GSP Trainer Erik Owings and the Creation of RUSHFIT

By Jonathan Snowden

Mushin Martial Arts founder Erik Owings is not a man who believes in doing things halfway. When he got interested in training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu he went all in – two years in Brazil with some of the best grapplers in the world. At the famed Gracie Barra Academy, Owings got his brown belt before moving back to New York and finishing his tutelage under the incomparable Renzo Gracie and John Danaher.

It was in New York that Owings developed much of the knowledge he would later turn into the RushFit series of exercise DVDs. Working as a personal trainer to fund his own fighting career (Owings competed succesfully in the International Fight League before concentrating on training full time) he learned quickly how to work around space and other constraints.

“I would go to people’s homes to train them. I became very good at training people with just bodyweight and light dumbbells. That’s all people had room for in their spaces,” Owings said in an exclusive interview with Bloody Elbow. “So when Shari Spencer came to me and said ‘Hey, Georges brought your name up as somebody he thinks could design a program for him’ I could say ‘Actually I do have a program designed.’ They say luck is when preparation meets opportunity. I just took what I was already working on and modified it, tweaked it to put more intensity in it.”

Preparing the program wasn’t easy. It was one thing to tailor a program for a world class athlete like St. Pierre or Gracie. Designing a fitness regiment for a new mother looking to shed baby weight was something else entirely. The challenge was bringing those worlds together. Could you develop a program for everyone and anyone all at once?


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