Tell me about MMA

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  • Tell me about MMA
  • Premier Icon thetallpaul
    Subscriber

    Don’t know about MMA, but studied karate when I was a bit younger. One thing I would suggest is go to several clubs and see if they do trial sessions.
    You need to fit with the instructors style of teaching too. Some are idiots, some are OK, but there are a few really good instructors who command an immense amount of respect for their skills/manner/humanity. Find one of those if you can.
    If I hadn’t moved away from Sheffield I’d still be studying with the same guy (Vic Cruise – Wado Ryu karate).
    Also there will be styles of MA that suit you more/less. I have a long reach so found karate worked for me. Friends did Wing Chung (sp?) Kung Fu which is very close quarters and I find immensely difficult to get into.
    Most of all make sure you have fun. MA is great exercise and the social aspect is usually really good too.

    klunky
    Member

    Having done a few martial arts my opinion is… it doesn’t matter what you pick. Some people are good at scrapping some are not so good. A person great at judo will give a good fight to a person good at MMA/Karate/Kung fu.
    Essentially if you do regular sparring then you will become better at it.

    Go to a few classes of each and see which is the most fun.

    Any one who thinks that style X is the best is probably currently practicing it and will be like a new 650b owner stating that it brings the trails alive.

    Milkie
    Member

    I’m guessing you don’t know anyone who does MMA? If you do ask them, they should know the good from the bad. Most places welcome new people, if they don’t then they ain’t the place for you and a lot have a beginners night too.

    Here’s a little video a friend recorded from a training session, although this day they were practicing stand up/kick boxing, gives you a taster of what to expect.

    [video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLSvYtzIxgo[/video]
    PS The guy in blue who is the tutor is/was the national kickboxing champion.

    My friends fitness on his mountain bike increased a lot through MMA. I just wish I could try it but I have a lot of broken bones & metal in my face already.

    Premier Icon BillOddie
    Subscriber

    What do you want to get out of MMA?

    It is a sport rather than a martial art, and it does take the best bits of Wrestling, BJJ, Boxing/Kick Boxing and apply it as a sport.

    I used to do Judo and Ju-jutso all the way through my youth and really enjoyed it and was quite good at it.

    A lot of martial arts schools especially JJ and BJJ do MMA too.

    Premier Icon dknwhy
    Subscriber

    MMA basically mashes together a mix of martial arts for ultimate effect rather than the spiritual side of things.
    Normally grappling/ground fighting with a striking discipline. Most that i’ve seen opt for thai boxing and Brazilian ju-jitsu (BJJ).
    I’ve never trained at an MMA club but i’ve did kung-fu kickboxing when I was younger and BJJ for a bit a few years back.
    BJJ is great fun to learn the grappling and hold techniques. Highly recommend giving it a go. It’s like a game of chess but wrestling where you try to outsmart your opponent and reverse holds. The experienced guys inevitably win but it’s great on the rare occasion when you catch them with a sneeky ankle lock and get them to tap out…

    soobalias
    Member

    where do you want to go with it?

    what do you want from a training session, technique or free sparring?

    if you actually want to fight then MMA will combine moving/striking with ground work and IMO being very good at one or the other may help you out, being confident with both gives you reasonable self defense.

    the background of the trainer is very important

    RaveyDavey
    Member

    MMA is a lot better if you already have a good grounding in a martial art. The sport is also full of UFC wannabes so choose your club cardfully. Muay Thai and BJJ was my route but eventually just went to ju jitsu for the mental discipline side of it.

    the background of the trainer is very important

    Not strictly true. In Judo I used to train with the best in the country, some of them have gone on to coaching and IMHO are not very good at it, others I know who weren’t at the same ‘fighting’ standard have made much better coaches by being able to teach and articulate better, physical prowess doesnt breed coaching prowess

    Interesting, thanks all for the responses.

    What I’m looking for is:

    * Regular classes so that I force myself to get out of the office in the evenings and to help keep my workload and work/life balance under control
    * Better fitness and flexibility with all of the benefits that will hopefully bring to the bike
    * Definitely keen on exploring the mental aspect in terms of better focus/confidence etc

    To be honest, not too fussed how I get those benefits above, I just know I need to make it happen and martial arts seem like a good way to go. I work and live in central London and the dominant discipline seems to be MMA.

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Subscriber

    I always think the best coaches are those who weren’t naturals and really had to really work at learn the technique. Gifted people tend to assume that everyone else finds it just as easy…

    Premier Icon muggomagic
    Subscriber

    You’d learn more to start with from a specific discipline. Again look around at various schools. IME the smaller independent schools have been better than the big ones as generally there is an emphasis on training students just to pass a grading.
    I know a couple of people that train in MMA and they’re not actually very good at anything other than brawling and seem to have very little control when sparring which I don’t mind so much as it means I can hit them back just as hard 🙂

    Premier Icon dknwhy
    Subscriber

    The dominant discipline probably just appears to be MMA because it’s highly pulicised to attract the UFC crowd. There are plenty of clubs around if you look for a particular art.
    If you want fitness, spiritual enhancement and discipline, a more traditional art may be your best option.

    I know there are a few martial arts advocates on the forum and I’m thinking seriously about giving them a go myself. It seems there are loads of MMA schools and the challenge will be separating the good from the bad, but I don’t actually know much about MMA.

    My (perhaps naive) view of things like karate is that they emphasise a mental aspect to the practise as much as the physical, and that’s very appealing. Is MMA the same? Does it effectively cherry pick the best bits of other martial arts to make the ultimate combination?

    Would love to hear folks experiences/thoughts. Thanks.

    Mr Woppit
    Member

    Whilst you are waiting to decide about the “spiritual” side of MA, this may afford some amusement.

    [video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OGlaamOERJk[/video]

    bencooper
    Member

    * Regular classes so that I force myself to get out of the office in the evenings and to help keep my workload and work/life balance under control
    * Better fitness and flexibility with all of the benefits that will hopefully bring to the bike
    * Definitely keen on exploring the mental aspect in terms of better focus/confidence etc

    Perhaps not MMA – have a look at Kuk Sool, Aikido, Taekwondo or similar. I did KS to a reasonably high level, it was fantastic for all those things, even without getting into any sparring.

    For the ‘mental’ side its generally associated with the more traditional martial arts, having said this most combat sports where you have ‘full contact’ the mental side is a byproduct as you will notice your ‘reaction times’etc will improve

    klumpy
    Member

    Well, briefly, the idea of “fighting” (as opposed to a particular slice of fighting) as a sport or art dates at least as far back as the ancient Greek Olympics, in which it was called pankration.

    More recently a Brazilian family with a great belief in emphasising grappling and ground work in combat had a history of inviting all-comers to try and “beat their guy” in a no holds barred fight – and they always won. They invented the UFC as a big infommercial to market their school in the US; the plan being to hold it, and have Royce Gracie win it. And he did. (Also look up Japan’s ‘King of Pancrase’, which was going on about the same time but in a quieter way.)

    For a while the pattern was that grapplers beat strikers, but the strikers started to learn to grapple and could force the fight to stay where they liked it, and so the grapplers learned the striking game. And lo and behold, MMA is now a style in itself.

    I’m not sure that it’s overtly spiritual though; have you thought about yoga..?

    Who else thaught this was about welding?

    soobalias
    Member

    klumpy has the spiritual side of MMA in the bag.

    im sure the yoga comment was part tongue in cheek, but dont dismiss it out of hand.

    klumpy
    Member

    klumpy has the spiritual side of MMA in the bag.
    im sure the yoga comment was part tongue in cheek, but dont dismiss it out of hand.

    Well, the OP wants:

    * Regular classes so that I force myself to get out of the office in the evenings and to help keep my workload and work/life balance under control
    * Better fitness and flexibility with all of the benefits that will hopefully bring to the bike
    * Definitely keen on exploring the mental aspect in terms of better focus/confidence etc

    …with no mention of a desire to learn to fight. If you want overt spirituality then yoga or a shouty pyjama art might be the thing.

    That said a fighty club where you train hard at a genuinely applicable skillset, among friends aiming to get better together, where you all risk hurt but don’t try to hurt (too much), that can be a very worthwhile head space to be in.

    That said a fighty club where you train hard at a genuinely applicable skillset, among friends aiming to get better together, where you all risk hurt but don’t try to hurt (too much), that can be a very worthwhile head space to be in.

    This +100

    Some of the guys from my ‘home’ club are still some of my strongest and best friends, something about training and fighting together brings you closer. When we are ‘messing around some of the things we do to each other would make most people cringe

    McHamish
    Member

    Where in London are you based?

    I’ve been to a few ‘MMA’ gyms in and around London, not for a few years though.

    If you’re based in Canary Wharf, Diesel Gym in Limehouse is a great place and the last place I trained. The owner Cliff Bura is a nice guy and good teacher…the place has a good atmosphere (or at least did when I went there). The gym is a Muay Thai gym at it’s core, but they also cross train in BJJ, wrestling and boxing. The only issue I had was that there wasn’t enough sparring – you only sparred in certain classes and usually only if you were part of the fight team. The ‘sparring’ class is Sunday mornings, which is difficult to get to if you don’t live in London.

    Years ago I used to go to muay thai and a bit of boxing at London Fight Factory when they were based in Brick Lane. This is a BJJ gym at it’s core but had a good muay thai and boxing class. The gym owner Luiz Ribeiro used to be a boxer and is now a BJJ black belt. This is another friendly gym with a good atmosphere…they’ve since moved to Old Street I think…I haven’t been to their new gym.

    I went to London Shootfighters many years ago but only half a dozen times…it was a little difficult for me to get to. I can’t really comment on this gym really, but they have successful fighters so must be doing something right.

    If you’re interested in more traditional martial arts, Bob Breen’s Academy is good – this is based in Hoxton Square. This is a jeet kune do school, so the original mixed martial art I suppose. They also do eskrima is you’re interested in whacking people with sticks. This school has a structured syllabus and you’ll focus a lot more on the details of the technique of punching/kicking than you would in an MMA gym.

    If you want to go more traditional you could try Kamon Wing Chun – there are various schools all over the place. I haven’t been to a wing chun class for a long time – I enjoyed hitting pads and sparring and you don’t get to do a lot of that with wing chun.

    Based on what you’ve said you’re after I’d suggest trying muay thai…I enjoy it more than other martial arts I’ve done in the past.

    RaveyDavey
    Member

    One point worth considering as well is, the proximity of another male during the ground work. It might seem a trivial point but some guys can’t hack it in the close work. Me? I love it 🙂

    marczr
    Member

    Don’t think it’s been mentioned yet, but if you want to train a ‘practical’ martial art then it’s worth checking out the Krav Maga classes in your area.
    Like MMA there are quite a few dodgy schools around, so check them out first and get some local recommendations.
    IMO Krav is the dogs nuts for fitness / self defence / fun. Want more finesse, try Wing Chun or any of the Indoneasian / Filipino arts or Brazilian Jiu – Jitsu for more wrestling.

    I’d suggest giving a few single martial arts a try. Start with tae kwon do and see how you get on.

    birdo
    Member

    One thing to remember with mma is that it is basically a sport. So you train to get better at the fight aspect as a sport. So beating the other person in the ring/ cage. As it’s a sport however there are rules so if it self defense you’re after there are more effective styles, krav magra for example. As far as the mental / spiritual side there is some. The confidence , stress relief, adrenalin boosts and ability to keep a clear head when put under pressure are all mental gains . I run a kung fu school and also teach mma and kickboxing and would say that any martial art training will help with your biking due to the cv gains and also improving your core strenght. Which ever class you go to ask questions you’ll soon tell by the answers if it’s a good school or not. Anyone who answers a question with because I say so is not a good teacher. Good luck with finding the right school.

    marczr
    Member

    Just be aware that Tae Kwan Do is a sport, it has been sanitised and made safe for kids to spar, if you are at all interested in self defence then TKD should be pretty far down the list.

    RaveyDavey
    Member

    Tae kwon do is now seen more as a sport than its pure martial arts roots, especially under the TAGB unless you revel in rules regulations and red tape I’d give it a swerve

    I’d try a single MA before jumping in to MMA. Unless you wanted to progress it on to fighting at any sort of level I wouldn’t see where it could be more worthwhile? Most (IME) people that go to MMA gyms do so normally to fight. Not for many other reasons. Whereas most people that train in MA normally do so for fitness, clearing their heads, having something outside of work and home that they can involve themselves in..
    Muay Thai if you want to stand and trade blows with someone.
    Judo, BJJ, etc if you want to throw people about and try to strangle them.
    Just my tuppence worth.

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