|Heavyweight (Per 4/15)|
|Light HW (per 4/15)|
|Middleweight (per 4/15)|
|Welterweight (per 4/15)|
|4.||Marc de Bonte|
|70kg (Per 4/15)|
|3.||Robin van Roosmalen|
|65kg (per 1/20)|
Back to training, and the key word for today: kicks. Right kick to the body, left kick to the body. Two right kicks, fast on top of each other. Two right kicks, switch, two left kicks. Working various manner of right/left combinations leads me to a few observations.
First, the ability to quickly switch stances and to control how you bring your leg down after a kick is huge. I admire that ability to look effortless in your switch to a south paw stance and immediately throw the left kick. I’m definitely not there yet, as I can execute the switch and kick, but it’s so deliberate and telegraphed that an opponent would see it coming a mile away and I would never get the kick off. But that’s what drills are for. The other aspect of this footwork that eludes me is bringing your foot back down in a different position then when you threw the kick. Example: throwing a left kick from the back leg, then bringing your left leg down in the lead position in order to immediately throw a right kick. This sounds obvious and simple, but there’s something about the weight distribution that I find very challenging. Perhaps I need to get all boxing style on it and work jump rope and things to get lighter on my feet. As with all of this training, it really makes you appreciate when you see someone like Giorgio Petrosyan who is an absolute master of footwork.
The other big question for me this week was finding the right balance between keeping your guard up and using your hands to help give you power when kicking. This is a tough line to find, and it’s one I recall The Voice discussing on more than one occasion during fights. Particularly for Muay Thai, there is a tendency to chop with your hand as you throw a kick in order to add some extra power and torque to the kick. And this is naturally what your body wants to do – try throwing a kick while covering your head and your hands will naturally drop to help push that kick through. But the downside is obvious – dropping that hand exposes the head, and against an opponent with good timing, this is an easy way to get yourself KO’d. So how do you find that balance? For me, the big thing I am working on in this area is simply getting the hand back up to guard as fast as possible, and maybe that’s the answer. But I’d be curious to hear from those more experienced if this is an area they think about at all.
Last kicking note – on a personal level, one thing I need to work on is my range. I’m pretty tall (6’4”) and want to use that height to my advantage, but I still haven’t figured out quite the right range for my kicks. As a result, I don’t always catch the pads just right, which throws me off balance, and frankly, just looks embarrassing. Got to keep at it and find that range.
Speaking of embarrassing – I suffered my first (very minor) injury today. Nothing bad, just a bruised or sprained or some word that is slightly less than broken, but still discolored and painful toe. And how did I get this injury? From improper technique on a kick? Better yet, from using so much power on the kick that my toe simply could not stand the force? Nope, I snagged it on the edge of the mat when dropping down for a push up. This is not exactly the kind of training injury I envisioned, and is unlikely to wow you with my dedication, but hey, I’m here to tell you what happened – even if it is a bit on the humiliating side. Now off to get some tape before next time.
Training Diary is a weekly series documenting my journey starting Muay Thai training. For more on this series, read the first entry here. I train at Conviction Fitness & Martial Arts, 4430 N. Western Ave., Chicago, IL www.convictionfitness.com.
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There are very few MMA fighters that I consider an all-time favorite of mine, as I tend to prefer the exciting, intelligent striker who can handle himself on the ground. There are a lot of good strikers who have made the move to MMA, but a lot tend to play it safe or have no real ground game to speak of, but then there is Wanderlei Silva. Wanderlei did not make a huge impression on me at first in his UFC fights, he was pretty good at the time, but the Tito Ortiz fight was enough to make me forget about him for a while.
So you can only imagine how I felt in 2001, yeah over a year later, when I saw him again in PRIDE and saw the absolutely path of carnage and destruction that lay in his path; I was hooked. The wrist roll, the stare of a madman, the crazy, brawling Chute Boxe Muay Thai and the ability to defend himself on the ground and work his way back to his feet to continue to symphony of violence. From 2000 until 2005 Wanderlei Silva was an absolute machine. If there ever was a fighter that I could get behind it was Wanderlei Silva.
As I'm sure you can imagine, since he moved over to a much more local fight scene in the United States, it has been a lot more difficult to be a Wanderlei Silva fan. Since his return to the UFC Wanderlei has a 2 - 3 record with only one knockout under his belt and doesn't seem to be moving as fast or hitting as hard. Lot's of people will say that Wanderlei was simply not that great, as he is a mere 34 years old right now, but to that I argue the man started his fighting career training at age 13 and was fighting within the next year of his life and has not slowed down since. He peaked before moving to the UFC and you have to be comfortable with that.
Enter the Voice Versus Wanderlei Silva. The latest in HDnet's interview series with Michael Schiavello. Unlike Fighting Words with Mike Straka, which tends to err on the side of serious journalism, the Voice Versus is a more friendly sit-down interview style that feels like a conversation between old friends. It doesn't matter if Schiavello has only met each fighter in passing or is good friends with him, his demeanor, tone and candor makes it so fighters can feel at home with him, as does his knowledge of each fighter's history and of tall tales. There is nothing different when it comes to the Wanderlei Silva episode as he discusses coming up in Brazil, the origins of his name, that Jiu-Jitsu photo of him being lovingly embraced by Shogun Rua and Wanderlei customizing Schiavello's head with a Team WS tattoo.
What really comes through loud and clear is how nice of a guy Wanderlei is, he talks about how he has to build up a rage inside of him when he fights and how the adrenaline changes him, but the man himself is gentle, quiet and very funny. Seeing "the Axe Murderer" in a setting like this is refreshing, as you get to see just how much he enjoys laughing and telling stories about the legendary Chute Boxe gym and how he considers most of the fighters he has faced and knocked out our been knocked out by as good friends now. Did you know that Kazushi Sakuraba calls Wanderlei up at 2am to discuss fights? Because he does. We also see that Wand has no desire to do kickboxing post-UFC, as he understands they are entirely different sports and he is not prepared to fight high level strikers.
So do yourself a favor and tune in on Friday Night at 8pm Eastern for the Voice Versus Wanderlei Silva on HDnet.Add a comment
Alistair Overeem could very well be done with the world of K-1 for now. A lot of people have been sleeping on this factor, but this could be the fallout from Zuffa purchasing Strikeforce and the fact that many fighters will be offered Zuffa contracts from Joe Silva and Co. almost immediately to lock them in. To say that a fighter like Alistair Overeem wouldn't be on that list would be to not know who he is. Overeem is the current Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion, and with his desire to fight in the United States and Zuffa currently owning the US MMA scene and FEG not paying him, it would be difficult to assume that he'd turn down a Zuffa contract.
Fight Game, Golden Glory's Clothing and All-Encompassing brand put up a new interview with the Champ where he discusses a few reader-asked topics. We also note that Fight Game has a US-based store now, so if you want one of those bad ass Overeem or Golden Glory shirts you see on all of those K-1, Ultimate Glory, It's Showtime and Strikeforce shows, you now can. Oh, and there is a US-based distribution center, so the shipping is dirt cheap. So head on over there and grab some stuff after you listen to Overeem.
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We're just coming off a busy kickboxing weekend in the midst of a jam packed March, and already April is looking stacked. We've previously covered 8 April cards featuring top international names - here's a 9th to add to the list.
On April 9 in Moscow, KO Fight Club will host the W5 Grand Prix - a one night, 4 man, 71kg tournament. They've already announced the field, and it's pretty nice. In semi-final #1, the resurgent #7 ranked Mike Zambidis will face Enriko Gogokhia. The other semi-final sees #23 Dzhabar Askerov vs. William Diender.
Really good stuff here, with a very solid line-up. As I mentioned, Zambidis has seemingly come out of nowhere to reclaim his spot as one of the division's most dangerous strikers, while Askerov looked simply phenomenal in his 1 round destruction at the Oktagon event a few weeks ago. A Zambo vs. Askerov final would be something to see. As for the other two - Diender also puts up a good fight, but will be a big underdog to Askerov. Gogokhia was a semi-finalist in last year's K-1 MAX East Europe GP, losing to eventual champ Vitaly Hurkou, but he looked good at that show, and I'm interested to see him once again.
Also on the card are superfights featuring Alexander Stetsurenko, Basil Tereshonok, Ramil Novruzov, Roman Mailov, Vladimir Mineev, and Vitaly Shemetov, plus a reserve fight of Vladimir Shuliak vs. Peter Woznicki.Add a comment
We do a lot of things here at LiverKick.com, we keep up relationships with the big promotions around the world, we speak with fighters on a regular basis and we do our best to keep hardcore fans informed and happy as well as break down the sport for newcomers to make them feel welcome to the world of kickboxing. We understand just coming into the kickboxing world completely dry can be a bit of a stretch for some people; it is an entirely different sport, and while some parts will be familiar, like the basics, a lot of the rules, names, promotions, titles and tournaments can be entirely confusing and turn off people who don't have a wealth of information at their finger tips.
I've been following kickboxing for 15 years or so now and even I get frustrated with there being no central place for information and that promotions, camps and fighters themselves don't keep up to date information. For example, Bas Boon of Golden Glory sent out a press release about the Ultimate Glory show this weekend and it listed Wendy Annonay as one of the fighters on the card when he was not at all on the card.
It is this kind of information that frustrates us here at LiverKick.com and could only turn away the average newcomer in a blink of an eye.
So we've had it. One of the tools that a lot of MMA fans reference as helpful for them learning about fighters and promotions is the Sherdog.com Fight Finder. It is an absolutely incredible tool, only recently rivaled by the Wikipedia community. For kickboxing, there is no resource outside of Wikipedia. Wikipedia does indeed have a lot of valuable information, a lot of that we've been using for ourselves recently to help build up a tool for you; the hardcore fan, the newer fan, the promoter, the professional fighter or simply the historians.
Enter WikiKick. WikiKick is our hat being thrown into the ring, for now we are in the process of building up a database, and there will be some information that is redundant to Wikipedia for the time being, but that is where you come in. Are you a fighter and is your record incorrect or simply not on Wikipedia? We want to hear from you. Are you a promoter and want your card listed somewhere available to those looking for information about events? We want to hear from you. Are you a historian and have all of this valuable information inside of a book? We want to hear from you, scan it, type it, do anything! Are you a fan who just wants there to be a resource like that? Then join us.
Use the contact form at the bottom of LiverKick.com and contact us, or simply go to WikiKick and get started, we left all of the information you'll need to get started using Wiki software, and if you don't feel comfortable, don't worry, just email us and we'll take your information and post it for you.Add a comment
Now I'm only 20 so when it comes to guys like Pete Cunningham, Don Wilson, Benny Urquidez etc.. I can't say I know a whole lot about those guys, or much about the kickboxing boom in the 70's and 80's in general. I'm sure there were some badass KO's in that time, but since Im not as familiar with those times Im keeping this to mainly the 90's and on.
10 It's not Mirko: Mladen Brestovac vs. Zentai Mate from 2009. Mirko CroCop isn't the only Croatian with a badass left high kick. Meet a training partner of his Mladen Brestovac. Flush! He's young, in a few years don't be surprised if he's a household name.
9 Shin Meet Head: Orono Vor Petchpun vs. William Diender from 2007. Now William Diender is a quality fighter, nothing special, but he's solid. Orono Vor Petchpun on the other hand is a great fighter. Champ at Lumpinee, and the current It's Showtime 65 KG champion. The one thing Diender had going for him in this fight was size, does it pay off?
8.5 Shin Meet Bigger Head: Kaoklai Kaennorsing vs. Mighty Mo from the 2004 K-1 World Grand Prix Final. This was a quarterfinal bout, and once again there is a disparity in size. But this time were talking well over 100 pounds.
8 Brazilian Kick: Glaube Feitosa vs. Alex Roberts from 2008.
7 You Should Have Stayed Down: Remy Bonjasky vs. Petar Majstorovic from 2002. This is a nice little fight where both guys score a knockdown, however its obvious which one should have stayed down.
6 Bow To The Emperer: Namsaknoi Yudthagarngamtorn vs. Baipet(ch)? I'm not sure of the eaxt date here, but I'm guessing late 90's. Yeah, namsaknoi is one of the greatest, and I have no idea who Baipet is. I wonder who wins?
5 I did it first: Taishin Kohiruimaki vs. Akeomi Nitta from the finals of the 2005 K-1 MAX Japan tournament. This could be viewed as a front kick, push kick, or what not. But at the end of the day all that matter is its a kick to the head. Now Nitta was a good fighter in the late 90's and early 2000's, but was coming off a layoff. However he won his previous 2 fights earlier in the night and it set up a final, and a rematch with Kohi. In 1997 Nitta knocked Kohi out. Would Kohi get his revenge?
4 Perfect Timing: Jaroenthong Kiatbanchong vs. Andrea from the 90's. Sorry, I have no clue what Andrea's last name is, or maybe first name. The OneSongchai DVD doesn't give both names for this guy. However he probably doesn't mind that his full name isn't on the event.
3 Revenge!: Stefan Leko vs. Badr Hari from 2005. Five months prior to this fight Stefan Leko stopped Hari with a spinning kick to the body. This time around it was Hari spinning.
2 Is he dead?: Peter Aerts vs. Jean Claude Leuyer from 1996. There about 2 billion head kick KO's from Aerts, but this one is the most memorable to me, and one of the few times during a fight the thought "is he dead?" has crossed my mind. Danny Bennett vs. Jay R Palmer from one of the old Superbrawl shows was the only other time I can remember thinking that.
1 False Sense Of Security: Therdkiat Sittepitak vs. Jongsanan Fairtex from the 90's. This isn't the most sensational kick out of the group, but I absolutely love the set up. Uppercut, uppercut, uppercut. "OK he's backing off me" BAM! Absolutely beautiful. And Jongsanan Fairtex was one of my favorite Muay Thai fighters of all time. Therdkiat had his number big time in this fight.
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Japan is in dismay still from the earth-shattering (literally) 9.0 Earthquake that happened just a week and a half ago off the Northeastern coast of Japan, triggering aftershocks that would send most of us reeling, tsunamis that we got to watch wash away entire towns and cities live across the world and finally the uncertainty that comes from fires in nuclear reactors. It has already been rated about as much of a toxic disaster as 1979's Three Mile Island incident in Pennsylvania that scared Americans to death about the future of nuclear energy. So, donate if you can, to any charitable organization you feel fit.
Secondly, if you are like me, you had a few heroes in the MMA and fighting world in general. If you did, Genki Sudo was probably on the list somewhere. The guy was simply amazing on many levels; from his insane grappling ability, to the striking skills he picked up, to his incredible dance skills and intricate entrances, to his acting, to his people skills, world outlook and of course, now his music. This guy really has done everything.
Genki Sudo's message to the Japanese people and world remains as clear as ever; WE ARE ALL ONE. In his message, he talks about the darkness of these disasters eating up the light, but wants people to remain positive; "and I also believe that no matter how strong that darkness is, we can always use light to beat it back."
This same day, he released a mind-boggling, insane new music video that tops the last one for slow-motion dance moves over a real-time world. He also asks very serious questions, apparently; "Where's the world going, won't somebody tell me? Are these thoughts illusion? Are we all one? Can this world change, is this feeling an illusion?"
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Time gets the better of all of us once in a while, and for me, there has been a lot of combat sports lately, enough so to where I kept putting off discussing this weekend's It's Showtime event. Now here I am early on Tuesday morning trying to sell you on watching the fights this weekend. The big fight coming up is a 61kg MAX It's Showtime World Championship bout between the champion, Sergio Wiezlen.
Wiezlen, for a fighter at a mere 61kg (135lbs) has a ton of power to go with his speed. If you need proof, watch this video from a fighter last year, where Wiezlen faced off against a former Lumpini and four time Rajadamnern Stadium Champion (this was of course 2003 - 2006ish) and annihilated him with a right head kick.
Not sold yet? OK, in December Sergio defended his newly won It's Showtime 61kg MAX crown against a game challenger in Masahiro Yamamoto. Yamamoto was able to match him with speed, but not in power. One of my favorite moments in this fight is the left knee in the first round that puts Yamamoto down. Wiezlen looks to use those knees like a mini Ubereem, granted he is just about half the size and uses his kicks a bit more liberally.
A nice, commanding performance and what we get to look forward to this weekend. Will Wiezlen make this his 19th professional knockout?Add a comment
Trust me, I know what most kickboxing fans like, and know that there are a few names that excite everyone. Names like Badr Hari, Daniel Ghita and Gokhan Saki. Well, one of them was in action this weekend and it happened to include a return from a rather major hand injury. Gokhan Saki made his return to action at the GLORY World Series Second Round where he dismantled Wendell Roche for three rounds.
Our friends at MixFight.nl were there to document the action and there is a great thread up there with photos from th event, so while we can't find full results for the event, we do have dozens of close ups of Bas Rutten in a suit. [source]
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Last week's question: Is Giorgio Petrosyan the #1 fighter in the world in any combat sport? The results surprised me a bit...
39% - No way
35% - Yes!
26% - Close, but not quite there
I didn't expect No way to be the winner here, though it was close. I am curious who people think is so clearly ahead of him. GSP? Silva? Pacquiao? Mayweather?
This week: I've started a new series here at LiverKick.com discussing my journey through Muay Thai training and encouraging others to share their experiences as well. So, I am curious - do you train in any martial arts, whether it's Muay Thai, kickboxing, MMA, Jiu Jitsu, or anthing else?
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