Due to the critical acclaim of my last blog post*, I’m striking while the iron is hot and posting again quick smart!
Sorry for not saying hello, very rude of me, I apologise. As the above statement says, while interest in myself is high, I’m trying to push out as much content as I can before it fades. So without further ado, let’s get into today’s blog –
*Critical acclaim is a very broad statement. In this case I’ve had more interest in the site and myself in the last few days than more than I can think of. Good things my true believers!
Not having all the posse members on a Sunday morning seems to be a regular thing. Dan C this week won’t be coming. He’s on daddy duty and to be fair, deserves a Sunday off. So this week it’s myself, Lee and Dan H on our merry travels to Hawkinge.
For the first time in a long time, I feel left out on the way to training. Today’s subject of choice is Dan H and Lee going to the Download festival in two weeks time. Now for the uninitiated, Download festival is the UK’s premier rock and metal music festival, and it’s somewhere Lee has attended for the past five or so years.
As I’ve said before in previous posts, Lee is really into his rock/metal music, much more so than me. I’m more of a Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Rage Against The Machine kinda guy. Retro, that’s the phrase that all you young kids use isn’t it?
For the entire car journey, around 25 minutes, the only talk in the car was about Download and who they’re both looking forward to see, the NXT shows at the festival, and just general music chat. I, on the other hand, was sat in the back seat twiddling my thumbs and trying to look like I knew the names of the bands that were being mentioned. I miss Conroy.
At last! We had parked up outside the community centre and all music talk had stopped and we began talking SEPW. I felt a lot better talking about a subject I know a lot more. So much so that I was positively racing to get inside and get that ring assembled. More wrestling, less music was my instant motto for the morning.
Over a year of doing these blogs, so you know what happened next, and there’s no need to go into great detail about how we assembled the ring and such like. Suffice to say that it was pretty much a full class today (minus Conroy, Vega who was suffering with a bit of a hamstring problem and Wendy who was at ComicCon) and we had the ring up and ready in no time at all. We’re becoming such pro’s at this, could even call ourselves ring crew although I’m sure that statement will come back and bite me in the ass at some point!
Around 9.00am and the warm up/stretching began in earnest. Head Coach/SEPW Owner Matt was working the class hard on a very warm morning in Hawkinge. It was that warm up that even though I was only doing the photos and videos of the session, I was sweating! It doesn’t happen often down here in the south east!
If you look closely at the cover picture at the top of the page, you can see Jack Voltage (Jacob), Justin Vincible (Justin) Alex Aces (Steve) and MeatHead (Nathan) playing Rock Paper Scissors while in the middle of our ring, performing a three minute plank. Seems they don’t need to work on their core much if they can play games!
No cardio work today, just straight into the lesson with an old favourite – the In & Out with an armdrag.
I’ve been scouring the net to find a gif that shows what I’m about to explain, as let’s face it, a picture/gif explains it better than I ever could. But I couldn’t find one, so you’ll have to do with my explanation I’m afraid. Here goes….
You’re whipped into the corner turnbuckle and as your opponent is running to splash you in said corner, you hop out of the ring via the top and middle rope. Your opponent then stumbles backwards after taking a turnbuckle to the head, as they’re doing that you jump over the top rope, hop onto the middle buckle as your opponent runs towards you, jump off the middle buckle springing your legs as high as they can go in the air, up and over your rushing opponent. With you now behind them, they turn around to face you and are met with an armdrag into an armbar in the centre of the ring. Easy huh?! I’ve got some pictures to help if you can’t visualise:
Variations of this drill have been practised over the past few weeks, so as you can imagine the students didn’t need much to brush up on this. All of them nailed it down in quick succession, so much so, that H/C Matt soon moved onto a kind of new routine. A mix or mashup (see what I did there?) of two drills that the students know, and make a whole new spot. What did H/C Matt do? With The Saint and Doug Williams still fresh in everybody’s memory (Hey Doug!) he came up with the Saint Williams drill. Shout out to Lee for coming up with the name.
This spot combined the slow pace technical hold for hold that was taught by The Saint and the more physical corner/strikes work that was taught by Doug Williams.
This easily chews up about three minutes of match time and showcases each person’s technical, power and physical ability. A slow paced more technical style that quickly up’s the pace when the other person escapes. You’ll be glad to hear that there’s no long explanation here for you, I used this time to do another of our now famous Facebook Live videos! So I’ll lay out now and let you see for yourselves just how well the students did….
Cool huh? Again it doesn’t take us long to pick something up and have it nailed down. Awesome academy, awesome H/C.
Quick look at the clock and it was 11.00am. H/C Matt quickly brought the drill to a close and told everyone what practice matchups he wanted to see today. Everyone would have around ten minutes to come up with a quick 8-10 minute match. The matches were as follows:
Jack Voltage v Justin Vincible
Alex Aces v ‘The Flash Of Brilliance’ Matt Terry (formerly Rookie Matt)
Chris Castle & Amber v Will Power! & Pretty Prince Davidson (Rhys)
Silas Roth & 2Tone v We Are One…..Fan (MeatHead & One Fan Dan)
As we had extra time today, H/C Matt asked me if I wanted to do a quick bit of announcing. My reply included bears and woods (Don’t know it? Look it up), and within seconds I quickly rolled under the bottom rope ala Trent Seven style and quickly spoke to everyone on their weights and suchlike. It felt awesome to be involved again, and with three weeks to go until Hustle & Heart II I needed the practice. Even if I had no microphone and had to use my awesome powerful but soft voice. Projection, folks, it’s all about projection.
After a quick chat with the participants of the first match, I set my camera up to record the action. And I gotta say I wasn’t feeling nervous at all. That was until my wife and little dude Logan walked in through the hall side doors…..
It was brought to my attention by academy member Ollie (2Tone) a few days earlier that I had been writing my blog for a year. I didn’t even know myself, I blame the fact that I’m getting old and losing my memory. Anyway, it popped up on Ollie’s Facebook memories and he let me know all about it, sharing and commenting too. I felt bad for not remembering myself, but proud at the same time too. Something that I started to just chronicle how I felt on the first couple of lessons, now has a small but rabid cult following of true believers who depend on me each week for their fix of my and all the SEPW Academy students adventures (Hey it’s my blog and I can think what I want!).
With that in mind, my awesome wife suggested that I celebrate it a little bit at training this week. You know, maybe make a speech, get a cake, and have a mini celebration.
Without the rest of the students and H/C Matt knowing, I arranged for my wife to turn up at the community hall, bringing the cake with her. And then once we had packed away the ring and before the rest of the students leave, I’d spring the surprise of listening to me some more (boooo) and eating cake (yaaaay).
Once Donna (my wife) and Logan arrived, I suddenly got nervous and I don’t know why. Very strange but something I shrugged off just as quick being the professional that I am.
Introducing Justin and Jack felt weird but in a good way. It had been a fair few weeks since I actually had the privilege of doing so, rusty I think you’d call it. The nervousness soon left me to be replaced by the rush of adrenaline. Yeah it was a small crowd, but it was a crowd all the same, hanging on every improvised word I said!
The matches all went between the 8-10 minute mark that H/C Matt asked for, and were great quick matches. Designed to be short, sharp and full of action, they all delivered in their own special ways.
2Tone was loud and obnoxious, trying new manoeuvres like a shoulder breaker on MeatHead. “The Flash Of Brilliance” Matt Terry cut a promo on me out of nowhere which not only surprised me and the students but was pretty damn good too. Just need to project that voice next time dude. Everyone was stepping up their game with H&H2 on the horizon.
An hour had passed, my nerves had very much left me, and it was time to call time on the lesson. Another four hours had flown by. It’s amazing how time passes by so quickly when you’re doing something you truly love.
As quick as the ring went up, it came back down just as quick. I even got Logan to help out picking up the smaller pieces of foam, after I had got his attention away from trying to beat up Justin and Dan H on the big blue crash mats. Future student material right there!
As everyone was packing away their gear, I quickly called out to everyone to not shoot off and to meet me by the table. After I had everyone’s attention, I delivered an on the fly speech, which was caught on camera by Ollie. He’s such a dude! So everyone, check me out in my jorts (cheers Luis) delivering a heartfelt speech.
Tugs at the heart strings doesn’t it?!? I really need to convey my feelings more as I don’t think I did there. I’ll sort that out in Closing Time.
Cake all eaten, hall kinda clean, we all bade farewell to each other. And in my case good luck too. While everyone was going home, I was being dragged clothes shopping by that awesome wife of mine. She did buy the cake, so couldn’t moan that much really.
I’ve banged on about Hustle & Heart II quite a bit haven’t I? Well in the words of the youth, sorry not sorry! It’s a huge deal for obviously myself and the Academy. Yes the original Hustle & Heart was a success but we didn’t know it would be an ongoing thing. We’re so so proud what we’re achieving and pushing the Academy onto new heights. Long may it continue.
And as I have your attention, let me point you in the direction of some NEWS NEWS NEWS!
More competitors will be announced in the coming weeks, along with the match up’s too. Exciting times at SEPW Towers!
And to finish up, I’d like to go back to my “speech” I made. I want a do over, so I’m going to do it now…..
Diary Of A 30-Something Trainee Wrestler/Breaking Kayfabe is now just over a year old. A year! It’s hard to believe that I’m still at the Academy let alone still writing my blog. I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you that has read my blog via my site or via TJRWrestling, where I originally began this adventure. To those that have liked my blog on Facebook, Twitter etc, that have shared it on all social media outlets. Not only have you promoted me but you’ve promoted SEPW around the globe, which was a main reason why I started this in the first place. I could see we have something special here in SEPW and seeing you all around the world talking about us and promoting us, it’s amazing. Thank you all for accepting my strange, corny, and sometimes witty blog. I love you all………*cue the applause track as I walk off stage grasping a well deserved Slammy award*
See you soon true believers.