Australian-Korean flyweight Phillip Kim is currently in Singapore about to make his One Championship debut on One Warrior Series 5 versus Taeho Park. We sat down with Phil last weekend to discuss his fight preparation.
EC: Despite us sitting for breakfast together how has the diet/cut been going?
PK: Yeah good! I have been on a diet plan since the beginning of camp and working with a nutritionist at Precision Athletica (strength and conditioning). They have come-up with a specific diet plan to incorporate One Championship’s guidelines on no water cutting. I need to have my walk around weight between 56.8 and 61.2kg
EC: How strict is the hydration testing? Say if you complete a hard workout as a part of normal training and sweat as usual; do you know if you would comply with their testing?
PK: So that’s the thing! I’ve been experimenting with my training. I normally do most of my training at night and after training I drink a lot of fluids. I wake up a little dehydrated still qnd consume more water in the morning to ensure I’m properly hydrated.
So I have to weigh in 2 days before and then 1 day before and both be hydrated. If either hydration or my weight is not on point I need to weigh in again on fight night. It’s a bit different to water cutting in that I can simply cut more water if my weight happens to not be where it should be.
EC: Its definitely a great system that One has implemented, although its an adjustment its moves away from the scenario where you are facing an opponent who has cut 5 to 10kg plus and then rehydrates.
PK: Yeah exactly they will rehydrate and refuel and will be around there much higher walk around weight. Its a lot safer and more of a level playing field. I’ve never cut too much water but I’ve faced people who have cut a lot of water and then looked massive on fight night.
EC: How did you find the One Warrior experience?
PK: I was just reminiscing because the tryouts were at KMA just down the road from here. Its been 2 months now. The trials have been unloaded for youtube. They selected a few fighters to spotlight, some of who are fighting on the same card as me.
EC: And the wider One experience as a whole?
PK: Great. We have been in constant communication with One with the examinations completed ad the tests once I get there. The weigh ins and further medicals will come once I get there. Although its an adjustment I’m happy to do it as its all for fighter welfare.
EC: How do you see yourself progressing in One? What’s the ultimate goal in One?
PK: I really want to impress in the upcoming fight and get a shot and contract with One Championship. I’m already eying out all the flyweights in One. They recently had the flyweight grand-prix in Tokyo and Demetrious Johnson got a win. A lot of good competition. Makes me very excited for when I get that contract and ill call out DJ right away hahaha
EC: With One being based in Singapore and now in Tokyo. Are you hoping for a Korean show?
PK: They are primarily in South East Asia but with this first show in Japan hopefully they will progress to Korea and China. Funny the guy I am fighting is from Korea. Showcasing the Korean fire in our fight Hopefully they move over to Korea and eventually over to Australia.
EC: With camp apart from the diet side of things, have you been doing anything different for strength and conditioning for this fight?
PK: I have been focusing on things I have wanted to improve technically, so I have been supplementing my strength and conditioning with my coach Nils at Precision Athletica with some specific exercises. I have also been focusing on my mental preparation, working on my reflexes with balls, working on my reaction time, training the brain. I use these things to warmup as well. Getting me firing well for my jiu-jitsu and striking training.
EC: Really shows the way the game has changed versus how our coaches and mentors prepared for their fights
PK: Really is the evolution of the sport. Everyone has reached the same stage, physically how much of a real difference is there now? Some have very similar skillsets but it’s the mental edge that gives them that little extra. Its about who has the better mindset to win and who is better prepared. Its all about building the right level of confidence for the night of the fight.
EC: Do you think this suits the relatively short turnaround from the series to this event?
PK: We do fight camps to feel confident and once I got selected, I wanted to fight right away. I mentally committed and started preparing from that time. And I feel I have built towards the right level of confidence for Singapore.
EC: Anyone you would like to thank?
PK: I’m very gracious for all the support I have received and reflected on it during camp, thanks to you guys at Endless Combat, Full Guard, Precision Athletica, my teammates at Team Perosh and my coach Anthony Perosh, my boxing coach Rodney at Blacktown PCYC, my girlfriend Rebecca and everyone I have around me. I feel that support and feel that gratitude every day. It helps me train and helps me want to do better.
EC: Thanks so much for your time and all the best for the fight. We are definitely looking forward to it.
The fight will be broadcast at 6pm AEST via the One Championship app available on Apple App Store and Google Play.