Among the various businesses shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic, MMA gyms are non-operational, but that doesn’t mean that the teaching, learning, and training stops.
Among those keeping his students and fighters alike going as best he can is Factory X’s Marc Montoya. A former fighter himself, Montoya has taken his teachings online in hopes of keeping everyone at his gym going, motivated, and ready to get back to action when permitted.
“As a coach it’s important to make sure our students and fighters are taken care of, and that’s one way to combat the unknown and some of the anxiety if you will,” Montoya told MMAWeekly.com.
“Everything’s had to change and we’ve had to shift gears. I have faith in our gym. I have faith in our fighters and students. And obviously I have my own faith in God. Fear is a lack of faith, so I’m not going to go down that road. I’m just going to be thankful for today. We’re going to maximize what we can do today, and just move forward.”
And what Montoya has done has been to utilize the internet and use video as a teaching tool so that those under his tutelage can keep their training up as best they can during the age of social distancing.
“What we’ve done is gone online and filmed a bunch of content at the gym ourselves that our students can do and fighters can do from their own homes,” said Montoya. “It’s second best to being one-on-one with each other in the gym, but it’s an alternative to stay active.
“We’re encouraging them to not only physically do that stuff at home, but advance their mental skill level as well. Whether that’s looking at (and studying) fights online or go and reading some books, that’s something that is really important. Gaining mental knowledge is just as important as physical knowledge.”
Montoya knows that when things start to pick back up for MMA, fighters have to be ready as a multitude of shows at all levels of the sport will be looking to field as many fights as they can in short order.
“You’ve got to stay ready now,” Montoya said. “As their cardio and their weight is where it needs to be, they’re ready. These kids know how to fight. The kids who get the opportunity here in the near future are the kids who stay ready.
“I think some of these kids will realize how much they really love what they’re doing. And I think some of them will realize or will be pondering if this is really what they want to do. This time down gives you the time to really focus on a lot of things and how much you love doing what you’re doing.”
For Montoya, maintaining positivity and making the best of the situation is how he chooses to approach things, and if some good can come out of the lockdown, he’ll take it.
“I’ve always wanted to build a video vault of content,” said Montoya. “It’s really hard with my schedule normally, so I’ve had a lot of opportunity to work on that.
“I’ve said many times you’ve got to make lemonade out of lemons, and this will pass. You have to be able to look at this thing and see how we can grow and benefit from it.”