Kettlebell Athletic Training (K.A.T.) Fitness System: kettlebell juggling skills with an edge

Originally published by Dragon Door, September 1, 2010

You’ve seen kettlebell juggling before. Maybe even thrown a double helicopter, or tried your hand at an over-the-shoulder toss.

But unless you’ve landed a 35-lb double rotation “Phat-Boy” flip on the fly, or caught the rare glimpse of Gus Petersen honing his game in the foothills outside Denver, you’ve never seen anything like the Kettlebell Athletic Training (K.A.T.) Fitness System.

When it comes to kettlebell juggling, this is a whole different animal.

“It’s not for the faint of heart,” says Petersen of the system he developed, which draws on the inherent athleticism of kettlebell training to turn workouts into a hard-core game that demands as much fortitude and tenacity as it does focus and skill.

Enhancing athleticism

This highly innovative system of kettlebell juggling—the first to incorporate two kettlebells, mobility, and various planes of motion into the mix—is designed to challenge practitioners mentally and physically while developing various components of athleticism that are essential to peak performance:

  • Hand-eye coordination
  • Functional strength
  • Cardiovascular endurance
  • Mental focus
  • Mind-body synergy
  • Lightning-fast reflexes
  • Cat-like agility.

Pushing mental and physical boundaries

"There’s definitely an edge to K.A.T. juggling that requires a taste for adventure and risk-taking—a willingness to push some boundaries and play outside the box, if you will," says Petersen. "It’s physically demanding on multiple levels, but the mental aspect adds an element of challenge that makes workouts feel more like sport than work. That's where your training becomes more about fun and less about drudgery—and that’s when
you start seeing serious results."

Drudgery is counterintuitive to Petersen and his company ProEdge Kettlebells, which places a premium on adventure.

Growing up in Colorado, Petersen skied, backpacked, and worked as a ranch hand and a carpenter, among other occupations, to fund his various adventures. His passion for highly challenging outdoor endeavors culminated with a stint in Nepal as an assistant Outward Bound instructor in 1979, an experience that would guide the path of his career from that point forward.

"Play hard. Get strong. Live adventurously. That’s the philosophy I’ve lived my life by, and it’s the concept I built my business on," says Petersen, for whom working at playing hard has long been a way of life.

Petersen says working on ranches and job sites taught him the value of real work in building strength and endurance. "I’m not into spending hours a day in front of a mirror pumping iron or walking a treadmill," he says. "And I’m over being cooped up in a gym. Life is short. I’m about getting out there and living it."

Unleashing the K.A.T.

Always drawn to innovative training methods that build true strength, Petersen became an early adopter of kettlebell training. He earned his Russian Kettlebell Challenge (RKC) certification through Dragon Door in 2004 and graduated with one of the seminal classes of RKC Level II instructors in 2005. That same year, he branched off from Cherry Creek Athletic Club, the Denver club he has been with for 20 years, and founded his business, ProEdge Kettlebells.

The results he experienced with kettlebells were unlike any he’d experienced with other strength-training methods, and he began using kettlebells exclusively with all of his clients. Results paid the bills. But it was the athleticism and playfulness of kettlebell juggling that really captured his imagination and got his creative juices flowing.

Kettlebell-less on a Hawaii vacation in 2007, he grew restless between surf days, resorting to “virtual workouts” to satisfy his growing passion for the art of kettlebell juggling. He began jotting down concepts and techniques, sketching out the juggling moves springing from his active imagination. Soon, he was getting up in the middle of the night to write down techniques as they came to him. “It was like opening the floodgates,” he recalls. He spent the next two years writing, experimenting, and refining.

Three years and five DVDs later, the K.A.T. was ready to be unleashed.

“Like a lot of Americans, I can’t help thinking beyond what is and exploring what could be,” says Petersen. With a tool as versatile as the kettlebell, I’ve had a great time redefining what is possible with kettlebell juggling.”

Although some would describe the K.A.T. Fitness System as extreme or hard-core, it is also artfully approachable. Petersen says he was determined to develop a system that anyone with commitment and perseverence could learn by watching and practicing diligently. To that end, he took care to base the system on a logical progression that builds skills gradually from the ground up.

“The K.A.T. Fitness System provides a clear, step-by-step progression that will safely enable you to improve your athletic skills, strength, and endurance while enhancing your mental focus and acuity,” Petersen says. “Anybody can follow this system, and everyone can benefit from it.”

Whether you’re an elite athlete looking to gain a competitive edge, an amateur athlete seeking an effective way to enhance your sports performance, a true warrior in need of extreme skills, or a weekend warrior gearing up for your next challenging adventure, the K.A.T. Fitness System is designed to build the skills you need for living on the edge.


Order your DVDs today, and get ready to hone your game and your physique with the most adventurous training system you’ve ever encountered.

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