We interviewed José Manuel Egea Cáceres.José Manuel Egea Cáceres is 8 times Karate World Champion in his kumité modality, 12-time European Champion, 14-time Champion of Spain. It has the best Palmarés in the sports history of karate, Gold Medal of the Royal Order of Sports Merit and 7 National Sports Awards. José Manuel Egea is Karate. Kimonosport: Jose, how do you start in karate? Egea: I start at the age of 9 or 10 years old. In a gym nasman in the Carabanchel neighborhood called Bushido. My teacher was Jose Manuel Pérez Alcaide, National National National Coach of Kumité in the years 88 and 92. I also trained a lot of time with Master Ishimi. I’ve had other teachers over time. I had a time when Antonio Oliva called me, although I was not in the national team with him, he only tried me, because I was very young. I was also with Jesus Bald. The next coach was Juan Pedro Calvina, former Captain of the Spanish national team. Juan Manuel Pérez Alcaide and Jose María Martín were coach and Mabuni alias S.
Kimonosport: Who has supported you over time? Egea: My family mainly. My brother Paco since we shared a lot of time in the Spanish national team. My gym buddies like Manolo Galán, Paco Manzano, Jerónimo Cejas, etc. all of them great champions together with my brother Paco. They were definitely the ones who made me level up. We were half a national team in the same gym. We made a great group. My coaches have trusted me, too. Maybe I was born for this too. I’ve been very good at it, always since I was a little girl, although I’ve also trained a lot and tried to learn from all over the world.
“I think we can beat them”Kimonosport: After winning your first World Cup did your life change in any way? Egea: Yes. That’s when I thought I could get on with the competition world. My first World Cup was when I was a Junior. As a junior I was Champion of the Absolute World. When I arrived at the Hotel room, having won the champions of JKA, the Open, etc… I looked in the mirror and wondered, how have I won these people? I saw at the 80s World Cup in Spain, that I was a kid, along with my brother Paco and Galán, etc… when Billy Blanch won the American… who fought better than these. “I think we can beat them.” They’d say, “but if these are 30-year-old men, ” and I convinced we fought better. Before long he was European Junior Champion, Senior European Champion and Absolute World Champion. We saw that we had a lot of possibilities. Our references were the first, those who were World Champions in the year 80, Manzano, Damián González, Martín Tamillo, CalVila, the Torres brothers, Felipe Hita. They were our references. Then at the time I competed with them. I was part of the National team with them and had the opportunity to learn a lot. It was a very tough workout, unlike now. He’s more athletic now. The training of the last was more of a mixture of Karatedo, martial and sport. Undoubtedly because of the circumstances of the moment and the regulations. I also spent some time training with Dominique Valera, great teacher and friend. When I was competing there was a record of licenses. There was a martial arts boom in Spain. Let us hope that now with the Olympics karate will continue to rise, at least with the Katas part that we are very strong. I think we deserve it.
Kimonosport: Have you felt supported and valued in Spain? Egea: Well, there are moments that you do and moments you don’t. When you compete you look first at yourself, and when you’re fine, that’s when you can help others. This has often happened on the national team. Raising your country’s flag by teams is the ultimate. But first you have to be prepared individually. When you’re individually prepared, if 5, 5 powerful individualities are made a better team on the team. Working that is very important. Often federative representatives, national or international leaders, who ask, do you hear how many worlds you have? … 3, 8 or 4??. May an official representative of your country who does not know how many worlds have the greatest benchmark for your country as I have been, because it cannot be. Nadal, being a world tennis benchmark, cannot be that his federation does not know how many times he has won the Roland Garrós. Don’t let your federation know how many times you’ve won a European or a World Cup because it doesn’t create trauma but almost. In any World Cup that has been held in Spain I have been invited as a reference, nor a special mention. Maybe in another country it would be something else, I would surely be called as a counselor or as a counsel of wise men. You could be valued as a competitor, as a coach, etc… There have been very great competitors in Spain that have not been taken into account. Maybe the neglect has made you disregard these big ones. The great references of other countries have their recognition in championships, VIPS tickets to events. We have to take care of the big competitors, the quarry and the fundamental people for the federation to go up. I’ve been to worlds who had to pay for the ticket. So, I don’t care, but in other Federations I’ve been recognized and given a VIP pass, not here. Maybe something’s missing. We’re getting a lot better and I’m not much to flatter, I’m already encouraged by myself, but a little recognition doesn’t go wrong.
Kimonosport: What do you think of the current training with respect to the old one? Egea: Psychological Work (TP) has to always be. Formerly the TP was a little different. We did a stronger job of contact. The TP was trying to prepare you for the thought of “I have to hit someone strong because it hurts me.” The work was very important. There is a widespread error and it is that TP is made only when you are going to compete internationally. Work has to be done all the time. It has to be always present at your daily training. TP is to train techniques until it is exausto. You have to make physical contact efforts to know what hardness is and to know how to withstand the pace of training. Oriented for when you lose, or for when you win and you don’t get the slump afterwards. Don’t think that by winning a championship you’re the King. In everyday life you have to do this job. When you compete, the most important thing is to know that you have to compete against yourself. When you’re exausto in training it’s when you have to squeeze and move forward a little bit more. When you see a thing hurting, you have to hold on and take training a little further. because in competition it’s going to be like this. There are fights I won before I started, because psychologically I was stronger. The way you look at me, the way you act, everything… When you trained or competed in the old days, you saw who was most psychologically prepared. Maybe a competitor didn’t have many faculties, but psychologically you could see that he was very strong. Psychologically destroying his adeversarios. There comes a point where everyone lifts their leg just as high or just as fast and the difference is marked by Psychology.