Wednesday, November 30, 2011

74 year Old Karate Master

You're never told to train and be in shape. Check out the shape of this young guy.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thank You God For Letting Me Win

Sometimes after a fight you will see the winner jump for joy, look up in the sky and thank God for their victory. Back when we were kids, the coach would have the team gather together in Prayer before the game (of course the other team did the same). Sorry if I offend you, but the Almighty ain't gonna pick you over your opponent. You and your opponent are going to decide who wins. At the end of good fight, go and thank him.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Top MMA Submissions Video

Here a cool video showing the most commonly used submission techniques in the sport and some of the rare submissions you will see.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

My Muay Thai Journey

Working out in boxing gyms over the years, I was able to meet all kinds of martial artist coming in to sharpen up their hands. I was able to meet boxers, kickboxers and Muay Thai Fighters. Muay Thai is known as "The Art of Eight Limbs" and is one of the toughest ring sports. I met Pedro Villalobos at a martial arts gym in Atlanta. He moved to the States from Madrid. We began training together and sharing our knowledge. Back in the late 90s I worked a job where I traveled back and forth to Boston for about 8 months. When I was up there I would work out at gym run by a talented instructor named Jerry (now Boston Muay Thai). He and a fighter named Steve ran the place. He trained in Thailand at the famous Fairtex gym. I was exposed to true Muay Thai. Pedro would later go to Thailand. He stayed for a period of time training and fighting. When he returned we delved deeper into the art and trained like we were in Thailand 6 days a week for 3 years. We started Thailand Arts Institute and trained a group of several fighters for several years. Pedro became the ISKA U.S. Middleweight Muay Thai Champion by defeating Russian fighter, Gregory Flintsanov in Atlanta in 1998. He later fought in the first MMA event in Atlanta (the Submission Challenge later to be called the Gauntlet).  Pedro left the states in 2002 to make Thailand his home. He established a gym and continued his study of Thai Martial Arts and now teaches Muay Sangha. His website is He is an author of two books (one on Muay Thai and another on Krabri Krabrong). He travels internationally giving seminars too. He along with Champion Kelly Leo were my main training partners for years. Pedro helped us to develop our Muay Thai foundation and he was instrumental in helping the art develop in the Southeast.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

80 Year Old Jhoon Rhee

John Rhee is known as the father of American Tae Kwon Do. He has been a successful martial artist by creating a martial arts business that has stood out for decades. Here he is at 80 years old pumping out some push ups and doing splits.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Frank Brennan Shotokan Karate Fighter

Here's example of a superb Karateka. Awesome technique. Check out UK's Frank Brennan.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Give Ronda Rousey A Hand (or Arm)

Olympian Ronda Rousey displayed her world class grappling ability in her fight against Julia Budd. This is an example of being a master at one thing and adding to your toolbox.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Multiple attackers

Here's couple of examples of one against many in a confrontation. The key things you will see will be footwork and and emphasis on hands. Check 'em out.

Kung Master against 3 attackers

Boxer against 4 attackers

Boxers against 2

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Prove It In The Ring

Martial artist speculate about what works and what doesn't. The practice a lot of theory and they are told by their instructors that this and that will work like this. Students don't really know if their instructors have ever done it. If you are learning a technique ask what, when, and how to it. Get out their and experiment in the lab (competition). Outside of real confrontations, competition is the perfect testing ground. You have to deal with emotions, adrenaline, fatigue, pain, etc. Don't be a talker, be the walker.

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Champion's Mindset

In order to be a champion or to accomplish anything in life, you have to decide for yourself that that is what you want and what you will attain. Of course good coaching and training is a plus, but the most important thing is self dedication and self motivation. You will become what you truly desire if you really want it. Look at any successful person and ask them what their burning desire was and I'm sure that it will be whatever it is that they have accomplished. And what you have to take into account is that successful people of have paid their dues. Champions don't always win and bounce back from losses. Most will quit when things get hot in the kitchen. You have to push forward through tough times and remain positive. If it was easy, everybody would be doing it.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Getting Into Fighting Shape

To get ready for competition you have to be in shape before you begin fight training. A lot of athletes are lazy and try to get in shape while training for a fight. You should already of a good base condition to begin with. If you have 6 to 8 weeks to get ready for a match and you start at the beginning of that 6 or 8 week cycle, you are behind. A competitor should be training and learning all the time. When getting ready for a fight, you should run. Running should be outside if possible and you mix distance and sprints. You need to alternate hard, moderate, and mild workouts. Don't kill yourself everyday. You need to spar, do your bag, mitt, shadow boxing, rope, drills, etc. In the gym you need intensity of 60 to 90 minutes. For you guys that say you train 4 plus hours a day, you ain't gettin' in with real intensity. Train the way your are going to fight. Boxers glove and spar with the same intensity they will have in a fight. The only difference is that the gloves are bigger and they wear headgear. When training, simulate the fight environment. As mentioned earlier, allow recovering after the hard sessions. Be sure to train like you compete and push yourself. Many of us need outside motivating from a trainer or coach. That's great, but remember you have to reach down inside of yourself and bring out your best.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Just Do It!

There is so much talk about what is best. This style does this and that style does that. Which has the better hands, the best grappling, the more powerful kicks, etc.? If you don't spar and or compete against as many people as you can, it means nothing. You have to train or compete against fighters who specialize to see how your techniques work in different situations. Do speculate. Get out there and do it. Just like the shopping networks, martial artists get into novelty techniques. The latest, greatest new thing. While there are innovations in everything, it still boils down to hard work. You, experimenting and experience the world of martial arts. Get out there and train!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Shotokan's Aidan Timble

Shihan Aidan Timble is a key figure in Shotokan Karate. A successful competitor and instructor in the UK. Check him out.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Shidokan "Triathlon of Martial Arts"

I came across a cool slide show of Shidokan Karate at the Honbu (U.S. headquarters) in Chicago. The clips feature some key people in Shidokan. Black belts who have been part of the organization for many years. Individuals who have fought in and helped put on tournaments. They teach classes and give back to the art. Check out my Shidokan family. OSU.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Pad Work

I watch a lot of coaches feed targets to students and fighters, giving them preset combinations to execute or drills. All of the above is great. But, how do you prepare for a fight? I see experienced professionals having combinations called out and set combinations being the norm in pad work. Some of the pad work has to be "alive". What I mean by that is that you have to be throw your own combinations and work without patterns. Opponents are predictable in that everybody gives something away. If you watch them for a while you will pick up on patterns and certain things that telegraph what's coming. I study body language  and the rhythm of technique delivery. When I hit pads, I get with a regular training partner who is used to holding the pads for free style pad work. If I do something really weird, I give him a heads up as a I do it. I don't want to create habits that can be picked up on by an opponent. Like Bruce Lee said, "You must be formless".

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Mike Tyson Knockout Highlight

No matter what martial art you study, we all appreciate a good knock out. One of the best KO artists in boxing was Iron Mike. Appreciate this.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The "Detroit Destroyer" Takes On 3!

This past weekend, Shidokan Atlanta's own, Eric "The Detroit Destroyer" Heegaard, came up against 3 opponents. This was for real folks. After leaving the Jay Z concert, Eric had to catch a cab due to missing the last MARTA train. While waiting 3 guys decided to rob what they thought would be an intoxicated, unclear victim. For those of us who have had a drink or two with Eric, he can drink most under the table. Well, even though he was drunk, he fought all three. The grabbed him, kicked him, and punched at him, and even though he was tipsy, he laid into them using punches, elbows and knees and throws. He chased the one with the wallet 6 or 7 blocks, letting the guy think he'd gotten away (he may have been intoxicated, but he does workout). He surprises the wallet snatcher with a knee to the head as he leans over catching his breath from running, takes the guy down and locks him into a triangle choke and punches him and chokes him until the guy gives him his money. Feeling sorry for the guy, Eric throws him $20 bucks and goes on his way.