Sunday, July 26, 2015


I'm excited to launch my new Train With Fury Online Coaching Program! Looking to crush a kettlebell or DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Cert? Want to dive deeper into Orignal Strength? I've got you. ONLINE COACHING is now available! 

My online package includes, program design, a live session via skype, facetime or google, email and phone support. 

Previous students have made dramatic results and nailed instructor certifications!

Email: to get started.


Thursday, July 23, 2015


by James Newman, DVRT Chief Instructor

ultimate sandbag training
I’m really loving all the awesome DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Flows that have been posted recently. As a “movement” guy, I can’t think of a better way to train and challenge movement than with Flows. The problem is most people don’t know what a DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Flow is, or why they would want to use one. Even those familiar with DVRT might have a hard time figuring out how to start putting their own flows together, let alone how to include them in their programming. Flows can seem super complicated, but they’re really pretty easy to create, and can be a great way to introduce movement based training to your clients. Flows can be a powerful tool in your training arsenal, but you have to know what they are and where to begin.

What is a DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Flow?

First off, a DVRT Flow is a type of complex. Now complexes have been around forever, and have typically been associated with Barbells, Dumbbells and Kettlebells. DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Complexes however, allow for some truly unique progressions and variations not typically seen with more traditional complexes and a great example is the DVRT Flow.
A traditional complex is when one exercise contains several exercises, and the rules for creating them are pretty simple.
Choose two or more movements/exercises
Pick one implement (Choose your load according to your goals and weakest movement/exercise)
Perform the same number of reps for each movement/exercise (generally a 5-10 rep range)
Don’t put it down until your set is finished
All the exercises should transition easily from one to another
For example: 5 Deadlifts followed immediately by 5 Bent Over Rows followed by 5 Power Cleans…..That’s one set. Perform a specified number of sets or do As Many Rounds/ Sets as Possible for a given time. Complexes are famous for their ability to do a tremendous amount of work in a short time, build strength, conditioning and torch body fat.
A DVRT Flow is only slightly different from a traditional complex. During a Flow you perform just one repetition of an exercise followed immediately by one repetition of another exercise. For example, one Clean to the Fist followed by one Squat and one Overhead Press, these three movements combined equals one rep. Now this is a relatively easy (depending on the load) three movement flow performed in just one plane of motion, but Flows can have nearly unlimited movements and travel through multiple planes of motion, and as the complexity increases so does the intensity.
ultimate sandbag training
Why should I Flow?
A DVRT Flow complex is designed to allow us to transition quickly from one exercise to another, giving us the opportunity to create some truly incredible movement oriented drills that can best be likened to the training seen in Martial Arts, Yoga, Gymnastics and even Dance. Flows can be a fantastic way to challenge and creatively express yourself with movement while still allowing us to perform a tremendous amount of work.
When you first start performing Flows the feeling is of a flowing athletic strength that uniquely challenges not just our functional movement patterns but also our ability to transition from one movement pattern to the next.......and this is what makes DVRT Flows so incredibly powerful and unique.
In a typical complex the transition from one exercise to the next might be where one would grab a quick breath as you reset and get ready to groove the next exercise…..
in a DVRT Flow it is during the transitions that the real work starts to we try to manage the shifting load of the USB while transitioning from one movement pattern to the next. Being able to put on the brakes, accelerate and decelerate while changing movements and directions is truly what being functional in sports and in life is all about. Being able to maintain postural control and alignment while moving and transitioning between functional movement patterns while under load.

Transitions train the reflexive nature of the core muscles .....ALL THE CORE MUSCLES….they turn on and off the way they are designed and needed to so that we can perform athletically, and not like a robot.
ultimate sandbag training
As coaches and trainers the concern and the question is always, how well do our exercises and programming carry over to the field and to our everyday lives and activities. Truly "functional Fitness is about how well we can move from one pattern to the next. The DVRT system teaches us that it isn't enough to just teach someone to hinge or squat, push or pull. To be truly functional we have to be able to do so while moving and resisting in varying planes, body positions, holding positions, tempos and loads. DVRT Flows allow us to train all of these variables almost simultaneously.
With a bit of planning and done correctly DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Flows can be one of the most fun and effective means to building truly functional strength, getting in shape, building flexibility, increasing strength and getting lean.
Today I am giving you a few simple flows that will demonstrate some ways to start building your DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Flows and increasing the natural strength of your body. 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015


By Steve “Coach Fury” Holiner

DVRT Master Chief, Senior RKC, OS Instructor, MFF’s Strongest Film Major

Welcome back! On a very special episode of “Nailing the DVRT Clean and Press Test” we’re going to cover something that is crucial to life itself… BREATHING!

Strength wasn’t an issue when I first trained for the DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Clean and Press Test, my conditioning was. I would lose my breath to an unholy degree and miss reps and accrue ridiculous amounts of fatigue. To be clear, my conditioning in terms of the RKC Snatch Test (100 24kg kettlebell snatches in 5 minutes) was spectacular. I had a 28kg Snatch test pretty dialed in. The Clean and Press Test is a different animal when it comes to breathing.

Let’s take a moment to talk about quality “diaphragmatic” breathing. We want to inhale through the nose, using our diaphragm and breathing low into our belly. We brace around that belly of air, then let out a sharp “hiss exhale” as we explode through the concentric phase of motion. Repeat.

A kettlebell snatch (or KB swing, Ultimate Sandbag Clean or Ultimate Sandbag Snatch) has a pretty easy and comfortable pattern in terms of breathing. You would inhale on the downswing and let out that sharp “hiss” exhale on the upswing. We can simplify this as a normal 2 step breathing pattern with 1 inhale and 1 exhale per rep.

I’ve found the DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Clean and Press Test to have a 7 STEP BREATHING PATTERN

  • Inhale before the clean. *This inhale is only needed at the first rep of a set. Once you’re repping you’ll go from stage 6 to 2. 
  • Exhale at the clean.
  • Inhale in the USB Front Load position.
  • Exhale at the Push Press. 
  • Inhale as you pull the USB back into the Front Load position. *This is also the ideal spot to take a rest break if needed. While you’ll be forced to maintain the USN in the front hold the USB, this will allow you 
  • Hold your breath as you un-clean the USB to the floor.
  • Start back at Stage 2. *See note in stage 1!
I have found the above steps to be a winning breathing strategy. Is it the only plan of attack? Hell no! It’s just the one I KNOW that WORKS.

That’s been our very special episode of the “Nailing the DVRT Clean and Press Test” series. And now you know, and knowing is half the battle. Yo Joe!

The series finale is up next! Stay tuned.
-Fury out

Don't Miss Coach Holiner Teaching An Upcoming DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Course Boston HERE

Monday, July 20, 2015


By Steve "Coach Fury" Holiner

DVRT Master Chief, Senior RKC, MFF Kaiju Guy, OS Instructor

Welcome back! So you want some more Fury wisdom on how to nail the DVRT Clean and Press Test? It would be my pleasure. Check this out.

The name of the test itself is a little misleading. It’s actually not a Clean and Press Test… wait for it…it’s a Clean to PUSH PRESS Test!

Mind you, all of the information that the DVRT Team has provided coaches it as a Push Press. Yet, at every cert many strong men and women fail the test because they try to strict press every rep. That’s 40-50 winded reps being grinded out in 5 minutes.
ultimate sandbag training
That isn’t to say I haven’t seen a few folks leave victorious this way, but I have seen a BUTT LOAD more fail that way.

What’s a push press? Great question. After reading my last article about nailing the clean to fist, you now own it with skill and precision. Now that Ultimate Sandbag is resting soundly on the top of your fists, pull yourself down into a ¼ squat and then drive hard through the floor, propelling the Ultimate Sandbag overhead and saving your shoulders and lats the majority of the work. Think of the push press as an assisted press. The lower half of the body creates enough momentum to assist in getting that Ultimate Sandbag overhead.

This is the crucial “second float” during the test. Float 1: Ultimate Sandbag to Fists. Float 2: Ultimate Sandbag from Front Load to Overhead Lockout. Be prepared to finish the press.

Push pressing will make your test soooooo much easier!

Think about it this way, would you rather use just your shoulders, triceps and lats to make 80 pounds fly overhead, or would you rather recruit legs, hips, ass, shoulders, triceps and lats to do it? When it comes to a specific number of reps in certain timeframe, I’m using as much of my body’s strong parts to do it.

Now that we have the USB in a beautiful standing plank with the USB overhead, we need to pull the USB back to the front load position. *This is worth repeating: pull the USB back to the front load position. Many, many folks will let the USB drop all the way down from the top. Ladies and gentlemen, that is not only bad form, but it’s also hazardous to many important parts of your body. Don’t worry, we still love you, but let’s clean that up.

From the Front Load position, re-clean the Ultimate Sandbag to Fist and repeat.

What’s a great way to train my push press?

1. Train the test with push press. Simple. Check out my original article on programming the test:CONQUERING THE BEAST
2. Push press with your test weight or heavier. Push pressing will allow you to get a heavier USB to that crucial lockout. Make friends with a heavier Ultimate Sandbag. Fall in love with your test weight.
3. You can work the Thruster (or Long Press). Pull into a full quat with the USB on your fists, then drive out of the hole. This will help proved the momentum to get that USB overhead. It will also help train a really strong drive from the 1.4 squat position.

Take some of these to heart and let me know how they work for you.

Nail the clean to fist. Nail the push press. Nail the Clean and Press Test!

Stay tuned for even more tips!

Find a DVRT certification or workshop near you CLICK HERE 

Yours in strength and fury!

-Fury out

Steve “Coach Fury” Holiner’s superhero headquarters is Mark Fisher Fitness in NYC. Fury’s a DVRT Master Chief Instructor, Senior RKC, and an Original Strength. He is available for classes, semi-privates, instructor training and programming at MFF. He also has availability for private training at Catalyst S.P.O.R.T. Check out IG @iamcoachfury and Twitter @coachfury for more info.


by Steve "Coach Fury" Holiner
MFF Godzilla Geek, OS Instructor, DVRT Master Chief and Senior RKC. 

Hey gang! Today, I’m here to talk to you about strength. Specifically, I’m here to talk to you about ORIGINAL STRENGTH! This is going to be a quick introduction to give you a sense of why we do certain things at MFF. This is also going to be the jump off point for an MFF series of blogs and videos by yours truly. Ok, so what’s Original Strength?
Before barbells, kettlebells and Shake Weights, we were all born with a pre-packaged strength training system. The heart of that system is our developmental sequence. Very specific cultural differences aside, ideally we all mentally and physically develop the same way. Created by Tim Anderson and Geoff Neupert, Original Strength restores movement, builds strength and increases resiliency by tapping directly back into the developmental sequence. We call this PRESSING RESET.
There are 5 types of resets. 
If you currently train at MFF, some of this is going to seem pretty damn familiar, right? Yeah, we’ve been including OS resets in our warm-ups and cool downs. *FUN FACT: I met MFF’s very own Kyle "Beast" Langworthy for the first time at an OS Workshop.

Diaphragmatic Breathing: Think about it, healthy babies come out of the vag breathing wonderfully and stress free. Babies breathe fully into their bellies making great use of their diaphragm. This is our safe mode PARASYMPATHETIC breathing. Rest and digest. The other type of breathing is SYMPATHETIC. That’s our “please don’t beat me up” breathing.

Head Control: Next up on the developmental chain we have to build the strength to hold up our enormous noggins. Along with this, we feed our brains with visual stimulus using our eyes to lead the head. This sets us up with balance and coordination.

Rolling: Rolling around on the floor is great for many reason. For babies, this is the only way they’re able to actually move from point A to point B. They haven’t built the strength to crawl yet. They just roll around trying to get to what they want. Another huge plus for rolling is that we got all the amazing tactile stimulation of the skin. We literally map and record the parts of our body for our brain to get the full picture of our being. Think of this as a motion capture suit with a gazillion more sensors attached.

Rocking: Let’s be honest here—rocking feels good. It’s down right soothing. This is also the place in time where OS starts to build in some gentle strength training as we hold our selves up. Rocking integrates all of the joints and plays a huge part in setting our authentic/reflexive posture. What does “authentic/reflexive posture” mean? That’s the way our spine holds its natural curves on its own. We can’t walk around trying to force our posture all the time. We have to build the reflexive strength for our spine to maintain it’s proper curves without thinking about it.

Crawling: Here’s where the gentle strength training of rocking becomes not so gentle. Crawling is huge. We dial in our core and really fuse the mind-body connection when we crawl or do other types of contra-lateral (opposite arm/leg) or midline crossing movements. Crawling also sets us up for walking, marching, skipping and sprinting.
So there’s your quick intro to Original Strength and the OS Resets. Keep an eye out in the coming weeks for a series of MFF/OS Reset blogs and videos. As a teacher for Original Strength, I’ve seen, felt and done some incredible things using the resets. Trust in Fury, OS is the real deal.  

Feel free ask any questions below.

I love you guys!

-Fury out

Friday, July 10, 2015


By Steve “Coach Fury” Holiner, Senior RKC, DVRT Master Chief Instructor

HKC 2015 Japan Camp Foster

The HKC is awesome.

Do you need more than that? Then keep reading.

I’ve been fortunate enough to teach/co-teach five Hardstyle Kettlebell Certification (HKC) workshopsin the last 8 months. My buddy Josh Henkin, Master RKC and DVRT Creator, and I had the great privilege of teaching two of those HKC workshops to the United States Marines. I taught the other three workshops in New York City, Kansas City and Connecticut. Somewhat to my surprise, I get a deeper appreciation and respect for the HKC every time I lead a new group of candidates.

The HKC was my first step down the incredible road to becoming a fitness professional. It was the first certification/workshop I had ever taken and it was the first time I ever "coached" someone. The pull-up test back then was the first time I trained for a specific goal. It was the first of many "strength tests" I would take in my career. But at the time I went to my first HKC workshop, I was just an enthusiast with zero interest or intention of becoming a coach. My intentions changed shortly after that workshop. The HKC initial seeded the roots of what I would become. A few months later, I went through my first RKC workshop. I took my first DVRT certification with Josh Henkin a month after that. The rest is history.
HKC 2015 Miramar Group Get-Ups

Here are the 7 BEST things about the HKC:
  1. It nails down the basics. The HKC covers the kettlebell swing, get-up and goblet squat. These are the three big fundamental movements. More importantly, the HKC provides you with the exceptional education to progress, regress, troubleshoot, coach AND perform these three movements.
  2. The HKC is enthusiast friendly. If you’re someone that LOVES kettlebells, or you are thinking about becoming a trainer, this is the perfect first start. By focusing on the three lifts, you are less likely to be overwhelmed—which can happen at other one day workshops. If you do feel a bit overwhelmed, the HKC manual is pure gold and will support everything which is taught at the workshop.
  3. For more seasoned trainers/coaches, the HKC will sharpen your own kettlebell technique, coaching ability and likely your own movement patterns. Time and time again, we are able to help trainers get a greater understanding of how their bodies work.
  4. You will get stronger—and more importantly, so will the people you train.
  5. Hardstyle techniques will benefit other types of training. Improving movement and learning to create tension (and relaxation) will show great rewards in anything else you do.
  6. The HKC is an excellent step toward the more advanced three-day RKC certification. Not only do certified HKC instructors get a $200 discount toward an RKC workshop registration, they almost always perform better at the RKC.
  7. Our community rocks! There are so many amazing people who are part of the HKC/RKC/DVRT/PCC/Dragon Door family. Come join the family!
Steve Holiner Coaching HKC Goblet Squat
I’ve grown to really love teaching the HKC. The more I teach it, the more I see what it’s done for me. The more I coach, the more I find the importance of the swing, get-up and goblet squat.

Try this workout: 

Get-up x1 on the right side
Swings x10
Goblet squat X1
Get-up x1 left side
Swings x9
Goblet squat x2
Get-up x1 right side
Swings x8
Goblet Squat x3
Get-up x1 left side
Swings x7
Goblet squats x4
…Go back to the right for the GU. Swings continue to descend until you hit 1 rep. Goblet squats continue to go up until you hit 10 reps.
Kettlebell Swings at Kansas City HKC 2015


Click here to find an HKC Workshop near you. You can also reach out to me at if you’d like to host an HKC Workshop.

Yours in strength and fury,


Steve Holiner ThumbnailSteve "Coach Fury" Holiner’s superhero headquarters is Mark Fisher Fitness in NYC. Fury is a DVRT Master Chief Instructor and Senior RKC. He is available for classes, semi-privates, instructor training and programming at MFF. He is also available for private training at Catalyst S.P.O.R.T. Check out his, or follow him at:, and for more info.


By Steve “Coach Fury” Holiner

DVRT Master Chief, Senior RKC, OS Instructor, MFF Rad Dad

Hey buddy, Let’s talk about the dreaded DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Clean and Press Test. Yup, it’s a bitch.
ultimate sandbag training

But it’s also completely doable if you train properly for it. Having tested many folks at this point, I’ve seen a big number of common flaws that cost people the win on cert day. What’s the biggest flaw?

Not getting the float on the Clean to Fist.


Yeah, Ultimate Sandbag Training (USB) cleans fall in the “ballistic” category. We need to generate enough force to propel the USB off of the floor high enough to get our fists underneath it. 

Where does the float drive from? Your legs, hips and ass. The Ultimate Sandbag Training Clean to Fist has similar properties to the beloved Kettlebell Swing. It is even more similar to the single rep KB Dead Swing which starts from the floor every rep. We hike the bell back, snap into our plank, make the KB float and then reverse the motion back to the starting position.

There are 3 key differences between a Swing and the USB.

-We don’t hike the Ultimate Sandbag. It starts on top of our feet. 
-Our feet will be narrower (more hip width, than shoulder). 
-We are projecting the USB up, close to the body, and not forward.

On the flipside, there are 3 key similarities between the Swing and the USB.

-Power is generated by driving the feet hard through the floor using your hips, legs and ass. -----Push that floor down, find your plank and find it fast!
-We do not use our arms or backs to pull the Ultimate Sandbag up. In kettlebell land, the arms do what we call “taming the arc.” The path or “arc” of the kettlebell in the swing is determined by the length of the extended arm. In the DVRT Clean to Fist, the arms guide the USB vertically close to the body. Guide is the key word here. Not pull, yank, or muscle. 
-We decelerate the eccentric phase (think backswing) so it lands softly back to the starting position.

Now once you nail your float, you simply have to get your fist underneath. This will be way smoother and easier when your arms aren’t tensed from yanking the USB up. Keep your elbows high and then scoop your fist underneath as the USB hits the right height. This will save you a ton of wasted energy and keep you fresher for those last 10-15 critical reps. Every try to do more pullups after you hang from the bar between several reps. How’s that usually work out for you? It’s the same with the Clean to Fist. Make each rep crisp, light and efficient.

How do we get there?

Well depending on how much work you need here are a few things to try.

Deadlift a heavier USB and/or alter the holding position or foot position (ex. Front loaded Good Mornings, Sprinter Stance DLs).

Front Loaded Good Mornings are a powerful exercise to developing more core stability and power through the hips.
High Pull with an appropriate weight that allows you to generate enough force/float and then go heavier.

Ideally, you would train to the point of using a heavier USB for High Pulls than your Clean and Press Test weight. Nail high pulls heavier than test weight and watch how easy it becomes to drive your test USB into the air and scoop your fists underneath.

Nail the float. Nail the Clean to Fist. Nail the Clean and Press Test.

Stay tuned for more tips!

-Fury out

Steve “Coach Fury” Holiner’s superhero headquarters is Mark Fisher Fitness in NYC. Fury’s a DVRT Master Chief Instructor, Senior RKC, and an Original Strength. He is available for classes, semi-privates, instructor training and programming at MFF. He also has availability for private training at Catalyst S.P.O.R.T. Check out  IG @furyinc and Twitter @coachfury for more info.