Mixed Martial Arts in High School

Harry Dalian MMA

In a small town in Massachusetts, the local high school offers Mixed Martial Arts as a club for it’s students. It all began with a senior at Winchester high school who began campaigning for the program since he was a freshman. In-Goo Kwak has had a passion for MMA since he was a child and wanted to create an outlet for students who weren’t necessarily interested in traditional sports. After much deliberation from the school board, he MMA club at Winchester high school has nearly two dozen participants today.

At a recent class, Kwak arranged for a guest instructor to come in and offer some inspiration as well as world-class MMA skills. Marcelo Siquiera, a martial arts center owner and manager in nearby Somerville, was a national karate campion in Brazil. He has a black belt in Brazilian Jujitsu and studied at the famous Chute Boxe mixed martial arts academy in Curitiba, Brazil.

“A lot of people think it’s too aggressive or violent,” Says Siquiera. “But after a while, they see different perspective.

He says that the club offers an opportunity for a healthy aggression output for students, in a safe environment designed just for that. Siquiera spoke passionate about the self-discipline and strength involved with being a fighter.

In the early 1990s, mixed martial arts as illegal in nearly every state in the country. Today, things prove to be a little bit different as it is now considered an arena for serious athletes. In order to succeed, a fighter must be smiled in four seaprate combat sports – boxing, kick-boxing, wrestling, and submission grappling – and be able to pull technique from each discipline.

With a main goal of starting the MMA club at his high school, Kwak wanted to offer something to students who were not “the jocks who dominate traditional sports.”
His goal was also to create a Mixed Martial Arts community of clubs to have other clubs to compete with.

Kwok plans to stay involved even after he graduates, as the potential is there for the community he always dreamed of.