Starting Out in Martial Arts...

If you are completely new to martial arts, you may find this article helpful.

Starting anything new is always a little bit of a nerve wracking, yet exhilarating experience. If you pause a moment to think about all of the "firsts" in your life, they will probably make you smile - the first time you finally rode a bicycle without training wheels, the first time you started school, the first time you made a best friend, the first time you lost an important game in high school, the first time you fell in love, the first time you succeeded at something, the first day you went to class at university, the first time you started a job...

Starting martial arts is no different. When you look back on this time in your life, you will smile. However, right now, there is always a little curiosity mixed with a sense of adventure and uncertainty. Is it safe? Will I like it? Will I be good at it? Will I belong?

Here are some guidelines to ensuring that you have an enjoyable experience in your first year of martial arts and beyond:

1) Choose the right school. You should try to find a school that fosters the right environment for learning. The culture of a school always starts at the top. If the instructors are friendly and warm, the school will emanate those qualities. Pay attention to every detail. Are the instructors passionate about what they do? Is safety the #1 priority of the school? What are the instructor backgrounds and qualifications? How do they behave as human beings and what are their values? How does the gym look and feel? Does it reflect a sense of pride and professionalism? How do the other students interact with one another as well as with instructors? Does the schedule fit with your own schedule? Is it located in a convenient location? How do you feel when you are at the school? Does it feel safe? In the end, you should trust your instincts. The best school is always the one that "feels right" to you. Be sure to visit a few schools before deciding on one. The most important thing is that you find a safe, fun, and supportive environment. You (and everyone else) will flourish in that type of environment.

2) Try to relax and enjoy the experience. Many beginners often feel very self-conscious. They somehow think that everyone is watching them and how silly they might look. You should learn to forget those feelings and try to focus on being in the moment. Listen to what the instructors tell you and mimic their movements to the best of your ability. Try to find another student who is a little bit more experienced and feel free to ask them plenty of questions. If it is the right school, then everyone will be lending a helping hand because we all were beginners at some point in our lives. Also, you should do your best not to worry about your progress (or lack of progress if that is the case). Martial arts is really a turtle's game. The person who keeps at it patiently will one day find themselves a great martial artist. Slow steady improvement is the best way to build a solid foundation.

3) Follow the rules. Every school will have its own set of rules. You should do your best to follow them since it is for your safety. If everyone follows the rules, then the classes will be safe. The rules are not meant to be annoying. They are meant to create a safe, fun, and supportive environment. Beware of schools without rules or guidelines. Accidents are waiting to happen at those schools.

4) Make sure to have the appropriate attire and equipment. It is for your safety. Also, it helps you to assimilate more quickly and feel like a part of the team.

5) Keep an open mind. Learning martial arts requires an open mind. Open your mind and absorb the lessons like a sponge. Along the same vein, you should question everything that you learn. Understand how and why a technique is useful. Don't just go through the motions. Think about each technique and how it is applied.

6) Stay committed. It usually takes a minimum of 3 months before you start really seeing the rewards. Like anything in life, your rewards in martial arts are directly proportionate to your efforts. If you give it your heart and soul, you will get much more in return. The benefits of martial arts are fitness and good health, weight and fat loss, increased muscle tone, stress reduction, increased confidence and discipline, self-defense, and life long friendships. If you stick with it, you will find yourself watching all of these benefits spill over into the other areas of your life. Invariably, the martial arts are an excellent platform to transform your life.

7) Have FUN! If you are not having fun, then something is wrong. After each class, you should feel completely spent and experience a natural high. You should feel a sense of accomplishment, knowing that you were pushed to your limits and that you learned something new. Over time, this FUN becomes almost an addiction if you stick with it. You will see your transformation physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Your confidence will soar. Your mental fortitude will rise. Your focus will sharpen. You will look good, feel good, and will be ready to conquer the world.

If you would like more information, please feel free to contact Evolve Mixed Martial Arts at (65) 6337 0082. As one of the top Mixed Martial Arts gyms in Asia, Evolve Mixed Martial Arts offers classes in Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Mixed Martial Arts, Street Self Defense, Wrestling, Submission Grappling, the Little Samurai Children's Program, and the Fighters Program.

Train hard. Love the game. Achieve Greatness Within.

Team Evolve