Organized sports are known to improve people’s lives and this is especially true for Jarred “Bear” Fiorda, an MMA fighter from Desert Hot Springs. His life changed when he started training MMA as a child and now his life mission is to give the same opportunity he has had to others in Coachella Valley. Fiorda opened the non-profit Free MMA Gym with his mother in 2018 in hopes of helping those like him as a child.
“I started martial arts when I was five because my dad died and it left me very, very angry. I started acting in school, fighting physically, and my mom decided that if I had to be this aggressive in school, she was going to put me somewhere to do it productively. So she put me in a martial arts class and I fell in love with it.
It’s in the name, Free MMA is 100% free, Fiorda designed it that way because he wanted to be a positive resource within his community after seeing so many friends that he grew up in the gym go down the wrong path due to not having a grip like martial arts.
“Unfortunately a lot of my friends who would join me at the gym, they fall down, they get into different issues, I mean, but realistically they joined gangs got drugged and some of them died. So it hurt me but it also let me know that if they stayed in martial arts if they had stayed on the same path as me they would have the same opportunities as me. That’s why my mom and I created this foundation here because we wanted to give everyone the same opportunities as I did, whether they can afford it or not.
– BearFiorda (@BearFiorda) August 1, 2021
Everything inside Free MMA, from the rugs on the floor to the artwork on the walls, has been donated by members of the community, Fiorda is also using social media and prizes from her professional fights to fund this organization. non-profit.
“All the social media I do, all the money I make from it goes here to Free MMA. Including the money I earn from the fights will go to support the association here. So we have a great response from community and I’m giving all I can to make sure this gym stays open to everyone for as long as possible.
Free MMA offers a wide range of courses ranging from “six years to one hundred and six!” Regardless of your age, Free MMA will build up your self-confidence as you learn the art of self-defense and discipline.
“When it comes to self defense, a good part of getting started with martial arts is how much you’ll want to know that you are able to defend yourself. This is the most important thing. However, for the most part anyone can enter. It’s not like we’re restricting anyone on the basis of anything, do you want to come and take martial arts to come right in through the gates. Again, this is something that has benefited me my whole life. If I can give someone some happiness through martial arts, and I did when my goal was and that’s what I want to give everyone.