How to Get Started in MMA

MMA is mixed martial arts, a combat sport that’s gained a lot of popularity in recent years. With a lot of athleticism and excitement, it’s no wonder so many people are asking how to get started in MMA. Where does your training journey begin? What process does one take to become an MMA fighter?

Unlike other types of sports, there isn’t a single clear-cut path to get into MMA. In this guide, we’ll share the step-by-step process for getting started. Today, this sport is more accessible than ever before. 


1. Learn About MMA

A lot of people have a general understanding of MMA, but they don’t really know the different disciplines represented. In this type of martial arts, there are 3 main areas of fighting. These are:


  • Stand-up – Both fighters are on their feet and strike with hands, feet, elbows, and knees. 
  • Clinch – Fighters are body-to-body and hold one another in a fighting position. 
  • Ground – When the fighting happens on the ground. 


Within these, MMA includes a variety of martial art disciples blended together. You can expect to learn boxing, kickboxing, karate, muay thai, taekwondo, jiu-jitsu, wrestling, judo, and others. To build a strong foundation, you’ll need experience with all of these martial arts practices to make the most of your training. 

2. Find Local Gyms

Once you’re ready to start your training journey, you’ll need to begin looking for local gyms. This isn’t a sport you can do at a typical gym. You need specialized classes, so you’ll need to look for an MMA gym specifically. 


Each gym will have their own classes at different times. Some focus on a particular martial art, like kickboxing or wrestling. However, look for a gym with a well-rounded schedule. It’s best to experience a variety of wrestling forms from experienced coaches. 


3. Drop in on Classes

Before you sign up, make sure you check out some of the classes in person. These gyms require a bit of commitment, so you want to ensure you’ve found the perfect fit. Dropping in classes is an expected part of this process. You can get a trial period to experience the classes you’re interested in free of charge. 


From there, get a feel for how they teach each type of martial arts. What are the instructor’s teaching styles? What skill level are the classmates? These questions will inform your search for the perfect gym. 

4. Start Slow with Your Training

It’s easy to be so excited when you start with MMA. It’s an intense, exciting sport. You’ll feel ready to throw yourself all-in likely after your first day of training. However, it’s important to start slow. Injuries are very possible with this sport. You don’t want to find yourself out of commission right away. 

Remember that everyone is at this gym to learn more and improve. Don’t let your ego get in the way of a great training session. One of the first things you’ll learn is how to tap-out or submit to avoid injury. Pay close attention to this and don’t be afraid to use it when you need to. Everyone gets better at their own pace, and you’ll only get better if you keep yourself in top shape. 


5. Compete When You’re Ready

Last but not least, start competing. Once you and your coaches feel your ready, it’s time to get in the ring. Taking part in your first amateur fight offers a world of learning experience. This is how you get better, so don’t be afraid to jump in when you’re ready. 

If your plan is to go pro, you’ll want as much fighting experience as you can get. However, take your time with this process. Your safety is important, and you’re also learning as much as you can.


Are You Ready to Start MMA?

If you’re asking “how do I get started with MMA?” this guide is for you. Now you know what steps to take, from learning about the basics of the sport to finding a gym. The time is now to find the perfect place to train. With the rise of this sport’s popularity, MMA gyms are more common than ever before. 

This is a martial art like no other. Training to become an MMA fighter takes a lot of dedication and commitment. If you’re passionate about learning and getting experience, don’t hesitate to get started today. 

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