By Jack Schwada and Brianna Sommer
After finishing with a regimen of sit-ups, push-ups and pull-ups, Ryan Wilson â09 goes to the back of his house where he starts working on his black Everlast punching bag. This is his schedule the three days of the week when he is not training for several hours at the Beverly Hills Jiu Jitsu Gym, under sen sai Marcus Vinicius. Vinicius holds a fourth degree black belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu and a second degree black belt in Judo.
Wilson became involved in martial arts and fighting when he was 10 years old. He started off training in jiu jitsu but later began training in mixed martial arts, which encompasses several martial arts. Mixed martial arts are more focused around a realistic fight and effective forms of self defense.
Wilson began learning mixed martial arts as it is a very realistic combat sport.
Wilsonâs fighting style is based in a type of mixed martial arts called Chute Boxing, also known as Muy Thai or Vale Tudo, which translated from Portuguese means âanything goes.â This form of mixed martial arts includes punching, kicking, kneeing, elbowing, taking down and choking.
Chute Boxing originated in Brazil, the current location of the Chute Box Academy. It includes a type of martial art called Brazilian jiu jitsu, a martial art separate from standard jiu jitsu.
This variety of available attacks is essential to a successful fighting style.
âA successful fighter must know all four [styles of fighting] to have a chance at winning,â says Wilson.
As opposed to spending years training for one specific kind of fighting, such as boxing or wrestling, which limits Wilsonâs capabilities, he is learning all different kinds of effective fighting which helps him defend himself in a real-life scenario. Mixed martial arts is constantly evolving to what techniques are effective in todayâs fighting situations, Wilson said.
Wilson has attended many competitions such as the American National Competition, where he defeated the former champion of the competition who was heavily favored.
âIt was the hardest and most tiring fight of my life, but in the end, having my hand raised was worth it all,â Wilson says. Mixed martial arts is both a mental and physical competition, giving
Wilson a sense of control, accomplishment and confidence.
Mixed martial arts has become more popular throughout the United States, Brazil and Japan with many leagues such as UFC, Pride and Affliction. Contending in these competitions is like the finals of any sport. Athletes train for months in advance of the competition for the one chance to win and prove themselves.
Although Wilson cannot yet legally fight in mixed martial arts tournaments until he turns 18, he plans to enter a mixed martial arts league in the 155-lb junior division once he turns 18. Until then, he continues to train in all of the necessary forms of jiu jitsu, Muy Thai, boxing and wrestling outside of the school arena.