Precision Fighter Garret Volpe made it to the front cover of the Poughkeepsie Journal this Friday. If you met Garret Volpe today, you would have no idea that two years ago he was forced to face his own mortality. As a committed athlete who trains tirelessly and is constantly seeking new information on nutrition and fitness, it was a complete shock for him to find out that he was facing heart failure. After Volpe was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy, and beneath his muscular frame his heart was functioning at approximately 40% of normal rate. Those who know Garrett would attest that he is not only in good shape, but a living embodiment of peak physical fitness. His family, friends, coaches and teammates were in dismay and disbelief, but none more than Garrett himself. He has dedicated years of his life to training martial arts, in hopes of pursuing his long-time dream of fighting in a mixed martial arts bout. This dream is what kept him in positive spirits, despite being told that he may need a heart transplant if he was going to survive. Check out his article in the Poughkeepsie Journal to learn more about Garrets struggle to make it from heart failure to getting his hand raised. If you live in Poughkeepsie or the Hudson Valley and would like to train MMA, give Precision Boxing and Mixed Martial Arts a call at (845)392-8495.
No one ever called Muay Thai the gentle way. The world is not perfect and at some point we all get hurt. When you train with an injury it is important to train intelligently. Many students exacerbate the injury repeatedly by doing the same technique that caused the injury in the first place.
Muay Thai is awesome and everyone wants to get back to training as soon as possible. However while injured you need to modify your training so that you are able to recover to 100%. This is especially difficult for people to adhere to when they have been training for an upcoming fight. Instead of letting the injury heal people will make it worse and potentially have to pull out of the fight.
Always alert your coach to any injuries you may have. It’s important that you both be on the same page. This will allow your coach to help modify your training so you don’t aggravate your injury. Your coach can also make sure you are working with the more controlled and experienced students to help keep you safe.
Do not spar if you have sustained a concussion. Take time off and see your doctor right away. Don’t try to be a tough guy and fight through the pain. Head trauma is serious and additional damage at this point will be much worse.
Do not spar with rib or jaw injuries. Let them heal. Rib injuries can be pretty limiting and you may need to stick with just footwork and shadowboxing until you heal up.
Do no spar if you have cuts on your face. Lacerations stop fights. You see it all the time, guys with lots of scar tissue in their face cut more easily. Excessive scarring around the eyes can develop into a weakness for fighters. Get the cuts cleaned out and properly covered to allow healing with minimal scarring.
For minor hand injuries often times you can adjust your wrapping style. I recommend having long hand wraps. 190 inches and up. With long wraps you can reinforce the knuckles, the wrist or the thumb depending on what is bothering you. another option is to double up and use two hand wraps on the same hand. Some people will put a pad or a sponge over their knuckles before putting on the hand wrap to provide additional protection.
For more serious hand injuries you need to stop punching things! This simple concept is difficult for many people to accept. For pad work you can replace all punches on that side with elbows. For sparing try sparing with only kicks or work from within the clinch.
If you get a bone bruise on your lower shin stop kicking with that leg until you heal up. With a bone bruise on the upper shin you may still be able to kick pads and bags. Listen to your body! When working combinations replace kicks from the injured side with knees or teeps. You could injure your leg in a fight and be unable to throw kicks, so training this way will give you alternative game plans your can fall back on.
One of my favorite sparring games is to use punching and round knees. This drill helps you develop new and better knee strike set ups. You can focus on your punch technique and develop a dirty boxing game. If your legs are up to it work on your clinch fighting.
Do not spar with a weapon until you can throw it full power on a bag or pad. Many times I have seen fighters test out a hurt hand or shin by tapping a heavy bag with it. They hit at half power (or less) and decide they are now fit to spar. Even though you are only sparring things will be chaotic. People almost always end up re-injuring themselves because they didn’t want to wait an extra week to heal up.
Being injured is also a great time to work on the opposite stance. Practice all the techniques you can from your home stance, and then switch it up and learn to attack from the other side. This is a good way to follow along with a class if the combinations/techniques you’re working on are on your injured side. It will help keep things from getting to boring.
So if you get hurt be smart and let your body heal. However most of the time you will be able to continue training in some capacity. Take this time to work on your weaknesses and you will be a better overall martial artist when you’re feeling one hundred percent again.
live near Poughkeepsie, NY and want to be a fighter, or just train like one check out Precision Boxing & MMA FREE for 30 Days call 845-392-8495 or visit http://poughkeepsiemuaythai.com/
How Martial Arts Can Help Fight Childhood Obesity
In the past 30 years, the rate of childhood obesity has doubled. As of 2012, more than one third of children and adolescents are overweight or obese. Preventing childhood obesity also prevents diseases like type two diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and more. Unhealthy habits often begin in youth, so it is important that your child is on the right track. The main areas of concern with children are poor eating patterns and lack of physical activity.
Unfortunately, with all this technology around, it’s hard for children to stay off of their iPads or iPhones. That’s why it is a great idea to invest in Martial Arts classes for your child. It gives your child motivation to want to be physically active while doing a fun activity that they enjoy. During a Martial Arts class, your child can burn calories while becoming more fit and comfortable with their body. Martial Arts classes are an easy access to being regularly physically active and discovering a liking to health and fitness.
Martial arts training contributes to the loss of excess fat and the bulding of muscle. Not only will your child know how to defend themselves, they obtain a new and different skill while dropping excess weight.
Whether your child is already healthy, could be healthier, or not healthy at all, Martial Arts would benefit any type of child.
Interested in making your child healthy with the Martial Arts Lifestyle? Contact Precision MMA at lagrangemartialarts.com or call us at 845-392-8495!
There are so many reasons for women to start MMA training. Unfortunately, women are often the primary victims in abductions, rapes, or domestic abuse. Women ages 18-36 are at the greatest risk of being victims of domestic violence. Situations like these could change your life drastically. When you train MMA, you become more confident in knowing that you’ve done something to be able to lessen the chances of any of those things happening to you. With self- defense knowledge women can be empowered to be survivors and not victims. Once you know how to defend yourself against situations like this, the way you carry yourself changes too. Self-defense and self-confidence go hand in hand in this particular circumstance and it benefits you throughout your life.
Not only will you have the skills to defend yourself in dangerous situations, but MMA is a lot more fun than just the regular routine at the gym. It’s always something new, so you’ll never get caught doing the same thing every day. Many people struggle with their weight and body image. But they also struggle with getting to the gym and doing something about it. The thought of the gym irks a lot of people. But when you do something like MMA, you’re doing an activity that’s enjoyable and not just solely for losing weight. When you train, you will never feel un-motivated or dissatisfied because the experience is exciting and something to look forward to doing.
MMA also gives you the chance to get involved, interact, and socialize with other people. It teaches you to work and cooperate with others and that skill can be applied to your job, and just every- day life.
Here what a female student at Precision has to say about the classes:
“I then found precision and went in to test the waters. I’m glad I did! I have tackled many of my fears and have really taken a liking to the jujitsu classes. I am so pleased with the instructors, and the atmosphere. It’s a great learning environment and for people like me it has brought me out of my shell and helped me get back into exercise and health. I recommend precision to anyone and everyone. It pushes your limits without breaking your body, it keeps you desiring to learn more, and gives you focus that is unwavering” – Hope Ackerly
Get started today with a 30 Day FREE Trial visit http://www.poughkeepsiemixedmartialarts.com or call 845-392-8495
Check out the new Precision MMA commercial!
In many ways training martial arts is easier today than ever before. The popularity of MMA competition has made arts such as Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and Muay Thai more accessible to the public. The internet has allowed techniques to travel across the world in a matter of seconds. Schools such as Precision MMA in LaGrange, NY now have experts in striking and grappling under the same roof in large world class facilities. When I began training in the 90’s BJJ and muay thai were unknown. There were very few training partners to work with and the gyms were small “hole in the wall” facilities. Instructional videos were few and far between. Gyms would not mix their styles so I would have to travel to one gym for boxing, another for jiu-jitsu, another for muay thai and still another for wrestling.
Martial arts today is almost a completely different world in 2014. However, one thing has remained constant – the essential steps for success. Half my life has been dedicated to training and in that time I have narrowed the path to greatness down to a three step recipe.
#1 Make martial arts a priority in your life
Seems simple enough, but this is the most neglected step in the success formula. If you want to become great at something it has to become a lifestyle. Our priorities are things that hold a strong place in our daily routines. They are the things that must get done. Other things must work around our priorities. This can come up in many ways in our daily life. For example, if you want to add a “movie night” to your weekly routine make sure it’s not during your class time. If you have a test to study for wake up earlier or go to bed later, but do not allow it to replace your mat time. If there is a time draining activity like playing video games or watching reality TV that makes getting to class difficult eliminate it. Treat your training time like a no-excuse, must attend obligation and success will be difficult to avoid. Additionally, make sure your lifestyle supports your martial arts training. This may mean prioritizing rest so that you can properly recover from hard sessions or improving your diet so you have the fuel to make it through long sessions.
#2 Show up
Their is an old saying that 80% of success is simply showing up. If you are absent from class you’ll never pass the test. People will often tell me how important martial arts is in their life, but actions speak louder than words. The ones who mean are those with the most marks on their attendance card. Additionally, the more your are in class the more your instructor can understand your learning style and physical abilities as well as limitations. A teacher and student that work together on a regular and uninterrupted basis have an understanding that brings out the best in both of them. Your ability to get to class is directly proportional to how much of a priority you’ve made martial arts in your life, in that way the first two steps are forever linked.
#3 Training the right way
Sometimes the biggest determinant of success is not simply the hours you put in, but what you put into the hours. When it’s time to train turn your cell phone off, focus your mind and commit yourself wholly to improving. Drill with a purpose, ask questions when confused, follow your coaches advice, step outside your comfort zone and challenge yourself. There are some people with 10 years of experience and then others with one year repeated ten times. The difference is the amount of effort that is put forth in expanding one’s abilities. If you struggle with your guard begin rolling from your back, if your head movement is lacking make yourself do rounds of pure defense – don’t avoid your pitfalls, but rather face them head on.
This is the formula used by myself and many others to find success inside the four walls at Precision MMA. The nice part of this recipe is that it doesn’t rely on anything other than hard work and dedication abilities which are naturally within the grasp of all. Choose to be successful!
Looking to train mixed martial arts in LaGrange, NY? Check out Precision MMA Free for 30 Days call 845-392-845 or visit http://www.poughkeepsiemixedmartialarts.com
Author Brian McLaughlin is the head coach at Precision MMA in LaGrange, NY. He is a Tampa Gracie black belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu as well as a former professional mixed martial artist with over 15 years of training.
Dutchess County MMA Fighter Brian McLaughlin, owner and head instructor at Precision MMA in LaGrange, NY gives advice on using martial arts as a tool for growth inside the ring and out.
Precision MMA is currently offering a FREE 30 Day trial to Dutchess County residents call 845-392-8495 or visit www.poughkeepsiemixedmartialarts.com to get started
In MMA the saying “Whatever doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger” is a very popular idiom. The idea is that the path to personal growth and development is often achieved through a series of unfavorable crucibles. In 2007 I traveled far from Dutchess County to Atlantic City where I entered the Ring of Combat Beasts of the Northeast MMA Tournament. After winning the initial bouts I found myself in the tournament finals. At one point I came across a fellow fighter, Charlie Brenneman, who was a finalist in the weight class above me. We were both waiting for the elevator and Charlie decided to engage me in friendly conversation. “Don’t you just love this?” he asked me. “No! I hate fighting, I can’t wait until this is over” I replied. Charlie gave me a confused sideways look and decided against engaging me in further conversation. While not making many friends, I was being brutally honest.
Part of me hates fighting. Whenever I have an MMA match on the horizon everyday is filled with a combination of doubt, fear, anxiety and nervousness. Prior to my first fight my coach had trouble wrapping my hands because they wouldn’t stop shaking. Many people are perplexed when they discover my feelings towards fighting. Everyone simply assumes that I enjoy fighting and I’m right at home under the bright lights of competition. When I’m standing in front of a sold out MMA crowd in Atlantic City I really wish I was at home in Dutchess County. Upon discovering the truth I’m always asked why I continue to fight if it makes me so uncomfortable. The reason is that once I went through a professional fight everything else in my life was easy by comparison.
I started MMA training at 15 years old. Before I began training MMA, nervousness and anxiety took over nearly every aspect of my life. When I met people for the first time I couldn’t look them in the eye. I used to walk with my head down. I was probably the least confident teenager in all of Dutchess County. If I had to speak in front of a group my voice would quiver and I would start sweating profusely. For my first couple of months sparring terrified me, but it allowed me to face my fears in a controlled and supportive environment. Eventually getting choked, thrown and pinned by someone twice my size wasn’t so frightening. By putting myself regularly in uncomfortable situations I began to relax and my anxiety began to disappear and be replaced with a quiet confidence. The self-assurance and composure I developed through regular training was incredible, but I knew it was the result of facing a real fear and conquering it.
In my case, I decided to fight MMA specifically because it terrified me. At the time no one else in Dutchess County had ever fought MMA, I was in many ways entering uncharted territory. Once I had overcome the fear of confronting a professional fighter who was being paid to hurt me I knew I could handle anything. College exams, public speaking, even opening a business were nothing compared to being locked in a cage with someone being paid to hurt you. Anytime I feel anxiety creeping in from a situation I ask myself “is this worse that any fight you’ve been in?”. Now very few things cause me to doubt myself or truly frighten me. By placing myself in stressful situations and confronting my fears and doubts I gained a confidence and self reliance I never thought I’d posses. I truly think a martial artist should at times embrace truly stressful situations or even intentionally create them. I even preach this in my kid classes. When one of my young students hurts themselves they don’t start crying and looking for sympathy, they work through it (Pit bulls not Poodles is our saying). MMA fighting is an extreme example and I’m not trying to get everyone in Dutchess County to climb into a cage. However, I believe everyone should think of ways to challenge them self in training and at times be genuinely uncomfortable. Whether it’s pushing a little harder when you’re completely exhausted or rolling with someone much bigger and stronger than you – when you survive the anxiety you’ll walk away a stronger, prouder person.