What makes good MMA instructor

What Makes MMA Instructor Good? (6 Things)

There can be many things that make a great MMA instructor but here are some of the most important ones.

Character is also a huge factor. What kind of person your instructor is can make a big difference, whether you like to continue practicing in that gym or not.

I have had some unpleasant experiences in my martial arts journey that almost made me quit for good. I also have had some great instructors that knew what they were doing. Let’s get started with the first one.

1. Character

As I already mentioned, character plays a big role, no matter what you are practicing. If your boss at work is an awful person to be around, the working days will be miserable.

The same applies to MMA and other hobbies. If your instructor is not a nice person at all, not understanding, and simply a handful to be around, that will not be a pleasant experience.

No matter how much you like MMA, a bad instructor can force you to quit and become unmotivated to continue.

The same applies the other way around. A great instructor can motivate you and get you to come to the class, simply due to their amazing personality.

Even though skills and experience are also really important, the personality of the instructor really does matter a lot. Here are some other things to look out for, when looking for the best MMA gym for your needs.

2. Experience

Experience and credibility are other big factors when it comes to MMA.

Since MMA does not have belt colors to show how experienced someone is, competition merits and other trophies are really important.

Whether your instructor has experience from MMA competitions can make a huge difference, when it comes to teaching others.

I for example have not competed in an MMA tournament. Therefore, I don’t think I would qualify to teach someone to attend one.

If I wanted to practice MMA to compete, I would look out for someone who has actually done it. The experience they have can have a big difference in their teaching style. They know the small factors, tips, and tricks to what to do or not to do before a fight.

3. Patience

Patience plays a huge role, especially when it comes to teaching brand-new MMA practitioners.

Not everybody is a professional when they are born, at least I was not. Learning a new hobby such as MMA will take a long time to get a grip on, especially if you are out of shape.

It takes a lot of repetition and patience from the instructor to keep their head cool when someone struggles to make a simple choke after tens of lessons.

That is what it takes to be a great instructor. To give feedback and correct new fighters when they struggle.

4. Clear demonstrations

The way the instructor demonstrated and shows new techniques can also make a huge difference.

They should make sure everybody can see what they are doing from different angles. It comes without saying that if someone does not get a clear view of how to do the technique, it will be a lot more difficult to do it themselves.

A great instructor makes sure everybody can see what they are showing and shows it several times so people can see it from different angles.

This of course depends on how experienced people they are teaching. Taking everybody is a complete beginner, they might need to see it a couple of times before they fully get what you are trying to do.

5. Constructive feedback

This should come without saying, but a good instructor should give you constructive feedback.

Instead of simply saying, “that’s not right, are you even trying?”, pointing out what to do differently and potentially showing if students don’t understand makes the learning environment a lot more pleasant.

This also allows students to learn without the fear of being made fun of by the instructor.

People might not notice a small error in their techniques as well as someone who is watching the sparring. A good instructor will see places for improvement and let the students know in a constructive way.

6. They are inspiring

Someone with a great track record in MMA tournaments and a great character is hard to not look up to.

If the instructor is someone you can look up to and use as an inspiration, they probably fit in the mold of a great instructor.

Instructors are also not all the same. Someone might not like the way of ones teaching, whereas someone else might think they are the best.

Instructors have different ways of teaching, just like students have different ways of learning. If the instructor has a way of teaching that fits the needs of the student, the learning experience will be much faster and more pleasant for everybody.

My experiences with martial arts instructors

Back in the days when I practiced Karate as a child, we had a different instructor for every class.

What I noticed even as a child was that the higher the belt color, the typically the lesson was always better. We had two black belts in my city, and the one who was “running” the place had a teaching style that nobody else could match with.

The lesson flow was unstoppable. It was so smooth and felt well-planned. He had a great way to deal with a bunch of kids who had barely any clue what they were doing.

If an instructor can motivate children to keep on coming to class, I think that is one factor that makes them great instructors.

In my BJJ gym, the instructor changed also in different weeks. It makes a huge difference in who is teaching each time.

In BJJ I didn’t notice such a big difference in the belt color of the teacher, sometimes it’s brown sometimes purple, it is more about the character and personality than the belt color.

Final thoughts

In conclusion, a great MMA instructor is someone who can inspire people to come back to the gym every week.

Giving constructive feedback and showing real expertise in MMA are good ways to make students feel welcome and respect their instructors.

No matter the equipment of the gym, if the instructor is not good, the gym can not be so great either. It is mainly the instructor(s) that make or break an MMA gym.

Read also: Everything you need to know about MMA.

Hopefully this was helpful, have a wonderful day!

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