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My Blog


Are Energy Drinks for You?

Posted on 17 August, 2013 at 14:15 Comments comments (403)
Are Energy Drinks for you?
Since 1997 when Red Bull was first introduced to the market,energy drinks have become a staple in America’s diet.  Red Bull, Monster, Rockstar, are just a fewthat you will see in the hands of Athletes, MMA Fighters, Trainers, Boxers,Adults, Teens and even pre-teens; look in the recycle bin of your localtraining facility and you will find several empty containers of energydrinks.  Energy drinks are consumed onthe drive to the gym to train, at the gym before training, during training andon the way home from training.  Parentswill buy their children energy drinks to give them “energy” before school,before soccer, baseball, football, gymnastics any type of physical activitywithout knowing the benefits or harm that energy drinks provide.
First you must understand what is in an energy drink.  They all have a variation of receipts, butthey still have common ingredients, such as caffeine, guarana (a South Americanplant extract that contains additional caffeine), sugar and amino acid taurine,ginseng and assorted vitamins. The Amino acid taurine, ginseng and otherassorted vitamins have little or no impact on a person’s energy level, so wheredoes the energy come from.  Sugar doesgive you energy, but along with that energy comes calories and along withcalories comes weight gain. 
Sodas and energy drinks both have sugar (real energy) andcaffeine.  Drinking an energy drink forenergy would be the same as drinking a soda before training; they both havesugar and caffeine.  What is thedifference between soda and an energy drink; the level of caffeine.  A soda has 71 milligrams in a 12oz drink(regulated by the FDA); an energy drink has between 50 and 500 milligrams ofcaffeine (which is not regulated by the FDA). Coffee has 100 milligrams of caffeine, so drinking an energy drink canbe compared to drinking 7 sodas or 5 cups of coffee.  Caffeine is a stimulant which means it canincrease awareness, concentration and give you the feeling of a burst ofenergy, but in excess it can cause  restlessness, irritability and difficultysleeping and an over dose of caffeine can reduce blood flow to the heart andcause heart palpitations.
Recently at ASG Training facility we had a female MMAfighter in her early 20’s who was experiencing chest pains and difficultbreathing, upon visiting the emergency room it was found that her bloodpressure was 180 and I do not remember the bottom reading.  Her heart was racing and she felt like it wasgoing to explode.  It was determined thather heart was racing do to an overdose of caffeine from her drinking 2 energydrinks before practice.   This is not our first experience of someonehaving very high blood pressure due to a caffeine overdose from drinking energydrinks.
So before you decide that you need the burst of energy froman energy drink realize that one drink is the same as drinking 7 sodas or 5cups of coffee.

Why is a Manager necessary for MMA Fighters and Boxers?

Posted on 18 June, 2013 at 19:04 Comments comments (73)
Why is a Manager necessary for MMA Fighters and Boxers?
When an amateur MMA Fighter or Boxer turns pro they havetheir Coach/Trainer in their corner, preparing the Fighter for their profighting debut, but who is behind the scene preparing the Fighter for the businessof being a professional Boxer or MMA Fighter? Often it is the Coach/Trainer who books the fight, negotiates thecontracts and everything else is left to the Fighter to take care of himself.
Academy of Striking and Grappling over the past 8 years hastaken many amateur and pro Boxers and MMA Fighters to compete in fights bothlocally and throughout the United States, each and every time a Fighter for ASGcompetes not only is the Coach/Trainer there, but the Manager is also thererepresenting the Fighters.  Just as it isthe Coaches/Trainers job to prepare the Fighter to compete, it is the Managersjob to make sure the contracts are correct. 
Often time the job of the manager is over looked or notunderstood by the Fighter.  At Academy ofStriking & Grappling the Coach/Trainer works along with the Manager topromote the Fighters career.  TheCoach/Trainer decides when the Fighter is ready to fight and at what weightthey will fight at.  He then informs theManager that the Fighter is ready.  TheManager will then contact Match Makers letting them know about their Fighterand tries to secure a fight.  Once afight is secured the Manager informs the Coach/Trainer, who makes the decisionto take the fight or pass. 
A Manager must know their Fighters, not only the weight, therecord, the age, the height, how long they have been training, their strengthsand of course their weakness, date of birth, medical requirements, licenserequirements for each state, and if they are under any suspensions.  The Manager must know this for each and everyone of their Fighters.  ASG Fight Managerknows this information for every one of their amateur and pro MMA Fighters andBoxers.  Managers are on the phone dailytalking to Match Makers looking for fights for their Fighters, they take callson holidays, midnight, weekends, during family dinners anytime that there mightbe a fight for the MMA Fighter or Boxer that the Coach/Trainer says is ready.
Once the Coach/Trainer decides to take the fight and believeme it is not easy process to come to this decision.  There are many times the Coach/Trainer willhave the Manager request more information about the other Fighter, there couldbe many phone calls discussing a 1 or 2 pound change in weight and of course itis never decided after just 1 phone call. The Manager then negotiates the contracts for the Fighters.  If it is a Professional Fighter then ofcourse the purse (pay) is discussed, will it be a straight pay to fight or isit going to be a pay to fight plus pay to win, will there be travel includedand if so how much, hotel rooms are covered and how many and for how many days,will there be food vouchers/allowance provided and then what appearance arerequired to be made by the fighter. 
If it is an Amateur Fighter there is less to negotiate; foodvouchers, hotel rooms and if possible travel money.  For both Amateur and Professional MMAFighters and Boxers there are medical requirements and it is the responsibilityof the Manager to make sure their Fighters meds are update and have met eachstates medical requirements.  Every statehas similar requirements as to medical exams, some require more some requireless, but nevertheless it is a Manager’s job to make sure their Fighter meetsthe current medical requirements for the state that the fight is locatedin.  If the Fighter needs to update theirmeds or meds for the first time, the Manager makes the appointments and usuallyaccompanies the Fighter to make sure the appointments are met.  After the med’s the Manager must keep arecord and copies of all medical reports to be able to provide them with eachstates Athletic Commission. 
A Manager’s job is still not done, they must accompany the Fightersto the fights to make sure that the contracts are correct, the rooms are availableand anything else that the Manager negotiated is provided.  ASG Manager takes care of all paperwork forboth Amateur and Pro Fighters that fight for Academy of Striking and Grappling.  When an ASG Fighter arrives for weigh-insthey take a seat and the Manager takes care of everything.  The Fighter is there to concentrate onfighting not to worry about paperwork, there have been many fights where ASGManager has attended and has been asked by Fighters from other gyms to helpwith their paperwork, because they have no Manager to help.  A Fighter should not be worried aboutpaperwork before thier fight, they should be concentrating on their fight.
Now that everything is in place, all paperwork is doneweigh-ins are finished, Fighters are fed and in their rooms, the Manager meetswith the Coach/Trainer and Promoters to start planning the next fights.  A Managers job is not done until the Fighterhas fought, has been checked out by the doctor and cleared or taken to thehospital and released to the Manager and after fight meetings with thePromoters are completed.  Then theManager starts all over again for the next fight and the next Fighter.  Academy of Striking and Grappling provides acomplete team for its MMA Fighters and Boxers; that includes Managers, Coachesand Trainers.
A Fighter competing without a Manager is the same as aFighter entering the ring or cage without a Coach/Trainer;  This is true for both Amateur andProfessional MMA Fighters or Boxers.

Why Practice?

Posted on 15 May, 2013 at 23:28 Comments comments (166)
Is practice really important, I mean after all you havelearned your skill and have won a few MMA fights or some Boxing Matches or afew Wrestling tournaments so why do you need to practice every day?  To be a good competitor is all I have to dois learn the skills and I will become a champion from there. 
In gyms throughout the world you will find athletes practicingtheir skills; as they say practice makes perfect, but is that true?  Should it be perfect practice makes perfect.  Only 1% of the athletes in the gym willbecome top competitors, that one percent understands the importance of practiceand have the determination to practice until they are perfect.
 It is easy to findthe one percent, they are the ones that show up every day, that do every moveuntil it is perfect and when they can’t get the move perfect they will continueto repeat the moves until they are perfect. They are the athletes that never cheat themselves by not doing a fullpushup or cheat themselves by not doing all the reps the coach said to do, or theytake several breaks during the practice. They are the first to arrive, the last to leave and the athlete thatwill work the hardest.
They will listen to the coach and follow his direction; thecoach knows that if he tells them to run 3 miles they will run 3+ miles, ifthey coach says do 10 reps they will continue until the coach says to stop,they will listen when the coach shows them a move, they will listen when thecoach breaks down a move, they watch their last competition and learn fromtheir mistakes.  They do not like to misspractice, they find a way to make practice, even if they have no ride; theywill walk or run to get to practice.  Theone percent do not let things get in the way of their determination to become achampion; the other 99 percent will have 100 reasons why they cannot makepractice. 
The one percent knows that when they win a fight it isbecause of their practice, their determination and their Coach, and they  know when they lose that it is because oftheir determination, their practice and their Coach.  The 99 percent think that when they win it isbecause of them, but if they lose it is because of the Coach, or their trainingis bad, or the fight was not fair; everyone else’s fault but their own.
Champions are not born, Champions are made.  

How Important is Proper Nutrition to A Competitor:

Posted on 11 April, 2013 at 23:13 Comments comments (397)
As a competitor, rather it is professional/Amateur Boxer,Wrestler, or MMA Fighter it is important to understand that training is only one part of what it takes to be a champion: understanding contracts, public image, weight maintained, public speaking and nutrition are components of professional/Amateur competitor. Academy of Striking & Grappling located Anthe Inland Empire, Moreno Valley, Southern California trains their Boxer’s,Wrestlers, and MMA Fighters all components needed to be a successful competitor.
When a competitor trains they understand why they workout for 5 to 6 hours a day, why they run 10 miles a week, why they lift weights,why they exercise; they work this hard to prepare their body for the fight,rather it is boxing, wrestling, Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai or MMA.  A competitor will spends hours a day learning and perfecting skills required in their arts, but then they will go and eat and drink food that contains very little nutrients. By eating foods that lack in nutritional value it defeats the purpose of the hours they spent training. 
Proper nutrition is a skill that all competitors must learn and live by.  Training breaks down your muscles, proper nutrition helps you to build those muscles back.  Protein is important because it helps for the growth, repair and maintenance of all cells in their body.  Protein is a major component of all muscles,tissues and organs and is vital for practically every process that occurs within the body. (Davita, Inc. 2012)
Competitors know that carbohydrates provide energy, but do they know what else carbohydrates do and what foods carbohydrates can be found.  Carbohydrates lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers; they also help with weight management.  As competitors it is important to know that weight management is important due to the fact that every competition is based on the weight of the competitor.  Complex carbohydrates are found in wholegrain products.  Karl Glover, owner of ASG was a World Class Wrestler, an All-American and an alternate on the USA Olympic Wrestling Team and because of this he understand and teaches proper weight management and how to safely drop weight for competition. 
You will often see an athlete enter in the gym drinking an energy drink or a drink such as Gatorade, thinking that this will help them during or after their training.  The ingredients in energy drinks are caffeine, sugar, phosphoric acid, polyphosphates, sodium hex phosphate, calcium phosphate, mono potassium phosphate, sodium and polyphosphates.  Examples of drinks that contain the above: Amp Energy, Muscle Milk, G-2 Gatorade, Gatorade, Powerade,Monster, Vitamin Water, Propel Zero, and several soda drinks. Did you realize that these additives are used for fertilizers, soap and to make fine china.There is very little nutritional  value in these drinks. 
Competitors need to learn how to read the labels on the food they eat and the drinks they drink in order to keep their body in the best physical shape possible. A competitors diet will change when he is competing or just training, but Karl Glover, ASG always recommends taking a daily multivitamin.   It is important to understand what you put into your body and how that affects your outcome when you compete.

Obesity Rate on the Rise

Posted on 19 February, 2013 at 19:51 Comments comments (364)
The obesity rate in the United States is on the rise according to the CDC.  Academy of Striking & Grappling not only trains professional/amateur fighters we have developed training programs that will help to decreased the obesity rate in our community.   ASG provides classes in mixed martial arts for at risk children and adults. These classes will give the students the opportunity to learn how to stay physically fit how to set and accomplish goals and will prepare them to compete in the martial art of their choice. There are classes in boxing, wrestling, jiu jitsu, muay thai and a combined class of mixed martial arts. Along with the physical activity they will be attending fitness class and classes on nutrition. ASG believes that by providing these classes through mix martial arts it will increase the understanding of the importance of a healthy body and help the students to stay on task of achieving the goal of a healthy body.ASG (Academy of Striking & Grappling Association) was founded in July 2007. In January 2008 our programs were successfully implemented and we have had the opportunity to work with The City of Moreno Valley, The United States Army and The Riverside County Mental Health Department. We have been successful in building a program where our members have set goals and accomplish their goals through competition. In 2011 we sent 25 of our members who represented 6 Southern California High Schools and Elementary  schools to compete in USA Wrestling National Tournament held in North Dakota and USA Wrestling National Tournament in Idaho. All 25 of our students made the USA Wrestling National teams.ASG would like to continue our mission of serving our community (Inland Empire) Moreno Valley, Southern California in reducing the obesity rate through physical activities in non-traditional sports: Muay Thai, Wrestling, Boxing, Jiu-Jitsu-Grappling and MMA Training. 

Can training ever be to hard?

Posted on 2 February, 2013 at 18:40 Comments comments (45)
Had something funny happen this week, had a visitor asking if he could try a day of training with our local MMA Inland Empire fighters and I said sure, go right ahead.  He said that he was a pro fighter who has had several MMA fights throughout Southern California and had even fought in some major venues, great.  This gives me the opportunity to see how my fighters do against someone with experience.
He started in our 3rd class of the day, my MMA fighters had already trained in two classes before this one.  We did the every day training that I put my MMA fighters through and I was surprised to see that he could not make it through the rest of the training.  Now, I know that my training has been said to be one of the hardest training people have gone through, but he is a professional fighter, this should not be new to him. 
My question is when does training become to hard?  As a world class wrestler I trained twice a day everyday, plus did road work, because I wanted to be the best.  How does a fighter determine when they have trained enough, when they are undefeated, when they hold a title, or is it that they really do not want to be the best they  are ok with average?