E-Interview with Amateur Fighter Jason Stanley

In my continuing effort to let you all know about some fighters you should know and watch for, I'd like to introduce you to Jason Stanley, fighting out of Ashland, KY. I first met Jason and saw him fight at the Kentucky Fighting Challenge #44 in Mt. Sterling. Check out my write up on that here (Fight Number Four).

Jason trains out of Stephens Vale Tudo in Ashland, KY. Check out their website here, and you can find them on Myspace here.

To find out more about Jason, check after the jump.

That's Jason. First, I want to say thanks to Jason for being willing to speak with me after his fight, and for doing this interview. As I said in my KYFC write-up, Jason is a guy to watch out for. In my opinion, he's got a long career ahead of him, and I'm interested to see where it goes.

What initially inspired you to get into the fight game?

My father boxed when he was younger and I think that is what sparked my initial interest in the fight game. I also remember watching UFC 1 with a good friend of mine and fell in love with MMA then. Although my training for MMA didn’t start until much after.

What is your current record?
MMA record: 2-0 Grappling record: 12 to 15 wins 5 losses (approximately)

In what promotions have you fought?
Kentucky Fighting Challenge

In what weight class do you normally fight? Have you ever fought outside that weight class?
I have done most fights at 170 but have had both MMA fights at 185.

What is your training background and in what do you currently train and where?
My training background has been mostly in BJJ, but I have done some wrestling and MMA training

Do you have a job in addition to fighting?
I work as a Registered Nurse at a local hospital in the area.

If so, are you able to do a typical “training camp” before a fight, and if so, how long does that generally last?
I just recently quit my fulltime Monday thru Friday job as a RN to allow me to train on a more fulltime basis. I would prefer to have 3-4 weeks notice before a fight. Most guys may prefer more training time however I keep my training fairly intense even without a set fight date.

What was your job before fighting?
My fulltime job was also as a RN at a local long term care facility. I was the Staff Development Coordinator and had many responsibilities including scheduling, educational inservices to the other nurses, and I also taught a class to certify employees as state registered nurse aids here in Kentucky.

How closely do you monitor your diet when preparing for a fight?
I have to monitor my diet closely all the time. My body prefers to be 185 and I like to fight at 170. No French fries or cheese burgers lol

Are there any supplements you take?
Lots of protein and multivitamins.

What’s an average day of training like for you?
First workout of the day usually involves a weight training session that takes about an hour and also involves some plyometrics. After that I have a BJJ class at SVT that lasts about an hour and a half. Depending on what day it is there is either a core workout(mostly low back and ab work) or density conditioning(timed sessions doing heavy bag ground and pound or flipping a tractor tire, or some other creative workout that Aaron has dreamed up) Then in the evening there is usually another BJJ class or a cardio kickboxing class.

Who do you typically train with before a fight?
Just with my instructor Aaron Stephens and the other guys in our camp. We have some really talented guys in our camp that really push me and help me in my training.

What kind of mental preparations do you go through for before a fight?
Not much. This is an area I really need to work on. I think the only way to get past the mental aspect is just by competing as much as possible. The more experience the better.

Is there one particular training aspect you single out as being more important than the others?
Cardio! The more the better.

What is your normal pre-fight routine?
I usually will have to cut several pounds of weight the day before the fight. I usually do this by doing a light cardio session while wearing a sauna suit and a sweat suit. I am very dehydrated afterwards so I prefer to weigh in as soon as possible. After that it’s on to Applebees to eat and rehydrate. The rest of the evening is just usually rest and relaxation until the fight. I will usually eat a couple more times and continue to rehydrate.

At this point in your career, if there’s one fight you could do over again, which would it be?
I don’t know if there is one I wish I could do over. I have learned from all of them. I probably learned the most from the ones I lost.

To date, what do you consider to be your biggest achievement in fighting?
September 1st, of this year when I decided to follow a dream and pursue fighting on a more fulltime basis.

What is your favorite technique?
Don’t know if I have a favorite but I have done well with the ground and pound.

Before fighting in MMA, did you compete in any other combat sports (i.e. BJJ) and if so, in what tournaments did you compete and how did you place in those tournaments?
I have competed in the NAGA Arnold Classic in 2007 and 2008 and placed in the top 3 both years in the no gi divisions. Also just recently competed in the first Sinister tournament in Louisville and placed first no gi and third in gi.

It seems like fighters are being sponsored by companies from all industries – at any given event, you’ll see logos for mortgage companies, energy drinks and the ever present Condom Depot emblazoned across a number of fighters’ asses – do you think this kind of exposure helps or hurts the sport?
I don’t think it hurts the sport. It gives companies the chance to do some effective marketing and helps the fighters with some additional income/free gear. It all helps.

As an amateur fighter, do you find that you have a harder time finding sponsors, or have you tried to find sponsors?
I haven’t pursued any sponsors as of yet, but it is something we are looking into.

As an amateur fighter, do you find that you have to do a lot of self-promotion to get your name out there, and if so, what kind of things do you do to achieve that goal?
Umm, well, I am pretty new to the fight game and I think I need to get a few more wins and a more solid foundation before looking into any promotion.

Who is your agent and/or manager?
Aaron Stephens – Agent / Coach / Manager.

Do you have aspirations of turning pro?

If so, how long, or after how many more fights do you think it will it take to do that?
I am not in a hurry. I want to get several more amateur fights in first

How do you feel about organizations like the American Fight League (AFL) out of Louisville?
Have heard some good things, but don’t know a lot about them.

Do you think that promotions like this that start on a local level will ever be able to compete with organizations like the UFC?
With the right promotional strategies and marketing you never know what might happen.

Junie Allen Browning, out of Four Seasons in Lexington, KY, recently made headlines because he landed a spot on Season 8 of The Ultimate Fighter – what do you think this kind of exposure does for MMA in Kentucky?
I think that it does a lot for Kentucky MMA. Four Seasons is a good school and I am sure they have many talented guys. Browning looks great in the cage and he looks like he is off to a bright future in the UFC. I just have a feeling that being under the “microscope” of a reality show can be very tough for a person. The more things get crazy, the better the ratings are. I could only guess that that kind of world can be really hard to deal with sometimes.

A number of websites publish the fighters’ salaries after events along with the winners of bonuses such as the UFC Fight of the Night, KO of the Night and Submission of the Night bonuses, and they do it with a disclaimer that the figures don’t include costs of medical examinations, travel and the like – what kind of expenses do you deal with as a fighter that most people wouldn’t know about?
As an amateur you don’t get paid so there are a lot of expenses. Most of the fights are not close to home and there are expenses like gas, hotel costs, food. Good equipment is a must, this includes gloves, headgear, athletic equipment, fight clothing, and much more.

In your opinion, who is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world?
Tough question. Maybe George St. Pierre or Anderson Silva

Who are some fighters, past or present, that you admire?
Sean Sherk, Randy Couture, Forrest Griffin, Anderson Silva, George St. Pierre, many more.

The sport seems to be getting more exposure and as a result, becoming more accepted across society – where do you see the sport in five years?
I think the sport will be bigger and more accepted. I think it will push boxing into the background.

What kind of hobbies do you enjoy in your down time?
What down time? Lol. I used to enjoy the X-Box. I don’t know if I would even remember how to turn one on. I enjoy hanging out with friends and family.

How do you your family and friends feel about your fighting career?
Mom hates it lol. I don’t have a lot of family support but it’s my dream and I love it. Hey if it doesn’t work there is always nursing.

Thank you for all this, Jason – is there anyone you’d like to thank?
I would like to thank Aaron Stephens for all my training and his coaching. I would also like to thank Spring for all her hard cardio she has put me through. Magan for all her wonderful support and for putting up with me. My family for their limited support, lol. Kenny Diamond for him helping me set up my fights. All of my training partners in our SVT Family – those who have sweat and bled with me to help all of us get to the next level(s). Especially Travis, Casey, Ryan, Daniel, Bill, Russell, and Zack. Thanks to my friends Dave, Derek, Drew, and Johnathan. Thanks to you PreView for this opportunity and the kind words you have spoken about me.
So there you have it. Jason is an exciting fighter and an intelligent guy and if you happen to be in the KY area on November first, you can check him out at the Xplosive Caged Combat show in Brandenburg, KY. Check out the XCC here.

Check back here later for more updates on Jason as he continues working his way up the amateur ladder on his way to a pro debut.


1 comment:

Robert Brady said...

Jason, do you have problems with a sauna suit lasting very long. Have you ever tried the super sauna suit?