January 6, 2011 Posted by danb
Part 18 of our ongoing interview series with amateur MMA fighters.
This week we spoke with Brooks Bishop. He spoke with us about what motivates him to be a better fighter and how he decided he wanted to get into MMA.
Thanks for speaking with us Brooks. What is your current record? Any fights coming up soon?
Well I’m currently undefeated at 0-0. (Haha.) My first fight is scheduled for February 12, 2011.
Awesome. That first fight is a big step. It takes a lot of courage to climb into that cage for the first time. At what point in your life did you realize you wanted to become a competitive Mixed Martial Artist?
UFC 66 Liddell vs Ortiz II was the first event I ever saw and it got me hooked. Recently I found out about a martial arts gym about 30 minutes from my house and I decided to give it a shot and MMA is their base. I’m not sure if MMA is going to be my career or if its just a phase. But either way im going to go at it 100%.
That's the right attitude to take. Have there been any challenges in your life that you’ve had to overcome in order to get where you are today?
I’m very blessed that I haven’t had any heart breaking moments in my life or anything to completely change my life. I’ve always been blessed with everything I need. However, I do have a permanent lower back fracture that tends to bother me on occasion.
Great. If your greatest worry is a bothersome lower back then things must be going well. Where do you train? Care to make a shout out to any of your instructors or training partners?
I train at Delta Martial Arts in Cleveland, MS under Daniel Burton and Bryan Goza. They’re great trainers. Starting January 1st I’m going to start training also at Wolfpak MMA under Tony Delahoussaye.
Has your fighting style evolved since you began training or have you stuck with a specific style throughout?
My striking has become a lot more crisp and my ground game has really exploded. In my mind before I started training I thought I’d be the next Mike Tyson, knocking everyone out that got in my way, but that all changed when I started grappling. If you’ve never tried Jiu-Jitsu I highly recommend it.
I think everyone wants to be "like Mike" at some point. But you're right. Jiu-Jitsu is amazing. The mental aspects of MMA training are often overlooked. What you do to prepare mentally?
I’m new to the MMA game so I don’t really know exactly how to mentally prepare but I close my eyes and imagine my opponent putting me in positions and I try to imagine what to do in those situations - how to get out of them or how to finish him, etc. I also spend a lot of time watching fights to get ideas on what to do and also to calm me down. But I spend the majority of my mental preparation in prayer, none of this would be possible without God.
Is there anyone you would like to thank for helping you get to where you are?
First and foremost I’d like to thank Jesus Christ Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”. Secondly my parents for getting behind me 150% and doing everything they can to help me accomplish my goal of a big W. And last but certainly not least - my friends. They’re the best anyone could ever ask for.
What advice would you give to other people looking to get into MMA, or any competitive sport, for that matter?
Make sure you love it. No matter what sport or activity it is, if you don’t love it you will struggle and quit. I played football for three years and then quit because it just wasn’t fun anymore. So just make sure you love it and, of course, have fun with whatever you do and be safe.