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We sat down with Paul to dig into his past experiences in martial arts and military background.

Paul when did you start martial arts and what style was it?

I started Boxing in the UK when I was 15 years old, and enjoyed it for about 3 years before joining the Army at 18. I continued Boxing when time permitted, stepping into the ring and competing on a few occasions for my regiment against other regiments. I stopped as I wanted to concentrate on my career.

Paul you have extensive military training and have served all over world, tell us a little more about that?

Paul, left. 1st Tour of Northern Ireland

I served just shy of 10 years in the Army, 5 of which was with special forces as a commando. There I did a lot of empty hand tactics (unarmed combat).

I served all over the world while in the military, to many to list but most notably took part in active operations in northern Ireland, Kosovo, Oman and Sierra Leone.

I was trained in Arctic Warfare, Jungle

warfare and Anti Piracy.

When I left the Army I joined the police in the UK, I was firearm trained and spent the majority of my career in a Taser unit, we were used to dealing with offenders armed with weapons or generally known to be too violent for general duty police to deal with.


"Those who have never been to the edge and looked over will never understand that it is better to live one day as a Lion than a lifetime as a sheep. The ones that have been to the edge know that hard times don't last forever, but hard men do".

- British Royal Marines


Paul second from Left, Spartan Gym Sunderland, UK

Where did you first train MMA?

I joined Spartan gym in Sunderland where ex UFC fighter Colin Fletcher trained and know him well as a friend. Whilst at the gym I also trained sharpened up my boxing and trained in MMA, Muay Thai and combat sambo. (sambo is a Russian style of mixed martial arts which originated in training the Soviet Red Army in the early 1920's)


How has your experience been so far

at Strike MMA?

I've trained at Strike now for about 3 years (injury permitting ha ha). I love being part of the gym and socialising as well as training with like minded people. It has been great to meet people outside work and become a member of the community after moving over from the UK.

The best mates are those who you sweat and bleed with, ha ha.

Training in martial arts has given me confidence, discipline and self motivation all of which can be applied to many aspects of life. I love learning and cannot imagine a time where I would not be involved in some aspects of martial arts.


Military Medals Awarded to Paul Longden

Paul, what are your goals within martial arts?

My goals are quite simple, keep fit, keep healthy and keep learning. I hope to have a positive impact on those around me, especially the young students I help to teach, be a good example and role model to my son Ethan who is also a member at Strike MMA.

"Champions aren't made after the event, they're

made in the hours, days, months and

years spent preparing for it"

-Paul Longden

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