- A Beginner’s Guide to Muay Thai: Expecting the Unexpected
Everyone’s got their own reasons for getting fit. Some want to do it to decrease their increasing waistline. Others want to get into a healthier lifestyle. Still, others want to do it because they are looking for ways to protect themselves.
Of course, there has to be a reason to get into Muay Thai. After all, you’re investing time, effort, and a lot of pain. Here is what you should expect if you want to get into the sport and the ensuing grind.
1: You can get into it any time
Well, you are probably signing up for the first time, so expect the slow, painful grind at first. The conditioning exercises will surely be a challenge at first. They’re designed to give your body the chance to adjust, anyway, so you should embrace them. There’s no other way.
2: Review, review, review
If you want to seriously perfect your craft, you need to know how to do things properly. Watch videos on how you can make those kicks picture perfect. If you need to, you can also look at videos of past fights. There’s nothing like learning the proper form from athletes who’re dedicated to the sport.
3: You’ll suck, big time
In the first place, if it wasn’t so hard to get into Muay Thai, you’ll see a lot of people doing picturesque kicks and punches. Expect to look silly the first time you do it. While others take naturally to it, it only means that they’ve spent more time and effort honing their craft on the mitts and the pads.
4: Arrive early, leave very late
The most diligent student always gets the best things in life. When you want to get better in Muay Thai, you need to act like you’ll do anything to get it. Embrace the sport. Watch it in all its forms; train yourself even when you’re not in the gym and in no time, you’ll kick like a pro.
5: Embrace the pain
Every form of exercise always leaves you feeling sore and aching all over. You’ll expect the same in Muay Thai too. Since you’re basically using more of your feet, shin, and ankles, you will experience pain in these areas. You’ll have to prepare lots of ice and massage oil to get those bruises down.
6: Invest in quality
If you’re investing in Muay Thai full-time, you should not risk quantity for quality. It’s fine if you’re getting into it as a hobby, but even then, you’ll find yourself perfecting your craft. Ask around, see what everyone’s using. You can also look at reviews on the web for the best headgear, gloves, and mouth guard.
Everyone’s looking for a good exercise to get into at some point. If you want to get into Muay Thai, be ready. The decision to start kicking and punching doesn’t come lightly.
- A Beginner’s Guide to Boxing: Boxing as an Exercise
Exercise is always a good thing to get into. You’re honing your body to get used to exercise and you’re also getting better inside and out. Boxing is a good sport to get into as an exercise. Your body gets a full workout; while you’re punching, you’re conditioning your body to breathe. You’re also improving your muscles with every punch thrown.
The first step into boxing is to get hurt—you’ll get hurt a lot, even while wearing pads. If that doesn’t sound welcoming to you, know that in any sport, you’ll get hurt eventually.
Step 1: Select your gym
Choosing a boxing gym is crucial to your development, whether or not you’re doing it to progress. You can ask around—usually, the athletic associations of your city will have their number. If that’s not possible, you can also search the Web for gyms that offer boxing training. If you’re looking to exercise, you won’t need to get registered as a fighter with the local boxing authority.
Step 2: Make sure it’s within reach
If you’re living within striking distance of your gym, you won’t get tired of going to it. There’s no reason you won’t fail to make it to your scheduled training. As in real estate, the importance of place in boxing is true as well. If you live too far from your gym, there’s already a reason why you won’t reach it. Couple that reason with distance and you’ve got a deadly combination for failure to get into the mood.
Step 3: Train like there’s no tomorrow
You’ll have to get conditioned first. There are a lot of exercises that gyms offer people who want to get into the sport. Each of them follow after the same training that people received when they were starting; even professional athletes started with the same training you receive. You should love and memorize the training you receive if you want to get started with it.
Step 4: Embrace conditioning
Conditioning may look like it’s not worth anything at all, but it actually prepares your body for more strenuous training. You should learn to seriously consider conditioning if you want to improve in boxing. You can also do some home conditioning if you want—on off days, you can do shadow boxing and punching bag exercises even by your lonesome.
Step 5: Have respect for your coach
The most important thing in boxing is the student-coach relationship. Other professional boxers reached the pinnacle of success no doubt because of the training their coach imparted. You should listen to what your coach says—even if you’re only doing it for exercise purposes, your coach knows what’s best for you.
Boxing as a sport challenges you to rise up against all enemies and survive or triumph over their onslaught. Aside from getting fit, it can also teach you valuable skills you can use in your life.
- A Beginner’s Guide to Taekwondo: The Positive Benefits of this Martial Art
There are a lot of martial arts that originated from the Asian part of the planet. They certainly do know their thing—from Muay Thai and Karate, we move to Taekwondo. It is an ancient form of martial art that persisted to this day. It has fast strikes done with the use of your feet and legs as opposed to using your fists.
More than a fighting style, Taekwondo instills discipline as well as a respect for those who are your seniors in the sport. But that’s not all you can expect from this sport. Here’s how to get into it, if you’re looking for exercise through martial arts.
1|Start with an Oath
Here we get to the mental side of taekwondo. More than a martial art, taekwondo instills discipline in you. You are given an oath to recite, but basically, you swear to become a better part of society, not engage in any illicit activities, and be ready to serve and save people. It may or may not be in that order.
2| Always show the necessary respect
As it instills discipline, you are also required to respect those who have done the sport far longer than you have. You are required to call everyone with a respectable term. At all times and, more importantly, after sparring or the exercise, you are to treat everyone with respect due them.
3| Perseverance is key
When you take taekwondo, you’ll find yourself thinking of quitting more than often. The training is hard and the exercises can bruise you. However, if you manage to pull through, you’ll find yourself better for it. This is why you should not give up and stack up on perseverance.
4| Learning to defend
One practical reason to learning taekwondo is for self-defense. There are times when you might end up being in danger and taekwondo gives you the tools to fend for yourself. If this is not a reason to take taekwondo training seriously, it will be hard to get into it.
5| Getting your self-esteem up
You can also get a big boost of confidence when you get into martial arts like taekwondo. Find yourself overweight? Losing weight doing taekwondo is a great way of getting confidence back to you. You’ll also have a better time losing weight.
6| Better health for you
Losing weight, relieving stress, boosting confidence—you name it, martial arts like taekwondo gives it. Your over-all health is the winner when you’re doing martial arts like taekwondo. No wonder a lot of professionals are looking at them to ease up what negative things they accumulate from work.
Taekwondo instills discipline and gets you up on your feet. There’s no wonder why so many children—as well as adults—get into this martial art. What are your reasons for getting into taekwondo?
- Getting Fit with Martial Arts: If you want to get started…
Many of us want to get into martial arts for our own reasons. There are people who want to lose weight by going to this activity. There are others who are looking to shed their own inhibitions and instill discipline. Whatever degree of physical fitness you may have, martial arts is a good way of getting more benefits for you other than just fitness.
If you’re looking to get started, there are many things you should get ready for. Here are just a few of them—reasons which are behind your decision to get into this world.
You have to have a reason behind why you’re doing this. Taking up martial arts isn’t something you just do on a whim; either you’re doing it because you want to become healthy or you’re taking it up to defend yourself and increase your confidence. Know your reason and stick with it.
The Choice of Martial Art
You have to sort out which martial art you’re going to pursue. There are many them, believe it or not. It could depend on your body type—quick, speedy martial arts in muay thai or taekwondo may be perfect for you. Or you could go for strength type boxing or judo. The discipline you take up is up to you.
The Country of Origin
Traditionally, it’s Asia which has a lot of martial arts disciplines. It gave us taekwondo, judo, kendo, muay thai, and other lesser known yet lethally equal arts. However, it’s not the only countries with their own martial art. Brazil has jiu-jitsu while Europe perfected wrestling. It’s completely up to you to choose which martial art discipline to study.
Authenticity of the Expert
When you decide on which training you want to do, you’ll have to pick a coach. Pick one that has accreditation from whatever governing body oversees the discipline you want to study. You’ll feel more at ease knowing that the person teaching you really knows their craft.
Narrowing Down your Choice
When you finally decide on a discipline, know that you’re going to have to prepare if you find you don’t like what you’re doing. There are a lot of other disciplines you can take up out there. You just need to be completely decided on one martial art before you continue.
Being a Bad-Ass
Of course, you’re going to love to show what you’ve learned but you should take into context that this is not the main reason for your training. You could try going amateur if you’re taking martial arts seriously—otherwise, use it wisely and responsibly.
Martial arts instill discipline and teach you control and dedication. If you’re lacking in some of those thing, then you should definitely explore learning these.
- Mixed Supremacy: The Top Fighters from 2016 and 2017
Over the span of two years, UFC has grown even more. These fighters are well-versed in a lot of disciplines—hence, the term ‘mixed martial arts’. You should be armed in a versatile mix of martial arts disciplines when you face them as well, or you risk setting yourself up for failure.
Here are the best fighters from 2016 and 2017. They have worked their asses off and it’s paid off. There are some familiar names in this list—former and current champions as well as top challengers for the throne.
Michael Bisping (2016)
Bisping experienced a great start to his year on account of beating Anderson ‘The Spider’ Silva. As if that year wasn’t enough, he took the next fight—a battle against former conqueror Luke Rockhold—on short notice. Notice that we said ‘former’ because Bisping won the fight handily in the first round. He went on to defeat another former conqueror in Dan Henderson.
Conor McGregor (2016)
This fighter was certainly busy during this year. For a tune-up, he fought Nate Diaz as a replacement for his botched fight with Rafael Dos Anjos. He split the fight with Diaz; he came up with a loss the first time but avenged his defeat handily in their second meeting. He followed this up by defeating lightweight Eddie Alvarez en route to becoming the first multi-titled UFC fighter.
Dominick Cruz (2016)
The list of his comeback was against well-established foes. TJ Dillashaw, Urijah Faber, and Cody Garbrandt weren’t pushovers. However, Dillashaw relinquished the title Cruz once lost; Faber lost to him through unanimous decision; although he lost to Garbrandt, his year had already been good.
Cris Cyborg (2017)
Cyborg, one of the names long bandied about in the fight game, made her name soar higher in 2017. She faced off against Holly Holm and Tonya Evinger in rapid succession; she conquered Evinger handily, but wouldn’t stop there. She also dropped Holly Holm to successfully defend her title and win the title in the process.
Demetrious Johnson (2017)
The fighter also known as the ‘Mighty Mouse’ made waves during 2017. Already known as one of the best, he only added the names of Ray Borg and Wilson Reis to a long list of his victims on the way to the top. This ensures his place among the all-time list for best and successful defenses in the UFC.
Rafael Dos Anjos (2017)
Dos Anjos moved to welterweight to avenge his losses to Tony Ferguson and Eddie Alvarez. However, he managed to rewrite his career with big wins over Neil Magny and Robbie Lawler. These victories may have placed him in line to challenge for the title belt.
These fighters, through grit and determination, managed to get their titles. It only goes to show what focus and concentration will bring you, as long as you put enough time in it.
- Total Entertainment: Best Wrestling Matches You Need to Watch
Through the years, the World Wrestling Entertainment—known then as World Wrestling Federation but more commonly termed as WWE—has provided us with some thrilling matches. It stands when an organization has lasted as long as it had lasted. There is only so much space to relay all the matches in a single article.
Here are some of the best matches to have happened that you need to watch. This is for entertainment, sure, but it’s also a testament to human prowess and the drive to succeed.
Match: Bret Hart v. Shawn Michaels
Event: Wrestlemania XII – Iron Man match
Hart and Michaels have had a long time to foster a feud that is as old as the WWE itself. However, the defining moment of that feud was when they faced off for an ‘Iron Man’ match. The match was noted for the grit they both showed in that they battled to an hour-long draw. However, Shawn Michaels finally managed to win, fulfilling a ‘childhood’ dream he never knew was possible.
Match: CM Punk v. John Cena
Event: WWE Championship – Money in the Bank ‘11
Perhaps, it’s the rebel streak of Punk that stood high and mighty during this show. However, it was also notable because Cena faced off against CM Punk in his native Chicago. He faced off not only against Punk, but against an entirely hostile crowd. In the end, Cena also managed a little rebel in himself when he bade Mr. McMahon goodbye.
Match: The British Bulldog v. Bret Hart
Event: SummerSlam ’92 – Intercontinental Championship
While it served as the opener to an equally riveting match between The Ultimate Warrior and ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage, the Hart v. British Bulldog match featured a family in turmoil. With a family divided, it only served to heighten up the flavor of a match made in front of Davey Boy Smith’s hometown crowd.
Match: The Ultimate Warrior v. Macho Man Randy Savage
Event: Wrestlemania VII – Retirement Match
While this retirement match was everything but great for the one retiring, it was still classic because it was ahead of its time. Randy Savage awesomely pulled off five elbow drops before the Warrior retaliated with shoulder blocks. Never mind everything else—it was still a classic.
These matches only serve to put more emphasis on the ‘entertainment’ factor of wrestling. Still, they stand the test of time as matches that stand to show the determination of everyone involved.
- Top Ranked: The Best Boxers to Watch Out For
The world of boxing is truly unpredictable. One minute you’re at the top of the world; the next, you’re on your back, wondering what happened, while your opponent’s hands are raised in victory. This is the world of boxing. Either you’re on the top or you’re fighting to get to the top, wreaking havoc and wrecking along the way.
Speaking of getting to the top, here is a list of fighters who are making the long, slow grind. It’s only a matter of time before they, too, get a target painted on their back.
The dissolution of the Soviet Union has become boxing’s gain. From the more famous to the up-and-coming, boxing has seen fighters like Sergiy Derevyanchenko dominate the scene. One of the many boxers who came from the Olympics, Derevyanchenko fights out of Brooklyn, New York, and expected to make waves in his division.
At only 20 years old, all eyes are on this fighter to make some noise. Perhaps this is because of the way he turned in his match against Phillip Jackson Benson. He followed this up with a very skillful conquering of experienced Denis Douglin, turning in a TKO in the 10th.
Diego Dela Hoya
With a familiar name like Dela Hoya, you can’t go wrong. Diego will to fight under his cousin’s promotion. At 22 years old, he is still undefeated in his division, winning all 18 of his fights, 9 by way of knockout. He has also done some impressive work as an amateur and as a representative of his native Mexico.
Tyson Fury’s cousin makes it to this list simply because of his impressive credentials. Winning the gold medal as an Olympian fighting in the ’12 Youth World Championships was just a start. He has since been undefeated in each of his 20 fights, winning 10 by knockout. The only thing stopping him from going all the way is his health condition involving his skin.
Lubin is the type of boxer that true boxing fans love to follow. Turning professional at age 18, he has gone 17-0 since turning pro with 12 coming by way of knockout. He has also conquered Orlando Lora and Daniel Sandoval and fights alongside Canelo Alvarez, Jermell Charlo, and Erislandy Lara. Time will tell when he will cross paths with these superstars.
These five boxers don’t certainly represent boxing; they are the future of boxing. It seems it’s only a matter of time before they become the names to follow in the world of boxing.
- 25 is the Magic Number: MMA’s Up-and-Coming Superstars
More than any other sport, MMA stands out as the most unpredictable of all athletic endeavors involving martial arts. Mixed martial arts combines all the disciplines and it truly makes for very entertaining fights. The fighters here are considered to be the pinnacle of the respective niche—jacks of all trades, perhaps masters of one.
Barring their specialty in any one sport, here are the different fighters who are set to make names in the future. They are composed of both title-holders and up-and-comers.
Brandon “The Assassin Baby” Moreno
23 years old
He’s started his future as a flyweight, but Brandon Moreno could potentially go up in weights until even featherweight. Currently 13-3 and 2-0 in the UFC, he hasn’t tasted a loss in the last 4 years. Moreno is an especially talented submission artist; about 9 of his wins had come by way of submission.
23 years old
Borg made the noise in all his 10 fights in the UFC. Notwithstanding the way he’s missed making the weight, Borg has the skills to become an awesome fighter. However, if he’s forced to move up in weight, he won’t be as exciting. Let’s hope that won’t become the case.
Cody “No Love” Garbrandt
25 years old
Ranked no.5 on the fight list, Garbrandt has, so far, defeated rival Dominick Cruz to take the UFC bantamweight title. This came after he took down Thomas Almeida and Takeya Mizugaki after the other in rapid succession. He’s since been 10-0 in all his fights, and all this at only 25 years old.
25 years old
In spite of his loss to Garbrandt, you just can’t dispel his 21-1 record as a fluke. Almeida has a no-mercy style to his fight, winning against Albert Morales in exactly this fashion. Almeida can go far as a flyweight if he keeps his fighting style ongoing.
Kevin “Motor City Phenom” Lee
24 years old
To call out Conor McGregor takes on a lot of balls and Kevin, perhaps ready to take on the world, did exactly this after his win in McGregor’s native Ireland. While he isn’t undefeated, he’s bounced back from these losses in style. A wrestling specialist, Lee has always managed to win if he forces his specialty on his opponent.
24 years old
The 10-1 fighter has created noise by way of how he managed to overcome BJ Penn. The former champion was simple crushed by Rodriguez, who simply was too good even for a prime Penn. Continuing to do like he did in that fight, it’s only a matter of time if he managed to win a title.
It’s truly exciting in the UFC side of things because of the way these fighters hold themselves against competition. Let’s hope we continue to see them at their prime and, eventually, as champions.
- Not Y but When: MMA’s Best and Brightest Future Female Champions
When you hear the term “mixed martial arts”, you get the idea of perfectly chiseled specimens fighting their hearts out. However, as in any kind of sport, even MMA has opened its doors to women. The female side of the competition is just as fierce; the competitors are every bit as focused as their male counterparts.
Here is a list of the best female fighters out there. These are a versatile mix composed of both champions and challengers.
Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino
Cris “Cyborg” has always been in the discussion for best fighters in this list. However, the lack of competition in her division has not been a friend; she hasn’t been as active as she should be. Her last victory was an impressive one, however, disposing of Tonya Evinger via knockout to win the title.
Amanda “The Lioness” Nunes
Amanda Nunes’ resume includes a lot of high profile names: twice locking horns with Valentina Shevchenko and winning, she went on to face off against Shayna Baszler, Miesha Tate, Sara McMann, and Ronda Wousey. She even managed to win a belt in the process. Her glaring weakness, her stamina, wasn’t seen in her most recent bout against Shevchenko, indicating she managed to solve it somehow.
More known as a clinical striker, Jedrzejczyk seems to know the drill. Knowing that her tactics, by itself, won’t be enough to blow away the competition, she has added more tools to her arsenal; hence, she is more known for her striking than her grappling. Despite her loss to Rose Namajunas in November, she is still one of the best to ever fight in the game.
Valentina “Bullet” Shevchenko
Here is a testament to how volatile the fight game can become. Amanda Nunes won against her, true, but she was in line to fight Miesha Tate if she managed to won. However, she took the path less traveled—she fought Nunes again after victories against Julianna Pena and Holly Holm. She did lose again, though, but she still could take that belt in another time, another opponent, because of her skills.
Claudia “Claudinha” Gadelha
Claudia Gadelha has always been touted as a great fighter, even after her two losses to the same fighter—Joanna Jedrzejczyk. However, she has since created waves with her victory against rank-2 contender Karolina Kowalkiewicz. It’s an indication of how far she’s willing to go to get to the top of the rankings and to the belt.
There’s no sign how long they can keep their rankings and results. If there’s anything certain, though, it’s that these girls won’t give up the pursuit for excellence, no matter how long it may take.
- Kenta Kobashi’s Moments: The Times Kenta Put His Name on the Map
Kenta Kobashi of Japanese wrestling may be retired, but his career—all 25 years of it—gave him a lot of memories to relive. From the All-Japan Pro Wrestling stage to Pro Wrestling Noah, Kenta has logged in a few memorable matches.
Here are a few scenes worth re-watching from the consummate athlete—he also was an accomplished student of the sport of rugby, judo, and body-building.
(Tag Team) Kenta and Go Shiosaki v Kensuke Sasaki and Katsuhiko Nakajima
It is said that in the AJPW, tag team matches are no-sooner thrown around than they are seriously competed in. Props are given to this match because it featured a rookie and a veteran teaming up. Surely, Kobashi and Sasaki taught their young charges valuable things.
(Solo) Kenta v Stan Hansen
It was 1993 and the matches ran the gamut of young up-and-comers against veterans long in the game. Kenta faced off against Stan Hansen and the latter proved why he was in the game for too long. Leaving it all on the mat, Kobashi proved he had what it took to stay in the game.
(Solo) Kenta v Mitsuharu Misawa
Kenta and Misawa should arguably have had this match way before their 2003 meeting. They were slowing down when they met and fans think they should’ve met even when they were in the AJPW. However, this still had all the drama of a competition between men fighting during their prime.
(Solo) Kenta v “Dr. Death” Steve Williams
Kenta was a young and spry newcomer during 1993 and featured in many exciting matches when he showed potential. He showed this spark against Steve Williams. Kobashi managed to overcome despite Williams having him in some of the most terrifying suplexes ever seen in wrestling entertainment history.
(Solo) Kenta v Jun Akiyama
Kobashi faced off against Jun Akiyama in 2004, about a year added from his match with Misawa. It happened during his memorable GHC title defense run. Kenta also delivered one of the most memorable finishers of his career in it.
There you have it, the best matches from Kenta’s career. There will always be a few others that remain higher than these, but if we’re talking about Kenta Kobashi, surely there’s quite a few more than just five.