Competitor Spotlight

Meet Bobby “Nasty Boy” Harris In Our First-Ever Martial Arts Feature

“Nasty Boy” Bobby Harris vs Aziz – Dec 11, 2012 (RIP Gerald Dawson – corner ref)

About: LIFTED Competitor Spotlight – Sport Karate Series

*Updated 5/25/21

LIFTED

As a family of martial artists, we’ve experienced our fair share of tough competitions, and demanding training sessions. Since discovering the amazing benefits of hemp, we have completely altered our approach to health and wellness in and out of the ring.

Now, we’d like to share those benefits with you, so in the spring of 2020, we started a small Hemp-based wellness company called LIFTED, featuring our premium brand of CBD.

In the sport karate series of LIFTED Competitor Spotlight, we decided to sit down and chat with some of the talented athletes that have wowed us with their skills through the years, catch up, and introduce them to LIFTED!

Just as the world dives into this “natural revolution” in hemp and wellness, we are looking forward to being a trustworthy provider of full and broad spectrum phytocannabinoid-rich hemp-based wellness essentials to all bodies in motion.


Catching Up With Bobby “Nasty Boy” Harris

As a long-time competitor, Bobby knows what it’s like to push his body beyond limits over the years. So naturally, we couldn’t resist sending him a bottle of our CBD Sports Cream to see if he thinks LIFTED has what it takes to be Black Belt Approved.

He was willing to try it out and give his opinion on how effectively it supports a fighter’s body in muscle recovery and flexibility.

And so, with close connections to the martial arts community, we decided to put LIFTED to the test.

Grand Master Bobby Harris

About Grand Master Harris

For anyone who is familiar with Sport Karate over the last few decades, this particular athlete may need no introduction.

But, Just in case…

Bobby Harris is a 7th Degree Black Belt Grand Master in Tae Kwon Do. He was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pa. Bobby is a life-long practitioner, a formidable tournament competitor, and a multi-time champion.

During his extensive martial arts journey, he credits both Mike Conroy and the late Gerald Dawson for offering him the best advice in the ring.

Grand Master Harris was a recipient of the “Living Legends Award,” an honor given by Robert Everhart (RIP) in 2003.

He was also inducted as part of The Philadelphia National Karate Team (PNKT) into the Philadelphia Historic Martial Arts Society Hall of Fame in 2014, among many other accolades.

Selflessly committed to a career in law enforcement, Bobby serves the community, as a corrections officer in Pennsylvania.

More recently, he spends his free time helping friends and co-workers address their fitness goals and making people laugh with his hilarious TikTok antics.

Notably, after decades of martial arts competition and a full-time career, he still a remarkable opponent in the ring.


Question: What was your most memorable match – good or bad?

Bobby "Nasty Boy" Harris and fellow students at Chang Moo Kwan

Training

But, how did it all get started for him?

As a young boy, Bobby attended martial arts classes in West Philadelphia where he grew up.

Beginning at the age of nine years old, he proudly worked on his skills, reaching his 1st degree black belt by the age of 15.

The training and discipline he received in the art of Tae Kwon Do came under the skillful instruction and leadership of Grand Master Ozzie Wright Jr. of Chang Moo Kwan Tae Kwon Do

(CMK) is located at 5708 Market Street in West Philadelphia.

However, Bobby wasn’t alone in mastering his forms and fighting skills at CMK. Just as the students had a very skillful instructor, Grand Master Wright in turn, had many talented and hungry youth under his experienced guidance.


Question: Was there ever an opponent that you wanted to match up with but never got the chance?

One Huge Family

Among the Chang Moo Kwan family, dedicated young men and women continue to help push each other to excel, but the knowledge sharing doesn’t stop there.

Its actually quite the norm to see visitors from other martial arts schools join the CMK students on the training floor at any given time.

Although it would be awesome to elaborate on the vast talent that was under Grand Master Wright’s teachings, and the multitude of phenomenal martial artists he helped to “raise” out of the heart of West Philly, well keep that on the back burner for another day.


Question: Who were your favorite tournament promotors in the past?

Sport Karate Competition

After entering his first martial arts competition at age 11, Bobby quickly outgrew local fighters on the scene. Within a few years, it became difficult for him and the crew to find serious competition.

During our interview, he credits one of his instructors – Harold Woodley – another amazing kicker out of Chang Moo Kwan. Harold inspired him to push forward and begin traveling on the national circuit.

Bobby reflected, “I’m glad he told me to get out there.” “That’s when everything changed,” he remembered in fun.

“It was my first national, at the time I had entered the peewee-advanced division as a Red Belt competitor in a Green Dragon martial arts tournament.”

After that experience, it was set in stone – there was definitely no looking back!

Grand Master Harris had begun on a journey that eventually led him to rise to championship status in premier Sport Karate leagues such as NASKA, MASMAL, WAKO, and ISKA among others.


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A Challenging Opponent

By this time, Bobby had earned himself fitting nicknames such as “nasty boy” and “axe murderer” – names that highlighted his explosive, multi-directional kicking skills and his devastatingly accurate axe kick. Both of which he executed effectively in the ring.

When asked to think of the most challenging opponent he faced during his stay in the 18-29 and 30 – 39 divisions, Bobby’s thoughts turned to the NASKA circuit.

He spoke of Jadi Tension – another dynamic fighter out of New York, “It was a real mental thing with me and Jadi,” Bobby stated.

(Photo is a clip from the former On Point Magazine)

The Legends

During our chat, we also touched on Bobby’s favorite matches from “back in the day,” with legends such as Steve “Nasty” Anderson (RIP), Kevin Thompson (RIP), Terry Creamer, Billy Blanks, and some of the other titans of the ring. Bobby says he used to read about them in popular prints like Karate Illustrated and Black Belt Magazine.

“When I was a new nobody coming up on the national circuit… It was crazy being right there, talking to the likes of Mafia Holloway, Billy Blanks, and those guys,” he commented.


Question: Did you have a signature of favorite move/technique?

Teams

As adults, Bobby and some of his closest classmates – Lil Oz “Sniper” (RIP Ozzie Wright III), Carlos Flowers, Shawn & Perky Jones, among others, eventually went on to become important members of the infamous Philadelphia National Karate Team (PNKT).

The Philadelphia National Karate Team was comprised of many top ranked fighters out of Philadelphia and the surrounding areas.

Although Bobby stood his ground as an individual point fighter on the national tournament scene, team fights was where a lot of the excitement was at the time. I’m talking, adrenaline pumping combat between the best of the best. For many athletes they were all the glory to participate in, and extremely popular to watch.

Major Excitement


In order to put it all into perspective, you should understand that the martial arts scene was on fire back in the day!

No matter how well a promotor planned ahead, from a spectator’s point of view, ringside was always standing room only.

You could literally feel the excitement in the room as popular fighters from all over the country would line up for some team action from the early 90s – the early 2000s.

Sometimes, you would even see men and women partnering up on the spot, just to get a chance to get out there and participate in mixed events.


What are promotors doing now to keep the game alive since the pandemic?

With opposing teams like Metro, DKT, JPM, Straight UP, Team Elite, Team Next Level, and many others, the Philadelphia National Karate Team had many outstanding athletes waiting to put Philly to the test.

And boy did all of these competitors deliver throughout the years!

Tournament Highlights – Video Credit: Black and Blue Video

After a long stretch with PNKT, Bobby pressed on with other popular teams such as Integra-Med, Bulls On The Beach, Team Miami Vice, WTF, and Team MASMAL to name a few. He also continued making waves as an independent tournament competitor up until 2019.


Was there anyone you admired as a young aspiring competitor?

Marco Johnson competing at Challenge of Champions II Martial Arts Tournament 2011 Promotors Bobby Harris/Tai Kline Philadelphia, Pa

Teaching and Tournament Promotions

Being a competitor was one thing, but Grand Master Harris also spent some time teaching and running a school for youth martial arts out of West Philadelphia, and also Delaware County, Pa with former partner Tai Kline.

The pair also promoted three successful martial arts tournaments together – Challenge of Champions I, II, and III. Each tournament successfully drew prominent Junior and Adult weapons, forms, and sparring competitors from across the country.

Kayliv Ivy competing at Challenge of Champions Martial Arts Tournament 2010 – Promotors Bobby Harris/Tai Kline Philadelphia, Pa

Bobby’s Fun Facts:

Favorite Tournament Promotors:

  • Ozzie Wright Jr
  • Ken Eubanks
  • Charlie Lee

Favorite Tournament Venues:

  • Blue Grass Nationals – Galt House Hotel
  • Compete Nationals – Pomona California

Favorite Center Referee:

  • Manny Aguilera
    (he says with a big laugh)

Dream Match-Up:

  • Bobby Harris vs Mike Pombiero

Favorite Uniforms:

  • Reksuits by Jerry Fontanez

Favorite Fun Thing To Pass Time:

  • TikTok shenanigans with his partner @thee_ms.fox

Favorite Old-school Sitcoms

  • Three Stooges
  • Abbot & Costello

Favorite Food

  • Seafood, specifically crabs

LIFTED CBD Sports Cream

“…It was good, that’s why I used it every night.
It was my comfort”

-Bobby Harris, on LIFTED CBD Sports Cream

Bobby’s Sports Cream Review

Bobby gave LIFTED CBD Sports Cream a 10 on the comfort scale, saying that he enjoyed the deep warming sensation, followed by cooling relief.

He also said that he would definitely recommend LIFTED to a friend or fellow martial artist, but jokingly stated that they would have to get their own bottle because he isn’t sharing his.

LIFTED CBD Sports Cream

Formulated to actively support and relieve healthy muscles – this deep relief cream is a tournament bag necessity! It’s great for ring warriors, adventurers, yogis, and active bodies of all kinds.

For use before, during, or after physical activity to keep your muscles moving in comfort throughout the day.

  • Helps maintain joint health and flexibility
  • Penetrates deeply with Cooling and Warming effects of menthol & camphor
  • Vegan Formula with Beneficial Essential Oils

Use code “axekick” at checkout for 15% Savings on LIFTED CBD Sports Cream – March 14th

“I liked it a lot, it felt really good on my lower back, legs, and arms, now I just need someone to take this stuff and massage it into my upper back and shoulders…”

-Bobby Harris, on LIFTED CBD Sports Cream

What’s Next?

Grand Master Harris had begun working on a comeback for the 2020 tournament season after suffering a pulled groin in 2019. The only sports injury in his entire martial arts career.

Bobby says he wants to be ready for whatever may be coming up as far as competition.

Although Covid-19 shut down gatherings and sporting events for a while, he is still coaching other students and training when possible. At times, he links up for intense training sessions with other dominant players from the tournament scene like multi-time champion, Jason Bourelly (Tankson).


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How to Connect With “Nasty Boy” Bobby Harris

Contact details in the video clip.

Bobby is available for sparring clinics and seminars, as well as private lessons and personal training.

Enjoy some laughs @ i_am_bobby_harris on TikTok. And remember LIFTED is a trusted source for premium CBD wellness essentials!


Thank you for taking the time out to enjoy this Competitor Spotlight. We hope to bring you many more in the near future.

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-LIFTED, Competitor Spotlight