Watching MMA on TV is one thing, but if you are interested in learning the skills to ground and pound, you need our article on how to enroll in mixed martial arts schools.
What you'll need:
- a mouth guard
- MMA shorts or sweats
- bag gloves and or MMA gloves
- a cup (for Brazil nuts when you start developing your Jujitsu groundwork – hey, everybody needs a snack. Actually, this is to protect your family jewels, so make sure it fits right before you fight.)
- shin pads for sparring (you may not need these to start)
- head gear for sparring (you may not need these to start)
- Check your health. Before enrolling in a Mixed Martial Arts School it's important to be sure you are ready for the level of activity. Visit a doctor to get a physical and verify you are ready for Mixed Martial Arts.
- Do your research. Check out the local Mixed Martial Arts schools online. Many schools will post their philosophy to training online. Also, check reviews of the school to make sure they have a track record of quality, safety and consistency.
- Understand the school's strengths and weaknesses. The Mixed Martial Arts include upright striking skills such as boxing, Thai boxing and kick boxing as well as ground skills such as Brazilian Jujitsu or combat submission wrestling. Most schools are good in one area, but not as good with other skills. Some schools hire specialty instructors for each skill. You want to make sure you are working with instructors that know their skill from experience and are not aping skills they've seen on DVD or TV.
- Visit schools. Look at the facilities before enrolling in a mixed martial arts school. Schools should have a number of boxing bags in good condition, mats for wrestling and grappling, and safety gear such as head gear and pads new students can use. Some great schools are in warehouses, so the building isn't as important as quality instructors and the gear available.
- Talk to instructors and students. The school you will want to enroll in for mixed martial arts is one where there is a kind of relaxed respect among students and instructors. If students are getting black eyes from sparring in their first week and are intimidated by other students and instructors it's a good bet you want to enroll in another mixed martial arts school.
- Try before you buy. Many Mixed Martial Arts schools give students a free week or a few classes to get a feel for the school before signing a contract. If you don't see anything posted, ask. You might need to sign a waiver of liability, but it's worth trying the school before you sign up for a yearly contract.
- Read the contract. What are the conditions of the contract? The best Mixed Martial Arts schools want to make sure they are taking on committed students, and you want to make sure you are signing up for quality training.
- Train, train, train. Finding the right place to enroll in mixed martial arts training is the best feeling in the world. You'll be able to work hard, learn hard and advance your skills quickly. There won't be ridicule or pressure, and you'll look forward to training.