First, I need to be a hundred percent clear that the Aliveness concept, as presented below, I got from Matt Thornton and the SBG Tribe back in the late nineties. Matt put into words what a lot of people half knew but never really talked about. He laid out the framework, and a lot of us road-tested it and found it to be true.

For more information, please watch the video above, and go here: Philosophy – SBG (

This will give you an excellent overview of what aliveness is in this context. The three I’s method also revolutionised the MMA class that I used to coach, and I use it even when teaching or researching what can be termed traditional martial arts such as stick fighting, Savate and Sera.

All of us coaches teach from our curriculums and are constantly refining how we teach. Let’s take martial arts personalities and legends out of the review method. The aliveness concept is the high-end coaching method for getting highly functional martial arts skills across to the student.  

There are many misconceptions about it being about just going ultra-hard, but it is, in fact, more than that, and the details are laid out on the above page and video. When I first saw Matt’s views on this subject, I purchased his first series of SBG videos and also several other instructional sets over the years. I managed to take in a workshop with him at the gym of the late Karl Tanswell here in the UK.

I recommend checking out Matt by training with him and looking at his online SBG University training offerings. Aliveness is the foundation you can build on for how you approach training and coaching any art.

Published by killick Off Road Arts

Martial Artist, Adventurer and Privateer. Writer and Peace Activist. Duen de casa.

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