I have heard of BJJ classes or scraps on the beaches of Rio de Janeiro and have seen photos of the Gracies setting up mats in a park that overlook the oceans. I haven’t had the chance to partake in those experiences, but I did get the chance to visit a gym that backs up to the world famous Patong Beach in Phuket, Thailand. Maximum Fitness Combat Centeris located right on the edge of the beach, so you can literally finish up class and then cool down with a swim in the Indian Ocean in just a few minutes. Here is a video I shot of a walk I did from the training area of the gym to the beach.
MFCC is an all-inclusive fitness and MMA gym that offers a large, air-conditioned weight room with free weights, Hammer Strength equipment, various machines and cardio equipment. The gym also includes a yoga room with a view of the beach and large MMA training space. The MMA training space is not air conditioned (which I like), so it is very easy to warm up and stay warm in the hot and humid climate of Phuket. The MMA space includes four rings, bag area, and a BJJ mat space.
I took the weekday 4 PM NoGi classes which runs for 90 minutes and includes a warm up, technique and 30-minutes of rolling. The class ends with roughly 5 to 10 minutes of abdominal conditioning drills. The one-day drop-in fee is 400 bahts, which is roughly $11 to $12 USD. There are also 3-day and 10-day options available for BJJ addicts on vacation.The coaches and students are all very friendly and welcoming. If you happen to be in Patong Beach, definitely drop by MFCC for BJJ, MMA, Muay Thai, Yoga, or to just pump some iron. Afterwards, you can hit up the juice bar, tattoo parlor, street food stands, or the beach that are all adjacent to the gym.