Jason Medina Still Fighting for His People


jasonmedinaInside Ekim’s along 1st Ave. in Silvis, you can find kids learning karate, ladies exercising, and guys like Jason Medina teaching and training the next generation of Mixed Martial Arts fighters.  Jason Medina, 38, first got into Mixed Martial Arts in early 1997 when he watched a show with a couple of his buddies who told him he could not do MMA; it was a challenge for him and so he did it.  He went from 202 Lbs to 172 and then
entered his first tournament which he won even though he was injured.  He says that he never took it that serious but he kept on fighting.  His record as an amateur was 4-0 and then he turned pro and began training with former UFC champion Pat Miletich.  Then opportunities came and Medina got to fight around the country and eventually had the opportunity to fight Frank Trigg, one of the best fighters in the world.  He took the fight within one days notice even though he had not trained in two months.  The outcome didn’t go in his favor but it was one of his high points of his career.
“I’m a pioneer on my way out,” says Medina, “this is a young man’s sport.”
Medina says that he figures he still has about a year-and-a-half of fighting still left in him.  He now concentrates on helping the next generation of fighters whether it’s by training with them or by simply offering advice.
At the gym he excuses himself from our conversation and greets a new face that is just sitting there as if waiting for someone, later he does the same and says “let me help out this Mexican kid here.”
He comes back and asks himself what he can do for “mi gente” or his people. That is what Medina wants to do, help out his people.
“I can spar with them; some guys are afraid to work out because they don’t know anyone and don’t want to get beat up.”  Medina says.  “If they can learn from my past, getting in trouble with the law, if they can learn in a positive environment.”
But Medina will not just do it for anyone, “They got to show me some corazon, got to show me some heart.  We need more Mexicans coming here and working together instead of all this gang stuff.”
Even though he learned a lot from fighting in the streets of Moline’s west end where he grew up, his discipline was cultivated through boxing and wrestling.  He was an amateur boxer in the 8th grade.  He then joined wrestling in high school from 9th grade to 12th where he made it to state his last two years there.  He didn’t expect to get into fighting until he saw MMA and figured that with his fighting background he could easily get into MMA.
Today he trains with his good friends Kenny Nyquist and Mike Smith.  He trains regularly with Nyquist who still has a long future in fighting ahead of him.  He also says he is at the gym to help anybody that wants to better his or herself.
“Anyone who wants to better themselves.  Whether its weight wise, mentally; I want to be a positive impact,”   Medina said.

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