Anxiety, Gung Fu and MMA

I have low level anxiety before training MMA. Moments of doubt and self deprecation creep in, in which being a Gung Fu man feels more like a limiting factor.

The rounds are timed during (no gi) grappling bouts and my main training partners are not only seasoned veterans, but also ex-fighters.

Last night my main grappling coach took me apart in a calculated way. Strength and explosiveness are his forte. After him came an Olympic level wrestler, who is blindingly fast and fluid. And the 30 seconds respite wasn’t enough before I faced a hyper-flexible Jiu Jitsu black belt.

Words of encouragement are cold comfort at times like this.

They say that you are only as good as your training partners. My partners are world class. Mostly, I feel entirely out of my depths, but I freely admit that grappling makes me uncomfortable (even if I have reached a level of competence).

Yet, when gloves are strapped on and I have the freedom to self express with footwork, punches and kicks, there is no anxiety.

There is just union with the grand ultimate, a feeling of oneness with all creation.

This is when Gung Fu becomes liberating.

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