Monday, August 24, 2015
Friday, August 21, 2015
There are many reasons people train in martial arts. Fitness, flexibility, stress relieve, etc. Of course the main reason is self-defense. But how does one truly develop self-defense skills? Many train scenarios and simulated situations to practice lethal techniques (attacks to throat, eyes, groin, etc.). This group looks and combat sports as ineffective for self-defense. Then there are art the martial/combat sports folks. These are those that get on the mats, get in the ring or cage, and compete against another trained opponent. They compete under a set of rules that allow them to go full force without seriously injurying an opponent (like taking out an eye or ripping a testicle off). My take on things is that the combat sport athlete is learning skills that translate to self defense more so than the guy who is practicing theory. The athlete is going to be in better shape and does sparring of some sort. In competition one faces fear, fatigue, and anxiety. Unless one faces daily struggle in training they can't prepare themselves for anything. Sparring gives you adversity and struggle because you have a non-compliant partner.
Friday, August 14, 2015
Building a foundation is key in everything. Today we live in a society of instant gratification. We want things fast and easy. You use to have to search through the library to find out things. Now, you can search google and it pops right up. This is not a bad thing because you can Youtube something and find out how to do it right then. You can have have someone instruct on how to fix things, perform a certain move, etc. The bad thing is that these easy go to things makes some of us lazy. We lose the ablility to figure out things when the get difficult. We forget that we have to still study and practice.
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
How long does it take to be come a top fighter in Boxing, Kickboxing, MMA, etc.? In looking at MMA, we see that the best usually come from a grappling background (wrestling, BJJ, Judo, Sambo) and add on striking. There are stand up fighters (Silva, Crocop, GSP, etc.) who have come the other way from Standing to Grappling, but usually it's the other way around, because the takedown artist can better predict where the fight takes place. In looking at Kickboxing, we see that the Thai are not the dominant force in Muay Thai like they used to be. The Dutch have always had a strong position in the sport (especially the heavier weights). The Russians produce good fighters in Kickboxing (as well as all combat sports). Americans are gradually making their way back into kickboxing as we are seeing more Glory Kickboxing events in the US. Boxing is still a sport where most of the successful athletes start as kids and gain a lot of amateur experience before turning professional. Being an Olympic sport and the combat sport where fighters make the most money, it takes years to get to the big leagues. When I was coming up, American Kickboxing was the big thing. Most of the fighters came from traditional martial arts backgrounds and went to boxing gyms to learn the hands and how to train efficiently for the ring. When people argue about which sport is harder, I tell them they all are. I think that the individual disciplines (wrestling, judo, boxing, etc.) tend to be more difficult than mixed combat sports (Kickboxing and MMA) because of limits you don't have as many options. I have seen many try to go into professional boxing from other combat sports and have a hard time boxing with a teenage golden gloves boxer. Of course the boxer would be out of his elememnt if kickboxing and grappling are added. But, the skill level of the boxing tends to be on another level. When I was kickboxing, there were many kickboxers who also ventured into boxing. The success in one did not translate to the other. When you look at MMA, you will see champions with less that 10 fights become champion. This is almost impossible in kickboxing and boxing. The champions in these sports tend to have more fight experience before earning titles. Now as I stated earlier the grappling based athlete in MMA with the most success usually comes from a grappling background. So, he may have wrestled from childhood through college, giving him a lot of experience. So, after all of that, it seems that one has to start young in something to be successful in combat sports. There are exceptions, but the more experience the better. Those exceptions are adults who start later but have exceptional work ethic and dedicatition.
Wednesday, August 5, 2015
The baddest man or woman on the planet? You have heard this many times. Mike Tyson, Rousey, Crocop (back in the day), etc. What makes a fighter the baddest in their sport? Is Mayweather the best fighter in Boxing? Is Ronda Rousey the baddest woman on earth? I would say no to both. Now, both of these athletes are tremendous and accomplished. Both were olympians (Silver and Bronze medalists respectively). But when you look at Rousey for example, she is outclassing her competition. Why? Because she is a world class athlete (a shark) thrown into the water with lesser competition (minoes). Now if you were to take some of the top female Judoka in the world and train them for MMA, I think she would get better competiton. Or, if she went up in weight and fought Cyborg we might see a challenging fight. But for now, she will continue to dominate. Mayweather is undefeated, but there are a lot of fighters in around his weight class that he won't fight. He seems to choose opponents he knows he can beat. Fighters like Ali, Hoost, Fedor, fought the best of their eras. We miss the days of Pride where there was the Grand Prix tournament, will at the end of the night, no one can argue who was the champion. I always say that a tournament is the best way to determine who is the best. Take the top fighters, put them in a tournament and at the end of the night, we can say that who is number one. Do this once a year and see who remains on top.