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Ryan Stramrood: Grit

  • Workshop17 17 Dock Road Cape Town, WC, 8002 South Africa (map)

Ryan Stramrood


When Angela Lee Duckworth was 27 years old she took a job teaching 7th-grade math at a New York public school. When marking her pupil’s grades, Duckworth noticed a peculiar thing. Being an astute observer, it struck her that her children’s grades did not directly correlate with their IQ. “Some of my strongest performers did not have stratospheric IQ scores,” said Duckworth, “and some of my smartest kids weren't doing so well.” After leaving her teaching gig, Duckworth became a renowned academic and psychologist, working with government departments and blue-chip companies to discern the markers in performance. In those very different contexts, one characteristic emerged as a significant predictor of success. And it wasn't social intelligence. It wasn't good looks, physical health, and it wasn't IQ. It was grit. In the midst of the 4th Industrial Revolution, Heavy Chef now takes a lens to the single most powerful defining characteristic of success, and we invite an individual who exemplify the very essence of the word - Ryan Stramrood - to teach a seminal Masterclass in November.

Ryan Stramrood is a world-renowned ice swimmer. From being a corporate couch potato in his thirties ten years ago, Ryan has already completed 81 Robben Island-to-mainland crossings, swam solo across the notorious English Channel, swam the first official “Ice Mile” in -1°C water in Antarctica, completed the world’s first swim around the southernmost tip of South America – Cape Horn – and was the first South African male to swim from Europe to Africa across the Gibraltar Strait.

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About This Masterclass

Ryan is going to share his own story. From sitting on his couch, lazing through his thirties, to motivating himself to push past the impossible in his own mind, Ryan had to learn the true meaning of Grit. Thereafter, Ryan is going to challenge delegates into exercises that will reveal how powerful you actually are and providing you with the tools to tackle and defeat the challenges that inevitably beset you in life.

About Ryan


A South African, Small Business Owner, Family Man and An Average Joe. Ryan’s hobby is Ultra Extreme Open Water and Ice swimming, and for deeply personal reasons, he has undertaken some of the world’s most extreme challenges, pushing his limits and human boundaries in our planet’s most inhospitable places. Following painful, pioneering training techniques Ryan challenges himself by pushing personal limits for swimming in ice water, and often sets new benchmarks for human endurance. No wetsuits or protection from the cold water – only a Speedo. Ryan takes his audiences on a journey with me. Through story-telling, Ryan illustrates just how limited and governed we all are, in every aspect of our lives, by believing in our own limitations. Ryan defines exactly how every one of us can push past impossible.

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