacity. He knows the RKC system inside out, and what it takes to be physically, mentally and technically prepared.
I trained with Andrew for 9 months leading up to my RKC and through his instruction and guidance I went into the RKC knowing exactly what would be expected of me and confident that I could meet those expectations. This meant I could focus on getting the most out the weekend and not be stressed, worn out or overwhelmed.
Thank you to Andrew and the team at Read Performance Training Team for helping me achieve my goal of passing the RKC.
10/10 Old school service with up-to-date instruction
/ Melbourne, Australia
I had been training with kettlebells for around 4 years, self-taught from Pavel, cotter, mahler & maxwell books & online content. I used bells as a supplementary tool to my much loved barbell training, and I always looked to travel to the RKC abroad as a personal goal.
I first met Andrew at the HKC in Melbourne, together with Shaun Cairns. It's fair to say I thought it'd be a breeze but I battled through the intensive day and scraped my way through. The level of detail that was expected in each move and the unforgiving push towards both perfection and a complete understanding gave me confidence I was training with the right guy. Clearly it was going to be a journey...
It was then not until I saw the Melbourne RKC event released that I got serious about training with Andrew, attending the monthly RKC prep classes as well as training 4 x per week in the personalised group sessions. Andrew and his fantastic team of Shannon and Alby prepared our group flawlessly for the RKC, which I would have never been ready for otherwise. Andrew prepares you beyond what is required at the RKC which I have no doubt is the reason why our group performed so well at the event.
Andrew and his team at Dragon Door Aust share the same attitude to training - they are all extremely knowledgeable, extremely capable, motivating and uncompromising in their efforts to improve every single client. The no-nonsense approach is service at its best, and you get to hear it from a bloke who's been there before and is always pushing to be at the forefront of his field. If you want to be told what you want to hear, go somewhere else.
Fast forward to now and I've achieved my goal for the year of becoming RKC certified, and onto my next challenge. I'm still throwing bells around at his gym, and I'm in the best shape of my life. I cannot recommend Andrew and his team highly enough.
10/10 He's tough but he'll get the best out of you...
/ Camperdown, Victoria, Australia
I first crossed paths with Andrew when he taught at a Convention in Sydney a couple of years ago. What stood out the most was he was teaching things that NO ONE else was teaching and everything he said made complete sense.
After returning home, I Googled Andrew and booked in for a one on one session ( Keep in mind when I first met Andrew, I couldn't do a TGU as my shoulders were so jammed and an ankle injury had left me with pretty poor mobility. ) A workshop or two later I decided that the HKC would be the best thing for me to do. Andrew was instrumental in getting me training with his Head of PT (RKC II / CK-FMS Shannon Scullin) and participating in workshops he was running. I had no hesitation in travelling 5 hours round trip to do a one hour PT session, then a group session/workshop with Andrew. I was keeping a promise I'd made to myself a few years ago to only learn from the best.
Fast forward 12+ months and I was booked in to do the first ever RKC in Melbourne, Aus.
Andrew's workshops were brilliant in preparing us for the 3 day certification. He ensured we all had our own programs to follow, he'd email with feedback and suggestions and the thing that stands out to me the most was how much his own teaching and knowledge keeps improving. Who'd want to train with someone that refuses to keep updating their own knowledge?
He's tough, he's honest and you can be sure he'll get the best out of you, and I don't believe there's too many other training facilities in our country where alot of the clients are personal trainers training along side non-trainers. If the truth be known, his long time clients could teach alot of PT's a thing or two about kettlebell training.
10/10 Train with the BEST to be the BEST
/ Melbourne, Australia
As a personal trainer I refuse to be coached by anyone else, other than Andrew Read. Training with Andrew has not only been a good physical challenge, but a massive learning curve as well. Each session I learn so much knowledge that I can go back and apply, not only to my own training but with my clients as well.
After finishing my first marathon on August 26th and the RKC being on the 23rd November, some would think that prepping for the RKC wasn’t enough time but working with Andrew has been nothing but the best, he has given me a program to quickly adapt too making me stronger and ready for the RKC, supporting me the whole way through.
This year training with Andrew, has hands down been one of the best investments for myself and no matter what my next fitness goal is for the future, I know I will continue to train with Andrew.
Andrew is a wealth of knowledge and experience. For anyone prepping for the RKC I highly recommend Andrew and wouldn’t recommend any other trainer for the job because when it comes to training kettle bells or trainers getting trained, Andrews the man for the job. His style of training is personalised to the individual, his passion for his work, the industry and upholding the very highest standard shows in everything he does.
Not only has Andrew been a great support this year through my training for my marathon and RKC, he has been a great mentor and teacher. He was my personal training teacher in 2008 and he was one of the most influential people in my life that helped shape the trainer and the person that I am today. I’m very grateful for all of Andrew’s teachings and I know that I will always continue learning from him. Andrew is always learning and evolving, he lives what he teaches and that is what makes him brilliant and stand out from the rest.
In all Honesty you would be stupid not to train with Andrew and his team at Hard style Physical Training. They will exceed all your expectations.
10/10 Don't stress! - He never smiles.
/ Perth, Australia
I had used and instructed kettlebells for many years before I learnt about Dragondoor and the RKC system.
Whilst on operational deployment in Afghanistan I had become intrigued with the RKC and consequently researched everything available on the subject. It quickly became apparent that no one had more to offer than Andrew Read and accordingly I booked myself on the first ever Australian RKC more than 12 months in advance. On my return to Australia I rang Andrew to basically introduce myself and discuss some training ideas in preparation for the RKC. Within minutes I liked the bloke and knew that I needed to know more of what he had to offer, so I booked a flight and flew across the country to train with him. After just a few hours I learnt more about kettlebells than all the years leading up to that day.
Since that time, I've maintained contact with Andrew who has consistently impressed me with his depth of knowledge and ability to improve my own skills, such that I can now pass those skills onto others. To that end, I have since visited Andrew on several occasions for various courses and training sessions; no mean feat as he is more than 3,000km away!
I now operate my own training facility, the success of which is due in no small part to the skills I have acquired from Andrew. It's my opinion that there is no one better qualified, more passionate and skilled at passing on knowledge and how it can be best applied than Andrew Read.
10/10 Your life
/ Sydney, Australia
Choosing to train with Andrew ( and Shannon ) was one of the best decisions I have made of recent times.
I was conscious of not being physically fit, had old sports injuries,I was carrying alot more weight than I wanted and was hesitant in starting something new like "kettlebells".
Andrew was crystal clear in all of his explanations from the first session, always gave a thorough answer to all of my questions and the right level of encouragement and correction of technique.
From his years of experience the programme he tailored for me meant that I left each session having being challenged and physically worked out without any problems of having aggravated old injuries.
In a surprisingly short time I felt and looked very different and started to receive compliments on my new appearance. With the change in appearance came forth a new level of confidence that was part of the reason for both rapid and multiple promotions within the company I was working for.
Andrew has a great sense of humour which helps you relax between sets and has attracted to him other clients that create a very energised and inspiring environment in his gym.
The more time I spent with Andrew the more I came to appreciate his depth of his knowledge and his passion and sincerity for helping people achieve their physical goals with kettlebells.
I would highly recommend Andrew and his kettlebell training to any one, of any age and I am sure his expertise will make a profound difference both in your health and in your life.
10/10 No bells and whistles.
/ Melbourne, Australia
I first found out about kettle bells 2 years ago i purchased Enter the kettle bell and a 20kg bell.I started working through the progressions i was loving the results strength and conditioning in one simple tool i was hooked,then it all went pear shaped i had aggravated an old injury.I realised then that i needed some quality coaching before i started training again. It did not take long for me to find Dragon Door Australia and Andrew Read.I was impressed with what i saw online and had very high expectations.And when i got the chance to participate in the Beginner work shop i was not disappointed there where no bells and whistles no nonsense.For starters the gym itself is perfect for training nice and open,lots of kettle bells,pull up bars bars and bar bells.Both Andrew and Shannon have a great eye for picking up flaws in your form ,there instruction is easy yo follow and to the point.I would recommend any one who is starting in Kettle Bell training to first work with a quality coach like Andrew and Shannon.Thank you for a great 3hrs.I,ll be back.
10/10 Hardstyle Physical Training and Kettlebells.
/ Melbourne, Australia
5 years ago I picked up my first kettlebell, I purchased the books, did a weekend workshop or two & trained to numerous DVD's. In March this year I discovered Hardstyle Physical Training & Andrew Read & I then discovered exactly just how little I knew about kettlebell training.
I've watched PT's at mainstream gyms getting their clients to swing & there were few occasions where I didn't cringe at the sight of poor technique & inappropriate weight. I thought I knew what I was doing, I was confident in my ability & technique. Then Andrew Read stood next to me & it started....I began to realise just how little I knew. Even the technique for my base movement of swinging was far from what it should have been, not to mention an injury waiting to happen.
Never have I met anyone like Andrew Read or a gym that is anything like Hardstyle Physical Training. I walk in to my own personal program written by Andrew himself, my program caters for me, what I want to achieve, what I need to improve & after a recent car crash my program was amended to take into consideration my injuries. The local gym, the Les Mills instructor or Cross Fit staff wouldn't have done this for me & most PT's out there wouldn't have known where to start writing me a safe program.
It's structured so that I'm getting personal training at a fraction of the cost, Andrew's knowledge is endless & it doesn't take long to realise your training under the best of the best. The gym sessions are a small class atmosphere, but I'm watched like a hawk & pushed when needed. Andrew is always available to answer my questions & give me advice. I'm surrounded by people of all shapes, sizes & age, all doing a workout specifically for them. There are no mirrors, no guys carrying imaginary watermelons, no distracting music or posters trying to sell me the newest craze.
It's now August, I'm ~8kg's lighter, in fact I haven't been at this weight since 2000 & can see vast improvements in my strength, as well as my cardio. My kettlebells at home are obsolete, as they are too light for me. I'm pressing, snatching & swinging heavier than I ever have.
If you want to take your training seriously & if you haven't trained to used KB's under Andrew or a RKC instructor get down to Hardstyle Physical Training.
10/10 You cant fly with Eagles if you Train with Turkeys
/ Melbourne, Australia
If I had have met Andrew before I retired from bike racing, I might have added Olympic success (not just squad) to my resume, not only National Championship. Since he has been structuring my training, for a short period of time (now as a Dressage rider), I have realised how much I was doing wrong as a professional athlete whilst under the scrutiny of AIS and VIS at the time....Oh what could have been....
So my advice to anyone considering Strength and Conditioning training, dont waste your money with getting zero results at an average gym with a useless Personal Trainer. Bite the bullet and commit to Andrew. You may not like what he says but you will love the results you get both from a strength and aesthetic perspective..
10/10 Awsum Workshop
/ Sunshine Coast QLD, Australia
I attended the "Beginner Kettle bell Workshop" in Melbourne on Sat 28 July,and was very lucky to be trained by not one but two "RKC11" instructors. I have never attended a Pt session before, but at age 66 I had been playing with kettle bells (and after attending ) truly realized how little I knew.But the Internet being available to everybody I began looking for some advice, I am very pleased to have found "The Dragon Door Website"The minute I saw the Workshop I knew I was going to attend.On entering the gym I was impressed with the size, lack of clutter, and the greeting from Shannon. From Andrews first words it was obvious to everyone who attended, here was a man who could not only talk the talk but walk the walk . His expert instruction with Shannon demonstrating all exercises, made it clear how to perform the exercises with proper form. Both Andrew and Shannon moved through the participants giving gentle but firm corrections. The amount of knowledge Andrew has to pass on is evident in Shannon the first female to pass RKC11. Her instruction and encouragement through the day made for an enjoyable but exhausting afternoon,after throwing in an extra 50 swings whenever we made a mistake.Andrew spoke to every participant personally after the event, and spent extra time with me one on one to fix my posture problems. I hope to someday pass the "RKC" and I know for one I will be seeking Andrews professional help. I cannot praise Andrew and Shannon enough for their expert coaching on the day, their professionalism and knowledge shine through in everything they do and say. So thanks Guys for a fantastic workshop and I wish you both the best for the future.
10/10 No flash or flair, but plenty of results.
/ Melbourne, Austraila
One thing that strikes you upon first entering Dragon Door Australia, is just how unlike a regular gym this training centre is. Here, you will not find - wall to wall mirrors, rows of dumbbells, exercise machines, a deafening stereo system, pumped up douchebags grunting loudly while working chest and biceps for the fifth time this week or anything else you normally associate with a typical gym.
What you will find is a group of people of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds swinging, lifting and pressing various sized kettlebells, and the occasional barbell (deadlifts are your friend). All are focused on their training. Egos and judgement are nowhere to be found here. Just effort and work.
Andrew Read has taken the smart approach to group training and personalised it. Yes, we train as a group at set times, but everyone, yes EVERYONE has their own personalised program, at no extra cost. Why pay to go to a gym, and then pay extra for a personal trainer? It doesn't make sense. And this approach, combined with Andrew's extensive knowledge is why Dragon Door clients get results from their training, and they get them fast.
Your training needs are different to mine. Your goals are different to mine. They're different to the other clients, Andrew caters for this, and hand writes individual programs for all of his clients. As long as you put the work in, you will get results, no excuses. Personally, my swings, get-ups, presses and deadliest have all skyrocketed in a matter of weeks, and from looking around at the other clients, it's fair to say they are all improving too.
So if you want good effective training, with a program that caters for you and your needs, written by one of the most knowledgable trainers I've come across, speak to Andrew and get on board. Your body and health will thank you.
9/10 Professional with real world knowledge
/ Melbourne, Australia
I recently completed a twelve week stint of kettlebell training with Andrew (and Shannon) at Dragon Door and I left thoroughly impressed. It’s great to see there are health/fitness professionals who actually live and breathe what they teach.
I learned something in every training session! Andrew has a real knack for customising exercises to suit your needs, and being able to pick areas for improvement. My strength AND speed improved dramatically. I look forward to training with Andrew and the team again at the HKC in August 2012.
10/10 ...What do you want to be? RKC!!!
/ The Woodlands, TX, U.S.A.
Like most people that have written reviews on here already, I recently went through the RKC level 1 course earlier this year and had the privilege of having Andrew as my Team Leader. Arriving the first day and going through the volume of exercises and information we had to endure, I knew this course was not going to be easy to say the least. After all jokes and introductions were put aside we went to work. As we started practicing the first 3 exercises covered in the course, I remember Andrew pacing back and forth around myself and other team members giving us prompt and precise directions (despite the accent) to follow. With Andrew's knowledge and expertise at my disposal, I would be the only person to blame if I didn't understand a queue or correctly perform any exercise to the best of my abilities. Andrew's professionalism showed through at all times whether it was a dose of "Tough Love" or a much needed pep talk to keep us going. To say Andrew is a valuable asset to the Dragon Door family is an understatement, if his resume doesn't in the very least impress you, surely following his guidance through your own "RKC experience" will! I guarantee it!!! -One of the guys from Texas!
10/10 My kettlebell journey
/ Melbourne, Australia
Training kettlebells with Andrew Read - I have learned so much from him, some of it quite surprising, and I cannot thank him enough.
When I came to train with Andrew, I had just started to improve after a debilitating bulged disc that had left me on the verge of back surgery after 3 rounds of epidurals. I was so broken at first I could hardly handle swinging with an 8kg bell. Initially Andrew taught me the basics and concentrated on getting my strength up. From there he moved me on in leaps and bounds, but always with my health and well being in mind.
In addition to fixing my back issues and now being able to squat a 28kg bell, I have lost a staggering 14kg.
The support and tuition I received from Andrew was second to none.
I have tried PTs and gyms before - but they are seriously just a pale comparison. If you have ever thought about starting the journey to a stronger and healthier you - then Andrew is the person to contact.
10/10 Expert Training Guidance
/ Melbourne, Australia
I have been training at Dragon Door Australia under the expert guidance of Andrew Read for almost two years and in that time have achieved more than ever before in my health and fitness. Andrew understands my motivations and goals and works with me to achieve these while challenging me to extend myself to reach new goals I never thought were possible.
When you train with Andrew, be prepared to re-learn all the things you thought you knew about health and fitness. Andrew has a wealth of valuable knowledge and invests his time to continuously increase his knowledge of the science and technology of health and fitness. Learning the skill and technique of kettlebells has captured my attention as it provides me with variety to maintain my interest and has enabled me to achieve fitness and strength results that keep me coming back for more.
With the support of Andrew, I recently passed my HKC, which I thoroughly enjoyed and would highly recommend to not only fitness professionals but also people like me seeking a personal challenge. It's was very rewarding to participate and achieve this certification. I have now enrolled in the RKC and it is my confidence in Andrew as a great personal trainer that gives me the self-assurance to take this next challenge.
Andrew lives and breathes health and fitness and I value his expertise and advice in these areas. I would highly recommend Andrew as a first class personal trainer who will work with you to achieve your personal health and fitness goals.
10/10 GATEWAY TO EXCELLENCE
/ Darwin, Australia
Andrew has been a gateway into the world of excellence for me. He models professionalism and the never ending search for perfection- The Kettlebells are just the tool he uses to re-tune your body. Basically, through attending HKC, RKC and combat conditioning workshops I learnt from him how to reprogram my entire bodies movement and strength, and showed me an actual easy to follow way to get stronger.
I have gone from 8-12kg KBs to 32kg over 30 months thanks to the interest shown in my development. Andrew is that good he could afford to be rude to you but he is very humble and genuinely interested in passing on knowldege. He is a credit to his former Army training.
At 41, and still in the ADF, it is usually the time of your career you are broken, tired and losing everthing you had as a young man (Strength, flexibility, hitting power). I can truthfully say that I am moving better and lifting more than I did when I was young.
However, I must caveat what I say here because you do have to toughen up to train with Andrew. If you have the tenacity to make a decision and train hard, and take tough love - Then Andrew will cannonball you to excellence. If you are lazy and want a leotard wearing PT to tell you how good you are - Look somewhere else.
10/10 My coach
/ Perth, Australia
I started to become interested in Kettlebells sometime in 2009 I played around with them, taught myself some stuff from what I had seen in books but it wasn’t until I met Andrew for the first time at a fitness conference in Perth that I really started to get hooked. I did two of his workshops ‘core training for martial artist’ (I think it was called) and the ‘Turkish Get-Up’. I thought to myself, this guy knows his stuff. After the Get-up workshop I said to him that I would like to learn more about kettlebells. He simply said check out the Dragon Door web site. So I did, I started reading lots of articles, buying their books and dvd’s, I also found Andrews blog and read all his articles on kettlebells and strength training. It opened up a whole new world to my lack of knowledge and I have been in the fitness industry since 2004, I was thinking why wasn’t I taught all this when I did my Cert III and Cert IV. I started to get excited about my job again, all this new knowledge and information I was like a kid in a candy store. This is what I have been looking for, for a long time.
To cut a long story short my goal was to attend the RKC Sept 2011 but first I decided to fly to Melbourne to attend the HKC in March 2011. Again Andrew wowed me with his incredible knowledge and I kept thinking if I get half as good as him I’d be so happy. I passed the HKC and I was booked and ready for the RKC. I was already training with an RKC trainer in Perth but I felt like I needed to follow a program from someone who has sent many people over to the US and all successfully passed the course. So I called Andrew and asked him for help, and did he ever. All his programs that I followed were incredible; I new at that moment that I was going to pass the RKC before I even got there. It was Andrews’s ongoing support that made me feel so relaxed, I knew I was in good hands. I traveled two more times to the east coast to have one on one sessions with him before heading off to the US. When I got to Chicago, I was a bit nervous but it was more towards meeting new people and Pavel, it certainly wasn’t because I thought I was under prepared. I had the most awesome weekend, I was fit enough, strong enough both physically and mentally so when it came to testing time, I thought bring it on! Guess what the result was?? I passed and all thanks to Andrew!!
I am still training under Andrew’s guidance, following his brilliant programs, we are now working towards making me stronger, which I am loving! I still make regular trips over east to have PT sessions with him and also to catch up with the Shannon and gang.
Andrew is not only an awesome coach, and my mentor but I am proud to say that he is also my friend.
10/10 Great Instructor!
/ The Woodlands, USA
I recently had the pleasure of having Andrew as my team leader at the RKC level 1 cert in St. Paul, MN. Andrew's knowledge, candor, and humor made RKC a truly great experience. As someone who has been in the fitness industry for over 12 years I can tell you Andrew is top notch! Andrew Read is a valuable asset to the RKC community and the type of instructor who makes others want to be more involved with RKC.
10/10 So you think you know Kettlebells?
/ The Woodlands, TX, USA
Being in the personal training industry, you find out one way or another that your success will ultimately depend on your attention to details. I prepared and prepared for my RKC doing what I thought was correct technique -- increasing sets, increasing reps, increasing weight, progressing myself to where I felt comfortable going into my RKC weekend. Then...
...day one of my RKC weekend happened.
I found out that about the only thing I was good at, was doing kettlebell exercises incorrectly. I was getting worked both mentally and physically. To say I felt defeated and hopeless was a huge understatement. I felt like a fighter just waiting to get knocked out so it could all be over with. Fortunately, my RKC Team Leader Andrew Read was there to help offering great attention to detail and motivation as well. When we started to get my technique straightened out, I was getting more benefit for my body out of sets of 5 repetitions with a 16 kg kettlebell than I was in my previous training of sets of 60 repetitions with a 32 kg kettlebell!
Two thoughts immediately came to mind upon realizing this fact: 1. How many people out there are wasting their time and efforts just as much, if not more, than I was? 2. If anyone has the chance to work with Andrew Read for 5 minutes, DO IT!!! His superior attention to detail and coaching skills helped me pass the RKC after I felt like a complete failure on day one. And if that wasn’t enough, Andrew gave one of the better motivational speeches I’ve ever heard at the precise time when our team and myself needed it the most.
If you’re anything like me, you’re always looking to get the most out of your training. By now, I’m sure you’re wondering if you can afford to work with Andrew, but the question you should really be asking yourself is can you afford not to?
RKC, CSCS, USAW-SPC, PES, CES, NASM-CPT
/ Canberra, Australia
I was lucky enough to come across Andrew and Dragon Door last year and have to say that it's been nothing short of life changing. Like most people when they get to their mid 30's I had some mileage on the clock and a history of various injuries. On top of that I work in a job where being fit and strong is a necessity. If I’m out of shape and injured, I’m a potential liability to my workmates.
I'd become more and more frustrated over the years by my inability to rehab the injuries that I had and was starting think that I’d just have to accept the fact that this was just the way it was, and I’d have to learn to live with pain and dysfunction. I’d spent literally thousands of dollars with physio’s and sports Dr’s and gym programs over the years with little to no effect. Then I heard about Kettlebells. In just a few weeks training with Andrew I noticed results. My shoulder was better and then I could squat on my reconstructed knee without pain (something I hadn’t done since an ACL reco in 1999!!!!) Bottom line... KB’s work!
On top of all that, Andrew is the fount of all training knowledge. His knowledge, commitment and integrity are such a breath of fresh air in an industry overflowing with underqualified, inexperienced pretenders just trying to make a buck.
If you want to get results (whatever your goals) Andrew is the “guru” to see.
10/10 Simply the best
/ Melbourne, Australia
I've probably mentioned this one thousand times to family and friends... "Andrew Read is bar far the best trainer in Australia hands down"
I've known Andrew for about 6 years now and I can honestly say that I wouldn't be where I am today without him.
He has not only provided me with infomation overload regarding kettlebell training and even just training in general. But he has also helped me from a business standpoint as well since I PT also.
Andrew has, and always will be, my 'go to' guy whenever I have a question about training, rehab, prehab, business, movement and kettlebells.
I cannot recommend this guy enough.
Thanks again mate.
10/10 Lessons Learned
/ Sandringham, Australia
I think I'd tried almost every type of group class, fitness fad, and diet I could think of, as well as being a member of at least five gyms, and training with three different personal trainers all within the past 10 years. As a youngster I was a State level swimmer and competitive lifesaver, before kids I was into triathlons and open water swimming, and after child number two I ran a marathon, so training hard for long hours had been second nature to me. But there I as at age 40 overweight and unfit. My weight had yo-yo'd over the years as I took on one crazy "get fit quick!" campaign after another, and ended up at 79.5kgs -the heaviest I'd ever been! I wasn't happy about it, but as a full-time mother I had a hundred excuses.” I have a young baby; I’m sleep deprived; my husband travels a lot; I have a three young kids to organize; I just don’t have time to train enough !”
Enter Dragon Door Australia. I'd done a few group training sessions, and liked the casual atmosphere, the lack of pretention, and the training style. Andrew is a surprisingly gentle teacher. He may look tough, but he doesn't bark orders at his clients. And he explains the logic behind his methods. And he’s not trying to get you to do stuff HE can’t already do 100 times better! And he's relentless! Timing being as it is, I signed up for Andrew's "Get Sexy for Summer" -a 16 week plan. That was 11.5 weeks ago, and in that time I've learned a LOT about my body and how it works from Andrew. The most surprising thing to me is that I don't have to work out like a maniac 7 days a week, or starve myself to get results.
All of the "campaigns" and "boot-camps" I've tried in the past have really just been a money spinner for the gyms in question. "The more you train (i.e. the more you spend at our gym), the better the result!". Andrew quickly put paid to that idea by telling me that 3 quality sessions a week is enough. He actively discouraged me from doing more sessions than that, which shows considerable integrity as after all, more sessions = more money for him too! The difference I think is that Andrew's focus is on long term results, and overtraining MAY provide a "quick fix", but it's not sustainable! He's too honorable to try to gouge his clients! Andrew focuses on helping his clients get the very best out of their training sessions. Lesson learned: Quality trumps quantity with exercise too! That's why my weight increased in the past after I slowed down the exercise.
Andrew's knowledge of nutrition, fuelling the body, and his very non-judgemental approach to other people's lifestyles is another major point in his favour. When we started keeping food diaries he provided a strict list of diet do's and don’ts, but didn’t try to force recipes, meal replacements, or supplements onto me. He also shakes things up every month or so, forcing you to change your diet, which in turn stops boredom setting in. And again his food logic is sound. Lesson learned: diets are pointless. Eating plans that that are flexible, but which follow rules, work because you can sustain them long term!
So 11.5 weeks into "Sexy for Summer" and at last weigh in I was 68.5kgs. Thanks to Andrew I'm fitting into the size 10 clothes that have been buried at the back of my cupboard since my triathlon days. I still have a way to go, and of course I need to keep the weight off, but with Andrew as a trainer I can't see it coming back. Because the main difference between Andrew and the other trainers I've tried is that Andrew doesn't let you see excuses...just solutions. Lesson learned.
10/10 Deep Understanding delivers Massive Results!
/ Melbourne, Australia
Andrew knows his stuff; kettlebells, functional movement, programming and client psychology. When I walked into to his DD gym on August 15th of this year I was 122kg and an overshadow of my former athletic self (National Level Swimmer). Within the first 10 minutes I knew Andrew would be the right trainer for me - he didn't judge me for where I was and he subtly challenged me which got me to pay attention. Andrew always challenges me in my PT sessions and knows the right time to make me step it up a notch.
13 and a half weeks later and at last weigh in I was down to 100kg - a whopping 22kg disappeared because of Andrew and his team's training, PT sessions, programming and nutritional support as part of the "16 Week Get Sexy for Summer" program. I know that Andrew isn't done with me yet with 4 and 1/2 weeks to go...someone needs to take me clothes shopping! Whilst stripping the weight Andrew has helped me at least Double my Warm Up KB for Swings and Get Ups, from 16kg (which had me sore in the first two weeks) to now effortlessly using a 32kg KB in warm up.
Beyond the results Andrew has helped to deliver he has re-framed my perspective of what it takes to remain healthy and strong for life. Before I met Andrew, because of my competitive sport background, I believed I had to train 15 to 20 hours a week to get similar results (physically at least), as when i was swimming. As life, work, family and children become of prime importance and I am not a professional this was not possible - until I discovered Dragon Door Australia.
Thanks Andrew - I look forward to many more years of training with you and your team.
10/10 Making Australia even Harder(style)
/ Perth, Australia
Andrew just keeps on bringing better workshops to us in the land Down Under!
I am now training up to attend April's RKC and headed over to Melbourne to participate in the workshops that followed on from the HKC. There is such a high level of information, encouragement and advice at any of these workshops. Being able to train under Andrew and the Dragon Door banner is such a treat!
Andrew makes learning and practice enjoyable and challenging while offering corrections as necessary. He is very welcoming and approachable, will definitely be booking in to do a one-on-one session with him next time I am headed over to Melbourne!!
10/10 So good now my whole family trains with Andrew!!
/ Melbourne, Australia
I started training with Andrew about a year and a half ago and I have never felt better.
I am a dancer and had a serious back injury which keep reoccurring so my physiotherapist recommended I see Andrew. I had never heard of kettlebells before so wasn't sure what I was getting myself into. I will never forget the shock on my mums face the first time I saw Andrew and realised just how limited some of my movement was, but also how simple it was to correct by someone with Andrew's knowledge.
I soon grew to love training and although very hard at times, Andrew constantly kept me motivated and drilled my technique. I was always fit, what I didn't realise was that I lacked a lot of strength particularly in my core and upper body, which is why I was constantly hurting myself with the demands of dancing.
Since I met Andrew my back barely bothers me at all, and my dancing has improved dramatically as well. I feel healthier, more evenly toned and generally much fitter and stronger. I can't imagine ever wanting to do any other type of gym training, in fact I raved about it so much my whole family (mum, dad and brother) now come along to training with me, we have never looked back.
10/10 Knowledge Creates Power!
/ Withcott, QLD, Australia
I had felt that my snatch lacked power for some time. Andrew assessed and nailed the problem within 5 reps! The Martial Power workshop was awesome! Through the utilisation of neuromuscular techniques, participants were able to noticeably increase striking speed and therefore power! I have already utilised a number of these techniques at my dojo with great effect. Given that Kyokushin is a power karate, this workshop has added more grunt! Andrew demonstrates a great depth of knowledge and humility. As an Accredited Exercise Physiologist, much of what passes for continuing education does not have the depth of practical knowledge, common sense or application of functional physiology/ anatomy that I experienced in Andrew's workshops. I look forward to working with Andrew in the future and will unreservedly recommend his workshops and services to members of my profession and those in the fitness industry who want real, functional applications of exercise science to use with their clientèle.
10/10 Awesome Strength Coach!
/ Denver, USA
I met Andrew when we both assisted for Team Engum in April of 2011. Andrew has a huge personality, knew everyone, and it was a bit intimidating for me. Honestly, I'm generally skeptical of the 'popular kids' and I was worried that he would be there just to have fun.
It didn't take long to figure out that the charismatic, cool-kid from Australia was NOT all talk and that my first impression couldn't have been more wrong. Andrew is a true professional in every way- he knows his stuff, he's a fantastic instructor, and he's physically capable. Andrew lives and breathes this stuff and he takes it seriously.
I found out later that he is awesome at writing strength programs! From the other side of the world, he coached me and helped me peak for the Iron Maiden challenge. With Andrew's guidance, I became the third woman ever to complete the challenge- I walked in there confident in my training and I couldn't have done that without his coaching. Thanks Andrew- you're the best!
9/10 Running, WOW
/ Melbourne, Australia
I am a big guy and when I run I will end up at the physio with foot pain. He suggested doing a session with a running coach. So I did one session with Andrew and was amazing how much I learnt. After about 20 minutes was moving faster than I have in a long time and it felt great.
Obvious that fitness is a passion of his not a job.
Will make you better than you ever thought you could be.
10/10 Feeling Great, Stringer, More Confident
/ Melbourne, Australia
I started using kettlebells in my local gym, really enjoyed it but realised that my trainer was not that clued up, so after some research I found Dragon Door Australia and so began my new journey in hardstyle kettlebells. DDA lived up to its reputation and I have not looked back.
I had high expectations due to the reputation that DDA had, but I was amazed at the dedication and knowledge that Andrew Read had to offer and how quickly he could make changes in me through the FMS which in turn produced great results - things I thought I would never have been able to achieve.
I have absolutely loved my training at DDA. Andrew has that special gift of keeping you motivated, ensuring that you are always improving you technique AND making you want to go that one step further every time, Andrew and his team simply inspire you to be better.
I know that at DDA I am learning with the best in the country, I know that I will never be allowed to reach a plateau or rest on my last accomplishment. I know that
Andrew's immense passion and huge wealth of knowledge will help me reach my goals and get me into the best shape I have ever been in. I love DDA!!
In the short time I have been going to DDA, I have seen huge improvements - my shape has changed, I have become more toned, I move better and
have improved my strength 10 fold - all this in just a month of training with Andrew and this is just the beginning!
Anyone who is serious about keeping fit, strong and healthy should not waste their time on wasteful gym memberships or running/jogging themselves stupid and just try out DDA - you will be hooked and won't regret it.
10/10 No other trainer comes close......
/ Melbourne, Australia
It’s hard to put words on paper that do Andrew justice as the brilliant trainer that he is.
In January 2010 I met and started training with Andrew. At the time I was fresh out of cert III and IV in fitness and eager to try my hand at as many different types of training as possible.
From the word “go” he was not only a superb trainer but an amazing mentor. Explaining and demonstrating technique in ways that were easily understood and applied by all, always pushing me that one step further, to train harder, to educate myself and be a better trainer and always, without hesitation, willing to share his experience and expertise.
Since commencing training with Andrew I have grown immensely as a trainer. He has mentored me through completion of the HKC, RKC, CK FMS & RKC II.
Andrew motivates and inspires me to be the best I can possibly be every day. The passion he shows for his work is almost overwhelming . I highly recommend him to anyone looking for a trainer.
10/10 One on one session with Andrew is a must do!
/ Melbourne, Australia
I have have been using kettlebells for about a year, read the books, watched the DVD's, felt pretty good, saw some reasonable gains and increase in fitness but knew there was something missing so I bit the bullet and paid for a one on one session with Andrew.
Regarding kettlebells It is the best thing I have done, fine tuning my technique, identifying my weakneses and improving the basics.
I booked in for a group class the night after the one on one session and found that just as beneficial. New ideas for my own workouts, as well as further guidance on technique which you can never really get enough of.
If you are considering it I advise that you book in and do a one on one session ASAP.
I am a hard marker but I am trying to think what could have been improved and nothing is coming to me so 10 out of 10 it is.
10/10 Committed asset
By Tim McPhee
/ Rochester, MN
I had the pleasure of working next to Andrew at the 29 April RKC as we were both assistants. I had met him before at the Marketing Mastermind in Feb 2011. What struck me about him was his intensity. You would probably expect that from a national level athlete and military operator. But, along with that was a genuine concern to help those he came in contact with. Help ( read knowledge) that was developed through years of competing and serving. So, coupled with a no nonsense, cut to the chase work ethic delivered with a sense of humor, Andrew is well on his way to becoming a great asset to the kettlebell community.
10/10 Terrific Teacher!
By Sean Leffler
/ Los Alamos, NM
Just wanted to take a moment and say how great Andrew is at teaching kettlebells!
I was fortunate enough to have him as my Assistant Instructor at the April'11 RKC (the one where it snowed and part of the grad workout was wresting a polar bear to the ground) and found him to be very knowledgeable, funny in both accent and humor, and firm when it was required. (I still have flashbacks of him yelling at me to sit back into my swings...)
If you are fortunate enough to live in the land of kangaroos and didgeridoos, you need to hook up with him and learn from his mad 'bell skills!
(Just don’t make fun of his accent. He will make you do LOTS of extra swings...)
10/10 Australia's Best!
By Piers Kwan
/ Brisbane, Australia
I was recently at the RKC in Minnesota and had the privilege of having Andrew as one of my teams assistants. Andrew, alongside the Team Leader and his fellow assistant, was a constant source of knowledge and instruction. Not only did he teach our group, but he was also trusted by Pavel to run sections of the certification. Andrew is blazing a path in kettlebells that no one else in Australia has ever done before. If you want to learn from the best in the business in Australia then you would be silly not to go to Andrew.
Andrew isn't going to sugar coat the truth, so if you want someone who is going to care more about your feelings than making you a better athlete then you may need to look elsewhere, but if you are simply looking for the best in the Australian industry, Andrew is your guy.
By Cory Jirak RKC
/ Cedar Rapids, IA
I met Andrew at the St. Paul, MN RKC Cert. April 28th-May 1st of 2011. Not only did I meet a great person i had the honor of working beside him as an asst. RKC. Andrew's overall knowledge of the RKC system, extensive fighting experience, along with being a CK-FMS is just some of many qualities that he possess. He will push you, motivate you, and make you not only stronger but more efficient at the movements. Could only hope i get the opportunity to work with Andrew once again!!! Thanks Andrew.
10/10 A Natural Leader
By Neghar Fonooni, RKCII
/ Baltimore, MD
I had the pleasure of working closely with Andrew at the level 2 RKC certification in 2010. I was amazed and impressed at his depth of knowledge and expertise. However, I was able to see his exceptional abilities as an instructor while assisting at the RKC certification in April 2011, and he has managed to further impress me! Andrew was tasked with teaching the clean, as well as leading a workout and relaying the rules of the RKC snatch test. On all fronts, Andrew was articulate, professional and esteemed in his teaching skills. His breadth of knowledge and years of experience were very apparent as he addressed the group of over 100 candidates. The workout he instructed was nothing short of amazing: All 100 candidates swinging and breathing in perfect harmony. It was beautiful. Andrew proved his unparalleled stance as the leader in kettlebell training in Australia and continues to lead by example. I'd recommend Andrew to anyone I know, and I am proud to call myself his colleague.
9/10 Melbourne HKC
By Sean Bowring
/ Melbourne, Australia
I've attended several classes run by Andrew and this one was consistently of high value and quality with the othesr. Andrew taught with his clear style, getting the critical technical points across with professionalism and laconic humour.
The usual and expected DragonDoor standard was there in its uncompromising way and one would expect no less. Excellent.
10/10 So you think you train with the best ????
By jerry hamill
In my headspace I'd trained with and had been trained by the best. Special Forces and then some more at 5 ft 11 and ideal weight 71 KG.Hmm SF left me at 130 kg and a complete animal at 21 yrs old. Things change when you end up in corporate business, fluctuating between 83-99 kgs- still puffy body fat, arrogant with good physical genes, and a history of mad insane traininig.
This does not sit well with a 39 year old body and a serious inability to recover from training you are used to. It made me injured, ALOT, sick, ALOT, unhappy, ALOT........, Andrew constantly and gently talked sense to me. Guess what-since 36 yrs old I thought I knew best, I am an ex police and military PTI so clearly I know better. How wrong and arrogant was I. Andrew has idendified serious flaws in my body deep set through bad technique and instruction. By his hand and methodology I am stronger, fitter, better and more flexible than i was at 20. Who has that reputation in this country I ask you.
10/10 Knowledgeable, Professional, Friendly, Generous
By Donna Richards
/ Sydney, Australia
I went to Melbourne at the weekend to participate in a couple of workshops run by Andrew (and colleague Shannon). Four hours of training full proceeds (not just profits) of the workshops donated to the Red Cross for the New Zealand Earthquate Appeal. An incredibly generous gesture.
Workshops were information packed. Andrew is amazingly knowledgable about hardstyle kettlebell and bodyweight training and really observant. I got a lot of feedback for improving my swing and getup. High point of the day was the bodyweight squat section. WIth the drills and tips provided I was able to improve my squat from approx thighs parallel to ground to a full squat. This was a fantastic result which I'm delighted about.
This time around I went to Melb to train with Andrew and Shannon because of the charitable aspect of the event. But they are so good that I would definitely say it is worth making a trip to Melb from anywhere in Aus to train with them and I will again in future for sure.
10/10 Great ambassador for Dragon Door!
By Paul May
/ Melbourne, Australia
I recently attended the Beginner classes held by Andrew at Dragon Door Australia. Andrew is an excellent teacher and provides clear and concise feedback on form, posture and how to improve performance. He made additional time to answer all questions at the end of each session often providing different participants with homework to help them improve faster.
I've noticed a definite increase in muscle definition since starting the classes and may even get my six-pack back soon! The workouts Andrew cerated were great and even allowed me to pass the HKC despite having only attended the Beginner classes!
Andrew has great confidence in his abilities for good reason. He is a passionate, knowledgeable and his inner quest to continue learning benefits all of his clients and other RKCs within Australia.
By Tim Uljarevic - HKC
/ Brisbane - Australia
I've had the opportunity to trainwith Andrew for many hours since taking part in the first HKC course in Australia. Since then, I have assisted on the three subsequent HKC's, and taken part in all workshops associated with them. I've also had the pleasure of hosting Andrew on several occasions for special workshops, and had a couple of FMS sessions under him.
Andrew's knowledge and skill in strength and conditioning are unsurpassed in Australia. He is highly focsued and motivated with his own training, which then translates to better training for those of us under his guidance.
His FMS sessions have helped me greatly. My first screen scored 14, and only a few months later after implementing his corrections, I scored 17 with no asymetries.
His coaching and mentoring has taken me to new heights with my KB training, KB instruction, and also in implementing strength tactics in to my full time Krav Maga school.
Nothing but the highest reviews and recommendations from me.
/ South Australia
I attended the recent Melbourne HKC after having trained on my own for 2 years to go and learn from the best in the country. I was not disappointed... Andrew was extremely professional and passionate about the Dragon Door system and for good reason... it sets the bar high and building a rock solid foundation was first and foremost in his message to all in attendance... this was without doubt, a very comprehensive introduction to learning to move better, getting stronger and healthier, all while using our preferred tool of choice, the mighty kettlebell...
Thank you Andrew for the quality education imparted on the day and at the one on one FMS
10/10 Knows his stuff
By Kylie Pethybridge, HKC
/ Padthaway, South Australia
I have just returned from the HKC weekend that Andrew hosted in Melbourne with a head full of information and ideas, and a body full of tight technique thanks to what I learned from both Andrew and Shaun Cairns.
Andrew's extensive background knowledge and easy presentation style complemented the HKC program perfectly, and the obvious mutual respect and seamless interaction between him and Shaun exponentially increased the knowledge we were able to take in from the day. And their humorous banter created a positive atmosphere in the room that certainly helped too!
Andrew always had a ready explanation for all the questions thrown at him, and answers were precise and zeroed in on the heart of it like a laser.
He also has eagle eyes (seemingly in the back of his head) for assessing and correcting technique.
People travel from all around Australia to train with Andrew - and for good reason!
10/10 Best Kettlebell Instructor in Australia
By TC Lee
/ Perth, Western Australia
I was fortunate enough to attend Melbourne HKC 2011 and learn from Andrew. Even as an Australian Kettlebell Instructor (AKI) certified and training with kettlebell for more than 3 years, I learnt so much more from Andrew who had an indepth knowledge of Hardstyle kettlebell training even though it's just 3 exercises we learnt at the HKC. He is passionate about what he teaches and I would highly recommend anyone who lives in Australia to seek his expertise if the goal is to attain the highest standard in kettlebell training.
10/10 Kettlebell basics
By Sean Bowring
/ Melbourne, Australia
I recently attended a series of kettlebell basics classes run by Andrew in Abbotsford, Victoria. The sessions were very educational, precise and informative. They increased my skills level a lot as well as my understanding and appreciation of productive kettlebell training. Anyone looking to get a proper insight into kettlebell training should ensure they book into these classes.
10/10 Quality Instructor
By Lianne Saunders
Great manner in explaining exercises and giving corrections and cues. Is able to simplify complex exercises and drills and break them down into manageable steps. Every training session with Andrew leaves you feeling that you've achieved something new or improved upon exercises you thought you'd mastered! Great to be able to benefit from such an experienced and knowledgeable trainer.
9/10 Martial Power Melbourne
By Sean Bowring
/ Melbourne, Australia
I recently attended The Martial Power workshop conducted in Melbourne by Andrew Read. I have been in the fitness industry since 1983 and heavily involved in the martial arts since the late 1980's. In that time, I've seen plenty of things come and go and been to many seminars. Andrew's presentation skills and content were fantastic and I came away from the session with a lot of great information and training ideas. Definitely recommended and I'm looking forward to more in 2011.
/ geelong, australia
i have been lucky to be involved twice know with andrew at coarses, he is very professional and really knows what he is talking about. ten out of ten
10/10 Without a doubt one of the most knowledgable and passionate instructors I've come across.
By Tania Rowan
/ Camperdown, Vic, Australia
Andrew's knowledge is second to none. After reading many of Andrew's articles and hearing industry 'talk' regarding his knowledge and work with Kettlebells I have been fortunate to be able to do some training with him. Each time I've walked away wanting to go back and learn more! One of the great things about training with Andrew is that he lives and breathes what he teaches. I basically 're-learnt' how to do the KB Swing with much better technique, found myself saying 'Turkish Get Ups are actually fun' (and I never thought I'd say that!). I have enjoyed taking on board his teachings and use them with my clients.
Personally, I'm certainly getting much better results after incorporating what he has taught me into my own training.
9/10 Definately worth it!!!!!!!
/ Gladstone, Qld.
My comprehensive then any training i have done.
I had been a self taught girevik working my way through enter the kettlebell but seemed to have some issues with my shoulder. So I booked in with martial power to get a correct feel for the exercises and get technique check up, I was all wrong. reading books and watching Dvds is good but proper instruction is best. I hope the team continue to spread the hardstyle downunder and Australians take advantage of this school.
10/10 Highly Recommended
By Rachael Godfrey
/ Queensland, Australia
Before meeting Andrew I was struggling to return my fitness to where it had been before a variety of injuries, with my interest in kettlebells consisting of some rather average swings.
Thanks to his endless knowledge, great instruction and ability to work with my own personal limitations, he has helped improve my abilities to beyond what I ever thought possible. His brilliant guidance keeps me on track and continues to motivate me to reach my goals.
Andrew is one of the best instructors I have dealt with. Highly recommended.
10/10 Highly Recommended
By Nada Hristovski
/ Melbourne, Australia
I wasn't sure what I was getting myself involved in when I first met Andrew Read. After my first kettle bell session with Andrew, I was so glad the hour was up and couldn't get out of there quick enough. 7 months later Andrew is still training me and I have never looked back.
My first three months at Dragon Door Australia, I trained with kettle bells twice a week, combination of cardio movement and strength. The benefit of this type of training for me was that Andrew could work on my weaknesses.
The last 16 weeks I have been in one of Andrew's "Fat Loss Programs". The program involved me training with Andrew three times a week. Every four weeks Andrew would give me a diet plan that I had to follow to very last dot point. Each four weeks the diet plan would change slightly from the previous four weeks, this was done so I could keep losing weight without the fear of me starving my body. As the weeks went by Andrew made me walk for one hour on non-training days, four more weeks went by and I started walking one hour seven days a week on top of my kettle bell training.
16 weeks later......I have lost just over 20 kilos!!!
Andrew Read and his program have taught me healthy eating habits and ways to keep the weight off. My body has transformed and my energy levels have increased. I feel like a different person, a beter, lighter and more toned person.
I can say with confidence, Andrew Read is a dedicated, inspirational and most defiantly a devoted personal trainer. I have never met anyone else who would give and do anything for his clients and get such exceptional results.
10/10 I thought I was passionate about Kettlebells...
By Fiona Coutts
/ Tasmania, Australia
But I've got nothing on Andrew! His enthusiasm and knowledge of Kettlebells and all things fitness is second to none. Real fitness comes from proper planning, and although I specifically went to Andrew for a technique check he made sure that I left with a plan on how to move forward and meet my goals, in addition to corrective exercises for asymmetries he uncovered in my FMS screen. His trained eye cleaned up my swing and snatch technique in record time. Andrew thankfully reinforced in my mind how important the Getup is as a corrective and I was able to recently pass the HKC in Sydney -no doubt about it, Andrews training got me there! I hope to have the privelege of working with Andrew again in my lead up to RKC!
10/10 Extremely recommended
By Alby Owens RKC
3weeks before I left to attend the RKC in Philadelphia Sept 17th 2010. I was unable to achieve the required reps for the RKC snatch test, 100 snatches in 5 mins to pass the first part of the certification. Within 2 weeks of training with Andrew Read, I was able to pass the test within 4min 30sec. A 30 second improvement in 2 weeks. Situation AWESOME!!!!
Whether you're serious about strength, weight-loss or pain-free movement. Andrew Read is the man to see.
His ability to perform and explain techniques in an easy to understand way is fantastic, and his attention to form is second to none.
If you`re in Australia and want to be the best seek Andrew Read.
10/10 Australia's best, no question
By Samuel Johnson
/ Melbourne, Australia
I started training with kettlebells on my own, but looked up Andrew because I wanted to have my form checked by an RKC for my own safety (after a few months I started having some back weirdness during swings) and to make sure I was good for the HKC which I had plans on attending. While my technique was pretty good, Andrew helped me to improve it drastically. I continued to train with him up to and after the HKC (which I easily passed) because it's enjoyable and I continue to learn so much from him. Andrew is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to physical training and functional movement, and in addition to my own gains I've also witnessed the phenomenal progress of a few of his other clients - some of those transformations are literally astounding. Andrew's passion is an inspiration, and he is truly committed to helping his clients achieve their absolute best.
10/10 Great instructor
I recently attended the Sydney HKC.
Andrew assisted Dave Whitley, and was a great asset to the workshop, his instruction on the goblet squat was precise and easy to understand.
My single arm swing needed some fine tuning, and Andrew helped me understand the problem and and gave me the information to fix it.
Andrew is an incredibly knowledgeble instructor, and I would recomend him to anyone.
9/10 Natural leader
By Claude Castro
/ Melbourne AUSTRALIA
In this industry the word team leader is commonly used. Finally i have come accros Andrew Read and can say, theres one. A dedicated and knowledgeable Kettlebell instructor, a brilliant facilitator and runs a smooth operation here in Australia. An obvious choice to lead Dragondoors Australian arm. During my recent HKC in Sydney he demonstrated to me that his RCK-FMS level is well deserved and will most likely be higher over time.
10/10 Great Ambassador
By Sigrun Bishop
/ Rockhampton, QLD, Australia
I have recently been asked to assist in the third HKC course ever run in Australia. What an honour to have been invited by Andrew. Through this and numerous conversations Andrew and I had, it shows that Andrew is truly committed to bringing kettlebell training into the community here in Australia. He believes with his whole heart in the Dragondoor training system and its benefits and shows it at every opportunity, be it through advice or his own commitment to training. Great professionalism and generous giving of his time and information make it very worthwhile for being on his Australian Dragondoor team. He is a great ambassador for Dragondoor in the land down under. Thank you Andrew for having me on your team!
10/10 Great Teacher
By Ryan Walsh
/ Woonona, NSW, Australia
Yesterday I attended a HKC in Sydney, Australia and believe it to be one of the best educational experiences I have been involved in due to the knowledge and commitment of the instructors on the day.
Andrew Read is a fantastic teacher as he made it very easy for me to understand how my body was moving and what I needed to do to move better. His ability to see what was going wrong in my movement and describe clearly how to fix it made a huge difference in what I got out of the day and has given me motivation to develop those same skills in order to provide the same benefits to my clients.
His knowledge of the course material was great and he taught all the movements in a clear and concise fashion but also with a great demeanor which made the day more enjoyable.
Andrew's emphasis on skill and technique are an inspiration for my own training and I look forward to attending more courses and events at which he will be instructing.
10/10 Simply the Best!
By Nicole Stuart
/ Brisbane, Australia
I contacted Andrew earlier this year when I found out that he was running preparation workshops for the upcoming Brisbane HKC. I explained to him that I really wanted to do the HKC (and prep workshops) but was worried I wouldn't be ready in time as I had given birth at the end of February and was carrying a lot of excess weight.
After having a chat with Andrew at the prep workshop I asked for his help with diet and a training program for the HKC. Another big obstacale for me was the flexed arm hang test. I couldn't even hold my own bodyweight for one second and the HKC testing required a 15 sec hold! Andrew also helped me with this and provided me with continuous encouragement.
When the HKC rolled around I had lost 6kg and have since lost another 2kg. I passed my flexed arm test with flying colours and was also one of the few that passed the HKC on the day (not bad for a stay at home mum!).
I am so proud that I achieved a goal that I never thought would be possible to achieve this year and couldn't have done it without Andrew's assistance and encouragement. I know that when I start training for the RKC that I will seek Andrew's expertise once again to maximise my chances of passing!!
10/10 Not just a pretty face...
By Delaine Ross, RKC TL
/ ATL, GA
:) I first met Andrew at CK-FMS and from the get go was amazed at his talent. Andrew has a way of breaking down the fundamentals and intelligently helping his clients reach their goals. The more I get to know Andrew the more impressed I become. If you have a chance to work with him, dont miss out. You will not be disappointed.
10/10 Made me a World Champion
By Sophia McDermott
/ Las Vegas, USA
I have trained with Andrew on and off throughout the duration of my Brazilian Jiu Jitsu career and I have learned so much. He has helped me to become leaner and stronger as well as helped me to rehabilitate my injuries so that I have actually come back better than ever!
Training with Andrew has helped me become 2009 BJJ no gi World Champion as well as earning 3rd place at this year's Pan American Championships and 1st place at this years Grappler's Quest.
I look forward to continuing my training with Andrew and seeing where it takes my BJJ for the future.
10/10 True Professional
/ Director: Krav Maga Training Academy (Brisbane)
I first met Andrew in March 2010 when I was a participant on Australia's first HKC course. Since then I've had the honour of hosting the 2nd HKC here, and the preparatory courses and workshops leading up to it.
I have found Andrew's teaching skills, his dedication to my own training and to the course participants as second to none. He is a true professional. I have trained with KB Instructors from other systems here, and in my experience certainly rate Andrew as the local subject matter expert.
There were a number of things I needed to improve with my own KB training and Andrew gave me the direction and correction I needed. My needs were complicated by injuries from other areas, yet he was able to guide me and take these in to consideration without problem. He has also greatly assisted me with development of my own training programs, and personal health and fitness needs.
All students who took part in the preparation courses and the 2nd HKC course passed. This is a testament to Andrew's ability in itself.
As a professional Krav Maga Instructor and host of the above workshops and courses, I found Andrew easy to deal with. He always kept me in the loop of what was going on, what was needed, and always maintained a friendly professionalism.
I strongly recommend anyone considering training with KB's, or implementing programs within their fields to contact Andrew. I know I certainly will be sticking with him. He is worth every cent.
10/10 A Professional
By Haydn Ellis, founder Brutal Training
/ Sydney, Australia
I have been training on and off with Andrew for over ten years. But I have been learning from Andrew for over 16 years. To this day I regularly put into practise principles he has taught me in my own training and in my training of professional athletes. Andrew is the consummate professional in all aspects of training, coaching and the running of his business.
Andrew is experienced in coaching athletes in a huge variety of disciplines. He is, in my opinion, a master problem solver. I wouldn't hesitate to seek his advice regarding any aspect of training and development even if it's to do with a sport he hasn't had experience with to date. He'll either tell you he can't help you or you'll get the best help money can buy.
10/10 Great Results
/ Brisbane, Australia
When I first started dabbling in kettlebells, sure I could move the bell around, mimic the exercises in dvd's, books, and what I saw others do...but did I really understand what I was doing and why? No...not until I decided to take it seriously and do some training with Andrew. I decided to start down the path to a HKC to ensure my technique and understanding were correct. Andrew certainly got me there! The training I did with Andrew in preparation for the course skyrocketed my understanding of kettlebell use, what I was trying to achieve with the exercises and how to go about achieving those results. It's one thing to be told how to do an exercise, its quite another to learn the why behind the how... and that's what Andrew gave me. He his driven to achieve, in his own training and in his client's training. Under his empowering tutelage I successfully passed the HKC! And I'm hungry for more!!
10/10 Long distance mentoring
By Sigrun Bishop
/ Rockhampton, Central QLD, Australia
I have recently attended the HKC instructor course in Brisbane. The course is tough and if you weren't prepared for it there was not much chance to pass the end of the day physical assessment. Thanks to Andrew's help and mentoring over long distance I had no problems passing. He was always keen to answer questions and provide lots of useful advice. As a fairly new personal trainer I have the utmost respect for Andrew's wealth of knowledge and experience. I feel privileged to enter the Dragondoor comunity and be able to team up with greats like Andrew.
10/10 Walk the walk & talk the talk - He leads by example
By Jaime Bowtell
/ Brisbane,QLD Australia
I am extremely proud of Dragon Doors
exceptionally high standard & quality services.
Very honored & proud to have trained with Andrew Read
The chief of Dragon Door Australia.
The weekend course's & all the training course's i have taken with Andrew were the best i have ever taken in my whole life & feel as tho i have grown enormously & have gotten way more out of his training sessions & courses then i hoped for im very honored. Not only am i able to train on my own as a world class Athlete i know that for someone to be able to join forces with the team as an Instructor they
must have embedded 2nd nature Technique & i personally know that anyone of the trainers that Andrew has taught & trained
can demonstrate & teach anyone at the drop of a hat any time of the day & a client would get there desired needs and there money's worth, i can assure you 110% Andrew can deliver the tools for your needs & produce your required results.
Hope to join forces as an Instructor with him one day
10/10 Best gym work I've ever done
By Drew Jackson
Started with Andrew to help get back in shape to keep up with the absolute machines he's producing that never get tired out on our BJJ mat. Not only did I find an almost immediate improvement in strength and cardio. But discovered long lost muscle groups I'd been neglecting for decades. Movements I'd given up on long ago as 'not for me' have become do-able for the first time, even when I was at my competition peak.
Damn, I'm starting to sound like a paid add ;) Honestly a very good trainer, can not recommend anyone else more highly.
10/10 Only the best
By Kane Walker
After around six months of training with Andrew, I have become markedly stronger, fitter and more flexible. Andrew's interest and history with martial arts has greatly aided my training, with him able to build outstanding workouts which are customised for my specific, and rather unique, training needs.
Andrew's knowledge is second to none. Whether it be regarding kettlebell training, general fitness or body mechanics, Andrew demonstrates every movement with precision and explains it's purpose so that I know what everything I am doing is designed to achieve. Further, Andrew's knowledge of injury rehabilitation has led to my knee which suffered a prior injury (which was disrupting my martial arts training) feeling as good as new.
Andrew has made me stronger, fitter, more flexible and able to move better. He can do this for you too.
10/10 He's changed my life.
By Adrian Choi
I was first introduced to Andrew Read by my Brasilian Jiu Jitsu Instructor Cameron Rowe. I was approximately 10 months into my rehabilitation following a knee reconstruction. My sports Physio Paul Haas had got me back to full range of motion. My strength and confidence, however, still needed a lot of work. Andrew assessed me, and worked with me for 3 months. In that time, I did what he told me to do, religiously did the homework he set me, and saw my improvements grow steadily. By the 3 month mark, I was re-assessed by Paul who was impressed with all I had achieved -He told me Andrew was spot on......
Andrew has helped me with my knee, and, equally importantly, has given me lifelong lessons to be followed regarding core strength. The things he has taught me I use day to day and I'm really grateful to him for all he has done for me.... I thoroughly recommend him and can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org if anyone out there has any questions.
By Piers Kwan
/ Brisbane, Australia
Initially when i spoke to Andrew i was a little bit wary of the price. I don't earn much because of the nature of my job and the fact that i am considered a full time student by two different institutions, so when i make the choice to spend money on something non-essential like training i need to be pretty sure it's worthwhile.
I've read a lot about fitness and am intending to do a personal training course in the very near future. If i can become half the trainer that Andrew is then i will be doing very well. He has made such drastic improvements in my form, and fixed some niggling problems for me, that i am sure he has saved me from injuries.
I can't recommend Andrew enough, 12 out of 10!
9/10 Highly Recommended
By Bob Kane
/ Brisbane, Qld, Australia
Andrew is an excellent, knowledgeable and professional instructor. His has an in-depth understanding of the mechanics of kettlebell training, a great toolbox of training drills, concepts & ideas and for those of us that are a little older or suffering from injuries he has a truckload of remedial exercises. Add to this a personal dedication not only to his craft but also personal drive to ensure his students success and you have a top notch professional trainer - if you are interested in training with kettlebells in a technically correct manner and with a certified instructor from the worlds original and leading kettlebell training organisation, then look no further.
10/10 Look no further.....
By Justina Herne
/ Melbourne Aust.
If you want REAL results - Andrew is your man and kettlebells will be your best friends!! I was looking for a way back fm injury and the lost confidence in my body's ability to regain strength and fitness. Andrew has not only given me back my health and well-being, but has raised my motivation to a far greater level than I would have thought possible! My diet and understanding of how to eat "cleanly" has improved immeasurably.
Andrew is knowledgable, experienced, inspiring....and he somehow manages to make training fun!! He's the best!!
By Maurice Burrows
/ Sydney, Australia
Whilst my only interaction with Andrew was the inaugural HKC in Australia, I must say I was extremely impressed with his instruction/coaching style. Very knowledgeable and motivating, he complemented Shaun Cairns' instruction extremely well.
Too bad he doesn't live in Sydney, I would train with Andrew any day.
10/10 Second to none!
By Shannon Scullin
From the very first time you meet Andrew it's clear to see that he is passionate about kettlebell's and his experience and knowledge speaks for itself once your training with him commences. I started training with Andrew 3 months ago with the aim to increase my upper body strength. I'm currently in the final stages of testing for the MFB and want to ensure that if I am accepted as a recruit that I can hold my own in such a male dominated industry. In the short time that Andrew has been training me I have not only doubled my strength but the techniques he has taught me enabled me to participate and successfully complete the HKC (Hardstyle Kettlebell Certification) which was run for this very first time in Australia this year!
Andrew's ability as trainer is a stand out above the rest and it was obvious to see at the recent HKC. A total of 12 participants attended on the day, all fitness enthusiasts and personal trainers. Out of the 12 who attended only 6 passed the rigorous testing with all 4 of Andrew's clients who attended passing the certification with flying colours!
Thanks to Andrew I am well and truly on my way to exceeding my goals. He is a one in a million trainer who is genuinely committed to ensuring you get the most out of every second of every training session. If you're serious about getting results then Andrew is the man to call!
10/10 Proud To Train With The Best!!!
By Yaron Mehr
/ Melbourne, Australia
It's now March 2010 and I've been training with Andrew for approx. 18 months. In that time his expertise as a trainer has taken me to strength & endurance heights that no one (myself included) would ever have thought possible.
After months of hard work, this past weekend (March 20th & 21st) RKC Andrew Read (also Dragondoor's representative to Australia) hosted and assisted at Dragondoor's first ever instructor course to be held in Australia, the HKC, and I was proud to be there. Over the entire weekend Andrew acted and assisted with a level of professionalism rarely seen nowadays, he did Dragondoor very proud. I'm proud to say I passed the HKC, and I can also say that without Andrew's brilliant coaching and without his encouragement, there is no way I could have done it without him.
To be your best you have to train with the best, when it comes to kettlebells in Australia (or any training for that matter), I'm proud to say I train with the best, and would highly recommend RKC Andrew Read to anyone!!!
10/10 Practical Application
By Shaun Cairns, Senior RKC
/ Somerset West, South Africa
I had the privilege of working with Andrew at the first ever HKC held in Australia in March 2010. He has a great, practical knowledge of human movement using kettlebells and has the ability to be able to explain these concepts so that it is easily understood and applied.
10/10 great instructor
/ Canberra, Australia
Andrew was an assistant instructor at Shaun Cairns's HKC course and workshops. His knowledge is second to none and his hints and tips were extremely helpful, perfectly complementing Shaun's excellent instruction. His enthusiasm is infectious and he is definitely one of the best physical training instructors around.
By David Christopher
/ Melbourne, VIC, AUS
I've only recently met Andrew Reed and been training with him over the last 4-5 weeks helping a me and a school of fighters get ready for an up coming tournament. In all of my experience preparing for tournaments and fights, training through, with, and around injuries, both in the U.S and here in Australia, i have never been as quickly affected by exercises given to me as i have these last couple weeks. As per usual i was working around an injury for that would usually see me off the mat for 2 sometimes 3 weeks for recovery, with Andrews help i was back on the mat pain free in 3 days!! Absolute magic!
By David Christopher
/ Melbourne, VIC, AUS.
I've only just started training with Andrew Read recently, but have been involved in martial arts for over 7 years. In all my time training through, with, and around injuries, with trainers from the U.S. and Australia, i have never recovered as quickly as i have with the simple exercises i have been given by this instructor. Going from taking sometimes up to 3 weeks off the mat and missing out on tournaments because of minor injuries, to getting back on the mat pain free in 3 days..... Absolute Magic. This guy knows his shit.
10/10 A new me
By Frank Yokouchi
/ Melbourne, Australia
I have been training judo, freestyle wrestling and brazilian jiu jitsu for about 3years. During these times, often i would suffer from backpains and i spoke to Andrew about fixing these problems and getting stronger core. I started training with Andrew and he first off started at looking at inbalances and faults in my body. We worked to fix those before moving onto strengthening me. It has only been 3months and i have dropped a weight division and strongest and fittest i have ever been in my whole entire life. Currently I am training towards Victorian Jiu Jitsu championships and feeling confident than ever. Andrew observes whats needed in your exercise regime, talks and explains clearly what we do and why. A great instructor, trainer and coach.
Thank you Andrew.
10/10 Stronger than ever!
By Shannon Lyons
/ Melbourne, Australia
I started training with Andrew 4 months ago after my coach recommended him to me. At first, I just wanted a few pointers on the fundamentals of kettlebell training, as well as some information on conditioning for martial arts. After speaking with Andrew for ten minutes, it was obvious he knew what he was talking about and two days later I was in the gym with him and haven't looked back since.
4 months down the track I can see visible changes to my body, I feel stronger now than I ever have before. My core strength and muscle endurance have increased well beyond my expectations. Not only have I changed physically, I have also developed a greater understanding of the bodies mechanics, and how each exercise we perform benefits my performance, not only in martial arts but in general.
Every session is different from the last, keeping things interesting, whilst at the same time always progressing. It's a fast paced, intense workout that pushes you too (and often past) your limits. I might leave each session sore, but I come back wanting more!
I highly recommend Andrew to anyone and everyone no matter what your goals are!
10/10 RESULTS FAST
By Lawrence Green
/ Melbourne , Victoria
At first I started training with Andrew mostly out of curiosity.
Here was this Kettle bell thing that I had heard about in hushed tones. "There was this one Russian that lifted bells and he could wrestle bears to the ground after a litre of vodka." That sort of thing.
I'm happy to report that there is no vodka involved in training, only a very comprehensive program that allows you to build stamina, strength and muscle in a very targeted fashion. The workouts are hard but also achievable. I am now twenty sessions in and already I lift 25% more weight than when I started and do it for longer too. My mixed martial arts training is improving out of sight all due to my new found athleticism.I do have to say that the best compliment of all is how people say " Hey what are you doing different, you look great!"
Thanks Andrew for all your knowledge, enthusiasm and dedication.
10/10 A real "personal" trainer
By Andrei - Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioner
/ Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Many people today consider themselves to be personal trainers however, there is more involved that just getting your cert IV and telling people to lift some weights. Andrew provides a great deal of experience, professionalism and most importantly he cares for the development of his clients.
I have trained Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for 7 years and had the opportunity to train with Andrew for 2 months during summer. Training with Andrew 3 times per week and twice on my own with nothing but kettlebells, I saw a marked improvement in my fitness and ability to grapple for longer periods of time. I was stronger and was able to move better on the mat and apply more strength and pressure which is an important part of BJJ.
Andrew also provides a great deal of moral and practical support as well as detailed explanations behind the reasons he uses kettlebells. Most importantly he has given me the tools to be able to continue this training by myself with only a kettle bell to accompany me, I cannot put a value on this. I have since left Australia but I would definetely train with Andrew again given the opportunity.
9/10 Balance and wellbeing
By Cam Rowe
/ Melbourne, Australia
Andrew has helped get my body heading towards being a stronger, fitter and more robust tool of my trade. Being a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu instructor, it is vital that my body is in the best possible condition so I can continue to perform and teach at my best. Andrew has helped bring my body into a more balanced state where the chance of injuries has been greatly reduced.
I have learnt an immense amount from Andrew about how the body works and I have been able to use this information directly in my teaching of BJJ. As my strength and conditioning coach, he has been a fantastic resource to draw upon in ensuring that I continue to manage my fitness in a smart and progressive manner. I now recommend Andrew to anyone that needs to become fit and strong or with ongoing injuries and in need of good sound rehab guidance.
10/10 Highly Recommended!
/ Telopea Downs, Australia
I have trained with Andrew a couple of times now, each time travelling over 500km each way, and I can honestly say it has been worth every minute of driving!
His knowledge of the RKC system is huge, and best of all, his ability to convey that knowledge and all the fine points needed to grasp it is outstanding. Straight away he was able to pick up on several issues in my swing and get-up, and give me drills to help correct them.
For myself, the biggest benefit has been through his rehab/corrective exercise knowledge. I used to suffer from cramping and tightness in my hips after swings, but after doing some Z-Health and FMS drills prescribed to me by Andrew that discomfort has gone. His ability to quickly assess what was going wrong and bring improvement on the spot was a real eye opener.
I can't wait for my next training session in Melbourne with Andrew and the improvements that I know will come with it. Highly recommended!
10/10 Fit and lean
By Tim O'Connor
/ Melbourne, Australia
At the age of 56, 191cm tall and weighing only 75kg, I doubted at the start that I could achieve the strength and stamina to take on a successful course of training with Andrew Read using kettlebells. However over a period of six months I have achieved a level of fitness which has surprised and pleased greatly. Above all my core strength has increased remarkably, and of the body parts, my forearms which are naturally very light have become stronger than I could have imagined. Thanks to Andrew's skills in training I have a reliable and balanced technique and can train much harder than ever before. I am very happy with the training that Andrew has taken me through and I have achieved the overall objective that I had - of putting some real strength into my light frame. Andrew's methods are steady, precise, consistent, challenging and encouraging - all qualities which produce results!
10/10 Strength & Conditioning Coach @ DMMA - Awesome!
By David Hart - DMMA
/ Melbourne, Australia
I run a large martial arts academy in Melbourne. Andrew joined our instructor team as the Strength & Conditioning coach earlier this year working with myself personally in addition to running group strength and conditioning sessions for our students preparing for competition.
In the few months he has been with us I have made massive improvements in my own strength and conditioning in addition to rehabilitating a number of very long term injuries. I feel fitter, stronger, more mobile and healthier than ever. An awesome feeling.
The team training he is running is excellent. Every student without exception has made massive gains in their strength and conditioning which is a huge boost to confidence going into a competition. Most have commented on feeling the fittest and strongest they ever have. A testament to Andrew's knowledge, dedication and thoughtfulness in what he does. The planning and passion he brings to each session is fantastic and highly motivating.
I can not recommend Andrew highly enough.
10/10 Couldn't have done it alone!
By Carmel Garcia
/ Melbourne, Australia
From day one, Andrew and I developed a profound love-hate long distance relationship. Over the 5 months prior to the big day, Andrew transformed my somewhat wayward eating habits and exercise plan into a very structured routine with rules that were at first difficult, but later quite easy to adopt. Morning walks and food diary entries were a major factor that contributed to the weight loss, and Andrew insisted on doing this daily without fail.
On top of the walks, Andrew constructed a mixed cardio and weights plan, which consisted of fairly basic exercises, but if done correctly were very effective for strengthening the core, building muscle, and losing fat. Every few weeks, the exercise plan would change, shocking my body into working different ways, making the workouts less monotonous. A "no excuses", "stick to the plan" philosophy was drilled into me time and time again in emails & phone calls; even though these were not always pleasant, Andrew was well aware of how effective this approach was and that it would work.
In the end, 17.5kgs was shed, no muscle was lost, the Wedding was perfect and since then I have enjoyed a great 2.5 months break while on my honeymoon. My partner and I were able to conquer the 4 day Inca Trail, without packing it in from exhaustion and we were generously rewarded with the beautiful views of Machu Picchu. I doubt this could have been done without having dropped the weight and increasing our fitness all with the help of Andrew Read. Surprisingly with that amount time eating and not strictly exercising, I was sure I'd stack the weight back on, however I was gladly astonished to see that only an extra couple of kilos were regained now it's back to the gym to maintain what was started.
9/10 Stay strong older guys
By doug loney
/ melbourne, australia
Some mid 50's guys who met up at a school reunion decided that we missed the bodies of yesteryear! After, we decided to do something about it and checked in with Andrew for a couple of sessions per week.
We are really enjoying the challenges and benefits of the 'bells.
Andrew has shown us that as we age, we can still stay in shape and I know we intend to keep getting up!!
10/10 Great Instructor
/ Melbourne, Australia
I have trained on and off with Andrew over the past 10 years and I can with the utmost authority say that he is driven to achieve the highest levels, in terms of his teaching ability, technical knowledge and clients results.
I have had a number of issues/injuries over the years and Andrew has always helped me to modify my training to fix these issues.
Using kettlebells as an example I was experiencing discomfort in my shoulders during Swings, I mentioned this to Andrew, did a demo and he noted 3 flaws in my swing that previous instructors did not notice.
We worked on various exercises to address these flaws and within 10 minutes I was back to doing swings with no issues what so ever, weeks later and my shoulders feel great.
Bottom line, if you want results, whatever your goals may be, Andrew will help you achieve them.
10/10 You will achieve your goals with Andrew
By Rachael Callander
/ Melbourne, Australia
With Andrew's true passion and knowledge with KB and the world of fitness in general, I feel he has been a great inspiration for me and has had a huge influence on my training methods to create the person i am today.
I am too a Personal Trainer and choose to train with Andrew because he pushes me beyond all my mental and physical boundaries.
With Andrew's influence and determination YOU TO can achieve results, for example going from 8kg TGU to 24kg TGU in 6 weeks as i personally have experience.
10/10 Definately Relentless
By Michelle Grinblat
/ Melbourne, Australia
I've been training with Andrew for only the past few months. Growing tired of the boring gym workouts i decided to try relentlesspt out. My current medical issues have made training difficult and Andrew understands. When it comes to encouragement, professionalism, dedication Andrew is is definatley a 'kettlebell above the rest'! With so many people claiming to be PT's its hard to decide which way to go and with whom. Andrew knows his product and sells it well. He has been around for a while therefore comes with a wealth of knowledge. The workouts are fun, tough and different every time.
By Katherine Rento
/ Melbourne, Australia
I am a personal trainer and choose to train with Andrew because he pushes me beyond my limits which have caused me to become physically and mentally stronger.
Andrew is a role model for any personal trainer.
His knowledge for kettle bells is boundless, every session is different and with out doubt, challenging.
With his attention to detail, there isn't an exercise that he won't break down step by step so that correct technique is achieved.
Andrew's passion for training is inspiring to be around, he makes you want to push for more and exceed past what you thought possible.
If you want to be the best, train with the best, Andrew.
10/10 Fitter, stronger and BETTER.
By Natalie Basa
/ Melbourne, Australia
Andrew Read has been my trainer for about 7 months. When we first started I had terrible back pain and crappy knees. Now I dont get back pain or knee pain what so ever, Andrew has this unbelievable ability to make people perform at their best, like he did so with me.
I myself was a personal training student under him, and now I train with him.
Not only my ability to be a good trainer, but also my fitness levels and my self belief that I can always lift heavier, work harder and be the best I can be has gone further then I have ever expected all because Andrew helped and encouraged me to be that person by teaching me the importance of technique, self disipline and always knowing I can do better because I know that Andrew has credibility because he is the best.
Without Andrew I wouldnt be half the trainer I am and I wouldnt be as strong and as fit as I am today.
10/10 I've never been fitter.
By Danny Tran
/ Melbourne, Australia
Since training with Andrew, my strength and stamina have improved visibly. I am a martial artist and have found the training to cater specifically to my needs, giving me a clear advantage over my competitors. I am now confident in my ability to see a fight through to the end and am no longer worried about the effectiveness of my training methods.
No training session is the same. Each time we train, it is a different circuit that pushes me to achieve new goals and refine existing skills. Andrew always explains what we're doing and why we're doing it - no concept of body mechanics is left unexplained. It is not only the physical exercises that are beneficial, but also the motivation that Andrew provides. The encouragement and the support have helped me to achieve new personal bests.
If you want to hit harder, move faster and fight longer, give Andrew a call.
10/10 Simply the BEST !!!
By Rishi Phule
/ Melbourne, Australia
A good instructor will take in to account your injuries and work around it, but an excellent instructor will foresee them and fix the problem. Andrews ability to do so made him stand out from others and I was very happy to have met him. I have been training under him for a few months now and the results speak for themselves. My painful hamstring injury is almost gone due to the strength I gained by using Kettle bells. Although I weighed normal earlier, I have noticeably lost fat and gained lean muscle since I started training. I have over 5 years of martial arts experience and I can definitely say that I have never felt stronger before.
Andrews experience in various fitness streams adds a lot of value in his ability to customise workouts for attaining individual goals. His workout variations, deep study of the subject, and quest for continuous improvement not only adds fun to working out, but also reassures that you will always get the best of the latest. I would recommend him to anyone who wants to learn things the RIGHT way to achieve their fitness goals.
10/10 Worth Every Cent
By Yaron Mehr
/ Melbourne, Australia.
I've been training with Andrew for about 8 months. In that time his instruction has been second to none. I only train with him twice per week and I get lot's of comments from friend's, colleague's and other training partners on how good & healthy I look, and how much my strength & fitness has improved.
His ability to cater to my personal needs & goals is fantastic, AND his ability to adapt & improvise is wonderful. I injured my knee in January of this year and he was a major aide in my rehab.
His knowledge is first class as is his ability to pass on information in lay terms. He trains you to succeed each and every time. What more could anyone ask for.
I highly recommend him as a trainer to anyone, regardless of sex, age, and training background/experience.