I’ve always been very involved in sport, as a young child I was very unfocussed and always getting into trouble at school. At the age of 7 I began karate which was my first martial arts experience. Through 6 years of karate my behavior and focus and dramatically improved It provided me with the drive and discipline that would allow me to achieve my future goals. At 14 I was offered an Olympic Weightlifting scholarship to train at the state sports center in Sydney under Australia’s head coaches. This became my focus for the next 7 years. As a weightlifter, I would often train twice a day while working and going to school/uni. As a weightlifter, I was able to travel to other countries and compete for Australia on a number of occasions. After a knee injury, I was no longer able to perform the movements on such a regular basis and was forced to retire. After moving to Queensland, I discovered my next focus, I had always been interested in BJJ but never had the time to try it out. I fell in love with the challenge immediately and have brought my same level of discipline and focus to Jiu-Jitsu. My ultimate goals for Jiu-Jitsu are to compete on the world stage and to become an instructor, I look forward to the future.
Q&A Session Between Ryan Pasfield and Elite Sports
Question: What will you suggest to the newcomers?
Answer: Embrace and enjoy the journey and focus on developing your skills, try not to focus too much on extrinsic goals such as belts.
Question: What does it mean for you to be a fighter?
Answer: To be humble and respectful as well as always working to improve myself inside and outside of the gym.
Question: What are the essential things for the training?
Answer: Most important thing is a good attitude and a willingness to learn.
Question: What separates you from every other fighter in your division?
Answer: My style of Jiu-Jitsu is very movement and submission based. I always hunt for the submission and can be dangerous from any position.
Question: What is the meaning of success in your mind?
Answer: To be content with life and to know that I am always working towards improving myself.
Question: With whom you would like to fight, and why?
Answer: There are so many amazing BJJ athletes in the world and I enjoy every new roll I have. If I had to pick one fighter it would be Marcelo Garcia as he’s my favorite BJJ athlete.
Question: Is there any difference b/w your common days’ diet and during competition training diet?
Answer: It really depends on where my weight is at and on the competition as different competitions have different weight divisions. I generally stay close to competition weight all year long to ensure I don’t have to cut to compete which may have an impact on my strength and energy. Usually I will just lower my carbohydrate intake while keeping my fats and protein intake at the same level to drop those last few kg a couple weeks before the comp.
Question: How does a beginner will prepare for the competition? Any advice for beginners?
Answer: To manage their anxiety and not to put too much pressure on themselves. Beginners should focus on getting comfortable in a competition environment.
Question: How is it helpful to have the information about your competitor?
Answer: It is a huge advantage, it would allow you to design a game plan around theirs and to pre-empt their attacks. It’s like playing chess against someone already knowing what moves they are going to make.
Question: Is the martial arts necessary for a common person? How?
Answer: I believe absolutely everyone benefits from practicing martial arts. Not only does it provide you with the skills required to effectively defend yourself, it also provides holistic benefits. Martial arts develop respect, humility, confidence and improves mental and physical health.
Question: Which moment is memorable for you in your past competitions?
Answer: In my most recent competition, I pulled off 6 submissions in my division to win the gold. I pulled off a variety of moves including the torture rack which I was happy with.
Question: How do martial arts help to build a leader?
Answer: Martial arts improve confidence, respect, humility and discipline which are all important qualities in an effective leader.
Question: What would be your dream fight?
Answer: Connor McGregor Vs Khabib Nurmagomedov, always enjoy a classic striker vs grappler match.
Question: How is the road plan necessary for any competition?
Answer: Train hard, train smart, eat well and keep a positive mindset.
Question: Do you have any advice for your competitors?
Answer: Train hard, stay humble and always work to improve yourself.
Question: How much importance has sports gear in any competition?
Answer: I feel that it is important, it won’t give you magic powers but high-quality gear that feels good and looks good puts you in a better mental state and boosts confidence.
Question: What should we learn from the legends /or from the seniors? Who is your inspiration?
Answer: To continue training and learning and to pass that knowledge down to the next generation of grapplers. My inspirations are Neil Owen, who is an amazing and inspiring coach and Tyrone Coppedge who is a great coach and competitor that I have been training under since the beginning and who inspired my style of Jiu-Jitsu.
Question: To whom you would like to compliment for your success?
Answer: I would credit my success to my coaches Tyrone and Jay Jay as well as all my other training partners that have helped me out throughout my journey.
Question: Who is your favorite legendary fighter? Why?
Answer: As mentioned before my favorite BJJ practitioner is Marcelo Garcia. He has a very dynamic and exciting style to watch and is easily one of the greatest of all time. He also comes across as very humble and down to earth.