For the instructors at Precision MMA martial arts is more than a hobby, it is a way of life. Head coach Brian McLaughlin started his training back in 1999 as a sophomore in high school. He began with Brazilian jiu-jitsu as a way to learn self-defense. He quickly became obsessed with jiu-jitsu training twice daily. He started his jiu-jitsu journey under black belt Fernando “Cabeca” Sarmento and Marco Delima. Fernando and Marco later relocated and Brian went on to train with Rob Kahn and Steve Kardian of Thornwood Jiu-jitsu. As he began gaining jiu-jitsu knowledge his desire to become a complete grappler grew and he began training wrestling under Olympian Dan Sanchez and Hudson Valley standouts Eric Amato and Ian Lindars and Judo under Dutch national team member Jerry Fokas. This unique combination of wrestling, judo and Brazilian Jiu-jitsu gives Brian a perspective on the art of grappling that few can rival. Around 2005 Brian met Kyokushin karate black belt, golden gloves veteran and muay thai fighter Shennen Maceo. Brian began training privately with sensei Maceo and sparring with the Tiger Schulmann professional fight team. As he progressed he decided to pursue professional mixed martial arts competition. Brian quickly climbed the ranks, winning his first 5 fights by submission all in the first round. Brian continued his martial arts growth boxing at Demorest boxing where he became a student of one of the top amateur fighters in the region and now famed trainer Derrek Ohlhoff. Derrek refined Brian’s technique and had him sparring at many of the region’s toughest boxing gyms. At this time Brian was invited to compete in the UFC’s tournament “The Ultimate Fighter”. Brian was pitted against tough veteran and fellow jiu-jitsu expert Brandon Gardner. Brian dominated the fight and moved on in the competition. However, a post-fight medical exam revealed that he had suffered a broken nose in the fight and was deemed medically ineligible to continue. With his mixed martial arts career on hold Brian focused on furthering his accomplishments in the sport of grappling and Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. Brian earned submission victories against some of the toughest competitors in the world including Ryan Hall and Wilson Reis – both current starts in the UFC. Brian furthered his mixed martial arts training by joining the AMA Fight Club. Here he trained Jiu-jitsu under famed Renzo Gracie Black Belt Jamey Cruz and muay thai under the legendary Kaensak Sor Ploenjit, widely considered one of the best fighters of all time from muay thai’s golden era. At AMA Brian would have access to some of the best training partners in the world including former UFC champion Frankie Edgar, former WEC champion Jamie Varner and current Bellator world champion Marcoc Galvao. In 2009 Brian would return to MMA competition to fight former BJJ world champion Rene Nazare. The fight was a back and forth battle in which Brian suffered his first professional defeat via split decision. The fight was later voted Northeast Fight of the Year. Unfortunately, following this fight Brian would have many fights fall through at the last moment and the grind of training camps resulted in numerous injuries. Brian would fight twice more before deciding to walk away from the sport and focus his efforts on coaching. In 2004 Brian began teaching while still active as a competitor. Although always a passionate instructor, Brian’s efforts were divided as he was still fighting. Once he retired and put 100% of his efforts into teaching his gym grew exponentially. Today Precision Mixed Martial Arts boasts several hundred students and is home to multiple black belt instructors, as well as golden gloves, muay thai and mixed martial arts champions. There are success stories of everyday men, women and children who have changed their lives through martial arts by learning to defend themselves, gaining discipline and focus, or regaining their health and fitness.
In the realm of professional competition Brian is currently one of the most sought after coaches in the northeast. He has coached and cornered fighters such as Jim and Dan Miller to UFC victories as well as international champions such as King of Pancrase Andy Main. His coaching has brought him across the country and around the world – from Atlantic City and Las Vegas to Tokyo, Japan and Uberlandia, Brazil.
In addition to teaching, Brian continues his martial arts study under jiu-jitsu expert and MMA legend Javier Vazquez as well as his long-time coach Derrick Ohlhoff. To gain the knowledge he currently has Brian had to train at half a dozen different gyms across three different states. The travel would become so hectic he would at times sleep in his car and live out of a suitcase. At one point he was spending over $400 per month for training. He promised himself that one day he would make sure that someone with the same passion as him would not have to go through the same hurdles to become a complete martial artist. He built Precision MMA with that vision in mind. Today Precision is the Hudson Valley’s largest martial arts facility boasting a tremendous 5,000 sq foot facility. Brazilian jiu-jitsu, judo, muay thai, boxing and mixed martial arts can all be learned under one roof from expert coaches. Multiple classes are held 7 days a week and the gym is even open during every holiday. If you want to change your life through martial arts call Precision today at 845-392-8495 or visit http://www.poughkeepsiemixedmartialarts.com