Jamie Bates is a professional kickboxer, training out of MASAC Gym.
We spoke to Jamie to find out a little bit about his favourite gear and training advice.
Hi Jamie, before we get started, do you want to give us a quick summary about yourself?
My name is Jamie Bates, I’m 27 from County Durham England, I represent the MASAC Gym, in ranked number 1 -80 and -78kg in the U.K. and I’m currently signed in a two fight deal with Glory Kickboxing.
So to start off with, what would you say stands out most as your favourite piece of fight gear?
My favourite piece of equipment has to be my Rival Boxing Gloves. I wear the Rival RS1 16oz lace up version. I use them for everything from sparring to pads and bag work. I’ve used every glove out there but there’s no glove like them for protecting your hands.
How long have you been using those, or other products from the same brand?
I don’t actually own any other Rival products. I’m thinking about investing in a pair of the Rival RS11 Velcro 16oz but other than that I tend to use any brand that feels comfortable.
What was the reason behind you getting those particular ones in the first place?
I chose the Rival 16oz lace ups because I couldn’t get a good fit out of any other glove. I find the Thai style gloves to hold your knuckle too low and the Reyes sparring gloves messed my hands up. I originally picked up the Rival gloves and wanted those, but the fight shop owner talked me into the Reyes. After 3 months I switched to Rival and I’ve been using them ever since for about 3 years now.
What would you say are the stand-out features of them and what makes them better than other brands?
The stand out feature I would say is that for me they hold my hand perfectly in the glove. My knuckles are across the top of the glove so it feels natural when you punch. The lace up system is great for your wrist and the padding gives you great protection on impact.
With your fight gear, do you tend to stick to a few select brands, or do you like to mix it up with a nice variety?
With my fight gear I will use what ever is comfortable and gives good protection. I’m not into buying all these expensive brands for the labels, labels mean shit when you’re fighting.
Is there any other gear you just love to use when training?
I’ve been using some of the Sidekick range and you can find it at www.sidekickboxing.co.uk. The kids especially love it at the gym, they’ve got some really cool designs and the gear is great.
How much of your training is dedicated to martial arts/technique training and how much is dedicated to other aspects such as cardio, strength and conditioning?
My belief when it comes to training, is that if you stay in condition all of the time general conditioning with regards to running, sprints long distance etc and general cardio training can take a more relaxed approach. There’s nothing more specific than pads, bags and sparring for a fighter. I generally get my technical work out while I’m fresh during the day then S&C, running etc on a night, you can be fittest fighter on the planet but if you don’t understand how to fight it means very little.
What are your thoughts on sparring – Should you go in hard and heavy, or keep it light and technical?
I love a tear up in sparring as much as anyone else. I have sparring partners where I know if I give them a dig they see the red mist and it’s on! But at the same time you have to be sensible your not going to have a long career with brain damage and you can’t fight with injuries. It’s important to know your sparring with guys who want the conditioning and technique like yourself so you don’t have to worry about damage limitation throughout the session.
What pushes you to do your best during training?
Winning is what pushes me. I have to keep winning, I only train to win I don’t train to take part, so if I’m going to put my self through hell its all got to be worth it!
And finally what’s your best training tip for aspiring fighters out there?
Train safe and train smart, without your body being in the best shape possible you won’t get the maximum potential out of it.
Use quality safety equipment, spend money on physio treatment, keep sparring sensible and don’t blow up between fights – keep your weight sensible.
Thanks for your time, Jamie!