Jason, why did you choose to get into MMA?
I believe Mixed Martial Arts is the most challenging sport in world due to the physical and mental demands that are required to achieve success at the highest level. Mentally, the athlete must deal with the fight-or-flight response, remain calm and collected throughout, and not react with raw emotion otherwise he risks losing focus and technique suffers. The athlete must be in peak physical condition and train both aerobic and anaerobic energy systems.
I enjoy all of the sports I trains in (Muay Thai, BJJ and Wrestling) and creatively combining them to create my own unique style for MMA. I chose MMA because I thoroughly enjoy the rigorous training, the healthy eating, and the equanimity that comes from years of hard training.I feel that a person’s true character is revealed in competition. When a fighter steps into the ring, he is able to show his spirit – strength, courage, determination and will power all shine through.
A fighter is able to show what lies deep within and must keep his composure in times of danger, and one is always in danger when it comes to the sport of MMA! If you slow down in a race, other competitors will pass you; in MMA, if you slow down, you get knocked down. MMA demands that the athlete be in peak physical shape and even more importantly, have a tranquil state of mind.
How did you get into Jiu-Jitsu?
While attending University, I was invited by a friend to try out a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu class. When I witnessed the art first hand, I was in disbelief when I saw a 150-pound man defeat someone twice his size.
As I began to understand the art of Jiu-Jitsu, I realized that by applying proper technique, a smaller opponent can use leverage to defeat a much larger opponent. I rely heavily on my Jiu-Jitsu skills in MMA competitions and I believe that it is the most effective art to learn for self defense purposes.
Why did you choose to study Muay Thai over other martial arts?
I chose to study Muay Thai, “The Art of 8 Limbs”, because of the dynamic range of weapons available which include the hands, feet, knees, and elbows. While boxing limits striking with the hands only, Muay Thai has a plethora of weapons to choose from. Muay Thai fighters are allowed to attack the legs of an opponent and there is far less head trauma compared to boxing which limits strikes to above the waist only.
There is a greater level of freedom in Muay Thai compared to other striking arts which place restrictions upon where you may attack as well as the body part you are allowed to attack with. I feel that Muay Thai allows me to be more creative and the lack of striking restrictions gives me the ability to fully express myself.