The Birth of 12 Gauge MMA….

Posted in 12 Gauge MMA with tags , , , on May 28, 2011 by matt12gauge

After many years being involved in MMA (nearly 12 years) I finally opened my own club in late October 2009. Over the last year and a half the club has grown faster than I could of hoped and we now have a fight team competing on the amateur and semi professional scene as well as many students who just enjoy training in mixed martial arts.

Early 2011 sore the club move to new premises along with Factory BJJ where we now have a dedicate 1,500 sqft mat space along with hanging bags and soon to be fitted with a cage wall.

The club has several days to train on and is suitable for all levels from absolute beginner to advanced. The timetable is below:


6-7 pm – Fundamentals Course
7-8 pm – Novice MMA
8-9.30 pm – Avanced MMA


6.30-7.30 pm – Mixed Level MMA


6-7 pm – Fundamentals Course
7-8 pm – Novice MMA
8-9.30 pm – Advanced MMA


11-11.30 – MMA Circuit
11.30-12.30 – Mixed Level MMA

Check out 12 Gauge MMA for more information and prices etc.


Smash him in the face!!

Posted in Fighting and Competing with tags , , , on December 2, 2009 by matt12gauge

This weekend I taught a seminar on cage control and ring craft for a team of first time fighters, cornering fighters was disscussed and it got me thinking. Over the years I have seen some real poor corners, some fighters seem to believe just bringing your mate along to shout smash him in the face is all you need of a corner team!

I have been lucky from day one, I have had an awesome team behind me who have taken the time to learn how to switch me on and get me mentally ready to get in the cage and compete. This is key. Corners should know their fighters intimately so they can bring them to the boil and send them out ready to do the job. For years I’ve struggled with nerves and trying to switch from Mr nice guy, to wanting to punch someone in the face. Over time, the team behind me worked different corner tactics to find what suited me as a fighter and found solutions to the problems I was experiencing.

I remember when I fought Dan Hardy I was sharing my warm up room with another fighter whose corners gave my corner team a slagging on the forums after the event for how long my warm up had lasted and that I was knackered by the end of it. Yet I went out and had a full 25min fight that is still seen in many peoples eyes as one of the greatest UK fights of all time, and their guy went out and lost rather quickly! This is an example of an uneducated corner team, they didnt realise that it took a long time for me to come to a boil (sometimes over 1 hour) and that I liked to get rid of my first wind. They just thought one structure of warming up suits all!!

So the point I am trying to get across is that each fighter is individual and a good corner team should be able to recognise their fighters needs. In order for a fighter to perform to their greatest potential they need to be warmed up and primed correctly!!

12 Gauge Signing off!!

Aftermath of a loss!!

Posted in Fighting and Competing on November 9, 2009 by matt12gauge

It has been a while since I last updated my blog, for which I apologise, a lot has happened since my last post. First off Team England went out to Rostov in Russia to take on Team Russian Legion in the M1 Challenge semi finals. Unfortunately for us, the Team lost 4-1 against a highly skilled team who came out with a clear game plan to use against us. I took on the UFC veteran Ansar Chalangov. He came out to take me down, which is what I expected, we got tangled in the ropes a little, so the ref pulled us off. At this point he got the takedown, I went for a triangle setup and he dived for a heel hook and cranked!! Game over for me!!

Now a loss to every fighter sucks arse and it is one of the hardest things for us to get over. Your first feelings are of quitting and being embarrassed about letting everyone down that has helped and trained you. This is the hardest part to overcome! and to be honest there have been times in my career where these thoughts have been allowed to run away with themselves and I have nearly packed it all in. Fighters have to realise that there has to be a winner and loser within the contest and MMA is a sport with a hell of a lot of ways to lose!! If you take a look at the champions at the top of the sport nearly all have tasted defeat and the age-old adage of you learn more from a loss than a win is true. You have to pick yourself up get back in the gym, analyse where you went wrong and try and patch up that hole in your game. It is an never ending learning process!

The use of a sports psychologist and NLP experts have helped me considerably, especially after a loss and they are something every fighter should be using. The mental aspect of the sport makes a large percent of the game and yet fighters neglect to train this aspect! would you neglect to train your boxing but still think you can slip a shot, counter then pivot off?? No, so why is it fighters feel that the mental side of a fight is so important yet neglect to train it!! Go out find yourself a decent sports psychologist/NLP expert read some books and build yourself a mental training program. Here are a couple I would recommend to get you started:

Some books to read:

Mind Gym –

The Complete Guide to Sport Motivation –

Like I said at the start a lot has happened since my last post. I have started my class at factory BJJ, which I will discuss in a separate blog, and launched my website check it out!

For now

12 Gauge signing off!!

A little busy……

Posted in Uncategorized on September 16, 2009 by matt12gauge

Had an extremely busy week, so just gonna keep you all upto date with what I have been upto. Check out the interview filmed at Quannum of me and my coach Aaron Chatfield on the build up to the M1 semi finals:

Channel M came down on Monday 14th to film my training for my upcoming fight. Started with my conditioning circuit at home and then filmed my Mrs cooking tea! They followed me down to the gym in the evening and filmed my pad work then sparring. They seemed to really enjoy it, the show was going to be 1 piece but they have said they will split it into 2 with the build upto the fight on 1 show and then bring me into the studio for the 2nd peice post fight. Will keep you guys informed of when this will air.

Also this week had the stockport Express and MEN newspapers come down and do a little interview with me and take some photos. Keep your eyes out for that piece to show up at the end of the week/some time next week hopefully.



I am starting an MMA class on Monday 5th October, covering all aspects of MMA.


at: Factory BJJ

Studio 1, Vauxhall Industrial Estate

Greg Street




For more info you can contact me at:


07514 884 037


Finally a couple of links for you guys to check out. First off the coliseum forum:

and my temporary website:


12 Gauge signing off!!

A request….

Posted in 12 Gauge MMA, Training with tags , , , , on September 5, 2009 by matt12gauge

l_8fcdfbf2f5bbf554ce214b0d7adba391I have had a request to post up some of the conditioning circuits I follow so thought I would oblige. First I will give you a little insight into how I have arrived at where I am today in regards to my strength and conditioning programs I now follow and a couple of tips on how to train and what should be in your training program.

Over the years I have tried out and followed many programs with mixed results, most of the time I had no clue as to why I was doing what I was doing other than it was what every one else seemed to be following!! The training for my first fight consisted of me going for 3 long runs a week and lifting weights twice a week. Now a lot of guys that I speak to in the gym still do this sort of training for fights and dont see any problems with this, I ask them this question though “Is this training specific to your needs??” . I asked myself this very same question after my first fight and realised there was a lot for me to learn.

I have spent the last 7 years educating myself on this subject. I have read countless books and articles on the subject and still do. I have talked to experts and I have gone out and taken qualifications in order to improve my knowledge. Olympic athletes don’t leave their training to chance so why should you. In order for you to achieve the gains you want and require you have to:

  1. Specific – Your training has to be specific to the sport. You need to break down and understand the demands of your sport and what training is needed in order for you to improve. For example the training I did for my first fight was in no way sport specific, long slow distance does not emulate what I needed in a fight, there was no speed, power or strength training.
  2. Overload – You must train to overload in order to gain any increases. If you don’t train to overload your body will not adapt and their will be no gains. By overload I mean train to failure, the final reps of your final set you should be failing on. This then encourages your body to adapt (Super compensation) during the recovery phase and you will see gains within your training.
  3. Adapt/Change – Constantly change and adapt your training plan. It doesn’t take long for your body to adapt and get used to what you are doing therefore you need to change things up on a regular basis. This can just be little tweeks but you need your body to be constantly guessing if it gets used to your training you will plateau!
  4. Rest and Recovery – You have to have rest and recovery periods built into your training plan. Without time to recover and repair your body will fail you and no adaption will occur, you will over train!!
  5. Education – This is probably the most important point. You have to educate yourself, if you don’t take charge of your own training no one else will. There are thousands of books, articles, DVDs out there you can even hire a decent Personal Trainer in order to educate yourself! A couple of great places to start your education: and

Hopefully this will give you somewhere to start and ideas on how to train. Now down to the request of some examples of my conditioning workouts :

I like to split my training circuits into the rounds I will be fighting (Sport Specific) so for example the circuit I did the other day consisted of:

3×5 mins each round is broken down into minutes and you perform a different exercise for each minute.


1min – Fast 6-10 punch combo bag work allowing yourself to re-set after each combo this should be high intensity.

1min – Pull ups

1min – Medicine ball or a weight press above head and out infront of you 10 reps of each then repeat.

1min – Hold a weight out infront of you then perform steering wheels.

1min – Same as first minute.

Rest 30-60 seconds


1min – Shoots on a bungee or have some one hold you on a harness.

1min – Deep Squats with a medicine ball.

1min – step ups

1min – 30 seconds bunny hoping over a thai pad side to side then 30 seconds forward and backward.

1min – same as first minute.

Rest 30-60 seconds.


1min – Carry the bag for 20 seconds then slam and ground and pound for 40 seconds.

1min – Clean and press a sand bag.

1min – Burpee.

1min – Kettlebell/Dumbell swing or medicine ball slam.

1min – Same as first minute.

The great thing about this circuit is its easy to adapt to whatever your needs are. You can replace exercises as and when you need to and you can increase the intensity by adding more rounds and decreasing your rest time.

Here is an example of a hill sprint session I follow:

Find a steep hill with lamp posts on it. Your rounds will consist of sprint to the first lamp post jog back down, sprint to the second lamp post jog back down, sprint to the third lamp post jog back down and rest. I have a Heart rate monitor on and my rest period is dictated by this. I allow my HR to drop then repeat as above for 10 rounds. I usual finish this with 5x50m flat sprints with little rest in between.

Hopefully this is usefull to you guys.

Enjoy 12 Gauge signing off!

In the beginning….

Posted in Uncategorized on August 28, 2009 by matt12gauge

Latest M1 victory

What to write in your first post??? Now I am part of this new bloging craze I am not sure what to start with!!

I think I will start with the obvious, a bit about myself. First off I will apologise for my rubbish grammer and spelling it aint my strong point!!

I am a 28 year old professional cage/mma fighter who also holds down a full time job. I am married to my lovely wife Jennie who puts up with my crap moods and the fact I am never at home. I have been training in Martial Arts of  some sort for most of my life, I started in Tae-Kwon-Do when I was about 10 and then moved onto Kickboxing when I was about 15 but it wasn’t till I was 18 and met my future wife to be that I started training MMA and taking it more seriously!!

When I met my wife at college she was training at what she said was a Karate club, which I had no interest in at all, after 6 months of her nagging at me to come down to the club I finally caved in and said I would try a session out. I found that it was anything but Karate and that the club instructor (Phil Wright) had recently discovered MMA in the form of the UFC and had started playing around with grappling and the BJJ revolution! This new concept had me hooked and so started my lifelong obsession with MMA!

I trained with Phil for about 2 years when he was forced to close his gym, this led to me searching out several training options in order for me to improve my overall game. Over the next 8 years I spread my training out over an olympic freestyle wrestling club, BJJ club, Thai boxing club, Amatuer Boxing gym, Team Quannum and Team Coliseum MMA gyms in order to give myself a good grounding in all aspects of training and fighting. I also made several trips abroad to the US and Japan to train with some of the best in the world most notably the Miletich camp!

I was about 21 when I first got the itch to step in the ring/cage and test my skills, so after a discussion with my coaches at the Coliseum (Aaron Chatfield and Danny Wallace) I decided I was ready to take that step. Having no Amatuer scene in UK MMA at the time I was forced to step straight in at pro taking a fight on a show in Cornwall called the Xtreme Fighting Championships. I won this fight in the 1st round via rear naked choke and so started the competition bug. Over the next 8 years I competed on shows all over the UK such as Ultimate Combat, XFC, Pride and Glory, Cage Warriors and King of the Cage UK. I have also been lucky enough to compete internationally on shows such as Bodog and the M1 Challenge the latter of which I am currently active in as the Team England Middleweight. I hold notable wins over Che Mills former Cage Rage champion, Peter Angreer German Top Team member, Raman Jarman Shooto veteran and Yusuke Masuda DEEP veteran. I am mostly known, though, for my epic 5 round battle with Dan Hardy for the Cage Warriors Welterweight title. The fight went to a split decision but unfortunately for me it wasn’t my night and Dan edged it! This fight has been classed as one of the greatest fights in UK MMA history and I was proud to be part of it!

So we are pretty much up to date. Like I said previously I am currently part of the M1 England team being coached by Aaron Chatfield and Dave Butlin. We have just defeated Team Spain to secure our place in the semi-finals which are to be held in Russia, September 26th where we face the Russian legion.

Signing off!

12 Gauge