Train Like a Fighter and Experience the Ultimate Workout, Right Here in Pasadena.

Our "mixed martial arts" and self-defense program for adults includes elements of boxing, Muay Thai, western wrestling, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and more. These are taught through the lens of principles to determine combative usefulness, based on personal contexts and abilities. Not everyone is built the same, has the same capabilities or needs, and our program is organized to be useful for each person as an individual.

self-defense tactics sbg socal

What is "Mixed Martial Arts"?

"Mixed Martial Arts", or "MMA" as it is commonly referred, arose in part due to the insight that there is no such thing as a "boxing fight", a "jiu jitsu fight", or the like. There are certainly sports that isolate these skills, but the point is the realization that against a truly non-cooperative opponent, "styles" of martial arts are not terribly relevant. MMA is a sport, but the skills learned transcend styles, in favor of usefulness, and can be adapted for self-defense in a non-sport circumstance.


Can I learn Mixed Martial Arts in a Foundations Class?

“Foundations” are in part defined as "necessities", and these are included as a part of every class. Instruction is presented in sections of one or three fundamental methods/principles/skills, that become easily integrated as a whole. These are mostly "standup" skills at those ranges of fighting - long/kickboxing range (hands, shins, elbows, knees), clinch range (wrestling/grappling, grabs and holds), with some basic integration fighting from the ground. At some stages, there is also consideration/instruction surrounding the use of "tools" (weapons).

Along with student safety, professionalism, and a fun environment, the above should be standard in all schools. At SBG, part of our mission is the use of "aliveness" (a term coined by SBG founder Matt Thornton), and "progressive resistance" (a term coined by Burton Richardson).

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Great Coaches Make It Safe For Anyone to Train Mixed Martial Arts.

Students are often curious about methods and levels of contact, and whether or not the Coaches have their best interests in mind. At SBG SoCal, our Coaches are obsessed with providing a safe and healthy training environment no matter what background you have.

"Progressive resistance" is a tool used to modulate levels of contact/intensity in Introducing a skill, Isolating that skill for learning the mechanics, use, and context, and Integrating that skill with drilling/sparring/rolling. These are the "Three I's" of teaching in the SBG family of gyms. Simplifying this - progressive resistance means that the student gets to determine for their partner how hard and fast a skill is being employed, and it can be increased/decreased on that basis for what the student feels like they can handle, as well as create an environment for performance improvement. This is also assisted with the objective eye of the coaches, that the student does not take on something they may not be ready for. Progressive resistance is a lesson in and of itself, assisting both performance improvement and student safety.

At SBG So Cal, most anyone can learn these skills in a fun and safe environment. Some athletic ability might help, but our methods intend to transcend the necessity of attributes (speed, power, size) in as many ways as possible, to help each individual become more fit, and more able to handle combative problems. This means that female or male, smaller or larger, most anyone can become more fit, skilled, and have fun.

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Will Learning Mixed Martial Arts at SBG SoCal Teach Me Useful Self-Defense Skills?

Yes, it will.

Learning self-defense is actually finding out the truth about what actually happens in a fight.  Next comes conditioning to recognize what is happening at any time during a physical confrontation and adapting to it. The best way to achieve this is through the SBG method. Directly from the Straight Blast Gym website:

"The Truth – Training connection exists within the arts themselves. Real technical skill within functional martial arts, like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, wrestling, boxing, etc., cannot be faked anymore than someone can fake being able to speak Spanish, play the guitar, or rock climb. It is a measurable, testable, empirical skill. As such, it demands sincerity. And that, in and of itself – is one of its greatest benefits.

Since its very start, SBG has been an organization created for the pursuit of truth in combat. And its philosophy is one that places truth as a guiding principle.

For SBG Truth is our #1 Principle. We must be Sincere in our questions, armed with the appropriate Epistemology in order to accurately answer our questions, and Authentic enough to follow the evidence that arises from that epistemology to its rational conclusions, even if those conclusions don’t match what we had hoped to find."

Along with "Progressive Resistance", SBG employs another term to address this concern: "Aliveness" refers to a method of not only instruction but a way of determining useful combative skills . . . and ones that aren't. "Aliveness" refers to the use (or observation) of three things: timing, energy, and motion. While the details of the usefulness of these ideas are beyond the scope of an introduction, it is important to note that the skills taught will be done so in the presence of these three ideas. This makes learning useful, as well as fun.

In short, the SBG method is the premier method for learning functional fighting and self-defense skills, minus all of the "fluff" that most folks are familiar with thanks to media, movies, and misconceptions. Try for yourself and see the Straight Blast Gym difference!

progressive resistance in jiu jitsu classes