With the popularity of MMA ever increasing, is it only natural that a ever growing number of people want to become part of this phenomenon. Their goals may be for fitness, self defense or maybe even to compete in the future.
Thus the million dollar question. How do I choose a school?! MMA schools are popping up left and right claiming to offer the best in instruction. Unlike traditional martial arts schools there is no ranking system, (5th dan etc) making it difficult to determine the experience of their instructors.Therefore, to ensure that you are getting the best bang for your buck it is up to you to do your research. Look up the credentials of the school you are interested in. Who did the instructors learn under? Do they have any professional experience? What are the forums online saying? Use the internet to your advantage to research your school and ensure that your instructors are qualified to teach and have not learned their techniques purely from howto videos.
The next best thing, is to call the school and book a class. Every martial arts school should offer a free class. This is where you will get a feel for the school and realize if this school suits your needs. While visiting the school make note of certain things. For instance, what is the training floor like, do they have a ring or cage? Do they offer a wide array of heavy bags and training equipment?
Personally, when I walked in Lanna MMA I noticed a multitude of different leather heavy bags, a full size ring, a large matted floor, and a wide array of kick pads and shields, all in excellent shape.
Another thing to look at is the School’s schedule. It is my opinion that a MMA school should have more than just an MMA class. There should be classes in Muay Thai or kickboxing, and or traditional boxing, as well as BJJ and or wrestling. Gi or No Gi, I prefer having both types of BJJ. I would also look at conditioning classes, even yoga, as the days of the out of shape MMA competitor are long and gone. At Lanna MMA we offer all these classes from 9am to 9pm and 6 days a week.
The last thing is cleanliness, this I can’t stress enough. Especially with BJJ, and even with Muay Thai, as you’re barefoot, an unclean facility can lead to rashes, fungus, bacterial infections, and all sorts of annoyances. At Lanna MMA we clean our facility every night and even throughout the day, this includes mopping all areas including the mats and the ring. Make sure to ask the school you are interested in how often they clean the facility and ensure all floors, rings and cages are mopped every day.
I hope this information was useful, and be sure to check out my posts every Tuesday as I hope to make this an ongoing occurrence.
Marketing Coordinator and Martial Artist