I have worked around the world as a Strength & Conditioning coach in professional and International Rugby Union and Rugby League. Having lived and worked in New Zealand, USA, and Romania, I've taken my love of Martial Arts training with me and learned from different coaches in each country.
Originally, I went to University to become a physiotherapist. Luckily, a presentation by the Professor in Exercise Science in one of our classes convinced me to make a change as soon as my first semester of studies were completed.
I completed my Bachelor's degree and continued on to complete my Masters in Sport and Exercise Science.
From that Masters, I was able to publish two academic research journals to the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research in the area of Power-Force-Velocity Profiling and Tapering in Professional Rugby League.
Much of my Strength & Conditioning career has been in the sport of Rugby Union and Rugby League. I used to have my own Sport's Academy in Auckland, New Zealand where I trained athletes from many sports such as sailing, motocross, boxing, kickboxing, cricket, and triathlon to name a few.
I started my coaching career in New Zealand with a bunch of different amateur Rugby League teams while I was interning with a professional team.
From there I landed my first full-time gig in Romania. Safe to say, I was stoked! Sadly, the corruption there meant I came home early from that contract.
Luckily, through my time working in NZ, I started working with our National Women's Rugby League side for the NRL 9s and ANZAC test which we won crowning us Trans-Tasman champions.
From here, I was offered my first taste of the United States working in the newly professional competition the Major League Rugby where I spent 2 great years.
We won the National Championship as the Austin Huns in the first year. From there, I was offered to come back to Romania but this time to work with the National team leading up to the Rugby World Cup.
I couldn't say no to an opportunity like that. Sadly, Romania was disqualified from the World Cup prior to making it over there but the experience has been invaluable.
Along the way, I've published, podcasted, and been actively involved in the sport science research landscape.
Currently, I review three new strength & conditioning research journals each month for Science for Sport for their Performance Digest.
I've also published articles on:
Typing away on the keyboard isn't the only way I contribute. I've also been featured on a few podcasts:
As with most Strength & Conditioning coaches, we become coaches because we couldn't make it as athletes. Plus we love the science behind training and helping other athletes succeed to their highest potential.
I played ball sports all through my youth and teens. It wasn't until my early 20s when I started competing in Olympic Weightlifting and eventually finding my other sporting love, Jiu-Jitsu.
I competed at the National level in Olympic Weightlifting but with my coaching career and moving countries, that's as far as I got with it.
I found BJJ through a friend at the gym who taught me and couple of friends for free. We trained twice a week no-gi and entered our first tournament fresh after 4-5 months of training. That tournament was the NZ Nationals.
I won my first match but lost my second. I had caught the bug BJJ bug. That was all that mattered.
When I moved to Romania, I started training under black belt Catalin Vlad who runs Matside Romania. This my first taste of training in the Gi. I trained 1-2x a week when my schedule allowed and made slow progress.
It wasn't until I moved to USA where I was able to really dedicate time into my BJJ training at Brazilian Top Team under Ruy Frade. I earned my blue belt under Ruy in Austin training 4-5x a week and loving every minute of it.
I competed in the Austin open as a white belt where I won my first match and lost my second. Competing is a different beast to training! I love the Martial Arts. This is why I started this website. To spread scientific training knowledge related to the Martial Arts that can be used in your own training. I will be bringing in coaches and researchers in the Martial Arts field to share their knowledge with you making this the authority on Martial Arts and Combat Sports training.
James de Lacey
Shadowboxing has stood the test of time as a boxing drill. And for good reason. It allows you to train for your martial art with no equipment or partner.Shadowboxing is an exercise used by martial artists to practice techniques and improve their conditioning. It doesn't require any equipment or partners so you can shadowbox wherever and whenever making it one of the most versatile boxing drills. While shadowboxing may not
James de Lacey
So, you’ve landed your next fight! Whether it’s your first or your tenth, there is always room to make improvements to your fight preparation. Many make the mistake of training poorly year-round then starting a “fight camp” 8 weeks out where volume and intensity skyrocket as they try to get in shape.Don't be like these fighters. Lay your foundation year-round and once you're ready to prepare for an upcoming fight,
James de Lacey
The punch is a key component of various combat sports. Punching is a complex motion that involves movement of the arm, trunk, and legs with the lower body considered a primary contributor to an effective punch . Previous research has reported that punching impact force is the main performance indicator in amateur boxing and paramount to a fighter’s victory [1, 2]. Research is scarce in regards to how to punch