Funny Video and Realistic Training Methods

The instructors at Smash Gyms are life-long martial artists with various backgrounds of different self-defense and martial arts disciplines.We were there when the fight world was shocked during the original UFC’s which proved that a knowledgable grappling specialist could easily manhandle other high level martial artist who lacked real grappling knowledge. This brought attention to the fact that for decades the Gracie family had open challenges to other martial arts and fighting styles and had defeated countless opponents in no rules fights. We put our ego’s aside and went through hard training to develop real skills, and came to the realization that our past training in combat  systems with unrealistic training methods had little value in a real fight.

Through the evolution of sport fighting and MMA in the last 20 years it has become apparent that combat sport styles did very well in real combat situations. This was because of training methods. They go 100% live and test techniques. If you go 50%, you are not going live. Theories, techniques, and strategies must be tested. You must try to prove their effectiveness and not just take your instructors word for it. Sport fighters train this way and have evolved sophisticated systems of fighting. Skills in these sports have been passed down from generation to generation and evolved to be as effective as possible through natural selection and a scientific process. Professional fighters, police departments and even the US Army replaced old systems with these disciplines because the effectiveness could be proven in 100% live situations. Many lifelong martial artist came to the realization that although it was a jagged pill to swallow they needed to learn these arts after losing to these sport practitioners.

Specialist in different fighting sports became hot commodities as coaches for any serious martial artist or fighter. People who were paying attention learned that you could not be successful learning from one style. Jack of all trade fighting styles proved to be a beginner systems at best. The best fighters in the world learned they need a coach for each discipline. A specialist trainer is one that has spent the 10+ years it takes to master a real skill. Fighters realized that to reach a high skill level they needed to get out of their comfort zone, put their ego aside and step into the world of the specialist. They learned that they need to lose in 100% live situations until they could win in 100% live situations. This is how to develop real skill that is repeatable in a live situations.

While the UFC and MMA in general grew in popularity, many traditional martial artist took refuge in claiming that their style was too dangerous to prove in a real fight. When they did go live with people that understood how to produce a real skill it became obvious that practitioners of these untested fighting styles typically did not progress beyond beginner level technique in actual combat, even after many years of training. Ironically these styles are the ones that usually claim to be the most “realistic”.  Many of these styles focused preparing on a mentality for certain situations that never happen to make up for their lack of realistic training methods. When these unfortunate practitioners actually were challenged they were not ready for the intensity due to the lack of 100% sparring, and their curriculum of untested, unproven techniques. They would be dominated by specialist every time.

Many styles or instructors claim to have the best answers to every question. They may claim that they have the answer to beat everyone in every situation. This comes from insecurities or marketing. It may seem like confidence but it’s a rouse to control students and instructors to hide their “styles” weaknesses. We all have weaknesses. Those that won’t admit it, often have the biggest ones. The truth is that if you only take MMA, Krav Maga or other general self-defense fitness classes it will be difficult take reach a true level of mastery. Individuals with existing skill sets in focused combat sports will easily dominate in those styles. You will need to take lessons focused on individual disciplines from true experts in each subject if you are serious about becoming effective in self-defense and martial arts. There are no short cuts.

If you want to truly learn a subject you need to see an authority on the matter. To combine kicks and punches at the highest level you need to find a kickboxing coach. To learn to stop or execute a takedown you need to study wrestling and judo. You simply will not be able to execute or defend against those willing to do it. If you want to dominate, control or submit an attacker in a one on one fight you should take BJJ classes. If you want to learn to knife fight then find an expert! No fighting style is an expert in every situation.

For a Martial Artist to evolve techniques, strategies and methods must be tested in unchoreographed 100% live training. Practitioners must be scientific about their training. Don’t just take your instructors word for it. Make it work live. True testing must occur with live resistance. In real life nothing is perfect. When an instructor shows a technique he is showing an example of an exact situation. When you go live there are an infinite amount of variables that could happen. This forces the practitioner to react and adapt the technique in a way to make it work. This leads to a deeper understanding and then to mastery.

To reach the highest level in anything, you need focused instruction. Many times the fighting styles that will give you cliff-notes of other arts were started by a “guru” that actually went and learned from specialist! They went to experts and put in the time and became skilled. You should do the same! Go to the source. If you go to one person to learn everything you are likely learning watered down 3rd or 4th hand information. In any area, there are experts that truly understand. You must spend the time in their world to really be effective. If you aren’t losing, you aren’t really learning. It is important to distinguish between scenario training and live training. Training partners pushing you with pads then letting you win during a difficult drill is not real fighting no matter how challenging it seems.

Combat is not a religion. Martial Arts have come so far in the last 20 years and many people still don’t get it. Time and time again people have marketed end all be all to fighting styles with no substance. The best instructors have an open mind and continue to learn and evolve on their own and pass that on to their students. Fighting has been around since the beginning of time and it is now evolving at a breakneck pace. Because of the internet our ability to find, share, and test information is easier than ever before. You can find live footage of what works. There are thousands of real fight videos online. You will see virtually no fights end in groin shots, eye gouges and other “dirty ” techniques that many claim take the place of real skill. You will only fulfill your potential by getting out of your comfort zone, putting your ego aside and find true experts that are willing to show you their skills in a 100% live situation. If this idea seems sacrilegious to you then you are part of a cult, not a fighting style.

Veteran martial artist have seen trends come and go and then repeat. Even now every few years a new heavily marketed fighting style shows up late to the party claiming to be the end all be all answer to fighting. These new styles are often popular because they protect the fragile ego’s of the students and instructors. It is traditional martial arts packaged as realistic scenario training without the real training methods. Those with experience know this is nothing new and has been proven to be ineffective over and over.

“One test is worth 1000 expert opinions” – Wernher von Braun

Realistic Weapons training

You really get hit!

Below is realistic close combat weapons training. They use a paintball gun so you can see who really gets shot! Many theory based “experts” may criticize techniques used to win during this live test without but are unwilling to prove it in a live situation with experienced combat sport athletes. Also they may totally disregard the results of the test due to years of being heavily influenced with untested theory. If you train live you will see that individuals with combat “sport” backgrounds will dominate other styles with very little training.

Smash Gyms at the BJJ US Open

Santa Clara – The Smash Gyms Brazilian Jiu-jitsu team had a great showing at the 2012 Brazilian Jiu-jitsu US Open held in San Jose CA at Independence High School. The US Open is one of the largest and most prestigious BJJ tournaments in the US. After two days of hard fought competition, the team brought home 4 gold, 3 silver, and 1 bronze medals. At last years 2011 US Open, Smash brought home six medals with only being opened for less than a year. We expect Smash Jiu-Jitsu to have continued success as a program and a growing medal count every year in both local and nationally recognized sport jiu-jitsu tournaments.

Big congratulations to everyone involved with the Smash Gyms BJJ program. Our success is the result of a team effort from all the competitors, coaches and training partners!

The success Smash has had since we opened in January 2011 is a testament to the dedicated team of instructors and amazing members we have training every night at the gym. Most of our Jiu-jitsu students choose not to compete regularly. We believe that our training environment is unique in that both competitors and hobbyist can find a supportive, friendly, and knowledgable staff and training partners ready to help anyone reach their personal goals.


Here’s a highlight video of some of our Smash competitors in action!

New Classes Added to the September 2012 Schedule!

Below is a link to the new Smash schedule for September 2012. Starting September 10th we’ve added a new 4:30 SmashFit time slot so that busy parents can workout while their kids train. Morning, Noon and Evening classes available.



We often hear from our members that since they’ve joined Smash they actually look forward to going to the gym. This unique experience is the result of an amazing staff of instructors and the supportive members. Our classes deliver a fitness experience that allows you to actually learn something in a fun group format as you workout. Learning a new skill as you get in shape helps members to stay consistent and interested. The comprehensive schedule allows you to do a new workout every day to keep it interesting!

Smash Gyms has a versatile and unique member base. Located in Silicon Valley between Santa Clara and Sunnyvale we have a constant influx of new members from diverse backgrounds. Because Smash offers corporate memberships for Silicon Valley start ups, many of our members are new to the area and have used Smash Gyms group fitness classes to meet new friends. Our friendly staff and members are very active in the local community. Every night at Smash is like a social fitness event! Our classes are interactive  in which you will often be paired or matched up with partners. This group format allows for a supportive environment that will help you reach your fitness goals, provide networking opportunities and meet great people with similar goals.

Our comprehensive schedule includes zumba, ujam, bootcamp, kettlebell, strength & conditioning, personal training, jiu-jitsu, krav maga, kickboxing, yoga, kids wrestling and martial arts and more. Every class is taught by a true expert in their field. Crossfit certified instructors, 3rd Degree BJJ Black Belts, Krav Maga experts from Israel, experienced personal trainers just to name a few. The goal of our instructors is to run classes in which participants will have fun, get a great workout in addition to transferring their expert knowledge to our members. You will not get lost in the crowd at Smash. Each instructor pays close attention to the progress of those in their class. Every class is like a personal training session.

Morning Mixed Martial Arts Fitness Classes

Sunnyvale & Santa Clara- Smash Gyms has morning MMA training from 10:30am-11:30am Monday through Friday! These beginner friendly MMA fitness classes are a great way to improve your overall fitness and functional strength while learning self-defense. The MMA class participants range from professional & amateur fighters to stay-at-home moms.

In this fun and unique fitness class participants will learn techniques, drills and workouts borrowed from a variety of disciplines. The morning MMA class teaches techniques from Boxing, Kickboxing, Jiu-Jitsu, Wrestling, and Judo. The wide variety of class formats, strength and conditioning exercises and fighting styles makes a fun and exciting class to help keep our members interested and motivated. This class has a strong emphasis and safety and welcomes all skill and fitness levels. All of our group fitness and exercise classes at Smash are all beginner friendly. The 10:30am MMA class is perfect for students, people with flexible work schedules, housewives, or anyone that sneak out of work!

Immediately following the MMA class is a Noon Jiu-Jitsu class five days a week. The Lunch time fitness and BJJ classes are some of the most popular classes at Smash! Lunch time classes include Bootcamp, Kettlebell, JuJitsu, MMA, Kickboxing and more. Student discounts available! Smash is located on the border of Sunnyvale and Santa Clara. Just 10 minutes from San Jose, Milpitas, Mountain View and Fremont.

Try a Free Week of Unlimited Classes!

Smash Gyms Jiu-Jitsu Team Highlights from American Cup

Below are some of the highlights from The Smash Gyms Jiu-jitsu Team’s dominating performance at the American Cup in San Jose at Independence High School. A vast majority of our Jiu-Jitsu students choose not to compete and grapple recreationally for fun and fitness. Those that choose to compete have done very well. In our beginner friendly BJJ program we do not push our students to compete, but if they choose to we help to provide them all the tools necessary to be successful.

Smash is fortunate to have top level Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Instruction with very high level wrestling and judo combined into a comprehensive grappling program that will safely progress beginners at an accelerated pace. Our system is designed as a path for the average person to progress safely and quickly into an expert grappler.