PART 2.. CFS (CAGE FIGHTER SYNDROME)
I spoke about WFS (Wannabe Fighter Syndrome) on my last blog and now to the more intricate of the Syndromes… Cage Fighter Syndrome (CFS) I split these two subject up as although there’s a lot of similarities between them, they are also quite different and This way you can easily digest the wisdom I humbly impart to you.
Ok lets go, first off what is CFS? A CFS sufferer is a man, who after having a couple of fights starts to think of himself as the Tsunami of the MMA World, destroying anyone unfortunate enough to be in his path, only leaving broken people and minds in his wake.
The major difference between CFS (Cage Fighter Syndrome) and WFS (Wannabe Fighter Syndrome) is that CFS Sufferers do actually fight, where as WFS just talk about it (if you don’t know what a WFS is- please read part one of this blog). Think of CFS as a slightly upgraded version of a WFS.
As much as it pains me to say this, and it does have to be said, they have to be given a bit of respect. Say what you will about them, they do get in there and fight. Whether they fight with Skill and flair or in a panicky, clumsy unabashed, wind-milling sort of way is another matter but they do get in there to fight, which in it’s self is a hard thing to do.
I think CFS first starts occurring when said fighter, after training a while, fancies getting in the ring/cage and pitting his skills in the Ultimate Arena of Manliness… The MMA Cage, which lets face it, is not only scary but possibly damaging, not only to their health but also to their the ego. To protect the latter, which in males can be a noticeably fragile and delicate thing (if you don’t believe me ask any female who knows you). I believe you build up a kind of fortress to protect this delicate and valuable of instruments.
I consider myself a very realistic person who can see things for what they are, however I remember way back when I first started MMA, Rolling, Sparring etc. I had only been ‘training’ For a couple of weeks and then happened to watched the likes of Nog and Fedor ( on you guessed it.. DVD’S) and I remember thinking “yeah ok I get it they’re better than me, but I’m not a million miles away”… Oh Dear!!! How very wrong I was! I remember my first ever fight, I thought to myself ” let’s just get in there and see if I can do this”. I remember that in the fight I was slipping, fainting, pitting together a few combos, I was pretty much nailing it… I won… I was excited!!.. I then watched the DVD back and I’ll never forget the shock I got from what I saw. Instead of a light footed better looking version of Van Damme, I was watching what seemed to be a confused tired person, falling at my opponent with all the grace and skill of a drunken bear on ice skates.. I was truly shocked at what I saw and I really do consider myself to be well grounded. After I saw this I WOKE UP and realised this MMA thing wasn’t quite as easy as I had thought it to be..
Some people (CFS sufferers) never ‘wake up’… They never take off the Rose tinted glasses and see themselves subjectively. Maybe that’s because if they did take off the shades of rosiness they would realise they are at a much lesser level in MMA than they think they are and the already scary world of this Sport somehow gets that much more scarier. So they keep those tinted glasses firmly in place, as it keeps the ego safe and warm, large and intact.
This is where it gets complicated. Every fighter has, and HAS to have an element of CFS because you have to believe you CAN win and in some cases you’re out gunned, out matched and all you have is that belief.. You can be anything you want to be if you believe it in your head, and you need to believe in yourself when you do MMA or any sport, but what i’m trying to show in my first fight example is don’t let that positive mental outlook turn into Self denial and a general unhealthy belief that your the seconding coming of Chuck Norris!
Now as much as i can understand a lot of things, one thing i don’t understand and puzzles me most is Something you might recognise and Is what i consider to be one of the most spine tinglingly cringe worthy things CFS Sufferers do, They push the boundaries of absurdness by not only slagging off other fighters, but incredibly, much better fighters than themselves! It’s all tied in with them being disillusioned.. In one case that comes to mind, A sufferer of CFS (who shall remain faceless) started commenting that Alistair Overeem’s stand up was overrated, this was after he (Alistair) had won the K1 HW Tournament!! At the time the deluded CFS sufferer in question had only a handful of Wins. He is so far removed from reality at this point, that when i see comments like this, it makes my soul cringe for them.
Another story I have to share with you, and I swear every word is god’s honest truth, was when the world’s worst ever CFS sufferer that has surely existed (he was almost flat lining due to being riddled with the disease so bad), managed to corner me and explain to me, in great worrying detail, that he genuinely thought he was the re-incarnation of Bruce Lee. Upon hearing this I literally spat my protein shake out and went to congratulate him on making me laugh, however there was no congratulations to be had, as all that met me was the steely eyed glare of insanity. The CFS sufferer in question, didn’t even blink or react and just continued with his diatribe of nonsense. This sufferer was the king, no god, of all CFS sufferers, your more common a garden sufferer’s however, are like the the David Brents (lead role- in the UK version of ‘The Office’) of the MMA world.
So what the solution? The solution my friends is REALITY and trying to keep those with CFS in it.. but this in it self is a difficult issue. If someone would have opened my eyes and given me a dose of reality back when I started MMA ten years ago, I’d have never of stepped in the cage. You don’t want to shock the system with to much reality all in one go, you need to drip feed it to them to enable them to consume the reality without it destroying the ‘ego’ which is one of their most valuable assets at this early point in their MMA career…. So then i hear you ask, if the ego is so valuable early on in said fighters career… why risk saying anything at all?? Because, if you drip feed them that ‘real shit’ in tiny bite sized chunks, when reality comes knocking, and it will, in the form of a 8oz glove to the face!! If the steps i have listed have been followed, the sufferer of CFS will have a shorter distance to fall from, hence making it easier to get back on the saddle so to speak . It’s fine being 3-0 against part time fighters, but as you keep fighting and progressing in the sport which is surely the aim, your opponents will get better and if you’re suffering from full blown CFS, the ass whipping that you receive will come as a nasty shock.
Speaking as i have to a vast array of people about this disease and the carriers of it. I’ve noticed that usually people are split into into two camps.
The first camp will take the more sympathetic view towards CFS sufferers -highlighting the points about it being a scary thing to step in the cage- and that all of the bullshit that is churned out by them is simply that, bullshit that the CFS sufferer uses to cushion his ego. Then there’s the camp that has no sympathy for them what so ever and figures that they’re beyond help and the vast majority of CFS sufferers coincidently also have a nasty case of arsehole-ightis, so they sit back and enjoy watching the CFS sufferers painful fall from grace.
Which camp do i fall in to?? Well although i see great points in both side of the arguments (and no it’s not just because i wrote them both) i don’t fall in either as i view WFS and CFS as sick people with disease like symptoms more serious than any flu. So when i witness these unfortunate mortals, i feel genuinely sorry for them… Just like i would for any sick person and i wish them well from afar, because all though WFS or CFS isn’t contagious.. it is painful for you to be around.
Thanks for reading. My next blog will be out on Friday and every following Friday there after the next topic i’m tackling is what place if any does Traditional Martial Art’s have in MMA