Grandmaster Dr. Mak Yuree is the world record holder as the strongest shin kicker in the world. He has been featured as one of the few living super humans on Discovery Channel and ‘Believe it or not’ for his ability to break three baseball bats with one kick. He is a living legend of psychophysical training and martial arts. He is known as the ‘Thunder shin Man’ because of his famous thunder like shin kick.
Dr. Yuree was the first of the four children in his family. After his birth, his father Shamsul Alam, a writer and the former chief engineer of Bangladesh Power Board, named him Yuree after the name of the soviet pilot and cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin. Dr. Yuree was interested in martial arts since his childhood and started practicing martial arts at the age of 9.
He studied from class seven to class twelve in Jhenidah Cadet College. In cadet colleges, there are societies like physics society, hiking, music society and etc. that take place during the weekends. Cadets get a scope to engage themselves in extracurricular activities in those particular topics or fields. But there was no society on Martial Arts before Dr.Yuree’s time, nor there is today. Dr. Yuree was one of the very first cadets to start a new society and that being a martial arts society. However, the society only lasted for the few years when he was a cadet in Cadet College.
During our conversation Dr. Yuree says, “I was very fortunate to have Colonel Nurul Anwar and Major Tareq Hamid as my Principal and Adjutant respectively who liked and strongly supported my idea.” Every year annual athletics event takes place around December. Cadet participate in various field and track events and compete amongst themselves. In addition to these events, cadets also perform P.T. display and local music & dance before the audience which comprises of all the teachers and cadets’ parents. Surprisingly during the graduating year of Dr. Yuree’s batch, they performed a Martial Arts display instead of a P.T. Display. It was something that happened only once in Jhenidah Cadet College.
Dr. Yuree’s interest for martial arts was so intense that he took every activity as his training. He stopped using pillows, mattresses, blankets, and even mosquito nets only to train his body to fight back all kind of resistance. Even though this indubitably sounds silly and people did consider him crazy at that time, but in the end all of that craze turned out to be a boon for him. “But after all these years, I am glad that I went through with everything”, smilingly says Mr. Yuree.
Dr. Yuree always had a passion for the “Uniform”, which is why he went to a cadet college in the first place, however the idea of regimenting his life in the timetabled life of the army was not something he aspired for. So, he decided to learn more about martial arts and self-defense after graduating from Cadet College and picked a completely different path of life.
Dr. Yuree graduated in Security Management from the NSA (National Security Agency, USA), and went on to get over 16 professional certifications from different universities, most of which are in the UK and USA. To mention a few, there is the USA Standard-Commissioned Officers Course of Security Management and Law under the Texas Board of Private Investigation and Security Agencies, Houston, USA, Fire Marshall, Bank Security, Airport Security, Aviation Security, etc. He has a line of security training organizations, namely Rangers and Combat Self Defense, as well as his very own sports organization, International Butthan Federation.
After training for over 20 years kicking tree trunks bound in ropes, he has mastered 40 different techniques of martial arts. He is a seventh degree black belt holder in Bando and tenth degree black belt in Butthan. His main contributing style is Burmese Bando (Gharana). Once, he came across an American Journal where it said that martial arts had originated from the Indian Sub-continent and the question–“how come these South Asian Indians were the first ones to land this field whereas we know the Shaolin Temple of China as the cradle of martial arts?” struck him. Such inquisitive queries about the history of martial arts made Dr. Yuree visit many historical sites across India, China, Myanmar and other parts of the world to unearth the past of martial arts. Dr. Yuree expresses that mastering too many systems is nothing of credit. Anyone with enough sincerity and dedication can learn anything. He considers being able to visit so many countries a greater achievement in pursuit of learning the heart of all these different forms of arts.
During the interview Dr. Yuree says, “South Asia was the pioneer in the art of psychophysical training, however there isn’t much space for it in the modern sporting world”. Dr. Yuree shares a few of his findings while digging deeper into the history of South Asian Martial Arts. Yoga, one of the world’s oldest psychophysical training systems, is a gift from the Indian Subcontinent. It is said that the arts of combat evolved from the South Asian region and reached the Henan Province of China in 520 A.D through the Buddhist monk ‘Bodhidharma’. This introduction led to the training of monks in the Shaolin Monastery and ultimately to the creation of Shaolin Kung Fu.
With the aim to revive this lost heritage of South Asia, Dr. Yuree has come up with ‘Butthan Federation and Sports’ which is NSA approved. The federation provides psychophysical training to people. It is also promoting “Butthan” in the United States, Europe, and South East Asia and is going forward with a hope to participate in the SAARC Games and Asian Games. Dr. Yuree says, “We have promoted Butthan psychophysical training and are giving training support to national security forces like SSF, RAB, and Police and also to private ones.” The ‘Butthan’ team has worked on youth and women empowerment in Bangladesh at upazilla levels. They are looking at two to three national level championships on an annual basis to promote sports.
Even though Dr. Yuree is well acclaimed for his security training and his work with the revival of the South Asian tradition of Martial arts, Dr. Yuree is most famous for his thunder shin-kicks. He holds four world records till date. The first one was for breaking two baseball bats with one kick. The next one was for breaking three bats with one kick. After that, he broke three baseball bats placed in a horizontal bundle (in a triangular position) with five kicks in 20 seconds in Birmingham. The final record is for having the most neuro-engagement activity in the world.
Yuree’s superhuman recognition is not a surprise, considering he has 4 world records. Discovery Channel has a scheme to identify people with extraordinary skills in the world. It consists of five sections – arm power, lung power, sound power, abdomen power and leg power. The criterion to participate in these categories was for anyone was to have at least one world record. From a primary selection of 60 people 20 advanced to the semifinals. And after facing interview by scientists and going through numerous lab tests and research finally, they chose 5 people as super-humans in these 5 categories. Dr. Yuree was selected in the leg strength category. Afterwards, Discovery Channel made a documentary named ‘Superhuman Showdown’ on each of the 5 persons.
What the scientists discovered during the tests was that Dr. Yuree was able to generate enough energy to break those baseball bats and could engage most of his muscle nerves in a split second. And that was a questions to the scientists of Discovery Channel because he was the smallest and lightest among the other ‘superhumans’.
As per a research by Wayne University in America, the minimum strength required to break one baseball bat is 740 pounds. Dr. Yuree has broken three bats at a time which means he has been able to generate about 2000 pounds of energy. Theoretically, this seems impossible, however Dr. Yuree says, it can be done if our body and brain function as a team.
Grandmaster Dr. Yuree can use 96% of his muscle fibers and fire neurons in seconds. This has been possible due to meditation. He says. “I can connect with my brain at an instant and convey my needs to it.” He explains it further: “If you have a big high quality speaker, a high quality amp, and a mouthpiece, but a poor quality thin cable for sound transmission, the produced sound will obviously be poor. This is exactly what happens with us. People have big muscles but they can’t use it because they often can’t connect with their brains consciously.”
“There is nothing that can replace the impact of proper focus and concentration. There are four frequency levels of our brain. Our brain functions best at the a– state. This state is very good for the attainment of skills. It can be helpful for all kinds of learning, be it swimming, studies, or even driving. We need to realize both our physical and mental compositions. We hear that meditators and saints often heal their internal organs through meditation. With enough practice, less deviation, and plenty of patience anyone can increase their concentration powers.”
Mind is the software of our body and without a well programmed mind, we can never perform better. Without software a computer cannot function, so is the case with us. And so, Dr. Yuree advices everyone to always keep a clear mind and a healthy body and also focus on connecting them. Because, we are the best when our mind and brain function together as a team.
“You are essentially who you create yourself to be and all that occurs in your life is the result of your own making.”
-Stephen Richards, Think Your way to Success: Let Your Dreams Run Free
 ‘Butthan’ is a Sanskrit word, also spelled ‘Vyutthan’, which means defense with distinction and awakening. It is said to be the noble art of peace and enlightenment. It is a South Asian combat sport and system of personal development. People have a misconception about martial arts. They think of it only as physical prowess, more of a performance, but martial art is not just about physical skills. It requires a lot of meditation and spiritual consciousness. ‘Butthan’ focuses on balancing the body, mind, and spirit for a happy and successful life style.
‘Butthan’ goes back to the Indus Valley civilization. The oldest of all arts is a form of self-defense and it is called ‘Vajra Musti’. A 5000 year old relic found in the Mohenjodaro Archaeological Site gives proof of the existence psychophysical training in the Indian subcontinent during those times. The relic also proves that the concept of Butthan is that old.
[Utmost dedication has been given to transcribe and write the interviews as flawlessly as possible . However, the information and events shared in this book might not be cent percent perfect and there can always be human error in collection and dissemination of information. It is thus requested to forgive any mistake, if found, in this book. At the same time, I request all readers and visitors not to copy the content of this book without the written consent of the author of this book, as these interviews are the author’s original work that has required a lot of hard work and patience. The full book can be purchased here.]