“Take it easy. We’ve got plenty of time!” taunts the limber and agile henchman whilst taking a quick breather from his duel with Jackie Chan, the bottom of his right foot facing directly towards the sky as he casually stands with his legs in a perfect split. For millions of people around the world, this was their introduction to kicking machine Ron Smoorenburg. Beginning as an extra when Jackie Chan’s “Who Am I?” was filming in his native Holland, Ron’s persistence and determination to prove himself eventually won him the role of one of Jackie’s two opponents in the climactic rooftop battle, where he would ultimately steal the show with his dynamic kicking skills and almost superhuman flexibility. Now, fifteen years and dozens of appearances in action films later, the record holder for the highest kick (11 feet!) has released his own unique material with the aim of sharing the secrets of his success in both the areas of martial arts and action movies with the world.
Part one of the DVD set focuses on developing flexibility, kicking, and leg holding skills. There’s the occasional inclusion of a simple side split that will be familiar to anyone well-versed in a kick-oriented martial art, but more often than not, the viewer will find him or herself engaged in an exercise that will leave them wondering, “Why didn’t I think of that?!” Rest assured, you WILL feel the stretch and strain in your hip bones and pelvis as you progress throughout the cycle, and your first run through will probably leave you barely able to stand up. However, what truly solidifies the potency of the various exercises that compose the cycle is not only how easily one’s progress can be measured, but the fact that it’s the rare workout that remains consistently challenging and powerful regardless of the user’s skill level. Anyone who doubts that need only see what Ron has in store for you at the very end – the final exercise is a thoroughly strenuous workout all by itself!
In part two, Ron reveals another of his great secrets – breaking into the action movie industry. As you recover from your first training session in part one, it’s nothing less than fascinating to hear Ron describe the do’s and don’ts of doing martial arts on film and making a name for yourself in the industry. In the years since “Who Am I?”, he’s worked alongside such well-known figures in the martial arts movie industry as Gary Daniels, Tony Jaa, Donnie Yen, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Scott Adkins, and countless others, and the wisdom he imparts to the viewer eager to headline their own action film is indispensible – the importance of networking to the need for constant professionalism, to who in the industry can help you get your foot in the door, and just as importantly, who can’t (or won’t)! Even putting aside its immeasurable value as a road map to navigate the world of action movies, it’s absolutely captivating for martial arts fans and anyone with a general interest in filmmaking hear Ron recount his journey through the world of show business.
Ron’s two-part DVD comes highly recommended. What we find really refreshing about Ron’s approach is his mentorship, friendly coaching and sincere character and attitude. He really goes all out and speaks from the heart, avoiding all the politics along with the garbage that anyone in this industry will inevitably encounter. Do yourself a favour and bypass all those years of wasted time, energy, unnecessary struggle, issues along with the tissues –and focus on what really counts! Whether you want your kicking and flexibility to reach its real potential or you want to become the next Jackie Chan, Ron’s DVDs will provide you with a great blueprint for both. But perhaps the most powerful endorsement will come when friends begin to comment on how much flexibility you’ve gained, or how much your ability to lock out your kicks has improved, and make no mistake, they will.
“You are a special individual, and everybody is.”
“Oh, he’s just lucky and this and this’, that’s what people say who don’t have any goals.”
“Bring the leg back, and believe it or not, it feels like you’re being born again.”
This DVD can be purchased via the All Action website.