The unique new addition to Conor McGregor's training regime

‘Master of movement’ Ido Portal has been helping the Irish UFC star to prepare for Jose Aldo.

IF YOU’RE FAMILIAR with the name Ido Portal, it probably didn’t come as a surprise to you to learn that he was training with Conor McGregor last month at Straight Blast Gym.

Described by McGregor’s SBG team-mate Gunnar Nelson as ‘a master of movement’, Portal — who has a background in the Brazilian martial art of capoeira — has been credited with being a significant influence on McGregor’s impressive movement, which will be explained by a quick glance at his YouTube channel and website.

Ido London Real London Real

Portal, whose work has been inspiring athletes from a wide variety of sports, has been in Los Angeles over the last few days, helping McGregor in his preparations for Saturday night’s UFC featherweight title unification bout against Jose Aldo.

Followers of the interim title-holder on social media have probably noticed McGregor — and Gunnar Nelson too — sharing some pictures and videos of their work together.

With the focus seemingly on things like movement, stability and balance, it’s different to what you might traditionally expect from a fighter preparing for a world title bout.

In a recent interview with London Real, Portal said he plans to be at the MGM Grand Garden Arena for UFC 194 on Saturday night, when McGregor aims to defeat Aldo and become the undisputed UFC featherweight champion.

“I will find it very interesting to see Jose Aldo adapting to what Conor brings to the table,” Portal said. “His unpredictability, rhythm, distance, timing, control, the variety in vocabulary in offensive movement is just incredible.

“And from what I’ve seen from Jose Aldo, it doesn’t look like he can adapt to those things. It’s very easy for him with his power, like a sniper, sitting there on a target and shooting it. But once the target is constantly moving, to apply your fire is very, very difficult.”

London Real / YouTube

With the Dubliner coming off the back of another productive training camp under SBG head coach John Kavanagh on the Naas Road, it will be interesting to see if working directly with Ido Portal will have an immediate impact on his already-remarkable athleticism.

It’s also an indication of the rapidly changing approach to training for elite-level combat sports, because it’s a far cry from Rocky beating up a carcass in a meat locker.

Setanta Sports will air an hour-long UFC 194 preview show tonight

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