Are you looking for the best kids martial arts classes Bergen County NJ has to offer? Then you have come to the right place. At Training Grounds Jiu-Jitsu & MMA, we welcome all families to bring their children to learn the subtle but infinitely useful mixed martial arts. [Read more…]
Your martial arts life is good; you are able to make it to your Jiu-Jitsu academy four times a week and get out for your morning jogs 3 times a week; you can now land gogoplatas and arm-bars at will; and it’s been weeks since anyone of your belt rank has tapped you out.
Then suddenly, life happens. The kids are on different little league teams, two co-workers are out on maternity leave, and your 24-hour days feel as if they’ve shrank down to 24 minutes.
What’s going to be the first thing that disappears from your schedule? You guessed it; it’s your MMA/BJJ training. We have all experienced this on some level; whether it is the college student that gets slammed by finals week, or the parents getting slammed with their parental duties, everyone goes through major life disruptions from time to time. Here are few things you can do to keep yourself sharp while out of the academy.
First things first: don’t skip those morning jogs. They will keep your cardiovascular system strong so that when your life calms down, you can continue your martial arts journey without having to get back in shape. Do, however, start adding sprints, push-ups, and pull-ups to your jogging workout. This will cause your heart to work just like it does while live grappling. It will also help keep your strength up during your absence from your training grounds.
Train your brain: think about grappling or striking techniques as much as you can. Review combinations and scrambles in your mind. Visualize all of the techniques as they appear when performed perfectly. See yourself finishing, escaping, and sparring. Scientists have discovered that when they connect electrodes to athletes’ bodies and have the athletes visualize the motions of their sports only in their minds, the exact same muscles activate in the exact same sequence as they do when running the race in real life. Keep this in mind when you’re daydreaming at work or in the car; just thinking about doing Jiu-Jitsu techniques can help you keep your mind sharp.
Watch grappling matches: if you have some quiet time while the kids are sleeping and your wife is watching her favorite reality TV show, you should watch videos. Watching technique demonstrations on YouTube is OK, but what you really need to watch are the techniques in action. Whether it’s Marcelo Garcia, Andre Galvao, the Mendes brothers, or any of the Gracie’s, there’s a ton of competition footage on the web for you to learn from. Be sure to pay attention to the mistakes that people make when going up against these BJJ masters, so that you learn what not to do. Write down any questions you have about those matches, so that you can get a proper answer from your instructor when you get back to class.
These are just a few things that you can do to keep martial arts active in your life while attending class is difficult. You can even do these things while you are training every day. The only thing you don’t want to do is nothing. Even a little bit of exposure to BJJ or MMA is better than none at all.
I hope to see you on the mats soon.
Respect is a word that gets thrown around Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and MMA gyms all the time. You show respect by bowing in to class, by the ever famous slap-pound before a roll and by shaking hands when class is over. One place it tends to be overlooked is during live training. The culprit is usually a junior ranking student. It’s not intentional, and most don’t even realize they do it.
Many black belts don’t enjoy rolling with the white belts, not because they are so high and mighty, but for fear of injury. Yes, an injury to themselves. Many times, someone new to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, will go full speed with no technique causing their hands, feet and other limbs to flail around, hitting the more advanced practitioner in the more “delicate” areas. When these future MMA Champions are put into a submission, they refuse to tap because it doesn’t hurt, but little do they know the black belt is controlling that arm-bar so he/she doesn’t injure them.
Combat sports practitioners are training for combat, if we train at full speed we would spend more time off the mat than on it. So we pull punches and pull submissions. Very new practitioners don’t understand this. Here’s a little tip when someone who is of a higher level or rank hits you or catches you in a submission: When striking and you get hit, give your partner a nod. Do not respond with a 4-punch combo. If this were full-power training, more than likely that punch that, landed square on the chin would hurt you, and be followed up by several more. If you are grappling and find your arm fully extended by the black belt you are training with – just tap. Don’t try to spin out, kick-out or some other low percentage technique. Respect that the more advanced partner could have broken your arm but chose not to, for your safety.
In sports where you strike, it’s a little easier to let the person know that you are scoring by just hitting them a little harder. Most of the time they get the hint. In grappling sports, there are times when there are only millimeters between no pain and injury. This makes the submission game more delicate of a situation.
When you’re a beginner training with someone more advanced than you, respect their technique. If you are caught in an awkward position with your arm fully extended, just tap. If you want to work an escape; simply ask your partner, they’ll gladly work with you and teach you what to do from that position.
The UFC and other MMA promotions have brought new life to the martial arts world and how we look at fitness. MMA, once thought of as a barbaric sport, is now mainstream on Fox alongside football, baseball and soccer. When the UFC had it’s first show, we saw a skinny little Brazilian guy, submitting out men twice his size. Boom! The Brazilian Jiu Jitsu craze began in America.
It’s been years since that first UFC, and fighters now have skill sets far superior than the fighters of the past. Athletic trainers have taken on the role of preparing these athletes for their sport, and nutritionists keep the fighters’ weight in check with modern day nutritional philosophies.
What about the people who don’t want to fight pro? The people who just want to learn how to defend themselves and get in shape. Where do they fit in at these MMA gyms? Let me ask you a question, “Have you ever been to a weightlifting gym?” How many bodybuilders the size of Flex Wheeler, or Arnold Schwarzenegger did you see? More than likely, none, and if you did I’m sure they’d be training and not laughing at your 15-pound-curls. So if you’re nervous that every MMA gym is full of GSPs and Jose Aldos think again.
The local MMA gym is mostly full of people like you. People who saw a UFC at a buddy’s house, fell in love and started to train Mixed Martial Arts. Now that the beer belly is gone, the cholesterol is down, they’re now capable of playing with their children without feeling the need to dial an ambulance.
This doesn’t mean these local MMA gyms’ skill levels are anything shy of what it takes to compete in the UFC. Take Training Grounds in Westwood NJ, for instance. The owner and head instructor, Wil Horneff, may have never fought in the UFC, but has trained with, and trained top level fighters. A very accomplished competitor in the sport of Jiu Jitsu, Professor Wil has the ability to make a Champion out of anyone.
Whether it’s fitness, self-defense or the need to fill a competitive nature, mixed martial arts, has the abillity to do it all for you. The best part is you get to make great friends along the way. So stop in to Training Grounds to receive a free trial class, or call with any questions you may have about training.
See you on the mat!
Hygiene is one of the most important things when it comes to keeping your body safe from infection as a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioner. The practice of good hygiene is also super important for making the training experience as pleasant as possible for your training partners. We can all remember a time either in school, on the airplane or maybe even on the mat when somebody may have skipped the shower that day or worked outside in the hot sun and shot straight to BJJ class after work. I’m sorry to say but in a jiu jitsu school that’s a big NO-NO.
Your skin is the biggest organ you have and you better take care of it. Ringworm and staph infections can put a damper on your training schedule and more importantly, your health. At Training Grounds we use an antimicrobial wash on the mats every day and have multiple showers available for pre or post training. If the gym or academy you train at doesn’t wash the mats after the last class every day/night, it’s in your best interest to speak up. Do it politely and with respect of course. You also have the choice of being the leader at your school and taking it upon yourself to start the habit of cleaning the mats after class instead of hoping/waiting for someone else to do it.
Bergen County NJ is a hot bed for wrestling. Many of the wrestlers also train in MMA at Training Grounds. It’s great how fast these young men pick up the sport of jiu jitsu. It adds a nice mix to the grappling in class. They all know before stepping on to the jiu jitsu mat after a wrestling practice they better wash off that wrestle room funk. Many times the high school mats get rolled up after practice without even being wiped down – let alone cleaned. The last thing a gym needs is an outbreak of MRSA at their facility. So it’s super important to wash your body after practicing in one location before going to another.
In addition to a clean body, having clean breath and trimmed finger/toe nails are also often overlooked pieces of the hygiene puzzle. Below is a quick checklist of items you can keep in your training bag, so you will be ready to go even when you’re on the go
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Hygiene Bag Checklist
Soap / Body wash
Toothbrush and toothpaste (or at the very least gum)
Lysol spray or wipes for your gear
A change of clothes
There are so many stories about children and teens being bullied all over the news. What about the ones doing the bullying? It has been documented time and time again about how great martial arts are for self-defense. The bullying issue needs to be looked at from the other side. Respect, Discipline, Confidence, Courage and humility are all things these children are missing. Lucky for them they’re also things learned in a martial arts program. I was never bullied, nor did I bully, but I guess you could have called me the bully’s bully. As a student of the martial arts I had the courage to stand up for those who didn’t, and more importantly the respect and confidence to try to teach the bullies right from wrong.
Children who train in martial arts learn respect. They either learn the hard way or the easy way. Bullies on the mats of a Jiu Jitsu school don’t stay bullies for too long. They learn what it’s like to be on the other end of the rough play. This is a valuable lesson under the expert supervision of Black Belt Instructors like Wil Horneff, who have years of experience instructing children in the art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. They learn how to respect senior ranking students who are smaller, younger and maybe not as strong as them. People these bullies would look at as a target now get a new sense of respect shown to them.
Let’s speak about confidence. Learning in school is a classroom full of students with all different types of abilities can crush a child’s confidence. This may lead to the child looking to take out his frustration on other children. This is why “nerds” have always been picked on. All children truly want to do well, some just learn at a different pace. Instructors like the ones at The Training Grounds MMA Academy offer a type of authority figure, much like their school teachers. With a “praise – correct – praise” style of teaching the student feels a sense of accomplishment even while being corrected. Exercise can also help children, and teens, focus. This focus carries over to their school day.
Some of the children come from a home where a “father figure” or “authority figure” may be missing. This can put a huge burden on a single parent. An athlete’s coach many times is that figure for the athlete. The instructors at Training Grounds care. All some children need is someone to show them how to do the right thing. As long as someone cares enough to put them in their place they will begin to learn to do the right thing even when no one is watching.
If you feel your child may be the bully and you don’t know how to handle it, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or even stop down to Training Grounds and speak to one of our instructors. We will gladly give you some advice.
About the author
Nick Mirabella owns and operates Buddhasport.com an actions sports website. He’s been training in martial arts for over 20 years and is a student of Training Ground’s BJJ program.
I have been a student of Jiu Jitsu on and off for many years now. Most of my training has been based here in the New Jersey / New York area, and some of it spanned the world while on active duty in the Marine Corps. All and all, I have been a student of martial arts for over 20 years. At this level of experience I have formed many habits, habits that are good for Jiu Jitsu, and habits that are not so good for Jiu Jitsu. Through my journey in BJJ, I have trained at numerous schools. Some schools had legit Gracie Jiu Jitsu instructors while some were just gyms with a blue belt instructing 10 minutes of basic level BJJ techniques followed by two hours of open mat. I’m not saying that one is better than the other, any kind of training is much better than sitting on the couch eating chips watching old UFC fights. It’s up to you, the student of Jiu Jitsu / MMA, to seek out a school, gym or an academy that works best for you.
For me, Training Grounds was like my Jiu Jitsu home; but because of location it made it difficult to make it to class as often as I would have liked. Anyone who lives in the northern NJ area can relate to the traffic on RT 4, RT 17 or the Garden State Parkway. From where I lived, Bergen County can be a nightmare to get to, so the commute to Westwood, Nj could easily turn into two hours. After almost two years away from training, I decided to jump back in – full force. My goal is to receive my Black Belt in Gracie Jiu Jitsu and to train 3-4 times a week. To keep me honest I have started a blog on Buddhasport.com titled “The Jiu Jitsu Journals – My Journey from Blue Belt to Black Belt.” Making my goal public means I have a duty to fans of the site to follow through.
There is a saying I learned in the beginning of my martial arts training – “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” Professor Horneff has always taught techniques in a way that made sense to me and if I didn’t understand he would explain it another way that would get through to me. So why wasn’t I training with him every chance I could? After all, he’s a Gracie Jiu Jitsu black belt with a reputation of being one of the best BJJ instructors in not just Bergen County, but New Jersey. Even though I learn so much every time I’m around him, I wasn’t ready to be a student yet. Then the other day, I was watching an armlock video we had filmed and an inexplicable motivation hit me. Here, I have access to train with one of the best Brazilian Jiu Jitsu instructors on the east coast, not to mention one of the few Ralph Gracie black belts on the east coast, and I’m sitting here spending hours on Facebook and Youtube getting fat.
I shot Professor Wil a text, and as always, he said “Come on down.” The teacher appeared to me because I was ready. Professor Wil had always been there knowing that when I was ready I would know. Maybe you have had a desire to start something, maybe it’s not even related to MMA, BJJ, or Kickboxing; maybe it’s some other skill altogether. You probably know where to go to learn this skill, so what are you waiting for? There is no time like the present. Ask yourself if you’re ready to be a dedicated student. To say you’re going to do something is good but to actually do it is better. The teacher is always there, it’s up to you to make them appear.
Attain Unprecedented Fitness With MMA In Bergen County NJ
MMA in Bergen County NJ has become more of a trend in the last couple of years yet there are many who have not tried to sign up or haven’t had their kids enrolled. Mixed martial arts or MMA in Bergen County NJ is your best solution to remain fit, learn a set of skills and also lead a better life. Whether you consider your kid aged 8 or if you are 25, MMA in Bergen County NJ is for anyone and everyone. Of course, there is this benefit of starting early such as you would have more time in your hand to progress through various levels and belts. Furthermore, you would be able to stretch your career of MMA in Bergen County NJ and even think of pursuing it professionally.
Having said all of that, even if you have crossed your teens or are well into your twenties and thirties, MMA in Bergen County NJ is not one of the best but the best way to remain fit. Health has to be at the forefront and topmost priority at all ages and over the last two decades, obesity has become an epidemic of sorts. More people live unhealthy lives today than ever before. Gyms, normal exercises and workouts are all good but they fail to offer you the results that MMA in Bergen County NJ can offer you. For a starter, more than 90% of people who sign up for gym memberships either stop going after a certain point of time owing to boredom or there are more people not getting results than those sporting the six pack abs. MMA in Bergen County NJ would be a solution that can not only help you to reduce weight but attain true fitness. Fitness is not a bulging bicep or a lean mean body. It has much more significance and unless you have a perfect health, fitness can be a farfetched idea which cannot be transformed into reality.
With MMA in Bergen County NJ, not only shall you be at the best of shape in your entire life but would also gain from the other benefits. MMA is a way of life, it offers you the satisfaction of knowing an art, a skill that you haven’t known and has several stress busting effects. Also, if you face an untoward situation ever in your life, you would know to defend and blow a punch.