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Reviews

 
 
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10/10 Wish I had had this book as a beginner!
 
By Adrienne Harvey / Winter Park, FL

Simply put, I wish this was the book I had had when first starting out with kettlebells. So many useful photos, and seeing both Max and Beth demonstrate the exercises makes them so much easier to understand--for men and women. This book is a must-have for current or aspiring RKC or HKC instructors, or anyone who needs real, practical, and POWERFUL advice for kettlebell use. The exercise descriptions, mobility information, and solid program design strategies are incredibly worthwhile. My advanced clients will love having a resource to reference when practicing new intermediate/advanced moves at home too. A great all around approach and one that I will be very proud to regularly reference and share.

 
10/10 My New Go-to Book in the Gym!
 
By Lori Crock / Dublin, OH

This kettlebell book is a must-have for the personal trainer, strength coach or fitness buff who is learning to use kettlebells or who has been using them for awhile and wants to refine their technique. The format is easy-to-use and the layout, design and photographs are spectacular with both Max Shank and Beth Andrews demonstrating the movements. What I found most useful is that Max has included lots of cues, tips and coaching points on the movements/lifts, mobility and programming based on his vast experience as an athlete and a coach. He gets to the point on all of the key kettlebell movements without getting bogged down in too much detail. His real-world perspective on how to assess, teach, correct and regress/progress students with the kettlebell movements is fresh and inspiring.

 
10/10 Next Generation
 
By Chris Holder / San Luis Obispo, CA

This is the kettlebell book I have been waiting on... we have seen several titles on kettlebell training that, for the most part, have been very similar in content... regardless of title, the information has been basically rehashed over and over... Max has done something very special with Master the Kettlebell... he's taken the information and moved it forward... not only is he bringing, in my mind, a fresh approach to our beloved system but he's also giving us so many other tools to use when developing our programs... Mobility, assessments, program design, he hits it all... the book itself is visually beautiful... the framing of the pages is such a clever way of making each page its own masterpiece... and Beth and Max are in such beautiful shape that they really convey the "potential" of Max's message... so well done...

 
9/10 A Must Have
 
By Abhijit Banerjee / Pickering, Ontario, Canada

I have been in the martial arts/combat/fitness world for 35+ years of which I have been using KB's as a part of my regular routine for the last 10 years. From that perspective I have no hesitation in saying that this is one of the very best books not only on KB exercises and correct forms but also explaining the rationale behind the seamless workout schedules combining the various exercises. If you believe that a true master can explain the most complex in a simple manner, then Max Shanks is a genuine true master. The ROI on this product is at least 10 fold!

 
10/10 Not just kettlebells
 
By Andrew Read / Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

One of the things we always tell people when they come to the RKC is that the weekend isn't just about kettlebells. In the same vein Max's new book isn't either. Sure, there are lots of pictures of kettlebell exercises in there, and some excellent tips on technique and correct form, but it's so much more than another carbon copy book on bells.

I've always felt that most kettlebell books are very light on for programming. Max's book has a genuine section on programming that has lessons and principles you can apply to any form of resistance training, be it bodyweight, kettlebell, or barbell. Again, one of the things we say repeatedly at the RKC is that we rely on principles and Max thoroughly runs through time tested principles of training and shows you how to apply them to your own training.

And that's the thing with this book - it's not handing you a fish and then forcing you to do the same old tired workout for the rest of your life. It's the training equivalent of being taught to fish and everyone from beginners to experienced trainers would benefit from reading his take on training - after all he's taught himself to do just about anything you can think of by applying these rules to his own training.

This isn't a "do this" book that leaves you feeling like you need another book in a few months time. You'll be able to apply the lessons for as long as you keep training.

 
10/10 Kettlebell Nirvana!
 
By Michael Krivka, Senior RKC / Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States

Are you new to kettlebells and need more insight and inspiration on how to use them? Are you an experienced kettlebell user and need information on how to get to the next level in your kettlebell training? Are you just stuck in a rut in your kettlebell training and need some ?fresh blood? in your workouts? If you answered ?Yes? to any or all of the above then I strongly suggest you pick up a copy of ?Master the Kettlebell?!

Max Shank?s new book, Master the Kettlebell, deserves a place on every kettlebell users bookshelf alongside of the other great books on kettlebell training that Dragon Door has produced over the last decade. I've had the pleasure of working and training with Max and his personality and insight into kettlebell training shines through in this book. Covering subjects from how to assess a first time client to program design, this book has more than its share of great information and knowledge bombs that will keep you referring back to it in the years to come. This was a great start for Max and I look forward to his future writing projects!

 
10/10 Greatness
 
By Paul Britt / Rockwall, Texas

This a great book for all levels, from beginner to advanced. Max Shank lays out a system that guarantees your success on your fitness journey. Max guides you through assessments, corrections and then on to skills in a smart progression. The book is laid out to give you a solid foundation and add advanced skills as you earn the right to perform them. I really like how good the cues and tips that are given are, but you are not beat down with some much minutiae that you cannot figure out what you are actually supposed to be doing. The great training program that Max gives is top notch and easy to follow. It will give you great results.

The book gets my highest praise and recommendation.

 
10/10 Simple and Effective!
 
By Nick Lynch / Milwaukee, WI

Master The Kettlebell (MTK) covers all angles of kettlebell training. MTK uses clear pictures and descriptions for all of the major KB movements as well as a numerous corrective exercises for common issues one may encounter when learning KB training.

The writing style is simple and effective. This book shows one how to do a particular movement as well as how not to. In a nutshell, I highly recommend Master The Kettlebell for any athlete, mom, dad, coach or individual. Nice work Max Shank and Dragon Door. By far the best Kettlebell book I've ever read!

-Nick Lynch
Assistant Coach MSOE University Men's Hockey
Head Strength and Conditioning Coach MSOE University Men's Hockey and Rowing
RKC Team Leader
Owner Superb Health Milwaukee

 
10/10 Simplest terms
 
By Ben Marvin / Austin, Texas, USA

Max Shank has in my opinion one of the best ways of teaching kettlebells to anyone. Max was also the lead instructor at my recent RKC workshop where he proved that sometimes the simplest path can be the best. While there are definitely books that give more details on the execution of certain exercises, Max gives you just what you need to be able to succeed. This book is a great read for anyone who wants to be able to learn to lift kettlebells but isn't necessarily interested in which physiological functions make it possible. Breaking down exercises to the simplest terms makes it easier to teach especially to people that are unfamiliar with kettlebells and Master the Kettlebell teaches you how to do that well, I would recommend this book for anyone interested in learning these exercises.

 
10/10 KettleBell Mastery
 
By Rambo Big Papi Bujan / Bronx, NY

Anything that has to do with Max Shank has to be The Ultimate. Major Inspiration for me I'm nowhere close to his Specimen but if this is going to at least get me closer to his Level then He's Dead On. Bigg Ups to Max.

 
10/10 The New Bible of Kettlebell books
 
By Laurel Blackburn / Tallahassee, FL

This will replace every other Kettlebell instruction book. It's incredible in both content and photographs. Easy to understand with a lot of extras that people need to learn to become better instructors and better users of the Kettlebell. Goodbye, Enter the Kettlebell and hello to Master the Kettlebell!!

 
9/10 I Wish Kettlebell Were Demonstrated In DVD Format
 
By Cheryl Tennial / Norfolk, VA, United States

Great book and illustrations. However, I would love to see this book demonstrated in action, in a dvd format .

 
8/10 Clear, concise and responsible!
 
By Nikos Eleftheriadis / Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece

This training manual is mostly aimed towards the trainer, although a complete beginner could have a good start. The production quality of the material is excellent. Images are crisp and clear and both models exemplify the exercises in the best possible way. Text is kept at a minimum but with excellent key pointers. Common mistakes are described and portrayed by the models. There are many sample programs on offer and the author shares his viewpoint on hybrid training with barbells, dumbells, bodyweight exercises etc. I was surpised that the author includes isolation exercises, although he clearly states that this is only to satisfy those with aesthetic considerations. Also, there are many vatiations of kettlebell lunges.
What I found very important is that the author is not kettlebell biased. He clearly advises that you should integrate kettlebells in your training in a careful, deliberate way and not think that you have just found the one and only key to strength and fitness. I have never read elsewhere that performing the snatch might prove too risky for minimal compensation. A very responsible approach towards the reader. Overall, a very good book. It would be really nice to be supplemented by a digital video version.

 
10/10 A "must have" book for your KB collection
 
By Jeff Duenez / Ladera Ranch, CA, USA

Clear, concise and to the point writing with outstanding pictorials make this book perfect for a tablet adding quick reference material for your training.

 
6/10 DISAPPOINTED
 
By Robert Beauchamp / Chard, Somerset, UK

I purchased this book having read Max's excellent articles on T-Nation and reading the other reviews; it is a very good book but (for me) did not live up to the hype and I am sorry to say I deleted it and asked for a refund.

Beautifully presented; however a lot of the photos just repeat themselves using male then female model.

Detail wise, Pavel's books (e.g. 'Simple&Sinister') offer an awful lot more in terms of in-depth 'how-to' and the devil is in the details, that is not to say there are some useful 'cues' for the Kettlebell exercises.

Programming wise, look up Max's articles on T-Nation and you will get the jist.
Sorry to say I was disappointed with the content of this book; possibly as I expected so much more from Max Shank?

You will not go far wrong with this book; if it is your very first Kettlebell book, but I would point anyone in the direction of Pavel's series first and foremost.

Bottom line, it is good but has been over-hyped; disappointing considering Max's undeniable physical and instructional abilities.

 
10/10 A must have
 
By Mario De Leon / Chino Hills, California, United States

Everything you need to know about kettlebells.

 
10/10 How good is it!!!!
 
By Adrian Day / Bega, NSW, Australia.

I am so glad this book came out before I even attempted RKC. Full of working knowledge.

 
10/10 The Building Blocks to Any Great Pyramid
 
By Angelo Gala / Boston, MA, USA

Max took the concept of the ground breaking "Enter the Kettlebell" and answered all the questions we had developed after reading it. We all know that the kettlebell when used properly, can deliver astonishing results. Max clearly gives the whys and hows by connecting the dots from where to start, where to go and how to get there simply and efficiently.

 
3/10 DISAPPOINTED ALSO
 
By Casey Boyer / Columbus, Ohio, United States

I'm echoing the comment above as I too was expecting much more from this book, especially given Max Shank's status and his various articles I've read previously. The book simply lacks substance. The bulk of the pages are in essence an exercise library with VERY minimal details, let alone in-depth explanations or "nuggets" of wisdom.

For example, "Romanian Deadlift - With minimal knee bend, perform deadlifts with one or two kettlebells." That's the full explanation, accompanied by 2 pictures.

There are a lot of pictures, but many are unnecessary duplicates showing both Max and Beth performing the exercises. Meanwhile photos of the assessment and warmup exercises are not included.

Again, as one of the first kettllebell focused books to come out of DD post Pavel, my expectation was very high. However it is a huge let down. To say this book is anything near Pavel's books is ridiculous, and better than is ludicrous.

If you're looking to learn kettlebells, stick with the original, Pavel's Enter the Kettlebell. To get going as soon as possible, go with Simple & Sinister.

 
10/10 Max Shanks saved my life!
 
By Edward Maulhardt / Port Hueneme, CA, US

I met Max at my RKCll cert in St.Paul he was my group leader. From the very first time met him he made feel good about my choice .I was the oldest and heaviest person there!I had some shoulder problems and knee mobility in general.He got me through it and I am very grateful for all he has done for me and my instructors.I had four instructors go through his HKC,RKC and RKCll certifications.The book is great Beth and Max are awesome!

 
10/10 Love this book!
 
By Jessica Dowdy / Rome, GA, USA

As a brand new HKC instructor I found this book very useful and informative. I will definitely be using this in the future as a reference to go back to. Beth and Max make the exercises come to life in the pictures. Max did an excellent job describing each exercise so that even a beginner can understand. Thanks Max and Dragon Door for always providing top notch products!

 
10/10 Super Awesome
 
By Moses Correa / Escape Fitness, NJ, USA

I love this book, it has been a constant reminder to perfect my kettlebell skills that I learned at my RKC 1 and 2. It is also extremely popular at the gym I work at. I made the "mistake" of bringing it in and setting it on my desk and kept catching people reading it!

Job well done Max!

 
5/10 Nice pictures!
 
By Al Lyman / Old Saybrook, CT, United States

The pictures are great. Very high quality. I was dissapointed in the content however. Yes, there is some good info for beginners, but overall much less information for more experienced users than I was hoping for. Similarly, assuming a beginner WOULD pick this book up, it doesn't contain many of the important images or tips crucial for proper learning of the skills. Is the author and his model an expert with the KB? Of course, yes! And the pictures are beautiful. Its almost more a coffee table book than an instructional manual in my opinion.

 
10/10 Great book, beautiful photos, awesome programming.
 
By Crystal Williams / Saint Cloud, Minnesota, United States

Master the Kettlebell is a great resource to have at the studio. I refer to it frequently. The photos are very high-quality and the instructions are top-notch. I especially like the programming ideas. It offers several templates for daily and weekly training.

 
10/10 Excellent Visual for Kettlebells
 
By STANLEY PAULEY / New Boston, Texas, USA

This is an excellent source for the study of kettlebells and their exercises. The movements in this book will increase your ability, agility and to grow stronger. I have used this book to help with several programs to help others achieve kettlebell success. Swing'em

 
10/10 Take your work out to the Max!
 
By Jonas Larsryd / Stockholm, Sweden, Sweden

This is a book you should have in your digital library, without a doubt!
Since I like to think we're continuously learning and developing this makes it a book for the novice as well as the more experienced. Max really keeps it straight forward. I myself, as a RKC trainer and Pt, got a different angle and deeper knowledge of programming. That is beneficial for my clients and their progress makes me happy. And the benefits for the beginners? They will greatly appreciate the short concise texts followed up with photos showing good posture from start to stop position. They will understand the philosophy behind Max' teachings and that will make them better every day!
thank you Max

 
9/10 Great book
 
By Eric Nordquist / Lafayette, Louisiana, United States

This book is very informative coming from someone that has never done kettlebell routines.

 
5/10 NOT A WORKOUT BOOK
 
By Ned R / Tallahassee, FL, USA

I was expecting a workout book, with examples of kettlebell exercises and routines.
This book is more for an instructor. OK if you want to fly at 10,000 feet. Disappointed in what I bought.

 
6/10 Photo heavy, instruction light
 
By Patrick Garner / Northborough, MA, USA

As a level II CrossFit KB instructor, I'm always seeking new insights into KB technique. This book is a tremendous photo resource. I've already used it with several clients to illustrate correct form. My critique though is that if you still in an early learning curve, this book will not be helpful. Technique is essential when kettlebelling to avoid injury. And the author says very little about any of the key moves, either in terms of how to get there or what to avoid.

So I would rate it as a wonderful resource for advanced practitioners and an aspirational resource at best for those still learning. In the end I still find it curious that the author says so little. A picture if worth a 1,000 words? Not when you're learning KBs.

If you're in that learning curve, try the KB bible by Jeff Martone, or one of Pavel's many KB books.

 
8/10 Easy to use
 
By Alec Dewdney / Warkworth, Ontario, Canada

Attractive book with very clear illustrations.

 
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