Reality Based Stuff gets real!

We had Shihan Richard Norton in town again.  This time the Police Citizens Youth Clubs (PCYC) had brought him out here for a couple of seminars.  The Friday evening was BJJ at the Burwood PCYC arranged by the Manager, Gary Davies (who is also a Traditional Jiu Jitsu master) and Senior Constable Dave Geremia (student of mine).  It was an excellent seminar which included students from my BJJ school and Gary's Jiu Jitsu school. 

Saturday was Reality Based Self Defence at the Mount Druitt PCYC arranged by Senior Constable Julius Uru (also student of mine).  This is the roughest part of town and the PCYC has a tough job holding its ground   with youths in that area which showed at the seminar with people wanting to flex their muscles (including women)  so much so, the Boxing Coach went flat out at Richard to prove a point but ended up getting choked out; he is a lucky man, Richard's awesome strikes were not on the agenda.  It was as real as it gets.  This small group was not easy to convince and found it hard to understand and follow directions, mainly because of their already preconceived ideas about street defence.  Basically, they were missing the point of what was being taught at the seminar.  However, Richard finally won them over and now these people want him back!  Richard also went through some Kickboxing drills with me later that afternoon.

Sunday was at Shihan Adrian Ionita's school; first, it was an hour with kids and then a seminar, with seniors, on the Black Belt Complexes which literally blew everyone away especially when Richard started to speed up.  This was a good class withSeminar at Whitewolf Martial  Arts some very senior Black Belts in attendance who really appreciated what was being taught.  After that, Adrian invited us to a Chinese Restaurant before we headed off to the Airport.  It was a pleasure to meet Adrian who is a really great guy and a good martial artist.  

I really enjoyed the weekend having the opportunity to catch up and train with the 'Richard Norton', once again. 

The Kung Fu Kid

In China the movie's called the Kung Fu Kid because the story is set in China and the martial arts are Kung Fu (there is a bit of cultural controversy over that). Moving on – twenty two of us in total (students and family) went and saw the new Karate Kid movie together this morning.  Nobody had any complaints; it was quite an enjoyable movie and it was also a great day being together with students and families for that short time.  The movie is basically a remake of the original but at least the Karate Kid's master was played by Jackie Chan who is a real martial artist.  The Karate Kid, played by Jaden Smith who, unlike the original KK who didn't really know martial arts, actually is a martial artist.  Jaden Smith (Will Smith's son) and Jackie Chan make it real action packed. 

It was very entertaining and whilst it is all Hollywood the philosophy and reasons for training in the martial arts are all on the screen.  I particularly love the master-student relationship; maybe my age is catching up with me! I really like Jackie Chan in this movie and I realised it was because he played the part of a serious character which he has never done before.  I don't believe any of the critiques have picked up on this. 

This movie is especially great for the very young ones who may have not seen the original but although the story is predictable there are little twists and surprises.  Most important of all, what I got out of it, is seeing what my students and their families got out of it.

The Mario Sperry seminar

Last Monday night, I went to the Mario Sperry MMA seminar held at Rob Naumoski's gym.  I did one of Mr Sperry's seminars back in 1997 and I was surprised he recognised me when we shook hands; he must have a great memory.  I actually trained with one of his Black Belts for 3 months shortly after that.  Richard Norton was invited as a special guest who partnered up with me for the night.

   The legendary Mario Spe rry is a protégée of Carlson Gracie.  He was handed his black belt at the 1995 BJJ World Championships, where he won the heavyweight black belt division, defeating many of the sport's greatest legends.  His has a long history of victories including World Championship titles in MMA.  Those who have been around long enough would remember the first ever 'No Rules Contest' at the Sydney Convention Centre in 1997.  There were  no rules, no gloves, no rounds and the winner was determined by a knockout or submission.  Mr Sperry won this event with a prize of $50,000 which was very good money at the time.

Mario Sperry was a real gentleman and very knowledgeable.  It was a pleasure to train with one of the 'greats' in martial arts and with Richard Norton in the room,  it was a double treat for us all who were at the seminar.  Plenty of photos taken which all can be viewed on my wall in Facebook.

There’s Always Time for Coffee

 Richard forcing me to drink instant coffee!I just dropped my mate and trainer, Richard Norton, off at the International Airport earlier this evening.  He's off to NZ for a few seminars and, going by the comments on Facebook, his hosts are a little apprehensive (on the humorous side) because Richard's reputation in the martial arts precedes him.  Then he will back in Sydney for another week to complete his mission at Fox Studios.  The evenings will be free.

On Monday we will go and meet the famous UFC fighter, Mario Sperry, at Rob Naumoski's gym for a MMA seminar.  Tuesday, at my school for Kickboxing and BJJ.  Wednesday, at Richard Awad's full time centre and Thursday at Jordan Micakovski's full time school.

Before flying out, there was enough time for a cup of coffee.  I expressed my opinion that, as an Instructor, I also just need that time alone to experiment with, my selected senior students, the new things I'm learning.  It is the time I get to analyse the techniques so I have a better appreciation of them.  I thought about this over a cup of coffee and I guess if it didn't sound good, I have no doubt, Richard would've told me otherwise.  I can really go on about this but one cup of coffee is not enough!