The benefits of martial arts training are endless, but choosing the right discipline to practice can be a tricky task.
With that in mind, Malaysian mixed martial artist Saiful ‘The Vampire’ Merican shares four important steps which can assist you with selecting your first martial art to study.
#1 Pen your goals
Just like planning anything out, write down your goals and what interests you the most.
If that doesn’t work, perhaps jot down a list of questions you would ask yourself before picking up a martial art.
People pick up martial arts for a variety of reasons – whether to lose belly fat, as a form of exercise, a hobby, to meet new friends, or to compete.
We all have different choices, so don’t sweat it.
#2 Do your research
Choosing a particular martial art can be a long process, but the key rule is to not overthink.
With your goals set, based on the previous step, your choices have been narrowed down.
For example, if you prefer to throw strikes and attack, then Muay Thai or karate might sound like the perfect sport for you. If you’re eager to pick up a grappling-based sport, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, sambo, wrestling, or judo should be your pick.
Read up on how demanding different martial arts can be, what are the advantages of each one, and how it could benefit your life.
#3 Find a gym
There are plenty of gyms in Malaysia, so it is important to select the one you are most comfortable at.
Among the factors to consider are location, atmosphere, hygiene, budget, and a safe teaching environment. Visit them, and observe how classes are conducted and the gym’s surroundings.
Remember, you can always say no if you end up stuck with someone who’s forcing you to sign up right away.
If you still cannot decide, ask for a free trial. In fact, that could benefit you in the long run.
#4 Check the instructor’s credibility
Sure, there won’t be any masters degrees hanging on the walls.
However, each martial arts instructor will share their journey with you if they’re a legitimate practitioner. That will often include where their journey began, who they trained under, and their accomplishments.
Another important trait the ONE Championship bantamweight athlete feels a coach should possess is respect. If the coach has the respect of his students and peers, then that speaks volumes of their credibility.