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Turning the tables: Grappling defends Striking

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    Turning the tables: Grappling defends Striking

    All this time, we've been discussing how striking can defend against grappling. Knee this, sidestep that, punch then, etc. What I want to ask is, how can grappling defend against striking?

    Think about it for a moment: In the early UFCs, in the Vale Tudo(or "Vale Algo" if you prefer) competitions of today, when a striker is pitted vs. a grappler, almost invariably they face off, wait, the grappler shoots, the striker mounts a pitiful defense, and the match is concluded with the usual winner.

    What if, instead of getting their asses kicked, these strikers mounted an offensive from the beginning (a strategy not usually adopted by TMAists)? How would a grappling opponent defend himself?

    Granted, grapplers often adopt low stances suitable for shooting, which simultaneously would be difficult to attack, but there are weapons in the arsenal of almost every art equal to this task.

    So, for the sake of argument, let's assume our VingTsun man or Shotokan nidan, or some other striker, instead of getting tackled and subbed as they tend to, unleashed hell on his opponent from the beginning, attacking with all the calculated fury his martial experience can muster. What is the grappler going to do in response to being attacked by a SKILLED (you won't hear any of that "90% of art X sucks" argument from me) striker, to prevent being KTFO or knocked down for the GNP? If he is knocked down and set upon, how much chance is there that he'll be composed enough to pull guard or defend himself somehow against being beat into the mat?

    I want to hear this, so respond even if you don't have much to say.

    Clap your hands everybody,
    if you got what it takes
    'Cause I'm Kurtis Blow
    and I want you to know
    that these are the breaks!
    "The morning glory blooms for an hour. It differs not at heart from the giant pine, which lives for a thousand years."

    Ok... Since I have been giving stirker a lot of credit, I will give grapler some too. The grappler have some advantage over strikers. If a grappler are experince, they can usually confuse the striker or cause them to blink or do something to take them off defense for a split seconds. Once that happen the grappler can take down the striker and hold the striker down and conrtol the fights. Another advantage that grappler have is if they are very good, they can control a opponent and avoid getting hits or kicks at full strenght. However for right now, the grappler DOES rule most of the martial arts. But that doesn't mean they can just relaxes now because in few years the strikers will catch up and give grappler a hard time. Also there are some strikers who can fight very well against a grappler. But there are many grapplers who can fights much better than striker because most of the striker sucks. I thinks the best thing for a grappler to do is learning some of striking technique so they can continue to be well around fighters in the future. That go the same for a skilled strikers, they have to learn some grappling technique to maintence their skills for the future.

    "I would rather admit I am a lousy student than say I am the best, because once you think you are the best, there is no reason to continue learning."
    I would pick bag work over masturbating, fighting over sex, and KOing someone over having a orgasm!


      Very simple:

      Close the distance

      Mai is one of the most important things in a "skilled fight" the grapplers range is the close range, so he has to close the distance as fast as he can. That is the reason for the shoot - getting close fast, even if you get hurt some on the way.
      Now, since according to UFC rules you can't be hitten on the most of your back (at least not at the most vital points - spine etc), shooting with your back bent is the best option for the circumstances.

      And guess what - the grapplers are really using this option a lot (at least according to your descriptions of the UFC - I have hardly seeen any of them)



        This is something I haven't test... But it is probably possible to snap a grappler's neck in a life theartening fights. Their head will be so close and turn to side which would make it easy to grab their head and twist it. It is just from observing how most grappler shoot... But I don't know if it work or not.

        "I would rather admit I am a lousy student than say I am the best, because once you think you are the best, there is no reason to continue learning."
        I would pick bag work over masturbating, fighting over sex, and KOing someone over having a orgasm!


          Well there are more than one way to snap neck... Just as there are more than one way to shoot. Also you don't have to get your arm or hand around their neck to do it.

          "I would rather admit I am a lousy student than say I am the best, because once you think you are the best, there is no reason to continue learning."
          I would pick bag work over masturbating, fighting over sex, and KOing someone over having a orgasm!


            most graplers have strong neck muscles. Just something I thought id point out.

            "An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind"


              Welp I've two experiences to relate here. One was competition match, San Shou, this guy tried to shoot on my friend and all he did was just lower his stance straight down the shooter ran into a knee and got grasped and tossed out of the ring. Was hilarious.

              Another was my uncle showing me a black tiger palm strike to the back of the neck, that pretty much discouraged me from shooting. In the style I'm learning now, we always always protect the back of our necks, we don't make very many movements without being aware of our weak spots.

              Problem with most striking arts today, is they emphasize "self defense" a bit too much, striking should be attack,attack,attack.


                Magik, it sounds like you are learning something very effective, I like your quote on not having many weak spots. What style do you studies? I would like to watch them in action some time.

                "I would rather admit I am a lousy student than say I am the best, because once you think you are the best, there is no reason to continue learning."
                I would pick bag work over masturbating, fighting over sex, and KOing someone over having a orgasm!


                  I believe a grappler has two main options if he is getting pounded by an effective striker while standing. I guess that we are assuming that the grappler cannot use the stand-up options avialable to him such as circling out, bob-and-weave, slipping, flurry of hands (shoeshine drill),counterpunching, and hands up to cover and parry because he is unaware, unable to, or has tried these techniques and failed. Option one is to change levels, this can lead to a shoot if there is a distance between the opponent, or if your striking opponent is coming in, the level change will take the stiker into a ready position you where upon the grappler must execute the takedown. The second option is the clinch or tie-up. The clinch exists in most striking sports (boxing, Muay-thai, etc.) and allows for some control of the opponent. If the grappler is more skilled in the clinch, many options are avialable including; striking (elbows, knees, dirty boxing)while attached, a nuetralization of opponent's striking through control, a takedown, standing submission (chokes, neck cranks), stalling to disrupt stiker's timing and rhythem, and stalling to initiate the break to strike off of thereby catching opponent unprepared.
                  As to some of the other comments made on this thread....firstly, breaking someone's neck is very difficult to do, and if you aren't trained in the art of submissions, you will not be able to do it. It doesn't work like in the movies where you turn someone's head really fast and their neck snaps. If you want me to I can describe neck cranks to you further, but suffice it to say it works on the same principles of all submissions, isolate, apply leverage to force body from function to disfunction. Strikes vs. takedown shot is something that has been discussed before, basically your best advice to sprawl to stop the shot first, then strike. Striking to stop the shot is possible, but it is an extremely low percentage solution. It has a very low success rate. Usually the strike is mistimed and your base is already taken away by the time you attempt a strike, which will have no paower. Striking the back or spine as someone suggested will not stop a shot in my experience, only annoy whoever shot in on you further leading to you on the recieveing end of a monkey stomping. The same goes for all the other places that where suggested as vulerable spots. Again, to stop the shot SPRAWL, then brawl. Watch Chuck Liddel, Vanderlei Silva vs. Dan Henderson, or Mirko CroCop vs. Sakuraba for execellent demonstrations of the Sprawl and Brawl.


                    Sakurabafan speaks the truth. Punches and elbow strikes to the spine ARE legal in Vale Tudo and were legal in early UFC matches. People tried them agains the shoot-- didn't work. Watch Gracies in Action 2, one of the Hapkido guys tries it with no success.

                    As Sakurabafan said, strikers attack grapplers all the time in NHB matches. If you can't counterstrike you close the distance and get out of the strikers comfort zone where he can pummel you. That's why so many fights end up in the standing clinch, you can effectively tie the opponent up and regroup or go for the takedown.

                    Again, we have the benefit of hundreds of NHB/MMA matches over the past decade to see what happens in these scenarios. Of course the grapplers don't always win, no style is perfect or undefeated, but there are certain clear trends that you see over and over, that certain styles are much more effective in this milieu.

                    This garbage about snapping someones neck is another example of TMA fantasy theory. Most effective fighters attack with a low kick or punches while closing the distance for the clinch and takedown, there's no way in hell you're going to grab their head and snap their neck. Plus your neck/shoulder muscles are contracted when you shoot which would make it even more unlikely.


                      I'm starting to think you people think that BJJ guys and other grapplers train only to fight against other grapplers.

                      One of the first things you learn in BJJ is how to take someone down who is punching you. Keep your feet close to the person, and lean slightly away, hands lower than a boxer to attract a punch to the head.

                      "Well blowjob boy, if you keep your hands down, you will get punched in the face"

                      certainly a risk, but if you are baiting someone into throwing a high punch, then you are ready for it, increasing your ability to slip and shoot. your feet are kept close to make the shoot quicker by subtracting steps.



                        In the early UFCs the grapplers knew enough about striking to defend it. Now it seems to me that the strikers have learnt enough grappling to defend against it. e.g. Cro Cop, Liddel etc


                          Right TMAs can break concrete but not necks? I think you're selling yourself short if you think its impossible to do so. I've watched a lot of UFC too, and whenever I see a shooter get caught I cringe, looking at the fulcrum created by the trapping arm and the free arm that could just drop on that neck.

                          But anyways, shooters are safe from having to worry about their spines or necks, even if striking it was legal how many fighters are gonna actually do it?

                          Most neckbreaks are grappling techniques aren't they? You could strike it too, but like some people said that's very difficult because fighters tuck their heads in or contract their muscles.

                          Well anyways, I'm not going to make myself that vulnerable by assuming that its impossible to get my neck snapped. I don't know about the others here, but I've had the fortune/misfortune to actually use what I was learning. I got attacked last year from behind and I took a couple of shots right to the back of my head, I turned around grapped his elbow yanked forward and drove my forearm into his face. If I wanted to, I'm pretty sure I could have taken that neck with his body going one way and mine the opposite. Its just physics man, now if that guy was a trained grappler could I do it? Who knows, maybe maybe not.


                            I'd like to address some of the points that you bring up.

                            You point out in your experience that you were able to continue fighting even after taking punches to the back of the head. This is a point that I and others have been trying to make. Even if you get tagged while shooting in for the takedown, it won't stop your shot or your disire or ability to continue. Many people here believe that simply striking someone that is shooting in will knockout whoever tries to take them down, your experiences, as well as the evidence we've seen from MMA and Vale Tudo competitions show us the contrary.
                            The second point is about the neck break. It is nearly impossible to break someone's neck by punching them. Think of the forces exerted upon the neck, in a car accident where someone sustains whiplash, akin to a strike, violent impact force pushing either forward, backward, to the side. This doesn't result in a broken neck, even though the forces in a high speed accident are far greater that a punch or strike.
                            To break a neck, its just like breaking the arm at the elbow, or a straight kneebar; isolate the body part, then use leverage to force the body to disfunction. For the neck it means securing the neck as a fulcrum. But it also means that the shoulders and sometimes the hips as well must be secured so as to prevent them from moving along with the head and neck. Try this, move your head by grabbing at the chin and twisting your neck to a side. Notice that at certain point your shoulders will automatically adjust to compensate for the movement of your head. Whatever side you turn you head to, the opposite side shoulder twists forward, the body works to keep function. To prevent this and break the neck you must prevent the shoulders from moving, and the sometimes hips as well. This is how to break the neck, there are serveral techniques for breaking the neck, but these princples remain reguardless.
                            As for your point about breaking concrete; well its nice, but watch any demonstration of breaking things (boards, concrete, cookies). You'll notice serveral things, one the breaker is under no pressure from the concrete trying to attack him. Essentially, the breaker can get himself in the ideal striking position, concentrate and relax, and strike. The concrete isn't moving or going anywhere so its relatively easy. This is the exact opposite of a strike during a fight or match. In this case your opponent is moving, trying to attack you, won't let you stand in one place, relax, and strike at your fullest. That's why I put little credence into breaking demonstration, it has no relation to striking in a fight or match.


                              My biggest arguement against the concrete analogy is that concrete is brittle and the body is not. It is easy to break something brittle and /or rigid, but not something that is flexible.
                              Taking responsibility for my actions since 1989



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