Why MMA gyms are more focused on ground?



I think for two reasons. First is that many coaches themselves come from a grappling and ground fighting background and are more comfortable with that and teaching it. I have actually seen some MMA coaches that did not know how to throw a jab for instance and teach or impart that to others that they were training. Obviously those are substandard but they do exist. Secondly is that the grappling and especially the ground aspects are harder for many to learn. Their usual frame of reference is from a stand-up and what they are familiar with and most are also used to being able to visually see what they are doing as they do it. In the ground aspect that is not the case as much and instead you learn to rely on your touch and the feel of things and visualizing it in your mind as you do it rather than actually being able to see it as you do it or entirely seeing it. Many struggle with that initially and so that also I think is why you see many gyms focus on the ground aspects of MMA while leaving the stand-up aspects of kickboxing, Muay Thai, and boxing gyms to coaches and gyms that specialize more in that.

Tengu Bakemono

I guess in their pea brains minds, all fights end up on the ground, but that's not necessarily true.

Jas Key

Agreed with samuraiwarrior on that many MMA coaches have more of a ground fighting background. But even a more well rounded coaches may teach more ground fighting in the beginning. With groundwork you can work with a partner without fear of injury and get to roll pretty quickly(which is fun), as opposed to striking where the coach might need to work on the holding the mitt and making sure people are not doing something to hurt themselves or their partner. Also you might need to work with a student a long time before letting them spar.