I have been training for two months in Pennsylvania and was in Lake Norman, NC for a weekend getaway. I called ahead to see if I could train at the gym. Laurie called me back and said that would be fine. I arrived ahead of time to get the lay of the land and stretch out, and the kids’ class was wrapping up. The kids were having a great time, laughing, and also clearly had a good rapport with the instructors – good sign.
I was warmly greeted by Mike and Renard, then Laurie. My class focused on several things: grappling, breaking grips, and, interestingly, remediation of weaknesses of people in the class. The methods were unconventional (close your eyes???) but VERY helpful (close your eyes and use your other senses to anticipate what’s next). The other students were great to roll with – knowledgeable, patient, and good-natured. I think the spirit of a gym starts with the people who run it, and it’s clear that a focus on helping each other is key here. I learned a LOT in the two hours I was there, and I suspect it would be a great place to train daily.
If you’re thinking about training at a BJJ gym, and want a place you can learn AND have fun, I recommend a visit to the gym. And, if you’re looking for something for your kids, I’d recommend stopping here, too!