Posts Tagged ‘Eric Nicksick’

Eric Nicksick’s road to Xtreme Couture was unconventional to say the least. After signing up to become a member a little over seven years ago, Nicksick is now the gym manager of Xtreme Couture, as well as one of the grappling coaches for pro-practice and kids class.

“I came here to try and find that family, that camaraderie of working together to achieve a goal,” said Nicksick. “Once I got here … there’s a reason I’ve never left.”

The son of a Nevada high school football Hall of Fame coach, Nicksick grew up playing the sport he loved, eventually landing him a scholarship at the University of Nevada-Reno, before transferring for his final years at Dixie State College in Utah.

Upon graduation, he wanted to pick up a hobby that would keep him in shape long after his football days were over. After entering as a member, Nicksick not only manages Xtreme Couture, he’s taken over the reins of the kids grappling class offered Monday-Friday at 6 p.m.


“When I first took over the kids program, it was anywhere from four to twelve year olds in one group,” Nicksick said. “We all know you can’t have a four-year old grappling with a nine-year old because their attention span isn’t the same.” So as his first order of business, Nicksick separated the kids in groups of two: ages 4-7 in one and ages 8-12 in the other.


The kids are color-coded uniformly, with every kid starting out receiving a gray shirt. The next level up is yellow, which is awarded by progression of basic movements and submissions, followed by orange, which is awarded to kids whose skills advance far enough and who are willing to put themselves out there to compete.


“They don’t have to win the grappling tournament,” Nicksick said. “It’s performance based.” Although the students who’ve honed in on their skills long enough get rewarded for simply trying, Nicksick and other coaches take no slack when it comes to practicing.

Parents pay money to have their kids here, and getting their money’s worth is of the upmost importance, Nicksick says. If one kid is being disruptive, the coaches will make sure they are held accountable.

Since taking over, the kids program at Xtreme Couture has seen a significant increase, with young boys and girls ages 4-12 partaking in each and every curriculum.


“I want kids to go try out other gyms and experience other places,” Nicksick said. “I know what we have to offer and once they see what we have, they know that we are the place to be not only in Las Vegas, but in the country.”


To say Robert Follis is good at what he does is an understatement. Not only is he one of the lead trainers at Xtreme Couture, he’s also one of the best. A Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, Follis heads one of the more intense, yet highly skillful Gi and No-Gi jiu-jitsu classes in all of Mixed Martial Arts. Training the likes of current Ultimate Fighting Championship stars such as Evan Dunham, Martin Kampmann and Chael Sonnen, along with legends like Dan Henderson and Randy Couture, Follis has risen in MMA lure as one of the greatest technique coaches of all-time.


Follis got his start in Martial Arts at 22, when he was a bartender. “I was asked to throw someone out of the bar,” he said. “I didn’t know that was part of the job, so I told myself, ‘I better start training some Martial Arts’. I started working with one of the bouncers at the bar and that’s what got me started.” As his training progressed, he got wind of an up-and-coming fighter that was going to the UFC and needed some training partners. “I was training at a cutting-edge gym when I heard about [Randy] Couture needing someone to spar with,” Follis said. “No one really knew who he was at the time so I thought, ‘yea, I’ll go throw some punches at that guy.”

Those training days turned into training nights, and soon a friendship blossomed between Couture and Follis. Eventually, a career was formed for Follis amidst all the training and sparring sessions, and he’s never looked back.

The son of a preacher, Follis has long taken after his father in order to get the full potential out of his students. Analogies are a big part of how Follis coaches, and says the use of them makes it easier for his students to correlate what he tries to bestow upon them in the MMA world.  “At one point, tying our shoes was extremely confusing,” he said. “The more you practiced it though, the easier it became. That’s exactly how jiu-jitsu is.”Image

His training with adolescents and young adults helps prepare them for where the sport may be heading in the future, no matter how adverse or challenging it may seem.

“You can be in massively good shape,” Follis said. “But if you doubt yourself and don’t believe in what you’re doing, you won’t succeed. Conversely, you can be the most positive thinker in the world but if you don’t ready your body, you will fail.”


His love for the sport intertwines with his affection for changing people’s lives with what he teaches at the gym. The self-promoting change has been personal for Follis as he says it was Martial Arts that led him out of a place in his twenties where he lacked any direction and felt unsure of what he wanted in life.


“Here’s what really makes me love Martial Arts and MMA,” Follis said. “It’s the ability to change your life solely based on the training. To take those lessons and apply them to facets of your life; that’s what it’s all about. That’s huge.”

Instructors from Xtreme Couture teamed up at the North American Grapplng Association (NAGA) in Las Vegas on March 4th to demonstrate grappling techniques to the crowd.  NAGA holds events all over the United States and is one of the largest grappling tournaments in the world.  Pictured below are (far left)-John Hahn, Jimmy Jones, Kui Gonsalves, Dennis Davis and students.  Pictured (far right)-Kui Gonsalves, Dennis Davis, John Hahn and Jimmy Jones with student participant.


Join MMA Legend and UFC Hall of Fame Fighter Randy Couture Saturday May 7th, 2011 for a two wheel event – Charity Poker Run.

Event Registration Starts at 9am – 10:30am – Randy’s group leaves at 10am sharp. 

O School Choppers
5725 South Valley View
Las Vegas, NV 89118 

If you ride, then come out to support the men and women who protect this country everyday.  Brave soldiers who get injured need additional help above what the government can provide and that’s where the Xtreme Couture G.I. Foundation comes into play.

Ride with:

Randy Couture – 6x UFC Champ
Cast of  “The Expendables”
Jay Glazer  – NFL (Fox)
Chris Angel – Illusionist
“BIG” John McCarthy  – MMA Referee
Tom Atencio – Affliction
David Zayas – Actor
Sean Flanery – Actor
Mike Austin – Musician
+Plus Many, Many More!

The Xtreme Couture G.I. Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit corporation, was founded by Randy Couture to honor the veterans of America’s Armed Forces. The foundation was especially formed to raise money and awareness for those wounded in action and their families. To date, more than 24,000 U.S. troops have been wounded in the war against terrorism, which doesn’t include the many more suffering the mental effects.

Many of the injuries are traumatic amputations, gunshot wounds, burns and blast injuries that will retire these brave men and woman from the armed forces. Even though some of these men and woman are severely injured, they have the courage, strength and determination to win this battle.

The Xtreme Couture G.I. Foundation’s goal is to help these brave men and women fulfill any of their unmet needs as they return back to civilian life.

Photos from our last event/

UFC 127 Viewing Party

When: Saturday, Feb 26th

Time: 6pm – PPV @ 7PM

Join us to watch UFC 127 on our huge 20ft. screen!
Watch from inside our cage or kick back on our mat area.

Ya we are not a bar and that’s how we like it!

Members Free – Guests $10.