316 BJJ Family

Matthew Barger (blue) gives pointers to two newer students at the 316 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Gym in Rockwall.

This is the second part of our series on the 316 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Gym in Rockwall. Our first part of the series looked at how the local gym helps veterans who suffer from PTSD deal with stress and anxiety. The following report looks at how the gym fosters a family-friendly atmosphere that helps kids and adults find confidence and discipline.

Walking into the 316 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Gym isn’t like walking into a karate or taekwondo dojo. There is an air of respect that focuses less on the instructor, Scott “Country” Paille, and more on self and others.

Through that respect, the gym teaches its students how to be successful in situations on and off the mat.

Paille’s wife, Victoria, has trained Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for the past five years and opened the Rockwall gym with her husband.

Victoria Paille spoke to the Royse City Herald-Banner about how she and her husband would go to a crossfit gym in McKinney. Around noon, the gym would roll out mats for people who wanted to train jiu-jitsu.

“I would take my book or whatever and read while they did jiu-jitsu because I didn’t want to touch a bunch of smelly guys,” Victoria Paille said.  

But Victoria always had a competitive nature about her, and when her crossfit coach tried to call her out for being scared of the mat, she had to prove him wrong.

She was matched with a girl that she had trained crossfit with. Being the bigger and stronger opponent, Victoria said she felt confident in her ability to hold her own.

“She proceeded to completely demolish me,” Victoria said.

That didn’t keep her down, however. Rather, it led her down a path that has led to her helping start the 316 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu gym.

The couple, at first, started in a garage with two students. When the number of students grew, they moved to a warehouse on Davy Crockett Street in Rockwall. Now, the gym operates out of a shopping center, located 1207 Ridge Rd. and hold four classes per week.

Though she has not practiced in several months to tend to the couple’s newborn son, Johnny, Victoria said she is looking forward to rolling again.

“Once you have the pressure of someone on top of you limiting your movement, you learn how to slow things down in your head and process things,” she said. “You also learn how to deal with things off of the mat.”

That was certainly the case for Ryleigh Barger and her two siblings, Matthew and Jacee, who also train at the gym.

Barger, who has trained Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for the past four years, said members of the gym foster a family atmosphere that encourages confidence and discipline.

“We’re one big family here. If one of us needs help, we’ll go as a group to make sure they get what they need,” Barger said. “If someone is in the hospital we’ll show up to support them.”

Barger said she starting homeschooling around middle school.

Though she calls herself an introvert, Barger said she has found confidence to be comfortable in her skin. The same has been the case for her brother Matthew, who now leads classes at the gym and participates in tournaments.

“It really helped us break out of our shells,” Barger said.

Chloe Mahaney is a resident of Rockwall and the mother of two children: Brylie and Peter.

Though her daughter has always been outgoing, Mahaney said Brylie, who is in kindergarten, has found confidence in her physical abilities. She competed in her first jiu-jitsu competition last week.

“Before she couldn’t catch a ball to save her life, and now she’s really coordinated,” Mahaney said.

Mahaney said her husband, Brandon, also trains at the gym. As a former wrestler, Brandon had wanted to learn jiu-jitsu for quite some time before joining 316 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Their daughter, who had lost interest in gymnastics, wanted to try a new activity. Not long afterward, the father-daughter duo took a few classes together and they were hooked.

Mahaney herself said she has finished her free trial at the gym and expects to attending regular classes with her family.

“It’s really empowering. You learn a few moves and you want to excel at it and you just want to learn more,” Mahaney said.

For Mahaney and others at the gym, jiu-jitsu is more than self-defense; it’s a routine family activity.

“(Brylie) is always asking if it’s jiu-jitsu day,” she said.

To help encourage more families to attend classes together, the gym offers group discounts. Those who are interested in finding out more about the gym’s classes can visit its website, 316BJJ.com.