I am planning on starting a martial arts club at my college as a student group. My main idea is that myself and others who are trained in different martial arts disciplines — striking, grappling, traditional katas, street fighting, etc. We will teach each other our styles of fighting.

I also want to, as a group, learn some highly-effective martial arts system with a focus on "street fighting" skills — ground fighting, fighting multiple opponents, defence against various weapons, etc. — something like Krav Maga or some military program like the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP).

What are ways for the group to train in these types of martial arts? I've thought about perhaps having a "class" section every meeting where one of the members teaches a lesson about something from their system, and then a section after that when people can spar/train in various systems their interested in. Also, what are good online resources for training in a system like Krav Maga Obviously nothing would replace a good teacher, but we won't really have access to that.

4 Answers 4


Your options as a college club are:

  1. Share what each member knows
  2. Find a coach or teacher
  3. Be a thoroughly mediocre "fight club"

I recommend avoiding (3). Learning from online resources is hard and not recommended. Either accept that the styles you'll learn are the styles that each of your (possibly flaky, deranged, drama-bringing) fellow students brings to class, or accept that you need to find a coach to show you things.

In terms of having a "class" separate from "sparring"; I highly disrecommend this. Showing moves for a half hour then sparring seems to me to be a much better option. You could change the sparring rules according to whomever is teaching, but this can also create confusion and lack of long-term progress. Focusing on one or two specific arts and their sparring rulesets over time is more likely to produce understanding and skill.

  • 1
    +1 - #3 is going to be hard for them to avoid :)
    – slugster
    Commented Jul 13, 2013 at 12:49

Do any of you hold a teaching belt in any of the martial arts you do? It also sounds like it will be more of a 'mixing all of our martial arts together' than an MMA program as is understood with cage fighting?

The real thing you need is an instructor of some sort. You cannot just find highly effective street techniques; most of what you know, and what you see on the internet is ineffective lies performed by people who have never been in a fight.

You will not learn to fight multiple attackers in a realistic way from your friends. You won't learn that from a martial arts instructor either. Not in a way that works. Watch any of their demonstrations vs multiple attackers; they all rely on a script. Against multiple attackers your main defense is: run. Maybe : throw whatever you have in your hand, then run.

I cannot stress this enough; get a qualified instructor; a judoka, a wrestler, a BJJ high blue/purple, then you can have a good class.

In a good class, you should 'spar' ( go live, with restraint) pretty much every class. like 95% of the classes. Sometimes there are circumstances; e.g. first few days, injury, etc. There always have to be drills where you can fail/go against a resisting opponent.

If you're just a bunch of people who are all starting out from scratch, it can be very dangerous both in, you'll break each others arms, as well as, you'll (very likely) learn terrible technique.

  • -1 for "You won't learn that from a martial arts instructor either. Not in a way that works." and "qualified instructor; a judoka, a wrestler, a BJJ high blue/purple, then you can have a good class" - clear and absurd bias.
    – Tony D
    Commented Aug 22, 2014 at 12:00

MCMAP is a good martial arts program and the online resources (the guide book which can be download from the US military site is really quite good with really detailed body movements).

I would suggest to start practicing the core curriculum for each belt level the double prescribed amount of hours.

As above I would suggest free sparring with rules and protective equipment up to 25% of strength every session.

Each session should have the following structure: - Warmup (10 - 20 min) - Basic drills (Stance, strikes and footwork) (20 mins) - Drills of the day (20 mins, 1 or 2 drills per class) - Bag work/shadow boxing/pair shadow boxing/spparing/circle of death.


Sounds like you have lots of wants and wishes. But the best thing is to simplify, don't try and do everything,

sounds to me you want to focus on :-

striking, clinching, takedowns, ground fight (no gi, with strikes).

So if you lay this out to all the people with different skills, you can all contribute how you want to do each part, look at what each style has to offer, work out want you to drill.

Then make sure you have good sparring scenarios (just standing, just takedowns, just ground, striking->clinch-takedown takedown->ground, everything) all the while taking reasonable safety precautions.

Then look at how sparring went, and then feed that back into learning. Very important to have that feedback loop.

Once you are established and people actually have some skills, add in knife/stick/multiple attackers.

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