We have many amazing people with interesting stories that walk into all our gyms! The member spotlight turns to Drew Birch, one of our students at Absolute MMA Melbourne CBD.
Name/Nicknames: Drew Birch, also known as birchy, elbircho, drew barrymore and drewbee.
Occupation: Security Guard
Sports: Muay Thai
How did you get into the sport?
I did taekwondo as a child. Two years ago I started to get into boxing, but just felt the need to throw some kicks. I used to be really into UFC and really wanted to start doing MMA. It was from this interest I discovered muay thai and I fell in love with it.
What are your immediate training goals?
To push myself to the next level.
What are your goals for the next five years?
Next year I plan to train a lot and hopefully take some fights. In 2019, I plan to go back to Bangkok for two or three months to train and fight. By 2020, I want to be debt free and try to move to Thailand to live, train and fight.
Why do you love training at Absolute MMA?
The location for me is perfect. Absolute MMA has the best coaches and I have learnt so much here in just one year. I’ve made good friends and gotten nothing but good vibes from training here. I’m glad I can learn from the best.
What is your favourite move?
This is hard to answer! For me, I like to chop the legs, sweeps are the best.
Can you tell us about where you’re from and any interesting stories growing up? If you’re not originally from Melbourne, how’d you end up living in Melbourne, Australia?
I was born and raised in Melbourne, I grew up in Moonee Ponds. I was rejected from the army because I’m allergic to peanuts which lead me to working security at the casino, which lead me to getting back into martial arts, which in turn led me to this gym. As depressed as I was when I was rejected (it was my life dream to join the ADF), I’m the happiest now that I have ever been.
Who are the kind of people that you look up to and why?
People who follow their dreams and passions in life and won’t stop for anything. There’s only one way to rise to the top and that’s by never giving up. I really look up to my coach Toohey, he is a master. Hopefully one day I can be half the man and marital artist that he is. I also look up to Lukas “The Lycan” Catubig a lot, he is a beast and he always pushes himself hard in training.
If you could go back in time to your first martial art class, what would be the advice you give to your past self?
Slow down and don’t get too excited. Good things come to those who wait. Learn good technique first and the rest will follow.
“Although his tattoos and shaved head can make for an intimidating first impression, Drew is honestly one of the easiest blokes to get along with. He has not been training with us for long but has quickly become one of the more skilled Muay Thai members at the CBD location. Looking forward to seeing him have his first fight early next year!” – Darren Gn
“Drew is easy going, is a fun person to be around and easy to get along with. He always gives a hand in class to help people with their technique and is never late! He shows a lot of dedication and always trains at least 3 or 4 times a week. Anyone who gets to know Drew will get along fine with him, he is not stuck up. Girls he is single, six foot tall with lots of hair…haha!” – Coach Laos Toohey