6 Characteristics of a Young Champion

Warrior Muay Thai located in Toronto is one of Canada's top gym's. They are home to a number of champions including Amin Almelik who is a 10-time champion with international experience. The gym is owned and coached by Kru Zubair Khan. Kru Zubair Khan is also a senior recruitment advisor at the University Health Network. We decided to catch up with him to see what are the characteristics that he looks for for to build the next champ. 

1 - Attitude, Drive & Work Ethic

Attitude, dive and work ethic are the most important elements of a young champion. These characteristics are the fundamental building blocks to success; in the ring and in life. Other factors such aggression, athleticism, experience or body type can be developed. However, attitude, drive and work ethic is something that must be present. An athletic fighter whom relies on his natural abilities during training may never step outside of his comfort zone. They may succeed in his first 3 - 4 fights as an amateur, however as they progress, similarly in life, it is inevitable that obstacles arise. The individual who has relied on talent, and not hard work will not be comfortable when they are tested. Therefore, when it comes time to push and grind they will be taken into deep waters and drown quickly.

"Its not about how hard you can hit, but how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward!" - Rocky Balboa

2 - Coach Ability

Coach ability and being able to listen to direction is critical. Teachers are where they are because they have experience and knowledge. Fighting is not a sport where you want to learn and gain your experience in the ring. You want to listen to your coach, train hard, and when you step into the ring to fight, you already have the necessary experience. Finding out that you should have listened to your coach in the ring (during a fight) is a very cruel way learn and often can cause permanent physical and emotional damage to the person. It is not uncommon, that a unprepared fighter who thinks they are ready to step into a match comes out and decides that muay thai/boxing is no longer for them.

Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win- Sun Tzu, The Art of War

2 - Time Commitment/Commitment to put in  work 

If we walked down the street and asked "Do you want to be a Champion?" or "Do you want to make 6 figures?" the answer is probably yes. That question however isn't important, what you need to ask is "Are you willing to pay the necessary price in full prior to achieving what you want to achieve?" Most often the answer people will tell you yes, but their actions will show you no. If you asked them, why they would tell you a bunch excuses.

For example: 
1) I am too busy
2) I want to party
3) Because I work a full-time job
4) Because my girlfriend wants to hang out.

All of these things are excuses. In order to achieve anything in life, there are no short cuts. You must pay the price of your goal in full before achieving it. Proper time commitment is a staple for success. 

3 - Attention to Detail

In life as well as muay thai the difference between success and failure can often be broke down into tiny, small almost insignificant details. When two fighters exchange hooks, the 1 fighter who has his hands down by 1 inch will get knocked out. In life, if a lawyer forgets 1 word in a legal document, it can change the direction of his case. If a develop quotes a job based on one floor when he has included 100 floors in his quote, then the company will probably bankrupt. The ability to pay attention to the small fine details are signs of a champion. 

4 - Team Work

When an athlete competes, it is an individual event. However, the fight is the easiest part of fighting. It lasts between 6 - 15 minutes depending on skill level. Training however, takes months of hard work. It takes running 5 - 8 km in whatever conditions are there (Snow, Hail, Rain, Sunshine) 5 - 6 times a week as a pre warm up. The power of a team is that you can have people there to train with you and to push you when you need it. In addition, when you are fighting, although you are in the ring by yourself, when you see a huge group of people supporting you, it makes you fight harder.

Kru (Coach) Zubair is the owner and head coach at Warrior Muay Thai. As head coach Kru Zubair teachest his students to be adaptable and creative. He brings over 20 years of experience in martial arts to his team. He has 1 of the most successful competitive teams in North America with numerous multiple time provincially and nationally ranked athletes. He instills a sense of respect and a foundation for every student in the gym. ru Zubair Khan is also a senior recruitment advisor at the University Health Network.