As the sport of MMA continues to grow, if you are an athletic young person, or even if you are towards the end of your athletic prime but just want to test yourself, you may ask yourself – How to become an MMA Fighter?
There is no straightforward answer here, because many fighters have had very different journeys to becoming a successful MMA fighter. It may seem like a complex question if you think too deeply about it, but in reality there are just some basic things you need to stick to if you want to be a successful MMA fighter in 2018.
This post will help to give you guidance to start a successful MMA career, but remember there si no set formula in this industry and of course you must have natural talent to make it career worth remembering.
If we look at the likes of: Jon Jones, GSP, Conor McGregor, among others while their paths to UFC greatness was every different from each other, all of them shared a few things outside of their natural athleticism and talent for Martial Arts – they found a team and a manger they can trust.
Can I trust this team and do they care?
It is really the cornerstone, have you ever heard the phrase iron sharpness iron? Well it is never truer in any sport then MMA. If you have training partners that are sub par in skill level and don’t really care about your development, then inevitably you will be turned into a lazy fighter with sub par skills no matter how naturally gifted you are.
But if you are training with elite level fighters and who really care about the development of your skills and MMA career, then you will inevitably become a diligent, cerebral fighter, with elite skills and who is passionate to make it to the top.
I have seen many fighters in my time completely waste their natural talent just from training at sub-par teams – I don’t want to make a list of fighters who have done this, but one of the most famous would be Ronda Rousey I would say.
She got all the way to the top of the MMA game mainly of her own natural athleticism and Judo skill set – her team was not known for producing high level fighters for MMA consistently and how much some of her trainers really cared about Ronda has also always been questionable.
But then if you look at a guy like Conor McGregor you can clearly see that he has a team in SBG Ireland who truly care about him from the start of his career all the way through to the big shows and have generally helped him take his career to unbelievable heights.
A good team will help you to not rush your development, they will make sure you get plenty of amateur experience before going pro and fighting in the big shows, which enables you to develop at the right pace.
Keep it simple – highly skilled training partners who care about you – make sure you find this, no matter how far you have to travel – you want a team that will give their all to make you the best possible fighter, a team who will be in your corner inside/outside the cage and who will back you up no matter the situation – a team you can trust.
Can I trust this manager and do they care?
Stick to a winning formula and one part of a winning formula for an MMA fighter nowadays, is having the right kind of management that actually really cares about you and who you can trust.
Some people say there is no need for MMA mangers, or it should always be someone from your fight team – the truth is though that there’s a lot of fighters who have had their careers made or broken through either having great management or poor management.
Just look at a fighter like Khabib Nurmagomedov, say what you want about his heritage or who funds him, but his manager Ali Abdel-Azziz has done a great job in making sure Khabib gets the best opportunities, through his well known determined bargaining.
When you know your manager will always try to get you the best fights, the most money and will never try any dirty underhanded tricks to get an extra piece of the pie without asking – then you know you have a good manager.
A great manager can also be like a mentor figure too. But then at the same time if you look at fighters like – Matt Mitrione, Brandon Vera and Alistair Overeem, then its clear these fighters have had their careers sabotaged by poor management at various points.
Don’t be the average all rounder – shoot for the stars!
Last but certainly not least, it is still so important just as with the old days of MMA – in 2018 to be a continually winning fighter, you do need to be well rounded, but then be a specialist in at least one area.
The sport of MMA is flooded with far too many fighters that know a 1000 different techniques, but cannot ever truly endanger and finish opponents consistently. Also when you are good everywhere but elite nowhere, psychologically you will think you are “good everywhere” but then in this mindset all you do i set yourself up to get dominated by a specialist in one area, so invariably you will start racking up just as many losses as victories.
Just like the first UFC event right up the the most most recent UFC: 229, it has always been a huge determining factor in who wins a fight – styles make fights they say, and it is 9 times out of 10 the specialist who will use his mastery of at least one art to completely dominate their opponents.
This remind me of a famous Bruce Lee quote: “I fear not the man who has practised 10,000 strikes once, I fear the man who has practised 1 strike 10,000 times”.
So the message here, is be solid everywhere, serviceable cardio, toughness, striking, grappling and wrestling, but be a specialist in one technique, one form that you can always revert to in order to take over and dominate a fight.
Hope you enjoyed today’s post, so if you did then leave a comment or question below – don’t forget to like, share, subscribe and as always stay tuned for more form the world of MMA right here at the MMAGateway!