In Episode 7 of the ongoing original series produced by Canadian MMA toy company Round 5 titled The Bruce Lee Story: As Told by You we hear from UFC Matchmaker, Joe Silva and world-famous, Muay Thai and Mixed Martial Arts coach and trainer and head trainer of the new TapouT Training Center, Shawn “The Coach” Tompkins.
“I was a fan of Bruce Lee since I was a little kid,” said Silva.
Silva goes on to say, “When I was a kid we didn’t even have a VCR yet. And for my birthday my dad rented a VCR; one of those giant, top-loading, toaster oven-looking things. And he rented the VCR and three Bruce Lee movies for my birthday.”
Faces light up when you mention Bruce Lee and people immediately become passionate when speaking about their thoughts and memories of the world’s most influential martial artist.
Tompkins, as most other martial artists, views and is inspired by Lee on several different levels.
“Bruce Lee, to me, if I look at it from a standpoint of where we’re at—mixed martial arts right now—I truly believe that he’s the founding the founding father.
“He was the original martial artist out there that brought in the ideas of cross-training. [He] got rid of those traditional values of ‘you do karate, you can only do karate’ or ‘you do kung fu, you can only do kung fu’. And he started to cross-train with things like jiu jitsu, a lot of wrestling.”
For almost 50 years Lee has inspired generations of people across the globe, both young and old.