The UK has produced a plethora of world class combat athletes with a particularly rich history within the sport of boxing. It was only when a young Leeds resident by the name of Liam Harrison stepped in to the famous Bad Company Gym, that the UK began to create a strong presence in the world of Muay Thai. Since making his Muay Thai debut at the tender age of 14, Liam has competed all over the world through many of the worlds top combat promotions. Following his debut, he has stepped over the ropes a further 114 times, collecting 8 world championships and multiple athlete of the year awards in the process. Pamorn Martdee sits down with Liam to discuss the training habits and the mindset he has built on his journey from debutant to world champion.
Liam has enjoyed an illustrious career thus far. But in more recent times, he has been in the form of his life. Winning five of his last six fights, Liam has shot up the WMC and WBC Muay Thai rankings and placed himself in contention for the prestigious One Championship World Title. Government restrictions on gym facilities around the globe could easily put a halt to the training and progress for Liam as it has done for so many. But as he explains to Pamorn, he refuses to let his body of hard work be diminished so easily. Still willing to train twice a day through the troubling times of a pandemic, it is easy to understand how Liam has achieved the status of world champion eight times over. Whilst acknowledging that he is fortunate to still be able to train with his strength and conditioning coach through the powers of the internet as well as his partner, who is a 2 time national champion herself, Liam strongly confirms that he would remain active should his current position not be so fortunate. He states, “I’d still be shadowboxing in the backyard” even without such luxuries available.
For the professional athlete, training to improve the physical aspect of your performance is essential. But there are many other aspects to consider. In investigating the varying factors that can contribute to the success of an athlete, Liam touches on the importance of mental drive. Offering listeners a harsh dose of reality, Harrison says, “you can have all the physical attributes in the world, but if you don’t have the mental attributes to go with it, you’ll only get so far”.
Becoming a world champion is the pinnacle for a competitor. From achieving such a feat many times over, Liam has a deep understanding of the commitment required to get there. Approaching the later stages of his long and distinguished career, Harrison is wisely aware that an athlete has a shelf life. He admits that having restrictions imposed on his regular training regime has been a bitter pill to swallow. Unwilling to let go of the positive position his relentless hard work has put him in, it is amazing to hear Liam describe how he is doing everything possible to remain on track with the indefinite restrictions in place. He explains, “my goals are the same as they were before things happened”, which is the driving force to continue training and stay focused. In doing so, Liam will be able to compete at the earliest date possible once the standard of life has returned to the norm. He continues to describe the goals he has set for himself in high detail which offers a fascinating insight into the thought process and the work ethic Liam possesses.
In just 40 minutes, the light at the end of the tunnel is burning bright as Liam and Pamorn put things into perspective. In a time when control appears to be relinquished, making proactive adjustments and introducing a positive thought process will assist in staying inspired. If a spark is needed, the career and the mentality of Liam “The Hitman” Harrison is as inspiring as it gets.
Relive the moments Co-founder and co-director Whitney Tuna wins her second state championship after her second knee reconstruction in five years!
Whitney Tuna is a two time state Muay Thai Champion. Hailing from Perth Western Australia, Tuna found Muay Thai after her teenage years of partying, gaining excessive weight and losing confidence.
Since starting Muay Thai nearly ten years ago, Tuna has broken the mould for women being a role model for positive lifestyle, leading by example as not only a women’s health ambassador, but fierce competitor in the ring. She has won the WMC light bantamweight state title and most recently, the ISKA light bantamweight state title defeating Mikyla Baggstrom-Wild.
Despite her battles in the ring facing some of the best in Australia in her quest to become Australian champion, Tuna has suffered two knee reconstructions in the past five years. Through sheer willpower, determination, focus and hunger, she has bounced back to prove she has much more to give to the game that has given her so much. Whitney has defeated emerging stars such as Tia Steinhardt (QLD), Jada Ketley (QLD), Michelle Seivers (WA), Niki King (WA) and Spring Sia (VIC).
Keep an eye out for Whitney Tuna as she looks to solidify herself as one of the best in the country!
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