In talking to several of the students, i have seen that some are definitely interested in competing in grappling tournaments and some would rather just fight in mixed martial arts competitions. So I guess I should give some advice on whether or not grappling tournaments are worth your time and money.
First we have to establish a few principles. Mma events are usually of little or no cost to the fighters themselves and draw in more money for the promoters through ticket sales. Most grappling tournaments start at $30 or more just to enter; some as high as $100 for registration. Then there are the travel costs, hotel and food. If you bring family members, it gets more pricy…
MMA is definitely the better option for fighters that cant afford to compete but want to.
But even though we are in a recession / depression, money isn’t the only consideration. One good thing about competing in a grappling tournament as compared to a mixed martial arts match is the amount of matches you can get and the lowered risk of not getting punched or kicked.
I recommend that most of my fighters compete in grappling tournaments especially if they are considering mma competition. This allows them to warm up to a competitve atmosphere, get experience in listening to me coach them from the side and generally in getting used to the tunnelvision and “fog of war” associated with competing for the first few times.
Competition can be stressful and grappling tournaments allow fighters to get the butterflies out before stepping up into the cage and taking on another opponent.
Another point is the takedowns and submission abilities required to win in a grappling tournament. With less offensive weapons, it is sometimes easier for your opponent to defend techniques when they arent “distracted” with getting punched or kicked in the face. This trains you to be more effective with the takedowns you are attempting which in turn makes them more efficient in mixed martial arts.
There are drawbacks and bad habits learned from grappling tournaments though including neglecting the respect of position. Whne your opponent is unable to hit you in the face while in mount, you can grow complacent and not be as defensive as in the cage.
Overall, I see grappling tournaments as an opportunity for fighters and non-fighters to better their grappling and stay competitive as well as learning to stay calm under pressure.
If you would like to compete in a grappling tournament, please contact us about beginning a training routine. Whether you are a beginner or have been training for a while, we will get you ready and keep you in shape for tough competitions.