Ever since the rise of MMA and more specifically the UFC, more and more people are jumping on the bandwagon; claiming they’ve trained martial arts at some point in their life or maybe they have some insane Jiu Jitsu moves; because watching YouTube or a 15 second Instagram clip and repeating the moves is their key to mastering the discipline. I once had a guy in the barbershop tell me, “I’m a Purple Belt…We’ll I would’ve been if I didn’t quit.” WHAT!!! This one is my favorite; “I Train UFC”…HAHA!!! I’m not preaching from my high horse, nor do I claim I can take on or beat the biggest and baddest but apparently anyone who’s thrown a punch in anger at some point in their life can step into the cage.
Whilst the hype for the industry is growing with more events on TV and Pay Per View every month, MMA being legalized in NY State, promotions popping up around the country; how exactly do you filter through the crap and wannabes? You may find a local bar a good place to start or it may be one of your closest friends. They assume they are MMA or BJJ experts because they can stand up for themselves and shadow box at the gym between reps. Maybe they won a playground scrap 20+ years ago against the high school bully, so of course they’d be fully prepared to take on Conor McGregor, Jon Jones or Ronda Rousey, and we’re the idiots for questioning otherwise. Either way if they stepped into a ring or just walked into an open mat at any Brazilian Jiu Jitsu studio they would be in for a rude awakening. But in the minds of some, if they are kitted out in the latest skull printed Affliction t-shirt, maybe even a pair of Bad Boy fight shorts or a t-shirt from MMA Warehouse, they will of course be fully prepared for what comes their way.
OK, so I wear BJJ T-shirts every chance I get. I’m wearing our “Who’s Your Fadda” BJJ Tee right now. I started selling BJJ and MMA tees because I fell in love with the sport. After 17 years as a fan of the UFC and 2 years of training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, a few tournaments and countless injuries, I think I’ve earned the right. If you’re a fan, hats off, but if you’re wearing a martial arts tee to put on a front then you’re missing the point. I wear what I wear, because I’m proud of the time I’ve put in on the mats. I wear what I wear because my instructors have invested time in sharing their talent and I want the world to know; I want the whole world to ask me if I train so I can tell them how Jiu Jitsu has changed my life. I want you to see how proud I am of the time I invested in training so that maybe you’ll ask, “When’s the next class? Can I come check out your school?” That’s why I wear what I wear and why I print funny BJJ tees.
It’s becoming more and more common for people to wear MMA clothing just for shits and giggles, and just that’s fine. Woman wear Yoga pants and don’t intend to work out, guys carry shaker cups but never purchase supplements and both wear Everlast Boxing tees but will never step into the ring. Shit, I wear Under Armour Golf hats because I love the fit. I can’t swing a golf club to save my life but I’m not walking around acting like I’m Tiger Woods. I don’t expect that every guy wearing a Yankee cap can ‘go yard’ but don’t tell me you can if the last time you swung a bat was 20 years ago in gym class. Get it?
I’m just sayin’...