The ranks of Team Third Law’s Competition Team grew early Saturday morning, as 10 competitor-hopefuls put themselves through the grueling mental and physical test required to join the team.
They started at 3 a.m. with a warmup including hundreds of burpees and lunges, and it got harder from there. They grappled and did circuit training, sprinted and some got sick. But everybody persevered and about four hours later, they had all passed the test.
The night started out with a tough circuit, including burpees and lunges. It’s the kind of circuit that some people might do for their entire workout… but not these students. Tonight, it was just their warmup. Alex Woods was the fastest, finishing first — and, for being first, he got to grapple with Coach Joseph Formica for his first grappling sessions.
We can’t give away all the secrets of the Competition Team Tryouts, but we can tell you that it included a lot of grappling — both gi and no gi — and a lot of difficult circuit training. Students who did the tryouts included students in both the school’s MMA and BJJ programs. Some have been training for awhile and others just a few weeks.
Master Roberto arrived at the tryouts an hour in, after flying to NYC on Friday to meet with his mentor Master Julius from Crazy 88. His flight was scheduled to arrive in Fort Myers much earlier in the evening, but it was delayed and he landed at RSW around 3:30 a.m.
He drove straight to the school and, at 4 a.m., took the reins from Coach Joseph Ruggiero. Spectators who had come to encourage / torture their teammates included Crystal Bradley, Eric Luna, Mikhail Dye, Eric Morales, Nick Giddings and Katy Torralbas.
Fueled by Redbull and still dressed in his suit from the meeting, Master Roberto was a tough task master — just ask any of the students who tried out. Many pushed themselves farther than they thought possible.
There was even some heavy-bag tossing, with BB and Gary making the craziest throws, taking out Master Roberto’s PVC pipe fence in the process — and nearly some of the spectators’ heads! Check out Master Roberto’s face in the photo below…
As always, there were some people who worked so hard they had to make a run for the restroom…
But as Master Roberto likes to say, it was just “weakness leaving the body,” and they kept pushing through the night.
Finally, as the sun rose, the students headed outside for their final test.
Be sure to give a big congratulations to the following people the next time you see them in class: Shaun Ertischek, Carollynn Spivak, Alex Devore, Alex Woods, Steve Snover, Gary Waskovich, Matt Wincel, Jon Heiland, Patrick Thir and Beaudelaire Boyer.
After doing the tryouts, they’ll be able to attend the 9 a.m. Competition Team Class on Sunday mornings, and they’re able to start competing.
If you’re a current student and you’re interested in competing, just talk to one of the coaches about doing the tryouts.
It’s not a technique test, so even if you’re new at the school you can still try out. They’re held about every 3 months, so now is a great time to ask so you can prepare yourself for the next one!