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My Interests

Since very young I have had a great interest in the martial arts. As you can imagine my interest also grew in other areas such as fitness, weight training and flexibility. Even today, you can still find me in a relaxing evening with my nose in yet another book of similar subject. Mind you, I am a firm believer in the practical being far more important than theoretical so I spend a lot of my spare time actively developing and honing.


My Background

Initially I was introduced to martial arts for the aspects of self defence by my mother who took me down to the local Masonic Lodge where there was a weekly Traditional Karate Session. From age 10 I trained as often as I could. By 14 I reached my 1st Dan Black Belt and level of junior instructor. By 18 I was 3rd Dan and began travelling with my Shihan to teach in other Towns throughout Tayside, Angus and Fife. I also competed in local Freestyle competitions often coming within the top 3. I was then offered to join the Scottish Karate Governing Body (SKGB) Kumite Karate Team. I declined, at around this time I started looking further and gaining more information and techniques rather than compete. In my early 20's I continued my Karate both with my originating School and other Schools/Styles. I furthered my skills in other arts such as Ju Jutsu, Aikido, Traditional Japanese Weapons and Tai Chi.

In my quest for skill and knowledge, I tried to gain more understanding and began follow the late great Bruce Lee learning as much as I could about Wing Chun and the concepts of JKD. Unfortunately, this was not as easy as first thought as there were no schools within my locality. In my late 20's up until now I stretched out that bit further managing to attend classes hosted by Rick Young(Kali/Kickboxing and JKD concepts), Dan Inosanto(Kali/Escrima, Silat, Kickboxing and JKD). Unfortunately though, I still didn't find the embryo of JKD - Wing Chun. For that, I was lucky enough to find Master Wong in 2003 and I haven't looked back.

Further to this quest a friend of mine asked me if I had seen the Russian Martial Arts. I initially thought Sambo, but no he meant Systema. I Googled and YouTubed and found an amazing Fighting System with very amazing instructors. This was my new quest, to be able to move like them and almost have a sixth sense regarding your opponent. This chapter in my book is still being written but having spent since 2011 studying, and then benefitting from the Systema Full Range Camp with the Masters in the summer of 2012, I must say this is a journey of many miles but I have begun with my first step. It is really just the first ripple in my pool when it comes to Systema.

Running concurrently with my interests within the martial arts, I have also had a huge interest in strength training and body conditioning. To this point, I was lucky enough to find a true master in this field - Steve Maxwell. Not only has he been a fountain of knowledge for me but he is a prime example of a man who really can "Talk the Talk and indeed Walk the Walk." I have the great privilege to say he is my Friend, Master and Mentor. I have also been fortunate to train with the other Kettlebell Greats such as Mike Mahler and Steve Cotter.