Discover the thrilling world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at Body Armor MMA. Experience the physical, mental, and social benefits of training in this combat sport.
|Body Armor MMA has been serving the residents of north central West Virginia in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for a decade.
|The gym offers classes for children as young as four and adults up to 48 years old.
|Gym owner Chad Marsh opened Body Armor MMA due to the lack of a local gym.
|The gym has a positive impact on the community, providing self-confidence, self-defense skills, and body positivity.
|Body Armor MMA participates in tournaments, with recent success in the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Pan American Championship.
|The gym focuses solely on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and offers a safe environment for all to learn and have fun.
For a decade, Body Armor MMA has been serving the residents of north central West Virginia in the sport of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. From the Little Warriors class with children as young as four to the adult classes with ages up to 48, the gym serves a multitude of people with different backgrounds and acts as a family environment.
The Journey of Body Armor MMA
Gym owner and first-degree black belt Chad Marsh said he decided to open Body Armor MMA because there was not a local gym. “When I started training, I had to travel 45 minutes twice a day to train. The closest place was in Bridgeport, and my friends couldn’t do that, so I just went ahead and opened my own.” The gym found its new home on Vicksburg Road after spending years located on Main Street. Marsh said this is because of the growth of interest in jiu jitsu. “We really just kept growing, so we found a bigger place to go. We definitely have more room and can accommodate large class sizes.”
The Impact on the Community
Marsh said the gym has a positive impact on the community. “I think the gym gives people the opportunity to try a combat sport and allows them to see some positive changes in themselves. Some of the biggest factors of training jiu jitsu can be increased self-confidence, self-defense skills, and body positivity. We’ve also found that it allows for the kids to be more social with one another. So, really, there are physical, mental, and social benefits all around.”
Tournaments and Achievements
Body Armor MMA participates in tournaments, with the most recent being the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Pan American Championship, or better known as Pan Ams. “The Pan American Games is the second-largest tournament in the United States, and it’s an international tournament. At the tournament, our kids’ coach Becca Marsh placed first in her division, and one of our other coaches, James Jamison, took third in his division.”
The Gym’s Philosophy
Marsh said he does hold self-defense seminars, but he emphasizes that to keep the self-defense skills one should continue to train. “All our classes here are self-defense, but I also do three-hour seminars for different groups. I always stress that they should continue to train because those skills slip away easily. It shouldn’t be a one-time thing.” Marsh described the gym as “one big family.”
Focus on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Marsh also explained that when the gym opened in 2013, MMA (mixed-martial arts) training was available, but the sole focus is now on jiu jitsu. “Initially, we did fight MMA, but then we started to focus more on jiu jitsu. I think when people see ‘MMA,’ they can be intimidated, but we welcome anyone to come to the gym and try out jiu jitsu for themselves. We keep a safe environment, though accidents do happen, and we learn and have fun. Jiu jitsu can help someone in everyday life, and we teach them the sport.”