Team Quest Comes to Encinitas

Team Quest Encinitas – Sokoudjou

Besides training at The Arena this summer, I worked out at Team Quest as well!  A few months ago, they opened a Team Quest in my own backyard, run by judo champ and pro MMA fighter Sokoudjou.  I was super excited when I saw the TQ signs go up by the Dairy Queen in Encinitas, and I knew I had to check the gym out.  I had already met Sokoudjou once before at a WEC weigh-in and the thought of training with a guy who knocked out Minotoro, Arona, and Bob Sapp was kinda crazy.

I usually have to go somewhere far away to train, like Oceanside, Vista, or Downtown San Diego, but this was right in my home town.  They were not all about the money and agreed to let me sign up for just the summer, since I wouldn’t be able to go once school/wrestling started.  At first I was coming to the gym about two or three times a week and spending the other days skating, but eventually I was there everyday for two to three hours at a time cause it was so much fun.

Coach Anthony Day, Jr.

Like a kid in a candy store, I didn’t know what to do first, so I trained boxing, submission wrestling, Muay Thai, judo, BJJ, tactical stretching, plus did lots of strength & conditioning.  The main boxing coach was Anthony Day Jr.  He runs the gym and is an amazing teacher.  Plus he’s always blasting great music like “It’s a Fight” by Three 6 Mafia!  Everyone there is nice, but Coach Anthony is an unbelievably cool person.  For example, I came early one Sunday and no one else was there.  Coach Anthony put me through Sokoudjou S&C workout for almost an hour.  It was hella hard but, I loved it!

I did submission wrestling with Ryan Bixler an Iowa wrestler with about 50 pro fights – he’s a beast and lots of fun to wrestle!  I had two Muay Thai instructors, Byron Schnell and Ikaika Patria.  They had different styles of teaching, but both were very effective and both excellent teachers.  Ikaika always made me laugh and is half Japanese like me.  Sensei Tim Mount worked with me on Judo which was always fun.  Coach Tim is a great instructor who trained under Master Coach Gerald Lafon of Judo America.

Belt Ceremony with Coach Renato Diaz

Renato Diaz, my Jiu Jitsu Sensei, was the instructor I probaby worked with the most.  I spent a lot of time training with him, because our team was preparing to compete in a BJJ tournament.  Plus he is a great instructor, a very talented, successful BJJ competitor and a super chill person.  I was surprised when I found out he was a special-ops guy in the Brazilian military and could kill you about 100 different ways if he wanted!  He promoted me to orange belt by the end of the summer.

Maybe the coolest thing I learned there was Tactical Flexibility with Neal Warren.  He blended traditional yoga with the latest in sports science to come up with one of the toughest conditioning programs I’ve ever done.  I still try to do some of the stuff he taught me at least once a week.

It was an amazing experience spending the summer training at TQ Encinitas.  You would be lucky to have just one of those teachers, but to be able to train with all of them in one place was pretty incredible – kinda like a modern day Shaolin Temple!  I miss the coaches and students there and hope I can go back again next summer to train.


~ by kidfighter on September 18, 2011.

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