Beginners Martial Arts Classes: What to expect on your first night

Whether you’re an absolute newbie, have a previous martial arts background or did some training as a kid and now looking to get back into it.  Here are 3 things you need to know when you’re looking to start a new martial art.

  • 1 Get Started

    “Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action.”

    —Benjamin Disraeli

    The key to starting any new activity, especially beginner martial arts classes, is ‘Action’.  Without taking action, you will forever be asking yourself ‘what if?’  Trying to figure out what martial arts is best for you will involve a little trial and error.  Finding the best fit for you will no doubt involve trying out several different beginner martial arts classes as you weigh up the pros and cons of each style.  Don’t worry though, ‘gym shopping’ is fairly common nowadays and it’s generally understood that people are researching different gyms before committing to join.

    Before you start visiting different gyms, it’s always a good idea to figure out what your goals are.  Do you want to learn self defense skills? Are you looking to start a new sport? Do you want to improve your fitness? Is community important to you when joining a gym? These are just some of the questions that you should ask yourself before venturing off and checking out the various types of martial arts classes in your area.  


  • 2 What to bring

    What do beginner martial arts classes involve and what do you need to bring? Different styles of martial arts will require different uniforms for training.  You won’t have to worry about this too much though.  Most gyms will welcome you through their doors provided you are wearing clean active wear.  Loose clothing can be a bit of a problem so wear something that won’t cause any hazards.  A water bottle and a clean towel is also a good idea for your first visit.  We’d also recommend bringing a clean change of clothes for after class in case you really get put to work.  Here at TFC, we don’t allow shoes on the mats, which is pretty universal as far as gym etiquette goes for Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (and other martial arts).  The only exception we make is for our boxing sessions where we allow clean boxing shoes to be worn on the mats.  If you want to read more about the do’s and don’ts for martial arts gyms click here.

    If you’re searching for martial art classes Logan or the surrounding areas, you’re more than welcome to drop in for a free trial in Muay Thai, Boxing or BJJ here at TFC.  We’re big believers in helping people figure out what martial arts is best for them and take pride in providing a professional and clean training environment for you to discover the different styles.  After you’ve booked yourself in online, just check in at the front desk and you’re ready to go!

  • 3 What to expect

    If you’ve walked into a facility like ours that offer different styles of martial arts in the one location, chances are there’ll be slightly different vibes for each class.  The etiquette around greeting, warming up and drilling can differ from style to style.  Instructors will generally walk you through some of the finer details but here are a few pointers that we can offer when taking beginner martial arts classes.

  • Beginners Boxing

    Boxing is an effective martial art that specialises in throwing punches to the head and body.  It’s also grown to become one of the most recognisable professional combat sports around the world.  The beauty of boxing lies in its simplicity which makes it perfect for beginners who don’t have a lot of experience in martial arts.  Beginning boxing doesn’t require much gear.  Essentially, all you’ll need are clean, comfortable clothes such as a shirt and shorts or leggings. Most gyms will loan you a pair of gloves for your first class but if you already have a pair, bring them along.  As mentioned above, at TFC you wont need your shoes on the mats unless they’re boxing boots.  Mouthguards and head gear are only required for sparring so you’ll only need those when you’re at an advanced level or preparing for competition.  Advanced and ‘Fighters’ classes are offered separate to the general boxing classes so for now, clean clothes, a towel and a good attitude is plenty to get you started.  And lastly, don’t forget your water bottle!

  • Beginners Muay Thai

    Muay Thai is a beautiful martial art originating in Thailand that is still heavily attached to its culture.  Also known as ‘The Art of 8 Limbs’, the rituals and ceremonies ingrained in Muay Thai make it as much a cultural display as it is a system of combat.  Beginning Muay Thai can understandably be a bit intimidating.  With so many weapons at your disposal ie. fists, feet, knees, elbows, clinching and sweeps, it can be a long journey before you master all of these tools.  At the beginning of your journey however, you’ll only be expected to be learning the basic techniques such as the jab, cross and round kicks.  These will be enough to get you started as you slowly build up the conditioning and coordination that practicing Muay Thai demands.  Much like boxing, Muay Thai training requires clean, well fitted clothes that are comfortable to train in.  Bear in mind that you’ll be performing kicks so make sure your shorts don’t restrict any movement.  Wearing shoes won’t be needed while practicing Muay Thai as kicking is a large part of the training.  Similar to boxing, most Muay Thai gyms will lend you gloves for your first session so that you’re able to get stuck into it straight away.  Hand wraps and shin guards can come later once you’ve committed to the class.  You’ll also need mouth guards for sparring later when you’ve joined the advanced or fighters classes.  For your very first day however, just a water bottle, some clean clothes, a towel and possibly some clothes to change into after class will do.

  • Beginners BJJ Gi and No Gi

    Brazilian Jiu Jitsu became a dominant force in the martial arts world as it helped spearhead the UFC’s popularity in the early 90’s.  With the emphasis on ground fighting, modern BJJ now embodies two forms, ‘Gi’ and ‘No-gi’.  The ‘Gi’ is how BJJ was originally practiced, by wearing a ‘Kimono’.  It’s not too different from a Karate uniform with the main difference being a BJJ Gi is much thicker to accommodate the gripping.  In ‘No-gi’, practitioners train in tight fitted tops known as rashguards and grappling shorts that look a lot like board shorts.  With the emphasis on grappling, there are no strikes allowed in BJJ so gloves are not necessary.  

    If you’re trying out a BJJ Gi class for the first time, you likely won’t have to wear a Gi so wear some clean, comfortable clothes.  Because you’ll be up close and personal with your training partners, it’s recommended that you don’t wear anything with zips, buttons or anything that can scratch or get caught on people.  Be aware though that some BJJ gyms will require a Gi even for your first session.  

    For your first ‘No-gi’ class, you’ll just need some well fitted, clean clothes to train in.  Similar to the Gi class, make sure your clothes don’t have any accessories that could get caught or cause harm to your training partners. 


    It’s highly recommended that you bring a clean change of clothes as BJJ requires lots of contact with the mat and other people.  There’ll likely be lots of sweat exchanged so make sure you bring a water bottle and a fresh towel as well!  


    Tip: You’ll find that most of your training partners remembered what it was like on their first day so they’re more than happy to help you through yours.  Make sure you thank them at the end!

  • Fitting in

    Starting at any new gym can be a bit daunting, so training with people who are around your level is important to keep things interesting. This is why martial arts gyms will generally offer intermediate classes and competition classes (we call them ‘Fighters’ classes at TFC) separate from the beginner martial arts classes.  This way you are always training with people with similar abilities as your skills progress.  Here’s an example of how a gym might schedule their classes to cater to the various levels.

  • Final thoughts

    If you’re new to martial arts and interested in exploring different styles like Boxing, Muay Thai or BJJ, then we couldn’t be more excited for you!  Regardless of what style you choose, learning a new martial art is a great way to learn some self defense skills, keep fit, activate the brain and most importantly, have some fun!  You’ll be joining a community of like minded people and make friendships that will last a lifetime. You don’t have to be training to be a world champion to achieve your goals.  You just need to be open to new experiences, have a can-do attitude and a willingness to take action!