Insights from UFC 159 on why your "reality self defense" training sucks
So having watched UFC 159 live in-house, I had the luxury of witnessing 3 martial arts myths exposed, for all the world to see.
Let me begin by saying this is directed at those of you who teach or train, believing that when you see a live mixed martial art event, that those young athletic fighters are merely participating in a sport, that only tangentially relates to REAL fighting for ones own protection. That you believe real self defense training looks nothing like those combatants, and involves reliance on dangerous, sport-illegal, dirty fighting tactics such as groin kicking, throat punching, eye gouging, fish hooking, knee stomping, hair pulling, and perhaps nipple twisting. If you believe that grappling training is ridiculous because you would just simply knee your opponent in the balls, jab them in the eyes, and stand up if it was a REAL fight. If you rationalize your own inability at boxing or grappling style sparring, by reminding yourself that REAL fighting doesn't involve two people squaring up, slugging it out, or rolling around on the ground. If you only give begrudging respect to professional fighters, and constantly display a defensive attitude towards those who practice real combat arts such as boxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Judo, and kickboxing.
Let me answer that passive aggressiveness with good old-fashioned aggressiveness: This post is for helping you understand why your training sucks, why your students suck, why your teacher probably sucked, and most importantly, why YOU suck.
Jon Jones vs Chael Sonnen
This fight puts on perfect display the flaw of believing that you can rely on small joint breaks or manipulation to overcome an opponent. I often hear said, "MMA training doesn't teach you to attack small joints, in a REAL fight there are no rules," as an excuse to avoid sport-style live training that bars such practices.
Jon Jones dished out a beating to Chael, who was at a loss to counter Jones' superior takedowns and ground striking. After winning, and celebrating by running around the ring, it was pointed out to him that his big toe had completely broken somewhere during the fight, as pictured here (http://cdn0.sbnation.com/uploads/cho...dard_709.0.jpg). Only after the adrenaline had worn off, did Jones even acknowledge the supposedly "fight ending" joint break, and even then he managed to laugh it off.
He is not the first however. Randy Couture broke his hand in round 1 of a 5 round fight against Tim Sylvia, where he proceeded to beat Sylvia with his broken hand to a victory. Tim Sylvia to his credit broke a larger joint in his arm during a match, that was only stopped by a ref, not because Sylvia had lost his will to fight. And for those who would say, "well those guys are professional badasses, and the average person could not withstand that kind of pain," I will use myself as an example, where in a non-adrenaline environment I tore a ligament in my hand during pure grappling training, that was not noticed till long after class had ended, and resulted in a trip to the ER.
Moral of the story? Relying on grabbing fingers, and breaking toes to incapacitate your opponent is wishful thinking at best, and dangerously delusional at worst. The last thing you want to do is just make someone trying to hurt you even madder. A better idea is to learn how to actually fight better than them, and overcome them with proven high percentage technique.
Sara McMann vs Sheila Gaff
Female fights are a new commodity for the UFC, and I cannot support it enough. For too long have women been told by smarmy Martial Arts instructors that they are weaker, smaller, and less capable than men at fighting, and must learn to train and fight differently than them to surmount these shortcomings. Advice such as groin kicking, pinching, biting, and even pepper spray are all standard fare for these frauds. All of these supposed shortcuts to victory, women are no more capable of performing than any male they may be fighting, nor are they any more capable of performing them than someone completely untrained.
In this fight, Sara puts her olympic level wrestling on display going for a quick takedown where she eventually won via ground-n-pound in a mounted crucifix position. Here we have a young girl, who very well could have found herself training in one of these strip mall Karate schools where she would be taught that she is nothing but a step away from becoming a victim due to her gender. Instead she learned to wrestle, then she learned to fight, and now she along with many female fighters are more than capable of defeating males far larger than her, some who perhaps even train and fight themselves. A quick look at the last season of The Ultimate Fighter, we see Ronda Rousey, the current female champ who weighs in at a whopping 135lbs, repeatedly submitting fellow male fighter Uriah Hall who competes at 185lbs. These individuals didn't do anything but train hard. They are no different than any other female out there, with the exception that they didn't make excuses for themselves, and they didn't decide to train at shitty schools.
Why pay someone for classes every month, if you aren't getting any better, and he has nothing to teach you but BS that you are inferior.
Michael Bisping vs Alan Belcher
In this fight, Alan Belcher went down to nothing more than an accidental eye poke. During a punch, Bisping's hand opened, and jammed in deep cutting Belcher's eye. So here it is right? Undeniable proof that eye gouging works right!? Not quite.
The only way Bisping was able to land that eye jab -freak accident mind you- was because he was out-striking Belcher the entire fight, constantly holding the upper hand in exchanges. Were he like you, pretending to jab eyes in front of a mirror, instead of working on his boxing with live opponents, Belcher would have destroyed him with punches and kicks before Bisping could even get close enough to poke at his eye. You cannot build a combative skillset without a foundation any more than you can build a house without a foundation. Everything else is fluff and furnishings. Anyone who tells you otherwise is full of ****. Sometimes they even believe their own bullshit, but that doesn't mean it isn't still bullshit.