In his tae kwon do classes, former world welterweight kickboxing champion Eric Melton covers techniques from basic stances and blocks to black-belt sparring. In another room, members of the competitive gymnastics team hone their flips and flexibility in year-round preparation for bouts against rival gyms. The competitive streak continues on in the cheerleading team, with whom decorated cheer directors harness national-title experience to perfect the squad's choreography and teamwork.
Along with classes with a competitive bent, the Mpact staff hosts sessions for kids who just want to try out new activities and have fun such a Nerf Wars where kids engage in friendly nerf football battles or open gym sessions. A parent-and-child gymnastics class introduces youngsters to obstacle courses and trampolines, and extreme tumbling's foam pits and padded mats train students of all skill levels to jump and flip more fearlessly than a blindfolded dolphin in a shark tank. For performing pupils, Mpact also teaches aerial-acrobatics classes and Demo Team programs, where kids learn how to deftly handle martial-arts weapons, including nunchaku and staffs.
The instructors at Arte da Guerra Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialize in intense Brazilian jiu-jitsu instruction during detailed classes. Sessions cover the martial art’s style of facing opponents regardless of size, with emphasis on takedowns, submissions, and grappling rather than kicks and strikes. Classes also cover aspects of fitness and competition, and Arte da Guerra (“art of war” in Portuguese) also offers classes in other martial-arts styles, such as judo and muay thai kickboxing.
Master Carlos Gracie Jr. founded the Gracie Barra Association—which now encompasses more than 300 Brazilian jujitsu schools—to aid students in developing their understanding of the art beyond simple competition. His schools not only teach combative techniques but a four-pillared philosophy that instructors and students embrace: brotherhood, cooperation, discipline, and respect.
The instructors work with other trainers to expand the class repertoire beyond basic jujitsu, offering women's self-defense, kid's classes, and a black-belt leadership program. Each teacher brings a long history of competitive expertise in the subject they teach and bears a high-ranking belt in the art of jujitsu; for example, head instructor Marcio Feitosa holds a third-degree black belt. The facility consists of a series of open training areas, which rely upon big floor-to-ceiling windows and glow-in-the-dark teachers for light.
Brentwood Brazilian Jiu-jitsu's team of seasoned martial artists works to keep their classes welcoming yet intense. Though their teaching style fosters a supportive environment, they challenge students at every turn to master the grappling techniques of Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Aside from the adult classes, the studio offers kids' sessions that demonstrate how to stop bullying with practical self-defense skills.
Nashville Mixed Martial Arts' experienced instructors keep students fighting fit during cardio kickboxing bootcamp and mixed martial arts classes that unfold over more than 7,000 square feet of mat space. The schedule's one-hour cardio kickboxing bootcamp sessions turn hearts into war drums as students batter heavy thai-style bags and tone muscles while performing pushups, crunches, and pantomimes of favorite heavy-metal lyrics. Mixed martial arts classes blend up a mixture of brazilian jujitsu, muay thai kickboxing, wrestling, and boxing in every 60-minute class, teaching basic moves and defensive strategies as students improve their balance, coordination, and strength. Call ahead for scheduled MMA times and reservations.