Elite Wrestler and Jiu Jitsu Black Belt Ricky Lundell came in a while back to work with our MMA fight team. We are always looking to expose our members to the highest level of instruction and positive people. 1% better every day!
Coach Charles Martinez: Today, we have Ricky Lundell coming in to work with the fight team. Ricky’s a super high level wrestler, a super high level Jiu Jitsu guy. He’s been training his whole life. He was a really early black belt. Then, he went and wrestled under Cael Sanderson, who was probably the greatest college wrestler of all time.
In addition to all that, Ricky just has a great mentality for teaching. And I’m always trying to expose the guys to people that can expand their mind and open their eyes about training with a purpose, and trying to improve themselves in small increments, and kind of accepting that every day you got to try and get a little bit better. And I think Ricky kind of embodies that. So, it’s great to have him come in here, show his take on very small details. And he’s just really, really good instructor, and that’s the kind of people we’re trying to bring in here.
Here’s the background story of how our brother Zach Tenorio came to be part of the Arena family and MMA fight team. His journey to success has just begun. He has been a great teammate, staff member, and friend. We look forward to his return.
Zach Tenorio: Back in 2016 I was trying to go back home to Guam. I was out here for what was going to be at least a month and in that time I was kind of looking for a place to train. My brother’s friend found out that I was getting interested in MMA and trying to pursue it as a profession. She hit me up and said that her friends, Joe Duarte and Vince Salvador, were training at this place called The Arena.
I actually stopped by here to check it out and within like the first few days I really knew this was where I needed to be at. One of the things that influenced that was one, there was Vince here, and Vince is from Guam. Joe Duarte, he fought out of here as well. There’s Baret Yoshida, and Baret is from Hawaii. The vibe was just very laid back and kind of like island style almost, but the training was solid, and that’s kind of what I was more used to growing up in Guam, training in Guam.
Fast forward maybe like three months, Vince asked me if I was interested in working the front desk and immediately I was like, “Hell yeah,” and I’ve been working here ever since and it’s been amazing. They’ve fully supported me in my goals in pursuing MMA. They let me train. I’m always in the environment and I’m always watching, and they just had my back from day one.
Vince is like an older brother. He’s always looked out for me, super funny, super talented. He’s a cool dude, super cool dude. Working at the desk, during his classes I’ll just peek over and kind of just see what he’s teaching them and maybe try it on the side just while I’m on the clock. The Arena definitely helped me to be able to just focus practically all my attention to one thing, and that was just training and competing.
In the next few days I’m going to be moving home, back to Guam to spend time with my family while this whole COVID situation kind of blows over. Once everything opens back up, then it’s every intention of mine to come back out and continue to pursue exactly what I’ve been pursuing this entire time, and that’s becoming a champion.
Thank you to all the coaches, thank you to The Arena, thank you to life. Everybody has had my back from day one. My name is Zach Tenorio, man, and I’ll be back.
Guro Willie Laureano, a Filipino Martial Arts instructor shows some basic knife defense tactics during one of his many seminars here at The Arena.
Willie Laureano: From here, if I’m attacking Charles, all he’s doing, he’s going to base, he’s going to home base, right? That’s home basing, and that’s going to the opposite side, okay? That’s all he’s going to do, okay? Right?
So if I go here, he’s going to home base. He goes to that side. But notice that gift right there. That’s a boom. Okay, one more time. He’s on this side now. If he’s on this side, if I deliver this, he goes there, look at the left hook. He just goes back and forth. But notice I’m serving a drill right now so he can have the experience of doing the stepping properly first. I’m not wrecking him yet. Yet.
So from here I’m going. That’s it. That’s all I’m doing. See. All we’re doing right now. That’s it. Good. Now it doesn’t really matter. See, that’d be his left hand. Okay? Doesn’t matter. That’s it. Good. See what’s happening here. Does that look like boxing? Because that is Filipino boxing. That’s how it happened. All right, let’s do this. Go. Let’s do this. Enough talking.
If you understand movement you can see the beauty and application of all martial arts. Here is Coach Chuck demonstrating how simple movements from Wing Chun can be seen in modern day combat sports. Learn from everything and absorb what is useful.
For this tip, The Arena MMA and Kickboxing Coach Charles Martinez goes over some fundamentals of staying balanced while throwing a kick.
Coach Charles Martinez: Hey, what’s up? It’s Coach Chuck. Just give you another drill to work on while you’re at home. So you can use anything. You can use anything that you can use as a base to support your weight. It’s not really supporting your weight, because your weight should be mostly over your center of gravity. So I’m going to find something. I’m going to reach. I’m going to touch, now I’m just going to sit here, leg extended, hand out, head over my center of gravity, and just kind of find that shift.
If I shift to the side of my foot, I start to fall backwards at the end of my kick. Whichever direction my head goes, that’s the direction I fall during the kick. So I raise my leg. I’m not even trying to kick. I’m just raising my leg. Any direction that you lean your head will shift your center of gravity. Then as you try and retract your leg, your feet will set close together, and then they’ll fall backwards. So touch, if your balance, if your head is over the ball of your foot, no problem. You could be up on your heel or you could be more set down, either way. As long as this is a straight line, everything else should be fine.
So using that stop kick to kind of find your balance, switching out, touching, retracting, and then taking that pause out, where even though I’m not hitting hard, I’m just working on shifting my weight, turning my hips. Everything stays up. My hand stays up. My elbow stays close to my body. My other hand goes out. My chin is hidden. My chin is hidden on this side. And then just swinging my leg. So you don’t need a heavy bag to practice all these mechanics, and you can go high on the ball of your foot if you want. But as long as your foot turns out and your heel is able to move, you should be able to rotate your hip.
All right, so just finding any surface to act as a balance point so you can check your balance while you’re standing in your kick.
There is a level of precision that can be obtained through rigorous repetition and analysis of movement. Just because we do the same thing does not mean we are the same. Check out Coach Vince and Fighter Zach in this cool MMA fight sequence.
When MMA Legend Enson Inoue teaches seminars, students don’t just show up to learn some techniques. They want to hear what this warrior has to say on many topics, especially how to strengthen your mindset to prepare for battle. Hear what he has to say about training through fatigue.
Enson Inoue: What I wanted to address was what goes into your head when you hit fatigue. What is the normal thing that goes into most people’s heads when they hit the fatigue? Oh fuck. Right?
Especially when I tell you, I’m not going to tell you the time. I might fuck with you and make you go longer? You’re like, “Oh fuck. How long are we going?” It’s a bad thing, right? In the fights and training, whenever you guys fatigue, the first thing you guys think is, “Oh fuck.” Okay, let’s change that. Okay.
Fatiguing in a fight is a good thing. You guys say, “Why?” Okay, what I believe is when you fatigue, from every second when you think in your heart that you can’t go on and you do, you’re building yourself. Think of that. When you’re fatiguing and you’re continuing, you feel that fatigue come in and instead of thinking, “Oh shit, my body’s fatiguing. Oh, my core’s fatiguing. Oh, my arm’s going to start soon.” And you start thinking the negative thoughts, think about this. Think about this, “Okay, I’m fatiguing, my core’s fatiguing, but now every time I go past this point, I’m getting stronger. My core is getting stronger.” Not only your body, but mentally. Mentally, where you would have stopped. You know, a lot of times you can keep going because the instructor is telling you keep going, but you should be able to do it by yourself. You got to play a games at your mind and go and beyond that, beyond that. Tell yourself, five more seconds. I always do that when I’m in my gym, when I feel like I can’t turn another punch, I just do five punches at a time. When I can’t do five and it gets sloppy, I do three punches at a time. And it comes to a point where I do one at a time.
Yeah. So, it’s a mindset. So, when you guys feel fatigue or you have, you know, like you go in the gym, you guys know, you guys train every day, you go in the gym and today you’re flat. Fuck. That’s good. Why? You’re going to feel that one day in the fight, you might even feel it in the middle of the fight in the third round, and what are you going to do in that situation? You can never go negative in your fight. You’ve got to always stay positive. So, what’s going to happen if you train that, you’re going to say you’ve already been through that in the training so you know what you can and what you cannot do. You know what you have to tell yourself mentally to overcome those obstacles. Yeah? So, for me, if I’m fatiguing and I’m thinking every second, every five seconds, depending on the interval, how tired I am, and it gets shorter and shorter intervals. But I’ll think every 10 seconds I go on, I’m getting stronger. I’m becoming a stronger person mentally and physically. Maybe for Barret, he’s in better shape than me. Maybe he has to push another minute. Yeah? So, every person is different, but you have to learn for yourself what you’re going to tell yourself to continue.
There’s going to be times … The ring is a very small thing. You win and lose. That’s it. If you get knocked out, doctors will check you. But I always train for the streets. Yeah? If I give up on the streets is when I die. Okay? So, when I’m in the gym, I’m taking that opportunity to become a stronger person in the ring and in the gym, so what I do is I try to, when I feel fatigue, I feel like I’m lucky because now I got that chance to work through the fatigue. I get a chance to build my mental state. I get a chance to build myself as a fighter and as a person. Okay? Makes sense?
Striking Coach Vince Salvador goes over some footwork using back steps to keep your opponent in front of you. You can use this footwork in Boxing, Kickboxing or MMA.
Coach Vince Salvador: What’s going on guys? This is Coach Vince from The Arena. Today, we’re doing a boxing tip that you can use in footwork. When fighting as a southpaw unorthodox, and my feet are always in the same position, you’re taught when you’re going one direction, you move the foot that’s in that direction, and then you recover. An unorthodox way to keep someone in front of you is to back step. A back step is made popular by a lot of the Cuban boxers because they’ll take their back foot and cut you off by stepping behind themselves. If they’re here and you take a step that way, this foot will come behind me, this one will recover, then I can keep him in front of me and you can do it from both stances.
I could go from orthodox and I can make it a drill by going orthodox. I can back step, pivot, then I can switch my feet the same way I showed you earlier by stepping forward. Now, I’m south pole. Using my stance, again taking my back foot, shooting it behind me and recovering. Now, taking a step back, back to orthodox, recover back to center, same thing. When I do that, it opens up my stance.
When we’re back stepping, what we need to do is make sure that our foot creates this angle so that when I bring my other foot to trail, I have this angle, right, orthodox. When I’m doing it, I can combine movements. Let’s say my opponent moves this way. I can move my feet here, use this to draw back and I can keep him in front of me. It’s just another way to keep my opponent in front of me so he can’t get away.
The Arena MMA Coach Charles Martinez breaks down some proper mechanics to use when throwing an elbow in Muay Thai or MMA.
Coach Charles Martinez: Hey, what’s up, it’s Coach Chuck. We’re working on some simple punch to elbow mechanics. Right?
So starting from my good fighting stance, my lead hand goes out. My chin’s protected. On the retraction of my lead hand, my rear elbow shoots forward, knuckles go to the by-chest. Point of my elbow comes forward. Other hand comes back to my face. My weight resets. Right? So I touch with the jab. My shoulders are protected. My hip is rotated. Right?
As I go to throw the cross. It’s the retraction of my job. My foot steps, my rear foot steps, lands rotated, knuckles going against my chest. Other hand comes in the middle of my head, right foot is rotated, right hip is rotated. Weight dropped straight back down. So now off the jab cross. I throw the jab, I throw the cross. Same thing here, the retraction of the way. Knuckles of my left hand drive to my chest, horizontal elbow, right hand comes back to my face. Fighting stance resets.
First one, jab, step forward, knuckles of my rear hand to my chest, point of my elbow forward, hand comes up, not obstructing my eyes, so I can still see through this space. Jab, cross, same idea. Step, step, point of my elbow comes forward. Hands come up, knuckles go to my chest. I can still see. Last one from the cross, hook. Same idea. My weight shifts back to the lead side, rear hand knuckles rotate, drive the point of my elbow forward, body rotates, weight sets back. Just a nice way to include elbows and the stepping range to be able to get into elbow range from punch distance.
About The Arena
The Arena is the largest gym in North America for Combat Sports and Martial Arts instruction.