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"What is your role at Tiger Muay Thai, and how did you find yourself in that position?"

by Shaun Kober
March 14th 2022

I recorded this episode with Mark Rees for one of the projects he was working on, but thought I would also share it with my audience.

We cover:

  • My role at Tiger Muay Thai
  • More
what does it mean to live life to the fullest train to your potential and perform at your best, leave nothing on the table. That's a non negotiable is that I strive to be better every day because if I'm not on top of my game, how is anybody else going to follow me down the road? Keep demanding more of yourself to live up to that potential and to stay hungry. Training these programs. You know, when I look at the word training, I think of steps, baby steps to get somewhere that you want to be and that is basically your life journey. That's a mindset and itself, man, it's like, it's not just about, I know that for you, a lot of that's about the physical, but we're constantly in training, whether it's growing our skill sets, whether it's growing our physical bodies, whether it's growing our relationships, whatever and all of that's a training ground and that kind of goes back to the mindset that we just talked about. You underestimate yourself and you don't even start. But then once you start, you often surpass what you thought you could do perform at your best money. That's that's sort of what life is all about. You know, I don't have the knowledge and have the fitness, the healthy ambition and drive that no matter what comes along when that next phone call comes, I can just say yes, I don't have to worry, just go and do it.

Hey guys, this episode is a little bit different. I recorded this about 6 to 7 weeks ago where I sat down with Mark Reese and he actually interviewed me for one of the projects that he was working on now. Mark has previously been involved with Manchester City in the english Premier League, over in the UK as well as being involved now with Blackburn rovers. So he's been involved with professional sports for a long period of time. He spent a significant period out here in Thailand training out of Tiger muay thai and he came into a lot of my classes, was around the gym a lot and was good mates with one of the professional fighters that I was working within Kane, the danger moussa who have previously had on the podcast. So in this episode is gonna be a little bit different, is going to be Mark sitting down and asking me questions and having a discussion around what my role is at Tiger and some of the stuff that I'm doing with athletes out here enjoy. So hi guys, hope you're okay.

Um as promised, obviously in the next couple of weeks and months there's gonna be a range of different people who I'm going to be sitting down with, spending a little bit of time with finding out about the background what they do in sport and obviously, you know, there is people from professional footballers, athletes, fighters, coaches, psychologists, sports scientists and physiotherapists. So we're recovering a massive base of people who are a vital part, which people probably don't see behind the scenes for sportsmen, sports ladies and athletes. So this is codes, the main man. So obviously I've over in Thailand at the minute and predominantly I've been training at Tiger moutai, which is a massive performance center. It's just a hotbed of talent of some of the world's finest USC fighters, boxers, Umut fighters, it's unbelievable.

So, codes. Obviously you're working at Tiger at the minute. Could you tell me what your role is? What what's your role? Yes. So my role at Tiger Muay thai is the head strength and conditioning coach. I run the fitness department and I'm also building a performance institute for our sponsored five team so that we can give them the a period ice plan um to cover training, nutrition recovery so that they're in a healthy position all year round. So that when we do go into fight camp, we're in a position where we can actually put the pedal to the floor and get them, you know, operating under duress, under high stress whilst we're reducing calories, going through that weight cutting process ah and getting them into a good position to be able to perform on the biggest stages across, you know, multiple combat organizations across the globe. So obviously he's not from Thailand. So where are you from? And could you just give us a little bit of background too, your story of what, what's got you to the fantastic position you're in now.

Yeah, my name is Sean Cobra, I'm an Australian. I spent six years in the Australian army. Once I discharged from the army in 2012. After my last trip to Afghanistan, I did my personal training course and then transition became a strength conditioning coach. But the goal was always to work with professional athletes. 2013, I was traveling around the world. My now ex girlfriend. Um we spent about three weeks in Thailand. A week of that was actually training at Tiger Muay thai loved it here. Always said like this is the place I would love to come back to Live and work-based myself for a period of 6-12 months. Um continue traveling, did seven months of travel that year. At the end of that seven months. On the way back to Australia, came back, spent two weeks here, trained at Tiger, rode up, resumes, apply for jobs back in Australia landed, I got a job, started working in gym. And then the subsequent years I came back for a month to train, you know, work on my online business etc.

My girlfriend at the time would go to other countries. Um you know, doing yoga courses and things like that. And then 2017, I ended up breaking away from that relationship to come over base myself at Tiger where I had an intern contract I was working. So I was working for free for two months. I had no idea whether I was going to get off the job here, Whether I was going to continue traveling? What did the insulin period, What did that look like? Yes, so that was a two month intern contract where I was working for free. So I was required at the gym for you know a couple of hours each day um to assist classes, run warm ups and things like that. I was I was actually kind of busy with P. T. S. At the time, The gym was quite busy um and I was in a good position to be able to take P. T. S at the time. So um yeah, after a month of that intern contract, I got called into the boss's office, I walk from the boss's office and he said what's your plan? And I said well if you guys don't offer me a job in the next month then I'm going to go and work for, I'm going to ask for these guys for a job.

One of the competing Jim's down the road. If they don't give me a job, I'm going to go and ask these guys for a job, I want to live here. I want to base myself here. I love Thailand, I love the soy. Um I want to be involved here. If no one offers me a job here, I'm going to go and travel for six months around the world and then I'm gonna go and base myself in new Zealand and start over there. And so when you, did you enter is the person who mentors you still up tiger or they moved on now? Well I didn't actually have a mentor, you actually running sessions, I actually ended up running sessions. So as it turns out, the head coach at the time that had teamed me up with an internship, he was actually in the UK at the time, he had surgery on his hip and was going through the rehab process. So there was a standing head coach at the time and he had his own business as well, he was a yoga teacher and was off running retreats and things like that. So to be honest, like I didn't really have that much guidance or structure or anything, but you know, being ex military, you know, I'm pretty good at taking the initiative and making sure that I'm thinking on my feet and being flexible and adaptive and ship like that.

So, you know, I end up getting called in the boss's office and had that conversation and he goes, well, I would like to offer you a job. So you know, I went from a two month intern contractor being offered a full time job, the head coach came back a couple of months later um and informed the entire team that he had been offered a job working with rugby teams back in the UK and he was going to take it. So um you know, I spoke to the boss at the time, I was actually going through, I was just finishing up my probationary period, three month probationary period and I was like, what's the deal? Are you guys gonna be offering the head coaching position to someone at Tiger is going to be internal? Is it going to be um, external? And he said internal? And I was like, all right, cool, I would like to apply for the job. So um, you know, a number of the other coaches applied for the job as well. I wrote up a proposition of, you know what, I could provide the changes that I wanted to make my roles and responsibilities if I got offered the position and then I got offered the position. So I went from being an intern, whereas we're free to get in a full time contract to becoming the head strength munitions to my story, six months man, my story was I was playing football and I am, I lived in Manchester and I played a crew, so I moved up to crew, which was like 45 miles away.

So rather than doing the travel, I stayed up there and what basically happened was when I was staying up and I was getting bored as a kid board, I was probably a bit of a streetwise kid as well, so you know, I don't want to sit in the house all day and what I actually ended up doing was going back to the training grounds a little bit say probably like if some of the fighters are out here and young when they come into Tiger will do all the work during the day and then in the evening there like glancing the pants a little bit itchy. And what's the first thing they'll do is put the gloves back on, go back on the bag, but they're overtraining, overtraining causing injuries, you're not recovering. So then they basically threw me in the deep end and it was a little bit like yourself was right, well you can demonstrate, you can talk, go and find your own way of dealing with them, seven year old kids and it's it's a similar story and and you know, a lot of people have spoke to in sports who are involved in, it could be performance centers, football clubs, rugby clubs, basketball, netball, athletics is a lot of people tend to have that kind of scenario put on him and then it's either, you know, you step up or you don't and you have the ability to adapt and use your initiative in your surroundings.

It's massive and you know, I'm talking from, so I'm obviously actively involved in in coves sessions at the minute and he's killing me by the way, but but you know, the way you work, you're very meticulous, you're very methodical, I love the way you work on the programs and the programs work over a couple of weeks. You know, there's a, there's a lot of people in sport, you winning it for me and what they do is they can put session on what looks good but looking good and you know, it's about the long term progression progression. That's the whole reason. Exactly. That's why we train, right, it's for adaptation and this is what a lot of people forget when they are training. You know, they're going into the gym and they think more is better and I always come back to the dose response relationship right? Like I need to give my fighters enough work to elicit the response that we want, Okay, I provide the stimulus in the gym, then they need to go and recover. There's many different recovery tools that we need to use and you know, those recovery tool is gonna be different for every individual athlete, okay.

They need to look at nutrition, they need to look at sleep, they need to look at stress management. You know, maybe they need supplementation, maybe, you know, they need to get outside and spend a little bit more time in the sun. Maybe they need to do some mindfulness work where they actually can't sit on the beach by themselves without any distractions and like, you know, just have the sun on their face and wind in their hair and like listen to the waves rolling in jobs just to put it on you there, I think, you know, I've been in sport my whole life football seven days a week, 15 years back to back up and down the country traveling on the bus trying to train myself. Yeah, what happens is, you know, I think you've got to get to a place where you can be in a room be happy on your own. Mhm And if you can do that, you actually know the benefit of recovery. The issue of a lot of young talent or able individuals is they always think they have to be around people. You know, if you're happy in your mind, you understand the benefit of recovering the performance is going to be a lot more optimal.

Exactly yeah man, just to go back to entire into everything you just said there, You know, going back to what I was saying about the dose response relationship, right? Like if I've got a headache, I know that I take a bad headache to take to Panitan four, I know that's going to get rid of my headache right? I also know that if I take 10 Canadian for it's probably going to leave me in a pretty shitty position, it's the same thing with training, okay, training is good. However, if we're not recovering from it, if we're not adapting from our training now we're doing more okay, that dose response relationship is not there, you're actually taking away from your ability to recover adapt then perform. If you're not allowing that recovery and adaptation to take place. And this is where again, tying in with what you're saying about being able to sit in a room alone with your own thoughts, man like, you know, so many athletes in particular are very um sympathetic driven. So the autonomic nervous system is balanced between sympathetic state and the parasympathetic state.

This environment that we live in, puts us in a sympathetic state all the time. This is our stress response. Right? So training is a stress right now, stress is not necessarily a bad thing. People think stress is bad. We need to remove stress, we need to remove stress. That's incorrect stress is essential for adaptation. Okay, but we want just enough stress for the brain to go, hey, we only just dealt with that. We didn't deal with that. Very good. How can I deal with that better. Now, I, you know, for example, with let's use a very simple analogy right? When I'm training, I'm doing bodybuilding style, work on breaking the muscles down. Okay, now when I recover I get my food in focus on my sleep, stress management, etcetera, my brain goes, hey, I've torn these muscles down, I need to build them bigger stronger faster better so I can deal with that same stress next time. Okay, it doesn't matter what the adaptation is. Doesn't matter what the stimulus is. Okay, that adaptation still needs to occur if I go from bodybuilding to athletic performance to you know, footwork skills, agility, quickness center of gravity management muay thai boxing, mm a wrestling, whatever.

Like there's going to be a specific adaptation to the stimulus that you've provided. And you're only going to get that adaptation once you've recovered and adapted, Which is the whole point of training, Right. I think the bits, everything you're talking about no matter what sport you're in, these are the bits that people don't see. So these are the bits where, you know, this is doing extra, Doing extra is recovering. You can be the highest performer on in a cage and a ring on a pitch in a pool, whatever it is, but you need to be the highest performer recovering as well because if you are, you're always going to be an optimal and and and a big thing for me, you know, with my background was, you know, I've learned a lot about the mind and where the mind can take you and you know, from a negative to a positive and and how you build the mind and how quickly it changes as well, massively and consistency, discipline, discipline, you know, you know, you knowing what's right and wrong, but not being, you know, being being being shot over the line of, well, I shouldn't be doing that, but I'm going to do it.

You know, it's it's it's if you get that strength and that will power as an individual to be able to be on your own and to go, my friends are going out great restaurant to going shopping to the mall. You know, I'm going to see in England big culture is I'm going to see my friends in the pub. Yeah. That time on your feet that time, which you're not putting the right nutrition in your body the next day, it's marginal gains at the highest level. Now, this is the next, you know, the next thing I'm going to get into is obviously, you're dealing with some of the biggest and the best world champion may fighters and fighters, you know what walking the planet now, I've seen it in football, I always have to reference football because that's my that's my industry and that's my bag. But I've also seen in boxing, I've seen it in other sports, which friends and people have spoke with, and it's the marginal gains, its the 1% to 2%. And if there's an opportunity to get up 1% and 2% and you're not taking it, that could cost you a title, a championship.

You know? So the next question for me was, was, you know, um who are you working with now? What type of people you're working with? You're obviously working with a range of people, which for me, do you know what I've got so much respect for you because certain people come at least like I only work only work with these guys, but you know what if you only work with these guys, you lose a little bit of this bit, which could be a bit of just talking to people and seeing people just day to day people, you know, benefiting themselves and and trying to better the better the life they're living, you know, on the other side, you've got people who are going toe to toe the world's best, be the world's best. So yeah, dude, like that's a, it's such a, such a different dynamic, um, you know, training general population clients and training these professional athletes, world champions, you know, so I do train a number of, you know, high level professional fighters across multiple combat sports organizations, UFC one Championship bellator, to name a few.

Um you know, some of these athletes, man, like I'm having to pull them back because as we said before, they're just wanting to go, go, go, they're just trying to train more and more and more and like I've been educating them more on the recovery side of things and you know, I'm slowly getting through to them where they're making recovery in their own time more of a priority because now they're understanding when they walk into the gym and they recovered, I can push them a little bit harder when I can push them a little bit harder, then I provide a little bit more stimulus, they get more adaptation, right? So the more I can kind of put that recovery onto them, the more they understand that they need to focus on that, then we can shake a little bit harder given that ownership. Exactly, man, you know, so on the other side of the spectrum, sometimes when I'm working with the general population clients, you know, it's the opposite. I'm trying to push them, you know, or I'm trying to manage their stress levels because stress and stress man doesn't matter whether it's a training session, it doesn't matter whether, you know, you've got financial problems.

It doesn't matter if your partner's had an affair or um, you know, you've had a death in the family or whatever man like stress and stress. Again, there's a dose response relationship. If you've got minor, The kids are playing up at school or whatever. That's going to be a small, if it's, you know, if it's on a daily basis has been going on for a couple of weeks and it's gonna be a small stress, right? But if you if you find out that your partners of 10 years, 15 years, 20 years or whatever is having an affair, like that's a massive dose of stress. Right? So training stress as well. So when I'm talking to general population clients, I'm considering that they've got all of these other stresses in their daily life and if they are then going to the gym and their training really hard on top of that now they're just adding stress on top of stress, right? Rather if you've had a really stressful day at work where you've woken up late, you've slept through your line, we've caught every red light on the way to work. You're running late, your boss is looking over your shoulder. Um you know, you haven't, your nutrition hasn't been good, you're eating on the fly, um you know, your projects are overdue etcetera etcetera.

The last thing you wanna do is go to the gym and having yourself right, because now you've just added stress on top of that. Rather what you wanna do is drive the parasympathetic state where maybe you go to the gym, you've still got it scheduled in, keep that structure and get to the gym, go through some mobility work, do a little bit of light aerobic work, maybe listen to a podcast, listen to some nice relaxing music, do some breath work even better. Get outside, go for a walk along the esplanade, go down to the beach, get your feet in the sand, get the sun on your face, you know, get the wind in your hair, go for a swim etcetera etcetera. And then there's gonna be days where things are going good, everything's lining up, boom, boom, boom, boom, oh man, I'm on fire, I'm super productive today, my energy levels are high. I'm gonna get in the gym and get after it right, like we need to manage that is part of stress management and I mean that's something that I consider when I'm working with, it doesn't matter if I'm working with professional athletes or general population clients, it's always about finding that balance, man. I think what's key though is, you know, um, you know, I've trained, I've trained, you know, for years and years and I'd say the last couple of years because of the industry I've been in, my time has all been given to athletes or footballers.

So what's happened is is my trains took a back step now in my life and where I'm at as an individual, um, you know what one of the biggest things that I take joy and pride in training, you know, always ran always been in the gym, you know, being here with yourselves and Pete and holly and the gang, you know, the stuff you got, you can have the best. The one thing that I found is I've traveled around some of the biggest sporting organizations in the world. Yeah. And you can have a shell and you can have the nicest equipment you can't think could be shining, but it all comes down to people and I think, you know, with what you do there as an organization and obviously with your management of how you work your staff is, you know, the program is great, the way you guys deliver, It's fantastic. And for someone like me who's, you know, very experienced compared to some of the people in the room, it's refreshing to learn. So, so some days it might not be me coming in to go, You know what I'm doing the workout.

I'm coming in to pick, pick a bit a few gems out of your brain because I'm going to use them. And this is why, you know, now sitting down with you and actually getting you away and getting you in a quiet area. You know, it's nice to be able to just hear the passion who's out with you what you do. Mm hmm, learn a little bit more about your story because there's a lot of people in the room at times and I think what's important is, you know, and I see this in you and where you are. I think the best coaches and trainers aren't always the most affluent people because you love what you do, It should be an hour, you're there for an hour and a half, should be an hour. Well you've got an hour on the phone. So later on, you know, if you're managing an athlete or an individual. So what happens is, is you probably limited as in what you get back financially. But the thing is what what we do, I think the biggest part is it's it's, it's the love of the job and it's the love of the sport and it's the love of seeing people progress now with, where you're at, let's go to the other end of the spectrum of where you're at and I see the work you do, you know, I've come here, Kane is one of my good friends, you know, I've seen cane work for awhile and I've seen the way he's been working whilst he's been working a tiger and you know, I've seen slight changes in him, you know, big thing is around loading when you train, how hard you go, you don't always have to come off, you know, the floor, but you know what though, you could come off the floor and instead of your body being worked today, you might have just work this a little bit more or your techniques a bit more precise.

Exactly. So, you know, I think the way you're doing it mate, your knowledge is unbelievable for what you do, but come on and let's let's get to it. So obviously the main man and tell us the, I think this story is amazing because I've got similar relationships with people which have been built on respect and we've met through respecting what someone does. So tell us a story about Peter and what your relationship with Peter is. Yeah, man, So, peter yan, Obviously, as of recording this UFC, bantamweight interim champion, um ties into everything you just said about, you know, putting the work in behind the scenes where nobody's watching and you're building these relationships, you're building this, trust your building this report. So, you know, going back when I first came to Thailand probably about two months after I got the head coaching position, I just finished coaching a 9 30 class or standing at the front of the gym peter yard had been in class, he was riding past and he stopped and he pulls up and he looks at me and goes like a question when you said, right, and what was he actually riding, riding a scooter, he stopped and he goes coach, I want to work with you and I was like, oh, you know, what do you want to work on?

What are we working towards that? Who is his manager? Um, so he's, he's Siberian speaks Russian. Um, so when I had a chat with SIA whose manager also works at Tiger, sat down the next day and see how it goes. Look, this kid's just signed a contract with the UFC, um you know, he's got no money at the moment, he's he's building his reputation, etcetera. Are you willing to train him for free? And I was like, absolutely man, I'm coming from a military background, I'm coming from a rugby background, I've worked with a number of other athletes, but not, you know, in combat sports. So this is an opportunity for me to, you know, invest in my knowledge and experience training someone of that caliber at that high level who's working towards a UFC debut. So I started training him for free and there's a few people that were kind of like I shouldn't be doing that, you're devaluing, um you know our role, you're devaluing strength and conditioning etcetera, etcetera. And I was like, listen, that's one way to look at it, but the other way of looking at it is I don't have experience training these types of people right?

As a strength conditioning coach. I need to be able to train any athlete right? And take those principles and apply that to any athlete no matter who they are, what they, what they do, what their requirements are. So you know, I used that as an opportunity and we did a couple of fight camps together, um had obviously had a great debut, he went on to win a couple of fights, started making a name for himself, started making waves in the UFC and then I think it was after the third training session, um sorry, third fight camp that we did together in the UFC, he like went through the training session, he tried to pay me after a training session, I was like, no man, I don't want your money, it was like this is more valuable, this experience for me is more valuable than money, right? So, um you know, once we had a couple of fight camps together, then he was talking to his friends and then a lot of the other Russian guys were coming to me that was training them for free as well and I invested a lot of time, energy and effort training these guys, free men, knowing that I had a gap in my knowledge, I knew what I was doing as a strength conditioning coach, but I hadn't been able to apply that in the combat sports world, so that was an opportunity for me, right?

So you know, I spent a number of years doing that man, and then last year in july, I get what's that message from Peter Pan? Um so I wasn't part of his was part of his fight camp when he fought Jose Aldo for the bantamweight title um and we were training through the lockdown period, I was just one of these coaches um you know, when going back to the, when he tried to pay me, I was like, I don't want your money, you know, one day you will take me to one of your fights one day, like, you know, I'll be I'll be part of your crew that goes to your fight and watch you fight for a title um and you know, obviously he went and forth joseph elder and I wasn't part of that team that went over and I was a little bit, maybe I misread this situation, I was a little bit, not hurt from it, but I was kind of like a man like that was, you know, a lot of energy investment over the last couple of years and you know, maybe I should have taken that money when he offered it to me and then I thought to myself, you know what, like, that's not his fault, you know, maybe I misread the situation, the world is the way that it is right now, what can I do to show that, you know, I need to be a part of his team moving forward, how can I provide more value to him?

How can I be better at my job? So the next fight, he fought al jemaine sterling couldn't get to Thailand, it's very difficult to get over, There wasn't many people here at time, no training partners, jim was open and closed etcetera, you know, so he went to the US trained over, over in florida at american top team, johnny, the boxing coach went over with him and you know, I was kind of like, oh man, I'm not part of this fight camp, it's kind of hurt me a little bit, went through that process, he lost the fight through disqualification, I sent him a message about a week later, hey man, I'm really sorry to see that blah, blah, blah, you know, looking forward to seeing you again, some stage in the future. Um you know, all the best with everything and then july last year just been announced that he was fighting al jemaine sterling again for the rematch, late july, get a message, a coach, can you come to Russia? And I was like, yeah man, absolutely spoke to the boss that day. PTR wants me in Russia is going to be there for two months, I'll be representing Tiger, muay thai blah, blah, blah. Um, you know, so that was a massive, what's the word man?

Like? I was absolutely honored and so extremely grateful for that accolade. It's an accolade to be. So, you know, it was kind of, it was kind of cool for him for, for me to get that, get that message of like, hey, you weren't part of the last fight camp, value, value, value. And then he went, I need you as part of this fight camp. And I was like, and then what happened? What do you mean as in the fight? So you want to, sorry, is this the fight coming? You've been to Russia, You went to Russia. So I went to Russia, went to Russia and then the plan was to go to Russia and then I was going to come back to Thailand and then he invited me to go to Dubai with him. So I went to Dubai with him, his whole training team, his grappling coach, striking coach, training partners, etcetera. Um, a week before the fight, I'm on the phone to one of my friends from the UK who was flying over and she's like, where are you sitting in the crowd? I'm like, I don't know, Let me find out. Saya, his manager just flying in. I was like, where am I sitting? And he goes, you're in the corner man, I'm like, I'm like, I'm in the corner, I'm like, what the hell?

So, um yeah, that was that was really cool man, dude, to be honest, I had impostor syndrome, I was like, what am I doing in the corner? Like, I mean strengthening additional coach, he's Russian, his striking coaches is Russian, his grappling coaches, Russian, his other corner, men's Russian, his training partners of Russian, I speak english, what am I going to do? What am I providing in the corner? You know, what's really important here though, is like, you know, um I've got relationships with people in England who high profile players, male and female. Now I've done some of these people since they were six now there are some of the biggest players in the world, they're playing at the highest level, you know, and I always get the conversations, can you get me this introduction? Can you get me this? Can you get me that? Why don't we do this? Why don't you do that? Why don't you be an agent? Why don't you want to go, look, I've got too much respect between us to monetize their relationships. Now, life isn't just about money.

So going back to your situation of somebody who you don't even know really well, so someone being in your class recognize and you've got skills up, so then someone coming in your class regularly going, this is benefiting me. So then standing outside and going one day I need you to train me more individually because I think you can improve me as an individual then two, then maybe in your head go or I thought I would have gone to that. So then one day it always comes back around and you know, I think the thing is with you is you're such a good person, your feet firmly on the ground, you know, certain people to get a badge on the chest. You know, I see fighters and then they've got USC and the proud, it's great, you know, but I also see some of the best athletes in the world and they'll have odd socks on and they'll, you know, they've got a T shirt or holding there are some of the most and you know, the fingers with Petey and I think that's him and, and what you tend to find is with the top athletes, they have people with a similar mindset around them of, you know, we're here to work and put the work in, well, hey, we're good people and you know, doing what you do.

And that story there that is like a story I always tell is you have to invest in yourself and investing in yourself. There's too many people in society at the minute. You do something worth my money. Well, hang on, do you really want to get there? Do you really want to get better? We'll hang on, you get an opportunity to come. But if you ask me you can come more but I'm not asking you to come now. If if if that becomes a passion you know that you have to invest your time and you have to go above and beyond to be the best you can be to help people be the best they can be. And there's so many people in this society which they want something for nothing. People want that instant gratification. They want all your knowledge at once. They're not willing to, they're not willing to spend that time to build those relationships and build that trust, build that report and show value, provide value for long periods of time and you know this is a thing like this was, it was such an amazing feeling to one be invited to Russia to then be invited to Dubai and then three be told that I was in the corner man and straight away like I am you know went down to the beach with rotten Dubai marina, went down the beach and you know I was down there with the boys and I was like I went up to Peter and I shook his hand, I was like hey brother, thank you very much.

Like you just told me that I'm part of the corner and like I'm I'm very grateful and I appreciate the you know the trust that you have in me but what do you want me to do? And he just looks at me and he goes, puts his hand on my shoulder and goes coach, you control situation and I just laughed at him. I was like okay bro. So then I went back to soy and I was like, hey man, I spoke to, I spoke to john and this is what happened. This is what he said and I'm like, you know, what do you want me to do? What is my role? And he goes, you don't have a role. He wants you in the corner because of who you are and your presence. I'll tell you a story, a true story. So I'm at a game with Man City's women right? So our team of people, me as a technical coach, the manager, you've got someone who did analysis, who video the game and feed it back live whilst the game's going on a physio. The doctor, sports scientist, Yeah, strong conditioning coach, sports scientists, strong condition coaching and quite crossed over.

So you know, the sports scientists will do the warm up pre activate, getting warm, you know, fire everything up And then once obviously you're up and running a lot of people are going to do my job. Well actually sports scientist should be there the whole time because you know why like it sounds crazy this but but me going, he's grafting, he needs to drink more recognizing that's a bottle of water. Yeah, that's not just me giving you a bottle of water that's from an educated view of of, you know, going through your experience, that's your analysis of that situation. He needs to drink now, and you've probably seen that guy walk in and he's dragging his heels and his head's down. You're like, there's something going on here, body language, the way they move, you know, little things now for you on that day, you know, and this is what I'm saying, is it could be like you gave him bottled water twice, lost twice, which he might have not had that bottle of water. It's marginal gains. Do you know what I mean?

And, you know, everybody has a value and what you find is with with with people at the top, especially athletes, the circles are tight now. Listen, we all go through ship. So you've got the training, you've got your life. Yeah. But what happens is when you show that commitment, when you show that commitment, um I think it's really important that at the end of the day, it's okay. Yes, I think what's really important is is that people buy into you buying to you as a human being, they buy into you for what you bring knowledge experience. And also, you know, keep it for me is it's not about a lot of people in sport. I thought about a played or being an athlete in that industry now because you've not been in that industry doesn't mean you're gonna be less effective or less knowledgeable because sometimes if you've got the capability to take that information on board and you're a good learner and you commit to learn, you can pick things up fast and from your over experiences, you'll recognize things and see things which people don't see.

100% man, 100%. And you know, that's kind of how I think of it. Like when again, when I'm going back to, when I first arrived, I first became head coach, you know, a lot of the fighters, they didn't want to train with me because I didn't have any experience in the combat sports world, you know, coming from a military background, rugby background. However, there was a couple of fighters that did give me an opportunity, peter young being one of them, right? So, um you know, over the years I have been learning have been going to classes, I have been taking private sessions, presumed to do to boxing etcetera. Um and you know, build some consistency in that because I need to understand how these guys are moving, I need to understand what they're feeling when they're going through these sessions. But in saying that, you know, like I've got so many skills from my previous history that a lot of other people won't have being a sniper in the military man, my eyes are very well attuned to pick up on anything that's out of the small detail man, my new details.

So my ability to analyze someone's movement and see where they're breaking down, see where they're leaking force through the energy transfer process. I can see where they're breaking down, man. Alright, there's instability here. There is some restriction here. What are our drills that we need to do to address that? This person is burning out a lot. They're producing high amounts of force, they're leaking a lot of energy. We don't need to do more conditioning work. We need to get them to start, you know, if you're if you're in a boat that's got a couple of holes in it, I don't just bail faster. I don't have to start plugging those holes. And that's what I'm doing. A lot of these fighters, man is to conserve the energies, I'm plugging these holes right? They've got a lot of instabilities. They've got a lot of these, they've been doing the same thing for so long, so many years. They've created these movement patterns, dysfunctions and muscular imbalances, which then pull the joints into poor positions and exactly man, which then causes issues cause injuries in the future reduces their range of movement there, performance etcetera, etcetera.

So, you know, a lot of the stuff that I'm doing with my sponsor fighting at the moment is simply plugging those holes, man. Once I plug those holes, then we can build their strength, then we can build their power, then we can build their speed, their endurance, their conditioning etcetera. So when, when you, when you get an athlete, you know, I've worked on a lot of obviously movement and agility stuff because for me in the sport that I have predominantly been in, there's an object what you have to manipulate. Yeah, now your body has to move around that object, which is the war. Now obviously your your target a refocusing on the majority of the time in M. M. A. Johns the majority and your legs because it's striking now, keep it for me is is, you know, efficiency, efficiency, efficiency, efficiency, find the quickest and the fastest way to solve the outcome of what you want now with with the biggest reward and and what happens is is, you know, in the gym, when I'm looking at the gym, you've got young athletes, you've got senior athletes, 23 your nose, your man today, you know what I mean?

Um you've got peter Jan, you know, you've got marlin Morales in a minute, you know, experienced people. Now the one thing what I love is, and I think the one thing which I'm sure you work the same way as me is these people sober minded now, unfortunately because you've not met them since day one, they carry them habits. The bodies are probably not stuck as in the way they move and the and the way they react to situations, but you can adapt it, but it takes time and effort and belief and you know, I think the biggest thing is to gain that respect and how you get that respect, how you conduct yourself, how you deliver it, ship it, that's how you word it, the timing of it. Is he in a good mood? Is he right? Has he got it going at home? Has just been told he's not in the U. S. C. You know, you've got all these factors to take into place and you know, I think what you do really well in there is I see, I see the way you, you know, you use your energy as in some days, command command, come on, come on, come on.

Other days, whoa, slow down, slow down, think, think, think, think, you know, and I think that's a massive thing that's delivery, you know, it's just, it's reading the room, man. I mean, as a coach, there's so many um, cues that were looking for right now, you know, everything I do is an assessment. How's my fighter walking into the room, how they're walking into the gym? What's their body language? Like one of my girls this morning, I like, I had my sponsored 5, 10 this morning, Everyone was like, got in early building that culture the first time we ran the first couple of weeks, we ran the session, you know, the guys are rocking in 5, 10 minutes later and I was like, listen, I'm like, I'm not getting paid to be here, I'm giving you guys my time for free, You either respect that time or I won't bother running these training sessions, you know? So I had to set the stand straight away because if I allowed that to continue happening, then that's the standard that I was accepting and you know, no one's been late since. So anyway, everyone rocks up early this morning, you know, everyone's kind of mobilizing doing their own thing, having conversation, catching up.

One of the girls walks in, just walks past, everyone heads down, dragging their heels and I was like, hey, d how's it going? Looks over gives me a smile, sits down, starts doing a thing, and I was like, I walked over to her and just like, sat down next and I was like, what's going on? And she's like, what do you mean? It was like, don't flirt with me. I know there's something going on, like I can tell by your body language like, what's up, get it off your chest. And she's like, oh, you know, I had a fight coming up um some people have made decisions about not fighting this person because they didn't think I was ready for it and um you know, blah, blah, blah, blah. And I was like, listen, do you really think that's the case? Do you think your coaches are conspiring against you and they don't think you're ready for that fight, or do you think your coaches have your best interests at heart and there not necessarily protecting you, but this is your debut, right? They want to get off to a winning start. So maybe, you know, we'll give you a little bit longer to prepare um you know, a little bit more time working with your strength conditioning coach, working with, you know, you're striking coaches or your grappling coaches making the transition from karate to M.

M. A. And you know, we get a change of partner change of opponent so that we can get you off to a winning start. Do you think that that's maybe why your coaches have made that decision? Oh yeah, maybe. Alright, cool. How long you've been sitting on this for a couple of days? Has it affected your mood pretty badly, blah, blah, blah. All right, well, is that in your control if there was a change of opponent? If that person is to experience if they've got a good record label, but is any of that in your control? No, I was like, what's in your control? And she's like this training session right now? I was like, alright, cool. Let's focus on that. Let's focus on this training session. Let's focus on 25 February, making sure that you're in the best shape possible, you know, mentally and physically going into this fight so that you can kick off your mm a career with a winning start, right? You've got all these things that you're giving energy and attention to, that's outside of your influence, right? All you can do is focus your energy and attention on the things that are inside your influence. And if you're not focusing on those things, then you're wasting your energy unnecessarily, which is taking away from other things that you could be spending energy on.

There is a true story. So when, when, when I was at city, we we we moved into this hundreds of millions of pounds, brand new state of the art, best of the best training ground and the players used to drive in. So you have big gates, massive car parked cars full of all different types of cars. Unbelievable. Right, blessed the girls because they're just getting the contracts. They're coming in on scooters, pedal bikes, you know what the good girls, You know what I mean? But but you know, one thing what I used to do is, which is a little bit different. Obviously the fighters are coming in and they're already in their gear ready to trade. Whereas where we want to come in, dude, dude, have the breakfast there, they would have get changed, spend a lot more time, there's the team environment and also Covid and everything else, which, which plays a massive part in sport. You know, there's so many things what changed, which are a bonus for me, which are positives and negatives with it psychologically. But the bit was what I always used to do was three months a week because I used to sit on deception so they'll come in and you'd have to sign in now.

Me being me. Obviously you can't even understand me half the time anyway. But what I'm saying is he's like I would always try and have to crack with him. You know what I mean? And yeah, straightaway because because if they're awake you gotta laugh back. Is there something going on? You don't get a laugh? And the other bit was I always looked at their eyes and your eyes no matter you can put makeup on, you can be wearing the bright skin in the world only on Saturdays alright. But what I'm saying is your eyes don't like and I used to always make a beeline for you. Okay? Yeah and I'll be talking I'll be asking. And that little thing what I did all the time was I could plan the session but because they would have the breakfast, I walked back in and go we might need to change this up a little bit today of course as an intensity or you know what let's just let it be let's just let it get through today. You know. And I think that's so important. Reading people Before they turn when the session starts at nine Til 10 They're an athlete.

24 7. Yeah, but the bit is the human being as well and some people don't have that line mate. Some people don't have that understanding because there's an accolade, there's a trophy, There's a title, It's a business man. It's a business and I think what's important is it's a business. But then people won't want to work with you unless you've got that understanding and they've got that trust of, I've got your back. You have to be honest, you have to tell me the truth. You know, you have to tell me where you're at respectfully, you know, and it's about being constructive. When we talk constructive, there's nothing wrong with disagreeing or questioning, but but you know, it's about the long term now, the long term for a fighter could be eight weeks. So you're not gonna go head to toe on week one when you started camp, it's about the long term and they could be bouncing around to you and going, I feel great, I could train again and again. But guess what? You've got tomorrow.

Guess what? You've got Wednesday then thursday, then friday. So you know, this level you've got to maintain it. That's something I always say, man, that's a great point. Like I bring that exact point up all the time. Like monday Tuesday. I'm feeling good. I want to do more coach. I want to do more, hey, you've got aspiring this afternoon or you've got wrestling this afternoon, You've got BJ whatever. Like, you know, when do you drive your car until it's out of fuel. You don't, why would you do that with that? But yeah man, absolutely. I think the human being, first element has to be understood. It has to be respected, right? Like because you know, if you want to get the most out of your athlete, you need to understand your athletes and that means understanding what makes them tick means understanding what their personal life is like. To some extent, you don't need to go diving into that in too much detail, but you need to know enough about, you know, what's going on in their life and how that may potentially affect their ability at training and the ability to perform on the pitch or in the cage on the mats or in the ring or whatever it might be.

I've seen, I've seen some people, you know, in different sports, like it could be boxes, for instance, in the training, they've got a fight coming up and going hard, hard, hard and you know, they're driven on what they want to achieve and obviously they want to win the next fight where it's a title or an opportunity to win a title could be a footballer and you've got a big game coming up. And what happens is it's not just a physical output, what it's the psychological bit, which is massive and for me, I think, you know, as a human being, being involved at the level I was and the pressure is what we're involved on the staff, never mind the players we were under pressure is also knowing when to go. You know these would be so relieved if I said what's up now saying You've got coming at 12:00. Yeah. Oh dude 100 coming at you know what coming up for you know, I'll tell you what, yeah but that little bit of information what comes through on their phone, they go, you know what and all of a sudden a bad day turns into a good day and every now and again I think no matter who you are in your life you need that and in sport and when you know you're seeing the same four walls day in and day out, I did that 15 years, the same four walls same people, you've got a little bit of varieties and people come and go some people there all the time which is great because you get to meet more people but it's hard to get around everyone but you know going back to what you do and the way you do it, you know, I think what's exceptional mate is as a coach and as a person and as someone who manages a group of people who work in the performance centers, you know you can work with Janet who's had a hard time just come over here to train and make yourself and self esteem grow.

But then you've also got peter yan who's fighting to retain one of the biggest titles in the U. S. C. And I think what's really important is for me was when I was coaching at this level. I still wanted to work with the kids at this level. You know why? Because different types of conversations different ways of talking the energy you get back because the people who are coming to change their lives, they've got enthusiasm, someone who's doing it day in and out as a job every now and again it can be Groundhog Day. So you know I think it's a real skill set mate and this is why I wanted to talk to you, I want to tap into you a little bit and see how you think and obviously I've got to know you quite well the time here and you know thank you for sharing your experiences with ALs and thank you very much for the invite and for the conversation And you know as much as hopefully I've passed a few things over, I've learned a hell of a lot from you. I've still got 10 days yet so don't worry but still open but thank you for your time.

I really appreciate it and keep doing what you're doing mate. You you're making noises you know and I think sometimes when you're working I think it's when you work so hard every now and again for someone to actually tell you where you're at. You know just gives you that little bit more and I think you need that. And I think from my point of view from Kane and a few of our friends who were just training that you know, it's amazing what goes on and well done. Well done. Thank you man, I appreciate that. This episode was brought to you by Swiss eight, which is a proactive mental health program designed by veterans initially for veterans that has been pushed out to the wider community that allows you to structure in and schedule their eight pillars of health and wellness, including nutrition, sleep, time management, discipline fitness, personal growth, mindfulness and minimalism. This episode was also brought to you by be spunky, which is a male hormone optimization supplement that I've been taking for about a year and a half and I absolutely rate it is a TJ listed nutraceutical, meaning that it's made from all organic produce to help you manage and optimize your stress levels, which in turn increases your ability to improve testosterone production levels naturally.

User code codes 10 at checkout for your 10% discount all of those links will be in the show notes, if you've got some benefit from this episode, please make sure you pass it off to your friends and family. I'd appreciate any shares on social media platforms. If you tag me or if you share it to your stories, make sure you tag me so I can share that as well. Any five star ratings and reviews are much appreciated, much loved guys peace.

"What is your role at Tiger Muay Thai, and how did you find yourself in that position?"
"What is your role at Tiger Muay Thai, and how did you find yourself in that position?"
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