Tag Archives: martial arts

Martial arts, Basketball, and Websites: how egoism and team play collide in you

I vividly remember one of the main reasons I quit practicing and doing martial arts (shotokan karate do) about 12 years ago – it didn’t feel right. I’ve always enjoyed it (still love watching martial arts films and occasionally watch mixed martial arts fights), but at that time it seemed like egoism to me.

I earned my green belt, and then quit it. I felt I needed something else. One way to put it, I wanted to be a part of something big. That “something big” turned out to be basketball.

Now, I am no 7 foot giant (only 5’10 to be exact), but I played with heart for 7 years or so, after wrapping things up with karate. I was good for only a couple of things: I was a fairly good 3-point shot, and I loved playing in the paint, grabbing every rebound I could reach for. Everything else was pretty mediocre – my zone shot was poor, I was an awful dribbler (although could run pretty fast) and my stamina could have been a lot better. Anyway, basketball made me a team player, made me realize that even the best player cannot take it all up on his own (Wilt Chamberlain’s case).

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Posted by on August 16, 2011 in Day by day: Remarks, Soulscream


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Legendary martial arts champion Joe Lewis…is fighting for his life

Back in 2009, I interviewed Joe Lewis, arguably the best fighter that has ever stepped into the ring. Sadly, couple of days ago, Lewis announced on his Facebook page, that he had brain cancer, and was given from 6 to 8 weeks to live.

Lewis, is arguably, the best karate fighter that ever stepped into the ring. With him beginning his career, words as kickboxing and full contact were used for the first time ever. He was the first fighter that won the Heavyweight Kickboxing Championship in 1970.

In his 17 year fighting career, Lewis was a 7 times world champion, and was elected to various hall of fames 15 times. In his time, he won all the possible titles, including “World Karate Champion”, “World full contact Kickboxing champion”, “USA Black belts Kata champion”, “National US Kickboxing champion”. Lewis also studied Jeet Kune Do with the late great Bruce Lee. Twice Lewis was awarded as «the greatest fighter of all time».

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Posted by on July 27, 2011 in Day by day: Remarks, Soulscream


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CINEMANIA – Jean-Claude Van Damme: Baku is quite a place…

Yesterday, I got quite lucky. I got an interview answers from Jean-Claude Van Damme himself. Yep, you got it right. Took about 2 weeks to get it done. Actually, at first I wrote to his representatives couple of months ago, and back then it did not work out.

This time it did, as Van Damme gave a short exclusive interview to the website I work for (Today.Az).

At first, we have requested Mr. Van Damme to comment on his new upcoming sci-fi action film “Universal Soldier 4”, however veteran Hollywood actor did a little bit more, by agreeing to do a complete interview with us. So, read on below, as Van Damme talks about his favourite movie, the new Universal Soldier film, Baku, and how he choses his movie parts.

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Posted by on July 1, 2011 in Cinemania, Interviews


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Former Kickboxing champion, documentary filmmaker Ian Jacklin: I took on martial arts, after my friend got beat up in front of me

Below is a new interview I did a couple of days ago, with former kickboxing champion, actor, and documentary filmmaker, Ian Jacklin.

Ian Jacklin, like so many others, is a real-life kickboxing champion. His accomplishments however, do not end there. Jacklin is also an actor, and a documentary filmmaker. He’s a graduate of the highly acclaimed method acting school, Joanne Baron Studio via Bill Esper Via Sandy Meinsner. His 10-year acting career in Hollywood included starring roles in “Death Match” “Expert Weapon”, “KickBoxer 3″ as well as lead roles in several other action movies. His television credits include appearances on Days of Our Lives and the sitcom Just Shoot Me among many others.

His acting years coincided with his 10-year professional fighting career. In 1990, he was chosen to be the light heavyweight in the camp of heavyweight boxing champ Lennox Lewis. A black belt in Kenpo karate, Jacklin went on to become the International Sport Karate Association’s and the World Kickboxing and Karate Association’s North American champion. He was ranked number two in the world by WKA in 1992.

During the last years, his focus has been producing documentaries and music videos as owner of Co-dependent Pictures, Inc. In this interview with Today.Az, former champion talks about his path into the world of fighting, cinema, how he started making his documentaries, and also how he managed to completely transform himself physically in a very short period of time.

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Posted by on June 11, 2011 in Cinemania, Interviews


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CINEMANIA – Gary Daniels, and the “MMA drama” in Romania

Couple of days ago I talked to Gary Daniels, who, right now, is in Romania, shooting another movie. According to Gary, its a drama with martial arts (MMA to be exact). I noticed, that there have been a lot of “MMA dramas” being released lately. Most of them circle around a hero, who (under certain circumstances) is being forced to participate in these “underground, illegal fights” to achieve some brave goal (to get money for his sick mother, or to save his gf), its an old formula, yet it still works, which is definately a good thing in my book. People sometimes get tired of watching these “perfect” hollywood movies, they need something fresh, less heavy. And that’s exactly what a huge, rich b-movie world can offer.

Interesting thing is that IMDB does not (or did not have at the moment) any info on this new movie. So, I guess its nice to be connected to stars so that you can get news from the first source, so to speak. “Forced 2 Fight” is still in production, as Gary noted himself, he doesnt even have time to check out Romania, its on-the-set-and-back-to-the-hotel routine mostly. Well, at least keeps one focused. I will definately be waiting for this film to come out, as Daniels plays the lead in it, and this is something I, personally, havent seen in a long time.


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Posted by on April 10, 2011 in Cinemania


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EXCLUSIVE: “Mortal Kombat” star talks about life, martial arts, and his future

This is another interview i did for my website. Sharing it with you all here.

Keith Hirabayashi (Cooke) was born in Seattle, Washington on September 17, 1959. He grew up in the Seattle area and attended the University of Washington. He has trained in wushu, Tae Kwon Do and karate. His career in action movies has taken him around the world. He currently lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife Suzanne and their son Jake.

Keith began his martial arts career after becoming intrigued with Wushu during the performance of a wushu form. He sought out a Wushu instructor Roger Tung in 1973 and began his life long journey in Chinese martial arts. The Japanese-American’s enthusiasm for the art lead him to train Wushu in China in 1980 and he returned in 1982 to compete in China. In 1983 he joined the karate competition circuit and in 1985 he was inducted into the Black Belt Magazine Hall of Fame as the Competitor of the Year. Keith Hirabayashi has been five time Grand Champion at the US World and US Open Karate Tournaments. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on December 17, 2010 in Cinemania, Interviews


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SOULSCREAM – Thoughts, job, and kickboxing tournaments…

Today, one of the journalists in the news company I work for, asked me an interesting question – “If you absolutely had to have a physical job, aside from usual “mental” job, what would you do? Where would you work?”

Bastard caught me off guard there, that was a great question. In fact, I briefly touched upon this subject in my “Theory of Human Inefficiency” article, however I did not go deep into the details. So, why not develop this idea? In fact, that’s what I started doing, while we were smoking outside the office. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on November 19, 2010 in Soulscream


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