Our ambassadors are passionate about fitness, fun, and CHALK! Read more about them below.
Brittany van Schravendijk
Brittany van Schravendijk is recognized as one of the top Kettlebell Sport athletes in the world, holding 4 Master of Sport titles and 3 World Records. When she's not competing, she works at KOR Strength and Conditioning in San Diego, as the Head Kettlebell Sport Coach. Brittany is passionate about growing the sport and you can find many training tips and videos on her YouTube and Instagram (link below). Brittany's certifications include CSCS-NSCA, SFC-L1, and Agatsu Mobility.
"Any skill worth having is worth working for."
Favorite tool to train with: KETTLEBELL
How much chalk she uses: Let's just say I spend most of my life covered in chalk.
Favorite grip strength exercise: Kettlebell snatch
Why VIKN: I'm a chalk monster and VIKN chalk is the best chalk around! I love to support brands that I believe in.
Correy Jones is a fitness and nutrition consultant in the San Diego area. He coaches at studio gym Fitwall in Solana Beach, and at CrossFit Del Mar. Correy specializes in Crossfit, powerlifting, and weighlifting, all of which he competes in.
CrossFit certifications: CF-L1, CF-L2, CFM, CFK, and CFPL.
Favorite tool to train with: Barbell
How much chalk he uses: Way more then necessary
Favorite grip strength exercise: Suitcase carries
Why VIKN: VIKN chalk is great. I prefer it over any chalk any day. Plus I am a Viking! My mother is from Iceland.
Rik Brown, aka Mr. Mace Man, is a trainer and seminar teacher out of Orange County. He specializes in mace swinging, kettlebells, and heavy clubs, and took home 1st place at the AKA Vintage Strength Games Mace Competition. Rik trains at Long Beach Kettlebell Club and does online coaching for mace competitions. He is a father of 3, grandfather of 9, and owner of 17 maces.
"You are as old as your doubts, and as young as your dreams."
Favorite tool to train with: Maces and heavy clubs
How much chalk he uses: For every workout - with all 17 of my maces!
Favorite grip strength exercise: Farmers walks and timed bar hangs
Why VIKN: I travel the world teaching what I love. I can't run out of chalk!
Mark was one of the first personal trainers in California in 1979, and opened up the first kettlebell centric gym called Girya, The Art of Strength in Palo Alto in 2003. Over the years Mark has specialized in gymnastics, ultra running, competitive bodybuilding and powerlifting, and hardstyle kettlebell training. He holds the Florida State All Around gymnastics record and has coached Olympic gymnasts, two professional bodybuilders, and one of the strongest female lifters of all time. Mark is a personal trainer and coaches out of his garage gym in San Jose, CA, which he calls Stones Gym aka The Rifstonian Institute.
For Mark’s 60th birthday he celebrated by doing 100 48kg single arm swings in 5 minutes.
Favorite tool to train with: Kettlebell
How much chalk he uses: ALL THE CHALK :)
Favorite grip strength exercise: Heavy single arm kettlebell swings
Why VIKN: I've had my hands in a chalk bowl almost daily since I was 14 in gymnastics and have come to be an aficionado of chalk. I've used virtually every type of chalk available all over the world and think VIKN chalk is the best ever. VIKN's texture, density, grippiness and retention on your hands puts it at the top of the list. Plus the logo is too cool!
Tristan is a personal trainer and powerlifting coach at Self Made Training Facility in San Marcos, CA. He has dabbled in sprinting, boxing, and bodybuilding, but finds his true calling in competitive powerlifting. Tristan prides himself on being able to teach his students how to move weight that they thought would never be possible. He does this through a blend of scholarly knowledge, nutritional science, and experience. His current goal is to become the strongest in his weight class, prepping for the Holiday Festival of Strength in Ventura, CA in order to qualify for the 2018 IPL World Championships in Moscow Russia.
Certifications: NASM (multiple), IPL Word Champ Qualifier, USPA Competitive Powerlifter, Former U.S. Army Paratrooper
Favorite tool to train with: Deadlift bar
How much chalk he uses: All of it. I’m literally covered on deadlifts days.
Favorite grip strength exercise: Deadlift
Why VIKN: I wanted to be part of the team for months now because I’ve been using VIKN chalk without even realizing it. Another guy from my gym bought it and it became an incredible asset to me and my team during our training. Finding decent chalk has grown to be rather difficult and with the latest push for liquid chalk everywhere, it’s nice to have the good reliable old school chalk that actually works. After meeting [Team VIKN] during the SelfMade kettlebell tournament, I felt as if the attitude towards building the brand the direction you were looking to go fit well with my mindset.
Dave Whitley is a performing strongman, speaker, and coach in Nashville, TN. He has been lifting since 1980, a martial artist since 1995, a kettlebell instructor since 2003, and a strongman since 2009. Dave owns a gym and also has a 'Shed of Strength' at his home. He is the VP of Dennis Rogers' Oldetime Strongman University, and has taught at instructor certifications including Amazing 12 Week Physique, RKC, and Strongfirst. Dave travels all over to speak, and his current personal goal is a combo feat with a 48kg kettlebell press and a 20lb hammer lever to the nose. He specializes in bending steel, leverage lifting, and smashing coconuts.
Coaching Certifications: Wim Hof Method, Original Strength, Biofeedback, Jook Lum kung fu, 1st dan in Hoshin Budo, & Hoshin Chi Kung.
Favorite tool to train with: Sledgehammers, steel, & kettlebells
How much chalk he uses: How much do you have? ;)
Favorite grip strength exercise: Hammer levering & steel bending
Why VIKN: I use a lot of chalk and am always looking for quality. I heard great things from some of the other VIKN ambassadors.
Marilyn Tuna has been a strength and mobility coach at Functional Fitness 858 in Perth, Australia for 6 years. As a child, Marilyn was shy and overweight, but years later some serious car accidents changed her life forever. After dealing with rehab, learning to walk again, and crippling anxiety, Marilyn decided to try weightlifting as an outlet and never looked back!
Marilyn prides herself on teaching healthy movement for lifters and new athletes, with form being the most important aspect of her teaching. As a single mother, business owner, and full time coach, Marilyn has still found time to compete. Her accomplishments include 2nd Place in deadlift and bench at the WAPA State Powerlifting Competition (2016, 2017), First Place Gold State Champion in deadlift, squat, and bench press at the WAPA State Powerlifting Full Meet (2017), and an Australian record in long cycle double bells after the IGSF Worlds in Greece (2017) where she lifted 16kg for 81 reps.
Favorite tool to train with: Kettlebell and Barbell
How much chalk she uses: I'm usually covered head to toe in it on a daily basis, I don't think I could live without it to be honest.
Favorite grip strength exercise: Deadlift, hands down
Why VIKN: I see myself as an ambassador in WA (Western Australia) and Australia wide for strength sports. I have a great passion for driving kettlebell sport here along with smart strength training practices. I feel I'm a good fit for the VIKN brand, being a strong woman and mother, athlete, and spokeswoman. Also I have a nickname here in WA ... It's the Viking woman ;) I never give up. EVER.
Jay Hunter is the owner Maverick’s Field House in Longwood, Florida. Jay specializes in kettlebell, barbell, and bodyweight training. His goal is to build a stronger human race. Check out his instagram feed to see his fitness ideology.
Jay's credentials include 7 years in the military, 20 years of fitness, Strongfirst Level 2 Instructor, and Beast Tamer.
Favorite tool to train with: Kettlebell
Favorite grip strength exercise: Heavy double cleans
How much chalk he uses: Enough to get the job done
Why VIKN: I believe our mindsets are on equal paths and that we have the same goals in mind
Gil Goodman is an engineer and entrepreneur living in Nashville, TN. He started sport climbing and bouldering in 2004 and loved it, but injured his shoulder in an ultimate frisbee accident. After rehabbing his shoulder, he continued weight training and became interested in powerlifting. Around that time, Gil also discovered Captains of Crush grippers and began grip training for fun. He eventually went for the #3 certification and attended his first grip competition.
In his second year of grip training and competing, Gil became the overall champion at South Jersey 4 and 2016 King Kong Grip Challenge. He holds class and world records in various gripper, thick bar, and pinch lifts. Gil's credentials include a StrongFirst SFG Level 1 Instructor and Captains of Crush #3 Certification, and he has performed world class feats including lifting the famous Thomas Inch Dumbbell, the York Blob, Blobzilla, and plate-pinching a pair of old-style York 45's.
Favorite tool to train with: The Flask
Favorite grip strength exercise: The Flask. Pinch strength has tremendous carryover to other forms of grip because thumb strength is so often ignored.
How much chalk he uses: I use chalk on my hands all the way up to the wrist (even on the backs of my hands) and all over my implements. It only takes one drop of sweat to compromise your friction.
Why VIKN: I see VIKN as one of the only companies promoting grip across multiple platforms. Working with VIKN can help me spread enthusiasm and information about grip strength, training, and competition.
John Odden is the owner of Empowered Strength in Bend, OR. He is a Strength Coach and Clinical Exercise Physiologist with 18 years of experience. Growing up John played high school sports, but lacked interest in the traditional team sports. After discovering the Scottish Highland Games he was hooked, and competed as an amateur and then as a professional from 2010-2014. John also competes as an Elite Class competitor in the StrongFirst Tactical Strength Challenge.
Certifications: ACSM-CEP; NSCA-CSCS, CPT; FMSII; StrongFirst - SFG II, SFB; Completed the Beast Tamer Challenge 2016
"Absorb what is useful, reject what is useless, and add to it what is uniquely your own."
Favorite tool to train with: Kettlebells
Favorite grip strength exercise: Farmer carries and bottoms up kettlebell exercises
How much chalk he uses: As much as my hands can hold
Why VIKN: I enjoy the [VIKN] posts and website content. I feel that I represent a unique breed of athlete that represents the VIKN brand well and will provide useful content. My passion is to challenge my body to complete feats of strength and I enjoy inspiring others along the way. I have always enjoyed attempting feats of strength myself and watching others as well.