Wow! You’re back! I honestly didn’t think you’ll be back at all after the bombshell I dropped at the end of my last post. So with that in mind, I want to say I’m truly thankful that you are. If you didn’t come back then the only people reading this would be the weirdos and cranks that keep emailing me for my un-washed training shorts, and to be honest, I can do without them….the weirdos and cranks that is. Not the shorts. I’m sure I’d get some strange looks at training turning up in my undies…….Anywayyyyy.
Now if you did actually read my last post, you’ll know that I’m skipping forward a few weeks worth of training. If you haven’t then click here, read it and I’ll be waiting for you. It’s ok, just don’t take too long……..Caught up? Great!
So it’s now Sunday July 17th, and it’s a huge day for SEW and the SEW Training Academy. You see it’s the annual Hawkinge Fun Day, and the event took place on the grounds right outside where we train, the Hawkinge Community Centre. And to celebrate the day SEW opened up the doors to the public to watch us academy students train. Yup that’s right, we were letting you get a peek behind the curtain (inside wrestler talk there, you’re welcome), and a free show was being held later that afternoon, that involved the pro wrestling debut of one of the students (and also one of my closest mates, claim to fame right there!)
We also had a stall outside the Centre, among the many that were there, selling the awesome (no I’m not being paid to say this, they really are) SEW Training Academy T-Shirts and vests. Look below and tell me they’re not too sweet! I’d like to thank our wonderful SEW Training Academy Head Coach Matt H for posing.
It was also a very big day for me personally as I was bringing along my eldest son Luke. He’s 15 and although he’s not as big a fan of wrestling as I am, he does watch WWE on and off. He was more looking at the fitness and technical side of the lesson than anything else (although secretly he wanted to see his old man make a fool of himself I think!) Coming along for the day too was my step-daughter Tasha. She wasn’t training, she watched. But as the day progressed she was roped into helping out at the merch stall outside as well as handing out flyers and spreading the SEW gospel. It really was a family affair for me.
Training began at 8am on the button, and thanks to our wonderful teacher, his wife and fellow student Amy, and fitness coach Matt, we didn’t have to set up the ring as they had very graciously done so the night before. Which was brilliant news as we had more time to train. Fantastic start to the day!…..Which was soon shattered when the warm up began.
Being a particularly gorgeously sunny morning, Matt T (Academy fitness coach) decided it would be a good idea to warm up outside. So the entire academy were in front of the community centre, watching stalls and attractions being set up for the day’s events. People were watching us and walking by, talking amongst themselves as to what we were doing and why. A great promotional ploy there if I do say so myself.
Warm up consisted of the usual jogging on the spot, some star jumps, followed by a nice lap of the green in front of the centre. Matt T sent us on our way with the only proviso being that we all had to stay together as a group and not thin out. So off we all went for a gentle jog, and within seconds the group had split into two distinct packs. I’ll name these Pack One (the fitter group) and Pack Two (not so fit group). It’ll come as no surprise to find that I was not only in pack two, but bringing up the rear in my own way of panache and style. Upon reaching the start/finish point, Matt T proclaimed that as we didn’t stick together as a group on the lap around, that we’ll have to do it again and again until we do. So off we went again, all muttering obscenities under our breath but smiling through gritted teeth as we jogged past Matt T.
This time we did as was instructed and stayed together as a group, and this time I wasn’t bringing up the rear, and I even sprinted the last 50 yards back to the start/finish point. Ok, yes, I did it to impress Luke . I sprinted, then acted like it was nothing around him, like I do it all the time, water off a ducks back. I even earned myself a nod of appreciation from him. But when he turned his back to me I soon bent over and sucked in as much oxygen as my poor little lungs could take. I think I may have peaked too soon in the “impressing my son”stakes.
Once everyone had a sip of water/juice/energy drink, we went straight into the stretching part of the lesson. Again we were still outside the centre, on a patch of grass that we had claimed as our own (and where our own SEW merch stall would be later in the afternoon) and now Matt H (pictured above sporting the SEW vest) would take over the rest of the lesson. Now I’m not sure if you’ve ever watched yourself or seen anyone stretch their muscle groups, but it’s not the most athletic of things to watch. In actual fact, it looked like we were a tangled mess of humanity, so I did chuckle to myself when I saw a few of the younger members of the class suck in their stomachs when a local gymnastic team of teenagers around their age arrived and began to set up in front of us! Yes Luke, I’m talking about you!
Warm up – Check! Stretching – Check!
Time to head back inside the centre for strength and conditioning. Matt H had a new trick up his sleeve this week. You see I wasn’t around the week before (my wife’s birthday and she would have stretched me for a lot longer and harder than Stu Hart ever could if I did attend) and I had heard that Matt H had implemented something new for the S&C part of the lesson……dreaded circuit training!
Just a quick break in proceedings to shill some social media bits and bobs. I actually have a page on Facebook totally dedicated to this blog. It’s cunningly called “Diary Of A 30 Something Trainee Wrestler”, and you can find it at this link right here. I’d also like to plug mine and South East Wrestling social media too as I have your undivided attention. Click the links, have a gander and if you’re feeling particularly nice, maybe gives us a like and a follow too 😉
South East Wrestling website – http://www.sepw.co.uk
South East Wrestling Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/SouthEastPro
South East Wrestling Twitter – https://twitter.com/SouthEastPro
My Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/30SomethingTrainee
My Twitter – https://twitter.com/ski101
I’ll now hand you back over to your regularly scheduled reading material…..
Todays circuit consisted of running one lap around the outside of the community centre, 50 squats, 20 diamond push up’s (hands shaped like DDP’s diamond rather than far apart like regular push ups), 20 leg flutters, 20 sit up’s and 20 burpees, all to be done in any order. My heart sank when I saw these listed on the flip chart that Matt H had brought into the hall. I just about survived the two laps of jogging around the green, how in the blue hell am I supposed to do this without a trip to A&E straight afterwards? One glance over my shoulder to see Luke and Tasha was all I needed to suck it up, stop mentally whining, and just do it. And that’s what I did. I lined up by the back door to the hall and got ready to do my lap…..
Seven minutes later and I was done. I was a sweaty, heavy breathing mess, but I had done it. A few moments to compose and quietly congratulate myself on not passing out, I walked (some will say crawled) over to Luke to ask him his time. “Six minutes on the dot Dad” was his reply, and the beaming smile on my face told him I was extremely proud of him, while inside I was jealous of his achievement! Six bloody minutes! A whole minute faster than me! Dammit I gotta up my game! It was ok though, I’ll show him when it comes to the actual wrestling side of things. I’ve been watching pretty much my entire life, I know what I’m doing. I’ll have him there and restore the order back to as it should be, no worries.
After another quick drink break it was time for the moment Luke had been waiting for….stepping inside the squared circle. Matt H called us students into the ring and began to tell us the next part of the lesson. The students had to line up and, from one corner to the opposite corner, do forward/backward rolls and shoulder rolls, to learn spatial awareness inside the ring, and to get used to contact in the ring. Now this meant I had to step out as my bloody tricky ear (thanks Coach!) wouldn’t let me do any rolling of any kind. So out I jumped, and Luke followed suit. He didn’t want to do anything without me.
Standing ringside watching everyone do something as simple as a forward roll bothered me. A lot. I didn’t let it show as I didn’t want to upset Luke or the class, but if I couldn’t do something as simple as that, then how would I be able to do anything inside the ring. Not being able to a forward roll or a flip bump (jumping somersault into a flat back bump) really limits not only what I can do in a match, but my opponent too. I had some serious thinking to do…..
With that out of the way, Matt called the class together to go through the next part. We would be drilling a spot called “The International”. Now if you have no idea what that is, or what I mean, here is a quote I found online from a guy named Kriss Sprules on the Quora website. It’s the most simplest of ways I’ve seen to explain the spot:
Depends on the country, but most common spots have names. For example, I could call an “international” – meaning the international sequence – which most guys would know is a whip to the ropes, drop down, leapfrog then (usually) an armdrag. Longer spots, or less common ones, may be worked out in advance and named or numbered.
If two guys have worked together a lot, they may just call the move that ends the spot. For example, if The Rock calls.the people’s elbow, you know it’s a whip to the ropes, spinebuster, elbow.
Got it? Can you visualise it the move in your mind? Well if you can’t, here’s a video of an interpretation of The International. Two of the greatest performers of all time, AJ Styles v Kurt Angle from 2008. AJ still uses this spot to this very day.
So now you have an idea and seen an actual use of The International, I can guarantee that when you next watch an episode of Raw, Smackdown, Impact, Lucha Underground or whatever tickles your fancy, you’ll see that spot and say “Oh yeah! That’s the international spot! I have Wayne to thank for pointing that out!”
Most of the students had run this spot from the week before, but due to my darling, most awesome wife’s birthday (she reads this blog, I gotta be careful) I wasn’t there. So myself and Luke still standing at ringside, we watched the rest of the students run the spot time and again, until everybody had it pretty much nailed down.
As it was Luke’s first lesson and the fact that he has never taken a bump in his entire life, he couldn’t take part in the drill, so instead, I showed him basic chain wrestling outside. Basically it was a lock up, into a wrist lock, and then transition into a hammer lock. So we stayed outside for a while, getting this licked, while looking on with envy (It’s worth pointing out that I too hadn’t actually taken a bump in the ring at this point, so yeah I was positively seething with envy).
As the drill, and the actual lesson was winding down, Matt jumped outside to talk to myself and Luke to see how we’re doing, how was Luke enjoying the lesson etc. Luke replied that he was loving it and can’t wait to come back again soon to bump and roll. Immediately I knew there and then that I had made a decision.I wouldn’t want my son to see me half ass my way around the ring, feeling embarrassed.
I pulled Matt to one side away from everyone else and told him that due to my gammy (thanks Nan!) ear, I don’t think I could wrestle to the best of my ability, I’ll be a liability in the ring and that’s the last thing I want for whoever had the misfortune to be my opponent. I didn’t want to be a Goldberg (controversial I know but it’s my opinion, my blog, so there).
So it was with a very heavy heart (cue the violins), that I told Matt that I don’t think I would ever be a wrestler. The motion sickness and balance issues were too much, let alone the fact that if I did a flip bump, the other person I was wrestling would have to cover for me for about ten seconds while I get my bearings back. As soon as those words left my mouth, I kid you not, I nearly burst into tears. Years of thinking about it and wanting it so bad, all to be taken away from me due to a damn ear problem. A frickin ear problem of all things! That’s me to a tee! I can’t go out with a muscle tear, or some other manly injury…..I go out with possibly the wimpiest injury ever.
Then all of a sudden, Matt asked me something that was like a ray of light, parting through the dark clouds in my mind. He said he was sorry that I felt like that, but maybe it was for the best. I did what I had planned out to do and that was to train to be a wrestler, so I shouldn’t be ashamed in myself……Had I ever thought about being a manager?
All of a sudden, a smile crept across my face…..