Sunday, April 29, 2012

Fedor "The Last Emperor" Emelianenko

Just had to share this. Spotted this on my twitter feed from and it is just too amazing. Well done video and really showcases Fedor's career in an epic manner. What is most striking about Fedor is not his obviously elite level fighting skills but his mindset. It is an amazing fighter's mindset.

"Years ago we hardly had anything to eat. Now I earn more money and I see every opponent as a man that tries to put me back to that poorer period. That man has to be eliminated." - Fedor Emelianenko

words of a driven man

Friday, April 27, 2012

Greg Jackson Clinic

Came across this video recently. One of the big names in MMA coaching. Loved hearing the insight that he has into the omoplata but even more interesting is his insight into ground and pound. Something that looks so simple as punching downwards can actually have that level of sophistication and technique to it. Cool video.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

You know you're addicted to BJJ...

When you go to sleep and the whole night you dream of nothing but landing flying armbars.
True story. The night before my exam and I'm studying myself into unconsciousness but when I wake up in the morning all I can recall is that I had a dream about doing flying armbars.

So when I got home from my exams I naturally went online to look at flying armbars and lo and behold I find a video of Shinya Aoki. This video is special though, it has SUBS. I've seen many Shinya Aoki tutorial videos but this is the first one that I've seen that is subbed. I really wish more people would go and sub the Japanese BJJ tutorial videos, I really really want to know what they are teaching.

Anyway, here is the video. Enjoy the high-flying action. BOOM!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Shinya Aoki vs Eddie Alvarez rematch at Bellator 66

Ahhhh. Sadly I did not get to see the result I wanted. Eddie defeated Shinya in the first round. Even so, I'm still going to ardently support Shinya. I have many reasons to support him.

Firstly, he is Japanese and I really believe we need more Asians fighting in big mma events especially UFC.

Secondly, he is one of the most exciting fighters I have seen. People may say that ground game is boring and that striking is more exciting. To them I say, he is the master of FLYING SUBMISSIONS with emphasis on the flying. Furthermore I love the way he is never afraid to pop-on a rare submission such as the MOUNTED gogoplata. So impressive was that submission that people have been calling it the Aoki-plata.

Thirdly, he is training and teaching at Evolve MMA and since I've been taking lessons there I feel an attachment to every fighter who trains out of Evolve.

You can watch the video of the fight here.

Since I couldn't watch the fight due to my exams at the time, I could only go online and read about it after coming out of the exam hall. Most of the news simply stated the result that Aoki got hit by a punch in the first round and lost by TKO to punches on the ground. However, I also saw some posts on forums about the fight. A lot of people are dissing Aoki now because he lost to Eddie in this rematch. Many are saying that Aoki is over-rated and that he'll never survive in the UFC. My reply is this, one fight does not make a fighter. Essentially MMA is one complicated chess / rock-scissors-paper game. "If I throw this move and you throw the counter you could win but otherwise I win" kind of situation is pretty common from what I've seen. So basing your judgement of Shinya on just this one fight is so ridiculous. There are many big UFC names that have shock upset losses but I don't see the same kind of hate on them. Looking at Shinya's entire career, anybody who can say he is a lousy fighter is simply delusional. Even in the light of his latest loss, I still believe Shinya is one of the best lightweight fighters and will definitely prove this in time to come.


Friday, April 20, 2012

Shinya Aoki the Baka survivor!

So shinya is going to be fighting at bellator today. In a show of support and admiration I decided to buy his walkout shirt from Evolve. Check it out! Bad-ass!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Good stuff must share: Gracie Breakdowns

Thanks to the advent of the age of Information Technology (IT!!!) we can learn almost everything from the Internet. Specifically, thanks to Youtube we can get access to endless amounts of training videos for MMA and BJJ and Muay Thai. The problem with the IT age is that we are flooded with TOO MUCH. Too many videos and too many YouTube channels too many Blogs and we don't know which are the quality ones. So much time is wasted looking through and finding quality videos in the sea of average and mediocre ones.

So today I would like to recommend a YouTube channel that I really enjoy watching very much.


This Channel is one of the channels of the GracieAcademy. This channel is run by the two brothers of the Gracie family, Rener and Ryron Gracie. In this channel, the two BJJ masters look at the most exciting BJJ in UFC events and break them down for everyone to understand. The most interesting thing about this channel is that you get to see how BJJ applies in a real MMA fight and how things might have turned out differently in the actual fight. These two brothers give a very enlightening and technical insight into so many different techniques that really highlight important philosophies of BJJ. Super super recommended. Go check it out. The video that I linked above focuses on the body triangle. Loved the way they explained how to escape from it. Enjoy.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

My favourite MMA fighters...

So I'm taking a break from training this week for two reasons.

One: I have this old wrist injury that keeps acting up from time to time and restricts my wrist strength and flexibility. I've felt that it really hinders me from getting good grips and good chokes while doing BJJ. So today I went with my parents to visit some Chinese doctor who helped to treat it by "unjamming my nerves" in my left wrist. As unscientific as it sounds, my wrist really feels much better after the treatment. On top of the treatment, he also told me to cut down on protein and exercise for the time being. So... no working out for a while.

Two: My exams are fast approaching. So basically I'm going to avoid training in case I get some injury that prevents me from writing. Can't wait for exams to be over so I can train harder than ever. Excited!

So since I'm taking a break from training I decided to make this blog post about my favourite MMA fighters.

Personally, I love submissions. I really really love the way submissions are set up, how they work, how awesome they are when you can dominate your opponent with one. So it's no surprise that two of my favourite fighters are Shinya Aoki and Masakazu Imanari. Love the way they can just go hard for the submissions and destroy their opponents with it. Imanari recently just fought at the recent ONE FC in Singapore and his match was spectacularly entertaining. Very very short fight but super impressive.


I really wonder if that spectacular kick that missed and made him fall was a calculated move or just pure fast reaction. If it was a bait, I am super impressed in his confidence and trickery. If it was reaction time, I am just as impressed at how fast he can flip around and catch the leg that was trying to kick him. What speed and what technique. Imanari and Shinya are both very polarizing fighters. People either love them or utterly hate them. I am obviously a big fan of them but those who love to see spectacular striking are always criticizing them for being one-dimensional. Personally, I think it's' fine to be one-dimensional if you are so good in that dimension that bringing them into your world leads you to victory. Do what you're good at, makes great sense to me. Although I think Shinya has become much less one-dimensional lately after he joined Evolve and upped his striking game with Muay Thai. Just look at his latest fight...

Look at that striking! Who says he can't strike? I'm definitely not going to say that anytime soon. If his striking as really improved as much as it seems to have, Shinya is going to be one damn scary fighter. Scary to go to ground with him and scary to strike with him... how are you going to fight that? 

And these two fighters are also friends and former teammates from team Roken. Here's a picture of the two fighters together at ONE FC with Shinya in Imanari's corner and Imanari giving him a jumping high-five after defeating Kevin Belingon.


To finish this post up, here are some highlight videos of these two submission masters. Shinya the Tobikan Judan and Imanari the Ashikan Judan.


Monday, April 16, 2012

Monday Lesson

So I went for BJJ lessons this morning. As usual I went for the really early timing at 745 so that I can have the rest of the day to go to school for classes and other scholarly stuff. I'm pretty happy that I decided to go today because my usual instructor Zoro is back! He recently just fought in the One Fighting Championship in the main event and won convincingly with an awesome armbar. In the weeks leading up to the fight he, he stopped coming for the morning lesson and also in the weeks after the fight. So basically today was the first time that he came back to teach after his fight. Zoro is an exceptionally friendly teacher and the way he greets you before training starts just makes you feel happy to train and you can feel that he is happy to be teaching you. Today he was especially happy, undoubtedly from his recent win and also because everyone was congratulating him on his victory.

Friendly but deadly and efficient!

So this morning we learned a few things.

1. Blocking a hook and grabbing across behind the head for a hip throw
2. Sweep from guard (sit-up sweep? not sure what it's called)
3. Armbar from guard
4. Straight arm lock from guard

For the straight arm lock I thought I heard Zoro call it a Juji gatame but when I came home and checked youtube, all the juji gatame that I found were all armbars. The closest thing that I could find that looked like what I learned was the Hiza gatame.

I can't find videos that teach it exactly how Zoro taught it today but here is one that shows you how to pull-off an armbar from guard.

So it was basically the same move with the exception that we pull the arm across our body before going for the armbar. If the person resists the pull, we overcome by bridging rapidly whilst pulling it over.

Okay, so that's all from me today. I might try to find videos of the other techniques if I can.


Friday, April 13, 2012

It's evolving....!

Evolve MMA Singapore

Since I am currently attending lessons at Evolve MMA Singapore, I felt it would be useful to let people know about what Evolve is like and why I chose to attend Evolve out of the many MMA gyms already established in Singapore and the many more that are still sprouting up as MMA is becoming more popular. 

Training under Champions

First off, Evolve has a star-studded roster of instructors and fighters. It's a great feeling to know that you are training under the instruction of a world champion and if you come to Evolve to learn MMA you will definitely at one time or another be taught by a world champion. Just a look at the instructor wall at Pomo and you will see the words Mundials Champion and Lumpinee champion all over. In fact you will see Lumpinee champion next to words such as "two times" and "three times" and even "four times".

Location and Schedule

Secondly, Evolve has two branches, one at Pomo and one at Far East Square. Both are conveniently located in the heart of Singapore. There were some other gyms that I looked at in considering which to join but the locations were typically at extreme ends of the island or some place that I had no idea how to get to. Aside from location, Evolve also seems to have one of the best schedules for me. Evolve runs lessons very early in the morning. I really mean VERY early, like 6:45am kind of early. This is great for me because most of my classes start in the late morning or early afternoon so I have time to go to the gym in the morning and then head home to rest before heading off to school.


Learning something new is always slightly scary. Learning something as intense and physical as martial arts is especially intimidating. In this aspect, I found that Evolve had a very friendly and welcoming environment. Although the instructors are all so accomplished, they are not arrogant nor are they harsh. They greet everyone as they enter the gym and they are quick to praise you if you do well. Not only are the instructors friendly but the other gym members are all very friendly too. When I attended my first BJJ class, the other student who was my training partner was friendly and helped me learn the steps to the techniques. In terms of physical facilities, Evolve looks very well-maintained and professional. The mats are always constantly being cleaned by the cleaners after every lesson and the training equipment all looks to be in great condition. The toilets are also a pleasant surprise. They are so clean and modern-looking, I might say it's even better than some country clubs. Nice towels, nice showers. All in all, it's really good that you can enjoy a nice shower before going from the gym to work or school


The one downside I perceived from learning at Evolve is mainly that it is not cheap. I think I can safely say that Evolve is among the more expensive MMA gyms in Singapore. If you have a small budget then probably Evolve will not be so suitable to meet your budget. However, when I consider all the other things I mentioned earlier I still felt that the quality justifies the cost.


My experience at Evolve so far has been nothing but positive. I enjoy every lesson I go to and I feel that I am learning new things all the time. The quality and professionalism of how the gym is run is very impressive and although the price of membership is high but "you get what you pay for".

Thursday, April 12, 2012

First things first...


This is going to be a typical first blog post kind of post. Let's get it on! I'm a 24 year old (1988) Chinese Singaporean male who has recently started to venture into the world of MMA. I decided to chronicle my journey into this exciting world of martial arts and at the same time consolidate whatever useful resources I can find onto this blog.


As for my existing experience, I have learned Taekwondo and achieved a black belt level at the age of 16. Admittedly, rising in rank in Taekwondo seems much faster and relatively easier than the martial arts that I have started to learn recently. About a month ago (Feb 2012), I enrolled at Evolve Mixed Martial Arts located at Pomo together with my friend. So far I have attended both the Muay Thai lesson as well as the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) lesson and have thoroughly enjoyed both. The BJJ lessons especially appeal to me because I have never experienced this level of grappling and technique while learning Taekwondo and the complexity combined with strategy makes for very interesting lessons. After one month of training I had managed to achieve my first stripe at white belt for BJJ and the satisfaction has really gotten me addicted to BJJ.

Physical Fitness

I am an asthmatic. I have been since I was 5 years old but my asthma is relatively well-controlled so I have engaged in sports most of my life. Playing badminton in primary school and squash in my junior-college. During my national-service I managed to complete the 21.1km army half-marathon but I feel that my physical fitness has definitely fallen since then. I currently weigh 65kg and hope to bulk up through the MMA lessons at Evolve. Apart from Evolve, I have also recently signed up for the Sundown Marathon but only for the 10km distance. Don't want to overestimate myself. 


So what's up with this blog? Firstly it is going to be a fitness journal. I am going to blog my progress of my physical fitness. I believe it is only with regular and specific monitoring will I be able to make progress with improving my fitness. Secondly, I hope it can be useful to others who are thinking of picking up MMA. I hope I can give some insight into what it is like to learn the martial arts and also some preview into the gyms that I am a member of.