Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Yesterday I talked about singular disciplines. In looking at Mixed Martial Arts, we know that it is about several disciplines. They key is to be adequate at several ranges of combat. But the thing that makes this sport unique is being able to transition from striking to grappling back to striking, etc. To blend the disciplines together is what makes it difficult for many newcomers. So, practice strikes to takedowns/throws, to positions of control to submissions and mix it up.
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Just because you kickbox does not mean you can box like a boxer. Just because you do karate does not mean you can kick like a tae kwon do guy. Every martial art has a specialty. And specialist are good at what they do. If you were to get on the ground and roll with Marcelo Garcia you would have a hard time. If you were to box a couple of rounds with Andre Ward, you would have a hard time. If you were to do some kicks only with Stephen Lopez, you would have a hard time. An MMA approach would be to learn a few things from each range of combat. I prefer that you spend time in each range and develop indidual skills and then put them together. As a commentator, Frank Trigg once said what made Fedor the most dangerous man on the planet in his prime was that he may not be black belt level in each range of combat, but he is at least brown belt in each.
Monday, October 29, 2012
I always hear Karate guys saying gloved fighting is so different than without in that Boxers will injure their hands easier than the Karate guy. First of all, Boxing is a speciality art that specializes in "Punching". The object is to use the hands to do damage. The hands hit things 95% of the time (except in shadow boxing). The hands are wrapped for support and different types of gloves are used for training (bag, sparring, etc.). Daily bag work and sparring means you throw a lot of punches. And these punches are thrown with power. So, the hands are actually developed and are strong. Boxers usually have big knuckles. The Karateka will condition his/her hands by knuckle push ups (Boxers do them too) and hitting makiwara boards. But let me tell you this, they can still injure their hands like any boxer. It is a misconception that their hands are better prepared for bare knuckle fighting.
Friday, October 26, 2012
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Kyokushin Karate is known as the "Strongest Karate" as fighters compete under knockdown (no pads) rules. The style (created by Mas Oyama) grew out of traditional karate practice into a more modern practical approach. The emphasis is on Kumite (free fighting). I came across this cool highlight of the style. Enjoy. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-C9SnOhEmiQ&feature=related
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Friday, October 19, 2012
The art of Judo is my grappling base. I have trained with martial artists from other grappling styles (wrestling, BJJ, etc.) and I incorporate techniques from these other styles into my overall grappling style. Being a kickboxer and tae kwon do guy for many years, I feel that judo goes well with what I do. When two guys are exchanging punches many times a clinch will take place. In the case of muay thai where you can grab and knee, clinch training is crucial. Judo gives me many options from this position. When I competed in Shidokan Triathlon tournaments (karate, kickboxing, grappling), during the karate phase, judo came into play. We had to wear a gi, kicks were allowed to the entire body, no punches to the head (because this was bare knuckle), and clinching and throwing are allowed. Judo also provides balance and by knowing what removes balance you can better defend take downs. Many people see judo as more of a throwing art and they don't think much of judo's ground game. I've been fortunate to train with judo coaches and players who approach the art and sport with a balance. The great thing about judo is that you develop skills in both areas so that if you face someone better in one area, you have a back up. Since I know longer compete in full contact hitting sports, I am still able to get out on the mats and compete in judo. I am humble because the dominance I had as a kickboxer is not the same for this sport. Everytime I train with my judo friends I learn something new. In my 40s, I still have an competitve outlet that allows me to gain new experiences.
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Having a 20 year career in the sport of kickboxing and having fought under different rules, I get asked sometimes about my particular style of kickboxing. I come from a Korean martial arts background (Tang Soo Do and Tae Kwon Do). I started training in American Kickboxing (aka Full Contact Karate, above the waist rules) in 1985. In order to do well in this sport you had to learn how to box. After spending several years in boxing gyms and training with top notch boxers, I started boxing competitively. Also during this time, I met other kickboxing stylist (low kick and muay thai) and through training learned new techniques and other methods of training. In the 90s I started to learn pure muay thai. I spend 3 years training 6 days a week just like one would in a Thai Camp (running, bag and pads, neck wrestling, sparring, etc.). By the time 2000 came, I was able to effectively blend all of my experiences into a unique approach to stand up fighting. Having been a high level Tae Kwon Do competitor (I finished 2nd in the nation at one time), having been an amateur and professional boxer (above average as a boxer but able to box better than 90% of my fellow kickboxers), having won a U.S. Kickboxing title (ISKA Full Contact Lightmiddleweight title) and having fought in an 8 man Muay Thai tournmanet (Shikon Thai Boxing Grand Prix in Europe). So, with all that said, I've been able to blend the experiences of individual sports in one system. I have been able to change the dance with opponents. By that, I mean I can catch their rhythm but give something different that they have trouble picking up on. If they do, I give them something else. Because these speciality areas have different ranges, strategies and training methods, I've been able to apply all of them whenever I needed to for an advantage over the competition.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
In my opinion, Anderson Silva is the top dog in MMA. What he did this past weekend to Stephan Bonnar was awesome. Silva makes good fighters look bad. He is the 1st fighter to stop Bonnar. Many want to see him fight GSP and Bone Jones. Hopefully these matches will happen sooner than later (as Silva is in his late 30s now). As far as today is concerned, I think he's the best.
Monday, October 15, 2012
Friday, October 12, 2012
I came across this really cool video, "Why I train Jiu Jitus", and I wanted to you to see it. You will see some very good BJJ. You will see some great submissions here. Check it out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJhWDs__B8U&feature=g-vrec
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
I say this all of the time. The art of boxing has the best hand techniques. I watch fights of all kinds and the most damage done to an opponent usually comes from better boxing skills. No matter whether it's MMA, Kickboxing, or Muay Thai, all else being close to equal the better punches usually wins. From my experiences as a competitor, I feel that one of my advantages was that I had a boxing background. From the stand up point of view in combat, a fighter can use hands and feet. It is rare that you will find fighters skilled enough to make their feet stand on their own. The better boxer in this case usually has the upper hand (literally). So, go to a boxing gym (not a martial arts guy doing boxing) and learn the sweet science.
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
In looking at the evolution of martial arts in the last few decades, you see big changes. A lot of people may think that the spinnng back kick, axe kick, spinning back fist, etc. are part of some ancient martial art. When former military men came back from overseas duty, they brought martial arts systems from where they were stationed. Those stationed in Okinawa brought back Karate and those stationed in Korea brought back Tang Soo Do/Tae Kwon Do. The early American Karate tournaments consisted of Japanese based competitors. When the Korean influence came about, people had never seen the jumping and spinning kicks. A friend of mine who started out as a Shotokan guy back in the day said that his first time seeing a spin kick was during a fight. His opponent stands in front of him and is hopping up and down (like a Tae Kwon Do guy). The guy jumps and spins. My friend wakes up later in amazement realizing that he just got knocked out with a spin kick. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-KPUjNLgOU&feature=fvwrel
Friday, October 5, 2012
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
I was doing a few rounds of boxing sparring with a young fellow yesteday. I usually spar barefoot even when just working hands only. For the first time in a long time (years), I put on my boxing boots to train in. Wow! I forgot who different the footing was and how the advantages to wearing shows. As stated, you get better footing. You have more leverage and by being able to grip the floor with the shoes, you can punch harder. For those of you who've never boxed, try a few rounds with a real boxer and feel the difference.