While the line between what’s real and what’s fake in wrestling is a murky one at best, what’s not debatable is the athleticism involved. We’ve been in close contact with Adam Hassan (The Machine Titan) for a while now and at the very least in Wales, he’s the best in the business. So we caught up with him recently to find out a bit more about his world.
You’ve been champion since May, after an impressive 3 count on Mean Tommy Dean. Was that your signature move?
It’s one of my signature moves. My main two finishing moves are a spear and a Samoan drop. I believe I caught him off the second rope, threw him to my shoulders and that went into the Samoan drop, which is my standard finisher.
What does it mean to you being the Welsh Wrestling Heavyweight Champion?
It was always my goal to be the champion. Any company I got into, I always wanted to be the best in that company. Welsh Wrestling is the biggest (wrestling) company in Wales, so it was definitely a goal to get to that point where I am the champion. Also I had my daughter there present at the show, and I got her up into the ring with me, which was really, really good.
I started out there around about 3 years ago and I was at the bottom of the pyramid, and you’ve got to work your way up. What it meant was I was at the top. I was at the top of that pyramid for the first time. I’m very happy to have achieved that.
Your next fight, is it a cross-promotion between Welsh Wrestling and Pro Evo W?
No. In the UK there are many different wrestling federations. In Wales the main one is Welsh Wrestling. There are a few smaller organizations. I’ve worked for all of them. Dragon Pro Wrestling, Celtic Wrestling… When you go into England then obviously they have their own companies such as Pro Evo W, Pride Wrestling… The list goes on and on. I’ve probably wrestled for around 15 companies through Wales, England and even Scotland. I did two big shows in Scotland for Scottish Wrestling Entertainment. It has taken me all around the UK.
So you still wrestle in other federations?
Yes. Though I’m Welsh Champion, you don’t defend that title outside of Wales unless obviously it has the blessing of the promoter. It doesn’t happen often. I’m current Welsh Wrestling Heavyweight Champion, I have held other titles such as the Celtic Wrestling Heavyweight Championship, TNWA Heavyweight and I held the Interactive Championship as well. But the main one out of all of those was the Welsh Wrestling. It’s the pinnacle of them all.
Who has been your toughest opponent to date?
Probably my first match will always be the toughest because you’re new out there and overwhelmed by what’s going on. But getting into Welsh Wrestling my toughest opponent would be Kaid Callous. He’s the ring general, the locker room general within Welsh Wrestling. He pushed me. He really pushed me. And every time I got into the ring with him, he pushed me and got more from me every single time. Since then I’ve been against bigger guys, stronger guys, but Kaid was always that one that would develop and get the best from me.
You’ve recently been involved in a feature film called Instant Death starring Lou Ferrigno (The Incredible Hulk, Pumping Iron) where you play the arresting police officer. What was it like working alongside him?
When I got told there was a possibility I would be in a film with Lou Ferrigno I jumped out of my seat, I was really excited. For me it wasn’t The Incredible Hulk aspect, it was Pumping Iron. It was amazing I got the chance to work with someone, who worked with Arnold Schwarzenegger. It was a thrill. Within the group there was between 7 and 8 of us, that were the armed officers. A few of them didn’t know who he was – That amazed me.
You get nervous meeting someone at that level but at the same time you got to be professional and do your job. You can’t help being star struck but you got to get on with what you got to do. It was a long day, but a hell of a day!
Do you know when it will be released?
As far as I know it’s the beginning of 2016. Things in post-production can always delay, but last I heard it was around March – April.
Speaking of Lou Ferrigno in Pumping Iron, Bodybuilding is obviously very important to you. Can you share a little of your routine with us?
Bodybuilding is a huge influence in my life. It’s got me to where I am right now. I grew up watching Arnold Schwarzenegger. That’s my generation with action movies starring Arnold, Sylvester Stallone, Dolph Lundrogen and wrestlers such as Hulk Hogan and Ultimate Warrior. Those are the guys that pulled me into it. I started bodybuilding around 15 or 16 but basically I didn’t know what I was doing. I was one of those guys who had those plastic Argos weights in the house, duplicating exercises I read in a magazine. Training way too much. I really didn’t have much of a clue until I started training in a basement gym in Merthyr town. One of the guys took a look at my routine and said right; you’re doing way too much. This is what you need to do.
I always thought the more you do the better. And duplicating Arnolds routine would get you there, but Arnold is another level. I learnt from there to stem back my routine. It’s taken me years and years to perfect that. And you’re always learning everyday. Always will be. Changing things up, doing different things.
What I tend to do is train say, shoulders on a Monday 4-5 exercises. Unlike most I don’t count my sets. I start repping to warm up and then when I’m ready I think right, now to start doing the hard work. Sometimes it can be 2 or 3 sets, sometimes it’s 5 or 6. I change the exercises around every other week. But for example I’ll do (train) back on the Tuesday. Chest on Wednesday. Thursday will be arms and Friday, legs. I need to change this around for my other activities like wrestling and MMA/BJJ, but it’s basically a standard 5 day split.
You mentioned some action heroes and wrestlers, do you have someone you look up to now for inspiration?
The ones I mentioned are the main ones I grew up with. Now I look at people like Triple H. Brock Lesnar is quite a big influence on me, WWE champion, former UFC champion. Doesn’t do much outside of those areas, like movies. Acting wise, Arnold Schwarzenegger has done so, so much. People who don’t know him, ought to go out and read his book. The guy has done bodybuilding, paved the way for bodybuilders. Then he went into movies even though he was told he’d never make it. And turned out to be the highest paid actor of all time. Then he goes into politics. People don’t realize all that he’s done. He’s definitely been the biggest inspiration in my life. I’m a big believer in listening to inspirational speeches. I’m always on YouTube listening to Arnold’s quotes and speeches. There’s other guys too, like C T Fletcher, Steve Jobs. People should listen to them to try and motivate themselves. I usually put them on in the background while I’m prepping my food.
You touched on that you’re training in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and other Mixed Martial Arts. Do you feel this gives you an athletic edge when wrestling your opponents?
Oh definitely. MMA and BBJ give me a legitimate background in combat most wrestlers out there don’t have that. Very few of them do any sport apart from wrestling so when they get in there with me the’ve got to face something they never have before. And it conditions you too. It conditions your body. There’s a difference between it. When wrestling there’s an element of performance to entertain the crowd. MMA and BJJ are an art form, but in essence you’re basically looking to beat the shit out of your opponent. That’s what it comes down to. But I enjoy it. There’s nothing better than sparring with your mates. You put your head guard on, your gloves on and your gum shield in and get into that cage and that’s when business happens. You’ll fight and hit each other. Come out and that’s it, you go back to being mates. It’s kind of a switch you pull. It’s the same with BJJ and grappling. The amount of times I’ve dragged myself to training because I’m tired, I’m beat-up. But I go because I enjoy it. It was only last week – I could hardly stand from pulling my hamstring. I decided to strap my leg up in several layers and tape over that and get myself down there. I wasn’t at 100% but I got myself in there.
You’ve recently added stunt work to your list of professions, can you tell us more about that and what you’ve been doing?
Yeah, it’s amazing how some things lead into others. The reason I got into films was pretty random. My wrestling promoter had a call from a guy involved with movies and he was looking for someone big that could do a fight sequence for him. I turned up to meet him and the fight coordinator. We went through the fight sequence, only once, and I remembered the fight sequence better than the coordinator. So the Director was immediately impressed with that. I went on to film the fight, he was pleased with how it turned out and I subsequently went on to work on another 5-6 films with the guy. My parts started to become bigger and bigger as we went along.
That led me to meet Rick, who’s in charge of the Flash and Blades Stunt & Combat Team. He’s constantly asking me to come down and do some training with them, but with a busy work schedule it’s been quite hard. So he had asked me to come down on a training session, while he was shooting a demo he wanted me to be a part of. He was happy with my previous experience with wrestling and MMA, which was easily applicable to the fight sequences. Then he wanted me to go into the weapons training part of it. I got my hands on some guns and he taught me how to fire them and I’m actually doing my course on that next year, so I’ll be qualified to carry out the weapons aspect. Since then I’ve done jerk wire work, I’m learning swords. Ricks a great guy and he seems keen on me and is always trying to bring me into the fold. I’m always getting random phone calls to get involved. Two weeks ago, I did some work on Vikings Legacy and helping with jerk wire on that.
It’s great how one event has led to these new experiences.
Yea exactly, I’m a big believer in not saying no to anything and that’s taken me to so many different places. Last year I was on BBC Radio and I was in the newspaper a few times. I’ve been in around 6-7 feature films. I tend not to think about things too much and just figure it out when I get there.
What does an MMA, Bodybuilding, Wrestling champion like to eat?
Haha, everything! I’m eating every two hours. Obviously I try to eat as healthily as possible. I look at food a little bit differently than most people. It’s not seen as enjoyment, it’s just fuel. So when a meal is in front of me it’s quite simply, protein, carbohydrates, fats. But my diet consists mostly of high protein – steak, chicken, eggs, veg. Carbs – sweet potatoes, brown rice. I don’t eat a lot of pasta. And then there’s obviously my protein shakes. I average between 8 and 9 meals a day depending on what is on that day. But those meals include shakes. I count those as meals. Physically it’s quite difficult to eat 8 meals so it’s 4 or 5 proper meals and the rest is protein as meal replacement.
Your next opponent, who is he? What message do you have for him?
It’s a Pro Evo W match, I got a rookie I believe. Mike something, he’s a rookie and he’s about half my bodyweight, so it’s not going to take too long. It’s not gonna be pretty. It wasn’t what I was expecting; it came out of nowhere. Saturday I got him, then Monday ‘til the Friday I have a full round of Welsh Wrestling so two of those days I have 2 shows, so 4 matches over 2 days. But the guy I got on Saturday, it’s not going to be pretty for him, but I got an easy day for me.
When and where can we see you next?
Next in Wales, I will be at Porthcawl Pavilion on Monday at 7pm, Tuesday I believe I’m in Brean Sands and Tuesday night I’m in Brecon. Wednesday Cwmbran and Thursday I’m in North Wales. When you get so many dates given to you, you’re never really sure exactly where you are. Sometimes I get calls to make an event the same day.