School Picking Overload
So I have just moved to a larger city, for at least the summer drilling season and probably indefinitely. For the first time, I actually have a lot of training options.
Trying to follow my own advice - visit schools and pick one - has left me kind of tied in a bow - I like most of the schools I've visited.
The experience has me thinking quite a bit about my goals as I will probably have to painfully break a tie soon based on who meets my goals best.
I have a very good sport judo/bjj oriented place and a very good MMA oriented place. right now, since I don't know when and where in the city I'll be living when the dust settles, I'm trying not to factor the commute, as the place that's closer now is likely to be farther soon. I feel very comfortable at both places, the MMA place costs a bit more but it's not a major issue. The fact is, I basically have to decide what I'm really interested in and that's hard.
I really do want to look more at grappling competition than ring/polygon MMA. But I don't know about giving up striking. I sort of have a hang up about belting up in judo - because of the time I've sunk into this sport, I get sick of answering the question "are you a black belt" with my long, boring life story of how I'm a flying dutchman that moves from school to school as the wind blows me around the country.
I would really like to hear from some people who go to an "MMA" school who are older (I'm 31) and less focused on actual ring outings. Do you feel it meets your needs? Have you tried other options? Do you question if you belong on the mat there and/or if you're wasting the classes' time?
I'd also like to hear from anyone who has decided for whatever reason to focus on one range or move back to a single range class
Last edited by JohnnyCache; 2/24/2012 4:16pm at .
I go to an MMA school and have taken both sorts of classes. At 36 I go exclusively to BJJ/No-Gi grappling only classes. Black eyes aren't that cool anymore and young kids that want to make a point have dramatically less chance catching me in BJJ than they do in striking.
That said I have no doubts about my striking. I know how to hit and I can hit hard. I also know that because I don't train it all the time my range will be off and I'm better off hitting people with the ground or making them not breathe.
I'm 30, and one of the schools I attend is an MMA school (which I attend without any octagon aspirations.) I know that places vary from coach to coach, but I love it. I like the variety of boxing, MMA catered kickboxing, sub wresting (at which I'm still horrible) and the main instructor's "MMA boot camp".
It's also great to see so many young men and women really getting into these sports. There are a couple girls there in the 19 to 22 range who can really throw their hands, for instance, and everything is really lighthearted. People are always down to roll and I can generally find myself a kickboxing spar when I'm feeling it. I can't imagine you being disappointed if you find a similar place.
If you enjoy the striking then join the MMA school. I've got a number of students in my MMA class that are over 30 and they enjoy the hell out of it. They aren't in it to fight professionally, but they do it for the skills, the friendly competition, and the exercise. All the guys do mitt and bag work and they work their throws and ground work so they're not giving up anything in the way of knowledge.
Good luck in which ever you decide.