Most people dream about vacationing at an island resort, or pitching a tent at some remote campsite. However, there is a growing movement among vacation-goers, be it people who love training in the martial arts or those who want to embark on a bucket list adventure, to experience a holiday training camp at a world-class fight gym.
To satisfy the masses, and the average mixed martial artist looking to expand upon his or her skill set, there are plenty of MMA gyms in Asia offering vacation training for as short as one week to as long as three months.
Vacation-goers are getting the most bang for their buck too, as they can learn various techniques from some of the world’s best fighters and coaches, get into tip-top shape through a number of strength and conditioning programs, and explore their cultural surroundings. For anyone with an interest in fitness and travel, this truly sounds like heaven.
There are many gyms offering quality training and incredible packages, but here are the top four training vacation spots around the region.
Situated on the gorgeous island oasis of Singapore, the heavy hitters at this elite facility work hard and play hard, and it shows.
Evolve is home to numerous world champions across several disciplines of MMA and martial arts, including ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion Angela Lee, ONE Welterweight World Champion Ben Askren.
Under the careful guidance of expert instructors the likes of former Olympian Heath Sims and scores of Muay Thai, boxing, and BJJ world champions, Evolve has emerged as not only one of the top camps in Asia, but the entire world. In fact, simply getting a chance to train here is automatic bragging rights.
There is an abundance of hotels catering to varying budgets within walking distance of their three outlets, and when you’re not working hard on improving your skills, you can unwind in one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world. That sounds like the perfect mix of training and vacation.
Tiger Muay Thai & MMA provides top-notch coaching, a tropical escape, and a sense of camaraderie for anyone who has trained there. Based in Phuket, Thailand, this camp offers intensive training in Muay Thai from a bevy of Krus (instructors), as well as programs for BJJ, MMA, and various exotic martial arts such as Krabi Krabong. There are also several different types of fitness boot camps to choose from.
Some classes are even held on the beach set against the sun and sea. Just the thought of getting in a quality workout and learning techniques with the sand beneath your feet sounds incredible already.
In addition to on-site rooms and bungalow accommodations within a five-minute walking distance, the gym boasts its very own eatery called the Tiger Grill & Restaurant, making it a one-stop destination.
Bali MMA is billed as “world-class training in paradise”, and that is exactly what people are going to get if they spend a little bit of time at this tropical Indonesian retreat.
With instructors such as multi-time BJJ medalist and ONE Championship Flyweight contender Andrew Leone, Malaysian MMA and ONE stars Gianni and Keanu Subba, and Muay Thai prodigy Tiffany “Time Bomb” Van Soest, people are getting the chance to train alongside experts who are currently rising to the top of their respective martial arts scenes.
That, within itself, is inspiring. In addition, the camp’s facility offers on-site accommodations in the form of fully-furnished houses and single-room suites.
Also, Bali MMA is situated in the surfing capital of the world, so when you’re done grappling or hitting the heavy bag, you can take your board to one of the city’s gorgeous beaches. Or you could just explore Bali’s luscious rain forests and maybe hike the volcanic mountains.
Randy Couture, Dan Henderson, and Matt Lindland’s little Oregon gym has blossomed into an international juggernaut. Though the fight camp is famed for its Portland and Temecula locations, its Thailand location in the culturally vibrant city of Chiang Mai is in a class of its own.
Not only does the Chiang Mai location have a rich tradition of Thai kickboxing, but it also has a stellar BJJ program and, as customary with Team Quest, it is a leader in the Asian wrestling scene. Just look at Northern Muay Thai champion Pongsiri Mitsatit, who displays an excellent all-round game competing in ONE Championship.
Also, there is a community atmosphere, as both the fighters and students live, eat, and sleep on the gym’s campus, so there should be ample time to bond and learn, if you choose to do so.