A common misconception about training in Martial Arts or taking a Martial Arts Class at a School is that you need to want to be a Professional Fighter in order to start training. Competing at any level is not required. You can train Jiu-Jitsu, MMA, or Muay Thai and never ever fight. Most people actually are part of the gym for the fitness and most of all the community. There is no reason that you have to fight professionally in order to be an important part of the gym or a school. You can come in and train, you can do all the things that we do get in shape, plus experience all the benefits of training like a regular fighter and never compete.

Now, if you want to compete, that’s great, lots of guys compete successfully but it definitely isn't required. The majority of my guys don’t compete and never wanted to compete. They come in to train in their respected Martial Art, that they enjoy, be a part of a fitness community, and then go home to their family and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Simply because the minority is doing fighting doesn’t mean that you have to or if you don't you are going to be treated any different then the rest of the fighters in the gym. I think that it is important for the School Owner to compete or at least have competed when they were younger. I think that most of the Good Coaches at one time or another fought at a high level.

It is very difficult to coach say a MMA Fighter if you haven't fought before at that level. I am not talking about a local fight night I am saying fought on a international level. Maybe not the UFC but at least the bigger shows. For BJJ I think you should have fought in the BJJ Worlds or something equivalent. I also think that it is important that the head coach for regular students to have competed at the highest level to insure that they are qualified to be your instructor.

Not only do they know what they are taking about, but they know what it feels like to be in that situation. In my gym everyone can enjoy the benefits of BJJ and MMA, as well as, get in shape and be an integral part of the Team Lutter family. Competing is just one aspect, the other stuff is "you know the life changing part".

Author's Bio: 

Travis Lutter is an American mixed martial artist who won The Ultimate Fighter 4 reality show. His UFC record, not including his exhibition wins on The Ultimate Fighter 4, is 2–4. He is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Carlos Machado. http://travislutter.com