RENAISSANCE men are hard to come by in our modern age, however, in the hallowed gym of EireMuaySiam Kickboxing Club on Pery Street, hammering into a punching bag is Limerick’s very own Renaissance man, James Morrissey.
The Dooradoyle man will square off against Dylan Vaughan of Kerry in his hometown at the Strand Hotel for Unforgiven IV ‘Warriors Redemption’ on January 25th.
After his clash with Vaughan, James’ sights are set on the ISKA European title. The Limerick native earned the opportunity after winning two fierce bouts in one night at the Siam Warriors IV tournament in the Neptune Stadium at Cork.
A rigorous schedule undoubtedly took a physical toll on the Limerickman, and James has credited a change to his training methods crucial to his recent success.
“I think I took my foot off the pedal for this camp because I think overtraining might have been something that went against me in previous fights.
“I’ve taken it back a notch, but I’ve tried to go back to just enjoying it as it became too much of a routine in the past. Whereas now I’m taking each day to enjoy the journey and get back to my roots that really got me into this,’’ James explained.
Recovery is one of the most important aspects of training for a fighter, both in and out of fight camp.
Aside from the usual techniques such as ice baths and saunas, James says that he turns to more unconventional techniques such as the use of Cannabidiol (CBD) to aid the recovery process.
“I couldn’t swear by it enough, and there’s a reason it’s being kept at bay to a certain extent because it really does jeopardise big pharmaceutical profits.
The benefits of this stuff are truly ground-breaking, and it’s an industry that they’re struggling to keep at bay, but sooner or later the benefits are going to be out there,’’ according to James.
James doesn’t let his ferocious fists and feet do all the talking, the history and politics graduate has also delivered his messages through podcasting and running for local office.
The Muay Thai star ran for Limerick City West in 2019, and despite coming up short in the polls, James is motivated to run again to tackle local injustices and crises with the experienced he garnered from his inaugural campaign.
“The politics thing, that’s finished now, I made a last-minute jump, but it was something I was always going to do.
“As the time was moving closer to the deadline, I had taken a lot of steps that were necessary to run, but I began to realise the number of things needed to run, such as the capital to go behind it.
I was kind of on the fence, but when the deadline came, I said I had to go for it,” James reflected.
While James will have to wait until the next local elections to campaign for a seat, his podcast “Underground Psychosis” that has over 200 followers on SoundCloud has been an essential platform for Jamie to raise issues and concerns in Limerick.
The podcast reasonably took the back seat in the build-up to his fights but is now back with a second series, and the Dooradoyle native is driven to reach out and help people through his podcast.
“One of the main reasons of getting the podcast going again were the social issues that I saw in the city. I’m not saying I’m having a huge effect or rectifying them, but there were people getting onto me saying that it’s helped them.
“I say in the intro to every episode of the podcast; if it helps one person that’s good enough for me.”
What drives a man to raise social and political issues on an independently-run podcast with welts and bruises across his body? James implores that balance and passion are key.
“I’m not making a factory wage or making solid money, but I’m living everything I’m passionate about. It’s not hard to fit them all into my day because I don’t mind doing them; they’re not work for me.’’
Limerick Voice 2019 newspaper is available today in all copies of the Limerick Leader.