Every fighter remembers their first time stepping into the ring. The wave of emotions, the roar of the crowd – it truly is unforgettable. Today FightCamp Trainer Rocky Harris shares her story.
At 19 years old, Rocky stepped into the ring for her first kickboxing match. Before this fight, she was a first degree black belt in karate, winning dozens of tournaments. Although Rocky was successful in karate, she wanted a challenge and decided to compete in a different style. Leading up to her first fight and during her training camp, her confidence was at an all-time high. She had so much success thus far, and was ready to go.
During training for her upcoming match, Rocky’s coach had her doing a lot of stylistic drills and pad work, never really focusing on the basics. With her karate tournament wins and success so far, she almost felt she had an advantage. She was anxious to show everyone just how good she was and what she was capable of in this new area.
But one week before the fight, everything changed. Rocky injured her wrist while training and was no longer able to deliver blows with her left hand. She did the smart thing and called the fight promoter to inform him of her injury and that she would have to pull out of the fight. Sadly, that individual was not respectable nor ethical and threatened to blacklist her from all future fights and promotions if she did not fight in the match. He also threatened to tell all the other promoters in New York about her pulling out.
A Setback Is a Setup For a Comeback
Scared and not quite sure what to do, Rocky decided to take her injury and instead view it as a challenge. She was not going to back down now. Having watched numerous action and martial arts movies growing up, she remembered the movie, The Karate Kid, and how Danielson injured his leg in his big fight against Cobra Kai and was still able to win. "If he could do it and fight with one leg, so could I with one hand," she said to herself. With renewed confidence, she went into the fight looking for the knockout that could be made as the next great underdog story. Or so she thought.
One of Mike Tyson’s famous quotes is “everyone's got a plan 'til they get punched in the mouth.” Sadly, this was true for Rocky. As soon as fight night came and her opponent hit her, all of her training went out the window. She thought she had been hit with a rock and as she likes to tell it, she was “fresh meat in the middle of the jungle.”
It’s All About Survival
She felt like she had forgotten everything from her training, how to punch, and even who she was as a fighter. She was scared, and she found herself in survival mode. Between rounds, her coach gave her pointers, but she couldn’t remember what was said. She told herself that she had two rounds – two more chances to try and knock her opponent out and turn this fight into a triumphant story.
Unfortunately, she never got the knockout, but she learned a lot from that first fight.
The Basics Are Your Base
With FightCamp, we have a diverse group of professional trainers who have fight experience and stories to share and inspire you as you’re learning the fundamentals. As Rocky likes to say, “sometimes the basics can be boring and we want to skip it, and that’s why I wanted to skip it too,” but then we realize how important they are, and “then we learn to appreciate it.”
Are you ready to train like a fighter with Rocky and the other FightCamp Trainers? Get access to hundreds of boxing, kickboxing, strength, conditioning, recovery, and stretching workouts that will push you mentally and physically. Download the FREE FightCamp App and train with real fighters from the comfort of your own home.