UK Thowdown 2 - Thoughts and reflections.
This was my first throwdown and I wasn’t really sure quite what to expect. However I had a great time and was impressed with the turnout and lack of ego! I can’t quite recall everyone who there, but all in all it was 21 people. If I remember correctly, this qualifies as the largest throwdown ever.
Here is my review of it:
My plane pulled into Stanstead from Hamburg (Lübeck) at about 10:00 am. There I was greeted by Dark Majique, McKickBoxer, Jonny, and Liffguard. I had a headache and was feeling like crap, so I whined until McKickBoxer took us to a Burger King and I ate some mysterious chicken sandwich, after which we got on our way again. We pulled up into the “Tae Bo Center” (TBC) at around 13:00. There were already some bullshido guys milling around there, so I introduced myself and got changed.
We gathered in a cicle and introduced ourselves, included style, real name, bullshido name and where we were from. Everyone then warmed up on their own (it was rather cold inside) and we started doing some Vale Tudo rounds.
Being the massive stud I am, I ran onto the mat first and asked if any other lightweights would want to throw with me. Beany (boxing, tang soo do) came up and we agreed to spar a bit. We were both tentative with the contact level the first match and it went to the ground a few times. For me personally, I felt a bit awkward hitting a stranger with the Vale Tudo gloves with much force in a ‘friendly’ enviornment. I remember tapping once or twice to him as well as well. My takedown attempts were **** and I seemed to be missing any explosion on them. You will see this on the video and make fun of me later
For some reason, right after the first Vale Tudo match (it could have been how cold it was or the crap Burger King), I realized my headache came back with a vengeance and I felt sick to my stomach. I sat out for about fifteen minutes and came back for the standup only and grapple only sessions. Meanwhile I went over to RobP in order to see the Systema in action for myself (more on this later).
The grappling and standup only was great fun. I felt much more warmed up and better with these. I even pretended to be a WT stylist and found with Jekyll once. It all went pretty well until I got into ‘trapping’ range and was just clinched. I also remember grappling with McKickBoxer (getting 0wned), grappling with Dark Majique, grappling with Zed (non-bullshido member), and grappling with SamHarbor.
1. I suck. Well, this is nothing new, but only reinforced. I am not overly aggressive, but I enjoy friendly contact and have fun with MA. I am also relatively weak and unathletic compared to most people (again nothing new)
2. Tai-Chi, when trained properly, DOES WORK. And guess what? It looks very very much like any sort of MMA. Jekyll and his friend came by and told me about their training methods – they seemed very comfy with contact and had a feel for ground work as well. Training methods and fighter > system. You just have to let it all hang out sometimes.
3. Everyone had a least SOME ground game. This really shocked me. I thought I would manhandle most of the people my weight, but that was not the case. Even people from totally different styles seemed to have an idea of the basics and positioning!
4. Jonny is a true man. This was the one WCer who bothered showing up and putting his stuff to the test. You will have to ask him how he felt with it, but Borislondon and V1o seemed to have pussed away this chance to shut bullshido up and anti-grapple everyone away.
5. I have a new respect for Systema. The online videos look like crap, but there is merit to the system.
On to the Systema session. I saw Jekyll and RobP playing with the knife and decided to have a go at it. I managed to get him about one third of the time, which isn’t doesn’t seem too bad. Just to note, he brought along a few of his students, who did seem comfortable with the contact level and didn’t shy away.
So I take the knife and try to do a little knife play with him. Basically I had to idea what he was going to do, so I tried drawing him out a bit to counter. Rob usually backed away and tried to draw me out. When I came in, he would turn so the blade of the knife lay against him, then turn quickly the other way which would throw me off balance. He explained to me later this is how Systema works – instead of taking the offensive immediately, one tries to draw the opponent out and counter. He also explained to me how they try to get used to knife pricks in the class for a type of comfort level and conditioning sort of drill. I personally don’t feel comfortable with letting someone with a knife get that close to me, but I can’t argue with the results. Also, I can now see how the people flopped around on the video, but the heat stoppage thing, lack of contact, and beyond the physical are a bit over the top for my tastes. Still, RobP and his students came out – they even sparred. One strange kind of thing was the lack of guard – by this I mean during sparring, their hands were down. Dark Majique fed one guy a roundhouse sandwich to the head and he rolled around like the drunken monkey versus karate guy. The system does have its merits (particularly with the knife defenses) and should not be ignored.
To sum up, it was a great day. Only minor injuries (popped out knee by Jekyll, bloody nose from WCJudoGuy, twisted ankle from McKickBoxer) and everyone had fun. The place was a bit cold and it was hard to get into a good rhythm, so I casually mentioned a Hamburg Throwdown for next time. We will see what happens. Thanks again to everyone I sparred with and chatted with. Thanks to Jonny and RobP for coming and putting their stuff to the test and thanks for everyone who showed up!
Let’s do it again sometime!
Last edited by MrMcFu; 3/06/2005 5:22pm at .
Oh and just in case - here are some pictures of my school's facilities.
Okay, I will begin my write up soon.
Grond = Me
Awesome. . .hope the vids caught some good action. . .
Oh crap sorry Dark Majique - there is a grond on this site too. Forgive me for confusing you with a d33r B0x3r.
No problemo, your sins are forgiven.
Originally Posted by MrMcFu
My account of the throwdown
Uk Throwdown II
Bright and early I met McKickboxer at Farnborough Station and he informed me that Asia had pulled out. So, breathing a sigh of relief we travel up to London to pick up Liffguard, next up is Standsted Airport where we have try to locate Jonny. This turned into one of those comedy situations where the person is standing six feet away from you yet you maintain contact on the cell phone. Not long after this, MrMcFu put his ninja skills to good use, stealthily avoided the entrance which we were watching and snuck up on us from the rear.
Heading further north we encountered a burger king and the temptation kicked in. Now perhaps this was not the best food to eat pre-throwdown but it sure is tasty, with a gut full of Burger King Goodness we all headed up to the Thai Bo studio.
Through the skilful use of a kettle I managed to royally **** up my mouth guard which bothered me during the Vale Tudo fight with Liffguard. Considering Liffguard had 9 months of Brazillian JiuJitsu under his belt, I decided that the best plan would be to keep it standing and use t3h Mu4y Th4I. The sheer smallness of the gloves confused me and I ate punches and kicks from Liffguard like an idiot. Thankfully I managed to sprawl his single leg attempt and he pulled guard. The rest of the match consisted of us exchanging punches in his guard, probably very unexciting to watch.
Next we did some straight up rolling:
(It is likely that I will **** up on the names, just let me know)
Beaney – Pulled guard from knees, after a while I saw the opportunity for an armbar and took it.
SamHarber – A much longer session, I found myself in a front headlock type of thing, it was draining the energy from me and luckily I managed to escape it and sneak the RNC on.
Liffguard – Got owned pretty good, took the bottom position in half guard, that was passed into mount where we remained until he scored a textbook armbar.
WCJudoGuy – Rolled twice with him, tapping out to a Guillotine and another armbar, I don’t remember much of this apart from that he was much better than I was.
MrMcFu – Scoring a heelhook on me pretty early on, he then showed me a few things. However, I do plan to use the footage of the armbar that he let me lock onto him :happy3:
Grippa - Made some great footage, from knees I took his back and he promptly Judo’d me into oblivion over his shoulder, which would have been pretty darn fun apart from the fact that my shoulder briefly popped out and me being unable to continue, we need a rematch buddy :viking:
Then into the Stand up:
I believe I only fought two people here, hopefully I can get a few more rounds in at the next throwdown.
Systema Guy – I have never sparred anyone like this before, a very interesting experience. They seem to have the usual shin checking block for low kicks and for attack above the waist I noticed that the tactic seemed to be to avoid and counter with some kind of whipping motion which contained great power. Now my usual tactic is kick to the thigh to bring the hands down and unleash a surprise head kick. Now against someone who fought with their hands down anyway I skipped the first part and went straight to jabs and crosses and High Kicks, I managed to land a few across the Jaw and I remember taking one of his hits across the gloves, very powerful. I would like to spar with a few more Systema guys, which sure was a new experience.
SamHarber 1 – This was a battle, quite early into the fight I noticed that I was very out punched and elected to work my kicking and avoid most of his blows. This didn’t work as well as I wanted it to and so I ate quite a few punches, one quite memorably and of course it shows up beautifully on the footage. Two minutes into the fight I managed to land a hard jab through his guard, this brought it to an end.
SamHarber 2- Being the masochist that he is, he demanded a second round almost immediately, So grudgingly, I found us squaring of again exchanging knees in the clinch and both landing some good shots, after a while I slipped to the left and hit him with an overhand right slightly too hard, once again stopping the fight.
All in all, it was a very good throwdown, the contact level and willingness to fight had risen immensely from the last one and I encountered no egos whatsoever. Special thanks goes out to Onny for providing the location and McKickboxer for driving me halfway around the country and back.
Great fun, I hope to see you all at the next one.
Last edited by Grant; 3/07/2005 11:40am at .
And Sam Harbor really puts the Crazy Monkey to use well. I liked what I saw of that.
First off, thanks to Oni for organising the venue and to everyone who turned up. It was refreshing to see a group of people working with no egos or silliness and we had a good time.
It was interesting for us to work in a slightly differrent environment but I was pleased to see the guys stay relaxed and keep moving and not get tapped.
Just to answer a couple of specific points -
Mr MCFu - I think that was Paul you did the knife stuff with
Regarding the guard thing - I guess that's cos we normally do situational work and so explore working from all types of positions. Yes, we do tend to use move / counter more that covering or blocking.
Saw some good skills on display - DM has some nice kicks - and overall it was a good session. Jekyll - hope the knee is ok.
I managed to tape a fair bit of the proceedins, I'll see if I can get some clips up later this week.