Meet Brandon and Lindsey McCaghren. Brandon is the head instructor for 10th Planet Decatur and currently the only 10th Planet instructor in the south. You may have seen some of his handy work in this viral video of a few wrestlers coming into the gym during class to challenge Brandon. See from the security footage, how the ring leader did:
I had the good fortune to meet and train with Brandon at the last Midwest 10th Planet training camp. His teaching style is very effective and even entertaining. Going from a deep southern accent to a Brazilian one, is an impressive skill on its own. Now add in his mastery on the ground and you have the makings of something great.
I sent Brandon and Lindsey some brief interview questions to see what made them tick and how they got into jiu-jitsu. What I discovered was a passionate power couple that draw inspiration from each other. They are the shinning example of teamwork in a marriage. Take a look at what I mean below:
How did you get involved in jiu-jitsu and the martial arts? My husband, Brandon, and I were looking for some way to work out together. I’ve enjoyed running and going to the gym for a long time, but he hates those things. He was very interested in learning MMA, so I decided to do it with him. We ended up in a karate school that incorporated Japanese Jiu Jitsu. We both thoroughly enjoyed the Jiu Jitsu aspect of martial arts. After five years, we were awarded our black belts in karate and decided that we wanted to solely focus on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Who do you look up to in the sport and why do you train and compete? To be honest, I don’t look up to anyone in particular. What amazes and awes me is anyone that I watch that has a true command for the sport. When I watch someone who flows or seems to dominate with such small amounts of effort, I know how much time and training they have put in. This encompasses so many people that I’ve met and trained with. Even after training for eight years, I still feel so clumsy and inept sometimes. I love rolling with veterans and true Jiu Jitsu students.
I train for several reasons. I love the knowledge. I love learning new techniques and how to move my body. I love the challenge. I still train with weights and run some, but nothing compares to the cardio that you get from rolling. I love knowing that I can defend myself. In any situation that I find myself in, I’ll be able to put up a fight.
What is your favorite item on the Fight Chix site? Chi Star zip up hoodie. I love the tanks also. I would be more likely to lift weights in the tanks than do Jiu Jitsu. I need something with a high neck if I’m going to roll. Gotta keep the girls in their place.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years both in jiu jitsu and personally? In Jiu Jitsu, I see myself in a brown belt being crushed at the bottom of my husband’s side control. Personally, I never want to be satisfied with where I am. I love to travel and see the world. I just got back from Costa Rica this summer. It was beautiful! I love to learn. Right now, I’m working on my master’s degree and trying to learn Spanish. Who knows what I’ll be challenging myself with in five years, but it will be something. Something awesome, I’m sure.
Who do you look up to for inspiration or as a role model? My husband, Brandon, has inspired me since I’ve known him. He is the best person that I know. He goes after the things that he wants with intense voracity. There is no middle ground with him. His ambitions become obsessions. He loves his family. He loves people. He loves his school. He loves 10th planet. He loves Jiu Jitsu. He has such an amazing heart. He is an outstanding father and husband. He’s my best friend.
What is your favorite submission? I love submissions from the meathook.
Can you list some of the titles you have won? I’ve only competed in one tournament. I was still a white belt. It was a local tournament. Which means that there was only one other girl in the whole tournament. She outweighed me by almost 100 pounds. I ended up tapping her out. I won the heavyweight division that day at 140 pounds.
For people considering trying jiujitsu, what words of encouragement do you have or advice would you give? For women especially, I would say that Jiu Jitsu gives you a confidence that can’t be gained anywhere else. I love being able to know that I have the skills to defend myself. I teach high school, and my students get a kick out of the fact that I train in Jiu Jitsu. They always ask if someone attacked me, who would win. I tell them that I can’t say who would win, but that I will make them wish they would have picked someone else.
How did you get involved in jiujitsu and the martial arts? I was getting really out of shape. I was up to nearly 230 pounds. I had been a fan of MMA for a long time and my wife and I decided to start trying to train together so that I could get healthy.
Who do you look up to in the sport and why do you train and compete? Of course my coach, Eddie Bravo, is my #1 mentor. I think he’s a genius and that one day he’ll be recognized as such.
Why do I train? Mostly because of the things I learn about myself from Jiu Jitsu. I believe Jiu Jitsu is a great way to develop patience, perseverance, discipline, and lots of other characteristics that help me to be a better husband and father.