In the blink of an eye

I love old films, I used to love coming in from school and watching old classics on a Friday, or on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon when I was younger. There was nothing better than sitting with your pop, some crisps and sweets just working your way through them as you immersed in the movie. One of my favourite ones was called “Goodbye Mr Chips” it was a tale of a boarding school master that followed his teaching career through from a green as grass teacher right through to the end of his days, it showed generation after generation of […]

Barcelona….. It was a Riot

After a bad year health wise I didn’t know if I was going to make this Tai Kai, but my body was getting better and we all had been looking forward to seeing Nagato in action ..and it was slightly cheaper than going to Japan so when the 17th of October rolled around we were excited. Barcelona day 1 We all met at Newcastle airport, a four man team from the AFC consisting of myself , Dave Alan (or big Al for some reason lol) and Rufus. We checked in and went through to the departure lounge after Alan got […]

Shaping The Next Generation

I have taught children’s classes for the last 32 years and they are still some of the best classes to teach in my week, don’t get me wrong they are always challenging but are so rewarding. We take children from the age of 4 and teach them small bite size pieces of martial arts in a half hour class, so that they can take it in easier and retain it so they can show us at grading times. This 4-6 years of age class are called the Terrapins (or tiny terra’s if you forgive the play on words). I love […]

Sands of time

Some time ago Kerry and I went on a trip to Edinburgh, Scotland to see John Edward (a spiritual medium) who we have watched for years, read all his books and were so excited to be seeing him in person. He was amazing, inspiring, but he was not the only thing that inspired us on the trip. We were walking around this lovely city of Edinburgh, when we came across Jenner’s, an amazing shop, which had been there for over 170 years. It was a very expensive shop with a lot of high-end items but as we walked around comparing […]

Can money buy you respect?

You must have heard this quietly under someone’s breathe “he’s loaded!” Is this remark supposed to impress me or make me act in a certain way? Respect to me has nothing to do with money, but so many of things in life seem to cater for money or money is used to gain respect from others. People seem to change their attitude towards others when they think they have money or don’t have it. This has been irritating me for a while know and I want to get it off my chest. I have watched people completely change the way […]

Bullies have not changed

We have always taught our girls and all of the children at the AFC to not tolerate bullies, what are the signs to look out for when you think you are being bullied. So, we were very surprised when Erin came in complaining about girls in her year, this is a group of so-called IT girls that think they have some sort of rule over the other kids in the year. When you drift your mind back to your school days, you all knew who the girls were, and even now you will still put them in that category, times […]

Full range of motion

When do we lose our full range of motion? Watch a baby/toddler move, see how natural their movements are, they crawl, turnover, squat and are generally bendy little things. I love studying how they move, balance, and strengthen themselves via movement. As a child we take movement for granted when we run around skip and climb on things, we don’t notice that we start stiffing up and become less agile, we lose our range of motion. As an example, I can go through a stretch routine with my kickboxing class and I can hear them stretch, with lots of grunts, […]

Full time pad man

“My shoulder hurts, they hit hard, my fingers hurt, they hit me” all these statements and many more is what I hear as I walk around teaching martial arts. Pad work is a skill that a lot of people overlook they think of it as being put in goal when you were a kid when the two pots and in rule was applied. Meaning when you scored two goals you went into goal until someone scored two goals past you; funny how bad you get as a goal keeper when it is your turn in the nets. Then you are […]

In the company of legends

Bob Sykes and Paul Barnett of M.A.I magazine have run the Martial Arts show for the past 3 years, but this year was going to be the best ever, and I wanted to be there. Bill Wallace, Benny the Jet Urquidez and Brian Jacks were all going to be there along with a host of amazing martial artists at the Doncaster Dome. I was gearing up and getting myself excited, like a kid going to Disney world when disaster struck; my knee locked out. I have had a reoccurring injury where my knee sprains and locks out, so I can’t […]

Full Circle

Standing in the gym was as surreal moment that was shattered by the 15/16 years old I was just about to teach boxing to! I had stood in that very same spot not knowing the path my life would take until I returned to this place, this school, and this gym. When I was 15 I had already begun my martial arts journey, travelling to Darlington every Thursday to train for 3 hours and then practice what I learned in this gym of St Anselms RC high school (now St. Thomas More) at the youth club every Monday and Wednesday […]