Published at Sunday, December 27th 2020. by jack154 in Bodybuilders.
Ahmad Haidar was born in Kuwait and is a three time winner of the International Bodybuilding Federation (IBF) World's Muscle Building Champ title. In addition to being a highly experienced bodybuilder, Haidar also trained with various other professionals including the likes of Mohammed Saleh Mohammadi and Abdul Majid al-Zaher. Once in the United States, Haidar began to become interested in researching what it takes to become a professional wrestler. This led him to the gymnasium at University of California - Los Angeles, where he trained with some of the country's top wrestlers - including WWE wrestlers A-Train and Billy Gunn. After a brief stint training at the University of Florida, Haidar enrolled at the International Amateur Wrestling Association (IAWA) in Las Vegas, Nevada.
When the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) became involved in the sport of bodybuilding, Ahmad moved into professional wrestling. In the mid 90s, Haidar travelled to the United Kingdom and began to train with the likes of David James, Simon Cowell, along with fellow British star David Bentley. After a few short years, Haidar decided to shift his focus towards the world of mixed martial arts. At the time, MMA was not widely recognized in the United States, so instead, he turned his attention towards pingback, which is a combination of both boxing and wrestling. Most experts agree that Haidar would have been a good fit as a lightweight or middleweight competitor in the UFC, but due to issues regarding his physical condition - specifically, he had previously torn his bicep - he eventually became interested in competing for the vacant featherweight title against Andre The Giant at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.
Unfortunately, after only a couple of matches - most notably a drab loss to Ken Shamrock in which he lost by submission - he pulled out of the Olympics, citing the fact that it was becoming increasingly difficult to sustain a career in the sport. As such, he never got to fulfill his potential in the UFC, despite winning a number of Fight Of The Night awards. Part of the reason for this was his image, which critics say looked nothing like the bulky, built fighters that he showcased in the UFC. Part of the problem, of course, was his appearance, which some say was awkward and very pale. With all the attention on his physique, Haidar apparently failed to fully utilize his other assets, such as his explosive power and high-machinery aptitude.
In recent years, Haidar has largely trained exclusively with Russian athletes. He is one of only a few athletes to have trained extensively with the Russian government's own VGR brand of karate, and also with the taekwondo and judo traditions. Haidar first competed in a Russian-only competition in 2020, but since then has largely trained exclusively in Russian-based sports. In addition to his MMA bout, he also fought against and defeated former UFC lightweight and welterweight champion Diego Sanchez. Though he lost the fight, it can be argued that the stylistic expertise and superior cardio ability demonstrated in that fight established Haidar as one of the top Russian athletes.
In addition to his taekwondo and judo background, Haidar's best assets lie in his street fighting abilities. After losing a decision to former heavyweight champ Shawn Kovacich in 2020, Haidar avenged the loss by beating Kovacich in the later contest, earning himself a title shot with the WEC in 2020. A win over Diego Sanchez would have secured Haidar a shot at the WEC title, but due to his inexperience, he lost the fight by submission in the second round.
During the time that Haidar was putting his amateur fighting career on hold, he developed a good knowledge of taekwondo and judo. He even boxed in high school, although he never considered it to be serious fighting. After becoming a Taekwondo black belt, he enrolled at the University of Southern California's Judo and Taekwondo department, which has an esteemed taekwondo training programme. While there, he also took part in a variety of martial arts classes, including an intensive programme run by martial arts legend Bruce Lee.
Although Haidar never expected to make a living from taekwondo, he began to travel the world to teach and work with students. The experience he gained from travelling around the globe was what led him to discover the discipline of taekwondo and to develop it into an enduring bodybuilding career. Haidar travelled to China, Japan, Russia, France, America, and Brazil. Despite the language and culture barriers, he was able to build a large student base in the many different countries. Today, he is highly regarded as an internationally recognised taekwondo teacher and trainer.
The Taekwondo World Health Organisation (WTO) regards Ahmad Haidar as one of its highly respected senior instructors. He holds a black belt in taekwondo and teaches a variety of physical and social activities. Most importantly, however, he offers a genuine and friendly enthusiasm for the sport. He provides students with the knowledge and confidence they need to improve themselves as martial artists. If you are considering taking up taekwondo as a martial art, then Haidar should be a big part of your taekwondo education.
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