The costs of fighting
I have torn an adductor in my right leg twice, pulled my right hamstring, i have a small bone growth and have chipped the bone in my left ankle, sprained it twice, and now have a severely limited range of motion when it comes to dorsiflexion in it. I have cracked a rib, broken my nose, spent a week hardly able to breathe from bruising to my ribcage after a particularly nasty fight, and damaged my rotator cuff. I am on a first name basis with my physio- hell I don't even have to wait in line there any more. This is when I am 21.
I don't get paid a cent for what I do, and I never expect to make any real money. I get very little real respect from people outside of training- fans of the sport don't see you as a real person and most people you meet think fighters are idiots, and will act nice to your face out of fear of you hitting them or something insane like that.
I have lost relationships, friends, girlfriends, money, grades, and health for fighting. If someone cannot accept that I will be busy every afternoon for a month and most saturday mornings, they are out. People who are negative I cast aside and I have lost some close friends because of that.
I have taken the last 3-4 months off training out of pure neccessity in order to establish a career in being a personal trainer, and just started training again today, and boy have I missed it. As someone who has competed in a lot of sports, some at a fairly high level, I can say there is nothing that even comes close to fighting. But at the same time the sacrifice is huge. I would say that it is almost incomprehensible to the vast majority of people.
Out of the people who join my gym every year, I would say out of every 30 people maybe one will actually go on to fight. most of those people will not have a second fight. And even those that do continue and have many, successful fights- few of them will gain any widespread recognition. Almost none of them will be able to make it a career. Very few will garner any real respect from people.
For people who are thinking of getting into fighting (and I mean fighting- boxing, muay thai, mma... not tip tap point sparring ****) Don't kid yourself into believing something is going to happen that won't. the world of sport is brutal, and the world of combat sports even moreso. I do it because I have to do something or I go back to the drinking and the drugs and wasting my life away in a more destructive manner than what I am doing now. Plus, chicks dig scars. You need to have a reason as good or better.
Excellent article. Idle hands are the devils tools, but there are a lot of guys older than you that should know better, living a pipe dream. This should be required reading at any MMA or MT school- not to discourage people, but to know what the reality is.
I enjoyed that. You didnt mention the insane amount of money you have probaly spent on training, equipment, supplements, etc.
Good article. I do it for respect for the people I respect i.e my instructors, training partners and many people on here. I also think that you find out alot about yourself when in hardships, so i feel that through the training and fighting I am learning about my true self and in doing so developing it. I also in a small way feel like I am honouring my ancestors who would have lived in harder times and I think would look at the way many people live now and think of them as whiney, pussies. Also yeah I like how impressed my gf gets.
Seany you're right at them looking at us like pussys, but that doesn't necessarily mean they wouldn't change places with us in a heart beat.
I have a plastic box in the corner of my room with my training gear in it. I don't even want to think about how much that box is worth :/
Originally Posted by Jadonblade
Good article Alex. I'm a year older than you are. I get busted up in sparring, get fatigued at work, and put off important things like graduate school applications. But if I didn't train to fight, I would be fat, and would have low self esteem. Yeah.
On the topic of time wasting- It's really a case of picking your poison. We're all going to waste time doing something, and the fact is, 95% of all people don't spend their entire lives just doing something to help along their careers, just doing something that's good for them, etc, etc. Better this than being a videogame obsessed, out of shape dork, or a shut-in, or a 4chan frequenting idiot.
I thought that was a great article Alex, mostly because how direct and poignant it was. Too many wide-eyed pipe dreamers hoping that a fad or a sport will make them overnight celebrities, when reality is much crueler (especially considering the nature of the contest, attempting to physically harm an opponent before he can disable you). Personally, my ambition is a bit simpler, to have been on the ground floor of a new institution as it's being built up. I think hoping for anything more than that is idealistic at best, delusional at worst.
Still, better this than playing D&D, painting pewter figures in a basement.
this is what keeps me going.
Originally Posted by Alex
I love the article!
It's a very realistic view of, not just the sport, but every single career that presents a possiblity of making it big time: it's brutal and all might get dragged by the wayside.
Few people outside those appreciative of the "way of the warrior" - for lack of a less tacky term I have chosen to use the former, laughable one - it's very hard to understand why we put up with the pain and the grueling regimes.
For me, it's mainly about proving things to myself, to know that I can still function under certain situations. That, and the comraderie that comes with pounding other people and being reciprocately pounded by them with nothing but love for the art as the driving force. No hate, no anger, nothing but the fight in one's mind. Of course, all the other perks work, too! The women especially! (though I am married now and that is something I can no longer benefit from, really hehehe).
Last year, I had the opportunity to meet and speak shortly with Clay Guida (currently fighting with the UFC) and I specifically asked him how long it took him to get up to that level as far as how many fights and such. He said he only had about a handful of pre-UFC fights, that he just happened to get a good manager/agent and that was that. So I guess, on top of all the training and effort, one has to have a head about oneself and manage to sign up with a manager who knows his/her way in the sport. Just like in other entertainment oriented businesses making it big is as much about how hard you practice as it is about who you know.
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