My first exposure to kettlebells was through RKC, but after looking into it, I chose my certification through WKC. My reason is simple. No other style of kettlebell training produces better results. In other words, those who train with the WKC method outperform anyone else in the field. This does not happen by accident. The acquired ability is proof of the applied technique and methodology.
I still find value in the RKC. With the RKC, you can learn a wider variety of exercises. WKC focuses mostly on competitive exercises such as the swing, snatch, jerk and long cycle. But the WKC also looks outside of kettlebells to supplement kettlebell performance, where RKC tends to promote kettlebells as the all in all (a great marketing approach, but I wouldn’t want to live by it).
Another distinction between the two outfits can be seen in the style of kettlebells they produce. RKC uses cast-iron bells that vary in dimension from weight to weight. The handles are thick and the surface is rough. All of these factors lead to performance and function problems. However, WKC has spent considerable time and effort in producing their own unique style of kettlebell that is far more functional than any other on the market.
Their bells are made from machine-grade steel with finely-tuned dimensions on the handles so that they glide in transition. There is no difference in size regardless of weight; however, they are the only ones making a difference is dimension for gender. Yes, men’s bells are slightly larger than women’s bells. And all the newly designed bells are more ergonomic–they now have “dimples” so that they rest on the forearm better.
These developments are a testament to the WKC approach to perfection, which sets them above their competition.
The good news for all of us is that the WKC and RKC seem to be learning from each other, as competitors in business generally do. So I think the competition has made them both improve. Still, for me, I prefer the WKC, not to mention that their certification courses are far cheaper than those of the RKC.
It depends on what you plan to do with the kettle bells and perhaps where you are located. RKC and WKC are the two most recognized kettle bell certs in North America; however, each of these respective organizations have different philosophy.
RKC is strictly a hard style kettle bell training methodology. It’s established by Pavel Tsatsouline, and its method is ideal for developing a variety of exercise goals (e.g power, strength, weight loss, short term muscular endurance). The shape of the kettle bells used are (not surprisingly) the hard style versions, where the handle and horns are thick and can be a bit wider than the bell. The kettle bell used generally increases in size as the weight increases.
WKC is strictly gyra sport (i.e. kettle bell competition). This organization is established by Valery Fedorenko, and its method is ideal for those looking to compete or establish aerobic endurance or power endurance through the use of kettle bells. The shape of the kettle bells are the same no matter what the weight of the bell is. The upper limit of the kettle bell does stop at 32 kg, since nothing heavier is used in competition (at the moment). If you want to train with heavier kettle bells, you will have to eventually switch back to the hard style kettle bells.
I would say more people choose RKC over WKC. Generally, if you want to develop proper technique for kettle bell, RKC will give you that foundation. WKC is good in its own right, but the technique used is to train people for gyra sport. Most beginners looking at how a WKC person train might mistaken their technique for sloppy form or get the wrong idea of how to swing the kettle bell.
If you are up in Canada, Agatsu Kettlebell is the largest kettlebell certifying body in the country. Agatsu is largely hard style (like RKC), but will introduce gyra sport to their member, and will encourage their members to pursue a WKC if they so desire.
According to a book, written Lorna Kleidman (America’s First International Master Of Kettlebell Sport Two-Time World Kettlebel Sport Champion), she have been traveled to San Diego to learn authentic competitive Russian kettlebel lifting as part of a certified course.
The name of book is “Body Sculpting with Kettlebells for Woman”
May be soon, Michele, you will be next champion?