By Paul Winter


Iron Legion has never been about creating a cookie cutter environment, or being “just another gym.”

Like it says on our website:

The combination of effective programs, supportive leadership, and steadfast comradery is the key to our clan’s results.

Our members are not just members.

They are part of something greater — they are part of the family of warriors and athletes that is Iron Legion.

What makes us different is that we believe the lone wolf mythology is bullshit- lone wolves die alone in the woods.

Our pack brings stability, strength, and resistance.

Bold words that we are confident about the reality of, as we have put them to the test, again and again.

Another major aspect of our forward march has been initiating the Iron Legion Jiu Jitsu program, turning our place of power into not only somewhere an individual can become strong, conditioned, and athletic-

But providing them with the effective tools necessary to embrace the real warrior lifestyle.

We’ve all seen the shirts, the memes, the slogans- a weightlifter is picking up a barbell, and there is a line equating what he’s doing with being a warrior.

But weightlifting isn’t fighting- it provides a different kind of value, which we discussed in THIS ARTICLE.

Strength training informs our other abilities- otherwise it’s just strength for…well, strength.

Here at Iron Legion, we definitely believe that being strong for it’s own sake is still a damn good reason, but part of bringing high-level combat training to you, our family, and to the Ocala area, is about going further.

What is all that power for?

In any tribal structure, there is a difference between the family units that made up the greater community, and the warrior class.

And maybe that’s a good way to explain what Iron Legion is trying to do:

Create an environment in which one can truly go beyond being a member of the wider family of Iron Legion, and work to become part of that warrior class.

We live in a world that can change at the drop of a hat from safe and unassuming to harsh and brutal.

A routine trip to the gas station has the potential to turn into a nightmare for the unprepared, the untrained, the unmotivated.

There’s plenty of reasons to train Jiu Jitsu for the sport aspect, but at its core, grappling remains the oldest system of warfare between humans- it focuses on distance control, positional dominance, and choking or breaking movements to dismantle opponents.

Detractors will continually claim that Jiu Jitsu is merely a sport martial art, and not effective for street application, but this is simply not true.

Sport Jiu Jitsu (an important distinction) is not suitable for street application, but grappling itself is a highly functional and valuable skill to dominate a physical engagement.

There are other reasons to train Jiu Jitsu beside the simple fact that a human being should know how to handle themselves in a violent confrontation:

It improves brain function, especially memory management tasks and coordination- meaning Jiu Jitsu makes you more effective off the mats as well, in your daily life, your business interactions, and so on.

It increases mental toughness.

Persevering through a difficult round, remaining calm in stressful situations, and realizing you’re not made of glass and are tougher in many ways than you think you are is a great thing.

It increases confidence, well-being, and helps you manage anxiety and depression- there are more scientific research papers on the benefits of martial arts and exercise on the overall sense of mental health than you can shake an armbar at.

If you need any other reason to start training Jiu Jitsu at Iron Legion, here’s a final one:

In any group of individuals placed into a worst-case scenario, the ones who can’t fight are ultimately a liability to the ones who can.

Are you a liability or an asset?

Make sure.