IKF... THE BOOK...
ONE FIGHTER & THE
How A Single Moment In Time
Can Motivate One To Continue To Be Persistent
And Change The Game
Anyone here remember those things called "Magazines?"
For fight sports, there were some pretty good ones that are no longer
around anymore such as Ring Report (Gone, More of a News Letter)
International Kickboxer (Out of Australia - Not sure if there still
doing an actual paper produced magazine), Vincit (Gone, made in
CA) Ultimate Athlete (Gone, The best one) and others...
For those too young to know, there was
indeed life before the internet...
It was created with paper and made into
a magazine, and many of us old timers loved each and every new edition, couldn't
wait till we got it in our hands and looked through it to learn more about our
I remember when the IKF
had plans to advance what was previously called "The Book"
into an actual IKF Kickboxing magazine
back in 2003. The Book was my idea of getting fighter's the much needed exposure
they needed and deserved to get them known in the fight game and also get their
names out there for promoters around the world to see to get them fight
Prior to the creation of the book, which was 8
x 11 pieces of paper folded in half and book stapled together, no one had ever
done amateur rankings for kickboxing and Muay Thai and even to this day, the
IKF is still the only place you will find
Amateur Rankings. My goal or desire was to include trainers names (Many, if
they knew a fighter, had no idea who trained them) and their contact phone
numbers listed with them so promoters could book them for fights. I also felt it
would be important to include their current fight records, height, date of birth
and where they were located. This was a Major change in the kickboxing game
because prior to the book, promoters had to do a lot of work just to get in
contact with a fighter's trainer let alone get factual information about the
fighter. The Book solved a lot of issues and basically changed the game as far
as matchmaking went. Bouts were now created and booked in a matter of hours
where as before, it took weeks to put just one bout together.
However, before one saw the end product of
each of the IKF monthly books, like the
Iceberg theory, what no one ever saw was what was under the surface which was
hours and days of exhausted work in typing out on a Mac Apple Computer
with a 7 inch screen (Yes, "Seven") creating each monthly
edition that always included fighter rankings, fighter details / stats, bout
results, event results, articles about fighters, training, people of the sport
etc. etc... Basically, it was the IKF
website in a book.
At the time, I was still running a full time
martial arts school with over 450 students. However, what few knew is that it
was that martial arts school that funded all those beginning years of the IKF.
Doing these books was a lonely job, and I
don't mean lonely as in the IKF was the
only sanctioning body doing such work, I mean lonely as in, all this work was
done by just me...
These were not the busiest of times for the
IKF. During these first several years from
1992 till about 1996-97, we may have only done 1 event a month. It wasn't until
we created our web site in 1997 that we basically exploded in growth, mainly
because of our new ideas, mainly being current news, pre event press and of
course, the Rankings.
Those lonely hours and days were spent
creating news content, cut and pasting graphics, fight photos, coordinating the
pages each month. And keep in mind, these were being made every month. The books
grew up to over 50 pages in size, packed with all kinds of Kickboxing and Muay
Thai news and information.
After all the physical work of putting the
master copy together, I'd run it to our local copy store and have them make a
few hundred copies. The majority of these were sent out monthly for Free
literally all around the world to those who had given me their mailing list
while the remainder were given out free at whatever event or events we had that
particular month. As I said above, if not for my martial arts school, there were
no funds to produce these books. Not including the hours and hours of labor to
create them, hard cost of materials, copies and monthly mail outs came to a few
thousand dollars every month. However, I knew the sacrifice would pay of, we
just need to make sure we were persistent in making sure every month, we had a
new edition created.
Being persistent though was no easier than a
fighter having the discipline to train every day. I remember a certain week when
I was basically just exhausted, and honestly thought I was done with all the
work and expense of making these every month... I had all but made up my mind to
stop doing them... Until a conversation with a fighter changed my entire
At the time, Dan Stell was training
kickboxers at my gym and one of Dan's students was a guy named Mike
Dougherty. This particular week Mike had asked if he could get this
months edition, so I handed it to him and said "Keep it, this might be
the last one." he looked at me like a deer in headlights and said "No
way! Really?" I went on to explain to him all the cost and work that
went into making them, how 100% of that cost was from my martial arts school, or
basically, out of my pocket. That I was just tired of doing them and basically,
losing more and more money every month. Then... it was what he said next that
basically, Kept the IKF moving forward...
And this is HONESTLY what he said...
"You can't stop making them. We
need these books, it's the only way I know who I'm shooting for as a fighter
trying to move up the rankings. I mean, I actually take my book to the bathroom
and sit and read it while I'm in there. Sometimes I get so involved my wife asks
me if I'm ok. You can't stop!"
So, there's the story...
ONE GUY and his passion for "The Book" may be the very
reason the IKF is still here today.
Dougherty of Loomis, CA now lives in Reno Nevada. He was trained by Dan
Stell and later by Greg Kirkpatrick and he went on after our talk to
win two IKF Amateur Titles.
On October 21st, 1995
he won the IKF Amateur International Rules USA Light
He defeated Julio Nunez of Albq. New Mexico, by
Unanimous decision 50-44, 49-45 and 48-46.
On April 27th, 1996
he won the IKF Amateur Full Contact Rules USA Light Heavyweight
He defeated Heath Harris of San Diego, California, by
Unanimous decision 48-45, 48-45 and 49-45.
Speaking of magazines though...
I often wonder if the IKF
ever did a magazine, if it would be worth it.
We had thought so back in
2003, but after long discussions about it, we decided to invest into the IKF Kickboxing TV Program.
To read more about
that project, CLICK HERE.