This is what I like about the grappling arts and the MMA game; making new friends with guys you’ve stepped into the ring or cage or stepped onto the mats for a grapple with, who for five minutes are your sworn enemy, turn into long lasting friends after the final bell rings out.Apologies for the lateness in the delivery of this report, all I can say is it’s been a hectic few weeks with seminars and competitions going on every week, it’s a hard job trying to keep up to task with all the reports and I kept on saying, ‘I’ll do this report tomorrow’ and then something else cropped up!
Grovelling apologies aside, I’ll crack on with the report; the seminar was arranged with lightning speed by Combat Base North East’s Steve Paynter, who seized a golden opportunity to arrange a seminar with Eddie Bravo, who was in town for the UFC 80 event at the Metro Arena in Newcastle on January 19th 2008.
The seminar was held at Phoenix Martial Arts Centre in Ouseburn Valley and given such a short time to arrange, over 60 people made it to the seminar, with students representing Dinky Ninjas, Dungeon fight team (Brasa), Combat Base Pontefract, Bolton and North East, Phoenix MMA and a host of other clubs who I never managed to track down, so apologies to clubs missed out.
Eddie took the students through his world famous half guard and rubber guard game and given the short time he had with the students, presented the class with mission control, New York, Chill Dogg, Zombie, Lockdown, T rex, Kung Fu, Dew Claw and Crack Head Control among a host of other funky named moves and broke the sequences down into separate sections and once demonstrated a few times by Eddie on Darren Currie, Eddie drilled the students into the techniques in a step by step fashion, rather than let the students struggle with the correct sequence of moves and make mistakes. This is where Eddie stands out from the crowd, in the way he teaches his techniques in this fashion, like a drill sergeant, together with funky names that over time, the students will memorise and from there will become second nature to them.
With the time Eddie had with the students, he was never going to be able to impart all his knowledge on two areas of his game, but he left enough material and tips and general training advice for all students to walk away with something practical and worthwhile to add to their arsenal and all too soon it was all over and after a quick round of photo’s, Eddie was whisked back to the Hilton Hotel, where I managed to hitch a ride and grab a quick interview with Eddie, which has since been posted at www.onthemat.com and www.lockflow.com.
One last thing about the weekend and that goes in the way of a large shout out to my very good friend Ian ‘The General’ Barnfather, whose hospitality is always second to none whenever I head up North.
I stayed over on the Friday night and stayed with Ian, a proud native of the mighty village of Stakeford and no sooner had we landed at his house, we headed up to the Lord Barrington for a few well earned pints and what should have been a few pints ended up with a few more pints in the Half Moon and back to the Barrington, where I was in the company of one of the sharpest card players around, who should have his own show in Vegas, a one Mick Molloy, what a character!! Shouts out too go to Harry Seddon, Mark Armstrong and ‘Sticky’ for their fine company and generosity that Friday evening, culminating in a midnight visit to the local takeaway for some ‘bait’ and then back to Ian’s to get my head down for the night, in readiness for the seminar and UFC event.
This is what I like about the grappling arts and the MMA game; making new friends with guys you’ve stepped into the ring or cage or stepped onto the mats for a grapple with, who for five minutes are your sworn enemy, turn into long lasting friends after the final bell rings out.
Be sure to check out www.thetwister.tv