Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Why Contact Is Necessary

There are many theories on how Karate should be taught. When most start training in Karate, there is little contact and not a lot of impact training (hitting pads, bags, etc.). Students don't experience hitting and getting hit. The do a lot of light to no contact sparring and drills. This is OK, but they have to experience some contact (hitting and getting hit with some force) to be able to really understanding combat. Not everyone will have to get in the ring and fight, but as instructors we have do and then we have to use those experiences to give our students (especially those who will will never get the chance to compete) the proper perspective on fighting.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Age Is Not An Excuse

You are never to old to get out there and do something. Here are some 80 year olds doing their thing. So do yours. 80 year old hitting the bag 80 year old competing in amateur boxing

Monday, December 29, 2014

Consistent Training Is Key

Why do you have trouble performing techniques in competition that you've practiced? Performing under the lights is different than at practice. In practice things work well because there is no pressure. Nobody is reacting and defending your attacks like their life depended on it. When you add pressure to something, if you aren't used to handling performance anxiety, you will fold. If one can do 25% of what is done in practice, he or she is in decent shape. If one can do 50%, then he or she will do very well. Do more than 50%, then you have a top performer or competitor. Only through consistent training can you hope to attain that above 25%. Waiting until the last minute to do anything won't cut it. You have to practice religiously to get any kind of result.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Will Floyd fight Manny?

I don't think Floyd will take on Paqquaio. Fighters fight for the sake of fighting. A true champion will fight the best opposition. In order to say that you are the best, you must beat the top fighters. I would like for there to be a tournament that puts the top guys in and they fight till one man stands. Do this once a year and then we can say that one guy is the best. I like this clip providing a good reason the two biggest names in boxing probably won't fight.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Should Martial Arts Instructors Have Fight Experience?

Should Instructors have some experience in what they are teaching? Yes. If you go to a driving instructor you expect them to know how to drive. If you taking cooking lessons, you want to learn from a chef who has cooked. Unfortunately in martial arts, that is not always the case. Karate and Taekwondo students can get a black belt and go open a school. And unfortunately many of them can't punch their way through a wet paper bag. Now I'm not say you have to be a bad ass fighter. But, I would not come and learn from you if you've never done it. If all you've done is theory you're not going to know much more than the customer. So, no matter what you teach, make sure you have some experience in it.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Is Winning Most Important?

Is winning the most important thing to you? For some people it is. Is winning at all costs important? Is it how you play that's most important. I think that doing all that you can to prepare and giving an event your full effort is most important. Winning feels good but not if you didn't do your best. And many times you can find accept a loss with your head up if you know that you did you you could possibly do. Always remember than when one wins, the other has to lose.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Skip Some Rope

Jumping rope is something I do almost everyday. After injuries to both knees, I skip instead of run (occassionally I will run some hills or find a grassy area to jog). I will skip in rounds or keep moving for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. I mix it in, double unders, squat jumps, high knees, etc. and move around the gym (adding some footwork in). Here's a great clip of JT Van getting down with the rope showing how boxers use them.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Anthony Pettis On Taekwondo

When a lot of fightes think of Taekwondo they think of techniques that they feel are impractical and useless. They criticize this popular sport, but they have to realize that it is one of the most popular and practiced martial arts for a reason. Having been a competitor in Olympic Style TKD for years, I got lots of practice punching and kicking aganist and have been able to adapt those experiences into to other combat sports. There are a lot of fighters in professional Kickboxing and MMA that have backgrounds in TKD. Here's a clip of UFC Lightweight Champ, Anthony Pettis, talking about the influence of Taekwondo in his career as a mixed martial artist and his life.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Tang Soo Do

The first martial art I ever studied was Tang Soo Do. From there I trained in several other disciplines. To this day I can still see the influence of this art in my techniques. I came across this video featuring some excellent Tang Soo Do stylist displaying incredible technique.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Kill The Body And The Head Will Follow

In boxing, it is important to work the opponent's body. Hitting the body wears your opponent down and opens him up for head shots. Here's a clip of Iron Mike Tyson working his uppercut off of the body shot.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Best Way To Train

What is the best way to train for your specific event? Should you do more weights, cardio, plyomtetics, etc.? All that's is cool, but the best way to prepare for your event is to do your event. If I was getting ready for a 10 round fight (3min rounds), I would spend lots of time sparring 3 minute rounds. Sure, I would do all the exercising, cardio and conditioning, but the main training regimen would be focused on doing 10 rounds. Some guys will say do 4 min rounds because it will help your cardio better. No, not really. It is still exercise but you will pace yourself for 4 minutes instead of 3. You will need to build your conditioning around doing exactly what you are training for.

Friday, November 21, 2014


When I took Taekwondo, whenever we bowed we would say, "Patience". Patience is required in all aspects of life. On the road to success, we often become impatient. We hit a road block and often give up because it's not easy. As the old saying goes, "If it was easy, everybody would be doing it". So, regardless of the challenges you encounter on your journey to achieve your personal goals, persevere and never give up.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

No Excuses

People tend to find time for the things they want to do and put off those things that don't want to do. It is just that simple. Many will way they don't have time to train. Sure, you may not have the optimal time available to you, but you can create the time. Travel, bad weather, no car, etc. are not excuses. I spent years riding the bus to practice (90 min one way). I've driven 90 min one way to train at different places. I've trained at 6am before work, trained at lunch time and have trained at night after work. On vacation I train first thing in the morning, while everyone else is asleep. The only thing that will prevent me from training is being sick. So, remember that you can always find time to train. Anything that you really want to do, you can do.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Why Bare Knuckle Karate?

There are many combat sports out their for people to participate in. In looking at traditional martial arts, there are many avenues of competitition (point fighting, tae kwon do, bjj, judo, etc.). These type of tournaments tend to have a good number of participants. But in looking at a brutal type of fighting like Knockdown/Bare Knuckle Karate. Knockdown fights fought with no hand techniques to the head, but kicks to upper and lower torso. A match is 3 minutes. In case of a draw there is a 2 minute followed by another 1 minute overtime (in case of another tie). Because you can't punch the face, you will fight at a closer range. You will give and take blows and you will have to be explosive the entire time. If you win, you will have about 10-15 minutes to examine your injuries (sore knuckles, bruised shins, sore ribs, and sore facial areas from the accidental face punches). You will have to defeat several opponents to win your division. Sounds easy? Give it a try.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

How Martial Arts Help One Overcome Obstacles

The most important thing I think that we learn from martial arts is the ability to overcome obstacles. When training, you sometimes get tired or hurt. These can cause doubt and many think about stopping the things that make them uncomfortable. But pushing yourself behind what you think are limitations are the key to teaching that you can always do a little more. By challengining myself through competition, I learned to deal with not only the pain and fatigue, but to handle pressure, pain and discomfort. Through training you better learn what you are made of. You learn weather you will fold under pressure or drive on. Embrace the lessons that you get from your experience in the martial arts.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Cage Muay Thai

Here's a cool clip of Thai Boxing legend John Wayne Parr's promotion, "Caged Muay Thai". Fighters fight full muay thai with 4oz fingerless gloves in a cage. It's intense and exciting and the fans love the action. Here's JWP himself showing how it's done.

Monday, November 10, 2014

If You Call Yourself The Best, Compete Against The Best

This past weekend, boxing legend Bernard Hopkins fought the "Crusher" Sergey Kovalov at age 49. Even though he lost, he showed what a champion is supposed to do, and that is challenge himself against the best competition. Unlike a lot of the other champions out their, who avoid top opposition he has fought top guys most of his career. To be the best you have to fight the best. We here the argument of money being made as the reason we don't see top match ups. But that's B.S. Guys like Mayweather fight for crazy money. He was the highest paid athlete in 2013. With the type of money he makes he could have retired already. With that being said it is not about the money. A champion is supposed to fight whoever the top guys in his division is. Better yet they should put the top 8 guys in a tournament (like they did a couple of years back with the Supermiddleweights where Andre Ward won) and let them fight to a finalist. That way we know who's the best on a given day.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Dealing With Injuries

Injuries are common in martial arts or any physical activity. How do you handle your injuries? I have torn ligaments, popped bones out of place, stiches, deep bruises, etc. Some will say do nothing and rest until your all the healed. I just work around the injury and find what I can and can't do. Out side of being sick, you can always train and work on something.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Sacrifice For Your Success

What are you will to do to be a champion? What are you willing to do to be a successful at anything? You have to sacrifice. To make an A on the test, you have to study. To be a champion you have have give up fun time. You have to dedicate yourself to training. When asked to hang out late, you have to say no so you can rest. When asked if you want a drink, you have to say no because you need to keep your system clean. You have to me discipline and avoid things that take away from your focus. What are you will to do be a champion?

Monday, October 27, 2014

Tell The Coach What You Want To Do

As coach, it's funn how a fighter will tell you what they want to do. They want to hit the pads and skip out on the shadow boxing, bag work and conditioning exercises. They tell you that they will do them later, on their own. Some people are self motivated and you can trust that they will do all those things on their own. But that isn't the case most of the time. Not trying to sound like an old guy (as I can at times), but looking at fight gyms and martial arts in general, a lot of theme don't operate like they should. When I started out training in a boxing gym, the training showed you how to stand, showed you how to move (I think all I did was step slide my first 2 weeks), show you the basic punches, and tell you to some rounds of this and some of that. You did what he said and tell he showed you something else. I respected his experience and knowledge (as I saw a stable of quality fighters). After my workouts, I would watch the pros and noticed that nobody had to tell them what to do. They would warm up and get to it. During sparring, a coach would advise fighters on things to work on and they would have them do some drills to reinforce those things. But for the most part, everybody busted their butt without anybody having to yell at them do work hard. Now a days, guys what to learn the shoulder roll (Floyd Mayweather) and hit the pads (I didn't do pads a lot because I spent my time in the ring with bodies), and they have to be told to do exercises. Commecialism of combat sports and martial arts is good and bad. It's good that men and women can be exposed to the arts. Kickboxing and boxing became classes where you can say you kickbox and box (without ever sparring). So, if you have never trained in a fight gym, make sure to do so.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Where's The Calvary?

Whenever competitions come up I try to get my students to compete. Competition allows you to test yourself and elevate your skills. The funny thing is that a week or 2 before these events, the number of competitors going dwindles. They have to go out of town, or they have to work (whereas they didn't work weekends before), and a host of other reasons. Now, I am talking about the guys who come and beat each other up in the gym and say that they want the fighter life but they really don't (and that's OK, just don't say you do if you really don't). On several occassions (actually about 15) I have hosted events over the years (fight shows, tournaments, etc.) and I've had great difficulty getting my own fighters to fight on them. I once had a guy commit to and event and leave a note on the door with a written excuse that he couldn't make it (one day before). Most who get in combat sports have the desire to get out there and compete, so, if you can, do it. You only live once.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Strength Or Cardio

What is most important for fighting? Strength or Cardio? Both are important, but cardio is most important. If you run out of gas, it won't matter what how strong or even how good your technique is. You defense will suffer and you will get with things that you would normally block or get out of the way of. So, when training you have design your workouts to address all areas (flexibility, endurance, strength, etc.). But, remember you have to have a baseline cardio level to make everything else useful. Remember the old saying, "Fatigue makes cowards of us all."

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Developing Your Cardio

What's the best way to develop your cardio for a specific activity? The answer is doing that activity. I'm not say that running, biking, swimming, eliptical, etc. is not good. You have to do those things to supplement your primary activity. If a fighter is getting ready for a fight, the main form of training is sparring. Of course, he or she has to shadow box, hit the bag, pads, etc. But, the primary training method is specific to the actual activity.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Saenchai Muay Thai

One of the most exciting fighters to watch in Muay Thai is Saenchai. He puts on a show when he competes and does things no one else does. I done posts of him in the past. It was time for another. Check out his highlight and training clips. Pads Clinch

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Flare Over Substance

In todays martial arts world, students are drawn to fancy techniques over the basics. In many sports, young athletes emulate theirs sports idols. The try to box like Ali, they try to play basketball like Jordan, etc. But they don't have their basics down. In martial arts, we want to do the flying armbars, the 360 degree round kick, etc. All those are cool moves, but you have to be able to apply the basics because you can always count on them over the flashy stuff. At seminars, I have seen instructors give novelty techniques to attendees. If they would go and see those instructors fight clips, they will see that many of them never do what they teach. The use the basics and when they're done the become like theorists and entertain their audience because they know people get bored. So, master your basics first before you show off.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

How Boxing Improved My Martial Arts Overall

In looking at my years of training in martial arts, I would say that boxing has had the biggest impact. Spending 17 years actively training in boxing gyms, I have seen some of the best train and have learned skills that have carried over into all of my other martial arts experiences. The training of a boxer is intense and the reaction, timing, mental and physical toughness, are some of the things that carry over. In combat sports, I have always said that the fighter with better hands will win (all else being somewhat equal). In fighting the hands are used more than any other weapon. So, if you want to get better at punching, train in the sweet science. a couple of rounds from one my boxing fights

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Applied Judo (Karo Parysian)

I came across this really cool highlight video of Karo Parysian. Karo is know for his effective use of Judo in MMA. He has an agressive approach to MMA that is evident in his earlier years of judo that you will see in this clip.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

You Are The Most Important Teacher

In martial arts, fitness and life we have teachers, coaches, parents, friends, etc. helping us to learn. The share with us their experiences and give us ideas of so that we don't have to have the same pitfalls as they did. In learning martial arts, students will take their instructors words like the gospel. Let me tell you something. In order to learn you will have to discover through self exploration. Through trial and error you will learn what and what not to do (this is the case in most things). In fighting, nobody really teaches you to fight. You do.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

How Hard Shoud You Spar?

When training should you spar light, hard, or somewhere in the middle? It will depend on your goals. If you are getting ready for a match, you have to have some sessions that include hard contact. If you are a beginner, you will start out light. If you are maintaining (not competing) somewhere in the middle is good. When sparring keep your ego out of it and see it as a tool (just like bag work and jump rope). There are no winners in practice and many times people get bent out of shape because the they get hit. Always make your sparring sessions productive by working on specific things. If you spar a round and don't know what you did right and wrong then you got nothing out of it.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Perfect Your Overall Skills Through Single Disciplines

Cross training has always been popular for martial artists. Mixed Martial Arts is about taking the best for you and building your game. For example if you are a kicker, you will need to work on your punching. If your specialty is grappling, you might work on your boxing. The best way to improve your weaknesses is to immerse your self in them. To learn to box, go to a boxing gym. Train for several months and try some amateur fights. The goes for kickboxing or thai boxing. Don't just hit pads and spar, especially with guys that don't do what you are trying to learn. Guys will work on their boxing but they aren't working out with boxers. Train with those who specialize in what you are trying to learn.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

101 Judo Ippons 2013

Here's an awesome judo highlight from 101 Ippon Series. Check this out.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

My Thoughts On Mayweather Vs. Maidana Fight

I wasn't to thrilled with the Mayweather Vs Maidana fight. There was way too much hugging, holding, and play acting by Floyd. The bitten hand that went numb is ridiculous. Both fighters fouled each other but Floyd was able to influence the ref into focusing on his opponent and not him. It is difficult to have a clean fight with a guy like Maidana. He is a rough and tough brawler. He was over agressive and abandoned his jab and he did throw some straighter punches that landed. Floyd used his speed and hit and held him to get the decision. It had it's moments but I didn't see this fight as a great one.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Muay Thai Old School

Here's a Thai fight using rope tied around the fist instead of gloves. Imagine getting punched in the face with this.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Why Do You Fight?

People compete for many different reasons. Some have to release their anger in a positive way. Some are insecure and fighting makes them feel better about themselves. Some just like the challenge. For me it was always about testing myself against the best possible opponents. I feel that by doing so, you raise your level.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Paul Murphy Boxing Classic

On Saturday I stopped by to watch some amateur boxing at the Annual Paul Murphy Boxing Classic. It was an incredible show, with 3 rings running with boxers as young as 8 years and up. In thinking about all the martial arts events I go to, the quality of skill is always better at the boxing matches. The teenagers boxing look like professionals. Later Saturday, I was watching some UFC fights on PPV and the kids I saw fight earlier that day had superior punch technique.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Champions Are Made And Not Born

How many times have you heard the old saying that champs are made and not born (or vice versa). Let me tell you this, champions are made. But, who makes them? They do. You can have the best training facility, training equipment, and the best coaches. Or you can have all of these things to a lesser degree. None of these will matter if you don't decide in your heart and mind to do what is necessary to be the best that you can be. You decide if you are going to be good or not. I can't tell you how many times I've seen the best physical talent give up mentally, even though they are on top of the world when the feel they can bully an opponent. As soon as the other guy gives them a challenge, they lose their confidence. I've seen athletes with little resources rise to become the best at what they do through hard work and self confidence. So, keep in mind that in order to succeed you have to belief it and listen to the main person who determines your success. You!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Martial Artists Don't Like To Fight

I started out as a kid training in traditional martial arts. In my late teens I got into combat sports. Having spent many years in boxing and kickboxing gyms, I learned that most martial artist don't like to fight like other combat sports. The average martial arts student goes to class 3x per week (some are the exception). They usually don't do as much physical conditioning as other combat athletes, nor do they spar as much. Lastly, they don't compete as much. A boxer will start competing at 8 years old and by the time he's a teenager, can have 200 to 300 bouts. If he's good, he will have competed against some of the best his his region or in the country. A black belt can be a student who just comes to class and has no competitive experience. Yet, he or she is supposed to be able to defend themselves. Martial arts like Tae Kwon Do and judo will have big tournaments (i.e. Nationals etc.). Because they have USA TKD and USA Judo in addition to being Olympic Sports, they have a larger number of competitors compared to Karate (which is spread out over too many groups). So, next time somebody tells you they are a 4 degreee in a style, take it with a grain of salt.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

What Combat Sport Is Right For You?

As an instructor who coaches athletes in several disciplines, I can see what styles better suit which students. Some have strong upperbodies and thick necks and don't mind getting punched in the head. Some have long legs, lots of flexibility and prefer to stay outside and kick. Some automatically want to grab when attacked. Even though one cross trains, there will be certain things that they gravitate towards. Learn all you can about things you may not be good at, but perfect your best attributes. I was a very soccer player growing up, but got cut from basketball at age 8. No matter how hard I tried, I never made it on a team. But, I was MVP in soccer all the time.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thank You Shidokan Karate

As I think back on my time with Shidokan World Karate Association and U.S. Shidokan, I am grateful and thankful for many wonderful experiences I've been able to have. I have been able to travel throught the U.S. and abroad as a fighter and coach (Repulic of Georgia, Switzerland, Germany, Japan, Costa Rica, and France). U.S. Shidokan Hombu, Chicago is my 2nd home. I've met incredible martial artists and I've seen some great fights. I have been able to train with Shidokan founder, Yoshiji Soeno in the home of Karate, Japan. I have promoted Shidokan events and have developed great friendships. Thanks Shidokan.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Champ Sparring

Some will say he's pound for pound the best and some will say he's not. But we can all agree he is a great boxer. Here's an old clip of Floyd Mayweather sparring in preparation for his fight with Miguel Cotto (which was a great fight by the way).

Monday, August 18, 2014

Tournaments To Determine Champions

What I like about tournaments is that you have several top notch fighters fighting and at the end of the day, the best fighter wins. The following year, another tournament is held and the defending champion has to go through the process again. This would give us a better appreciation of a champion as opposed to the champions who pick and chose there opponents and decide when they are going to fight again. Take the top guys in the weight class, have them draw straws and fight it out to determine the champ.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Discipline In Training

To be the best you can be, you have to be disciplined in your training. You have to practice, exercise and perfect your craft. In order to be champion, you have to believe in yourself but be honest with yourself. When training, there is no B.S. conversations with your buddies. You put your heart and soul in everything you do. Everything that you do must have a purpose in helping you to better yourself. Be consistent in training and train everyday. It isn't easy. If it was, everybody would be a champion. Get to work.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Judoka Neil Adams

Here's a highlight of World Champion and 2x Olympic Silver Medalist Neil Adams. He was dangerous on his feet and on the ground. World Class Judo at it's best.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Sparring Is A Training Tool

Sometimes people think that because they spar well, they will fight well. Well, that is not accurate. Sparring is like any other conditioning tool. There's rope, bag, pad work, etc. Fighters will get caught into thinking that sparring is most important. Sparring is a testing, training lab. It is not the fight. In a fight the intensity is multiplied. The late great boxing trainer, Angelo Dundee, said that Muhammad Ali never won a round sparring in the gym. Ali would create an environment where his sparring partners would put in the worst of situtations and he would have to make adjustments. He used it as a tool. Nothing compares to a real match like a real match. Of course, if you are not able to compete, sparring might be the closest you can get. If that's the case, spar with a pro sometimes instead of someone at equal or less skill level. That way they can create the environment that will give you a realistic approach of how a real match feels. So, don't think because you kick butt in the gym, you can automatically do it for real. Just like the guy who never misses the ball in practice, dropping in in the game, under the lights and with pressure, it's a different ball game.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Yodsanklai Fairtex Fight

Here is some old school Muay Thai, Khmer Boxing. No gloves here, just some rope around the fists. Check this out.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Get Your Copy Of, "How To Be A Champion"

Have you gotten your book, "How To Be A Champion" by Richard Trammell yet? I will share some of my experiences, techniques and training methods that allowed me to attain my goals. Go to this Amazon site and get the ebook for $8.99:

Combat Sports Applicable To Self Defense

I laugh when traditional martial artists and self defense focused guys say that I'm combat sport oriented and they are reality oriented. How can they be more reality oriented especially when they have no combat experience. They haven't spent years in boxing and kickboxing gyms getting hammered by champion fighters, guys who practiced seperating men from conciousness under the guise of sport. They have not been thrown and submitted my world class grapplers. They have not competed in tournaments where fighters fight multiple fights in a day through pain, fatigue, and injury. They have not faced logged in miles of road work, countless rounds of sparring, and conditioning to prepare for fights. The have not faced trained athletes from different arts. And the list goes on. I ask them to try any of these things and then let me know if they think these things will help them in the make believe fights for their lives.

Friday, July 25, 2014

The Birth Of Global Kickboxing

Here's a cool documentary with Benny Urquidez and his beginnings in Japan. He would go on to become a superstar in the sport of kickboxing.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS)

In fighting as in most things, simplicity is the best strategy. Sometimes people get caught up in fancy intricate moves, instead of basics. The fancy stuff is cool, but if you study fights, you will see that it's the basics the get the job done. So, use the KISS method and you will find more success.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Understanding Is In The Doing

When learning something new, we sometimes over analyze what we're learning. If you look at how children learn, it's pretty much visual. The see it and copy it. In martial arts, I try to tell people that they must perform a movement over and over and let go of the mind. Conceptually we understand, but our bodies don't and sometimes it's the other way around. Remember the old saying, "1000 times a beginner, 10,000 times a master".

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

No Such Thing As A Wrong Technique

If you swing a punch, is it ineffective? Actually no. It might not be the most efficient way of delivering a blow, but it can hurt. Many times martial artists get caught up some much in technical delivery that they forget that almost any blow can be effective. If you can put bodyweight behind it, it can hurt. Using boxing as an example, punches come in straight or curved. If you spar or fight, you will learn that almost any punch can hurt. So, keep in mind that fighting is not rocket science. Keep it simple.

Monday, July 14, 2014

My Style Better Than Yours?

So many times martial artists look at other styles and make negative comments? They judge what is effective based on their biased opinions of their style. This is pointless. All styles are valid to those who practice them. If it served no purpose it would not be here and no one would be doing it. Just because you do what you do, doesn't mean that it is superior. To each their own

Friday, July 11, 2014

It's What You Do, Not What They Do

In competition and in life, what's most important is what you do, no your opponent. Many times we are told by trainers and instructors don't do this or that. But, what works and doesn't work for you comes through self-exploration. You can do simulations, drill, etc., and that's fine. But, what you must know how to improvise and adapt. Patterns are predictable, so, you have to be able to change up and expect changes from opponents.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Rafael Agayev Promo

Rafael Agayev is one of the best in Sport Karate. Incredible skills in punching, kicking and throwing. He also puts on a show to entertatin spectators. A multi-European and World Champion, expect to see more of this guy in the future.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The Left Hook With Bernard Hopkins

The Hook is one of the most powerful punches in fighting. Here's a video of Boxing Legend Bernard Hopkins showing several ways to execute the left hook.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Rousey Dominates Again

It should not be a suprise that Ronda Rousey Dominated her opponent this past weekend in UFC 175. For that matter, it shouldn't be a suprise that she has and will continue to do so. Looking at her opponent, Alexis Davis in an interview, she said that she started training at age 15. By age 15, Rousey was competing against world class athletes in international Judo. Outside of the U.S., judo is a BIG sport. Rhonda has medaled in the Olympics, World Championships, and Pan American Games. She did this all by the age of 19. So, this gives you a different kind of athlete. Most of the ladies in MMA, start out as hobbyists (many have boyfriends into it). Highlight of her in the Olympics: Check out Rhonda KO victory:

Monday, July 7, 2014

Weapons Training In The Martial Arts

When you look at weapons training in the martial arts, there are 2 kinds. There is the traditional weapons (kobudo) and then theirs the modern weapons training (knife, gun, etc.). In looking at the traditional weapons (nunchaku, sai, staff, etc.) most of what you see is a lot of twirling and fancy moves that won't work. In the modern weapon self defense techniques, you see similated attack/reponse moves that are hard to pull off (i.e. like catching the hand of a crazed slasher). Just like in empty hand training, there has to be an unrehersed element to the the training (sparring). For sword training, some fence. For knife training, some use chalk, paint, shocks, etc. Some use foam for stick fighting and others pad up a little and go at full contact with sticks. Whatever training you do, add some practical work to it. Dog Brothers Full Contact Stick Fighting

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Muay Thai KO Highlights

Here's a great clip of knockouts from Muay Thai. See devasting punches, kicks, knees and elbows used to cause some serious damage.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A Day In Lumpinee With Saenchai

Here's a cool clip of Muay Thai featuring Saenchai. See what he goes through to make weight and see his prep right before a fight.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Experience Is The Best Teacher

How do you do if what you learn really works? How do you know that what is done in practice is effective? Well, the only way for you to know is to go and do it. Theory is good for learning principles, but to apply them you have to do it. Whether a job or a sport, you learn theory and then you do the practical. In fighting you learn your basics, then you do drills. Next comes sparring. You feel good about all that, but you won't really know if it works until you use it in an all out match. You have to get that real life experience to know that it works.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

DC Highlight

This is a great highlight video of Daniel Cormier. I think he he will be UFC Light Heavyweight Champion soon Check him out.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Always A Student And Never A Master

When will you master something? Never. Sure you will get the basics down and understand what you are doing. You will have mixed theory with practical experience. But, it is still not perfect. I have had the opportunity to see the best of the best train in multiple disciplines (World Champions, Olympians, contenders, etc.). The thing they had in common was that they worked the basics. No special, secret training method. Just good old hard work. The hard work you always learn something new. Through working with students and training partners you will learn something new. Trying other martial arts you will learn something new and gain another perspective of what you already know. When you stop training and start talking more that walking, you get the master/expert syndrome. Always be the student.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Will Weight Training Help Your Fighting?

Weight training is used by most athletes. There are many methods of training and various goals. From toning the body to adding weight, there are countless schools of thought. Will weight training help your fighting? Not really. Weight training will help you develop a strong body armour for absorbing punishment. It will help in areas of imbalance (i.e. strong quads and weak hamstring). It will help in providing a baseline fitness regiment. Will help you knock someone out? Not really. The ability to knock someone out comes from good technique, timing, and placement. Some guys can do it off of raw power (like George Foreman). But, those guys are naturally strong and would be weather they touched a weight or not. Look at 4x World Heavyweight Champ, Evander Hollyfield. He was a Cruiserweight Champ, who bulked up and became a heavyweight. He was successful as a heavyweight, but he was more devasting at a lighter weight and his ability to finish (by KO) was greater. As a heavyweight, he had to rely more on skills and heart. The knockouts were not going to come as easily. So, if you are a welterweight and gain muscle to fight as a middleweight, you are not going to be as efficient as a natural middleweight. Keep hitting the iron, but make sure you keep hitting that bag (it's more important in the fight game).

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Prove It Works

I get asked a lot about what I think about this style or that style. Students of martial arts love to tell you what they think works or have been told that works. They haven't had the opportunity to test it themselves or they've learned from instructors who were told but didn't get the opportunity to test it either. If you are that student, find an instructor who knows first hand if you haven't experience it yourself. That way, everytime a new system pops up, you won't have to waste your time and money to go learn it.

Friday, June 13, 2014

The Clinch Is Inevitable

One thing that is going to happen in any style of fighting is the clinch. Whether it be Karate, TKD, Boxing, Kickboxing, etc., after an exchange, fighters will clinch. Grappling arts like Judo, Wrestling, BJJ, etc. work off clinching. But, as I stated earlier, the striking arts will utitlize clinching. Either to protect yourself or neutralize your opponent's attack, these styles have a modified clinch tactic for that sport. If a knockout blow isn't delivered, clinching will happen. So, this means that all martial artists need to learn to use this skill and defend against it.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Don't Talk About It. Do It.

In the fight game and in sports in general, there are those who talk a lot but never back it up. I am talking about the want to be champion. The individuals who say that want to be a champion but are afraid to get out there and go for it. They talk about what they can do and never do it. They are champions at home, but won't come out of the house to test themselves. They are those who are afraid to lose. They want to name drop and tell you every instructor/coach they've trained with. None of that matters. Get out there and test yourself.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Kudo Daido Juku MMA

Here's a really cool video of Kudo martial art. This is a mixed martial art style that is an offshoot of Kyokushin. Check out the kids in this clip.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Kerry Roop Vs. Russ Wilson

Here's an old school American Kickboxing bout with Kerry Roop fighting Russ Wilson. This is when the sport was known as Full Contact Karate back when there was the PKA (Professional Karate Association) ESPN Kick of the 80s.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Heart Is Important In Winning

Skill and technique is important in winning. But, sometimes heart will get the victory. I've seen fighters who appeared to be outgunned in technique win with heart and desire. Heart is the will to win and never give up. This can be cultivated only through hard training and pushing yourself beyond your perceived limitations. Remember you can always go a little further than you think you can. Once you realize that, you will be able to push forward when your opponent has had enough.

Friday, June 6, 2014

2013 101 Ippons Promo

Here's an awesome clip of world class Judo on the 2013 101 Ippons DVD. Check out this clip and listen to impact of bodies crashing onto the mats.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Shidokan France May 31, 2014 Gala

I had the opportunity to coach U.S. fighters this past weekend in Nice, France. Shidokan France hosted their 4th Annual Shidokan Gala. The night featured international fights in Shidokan Karate (full contact with Grappling), MMA, and Thai Kickboxing. Here are a couple of the fights below. Will get more to you later. //

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Hideyuki Ashihara Karate

Here's a clip of the legendary Karate Master Hideyuki Ashihara. He developed the Sabaki (circle) method of Karate. He was a member of Kyokushin and started his own system. Based on practical fighting, Kata and Sabaki his style spread throughout the world. He is the instructor of Enshin Karate Master Joko Ninomiya (promoter of the Sabaki Challenge).

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Shidokan Bare Knuckle Fight

Here's a good fight featuring Shidokan fighters competing in an international event. Bare Knuckle Karate (hand techniques to the face no permitted) with throws and submissions allowed. Even though the grappling is brief, it shows how quickly one must act and these guys move fast. Enjoy the match.

Monday, May 26, 2014

RIP Mark Selbee

I just heard recently that World Kickboxing Champ, Mark Selbee passed away in a tragic drowning accident. Mark will be remembered as an ambassador of the sport. Both a gentleman inside and outside of the ring, he was always pleasant and kind to everyone. He fought hard and always put on a good show. Our prayers go out to your family.

Friday, May 23, 2014

WKF Karate Kata

Here's a clip displaying Kata (form) of some of the top Kata competitors in World. Their technique is awesome. Watch this performance.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Michael Venom Page

I saw Michael Venom Page's fight last weekend on Bellator. For some people, he may showboat a bit, but regardless of what they may think, he is talented. He does things that very few would attempt. He puts on a show. Check this out.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Sabaki Challenge Highlight

Here's a highlight video of the 2010 Sabaki Challenge. This tournanemtn is one of the longest running full contact karate tournaments in the U.S. It has it's own unique rule set that combines striking and take downs. Check it out.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Shidokan Photo Highlights

A while back I shared some Shidokan photos from World Opens 2003 to 2005. These were taken by professional photographer, Steve Mateo in Chicago. Had to share these again, because they are great photos and they are put together with appropriate music. Enjoy.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Be Calm Under Pressure

When pushed, pressed, and attacked, one tends to tighten up, breath heavy and get emotional. In fighting you must be able to relax and stay calm. You must be able to see what is going on around you. To be able to breath slowly when your heart is racing is difficult to do. To not fight with emotion when anger is exhibited towards you is difficult. But, you must learn to be calms under pressure.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Learn Muay Thai's Clinch

The clinch is almost inevitable in combat. Grabbing is a natural instinct when one is in danger, especially when being hit. If you don't understand the clinch, you will use up a lot of energy and you will be drained. Muay Thai is a great art to study for the the standing grapple, as it utilizes the clinch to knee, elbow and off balance opponents. Watch 2 experts train in the video below.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Judo Newaza Compilation

Wanted to share this cool video of submissions in Judo. Because of limited time in newaza (groundwork), athletes have to be quick and efficient in their attempts to submit an opponent. Check this out.

Monday, May 12, 2014

The Don't Make 'Em Like They Use To

Injuries and pain are part of training. You are going to have them. Should you still train when you have them? Yes. You should work around them. If you are is injured, you still have the other one. If you leg hurts, work your upperbody. There is always something you can work on. In today's time, guys use hurt fingers and toes as an excuse to no train. So, ignore the pain and work around your injuries. There is no excuse to not train.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Tae Kwon Do Highlight

Tae Kwon Do is known for it's kicking skills. A lot of people will watch Olympic style TKD and criticize and laugh. But let me tell you this, it is hard as hell to kick spar for 3 rounds focusing on kicking. If you ever get the chance go and try it with a National level player and you will be in for a rude awakening. The cardio alone will kill you and the ability for a skilled practioneer to move in and out and kick you will suprise you.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Fancy Kicks Can Be Effective

In martial arts, people are always saying keep it simple and basic. Using the sport of kickboxing as an example, the main techniques for the hands are boxing. The spinning backfist is seen as a technique that comes from traditional martial arts. As far as kicks are concerned, the basics are front and round kicks (leg, body, and head). Axe kicks, spin kicks, and jump kicks are considered by many to be less efficient. But then there are those who seek to put on a show and devastate their opponents with these fancy kicks. Raymond Daniels is one of them. Check out this kick KO from Glory.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Why Martial Arts Need Combat Sports

I was looking at some debates on Martial Arts Vs. Traditional Arts. Some believe that martial arts become sports when you create tournaments, rules, etc. They see it as crippling the martial art. Martial arts are supposed to be spiritual and meditative. They are for expressing creativity. Combat sports are for competiton and this supposedly takes something away from the respect and discipline of traditional martial arts. I disagree. Combat sports provide a laboratory for martial artist to experiment. Martial Arts come out of war. Techniques used to kill can't be practiced safely. Most things you can do to another human being. You can grapple, punch, kick, choke, lock joints, etc. against a non-compliant person trying to do the same to you and live to tell about it. Combat sports allow you to experience things that drills and practice can't give you, but they can add to those drills and practice giving you a realistic view of combat.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Age Is Just A Number

It's never too late to get out there and compete. People use age as an excuse. There is something out there for you if you want it. Let's look at some clips of young/older folks getting down. 60 year old karateka sparring 83 years old boxer elderly woman doing karate

Monday, April 28, 2014

How Tough Are You?

I had a great time this past weekend in Birmingham AL, at World Oyama Karate's America's Cup. If you've never seen bare knuckle karate, please do. It is a rough and tumble sport that forces nonstop action and is truly a test of spirit. I even saw a thai boxer try his hand at the sport and finished third. It is always cool to see fighters try other disciplines, especially knockdown. Bare knuckle punches to ribs, liver and solar plexus; knee and shin kicks to the legs, body and head. Go watch some knockdown karate fights. I promise you will be impressed.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Top Injuries in Boxing

I came across this video showing injuries in pro boxing. Cuts and bruises are common. A little discoloration and swelling too. But check this out. You will be amazed at the injuries that happen when guys are fighting for millions.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A Champion Mindset

What does it take to be a champion? Is it the better conditioned athlete? Is it the one with the better technqiue, supplements, etc. No, it is the fighter with the strongest will and desire to win. At the elite level, everybody is good. Everybody has skill, technique, game plans, etc. What it boils down to is the will to win. Not everybody has this. Beyond fatique, pain, and fear is the desire to do whatever it takes to win. You have to believe that even under the worst circumstance you can and will win. Once you can do that, you are on your way to becoming a champion.

Monday, April 21, 2014

49 Years Old Boxing Champ Bernard Hopkins

Formerly the "Executioner", but now the "Alien", Bernard Hopkins unified the World Heavy Championship Belts this past weekend by defeating Bebuit Shumenov. Having wathed B-hop for 20 plus years, he is inspiring. He shows discipline and a mastery of his craft. It will be interesting to see what he does as there are more difficult challenges out there.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Group Fights (Team Vs. Team At The Same Time)

Here's a crazy sport where teams go at it at the same time. As one person is elimated, one team will gradually group up on the last man. Stomping, kicking a downed opponent, and headbutts are allowed. Check this out!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Competition Is Necessary

Last post, I talked about sparring illusions. I said that because you think you are good in practice, don' assume you will be in reality. Competition is needed to see if your stuff really works. I was talking to my buddy and he said that when one is in position to lose something, it because chaotic. What this means is that you place yourself in position where you might lose something (energy, money, some blood, etc.). In practice the environment is much safer. You can stop at anytime. When you have to compete in front of a large audience, you are less likely to stop. Competition makes your reach down deep and push further than you would. So, if somebody tells you differently, I can assure that they haven't competed. Test yourself.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Illusion Of Sparring

Does being good in the gym mean that you are a badass? No. Just because you fight competitively in the gym environment is that it's not the real thing. Good sparring is useful but it's not the same as a real match. The adrenaline, the intent, the intensity, etc. are all different. Winning in the gym is not real. In the gym you have on more safety gear (i.e. headgear, bigger gloves) than you wear in competition. The desire to win increases. In sports, you have the guys who can make the shot or catch the ball in practice, but they drop the ball in the game. Understand that sparring is a training tool, just like bag and pad work. Know that you have to compete to improve your true fighting ability.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Shin Breaks

It happened to Anderson Silva and we just saw it happen to Tyrone Spong in Glory aganist Gohkan Saki. Both of these champions suffered from shin breaks throwing hard low kicks into their opponents block. Throwing a powerful kick at the right angle into a knee can cause this. So, when throwing low kicks set them up first. Let them come behind a hand technqiue or catch them while moving. Here's a clip of Spong's recent injury.

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Uppercut

Nothing hurts like a good uppercut. It lands unexpected and sends a shockwave through your head. It can knock you out or position you for a follow up (cross, or hook). Check this clip out.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Fighting Looks A Lot Different From The Outside

As in all sports, you have side line coaches. Fans who criticize the players and coaches. When watching fights with other, somebodies always criticizing fighters (especially the one losing). Sure we can see mistakes and wonder why these athletes aren't correcting them. We can say that don't have this or can't do that. I always say, "What can you do? Can you do better"? Like the old saying, "Everybody has a plan until they get hit". If all fighers fought perfectly, then no one would lose. Beyond techniques, there's mental toughness, heart, spirit, etc. There are things that you can see that go in determining a winner.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Jean Yves Theriault Fight

You gotta watch the Iceman (before Chuck Lidell), Jean Yves Theriault do his thing. He was a dominant fighter for about a decade back in the day of PKA kickboxing. He had great hands, powerful kicks and put them together in killer combinations. Check out the clip.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Buffaloe Karate

Every once in a while I find updates on young Karate, Christian Buffaloe and his father, Kenny. The Buffaloes contribute much to Karate and this young man is doing big things. He's competed and won internationally. Here's a recent interview.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Boxer Vs Grappler Debate

Over the years we have seen heard the debate on who would win between a boxer and a grappler. In a sporting event most likely the grappler. In a bar fight or initial start of a fight were the first punch lands, most like the boxer. Or better yet in a boxing rules match, the boxer. Understand that boxers don't grapple. They punch and they punch better than most. We've all seen the James Toney vs. Randy Couture MMA fight. Toney was out of his element as the cage is a grappling based sport. In a boxing bout, Toney would win by KO. In looking at some of the bouts of over the hill boxers fighting K-1 and and Japanese wrestlers, we see the boxer enter the ring with his gloves and boots on using boxing against the kickboxer or gloveless wrester. Obviously it was for a quick buck. Being that boxing is a sport that focuses on punching, you will never see the wrestler, mma, or kickboxer fight the over the hill boxer in a boxing match. Why? Because they would most likely get knocked out. The debate is stupid as these sports are as different as International Football (soccer) to American Football. Check this out If you are a boxer, have the kickboxer and grappler fight you in a boxing match afterwards.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Pad Work Nonsense

Having spent many years in boxing gyms I've had the opportunity to watch some of the best boxers and coaches do their thing. Every once and a while I go to fights to work a fighter's corner. I watch coaches warm their fighters up with elaborate mit combinations. There are guys out their making money with pad work seminars teaching their system. When I watch good professional coaches train, it's not complex. If you watch fights or fight yourself you will know that combinations are not complex. Fighter's throw basic stuff. Combinations are usually 2 to 3 techniques per delivery. All this punch, roll, slip, bob, pull, etc. is pretty, but it's not like that at all. Keep it basic and realistic.

Monday, March 31, 2014

The Liver Shot

My favorite spot to hit on the body is the liver. I like to throw the left hook to the body and for leg techniques, it can be: spin back kick, knee, round or side kick. The right side of your opponents body is very sensitive, so when doing your bagwork focus on hammering that right side of the bag. When sparring created combinations to get your opponent to draw than hands up and open up the liver. Watch this body shot KO video.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Tae Kwon Do Knockouts

I came across a cool compilation of TKD knockouts. Remember that TKD is one of the top 2 practiced martial arts in the World (along with Judo). Great kicks in this clip. Go stretch out and get to kicking.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Cro Cop Kick of Death

In his prime, Mirko Cro Cop was the best kicker in the game. His left leg was feared. In days of Pride, he almost unstoppable. Wherever he kicked, damage resulted. Here's a highlight of Mirko. As he aged, injuries affected his kicking ability (lucky for his post Pride opponents).

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

American Full Contact Karate

Here is a classic bout between 2 Kickboxing champions, Ross Scott and Jerry Rhome. This is early full contact karate which would later become American Kickboxing. This was before they used boxing gloves and they just started using a boxing ring. This helps give history of full contact martial arts in America. Traditional Karate tournanemt fighters sought a full contact platform which became kickboxing. In the 70s, 80s, and 90s American Kickboxing developed. In the 90s and 2000s, Muay Thai, NHB (early 90s becomes MMA by late 90s). Now the rise of Glory Kickboxing. See all the cool stuff we have to study.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Sacrafice Makes Champions

What are you willing to do to be good at what you do? Are you easily side tracked away from training? Will you train when you don't feel like it? To be a champion you must do what most others won't. Train! Believe or not there are a lot who talk a lot, but don't put in the work. Walk the walk, don't talk about it.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Yodsanklai At Thai Fight

Here's Muay Thai superstar, Yodsanklai Fairtex fighting in Thai Fight. In this match he is doing it old school Muay Thai, with no gloves, only rope wrapped around the hands. Some hard punches are throw here.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Cliff Thomas vs Tommy Williams

Another classic bout from the PKA days of kickboxing. Two champions in an exciting fight. Above the waist kickboxing were the rules at this time, so a lot of action of boxing and kicking. Enjoy.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Fight Fighters Most Powerful Weapon

A fighters most powerful weapon is not his strength, speed, or cardio. It is his MIND. You have to believe in yourself and exude this confidence when you compete. You have to deny defeat and feel that you can when no matter what. Even if you are losing, you have to have the belief that you can turn the table and compete victoriously. Never give, never surrender, and never accept defeat.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Ilias Iliadis Highlight

Ilias Iliadis is a powerhouse in sport of judo. He is Olympic, World, and European Champion. If you understand judo, you will see the power in technique.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Classic Kickboxing Fight Vizzio Vs. Jackson

Here's a great lightweight kickboxing bout (above the waist) from the early 80s, with Richard Jackson and Paul Vizzio. Both of these fighters were superstars of the sport. Jackson fought out of Atlanta and trained with my first kickboxing trainer, the later Asa Gordon, so it's cool to watch. Both guys show good hands, hard kicks and hard chins. Watch and learn from this bout.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Glory 14 Kickboxing Best Fight

Glory 14 featured some of the top kickboxers going at it in Croatia. The fight of the night was Andy Ristie being upset by Davit Kiria in a title fight of 5 rounds. Davit came back from a knockdown and finished the champ in the 5th by KO.

Monday, March 10, 2014

You Need Full Contact To Make Your Martial Art Work

Full contact means applying your skills against a non-compliant resisting opponent. Just because you hit somebody hard doesn't mean they will fall down and die. One doesn't have to go out and get a kickboxing match to experience contact. Contact training can be done in ways to get participants a realistic feel. Grappling can be done almost all out without injury (just make sure you tap). Striking arts have to be monitored a little more as a hard blow can easily make one go to sleep or break a nose. But, contact training is necessary to learn effective martial arts.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Why I Practice Traditional Karate and Combat Sports

There are different schools of thoughts when it comes to fighting. The traditional view and the practical view. The combat sportman will feel that traditional training (kihon, kata, etc.) is useless. The traditional practioneer might feel that the sports fighter has a big ego and lacks discipline. I still put on a Gi (Karate and Judo), I bow, count and call commands in Japanese, etc. I still get in the horse stance and cat stance and practice the basics. I practice forms (empty hand and weapons). I still wear Muay Thai shorts, and sometimes boxing boots. I simple enjoy that practice of all these things and I always have. Guys of narrow views have questioned me whether my traditional techniques work. I always prove it. Traditional guys might ask the same. I always prove it.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Happiness In Fighting

Many find it strange when I say that I was always happy to fight. I don't mean that in a weird, sadistic way. There was never anger in me while I competed. I didn't fight because i wanted to hurt and beat people up. I didn't fight for money. I did it because I enjoyed competiton. I wanted to test myself against quality opponents. I wanted to test what I learned in class and in the gym. Enjoy competing, don't treat it like you are fighting for you life. Have fun.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Old Lightweight PKA Fight

Another great kickboxing fight from the 80s. Some good lighweight fighters with a lot of action. For you old school kickboxing fans, enjoy.

Monday, March 3, 2014

My Personal Kicking Style

People are always asking what is the superior kicking style. Years ago, I was having a debate with a Muay Thai stylst about Thai style kicks versus other kickboxing style kicks (i.e. American Kickboxing kicks which come out of Karate and Tae Kwon Do). I told him that the Knockout doesn't care what kind of kick it is as long as it rattles the brain. You can slap someone hard enough to knock them out or you can use a sledge hammer. Starting out as a Korean based stylist (Tang Soo Do and Tae Kwon Do), I had the opportunity to train with guys who specialized in kicking. Through kickboxing I was able to train with Thai kickboxers and learn different ways to deliver powerful kicks. I kicking with a snapping style based on speed. It is a relaxed method where I used momentum of body (not muscle) to generate power. This way I can kick over and over even when tired.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Judo Ippon Highlight

Came across this cool video of some throws by some of the best Judo players in the game. If you've never tried Judo Randori (sparring), you need to. The challenge of controlling another person balance while keeping yours is hard enough. To pull off techniques like these in the video is on the highest level. Enjoy.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Rousey Top Grappler In MMA

I think Ronda Rousey is one of the best grapplers in MMA. I'm not saying that because she has dominated all of her competition. Some have questioned how she would do against other top grapplers. I say she would probably dominate them. The main reason is her experience as a competitor. By the age of 21 she won a Bronze in the Olympics, a Silver in the World Championships, a Gold in the Pan Am, multiple National Championships, and more. These are serious accomplishments that put her above other grapplers in MMA (men or women). She has too much experience for those who stand before her. She started her MMA career at 22 and is in her prime (where as a lot of other atheletes are past theirs when transitioning to MMA).

Monday, February 24, 2014

The Problem With Martial Arts

What is the best? THe most effective? Blah Blash. I will tell this. In order for you martial art to be effective, it has to be validated. Many traditional martial arts styles teach in theory and students may never get to apply what they learn against a resisting opponent. Some may train in a reality based style, but never spar. If you don't spar (with contact) it won't work. If you don't grapple (with resistance), it won't work. Combat sports like boxing, wrestling, kickboxing, etc. are effective because participants learn what works and doesn't. Make sure what you learn is battle tested and validated.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Kickboxing Classic Piotrowski Vs Thurman

Here's a great fight for you to watch. Marek Piotrowski and Bob "Thunder" Thurman. This is an old school full contact (above the waist) kickboxing bout featuring to of the sport's top fighters during this time. Great hands and powerful kicks. The ability to take and dish it out. Despite losing, Thurman shows that heart and spirit of a warrior. Enjoy.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Knockout Points Part II

In the last post, I talked about KO points. Today I wanted to show examples from a few clips. Example I: Here's a couple of rounds from an old kickboxing (American Style) from the 90s. There is a kick to the head and left hook to the liver. My opponent was still able to get up and continue fighting (Larry was a tough! May he RIP). Example II: 2002 TEAM USA, This Triathlon fight will demonstrate my favorite techniques and my method of picking the spots of pain we've been discussing. You will see the low kick, Attacks to the liver with kicks, knees and punches. Attacks to the head/jaw with kicks and punches. Strikes are placed to the targets and not randomly.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Knockout Spots

In knocking out, TKOing, stopping and an opponent, I will share my favorite spots on the body to finish an opponent. We'll start from head to toe. 1) Top of the head and temple area (shin/instep, hook punch, knee). 2) The chin/jaw area (cross, hook, uppercut, knee, shin, foot). 3) Nose (if broken can get the TKO). 4) Solar Plexus/belly (knee, liner kicks, punch, elbow) wind taker. 5) Liver (anything that hits it hard) will drop a man like a sack of bricks. 6) Femoral Nerve (low kicks), takes away the leg.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Weight Training For Knockout Power?

Will weight training help you develop KO power? Not really. After working out with some of the top amateur and pro boxers around, I watched and studied their training methods. How much weight one lifted had no bearing on their ability to knock another fighter out. I'm not saying that weight training is not effective. But it won't make you a knockout artist. One of the hardest I remember being hit was by a guy who weighed 125lbs. The reason hit so hard was because he put all of his 125lbs into his punch. Now, a knockout can be caused many ways, and sometimes strength has nothing to do with it. Timing and placement of a shot or catching a guy moving in might do the trick. Or, a guy like "Big" George Foreman might punch through some guys guard and put him to sleep. The brute strength knockout is innate. The technical knockout is learned.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Marek Piotrowski

Here's an old school kickboxing (above the waist style) of Marek Piotrowski fighting. He was the first fighter to beat Rick Roufus back in the day. He also beat Don Wilson. He had great hands and feet and was always on the attack.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

My Favorite Kicker

I watched this fight and remembered why Jerry Trimble is my favorite kicker of all time. I had the pleasure of training with him when I started kickboxing back in the 80s. I held mits for his kicks, watched him kick a lot of people and had the pleasure of being on the receiving end of those kicks. I have competed in kickboxing, muay thai, and tae kwon do and I have never meet a kicker of his ability. This is a good fight between Jerry "Golden Boy" Trimble and JB Lavota from the 80s.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Cut Weight Or Improve You Skills?

Weight cutting is still such a big issue in combat sports. Getting to the top of weight class where one thinks he will have a strength advantage is the philosophy. From high school athletes to professional fighters, this is common. Some say they have it down to a science. I still say that if you lose more than 10 lbs for a fight, your are do your body a disservice. It is bad on your organs, you risk going flat during the event, and it just plain sucks. Improve your skills instead of starving yourself. When I competed, I didn't care if you cut weight and came down to my division. It wouldn't help.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Jerry Rhome PKA Fight

Had to share another American Kickboxing great, Jerry "The Flash" Rhome. I had the fortune of training with this 2x World Champion in the late 80s and early 90s. This was a time when PKA Kickboxing was televised weekly on ESPN. Jerry was good with his hands and feet. He sparred a lot with Evander Hollyfield back during these times.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Shidokan Atlanta: Be Well Rounded Part II

Shidokan Atlanta: Be Well Rounded Part II: In my last post, I talked about being a well rounded martial artist. I said that one can seek perfection in more than one discipline. To thi...

Be Well Rounded Part II

In my last post, I talked about being a well rounded martial artist. I said that one can seek perfection in more than one discipline. To this day, I am always trying to perfect my skills in all ranges of combat (punching, kicking, grappling, etc.). Here are some clips of me in this quest. As a Kicker, my sport of choice is Tae Kwon Do As a Grappler, my sport of choice is Judo For overall striking, Boxing and Kickboxing My MMA experiences are throw Shidokan Triathlon (karate, kickboxing, grappling)

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Be Well Rounded

In looking at today's combat sports, in particular Kickboxing and MMA, fighters have to have a well rounded game. Being one dimensional in combat sports makes it harder for you. Let's not confuse one dimensional with ineffectiveness. People watch Kickboxing and MMA and assume that these sports are superior to individual disciplines for real fighting or self defense. Keep in mind that the guy who trains MMA is not superior in the individual disciplines. You can be a champion in Kickboxing, but that does not mean you can be one in TKD (kicking) or Boxing (hands). You can be a good submission guy in MMA, but that doesn't mean you can be as good in Judo or BJJ. In a real fight the specialist is at a disadvantage if not his element, but he is dangerous in that element. My personal goal as a martial artist is to perfect my skills as best I can in individual as well as mixed.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Ineffective Martial Arts Techniques

In looking at a lot of martial arts out there, many systems are just not effective. I won't call any names (don't want to offend LOL), but in looking at teaching methodologies, philosophies, theories, etc., I'd like to share some principles that is necessary to know what is effective. If you are training with an instructor who has no fighting experience, get a new one. If you are learning a deadly technique (that's too dangerous to train with a non-compliant partner) watch out. If you are learning to defend yourself and you don't practice consistently, it won't work when the stuff hits the fan. If you don't have impact practice (against bags, pads, people, etc.) or spar, your techniques probably won't work.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Pro Fight Karate Match

Here's a good match from the French Promotion, Pro Karate Fight. Fisher Striker takes on Yoann Kongolo in an exciting match. You will see punches, kicks, knees, elbows and a couple of takedowns. This style of competition is a cross between MMA, Muay THai and Karate. You won't see any ground fighting, but you will see some intense action.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Learn New Stuff Or Remembering Old Stuff?

Everybody always wants to learn new stuff. What about what you already know? The older I get the more I know what I don't know. We've all heard that before. Despite all the cool new excercies and techniques I learn, it always cool to revisit the old excercises and techniques. By doing this you remember that they are just as good as the new stuff.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Street Fighter Vs. Reality Defense Fighter Vs.Sport Fighter

Who would you put your money on in a street fight? The Street Fighter, the Sport Fighter or the Reality Defense fighter? I'm gonna put mine on the Sport Fighter. Now, anything can happen in a real fight. A guy lands a sucker punch or pulls a weapon out unseen, etc. This can happen to any of the 3. But, looking at what a full contact fighter goes through to prepare for competition (running, pad and bag work, sparring with well trained partners, etc.), this fighter gets repitition of effective fighting. Sure, the reality defense fighter, will say that the it's sport and not real. But, a hard punch, kick, knee, elbow, choke, joint lock, etc. delivered on a non-compliant opponent trained to receive these techniques is as real as it can get.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Old School American Kickboxing's Richard Jackson

Came across another cool Kickboxing match from the 80s featuring Richard Jackson. He trained out of Atlanta back in the day with my first kickboxing coach, the late James Asa Gordon. Watch and check out the change of how American tournament fighters transitioned into full contact fighters.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Old School PKA Fight

Came across this fight on Youtube with Rick "The Jet" Roufus. This is when ESPN aired PKA kickboxing back in the 80s. Chuck Norris starts the clip off and you will see a great KO by Roufus.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Shotokan Karate's Mikio Yahara

Here's a great of old school Shotokan Karate Champ, Mikio Yahara. Hardcore traditional Karate and great technique. The philosophy of Shotokan is to deliver techniques with enough power for one blow kill. Watch his sparring matches (during a time when Shotokan used no pads) and you will see controlled power.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Desire, A Want Or Need?

What is your desire? You want to be good at something or attain a level of something, so you think you have a desire. It could be a want, but to me a desire is a need. Wants come and go. You might want something, but if the acquisition of that want is difficult, you might change your mind. But if you want it regardless of how difficult its is to get, that is true desire. Chase it, overcome all obstacles, never give up, and get it!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Silva Leg Break

The Silva vs. Weidman has been talked about a lot lately. A lot of people call the 1st fight a fluke, saying Weidman landed a lucky punch. In the 2nd fight we have the leg break after the inside low kick is blocked. Here's a clip of the break. So, many will say that Weidman is lucky again. Whatever, bad luck twice or whatever you want to call it, he deserves the title.

Saturday, January 4, 2014


Fear, nervousness, doubt, etc. enter the mind of competitors (and everybody in general) at some point. How do you deal with it? You face it! When you are nervous about a test or a fight coming up, as you get close to that ordeal you have to evaluate yourself and be able to give yourself an honest assessment. This always you to ask the question? Did I study, train, practice or do whatever I need to as best as I could for this event? If you can answer with a yes, then half the battle is over. The only other issue that makes you nervous is the unknown, the outcome. I will tell you this, never fear, embrace it! The only time to be afraid is when you haven't prepared (and if you didn't, you still gotta deal with it).

Thursday, January 2, 2014


Confidence is one of those things we are told to have but not always taught to have. Some people view confidence as ego and some view it as charisma. Look at successful people. They are ususally driven and competitive. Look at successful athletes. Sometimes people who know them will say they have huge egos. A big ego is not a bad thing but a false ego is. There are folks who see themselves as winners and never put themselves on the stage to see if they can really win at something. Those are the people with false egos. Those who test themselves, get out there and perform, have health egos and real confidence. Remember that talk is cheap. You must achieve it or show effort of trying to. Be true to yourself and perform to the best of your abilities. Don't be afraid of failure. You have to be able to lose to win. A winner gets up and keeps trying when knocked down and never accepts defeat.