Jorge is the founder of PurMotion. His experience as a 5-time Olympic athlete fueled his passion to change the way the world thinks about fitness and has led to the creation of a new training modality complete with new movements, products and programming. In today’s podcast, we discuss Jorge’s athletic past and how he transitioned into fitness, manufacturing and education.
- Jorge’s start in judo
- Competing in 5 Olympic games
- Jorge’s transition into fitness
- How and why he started PurMotion
- Ingenuity and filling training gaps
- Athletic demands for combat sports
- Building the 360 degree athlete
- and more…
Follow them on Instagram –> @purmotion_official
Full Transcription of Our Podcast with Jorge Bonnet from Purmotion:
Corey Beasley [00:00:01]: Hey guys, Corey Beasley with fight cam conditioning and I’m here with Jorge Bonnet. Jorge, how you doing?
Jorge Bonnet [00:00:07]:Doing good, Corey. It’s a pleasure for me to have you in Birmingham, Alabama, all the way from the Southern California.
Corey Beasley [00:00:14]: Exactly. So guys we’re out here at Jorge’s facility out here in Birmingham and just wanted to share some of the things that he’s doing some of the insights to he had experiences over the years. And you’ve been doing this for quite afew years now, right?
Jorge Bonnet [00:00:31]:Yeah. Actually pure motion was founded in 2009, but the accumulation of athletic Olympic experience as judoka as a bobsledder. And also spending time in the weight room getting ready, preparing myself for competition, either national, international that little by little led me to what I call is my vocation, which is a strength and conditioning coach. And the other thing that promotion as I said, the founder of the company is that I questioned, challenged the system in a good way, in a respectful way in order to find the best practice or practices when it comes to developing athletic performance, not only during the competition years, but also to ensure that not only myself but athletes and non-athletes can have an extended career in the life once their sports once they retire to extend their longevity and their vitality and whatnot. So there’s a lot of things that we consider to be accepted conventional way of doing thing when it comes to fitness. And we have little by little, not because we want it to, but we little by little we have challenge it and demonstrated that they’re not right. I mean like just because you’re getting older, for instance, does not mean that you have to go to a little walk or do a step aerobics or do a lot of stretching is flawed. The system is flawed.
Corey Beasley [00:02:31]: Well, cool. Well, I want to get into more, a little bit more about your company and the things that you guys have come across. But also you mentioned it a minute ago that you were an Olympian and I know earlier today you were talking about how you kind of got put down that road. So I mean you grew up in Puerto Rico?
Jorge Bonnet [00:02:50]:Yeah, I was born in New York, in Staten Island. My father was doing the residency, was a medical doctor. And then when I was three, we all moved back to the Island. And you know, I five, six years old and I want just a normal kid going outside play, whatnot. But and unfortunately or fortunately now I was faced with the situation of being bullied not only me and my brothers, five brothers and we were little. So we’re picked on and my father frustrated from the situation we ended up, I didn’t judo though, in a near the area. And that’s how things started. I mean, we went from being able to defend our self-take care of not being beat up to start going to tournaments and winning more than losing. And I remembered that me and my brothers, we could care less about medals and trophy I was motivation was when our father used to tell us like, Hey, if everybody wins. We going to have pizza. So we all told each other, you better win. So that was really the motivation. And as we got older my brothers, little by little, they start quitting. And for some reason I was following the same route by 11, 12. I said, I don’t want to do it anymore. For some reason my father and my sensei said, no. I said, what the F, Lewis can quit. Mandy can quit, Fernando can quit. Why I can’t quit? And said, what can I quit when you earn your black belt? So I’m counting with my fingers I was 16 years old. I’m allowed to, I said, well, just about five years. It doesn’t matter how good you are in judo, if you are that young, you will not get your black belt. They’ll write to you about 16 years old. So I got my black belt at that point, I know the decision to make, to quit legally go to book or start in new journey in that environment. And I looked at my father and the look without our word says it all. Until this day I did it for you. From this day forward, it’s on me. In less than six months I was invited call in to be part of the Puerto Rico national judo team and in about a year and a half, I wasn’t number one seated in my weight class, qualify for the Pan-American Judo Championships, I lost my first place by split decision I to silver, but that was my ticket to my first Olympic games in 1984. So the message is opportunities comes to you every day is up to us, to you, to me to take it or not. But I have a hard time when athletes come to me complaining that I never got a chance, never had that opportunity, I like to say, bullshit. You were just asleep. You were not paying attention. Maybe you didn’t show up to practice enough, you not pay attention. So that’s how everything has started from being bullied too to athletics to the high level.
Corey Beasley [00:06:44]: And how long did that last?
Jorge Bonnet [00:06:46]:Well, I lasted about close to 20 years in the sport, 10 year on the national Olympic level. I was fortunate to compete in 1984 all the way to the quarterfinals. And then I repeated again in 1988 and I say, you know what, I didn’t do as well as I expected even though I felt better, more mature but thing didn’t go as well. So at this point I decided to retire I have nothing to prove so I hang the [Inaudible 00:07:25]put it in the closet, I was so burned out Corey, I want nothing to do with the sport. And two years later at the gym formal friend of my tracking field’s athletes from Florida he went Puerto Rico training. And he talk to me and said I want to put together the first bobsled team and I don’t know what the F you talking about. So he explained to me Torpedo, Ice, track and he said yes. 30 days later I was on the French alps la Blanche France facing that mile long track and you know what, I was nervous as Judoka when I compete but I literally shit my pants when I saw that truck the turns was about 12,13 feet high. Long story short I was the guy in charge of putting the track together, the runners, the strings for the suspension system. And I ask the team captain how do you do it? Where’s the menial? He said, look at the Germans and the Italians and the Russians just copy and paste, monkey see monkey do. So that’s really how we started in the first four times that I went down the track. That track would you that was in 1992 winter league, the games, the truck that we use in France, la Blanche France the winter Olympic Games. I crashed four times in a row and you wonder like, how in the world I’m going to keep doing this. But again, we got an all straight it out and we got better. And the residency story, we quantify and we competed in the 1992 and 1994 and 1998 the winter Olympic Games two man, four man. The point is that on the training side I went from a training for like grappling, like Judo, very metabolic, very lactate intense, multigenerational movement, to more speed and power, short explosive spring bull getting and tried to go at find as you can, so experiences that I was exposed, were fascinating I feel blessed about that. But one thing that I noticed is like, how come is it that we are spending our time in the gym lifting vertically, axially, vertically, moving that bar up and down, up and down, up and down when, when I go outside the gene and perform all of these sports with letting movement is nothing but vertical. That doesn’t make sense. So I started talking to strength coaches and this coach and most of them, they were so into the conventional barbell lifting, which is power lifting base Olympic lifting base. And there was adamant they will not wanting to hear anything different. So that’s sparked my interest to start digging deeper, try to understand the history of the fitness industry, the strength and conditioning. And I realized that, you know what, there’s a lot of gaps. There is so much gaps, you know, just because in the books doesn’t mean its right. And researchers believe and they were convinced the world was Flat Square. Christopher Columbus. When he came back from his voyage for the Americas, he told the queen and the King of Spain, we messed up. The world was always been rounded just because in the books again, doesn’t means its right. And we have the capacity as a strength and conditioning coaches to think, ask questions. And when I was younger usually that I got was, this is the way it’s always been done. This is the way the old man did it. And this is how we’d been waiting so many championships. And I said, compared to what? Because everybody else is doing the same thing. So long story short I started realizing that the way the fitness industry as we know it today, it only goes back about 50, 60 years ago. And like we spoke two days ago it’s a system that is built from the outside in, it’s a system outside in or I like to call it, it’s a copy paste system. Where 50 years ago as trends go with for football and whatnot, they realized that they needed strength for the football players to get stronger. At least that was what’s happening here in this country. So what they did, they kind of defense and they look who is strong power lifters, copy paste. That’s why you see a back squat, deadlift, bench press as part of faced with the traditional transactional training program. And then they said, okay, now we need some power and explosive first step, explosive movement who is explosive. Let’s go back to this same strategy. Look over the fence. Olympic lifters, copy paste. That’s why we have power cleans or cleaning and snatchers. And there are variations but they all done with the [Inaudible 00:13:27]. And then they went like, okay now we need sides. We need mass. Who is big. Oh the bodybuilding guys copy paste. So my pointing and I can keep going on. Because I mean then they got big, they got explosive but stiff. So let’s bring, who is out there that is nimble and flexible. The [Inaudible 00:13:51]people. So we have built its strength and conditioning program of only related training modalities in some of it are sports-related and tried to compress it in the book and call it strength and conditioning and fitness. I remind you this and I tell my coaches, when you copy paste, when you adopt, not adapt, but I dark concepts in this case, movements taken from sport. You’re going to bring the good in the bad. You’re going to get strong. Yes, you’re going to get explosive. Yes, you’re going to be big. Yes. But that comes at a price, I call it side effects in sports. Athletes eventually retire and injuries are expected it’s a norm, but 90 fitness. See, what we have done is we have incorporated adopted movements that were designed, number one, to win, not to prefer you to win. The motivation was to win by lifting as much weight and that’s how you claim your trophy. And second, make sure the technique is good enough again, to lift as much way and hopefully make sure that the body doesn’t break down. But unfortunately there’s some stress that I call it the, unwanted join stress going on that at the first it hard to see. At first you don’t see that there’s some unwanted join stress in their shoulder or the lower back and, or the knee. And the thing is that as a strength coaches, what we want to do is to strengthen the triple extension I call it, you need to strengthen both the triple flection and extension. And that’s why we incorporated those movement. And the test took to validate it that works or not is the vertical jump. So my debate is not and I’m not debating that fourth production forced production power output, if you need that. But my angle is, well, is vertical job is your test? Why not come up with a movement pattern that you can add external loads but still comply with the force line that you would see on a vertical jump where the moment arms at the ankle, knees and hips are similar to the body wave vertical jump. So that’s why I prefer to use more than trap bar because the trap bar followed that natural force line going through the in front of the ankle, behind the knee from the hip. So, I mean from that point it’s very hard to hurt your body. But see with the trap bar what you’re doing and you modifying to be able to lift heavy without sacrificing the joints and that’s just the beginning. So PurMotion have taken that concept of loading but also respecting joint alignment to maintain or improve flow, natural flow, which is how the body move. So that that lead this conversation to what are the movement that matters? What is the purpose of the human body and how is suppose how evolve this way to do physical work? And it doesn’t take long when you start reading and observing that the purpose of the human body is really to do purpose based physical work. There’s no debate on that. And our role as strength coaches is to increase the capacity of purpose based physical work.
Corey Beasley [00:18:45]: For whoever’s standing in front of you. And that can be a variety of different things?
Jorge Bonnet [00:18:48]:And again, you know, but the thing is purpose based. What is that? And I couldn’t at first define it but I did once I went back in history, not 60 year, but at a thousand, 2000, 3000 years ago where the machine, the engine of building structures, stadium palaces, castle walls, bridges was the human body that was engine. And there was identify for time of physical work that these ancient empires that like the first Chinese empires, Mongolian, Greeks, Romans, Aztecs, Mayans, although they existed at different points in time, they shared the same type of physical work and therefore lifting, fighting, spraying, dancing. There were lifting for the purpose of building structure. And the way they lived was mostly unilateral. It was not even using a viable and keep it Old Square vertical. There was, the movement were very complex but basic, movement like pushing, pulling rotational movement, like a little squatting, but the footprint was different, more split. But yet the purpose was to build structured to, to build and protect and expand empire. Fighting, regardless of you know how they did it or not, they were successful at it. Because they did it for centuries for hundreds and hundreds of years. So movements in the tools and how they fought to defend the empire needed to be amazing. Spring which use a way of locomotive either to get there and kill or get the hell out and survive and dancing once you were successful at any or all of those three types of physical work, you celebrate victory and or you find your mate again to expand the empire. So for us dancing, you can make it will be sack, speed, quickness because dancing is nothing else that quickness. So when I identified those four types of physical work, I realized that Holy shit, it’s all ground based on your feet. I’m not hanging in the monkey bar, I’m not just dancing, but I’m not just doing like Burpees for instance. Yeah, you can get tired of doing that. But what is the purpose? What was the purpose 3000 years ago to do Jumping jacks and Burpees? Nothing. I mean probably, they didn’t even know. So that gave me the foundation to select design the movements that really matters. Movement is rooted in those four types of physical work. So every movement that we do, again it’s rooted in lifting, fighting spring thing, dancing.
Corey Beasley [00:22:32]: Now, what are some of I hear a lot of people talking about squatting unhinging and pushing and pulling and climbing and all these different movement patterns? I mean, do you guys have some pillars of your system as I imagine it goes a little more deep than those four categories?
Jorge Bonnet [00:22:52]:Yes. Everything that every that we have evaluated, tried, we have summarized it and put it in a very simple method called the pure motion method. Like I think by now you can agree that you know how much I like mathematics because it really put things into a black and white environment. And I love equations. I love geometry. It’s very hard to argue when you use mathematics. And the reason why I went into mathematics because I didn’t have the money and I even if I do, I will not throw it into research. It too expensive, its use took in ticket. And you know what a mathematic has proven so far for us that our audience, they get it, to do with science, math and science. So what I did is I was, for example, I was very confused or I was overwhelmed of carrying all these strengthen condition books and I have to train people. So I wanted to find a simple, a visual model that like, it will help me with programming workouts in coaching. So the PurMotion method is nothing new. If you look at the six principles that we look at, the new is the, is the summation of those principles in a mathematical equation where the first one is all about, we believe all about integrated movements. You only isolate either you want to show muscle like a bodybuilder or something is broken in the chain. You’ve got an injury, you got to isolate until you recover and then bring the chain work together, work to bring everything back together. But even though we work as the body has one unit, there’s some basic movement that’s the pillars. That’s the principle. Number two, nothing new. It doesn’t matter if you are an athlete or not. Your body is more designed to push and pull responsible provided by your upper extremity, rotate, lower extremity, which is locomotive stuff like running, spitting and whatnot and squatting, hip hinge and all that builds and variation. We call it a level change. And then we also have any combination they’re off, it’s a complex movement and most movement in light lifting, fighting’s painting, dancing, it’s a combination of those basic foundational movements. So we also incorporate into the principles are placed of motion and we all know this side to front to transverse and combination of that get moved to [Inaudible 00:25:53]I share with you too that for us place of motion is pretty much obsolete because principle four tells a better story. Forced line or force vectors. And I can’t not imagine his stress and conditioning coach putting together workouts or designing program without incorporating force vectors.
Corey Beasley [00:26:19]: Can you explain that a bit more detailed?
Jorge Bonnet [00:26:24]:Yeah. I mean force vectors is nothing else that the combination of two variables magnitude and direction. The Western world known. Exactly. And they’re pretty every day obsessed about the concept of magnitude, which is basically load. How much can you bench? How much can you squat? How much can you deadlift? That is magnitude? But then the black sheep is direction in the conventional strength and conditioning environment, the direction it’s vertical, axial gravity base only. It’s overrated. Like I said, if you do too much of something or too little something, you’re going to create problems imbalances. So for us, it was a no brainer. How about if I can perform all of these basic foundational movement push, pull, rotation level change, but adding load, magnitude, but also direction and leverage, come on, give it a break or too much loading and then bring more direction. So you can create balance. We call it balanced strength. When its sprinter come out of the block, he’s sprinting vertically or he’s spraying thing forward in a diagonal angle. That diagonal angle is the combination of gravity. The vertical axial load with friction. Friction is that horizontal load and in life, those two works together all the time. Every time you are walking your gravity and friction works together. So for you to propel yourself forward. So the diagonal angle with called the resulting is always present. How do you load that in the weight room? Can you load it? Absolutely yes. And that’s what we do. Alignment and football alignment every time they started the ball alignment or the line, how they moved vertical or they projected body diagonally, a fighter in the cage every time they charge for take down. Did they move vertically? Well they move, they project their body forward. Every time they punch they punch vertically. They punch with the leg and back leg is projected they are going to leave. So that fourth transferred efficiently through the core and then it can go straight line horizontal. We can go more of orbital like an angle, circular motion. You see the question is can you load those pattern in the weight room? Absolutely not to be confused with force specificity because some coaches believe or think that’s force specificity is replicating the skill of the sport in the weight room. No. Their responsibility of the strength and conditioning coach is to strengthen the musculature in the direction of this skill to support the skill. So that as a strength coach, I believe that what we’re doing right there as force specificity is meeting the requirements, but we need to exceed the by training all the lights of resistance that are foundational to create the complete total package that these athletes is in essence, in complete balance, balanced strength and only balanced strength in terms of his, he’s strong in every direction, but also at the joint balanced strength. Not only he’s very strong with the hip extensor, but he flexion. He’s very strong on his elbow flexion and extension shoulder. Not only he’s very strong on a shoulder flection, extinction, abduction, adduction. But one of the one of the forgotten movement that nobody low in the weight room. Circumduction, shoulders circumduction.
Corey Beasley [00:30:23]: What is that?
Jorge Bonnet [00:30:24]:Well think about swimming. When you do either freestyle swimming or backstroke, your shoulder, that joint is moving in this circular motion in physical therapy or medicine med school. They caught a circumduction not to be confused with circumcision. So I said, because the coach, I’m thinking like can we load that? Absolutely we can. So we do it at the gym. So another way to understand what PurMotion is all about. We pretty much, we, we, we balanced, we tried to find that sometimes we optimize, sometime we maximize, but as opposed to think too much loading which we recognize, what we do is say, you know what, let’s take the concept of loading that come from the Western world and bring it in. But you know what, the East, they bring the concept of flow, which is as an example, like from the martial arts, they own their stand, the understand human natural human biomechanics of movement. If I’m going to learn or do mobility, all that stuff. Do you think I’m going to do this mobility movement based or coming from physical therapy or delight? Hell, no. I want to do Tai Chi the movement. That’s real flow. And we have movement that resembled that Tai Chi movement or the Karate Wyckon, Wyckoff. I’m not kidding we love the Wyckon, Wyckoff and Corey, you were exposed to it. It’s cool, but if purpose based, because I’m trying to cover all the angles. So basically we have done a few things, we’ve tried to balance magnitude, which is heavy loading and kind of bring heavy loading down a little bit and increase a flow with force vectors direction. And adding more moving that, that, that have high carryover to the movement that you do outside the gym. There’s no point, I never saw a point in fighters are right when most of them don’t really like to do conventional Bible training because they’re right. It doesn’t transfer the [Inaudible 00:32:59]. They don’t know any better, but now they have a choice.
Corey Beasley [00:33:04]: Yeah. I think the point that resonated the most with me was that it’s not that the vertical stuff doesn’t work at all because it works and it’s good, but it’s overrated. And it’s just not the complete puzzle. So there’s other variables. There’s other angles that we can train. There’s other planes, animations and vectors that we’re missing that we’re not using. And we see little bits and pieces when somebody comes out with a new exercise or equipment or whatever it may be, it might touch on something that’s more multi planar or you know, type of stuff. But I think that’s the piece that’s important you can move in so many different directions and basically what you guys have done as you’ve taken something that can be very complex and simplified it down. And then tweaked some tools that are common tools and made them more user friendly. Is that right?
Jorge Bonnet [00:34:01]:That’s right. And talking about tools. If you look at you’ve been here for two days, you notice that our tools, I pretty much the same tools ancient empires use to build their nation, rope, pulleys, levers that way. That’s it. So the whole idea, the whole motivation was, what we need a system, a method to go by that is purpose based and it help you help to bring clarity, remove clutterness. Because 20 years, 30 years ago, we only have the [Inaudible 00:34:47]some machines and that is it, today we have so many toys. We have so many people doing so monkey stuff. And how do you know what’s legit, what’s not? It’s hard to piece everything together. So the more confusion the more the chances that the young strengthen coach, you’re going to go out there and if you don’t have a system to go by with method, you buy. So you become a trainer where the toy dictate your program. And I’m telling you, you’re going to get broke and your credit card will be maxed out every fucking month and because I was a victim of that, and I said, no, this is not it. It wasn’t that complicated back then. So I believe in simplicity and mathematics as you were exposed these today, I like mathematical equation, trigonometry. I share with you how we use the Pythagoras theory to explain angle bar training some AKA the landmine and why we had the only company in the world that has, so many attachments for the limelight, but there’s a purpose behind all of it. And I think when you went through all that explanation, that mathematical explanation, it was easier for you to embrace it as opposed to me pushing it to you. And also how we use geometry, to find your angles without using too much of scientific lingo, notice that I don’t like to use a lot of anatomical lingo stuff, because for me that’s a way of trying to show off that more than me. And you know what, when I was in judo and then wrestling my coach were never talked to me like, okay, keep your perform shoulder internal rotation. So your hand is overly pronated. So I mean, that’s, you know what F you’re talking about, it just put your foot this way back foot this way, chin up, lower, grab this way, push, bull. Simple vocabulary. Simple words. So that’s, that’s our mentality. Again we like to keep things very simple considering the complexity of our vocation.
Corey Beasley [00:37:24]: So if you guys are wanting to learn more about what you guys are doing or more about your methods, your programming and even the equipment and stuff like that you guys have built, what’s the best way for them to find you?
Jorge Bonnet [00:37:37]:Well, just like the way that you did, I mean, you can find those on our website, PurMotion.net. But I highly recommend to also visit our Instagram finally the same way we have a system on our programming in strengthen conditioning. We’ve been putting together content that I think is relevant for you guys the combat grappling community. And if you ever decide like to learn more as you’re going to notice that I don’t announce workshops or seminars, but we have open door policy. We got people like they come here for the weekend and they’re going to be with me. I mean, I should do more, like maybe big summits and what not, but my style is more face to face, more I want to spend time knowing the individual. And so that’s the best way PurMotion.net, the Instagram. I would say we have a YouTube channel as well as great way. It’s a great way to learn a little bit more about our movements and its simple way to start maybe testing the waters. I would say it’s simple attachment, if you like the landmine and maybe the Warhammer as a fighter. I mean I’ll definitely get into Warhammer and maybe on Omega, because I mean a fighter like you and I talked about earlier, if I see a fighter, we said thick, big trunk, they hips it’s going to be a long fight. And we do a lot when it comes to core strength and what not, but because most of our movement has deep roots in combat. I think a lot of MMA grapplers they will really enjoy because they’re going to see the carry over to what they do.
Corey Beasley [00:39:37]: Yeah, for sure. And guys, I’ll put all those links down below. But absolutely. Get out there and check that some of that stuff out. Ask questions and hopefully it will open some doors and open some eyes and make you think about some of the things you are just doing. And as we all are, we’re always improving and trying to change things and make it better. So Jorge thank you for your time. I appreciate it, man.
Jorge Bonnet [00:39:58]:Thank you for being here, it’s been a pleasure.