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Training with the Family!


How many times have you left your house only to catch some harsh words from friends/family about how much time you spend in the gym? While the single guys like myself don’t have to deal with the familial ties I definitely understand. The solution is a lot simpler than you think. The solution is to simply have your family join the academy and also train BJJ. Jiu Jitsu is a great art and Academies offer classes for all ages.  So here are the top reasons your family should be training Jiu Jitsu.

  • Built in quality time– In this era it is easy to lose track of time and neglect your family obligations. It is easy to not spend as much time with your loved ones as you should. Training BJJ as a family is a great way to ensure you can spend time with each other. Training Jiu-Jitsu will also strengthen your relationship because you will all be learning together and helping each other.
  • Your family will be healthy and confident– This is something most families strive for , but few achieve. Training Jiu-Jitsu will almost ensure that both of these desires are met.
  • Built in Family vacations!– travel for competition and training is very common is Jiu-Jitsu. When you train as a family these trips can double as a vacation. Now when you go to California to train or for a big competition, you can also go do other family activities and it’s a win/win situation.

There are so many benefits of training Jiu Jitsu as a family that I could keep naming. These are my own personal favorites, but what else do you think is great about training with your family?



Baytown Student Highlight—Lorena Reyes

What is your name and age?

My name is Lorena and I'm 32 years old :) 

When did you join Elite MMA?

I joined Elite MMA in August

Why did you decide to start taking martial arts?

My kids were interested in Jiu Jitsu so I thought it would be good to start getting fit.

In the past what had caused you not to take martial arts?

I was insecure about my weight I thought it was going to be hard for me.

Is this your first time taking martial arts and what classes do you take?

As an adult this is my first time taking kick boxing classes.

If you had any concerns about joining Elite MMA, what helped you with your decision?

I was unhealthy and not really motivated to do anything.  I was not happy on my outer appearance or my inner appearance so I decided I needed to do something. My kids are really active and I knew that if I tried my best that I would motivate them to try their best. It also helps that we have awesome teachers like Mr. Robert, Mr. Julian and Mr. Matt to keep us motivated.

Since you have been part of Elite, please share what you have been able to accomplish?

I'm more confident about myself.  I know when I want to give up because I'm tired I just have to push myself harder. It also helps to see the scale showing me I'm 25 lbs lighter than what I was. Yay me!!!! LOL

Anything else you want to share with someone who is looking to get involved with martial arts or looking to change their current lifestyle?

I would just tell anyone who is interested to "just do it," don't over think it because I was that person that would always tell myself "I'll start Monday or next week or next month” and that time never came. I was always tired and I want to be able to stick around for my kids. It's a good way to discipline yourself. You work to hard to reach a goal and it makes you think about what you put in your mouth. When you put your mind and heart in it, it's not impossible.



Kingwood/Baytown Instructor Highlight: Frost Murphy


What is your martial arts teaching history and where do you currently teach?

 I began teaching martial arts to my sister when she was 6 and I was 9 years old. She fired me quickly. My next opportunity to teach martial arts was at Elite MMA 2002ish. Eric asked me to teach technique while he helped a new student off to the side… I was mega stressed. Sweating more than the students doing the technique.

I currently teach the BEST class of the week. Tuesday Lunch class in Baytown. Come check it out!

What is your current rank in martial arts?

Second degree Black Belt in BJJ. 

What caused you to start practicing martial arts?

My friend invited me to go try out a class and I liked it. 

What is your educational background?

Graduate from Texas Tech University. 

Do you have a competitive history in martial arts?

Yes, I competed pretty consistently for about a decade in BJJ, MMA and a little Judo. 

What do you see is the main benefit the average individual can receive from martial arts?

Once you have had your butt kicked quite a few times, you start to walk around life with a better attitude. Everyone needs a good butt whoop’n every now and again. 

What is your favorite part about practicing martial arts?

It’s a fun way to exercise while making friends and learning something that might keep you safe one day. 

Where do you hope martial arts will take you later in your life?

I hope it will keep me active my whole life. It gives me a reason to stay in shape and live a healthy life. 



Westheimer Student Highlight— Dallas & Elle Mabry

What is your age?                               When did you join Elite MMA?

Dallas 35 and Elle 5                              Dallas 2004 and Elle 2015 

Why did you decide to start training martial arts?

I joined Elite MMA the summer before I graduated college.  I was looking for a new activity to stay in shape.  I had been involved in body building through college and was looking for a change of pace - I wanted and activity that was more engaging than just lifting weights.  In high school I was on the wrestling team for several years and thought that Brazilian Jiu Jitsu would be a good fit with that background.  I was also very interested in the self-defense aspects of MMA and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu after working security in bars and night clubs through college.

Now, 12 years later, my motivations are different.  I really fell in love with the sport of Brazilian Jiu Jistu almost immediately.  The physical challenge, mental strategy, and problem solving all kept me very driven.  In addition to that I have formed great relationships and friendships over the years.  This is true a passion of mine and I want to share that with my children.  I began bringing my daughter Elle with me to the gym a year ago to introduce her to the sport through some private lessons.  She really enjoys having dedicated time that her and I spend together – I cherish that as well.  She loves the fact that there is a female instructor (Ana).  I also like the fact that she is getting great physical activity and motor skill development in a safe environment with people who care about her. 

Is this your first time taking martial arts and what classes do you take?

Over the past 12 years I have taken several different classes at Elite – Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Kickboxing, Boxing, and general cardio conditioning.  As my life demands and schedule have changed, I have had to narrow my focus to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu which is where my roots are.

Elle just started with Jiu Jitsu last year, but a few weeks ago she asked if she could do some “punching” drills during her private lesson.  I think Jiu Jitsu is a great starting point for kids because it helps them develop their gross motor skills and general coordination.  It’s also very interactive which helps keep them engaged. 

If you had any concerns joining Elite MMA what helped you with your decision?

When I first joined, I was drawn to the expertise and teaching style at the school.  At that time Eric Williams had recently won 2 world championship medals and Hai Nguyen was going to go compete in Brazil – I really liked the fact that the instructors were active in competition and using their knowledge.  You can still see that today with Robert, Julian, and Jordan having just competed and done well at the black belt level of IBJJF Houston Open Tournament.

When it comes to my kids the decision is much more around the people at the school.  I have the privilege of knowing the Elite MMA staff very well and consider them all my friends.  There is never a doubt in my mind that my daughter is cared for and her safety, security, and best interest is the #1 priority.  This makes my decision very easy. 

Since you have been at Elite, what have you been able to accomplish?

There have been a lot of milestones in my life since joining Elite MMA in 2004.  Specific to the sport, I began competing in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tournaments 6 months after joining.  I was learning all these cool techniques, but I wanted to test myself in real time.  After several years of Jiu Jitsu competitions and going to the Pan Am tournament in 2007, I had only lost 3 matches and decided I needed to test myself again by competing in Mixed Martial Arts fights.  I won my first 2 pro fights and then suffered a back injury training for my 3rd fight.  Fortunately I was able to stay active in the sport although I don’t compete anymore. In 2012 I received my black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu which is my biggest accomplishment.

Personally during this same time, I married my wife of 7 years and we have 2 children.  I’ve also been able to maintain a successful career in finance and accounting.  I consider all of these great accomplishments and my friends at Elite MMA have been there to celebrate and support me in both the athletic and personal areas.  I enjoy the fact that my daughter is learning something I love and I can’t wait for my son to get involved as well (2 years old).   Having the people I love participate with me in a sport that I love is a true blessing.

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