BJJ Gym Red Flags 🚩
Author: XMartial Editorial | Published Date:
Searching for a new gym can be stressful and even more stressful if you’re not sure what negative things you should be wary of. Here’s a list of red flags you should look out for when looking for a new gym.
1. Instructor is constantly on their phone during class
If the instructor is not actively instructing (i.e. making sure students are doing the moves correctly, making sure to answer questions etc.) it’s a sign that they may not value your time as a student or may not care if you’re actually successful or not.
2. Women don’t train at the gym
Many times, if a gym has absolutely no women or women don’t stay long, it’s probably not a great atmosphere to train in. This may also mean the instructor has had or attempted to have inappropriate relationships with their students.
3. There are gym favorites
If the gym has favorites, they may be overlooking other students or not providing quality instruction to everyone. Additionally, the gym may not have a strong team because only two or three individuals are recognized out of the group. This can lead to bitterness and many other negative feelings.
4. The instructors don’t roll (excluding injuries)
Plain and simple, if you don’t see your instructor roll, you can’t tell what their skill level is or if what they’re teaching is applicable. If your instructor feels like they’re “too good” to roll with the students, you’re in for a bad time.
5. The gym is dirty
This one is a bit of a no-brainer. If the mats are dirty/there’s little to no sanitation, there’s a good chance you may catch something from rolling there. If the gym isn’t taken care of, the students probably aren’t either.
6. Instructors no show
There’s nothing worse than showing up to a gym ready to learn then having to head home because the instructor never shows up. You as a student are paying for a service and it’s important that that commitment is honored on both ends. Accidents happen but if your instructor won’t send out a notification of a changed schedule or is always apologizing for not showing up, it’s a sign that once again, they don’t value your time.
7. If something feels “off”
It’s absolutely okay to trust your gut. If you get a bad feeling from a place, it’s okay to leave. Remember, BJJ (and many martial arts) can be dangerous and it’s not worth it to get hurt because you wanted to save face.
At the end of the day, find a place that aligns with your goals and makes you feel like part of the team. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a great martial art and can be even better if you’re training at the right place. It’s alright to be picky until you find the place you’d like to be and always keep an eye out for red flags.
AUTHOR: KATHRYN PETTY