Teacher Consultancy for Drum Kempo Ju Jitsu (diary entry)

single objective path2

26.01.2022 Wednesday morning’s first session was a teacher consultancy lesson with Drum Kempo Ju Jitsu. This excellent martial arts school in Ireland has drastically altered its syllabus to be more pragmatic in its approach, focusing the early grades on self-protection. I was booked to discuss ways to help advise on the way forward in their continued development. We went through the various current influences in the martial arts world and what was the best approach for recreational students who needed […]

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Single Leg Integration (diary entry)

single leg 1

24.01.2022 Hour seven of my couple’s course on the clinch continued with our work on the single-leg takedowns as we looked at their integration. This aspect was inspired by my clients, who were keen to cover the previous two techniques from a collar/elbow tie. Prior to this we warmed up with our usual wrestler-inspired routine, including footwork and sprawling as well more fluid break-falling and rolling. Sandwiched between the warm-up and technical training, we drilled the collar-ties and over-hook/under-hooks. The […]

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Kick Catching Begins (diary entry)

kick catch

20.01.2022 We began the fifth hour of the 10-hour course on Muay Thai with three rounds on the focus mitts. The first round looked at boxing, the second at countering kicks with punches and the third with kickboxing. Then we moved onto the technical section. Our focus was an introduction to catching kicks. I began this with training how to safely intercept round kicks to the body. Here I emphasised the importance of proper positioning and deflecting the kick at […]

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MMA Combinations 1 and 2 (diary entry)


18.01.2022 Tuesday night’s first session saw the merge of my Junior and Senior private lessons for some extra work on developing Mixed Martial Arts combinations. After a thorough warm-up of specific training exercises on all the rangs of MMA, we began the first of a series of eight combinations. I also used the opportunity to coach better pad-holding. The combinations were. 1. Jab/tap inside leg/rear overhand/double-leg takedown 2. Jab/cross to the lead leg/lead hook/double-leg takedown We then completed 6 x […]

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Meanwhile in the ’51 Lightweight Division (diary entry)

williams gatica

18.01.1951   Tonight we caught up with the lightweight division and I was fortunate enough to catch one of the last recorded matches of Ike Williams before we moved onto a new era under Jimmy Carter.   Ike Williams versus Jose Maria Gatica 05.01.1951   By this stage in his career, Ike Williams had a record of 115–15–4. He had defended the title three times since beating Beau Jack in 1948 and a total of five times since he took […]

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Two Single-Leg Takedowns (diary entry)

single leg 2

17.01.2022 Hour six of my client couple’s course on the clinch brought us onto our first low-line attacks. After a warm-up that included revision break-falls, we did some grip fighting and drilling. I layered in sweeps they previously touched upon during our Muay Thai clinch to introduce them to the low-line takedown work. The lesson then focused on the single-leg takedown. We began with a mid-level entry point, which is the most systamatic of the basic single-legs. It involves a […]

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Building Combinations & Counters (diary entry)


14.01.2022 This private client and his family have got the fourth hour of their third course with me. Friday night’s training was just with one family member, where we worked on building combinations and also counters. We were training in a fairly chilly garage, which is always good physical motivation to move, and warranted a thorough warm-up. Using time management principles in my coaching, the exercises were all sport specific and also an opportunity to single out punches, kicks, knee […]

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Back to the Wall (diary entry)

Against the Cage2

12.01.2022 Tonight’s junior MMA lesson continued where we last left off at: fighting off the cage wall. We trained switching sides whilst pinning with the shoulder, head and elbow as well as reversing the position. The lesson finished with 4 x 2 minute rounds of specific sparring, attacking and defending off the cage. Tonight’s senior submission grappling continued fighting from the half-guard. We looked at the electric chair sweep and then revised the knee-bar and foot-hold before attacking from the […]

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Kingham Hill Self-Defence New Term (diary entry)

Hook palm 2

12.01.2022 Due to the situation presented with exams at Kingham Hill, the self-defence activity numbers haven’t properly been established. Therefore, I was left with only a few pupils for the beginning of my sessions. Seeing as all three of them were previous pupils, I decided to focus on some new hard skill work. We looked at pre-emptive striking against two antagonists. After a warm-up, we discussed dealing with the dynamics of this situation. I explained the importance of maintaining the […]

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The New King (diary entry)

walcott marciano (2)

12.01.2022 Jersey Joe Walcott versus Rocky Marciano Undisputed World Heavyweight Championship 23.09.1952 After his second round knockout rematch with Gino Buovino Rocky Marciano knocked out Bernie Reynolds in round three and Harry Matthews in round two. Jersey Joe Walcott’s unanimous decision against Ezzard Charles was his first title defence before facing Marciano. Both these fighters had had careers of being the underdogs, but now it was accepted they were best two boxers to fight for the heavyweight crown and proven […]

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Upper-Body Grappling (diary entry)


10.01.2022 Reaching the fifth hour of my couple clients’ 10 hour course on the clinch, we put all the work we had been doing on upper-body grappling together. In essence, this type of grappling is a mixture of all forms of wrestling that do not allow holds, sweeps or throws below the waist. Greco-Roman is the most famous example, but most of the various different belt wrestling styles and many regional styles of folk wrestling in Europe and Asia. The […]

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More Family Muay Thai (diary entry)


08.01.2022 Saturday morning saw three private lessons in a row. I finished my client’s previous course of 10 lessons and we progressed to the 1.5 hour point of his new block. Senior Muay Thai First client had a good level of skill in western boxing basics. We did more extensive combination work, including an 11 punch boxing combination and four short Muay Thai combinations. Senior Muay Thai My primary client’s lesson looked at a lot of counter-striking work. I included […]

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More Junior Muay Thai (diary entry)

pad coaching

07.01.2022 Friday night’s lesson brought my client up to the 8.5 point of his course. Tonight I continued his son’s Muay Thai training. We based our training around 12 x 3 minute rounds. After yesterday’s assessment, I decided to focus more on establishing better defensive postures and movement. We began with establishing footwork. Then I layered immediate counter-work, training to attack and defend with jabs and crosses. This moved onto hooks and uppercuts before layering in teeps and round kicks […]

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Junior Muay Thai (diary entry)

coaching juniors 2

06.01.2022 My Thursday night session, bringing my client up to the 6.5 hour point, was divided into two junior lesson. The first lesson was with a primary school aged pupil and the second with a young adolescent. Both have had two week’s private lessons of Muay Thai in Thailand and my job was to continue their education over here. They have a good knowledge of the techniques, but there was still some foundational areas I needed to work on. Firstly, […]

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Half-Guard & Lockdown (diary entry)


05.01.2022 Wednesday night I continued my current Submission Grappling programme with my veteran client followed by a stretching routine. We focused on the half-guard tonight. This began with the classic half-guard work that marries up with the butterfly guard sweeps we used before the Christmas break. In short, we looked at framing and transitioning to the dog-fight position. From here the fighter has option to shoot for the sweep or to attack the back. This is dependent on whether the […]

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Family Muay Thai (diary entry)

shin block

04.01.2022 My client reached the 5.5 hour point of his course with a 1.5 hour lesson that included me teaching not only him but also his three children. They have all returned from a holiday in Thailand where they have been taking lessons in Muay Thai virtually every day. It was interesting to see how their technique had come on and what they had learned. I only had time to do a brief overview with them all, but we went […]

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