This article originally appeared on Evolve MMA.
You will always find different types of people from all walks of life in an MMA gym. This is what makes MMA gyms such a melting pot. The social interactions are part of the fun, and one of the reasons why working out in a gym is so enjoyable.
However, despite all of this diversity, there are certain people that you will always find at any gym, regardless of whether you’re in an MMA gym in Singapore or an MMA gym in Sweden. The following are some of the types of people you can expect to find in any MMA gym:
1) The ‘changed’ member
Where you’ll find him: Next to the instructor.
What a difference a year can make! You probably remember the first time this member came to your class. He/she knew nothing about martial arts and was extremely lethargic and unsure during his/her first few classes. He/she is the poster child of how much of a transformation a person can make if they are dedicated to martial arts training. The changed member has evolved into one of the most determined members, and he/she is always asking the instructor for tips on how to improve techniques. This person’s transformation is exemplary, and he/she has surpassed most of his/her peers.
Mantra: Yes, we can!
2) The health enthusiast
Where you’ll find him: At the juice bar.
This member is here to remind you that getting better at any level involves more than just practicing for hours at the gym. This is because he/she knows that you are what you eat. He/she is disciplined in the gym and in the kitchen, and he/she always tries to eat clean and healthy foods. This is the training partner you should approach if you have any questions about macros and essential nutrients. He/she has the recipes for all the healthy vegetable and fruit smoothies, and he/she always knows where to find the best organic food products. He/she is not a fan of smoking or drinking, and would probably look at you with a sneer if you invite him/her to go out for French fries or pizza.
Mantra: Garbage in, garbage out.
3) The tenant
Where you’ll find him: Always in the MMA gym.
This member is always in the gym, whether he/she has a class or not. You will find him/her lurking in the corridors or the locker rooms. He/she trains in as many classes as possible and spends most of his/her time in the gym. He/she probably has a dedicated locker in the gym where he/she keeps two or three extra towels as well as a few essentials. Everyone knows him/her by name, and a few people even think he owns the place.
Mantra: Home is where the heart is.
4) The competitor
Where you’ll find him: Practicing after class.
This member stays behind to practice his/her techniques after the rest of the class has gone home. He/she takes classes very seriously and enjoys sparring with other members in order to improve his/her skills. He/she has dreams of one day making it as a professional and perhaps winning one or two medals.
Mantra: In it to win it.
5) The mayor
Where you’ll find him: Everywhere!
This is a very social member who talks to everyone in the class. You’ll find him/her chatting with the instructors or showing newbies around the gym. He always introduces himself to new faces and is willing to help them learn the ropes. For this member, the MMA gym is a place to exercise and socialize.
Mantra: High five!
6) The BJJ Junkie
Where you’ll find him: In every BJJ class.
This member takes his love for the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to a whole new level. He/she has subscribed to all the popular BJJ YouTube channels and has saved more videos than he/she can watch. He/she is in love with the whole lifestyle and has no problem spending money on acai and coconut water. He/she even has a pet named ‘Gracie’ or ‘Kimura’. This member spends every waking moment learning new BJJ sweeps and submission, and he/she probably does a bit of hip escaping in his/her sleep. The BJJ junkie is always looking for someone to drill these new techniques with, making him the best partner in the BJJ class.
Mantra: In BJJ, you either win or you learn.
7) The self-proclaimed assistant
Where you’ll find him: Walking around the gym
This member has been around for quite some time, and he/she knows most of the moves. He/she is very close to the coach. He/she spends lots of time strolling around the gym correcting people’s imperfections. He/she has made himself/herself an assistant coach, and he/she is always correcting other people’s technique.
Nothing makes the self-proclaimed assistant happier than someone asking for his/her expertise.
Mantra: Are you sure that’s how you do that?
8) The weekend warrior
Where you’ll find him: Only attends on weekends.
This is a busy member who also wants to learn martial arts. He/she never attends any classes on weekdays because he/she is always at work. However, he/she spends most of his/her weekend at the MMA gym. He/she is probably a doctor or an accountant. If you met him/her on the streets, you’d never guess that he/she knows MMA. Don’t let the fancy suit and eyeglasses fool you. Remember, Clark Kent was Superman!
Mantra: There’s a time for everything
MMA gyms have a lot of diversity as they welcome people from all backgrounds and walks of life. In the gym, you’ll find everyone from the up-and-coming actor to the middle-aged lawyer. The different personalities make the dojo a fun and entertaining place to be.
Are you one of the eight types mentioned above?