Kenpo Ground Fighting

Discussion in 'Kenpo / Kempo - Technical Discussion' started by MJS, Dec 14, 2010.

  1. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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    [yt]dVC3Fnr5kB0[/yt]


    http://ltatum.com/movies/Week22/TipOfTheWeekMedW22.html


    Here are 2 clips of whats being called grappling or ground fighting, in Kenpo. My intent isn't to bash the guys in the clips, but instead, to analyze and discuss the clips. I'm looking to discuss things such as...

    What did you like/dislike about the clips?

    What would you do or have done differently?

    Do you think that the defenses that were presented were effective? Why/why not?

    Just a few things to get the ball rolling. :) You dont have to limit your replies to just those questions. And as always, this discussion is open to non Kenpoists as well. :)
     
  2. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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    Well, I'll start. :)

    1st clip: This IMO, isn't a Kenpo specific escape from the guard. I dont know about anyone else, but I've used the elbows to the inside of the legs, many times in a BJJ class. As for the lock at the end...I wasn't crazy about that. Personally, I'd have gone for a pass and transitioned to another position.

    2nd clip: This was an attempt at taking an upright tech. and trying to make it work on the ground. IMO, instead of trying to do that, I'd rather add in some grappling, instead of trying to adapt something upright to the ground. IMO, the tech itself probably would've had a different outcome, had the top guy been in a proper mount. If that were the case, I dont believe that the knee shot would have been as effective.

    What do I do differently? I cross train in BJJ. :D Take the basics, drill the hell out of them, and add in some Kenpo where its applicable. :) My intent isn't to stay on the ground any longer than necessary, but I do feel that knowing some submissions is important, should you not be able to get up as quick as you'd like. You may find a neck that presents itself for a choke, an arm that presents itself for a lock. May as well take advantage of them. :)
     
  3. seasoned

    seasoned MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Sorry, I know very little about grappling, I study mostly stand up. I wish I could help get the thread off and running for you. My only comment would be there is a critical time frame to respond to an attack, standing or on the ground. That would be during the entry period. Once someone has you locked in it could be all over. I personally would take my chances with what I know best, and stick with it, (striking). :asian: Thanks MJS....
     
  4. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    I don't have the necessary plug in in to see the web video you linked, but the one you embedded was interesting. I'll take another look and give some specifics.

    Okay: At :35 his posture is low and he has no base. Bottom guy, if competent, has chokes and sweeps available, and there's no way top guy can open the guard unless he first addresses his posture and base. If you're going to be low and stall like that, you have to control bottom guy's arms, usually at the elbow or bicep.

    :39 the guard opening. Using the elbows to the inner thigh is only going to irritate a grappler. Springing up as he does in order to load his elbow strike to the inner thighs raises his center of gravity and again is a great time for the bottom guy to sweep, like a hip bump or a scissor sweep.

    After that, I can't comment really. I honestly don't know why the bottom guy pretended to go unconscious.

    I'd say that this is a great example of what I've said in other threads. You don't have to train in BJJ, Wrestling, Judo, Sambo or any other grappling art if you don't want to. But if you want to know whether your techniques are practical, you should pressure test them at least periodically with a legit grappler. When you don't, you get knockouts from the inner thigh and lots of keeyups like this. :)
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  5. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Okay. I saw the second video. Once again, it's really impossible to critique is seriously because the uke was clearly an incompetent grappler. Can kenpo techniques work on the ground? Maybe. Can we tell from either of these videos? Nope.
     
  6. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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    Hey Steve,

    Thanks for your feedback. :) To address your posts...yes, I agree with the arm control. As for the elbows to the inner thigh/knee area...I think its effective providing that you do something from there. I've seen some people use that to escape, and then bring their knee/shin across one side, to begin an escape, usually a transition to side mount. Do you use that type of escape and if so, what are your results, what do you do differently?

    As for the last part of your first post...yup, can't disagree with that. :) I have taken alot of flack, and still do from some Kenpo people, but thats ok, they're entitled to their opinion, and if this is what they want to do, well, I think the end result will be obvious. LOL.

    As for the 2nd clip...yes, one of my pet peeves about that one is the mount basically sucked. Sometimes during rolling, I'll play around with various Kenpo techs, to see what I can find, if I can make something work, etc., and I've tried that knee to the butt, and it didn't work. Of course the guy went flying off in the clip, but get in a proper mount, and I found that you end up hitting with more of your thigh, just about the knee, and all the top guy had to do, was adjust slightly and it basically cancelled that knee out.
     
  7. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    For this, the first thing is you need proper posture and solid base. Bringing the knee up is the first step, and gets you to what we call "combat base" at my school. It's a good, stable position and the knee keeps bad guy on the bottom from closing his guard back up. (http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1433/794860603_f52ac9c290.jpg) from Aesopian's excellent website.

    The knee slide pass is also solid. There are several good ways to do it, but they all involve either controlling bad guy's hips or head. One or the other. Without controlling the hips or the head, you'll either fail to pass guard, get swept or find the bad guy is suddenly on your back.
    :) What are you going to do? Some people. Right? :D
    If a guy gets that high on me, I'll often just slide under the leg he has up, come out the back and see if I can take the back from there.

    For what it's worth, if you have a leg up like that, it can be a strong mount, but you typically want your down knee right behind his head, and the foot jammed in his armpit, with your hips low putting pressure on his chest. Think heavy. Then, when he reaches up you're in great shape to tear his arm off. :D
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  8. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Hey Mike,

    I'm in pretty much complete agreement with Steve on the first one there, there's again a complete lack of understanding of the environment present (the issue with being a specialist system again....). Although I would still say that serious grapplers are not a requirement to train against (realistic, intense, yes. But that's not necessarily a trained attacker), it is an incredibly good idea to get an understanding of the ground if you're going to teach about it.

    That said, even an untrained guy on the street won't act like the "attacker" does here. The two common things that our guy on the bottom (the one who has pulled guard) would do, with no training, is to either try to keep distance by pushing you away with their legs, or pull you in tight. The reason is simple, it stops you being able to hit them (and before we get to him being the "attacker", being on your back like that, with someone above you, tends to put people in a "defensive" mind set). If their holding him back, then the guy on top isn't going to get his elbows in the way he does here. If being held in, then it will be incredibly difficult to get the seperation the defender requires to put the elbows in as well. So that part is not very well done.

    The foot hold/strike to the inside of the knee, well, I can see the principle being used, but it's not very realistic here. As Steve said, it's rather open to far too many things, and doesn't take into account the realities of how people actually act/react.

    As to the second one, how would you feel about my posting the PM that I sent in answer to that before?
     
  9. punisher73

    punisher73 Senior Master

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    I think it's important also to distinguish between ground fighting and grappling. In kenpo, the point is to get an escape and get back to the feet as quickly as possible.

    That being said, as Steve pointed out you need to understand the basics of ground positioning etc. before you can escape safely.

    I have VERY limited grappling experience and one of the first things that popped into my head after he did the elbow escape was when he talked about the other leg coming back up is that with his bad posture if the bottom guy secured an arm he was in danger of being caught in a triangle choke or moving the hips and getting arm barred.

    I think that if things like that are shown it should be prefaced with "these are some simple escapes if you find yourself on the ground by an inexperienced person, you will need a deeper understanding against a trained grappler"
     
  10. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    On a slightly different note, it would seem to me that the most valuable training for someone not intending to be a specialist is from the bottom. Chris' comment about who is really attacking and who is defending is spot on. How to create space from the bottom and get back up would be the first things I'd teach a self defense class. If you're not well versed on the ground that's exactly where you're likely to find yourself.

    While the techniques in the second video were unrealistic, I'll give him props for trying to demonstrate this.
     
  11. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    For whatever reason I was unable to see the second video clip. As for the first clip it is hard to argue with Steve's initial post. So many glaring errors like not controling the arms, having your eyes right up by the opponents hands, no base and easily swept, the elbow drive to the thigh will work against someone with no training but not somone with even a month of BJJ, MMA, Sambo, Judo, etc. In other words if the other guy knows something and has trained a little and has even an ounce of mental will power and adrenaline flowing it probably will not work. Not to excited about the leg lock at the end either! I may be sounding like a broken record lately but if you want to learn grappling why not take the time and go learn from a qualified instructor in wrestling, sambo, MMA, BJJ, etc. That way you can at least get good fundamental core basics and you can then modify and work with your existing system. Makes perfect sense and you will not end up with shoddy crappling! [​IMG]
     
  12. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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    Good points.


    LOL, I know. Actually, there is one person, a Kenpo guy, who comes to mind, that has quite a few YT clips of both Kenpo and grappling. Amazing how he can transition so nicely. :) YT is on the no-no list here at work, but I'll post a few later on. I'm sure the differences will be obvious. :)

    Good point. You could probably shrimp out as well, and get guard, no?

    :D
     
  13. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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    Nice. :) Regarding the underlined part....couldn't agree more, and this is what I'm always saying when I'm debating with other Kenpo folks. Now, going on what you said, and maybe I'm just not reading right, so while you're saying that its not necessary to train against serious grapplers, you still feel that its important to work with a grappler to get an understanding of how they operate?



    Will do. Just have to find it. :)

    Well, that was easy to find. Here is the reply you sent to me regarding that 2nd clip, that we discussed a while back.


     
  14. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Hey Mike,

    I think that you need to train against what you are going to face (concievably). BJJ trains to face BJJ practitioners (in competition), so their training is geared towards being successful against a trained grappler. Our training isn't geared towards that, so training against such is honestly little more than a waste of our time (note, I am not saying that it's without benefits, just that the benefits, weighed up against the needs, makes it time better spent on other things). So training against serious, skilled grapplers isn't necessary.

    What is incredibly useful, if you are going to recognise that something like the ground (as an environment) is a possibility, even a likelihood, then it is important to understand that environment (note here, this comes down to the reason you are training. If it is for the skills of the system, mastery if you will, within it's parameters, then understanding things outside of the arts norm is not necessary. For example, I also train in a Kenjutsu system. The reasons for training in this system are about continuing the legacy and tradition of the art, perfecting the movements of the art, transmitting it properly with a sense of history, and so on. For this training, looking to "fill holes" to the training by adding things like groundfighting makes no sense, as it's not part of the reasons you train in that art. In my classical training and teaching, it's not a part of it. However, it certainly has to make an appearance in the modern self defence, or "street" aspect).

    In order to understand it, go to someone who already understands it. This is part of why I trained in BJJ myself, simply to understand the environment (there were other reasons, but they're less important here). So it wasn't really to learn how a serious grappler works, it was more to understand the environment. When we do ground work, it's Ninjutsu, not BJJ. And it's trained against the types of attacks/situations that are most likely for us to find ourselves in.
     
  15. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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  16. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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    Hey Chris,

    As always, great reply. :) While I do like to have something to fall back on, in this case, BJJ, I do like to take my Kenpo techs, that're defenses against various grappling type attacks, and make them work against the grappler, while still (hopefully) maintaining some sort of Kenpo flavor to them. If my plan A starts to fail, I'll have B to fall back on. I'll do the same thing with the weapon techs especially the knife stuff. My Arnis teacher is also a BB in Kenpo, so many times, during a lesson, we'll play with the Kenpo knife stuff, and keeping the Arnis stuff in mind, see if we can find any holes, issues, potential problems, etc., with the Kenpo stuff and what we can do to fix it.

    IMO, it sounds like we're pretty much on the same road, more or less, but I may be drifting to the side streets from time to time. LOL. :)
     
  17. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Better. The mount escape is solid and I like how he's up on his side and framing to create space, although getting under the top guys leg isn't quite as easy as he made it look. While he might not sneak out, that's a solid way to get back to at least half guard, and if he stays up on his side, he'll have some options.

    At 1:30 or so, that's commonly referred to as a tripod sweep and is also very solid. I use that all the time. Some things he does that I don't like, but I think he's trying to make it look easy, is he's not controlling at least one of his opponent's arms. If you don't, the foot he has on the hip is asking for trouble. Top guy can attack the ankle or simply shuck it across and pass the guard.

    Relevant to the thread though, is that this isn't Kenpo used on the ground. Those are techniques that most BJJ blue belts will be familiar and comfortable with.
     
  18. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

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    Yeah, while there may be some iffy things, for lack of better words, I think its a better display.

    True, and now that you mention it, I have to wonder....was this his intent? I mean, it could be that he just wanted to do half Kenpo/half BJJ or could it be that he feels that trying to do Kenpo techs on the ground is fruitless, so may as well show something that'll have more chance to success?

    On a side note, James used to be a member here, but I believe his acct. is currently closed. I see him from time to time on KenpoTalk. Who knows, maybe he'll pop back on over here. :)
     
  19. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    :) I wouldn't say iffy. Overly optimistic, maybe. :) The basic concepts are sound, and that's what's important. Framing, controlling the inside space, improving position.
    Cool.
     
  20. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Hey Mike,

    Yeah, James stuff is definately better. He actually reminds me a bit of Charles Daniel (in his teaching style), so that was fun!

    Like Steve, there were one or two things that had me going "uh, hang on a sec..." (such as the initial escape from the mount. The escape itself was fine, but by not trapping one of the arms and moving towards it, it left it rather open for the guy on top to post out, preventing the escape, which is a fairly natural thing to do. I'd catch at least one of the arms as they came out on the initial buck, for instance), but there is much better understanding of the ground as an environment, as well as what is and is not realistically possible.

    With regard to Steve's point about this not being "Kenpo", but just techniques that any BJJ Blue Belt should know, I'm not sure I 100% agree with that. The mechanics may be similar to the point of being identical, but the reasons for employing them, and the tactical use of them are what makes something Kenpo, or BJJ. If he's employing things like the tripod sweep to switch position, gain the mount, and continue the ground game, that's very much BJJ. If he's doing it to maintain distance from an assailant who is bearing down on him, enabling him to continue in a stand-up fashion, then it "becomes" Kenpo. It's all down to why things are done, and how they are expressed. For example, I saw a lot of things that I could say aren't Kenpo, just because we have them too (a very Ganseki-type throw appeared at least twice, Musha Dori/Gyoja Dori elbow lift, Hon Gyaku , refered to as an "S" Lock....), but they are also a part of Kenpo. The mechanics don't make the art, in the end.
     

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