The AKLU is a registered 501c3 non-profit
I began my kettlebell journey through WKC back in 2010. I got my first certification through WKC in 2011 and started competing in 2012. After a short go as a Muay Thai fighter during which I permanently injured my knee, I had to leave Muay Thai and focused my energy on kettlebell sport. I have been on Team USA four times and have competed in three IUKL world championships, 2015 Ireland winning 5th place, 2016 Kazakhstan winning 3rd place, and 2017 South Korea winning 2nd place. I also competed in Saint Petersburg, Russia in 2015. In 2018, I began competing in the professional division on 32kg long cycle and have competed twice in the pro class. By my side has always been my best friend and my greatest supporter, my wife Lindsay, who sacrifices her time so I can focus on training and coaching, and I will always be thankful for her support of my obsession. I have been coached by Scott Shetler, Chris Duffey, Igor Morozov, and Greggor Sobocan.
In addition to competing I also train several kettlebell sport athletes and have coached two female athletes to CMS level on single arm long cycle. I own a gym, Pride Conditioning and Rebel Kettlebell Club, in Charlotte, North Carolina. I also own a screen printing business, Revolution Screen Printing and an apparel business BFR Apparel. On top of my businesses, I have authored two books available on amazon, and I have several more books on the way.
My love for kettlebell sport runs very deep and I am very passionate about my dedication to this sport, growing the sport, improving my technique and improving my lifters and helping absolutely anyone who asks for help or advice. I truly believe that the US could have the best national team in the world.
Richard Morton, MBA
I’m a Strategic Business Analyst and computer geek to pay my bills. Making the world a better place one body at at time in my “off” hours as a Personal Fitness Trainer, Group Exercise and Kettlebell Sport Coach. I have been been a kettlebell sport “veteran” athlete since 2013, competing in and attending four IUKL World Championships and over 30 North American competitions. I’m also a certified kettlebell sport judge holding certifications from IUKL, IKMF, CKA and AKA. I’m currently being coached by Ken Blackburn, knowing that to be the best coach, one must have the best coach! Before getting into kettlebells I was just another fat lazy American. Kettlebells and Kettlebell Sport changed my life, I want to grow the kettlebell sport community free of politics and rancor. For the lifters, by the lifters! And to get people in my demographic up and moving!!
Sarah Fornero, Ed.D.
My day job is serving as a University Dean and Vice President, but my kettlebell hobby fills consumes most of my evenings and weekends. My career focuses on leveraging technology for teaching and learning, in particular online learning. I train with Mike Salazar at Windy City Kettlebell Club. I’ve earned one Master of Sport rank (20 kg Biathlon) and numerous Candidate Master of Sport ranks (16 kg TALC, Biathlon, Jerk, Snatch, Triathlon; 20 kg OALC, TALC). At international competitions I placed 1st (16 kg OALC, 68 kg+) and 3rd (16 kg TALC, Open) at the 2017 IUKL World Championships; 1st (16 kg TALC, Open), 2nd (16 kg Snatch, 68 kg+), and 3rd (20 kg TALC, Open) at the 2018 IUKL World Championships; and Absolute Middle-Weight Female Champion (16 kg Triathlon, Open) at the 2018 WAKSC Worlds - CaliOpen. I’m also a dog-mom to an energetic shepherd mutt.
Jenn Casey, MBA
I am a homeschooling mom of three kids and entrepreneur (my husband is an entrepreneur too) living in a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia. At the age of 39, I got off my couch and started working out at CrossFit Kennesaw, where I am now a Level 2 CF Trainer, and also run the CrossFit Kids and Swing Fit (kettlebell) programs. I started competing in Kettlebell Sport in 2013 when at the time there was only one competition in the state of Georgia every year. In 2015, my teammate and I took over running competitions and Georgia Kettlebell Sport was born. To date, we’ve organized over a dozen competitions, workshops, and participated in local community functions (at the Braves Stadium among others), spreading the love of Kettlebell Sport all over Atlanta and the Southeast. I also have coached many kids in Kettlebell Sport and currently have a team of 4 awesome teenage girls who have the goal of competing nationally and internationally, and our youth team is going to grow in 2019. My own coach is the amazing Ken Blackburn, who helps me improve all the time. Currently I’m training 16kg triathlon because I love double jerks, and have a love-hate relationship with LC and snatch, so I figure why not keep at it? I’ve competed all over the country, about 20 competitions total, and earned Absolute Winner in Biathlon at the national championship last May. I have had the honor of competing at the IUKL World Championship events in Seoul, South Korea (2017) where I took 4th in 16kg OALC and Daugavpils, Latvia (2018) where I competed in 16kg Double Jerk and 16kg Double LC, taking 1st place in my veterans age group. I hope to keep plugging away at this sport and making progress for decades to come.
Tina Yerkes, Phd
International business executive by day - garage gym kettlebell lifter by night (and owner HellzBellz LLC). I have spent my entire career managing aspects of non-profit organizations and currently oversee global operations. I’ve represented team USA three times (IUKL South Korea, IUKL Latvia, and WKSF Italy) totaling 8 medals: gold in veteran snatch, gold veteran double long cycle, silver in amateur snatch, silver in veteran OALC, silver in veteran snatch, bronze in amateur snatch, and 2 bronze in amateur double long cycle. I currently compete in both amateur and veteran categories, double long cycle and snatch. I hold an MS in veteran snatch, a CMS in snatch and a CMS in double long cycle. I’ve been training 2 years with Ken Blackburn (IKFF) and with a strength coach Dan Hunter (Crossfit Ypsilanti). Prior to finding KBs, I competed in Olympic lifting, trained in martial arts and played soccer. I also juggle the busy lives of three teenage boys, all highly competitive soccer players.