From Novice to Pro: Singapore’s Top MMA Gyms to Elevate Your Game

September 17, 2023
From: Spartacus
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The shimmering skyline of Singapore isn’t just a testament to its economic prowess, but also to its rising prominence in the realm of mixed martial arts (MMA). As this island city-state cements its place on the global map, it’s not just the world of finance and technology that’s witnessing a boom, but also the world of combat sports.

From ancient martial disciplines to modern MMA techniques, Singapore’s transformation into a combat sports hub has been nothing short of spectacular. This article takes you on a journey through the top 10 MMA gyms in Singapore, providing an insightful lens into the nation’s burgeoning MMA culture.

#1 Evolve MMA

Evolve MMA is not just a gym; it’s an institution. Established as Asia’s premier martial arts gym, it has carved its name into the echelons of world-class training facilities. With four strategically located centres across Singapore, Evolve has become synonymous with excellence in MMA training. “Unleash Your Greatness” is not just a motto but the core philosophy that governs Evolve’s training programs. Catering to both novices and professionals, the gym’s curriculum aims to tap into each individual’s latent potential.

The gym boasts a stellar lineup of fighters who have trained there, including ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion Angela Lee, ONE Strawweight World Champion Alex Silva , and former ONE Lightweight World Champion Shinya Aoki. The list extends to UFC stars like Rafael dos Anjos and Dan Henderson.

From top-of-the-line sparring rings to cutting-edge fitness equipment, Evolve’s facilities leave no room for compromise. Each of their locations, including Far East Square, Orchard Central, Clarke Quay Central, and Kinex, mirrors this commitment to quality.

What sets Evolve apart is its star-studded coaching panel comprising Muay Thai, boxing, and BJJ world champions. They bring not just skill, but also years of experience in moulding champions. Evolve proudly holds the title of being Asia’s only MMA academy with “the most number of world champions,” further solidifying its reputation.

With four prime locations across Singapore and a complimentary 30-minute introductory class for newcomers, accessibility is evidently a priority for Evolve. Evolve offers specialised programs that accommodate all levels of fighters, from beginners to those looking to compete at the highest levels.

#2 Juggernaut Fight Club

Founded by Singapore’s martial arts pioneer Arvind Lalwani, Juggernaut Fight Club has rapidly become a hotbed for emerging talent in the city-state. While not as internationally renowned as Evolve, Juggernaut has produced a plethora of homegrown champions across multiple disciplines, contributing significantly to Singapore’s growing MMA landscape.

Arvind “The Juggernaut” Lalwani emphasises comprehensive combat training, focusing not just on skill but also on mental fortitude. Led by Lalwani, who has been a luminary in Singapore’s boxing world since 2000, the coaching staff is replete with experienced instructors across various disciplines. Lalwani’s long list of accolades, including being the 2000 National Heavyweight Boxing Champion, speaks volumes about the gym’s pedigree.

Juggernaut’s facility isn’t just a gym; it’s a combat sports complex offering everything from boxing rings to specialised areas for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Muay Thai. Located centrally, Juggernaut Fight Club is accessible and even offers drop-in rates starting at $35 for those looking to get a taste of their offerings. Tailored to suit the needs of different fighters, the gym offers a range of packages. You can opt for an all-access package or specialise in two combat sports of your choice.

#3 Impact MMA

The story of Impact begins in 2010, when Singaporean MMA pioneers Bruce Loh and Royston Wee decided to fill a gap in the market: high-quality, yet affordable MMA training. Bruce Loh, with two decades of teaching experience, leads a cadre of trainers who are experts in their respective fields.

The gym claims UFC fighter Royston Wee as one of its homegrown talents, the first and only Singaporean fighter to make it big in the UFC. Another emerging star is Niko Soe, who is making waves in ONE Championship.

Impact MMA isn’t just about throwing punches and kicks; it’s about developing well-rounded fighters. From BJJ to Muay Thai, sanshou to boxing, the curriculum is as varied as it is intense. While some gyms might tout their high-end amenities, Impact keeps it straightforward. The focus here is on quality training rather than flashy interiors, but that doesn’t mean they compromise on equipment or safety.

Year after year, Impact’s fighters are a common sight on the podiums of regional martial arts tournaments, cementing the gym’s reputation for excellence. Accessibility is key at Impact; the environment is family-friendly and welcomes aspiring fighters from all walks of life.

#4 Onyx MMA

Onyx MMA has carved out a unique niche in Singapore’s burgeoning MMA scene, elevating it to more than just a training facility. Specialising in a broad range of martial arts styles, Onyx has a philosophy that goes beyond just fight preparation. The gym emphasises the development of its community members in a more holistic sense, not just physically but emotionally and mentally as well. This community-driven approach to training sets Onyx apart in a competitive landscape and has earned it a reputation as a nurturing ground for both new and experienced fighters.

One can’t discuss Onyx MMA without mentioning some of the top-tier talent the gym has produced. Notable among them is Eddie Ng, a name that has resounded through the ONE Championship circuits. His success is emblematic of Onyx’s ability to cultivate talents who can perform at the highest levels of the sport. But Ng isn’t the sole shining star; 

Onyx has become a magnet for emerging and seasoned talents from both local and international circuits. They come to experience an eclectic and carefully-curated training program, emphasising that every move is a step in a martial artist’s broader journey. In essence, Onyx MMA serves as a movement that redefines the very notion of what a martial arts dojo can be.

#5 The Jungle MMA

Turning to The Jungle MMA, the gym stands as a beacon for specialised, high-level training in martial arts. While its foundations lie in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Muay Thai, the gym has branched out to offer a comprehensive and cutting-edge MMA program. The Jungle is renowned for its meticulous attention to detail, focusing not just on technical skills but also on mental fortitude. It’s a place where training is twofold: honing physical skills while instilling a mindset suitable for the rigours of competitive fighting.

One of the notable fighters who have trained at The Jungle is Benedict Ang, a rising star in the ONE Championship. His technical prowess and mental resilience are a direct result of the high-quality training at The Jungle. What sets this gym apart, however, is its dual approach to martial arts: each drill, each sparring session, and each lesson is designed to develop both the physical and mental aspects of fighting. 

This focus on both technique and spirit has made The Jungle a go-to training ground for aspirants aiming for the summit of MMA achievement, whether at the regional or international stages. This holistic approach to training has made The Jungle MMA not just a gym, but a powerhouse for creating world-class fighters.

#6 Kapap Academy 

Not your average MMA gym, Kapap Academy distinguishes itself with a strong foundational focus on self-defence techniques. Its programs are designed to be inclusive, catering to students from all walks of life and skill levels. Originating from a diverse array of combat disciplines including Krav Maga and Kapap — the hand-to-hand combat system of the Israeli special forces — the academy’s offerings are holistic, covering everything from striking to grappling to disarming techniques. 

Don’t let its self-defence focus fool you, though; Kapap Academy is no slouch when it comes to competitive MMA training. From weekend warriors to professionals, the gym has something for everyone, and its MMA classes are designed to cultivate versatile and well-rounded fighters. The gym’s reputation for excellence has made it a go-to spot for accomplished martial artists and combat sports athletes looking to diversify their skill sets.

Some of the big names who’ve spent time honing their craft at Kapap include Jake Butler and Stephen Langdown, both of whom have showcased their talents in the ONE Championship cage. What sets Kapap Academy apart is not only its top-notch training but also its insistence on embedding discipline, respect, and life-saving skills into its curriculum. While Butler and Langdown may have come for the high-level MMA training, they also walked away with a broader understanding of martial arts as both sport and life skill. 

So whether you’re interested in learning self-defence, seeking comprehensive MMA training, or aiming for the competitive heights reached by Butler and Langdown, Kapap Academy in Singapore stands out as a unique and compelling choice for anyone on the martial arts journey.

#7 Trifecta Martial Arts

Trifecta Martial Arts not only focuses on developing its fighters but also invests in building a robust and supportive community. The gym offers an eclectic blend of martial arts training, from Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to Muay Thai and MMA. With its centrally located facility, it’s easily accessible for both residents and visitors looking to sharpen their martial arts skills.

Prominent fighters who have walked through its doors include Angela Lee, a ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion, and her brother, Christian Lee, who is a ONE Lightweight World Champion.

Unlike other gyms that lean heavily into one particular style, Trifecta believes in a balanced approach, enabling fighters to be well-rounded in different forms of combat. Trifecta Martial Arts is a state-of-the-art facility, offering advanced training equipment and dedicated spaces for different martial arts.

The staff are not just trainers; they are mentors who emphasise character-building along with skill development. Several of Trifecta’s fighters have taken home trophies from regional and international competitions, further solidifying the gym’s reputation.

#8 BXG Boxing & Fitness

While BXG Boxing & Fitness might initially come off as a boxing-centric gym, it has a blossoming MMA department that attracts both novice and experienced fighters. The gym is conveniently located, offering easy access for those looking to engage in rigorous yet highly tailored MMA training.

BXG offers highly specialised training regimens that touch upon everything from striking to ground game, often incorporating boxing techniques into MMA training. Headed by renowned boxing coaches, the MMA team also receives insights from boxing fundamentals, offering a unique perspective for MMA training.

Top fighters like Rafi Majid, a former WBC Asia Continental champion, have been spotted sharpening their MMA skills here. BXG has a modern facility with a spacious boxing ring, a designated area for MMA, and high-end training equipment. Several BXG trainees have made their mark in regional MMA events, contributing to the gym’s growing list of achievements.

#9 Stronghold MMA

Stronghold MMA distinguishes itself by being led by a husband-and-wife team, Lukas Leasure and Charmaine Leasure, both of whom bring a wealth of knowledge in various combat sports. They’ve broken new ground by offering one of Singapore’s only kids’ MMA programs for children aged 5 and above, ensuring the next generation is ready to step into the ring.

The gym uses a “university method” for teaching. What does this mean? Individual attention to each student, tracking their fitness levels and skill progression closely. Both Lukas and Charmaine have extensive backgrounds in teaching MMA, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Muay Thai, offering a rich tapestry of martial arts disciplines under one roof.

#10 Fight G Academy

Rooted in history, Fight G Academy is Singapore’s first martial arts gym, established by Darren “Senz” de Silva, a legend with over three decades in martial arts and two decades in coaching. The gym has been a production line of exceptional talent, pushing fighters not just into the regional circuits but onto the world stage of ONE Championship.

Darren de Silva isn’t just the founder; he’s the heart and soul of the gym. His two decades of coaching have shaped the gym’s training methods and philosophies. Fight G Academy is not one to rest on its laurels; it continually aims to up the ante by making sure its fighters excel on both regional and global stages.

Hard-style competitive training is the name of the game here. Prepare to be pushed to your limits as Fight G Academy leaves no room for half-measures. Fight G Academy has more than just a training area; it’s a temple for fighters who are serious about the game.

Conclusion

The ascent of MMA in Singapore has been both rapid and remarkable. As new talents emerge and world-class gyms proliferate, the island nation promises to be an epicentre of combat sports in the years to come. For those passionate about MMA, whether as fighters or fans, Spartacus serves as the go-to platform. Offering a plethora of content from live TV and PPVs to ‘kicks’ – their own spin on short, engaging combat sports videos – Spartacus ensures that you’re always in the heart of the action. Additionally, their comprehensive blog provides invaluable tips and insights, catering to both fighters and aficionados. As Singapore’s MMA scene continues to flourish, Spartacus stands as the ultimate companion for every MMA journey.

FAQs

What makes Evolve MMA stand out among other MMA gyms in Singapore?

Evolve MMA distinguishes itself by housing an unparalleled roster of world champion instructors across various disciplines such as Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and MMA. The facility is also state-of-the-art, offering world-class amenities that serve not just fighters but also fitness enthusiasts. Its corporate partnerships and career pathways for fighters make it more than a gym; it’s a hub for the development of elite martial artists.

How does Juggernaut Fight Club contribute to Singapore’s growing MMA landscape?

This establishment contributes to Singapore’s burgeoning MMA scene by focusing on a holistic development of fighters. Through a meticulously designed curriculum and a stable of experienced coaches, Juggernaut not only hones combat skills but also emphasises mental fortitude and strategic acumen, making its fighters well-rounded and versatile.

What is unique about Impact MMA’s approach to training?

Impact MMA takes a unique, analytical approach to training, blending traditional techniques with modern biomechanics and sports science. Their curriculum is dynamic, evolving with the sport, ensuring that fighters are always ahead of the curve in terms of technique and strategy.

Can you tell me more about Onyx MMA’s community-driven approach to martial arts?

Onyx takes a community-driven approach, fostering an atmosphere of mutual respect and camaraderie. Members don’t just come to train; they come to belong to a larger social fabric that promotes self-improvement through collective effort.

What distinguishes The Jungle MMA’s training programs from others?

Their programs are built on a multi-disciplinary approach, offering not just MMA but also fitness programs that cater to different goals—be it weight loss, muscle gain, or agility training. This makes their offerings expansive, catering to a broader spectrum of individuals.

How does Kapap Academy integrate self-defence into its MMA training?

Kapap Academy seamlessly integrates self-defence tactics into their MMA training, creating a curriculum that is not just sport-oriented but also practical for real-world scenarios. They focus on situational awareness, de-escalation techniques, and adaptable fighting skills.

What does Trifecta Martial Arts focus on in addition to combat skills?

In addition to combat skills, Trifecta places a strong emphasis on character building. They incorporate lessons on ethics, sportsmanship, and mental resilience, aiming to develop not just fighters, but well-rounded individuals.

What unique perspective does BXG Boxing & Fitness bring to MMA training?

BXG brings a pugilistic emphasis to MMA training, focusing on the fine art of striking. They blend traditional boxing techniques with Muay Thai and other disciplines, offering a strikingly different—pun intended—approach to MMA.

How does Stronghold MMA cater to younger audiences?

Catering to younger audiences, Stronghold MMA offers specialised classes for children and teenagers, instilling the love for the sport at an early age. Their programs are designed to be fun yet challenging, making martial arts accessible without compromising on rigour.

What sets Fight G Academy apart as Singapore’s first martial arts gym?

As Singapore’s first martial arts gym, Fight G Academy sets itself apart through its legacy and heritage. They are the torchbearers of Singapore’s martial arts history and continue to shape its future by offering a comprehensive range of disciplines and training methods.

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