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small icon for facebookToday, or rather, yesterday – as I type this it’s past 1am – the kids in my Grapple & Strike class excelled.

I took them through the syllabus, preparing them for their next grading. While I was doing so, as usual, they kept asking when they could spar.

These kids are crazy for sparring. They want to try out what they learn immediately.

So I let them.

Out of the several pairs sparring, two stood out.

A pairing of a nine year old boy and a 10 year old was very memorable. These two really went at it.

I got the feeling their was some bad blood between the two.

They were hitting each furiously. To the extent I thought about stopping them.

But then, I figured it’s better they got it out of their system in training – with protection – rather than out in the streets.

Two minutes of fury later they did get it out of their systems. It was done and dusted.

I declared the fight a draw and they were both happy.

But that wasn’t the most memorable pairing. Not by a long-shot.

That honour went to the last two – Beast and Cobra (their nick-names, in case you wondered).

These two are both six years old. And Beast usually lives up to his title.

Usually when they spar, Cobra is left almost crying, but refusing to give up. That’s courage.

However, this time I had a quick, quiet word with Beast. “Take it easy, okay? I know what you can do. Don’t be too hard on him.”

Beast nodded.

The next two minutes, was a masterclass in self-control.

All the kids were screaming their heads off:

“Get him, cobra!”

“Beat him up, Beast!”

This went on and on. Those were a long two minutes, even for me.

Beast held back so much he surprised me. Don’t forget: this is a six year old kid.

He could have finished the fight almost before it began, if he wanted to. But he took it easy on Cobra. Just like I asked him to.

Let me tell you: I don’t know many adults who could hold back like that. Especially considering he knew the others would think he couldn’t beat Cobra.

One thing I do know, if he carries on training, by the time he gets to be 10 he’ll beat boys five years older than him. Maybe more.

On another note, Suhayl Patel, who’s been training in Hakai Waza with me since November 2013, got his 7th kyu (red belt) a little while back. And today he graded for and passed his 6th kyu (yellow belt).

So congratulations to Suhayl.

After the grading he kept saying it was tougher than 3rd kyu gradings in other systems. So that should give you an indication of the level of my students.

 

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Erik Paulson has got to be one the best coaches around today.

Check this out to see why.

 

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I like the way Tony Cecchine breaks down each and every move he shows.

His videos on catch wrestling are some of the best around.

 

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Some really neat catch moves. And Erik is right: I haven’t seen those moves before.

 

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Just saw this over at Blackbelt.com. Good example of how simple is usually best.

 

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Grapple & Strike

We’ve moved.

Visit our Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/GrappleAndStrike

Rezbi’s Grapple & Strike …

Have moved. But not too far.

In fact the new place is opposite the old, same building, at Cobra’s MMA. And it’s a bigger.

Just want to say thanks to Jimmy at JC’s Gym for hiring his place out to me for the last few months.

The new place is here. Click the link to see Cobra’s MMA:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cobras-MMA-Kick-Boxing-Accrington/230963440262989

 

Grapple & Strike's photo.

 

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I’ve had a few scrapes in my time.

One thing I remember is that no matter who I was fighting, if there was a crowd watching, my knees would turn to Jelly.

It was just one of those things.

More than the thought of fighting an opponent, a watching crowd scared the living daylights out of me more.

As a result, I’d look like a chicken that couldn’t fight to save my life.

The problem was that, after a while, this carried over into other areas of my life.

I started to feel afraid even when there wasn’t a crowd watching.

I’d take every opportunity to avoid getting into a scrap… with anyone.

Unless, of course, I was in a bad mood.

Then it didn’t matter who I was facing.

The moment they gave me the eye it was a matter of, “What you lookin’ at!?”

And, in those moments, I realized the power that I must have wielded.

Why?

Because in those cases never once did I back down.

And not once did I have to.

What was the difference?

It was this…

What we perceive as fear is not really fear.

What we feel is our hearts beating faster and the palms getting sweaty. Our whole body tenses up, shaking … as a result of the adrenaline being released at that moment.

Adrenaline, that is preparing the body for fight or flight.

It is also this same adrenaline that makes us stronger and immune to pain.

Not sure if that’s true?

Think about it.

If you’ve been in a fight, or something similar, and you’ve been hit once or twice…

When did you feel it: during the event… or some time later, maybe when you’re sitting down relaxing?

See, the anaesthetic effect has worn off by then and the pain starts to hit.

Anyway, back to my point.

When I was in a bad mood, I didn’t feel the effects of the adrenaline taking over.

Instead of allowing myself to feel afraid and letting the shakes take over, I channelled it into aggression.

That aggression manifested itself through the one outlet I could use to my advantage at that moment…

My eyes.

If there’s one thing I’ve realized it’s this: When I get angry… I mean really angry… I can stare down almost anyone.

Why?

Because I mean it.

And, I’m more than willing, and able, to back it up.

This is something I think my training has enhanced.

In my system of training, there is no such thing as defence. Not in the strictest sense.

You see, defence means you wait to be attacked before ‘defending’ against it. That may or may not work out.

However, if you attack first, when you know the assailant is about to attack you, it’s a different matter.

Then it becomes a pre-emptive strike. Something I advocate in my training.

As long as you use reasonable force to avoid being hammered by your opponent, that’s a good thing.

Just don’t keep hitting him when it’s obvious you’ve done enough to end the fight, or get away.

Hakai Waza is such a system. It’s a system based on attack first.

Don’t wait for them to hit first.

If you let them make the first move, you may as well let them beat the crap out of you.

Pure and simple.

And that’s what Hakai Waza is… pure and simple.

Don’t just stand there and let your opponent hit you.

Hit first and hit hard the moment you know you’re in danger of being attacked.

I know that’s easier said than done. That’s why when we train, we train for real.

There’s no such thing as ‘if you do this then I do that’.

This is as real as it gets without sending each other to hospital.

I hit.

If you don’t get out of the way…

I hit YOU.

And vice versa.

If you get hit, you get hurt.

I know. I’ve felt it.

And I’ve dished it out.

The thing with this type of training is that, if you get into a fight in the streets, you’ve got the mental steeliness to back you up.

All you have to remember is that, no matter how hard your opponent hits you, you’ve probably been hit harder in training.

 

 

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