Call today (619) 764-1882

Strength & ConditioningTraining Testimonials

"I felt at home the moment I set foot inside this gym.  If you are looking for a classic, mature, workout then this is your place.  You can find any equipment here that other gyms have, and then some.  What this gym has, that no other gym has, is Dmitri, the owner and primary trainer.  Dmitri is a world class athlete and fitness trainer, and a world champion kettlebell competitor.


For the past year I have been under Coach Dmitri's expert tutelage, mostly working on cardio.  Coach has done things with me that I would not have though possible one year ago.  Coach has a way of knowing exactly how far to push in order to get the very most out of me.  I love the feeling that I get when I walk out of this gym after a workout.  There is no better feeling.
The atmosphere in this gym is like family.  Every time I come here, I know I am in for a terrific workout, but no matter how hard I am  training someone always provides a joke or a laugh.
I highly recommend the Russian Kettlebell Academy to anyone who is serious about their physical conditioning."
Jim McDowell



"...I believe being at this gym is one of the best decisions I've ever made in my life. It's been a great experience working every day with coach, he and his wife are great people to be around. Every day training with coach is a challenge. You not only tested physically, but mentally as well. You constantly pushed to the edge of what your capable of, only to consistently see improvements as time goes on. The more I train I find out things I didn't know I was capable of, and I've learned just how much I have it within myself. Overall, it's just been a very positive experience training at the gym.  So if you like me looking for more than just a way to lose weight but personal transformation as well, then this is the place for you..."

Michael F., E-3/ Navy/ Texas   February 2016


"Wow.  Dmitri Sataev’s workouts - and his overall way of fitting the workouts into a larger plan for your health, power and self-esteem - are the best I have ever encountered in my 22 years of working out in various disciplines.  Here is a true professional who loves what he does and has devoted his entire life not only to becoming a three-time world champion athlete, but also to mastering the art of coaching for power, strength, health, competition and also bodybuilding.   I think he has more than 30 years of experience, and it really makes a difference.  I have trained with all different levels of personal trainers, martial arts teachers and group fitness instructors, and truly Dmitri is the only one who has given me the right combination of expertise, attention, intelligence, the right amount of pushing, tough love, and the highest standards of fitness to keep me coming back.  You will never get bored and never stopped feeling challenged, yet will always come away feeling proud of yourself for accomplishing the goals he sets for you.  Dmitri is smart, funny and really cares about helping his students truly excel.  I have met and exceeded strength and fitness goals with Dmitri that I never even dared set for myself before I started working with him.

Furthermore, Dmitri's gym sets a no-frills, no-nonsense, only-the-best, old school tone that discourages dilettantism and encourages you to push past your limits, safely, towards your own personal growth.

I am currently traveling and feel the absence of Dmitri's guidance acutely.  He offers a distance-coaching option that I will explore in order to keep up with his training while I am away.  Prior to meeting Dmitri and his wife, Elena (who is also a four-time world champion athlete and an amazing trainer in her own right, but with whom I am less familiar), I never imagined I would consider doing a distance-coaching program for my personal workouts.  The quality of Dmitri’s coaching changed my mind."

Matthew Porter, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Psychology

California School of Professional Psychology


"The Russian Kettlebell Academy is not 24/7 Fitness; it is a place where true progress is made and results are gained. Dmitri Sataev is not a personal trainer, he's full-fledged coach who'll invest his time and energy to ensure you reach your goals in the safest way possible. His only demand is that you put in the time and effort yourself.
Dmitri is a world class kettlebell champion and the leading kettlebell expert in the country, teaching the original гиревой спорт (Girevoy Sport) developed in the Soviet Union. However his decades of expertise includes powerlifting, bodybuilding, and various other training techniques you've never heard of.
After training under Dmitri for one year my results are significantly beyond what I've seen while training under anyone else. I've come to learn that even more important than my physical improvements was the mental fortitude I've developed from his training. 
Keep in mind nothing here is easy; your mind and body will be challenged and pushed until you've surpassed your limits. Then you'll be pushed again. But you'll eventually come to understand growth doesn't come from "easy" or "medium". "
Eric T Martinez



"I'm 66 and even though I come from a very physically demanding work life, I had let my health and physical condition decline badly after I retired.  Pretty common with retirees.  Would start and stop workout routines at home and at local gyms but could never stick to them because I was no longer "required” to be at a high level of physical conditioning.  On a whim, I went with my grandson to this gym to check it out.  Dimitri (the owner) made it clear to me he knew what he was doing when it comes to physical "rehabilitation" (my term).  I signed up for coaching sessions that day in May.  I immediately realized I need someone to hold me accountable while restoring my health.  From the second session on, I hadn't felt so good literally in years.  I actually look forward to going to this gym because of how great I feel afterwards.  I walk more upright, feel stronger, breathe better, even my eyes seem to be clearer.  Dimitri DEFINITELY does know what he's doing.  He watches you closely and can tell just how much you can really do.  And it's surprising how much you really can do that you didn't think you could.  I strongly recommend this gym and committing to a contract with Dimitri.  It's worth every penny to have your own personal coach with such a vast knowledge of how to restore your health and fitness to you personally no matter what your current fitness level is.  This is just what you need if you really want to make a huge positive change in your life that you can literally feel."

Mick Volpe


 " I began training at the United States Girevoy Sport Federation gym under the tutelage of Dmitri about six months ago.  His instructional methods and ability to coach have helped me progress to levels of performance that I could not have done alone.  When Dmitri takes someone to instruct, he builds them from the ground up and takes pride in doing so.

 His classes are for people who want to learn the actual sport of Girevoy and/or want to improve their conditioning.  A month ago, I became an instructor in the sport and I use the girya during morning pt at my unit to improve the fitness of the sailors I work with.

 I would recommend Dmitri’s classes to anyone, regardless of fitness level or experience..."

Stephen Clogston, Maritime Enforcement Specialist Second Class, United States Coast Guard


"Dmitri has given me the training I need to take my strength and conditioning to the next level. The workouts here are defiantly for those strong of will. You will be pushed to your limits. The atmosphere here reeks of sweat, hard work and determination. My job requires that I be in only the best of shape, and at USGSF, I've found the training. My physique has drastically changed since the short time I've been here. This place is for serious individuals only. Welcome to USGSF. Welcome to Russian Hell. "

Andrew Volpe


"The gym for me at first was just a way for me to get in shape. Now I find myself going there for fun. I was out of shape and could barely even lift the 8kg kettlebells. Now I’m lifting the 20kg kettlebells.     Before I went to the gym I didn’t even know what to do with the kettlebells or what they even where.

Kettlebells weren’t the only thing that I improved in. I noticed that I was lifting more weights than I ever thought I could. I was lifting, squatting, and benching more. I was getting stronger mentally as well as physically.

At football I was always in the back of the pack. Now I am usually in the front. Thanks to Dmitri’s training course I have been in better shape than ever. I can lift more, I have more endurance, and more confidence."

            Bennett Sceusa


"I joined the gym just for my son Bennett. To get Bennett in shape for football. I was just going to do cardio. When Dmitri said that I should probably start weight training I was hesitant at first, I was worried about being so out of shape and the pain of working out. But it turned out that Dmitri and Elena made it gradual but constant improvement. Now I actually look forward to going to the gym.

  When Bennett my son broke his wrist Dmitri kept working with him keeping in mind not to do any more damage to the broken wrist. He was able to stay in shape and now since his wrist has healed Dmitri is working with him to get the week wrist back into shape.

            Dmitri and Elena created a nice family atmosphere in the gym. All the members are friendly and supportive. Thank you both from Dennis Sceusa."

            Dennis Sceusa, May 2013


"My training experience at USGSF thus far (three weeks in) has been outstanding.  The instructors are extremely proficient at their jobs, constantly monitor your progress, and push you like I’ve never seen.  When it comes to Kettlebells (Girevoy) there is no one better.  Dmitri (The Mad Russian) forces you to correct bad habits that you may have picked up from other kettlebell sessions.  Having participated in a now popular “functional fitness” community on and off again for the past several years, I have to say these are the hardest workouts I have ever done.  Dmitri pushes you to the brink of exhaustion, then happily says “do it all again.”  Yet, you finish and feel like you just conquered the world, leaving you with a strong desire to come back for another session. 

In stark contrast to my “functional fitness” experience, Dmitri also has the ability to tailor the workouts.  You are not constrained to doing what is written on a wall just because that is what everyone else is doing that day??  I have seen Dmitri design some brutal workouts that pushed you beyond your limit, while keeping in mind any possible injury or concern you may have (i.e. hurt lower back, sprained ankle, tweaked shoulder…).  Just know that Dmitri has an uncanny ability to sense if you genuinely have an injury or concern, or if you are just complaining about soreness.  I made the mistake of saying my legs “hurt” before a workout and Dmitri said “Good, let’s start with some heavy ball lifts then standing squats, then move onto some real runners, then…,” you get the idea. 

The gym is the most basic, most brutal, and best workout environment I’ve experienced in a long time.  I intend on being a member for a very long time." 

-Levi H, July  2013


"Coach has been a pivotal part of changing my life. I am 46 years old and have kept relatively active throughout my life, but made a decision to take my exercise and well being to the next level. Little did I know that the instruction and expertise that Coach has given me since I've joined his program has been life changing and beneficial to my health in many ways. I'm stronger, more confident, and lead a healthier lifestyle. For this I am truly grateful."

Steve Spellerberg, Account Manager Lawyers Title Company, July 2013


“To all interested in improving their strength and conditioning: Dmitri's approach to training is completely unique. His unorthodox methods, plainly put, deliver results. When I started training with Dmitri he put me through rigorous workout to evaluate my conditioning. He challenged me to pick up a 170 pound medicine ball. It was only because of his tremendous coaching that I was able to lift it. Now I can lift a 200 pound medicine ball 10 times, which is no easy feat for a man that weighs 155 pounds. This not only involves great strength, but also demands incredible conditioning.

As a professional fighter, I have found his training invaluable. When encountering an opponent of equal skill, the more conditioned athlete will always win and that's what gives me the edge over my opponents. I have been training with Dmitri since September of 2006 and we have yet to do the same workout twice. If you are a fighter or just trying to push yourself to the next level, you'll never know how good his training is until you try it.”

Diego Garijo
Professional MMA Fighter


"As I write these few words about my trainer Dmitri Sataev, I have recently ‘turned 60’.  Like so many guys; I trained with weights as a teenager and during my years in the military, but as I got older my training ‘faded’. I was 48 when I began to train with Dmitri and in the next four years I accomplished things I would have never dreamt of. He did more than teach me proper technique, exercises, movements, and workouts that increased my strength, endurance, flexibility, and mental acuity; he taught me to demand more of myself.

Today I am at my high school football playing weight, literally. I can walk into the gym and squat 405 lbs. for reps. I’ve done 225 lbs. one handed dead lifts, and Farmer Walks with 125 lbs. dumbbells. I mention these numbers just to give you an idea of what I have achieved thanks to Dmitri’s training. He did more than teach me to train my body; he showed what was possible if I would just do what he told me to do. I am very glad I did."

Dennis Barlotta


" Since Jan, 2012 I have been doing strength & conditioning with Dmitri & I can honestly say this is the best I have ever felt overall, both in the physical and mental sense. At the start he assesed where my fitness level was and it was quite different from where he helped me get to today.

Variety w/ the workouts never leaves a dull moment, each time a different area of the body is targeted. Sore muscles are proof that he made you work hard and it's a great feeling!

I never leave the Russian Kettlebell Academy without feeling that I didn't give it my all and a ton of sweat in the process!

I have never tested my limits with exercise before and now I have w/ Dmitri, he is both encouraging and entertaining! "

Geraldine W.
San Diego, CA


 "The 6 weeks I spent with Coach Dmitri was by far, the best conditioning, strength and endurance training I have ever experienced. His training philosophies will make you stronger physically and mentally and the results will speak for them self. As a professional athlete, I know that with Coach Dmitri's training, I will have the edge and quitting is not an option, only winning is--except now by how much is up to me."

Joey Gilbert






Online Training Option

Unlimited Training Online

  • Effective online training
  • Customized programs to meet your needs
  • Reasonable cost
  • Learn from the best

Get Started Today - Call Now!

Contact Information

  • San Diego, CA 92117
  • Tel: (619) 764-1882

About the US Girevoy Sport Federation

  • USGSF was founded in 2003 by Dmitri Sataev. The purpose of USGSF is to popularize the traditional Russian Girevoy Sport (G.S., kettlebells) as well as other non-traditional physical exercises and events utilizing the kettlebell as a strength and conditioning tool. Read More