Popularity in combat sports is mushrooming locally thanks to various martial arts and boxing coaches and instructors taking the initiative and passing on their passion for their particular discipline.
One of them is Grey Brett who is a Muay Thai instructor at the Rogue Gym on West Bay Road, in front of the Seven Mile CrossFit gym.
His regular evening classes have grown considerably since starting last year and there is a nucleus of exponents who hate to miss a torturous session.
Flloyd Moxam is the Rogue Gym manager and he too has well received classes, teaching grappling, kickboxing and the white collar boxing team.
One of Brett’s clients is Jamie Falloon who has been going through an hour’s personalised routine up to four times every week since mid-May.
“I do the Muay Thai training for fitness reasons,” says Falloon. “It’s an awesome way to get a workout in. Plus you don’t get bored.
“I work really hard because that’s my hour and I only get out what I put in. As far as trying to achieve, just to better understand the sport and to it well. I’m considering doing some training in Thailand and there it’s very hard core, so the more I can learn now the better. Time will tell.”
Her only other physical activity is yoga at Bliss.
Before moving to Grand Cayman four years ago, Falloon used to train at a boxing gym in Winnepeg just to keep fit. “I’ve been doing yoga for about two and half years and apart from that my only sporting history is just general gym stuff.”
Canadian Falloon was born in Brandon, Manitoba and lived in Winnipeg before coming here and trained at the Pan Am Boxing Gym.
Being a woman does she feel intimidated or uncomfortable in a male-dominated gym? “Initially I felt a little intimidated, it had been four years since I had done any boxing. But if you just show up you realise really quickly that everyone is very welcoming.
“Everyone is there for the same reason – to learn and grow and become better at this sport. My boxing gym back home was pretty hard core and at first I had to persuade myself to go back a second and third time.
“But after that I really got into it. I guess having had that experience made me not worry or give any thought about the male-dominated part. I was used to it from before and it no longer phased me. But Rogue Gym actually has a lot of females that attend the classes.
“Grey is an awesome trainer. Very educated on the sport and you can tell he has a real love for it. And all of that comes through in his training, it makes his students love it too.
“He’s patient and takes the time to explain and make sure you understand. You can tell he just wants to see his students learn and succeed. He’s got a great energy and his classes are always fun. It makes you wanna keep going back. He’s very welcoming and not intimidating, always encouraging.”
Falloon, 28, is a massage therapist at the Ritz-Carlton. She wants to encourage others to start training at Rogue. “I haven’t inspired anyone yet, but I’m sure I will. My advice to anyone considering doing it is to go in, try out a class and I’m guessing you will end up loving it.”
Coach Brett is impressed with Falloon’s commitment so far. “Jamie plans going to Thailand to train at a Muay Thai camp there,” he says. “She has asked me to help her learn traditional Muay Thai prior to her trip. She is also looking to increase her endurance, strength and overall fitness.
“She works very hard every time she trains with me and, as a result, she has progressed with the basics fairly quickly. Through repetition and exposure to new techniques she will continue to improve because of her dedication to her end goal.”
Brett is pleased that his expanding class is well represented by females despite the toughness of the workouts. “Our classes average about 20-22 people and I’d say 40 per cent of those are women.
“My advice to women it to just give it a try. You’ll love it and the benefits are noticeable very quickly. Anyone that is interested in bettering their overall fitness, improving functional strength and endurance, weight loss or toning will see results after only a few weeks.”
Brett has exciting plans for his charges. To help maintain interest and chart progress, Rogue Muay Thai is planning a seminar with a world champion Muay Thai fighter this summer. The seminar will also be geared to developing the Rogue fighting team for future competitions and there will also be a mixed levels section that anyone can attend.
For more information, contact Grey Brett, [email protected], or phone: 916-2271