Training to fight in MMA…help?

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    I know for this sight, MMA may be shocking…maybe even barbaric to some. I love training in MMA. I love the way it makes me feel and how powerful I feel. In my past I (and on occasions still do) I struggled with depression, eating disorder and low self esteem. Muay Thai more specifically has saved me. It took me out of my comfort zone….which in all honestly I do not get out of often. It forces me out of my comfort zone, it requires me to take a “beating” at times but I am facing that FEAR. I haven’t fought yet but I plan to in the beginning of ’14. I have a lot of fear of fighting. I fear that I will lose, that I will freeze up when I get into the cage and ultimately getting beat in front of a crowd of people. In training, we spar. I recently started sparring with one of my teammates and she is a beast! The first time I sparred with her was really intimidating because she did not take it easy on me. After the first round I wanted to give up…but I did the second round and continued to get beat after the second round I was wiped out. I was honestly on the verge of tears because I was so frustrated and disappointed in myself but I gave it another round. I got beat in the third round but I was so proud of myself for not giving up…the tears of frustration turned into tears of being proud of myself. I waited until I got to my car of course, I couldn’t cry in front of my coach.

    I need some suggestions on how to overcome this fear of not only fighting but getting back in the ring with my sparring partner. I want to face this and I want to do it but I doubt my ability too often.



    What I saw is someone who had three victories in a fight, while her opponent only had one. Anyone can punch and kick another, but it is something quite different and far more remarkable to stand back up. Its in the standing, not the winning, that we find our courage and tenacity. Well done!

    With warmth,


    Thank you very much, Matt.


    Anthony Robbins talks about something called “State Management” .. remembering everything about a time when you were successful.. when you were at your very best…
    He has helped many athletes and performers


    all three victories Matt mentioned .. you can remember something in you in between each bell that motivated you into the next one

    when you remember these you can bring them all together at once and and then you will have a ton of power

    I used to hate all fighting sports until I saw the humility and camaraderie they showed each other after the fights..

    Bloodiest fight of the night and after the battle they are all hugs and cheering each other on.. something special in that… for certain..

    Congrats on finding what helps you


    Thank you for sharing the video and thank you for the support!

    River Christian

    Hi Leah,

    First. You should be commended. It is one of the toughest and bravest things to even attempt what you’re doing. I agree with what Matt said. I have been training in martial arts since I was 4 years old. I have seen a lot of things. My opinion is that maybe your sparring partner is going too hard on you. Her skills may be to advanced for you at the moment. You should ask for a partner who is about your skill level or a little better. Sparring someone too advanced will kill your confidence. It would be like playing tennis against Venus Williams. You won’t learn anything and end up feeling frustrated. Take your time and go slowly.


    The first step to overcoming fear is admitting that it’s there. One method involves imagining you are back in the ring and then feeling your fear arise. Except you don’t add a story you just notice the fear. Feel it in your body and let it be. This way of holding fear can help you let it be what it is.


    Hi Leah,

    Damn, Muay Thai, that’s serious stuff. I practiced martial arts for 6 years on and off and spent some time training in BJJ and can tell you, even in a friendly sparring match where I was not getting beat up, just being stuck under someone can feel suffocating and scary.

    I would never be cool with getting kicking in the shins or elsewhere with mal intent. You definitely managed something I would never be comfortable doing. I tend to think that in a real match you will do great because you tackle real fear in the sparring match. Many people go into sparring matches with no fear and when you have that your real matches may be different. But if you spar with fear and perform ok, then in a regular match I think you will do as good or better.

    Go kick some ass.


    It’s all about your experience. You gotta get back in the ring no matter what. It’s like falling off a horse – they say you should get straight back on.
    You’ve learnt everything, you know the moves, you just need to learn how to deal with the pressure of being in the ring. Once you’re comfortable with that then it’ll be easier for you to unleash everything you’ve learnt.
    I hope this helps.
    I trained in Muay Thai in Thaiand a few years back and my instructor always told me to get back up, throw more kicks, HARDER! Even if my kicks were with no power because of my exhaustion and all I wanted to do was curl up in a ball and stop kicking that pad – You have to push!!

    I know you posted this in August but you said about fighting in the beginning of 2014 – what’s the latest??


    Muay Thai fight March 22nd 🙂 I am very excited. I appreciate the support and the suggestions.

    Training in Thailand?! That is my dream.


    Thank you so much! That is helpful!


    Thank you, I like that! I will use that. I appreciate it!


    Thank you so much. I appreciate that!



    you got all the tools already to get the job done, all the advice is awesome, and will help build up your self-belief more, its all practice makes perfect, mind, body and soul.

    im still working on this and i boxed semi-pro over four years ago, as ive been training again this year.

    reading these replies, and your story, similar to experiences of my past.

    getting beat bad by a more skillful opponent, means a fighter learns only to be beat.

    however, you took it, and kept going.

    not many do!

    get yourself a fight, dive into it, let the world, family, friends, know you are doing it, i guarantee you will do it, and seriously enjoy it too 🙂

    and you may also find some people around you, who you may secretly thought were tougher, are not a touch on you, as them people are not getting into a ring, but you are.

    all the best.

    bryan g

    Hey Leah,
    It is great to see that you have admitted to being fearful, but you can take that fear and use that to your advantage. I have an anxiety disorder, so it was pretty rough when I started mma. It is tough to compete when you have a disorder like I did, but I decided to take control of my life and mind. If fighting again scares you, fight again because avoidance will affect you negatively. You have to continue to work on it, and in time it will heal. It is a process. Check out my new website, revolutionary-learn.com. I promote learning outside of the classroom and awareness for problems like this.
    Hope to hear from you soon,
    Knock them out !

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