Monday, April 11, 2011

well grounded....

The debate over stand-up combat versus ground fighting is a touchy one.... myself, i think going to the ground in a real life situation should be a last resort. The ground is harder than mats, and assailants may lurk nearby. Also, if a knife is drawn, the best defense--running away--is eliminated. That said, I do think a martial art that doesn't prepare an individual for possible ground combat is incomplete. This doesn't mean full-scale Brazilian jiu-jitsu or wrestling skills, but rather a few go-to chokes, strikes, or dirty and quick methods of escape.

Many individuals today, such as many a UFC fan, may not realize that much of the ground tactics employed in the ring are derivatives of the Japanese system to begin with. These pictures are all from Judo (judo is a sport derived from Japanese jiu-jitsu, as is the grappling art of Brazil).

Realistically, Judo has a very solid ground component, despite being known by for its throws and leg sweeps. I remember learning a scarf hold when i was about eight-years-old. I've never forgotten it, and never stopped believing its effectiveness in controlling an opponent (more damaging joint manipulation or chokes can be added to the basic technique if required). I also picked up a couple of standard defenses from high school wrestling classes that stay with me to this day.

And as my sensei has always stressed, most joint manipulations and choke techniques you can apply while standing, can be used as well on the ground.


  1. I totally agree!

    Ground techniques are good one to MMA and one a one fight, but there are not so good to self defense.

    Here at my city a teacher of Jiu Jitsu was severely injured by some assailants because he took to ground one of them. So the others beat him with a wood and so beat him more and more until he faint.

  2. Great post and nice brief breakdown of some of the arts. Your comments show how it's important to maintain an open mind and to realize styles don't matter as much as concepts. It's also interesting to see which techniques truly imprinted themselves on your brain.