Casting my mind back a good few years ago now, I can remember a conversation I had with someone at an interclub once. The usual greetings had been made and we got talking about fighting. He asked me if I’d fought or if I wanted to. At the time I hadn’t started fighting and it was only my second interclub so for me, even stepping in a ring was a massive achievement. (Being honest it still is.) I can remember him saying that the hardest thing he found with Muay Thai was finding the aggression to take the fight to his opponent when he needed to.
At the time,I could see where he was coming from. It was only after that interclub, and several more after that did I really begin to realize that the fighter isn’t always in everyone straight away or if he or she is,they take time to develop. And as anyone knows that competes in any combat discipline, the training as well of course the fighting teaches you to leave Mr nice guy out the ring. It’s taken me learning some tough lessons in the ring to realize how important it is to be able to flick your on switch when you need to. I’m pleased to say these are lessons that I now simply class as experience, and what’s also refreshing for me is that the experience seems to be standing me in good stead.
So for the past few weeks it’s been good to have spent a lot of time focusing on the fight and the mentality you need to adopt when your in the ring. After all, when it comes down to it no one can fight that battle for you so I like to make sure that I have my mindset in place as well as my heart in place too. I’ve found that being a shorter fighter needs not only the courage to stay close and keep the pressure on but more importantly the aggression too, and sparring with people that I know will give me a hard time has always helped me a lot. I think that pressure testing yourself and making sure your out your comfort zone, is a good way to develop your Thai boxing ‘grr’ I was talking about a minute ago.
My current fight trainers (as well as my previous one) are very big on ensuring when your preparing for a fight you visualize your opponent when shadow boxing. We often have a light round or two of shadow followed by a round where we pick up the pace.This is something I’ve found that helps develop my focus and also helps that on switch to move to the right place. I’ve talked before about keeping it simple and this is something that is making more and more sense to me. I think I would rather spend time drilling techniques I know that I will use (this doesn’t mean only practicing what I’m good at, because how will you ever improve if you only work your strengths?) rather than so much that confusion sets in under pressure rather than focus.
Of course, I want to learn more and I want to do more but when I have a fight coming up I like to spend time working on simple effective attacks I can use with venom and intent under pressure, rather than again have so much to choose from that problems emerge. One of my trainers said this week it’s worth having around five combinations or attacks that you know you can rely on when you need them the most. I think developing a strong foundation can take you a long way when it comes to fighting, and it’s good fun learning more to add to it.
This year it’s good to have some very positive and exciting goals to aim for with fighting, and next weekend I’m stepping up again for a rematch at my gym’s show against Ferez from Eagles gym I fought 2 weeks ago in Cardiff. (if you missed it the first time round there’s a link in last week’s blog ) I know that it’s going to be tough but I feel ready and I’m looking forward to it. So next week, I’ll be training hard but taking the peddle off the gas a little to get all my energy ready for next Saturday. And of course I want the outcome to be a positive one. I thought I’d leave you this week with a video of one of my favourite fighters from Thailand, Pornsanae Sitmonchai fighting earlier this month. In the ring, He’s never a nice guy. Have a great weekend and as always.. I’ll see you on the road.