I am so very fortunate to have helped thousands of members to achieve their goals over the last 30+ years. Making a difference in all of those lives is an amazing honor and one for which I am sincerely grateful. Most of our awesome members want simple things, to drop a few pounds, gain some confidence, self defense or just have a great time while learning something new and getting a great workout around super positive people.
But, a small percentage, “Want to be an MMA fighter!” Watching champions compete on Television can be really exciting and a little deceptive. MMA fighters, the good ones, make it look easy. With off the hook athleticism and an ease of movement developed through countless hours of repetition, sometimes viewers, both casual and obsessive can be fooled into thinking it won’t take much for them to be the next Anderson Silva or Georges St. Pierre.
Pretty much nobody thinks that they can play professional football, basketball or Soccer by training a couple of times per week. But, nearly every day I meet young men and women, who think that they can compete in an MMA cage, at a high level, by coming in for class now and again.
What it takes to be an MMA Fighter!
The truth is, it’s very hard to win a fight. It takes hours of skill development, conditioning, sparring and more sacrifice than many people are willing to give. Ultimately the trick is to train harder and smarter than the other guy. And, this other guy is a MADMAN. He runs everyday. He’s tearing a hole through heavy bags, he’s murdering Wrestling and Jiu Jitsu training partners. And, don’t get me started on the damage he’s doing daily in Muay Thai training, this guy is a leg breaker. At least that’s the guy you want to be preparing for, because HE MAY BE THE ONE WHO SHOWS UP.
To fight as an amateur I expect you to be running 3+ miles 5-6 times per week ( I prefer an international style run as opposed to a static pace run). If you can do sprint training (400 & 800 meters), mountains or stadiums…..better still. You should include 20 minutes everyday of jumping rope. 5 deadly serious rounds on the heavy bag should be what you consider a good start. If your body structure calls for it strength training needs to be a factor.
Then there is skills training. Being an MMA fighter is a Herculean task. You must learn and refine your skills in Boxing, Muay Thai, Jiu Jitsu and Wrestling. You can afford no weakness as any that you will have will be PAINFULLY exploited by any good opponent. Then as you these skills mature you must continually be integrating each, transitioning from striking to take downs to ground work and back. Each skill must work in a symbiotic manner to create openings for the other.
Never pigeonhole yourself with the old, “I’m more of a Muay Thai guy” or “I specialize in Jiu Jitsu.” In today’s MMA, you can’t afford to be a one trick pony. You must be an everything guy and you had better be solid at all of it. The MMA fighters that compete on the local level today are easily more rounded than 90% of the elite MMA fighters 20 years ago and that’s who you’ll be competing against.
At this point, if you’re thinking, “That doesn’t sound too bad, I could do that!” Outstanding, I like your attitude! But, we haven’t started talking about diet, recovery, rounding up sparring partners, paying for your medical and licensing fees, opponents falling out at the last moment, getting to bed early every night…. Recently, I was at a Belator Event and the commission drug tested every single fighter. So, if you had a little medical marijuana to help with your, “Glaucoma” be prepared to test dirty and to get suspended and have some of your purse withheld.
The sacrifice necessary to be an MMA Champion are unequivocally unreasonable, unrelenting and sometimes seem to be our of balance when looked at as a cost/reward equation. Then again, standing in the cage with your hands raised, knowing all that you have put into achieving some measure of glory is pretty amazing too. If you want to be a fighter, good for you. But, if you feel this is your path, know what will be expected of you.
If not an MMA fighter but something other is your goal, if you just want to learn some serious Muay Thai, Jiu Jitsu or Kickboxing…. We can help you with that too. Whatever you goals, if you are willing to put in the work, we will be there for you.
I can’t wait to see you our gym soon! Contact Us Today and Start Your MMA Fighting Carreer!
Categorised in: MMA
This post was written by Eric Nolan