Has MMA popularity helped or hurt the MA Community?

The popularity of the MMA has

  • Mostly helped the MA Community

  • Mostly hurt the MA Community

  • Helped and hurt in roughly equal measures

  • No relevance to me


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exile

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Heh no not yet, but Ive seen enough on the Irish boards forum. It gets very very silly :)
English scene seems pretty similar to the Irish one, but one of my "home-boys" had the dubious pleasure of informing me he found the American MMA scene to be most "wack".

I get the feelingand this has been remarked on in other threadsthat there's a kind of intense factional hostility in the US MA scene that isn't present in a lot of other Western countries (remember the infamous dojo/dojo punchups in the 1960s, which someone raised in one of the KMA threads a few weeks backthe whole narrative premise of The Karate Kid and any number of Walker, Texas Ranger episodes?). It occurred to me that maybe one reason for all that is that when Asian countries began exporting their MAs, via expatriate instructors trying to make a living and US servicemen returning home from posts in the Far East who had trained in local MAs, the rivalries between MA schools that were a feature of dojo/dojang culture were brought back, and reenacted in a sense on US soil. That may have injected into MA culture a kind of aggressive preoccupation with system purity, lineage, who betrayed who, and so on that isn't nearly as evident, from what Tez and others have suggested elsewhere, in the UK scene. The evolving MMA world would pick up on that... not that it doesn't happen elsewhere, but it seems to have the greatest intensity and toxicity hereabouts...
 

xTNVx NirVana

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To be honest, regardless of what art the MMA players have trained in, I don't think it really reflects anything about the arts.
Exactly. You don't focus on one style, like USSD (Kenpo) or most other schools. I know many people just do MA today to be physically fit these days too though, which is seen in every school, but much more in MMA schools. I go to USSD, and the low ranked belts only care about being fit, but when you get to a high rank starting usually at green belt, they are serious about MA, and they don't do it to be fit- there's too much to learn and it's too serious. In MMA, they don't focus on challenging techniques (From what I've heard), so you could be a 4th degree black belt and not give a crap about MA, you just want to be fit.
 

Shotgun Buddha

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In MMA, they don't focus on challenging techniques (From what I've heard), so you could be a 4th degree black belt and not give a crap about MA, you just want to be fit.

I'd love to know where you heard that. MMA tends to be gross-motor skill based than most MA, and the techniques are commonly drilled with resistant opponents and through free-sparring.
So while the techniques are themselves straightforward, the manner in which they are drilled is intensely challenging.
So no, its not just about the fitness ;)
 

PictonMA

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Anything that gets people out of their normally sedentary ways and into a gym / dojo / dojang and actually training, becoming physically active (and hopefully learning something valuable) is a good thing.

Anything that elevates the standard or increases the expectation of what is being offered is a good thing.

TMA isn't for everyone, MMA isn't for everyone, the creation of options and an awareness that there are options is a good thing.

And for those of us that love TMA and MMA - it's a GREAT thing.

***

The only negative I see is the over-representation of the 'bad-boy' attitude in MMA, it gets old.
 

TraditionalTKD

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MMA has been very bad for martial arts in two aspects:

1. Your average MMA learns enough kicking, boxing, and grappling to get into a ring and fight. I've seen MMA fighters on TV, and for the most part, all they want to is box and grapple. The fighting is really not very good. In fact, I can only watch a typical Pride/K-1/UFC match for a few minutes before I get really bored. Aside from bad boxing and kicking, the ground fighting is essentially two guys waiting for each other to make a bad move.

2. Traditional MA is based on respect, manners, and listening to your Instructor. So what happens is people want to learn martial arts because they see MMA guys on TV or read about them. Then when they find out they actually to be patient, have respect for their teacher, and listen, they don't want to do it because the MMA guys don't do it. Why should you follow traditional MA etiquette and manners when these UFC guys get away with not doing it? Then, when you emphasize these points, they look at you like their offended they should even have to.
 

Shotgun Buddha

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MMA has been very bad for martial arts in two aspects:

2. Traditional MA is based on respect, manners, and listening to your Instructor. So what happens is people want to learn martial arts because they see MMA guys on TV or read about them. Then when they find out they actually to be patient, have respect for their teacher, and listen, they don't want to do it because the MMA guys don't do it. Why should you follow traditional MA etiquette and manners when these UFC guys get away with not doing it? Then, when you emphasize these points, they look at you like their offended they should even have to.

What on earth makes you think there's no etiquette in MMA? Numerous individuals still bow upon entering the ring, or bow to the opponent. Fighters with a Muay Thai background commonly perform the rituals of their art prior to fight.
Fighters from more Western styles still shake hands or touch gloves prior to a fight, and after the fight will often show a great deal of respect to each other.
So, there is still a strong element of etiquette, manners, and respect in MMA. It just may take a different form than the one you espouse yourself. Perhaps if you were to explain it in that manner, students would be more receptive to it?
 

Adept

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1. Your average MMA learns enough kicking, boxing, and grappling to get into a ring and fight.

If you want to play that card, then it is equally fair to say that most traditional martial artists simply learn a few kata, and learn the basic techniques required to point-spar.

Obviously, both statements are generalisations. Many MMA fighters are very competent martial artists, as are many TMA fighters.

2. Traditional MA is based on respect, manners, and listening to your Instructor.

I disagree. Traditional martial arts are based on the study of violence on a personal level. Respect, manners and listening to your superiors are the hallmarks of a well raised person, and are completely seperate things to martial arts. A person can be an excellent martial artist and still be rude, arrogant and over-bearing, while at the same time being well mannered, polite and respectful does not make one a good martial artist.

So what happens is people want to learn martial arts because they see MMA guys on TV or read about them. Then when they find out they actually to be patient, have respect for their teacher, and listen, they don't want to do it because the MMA guys don't do it. Why should you follow traditional MA etiquette and manners when these UFC guys get away with not doing it? Then, when you emphasize these points, they look at you like their offended they should even have to.

The problem here is they have enrolled in the wrong style of class. These people obviously would have been more at home in an actual MMA gym, or a boxing or wrestling gym than a TMA school.

The problem is not that these people are inferior, or that their views and opinions are wrong. Simply that they have gone looking in the wrong places to find what they want.

I think the MMA have been very good for the martial arts in general. Anything that causes people to question what they are doing is a good thing.
 

TraditionalTKD

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Some others raised a valid point why they dislike MMA as well:
As far as MMA fighters are concerned, their way is the ONLY way. To them, non MMA styles are absolutely useless and getting into the ring or cage is the only way to prove that your art is superior. This is fascism pure and simple, because to defend your art is to invite their wrath and contempt. I don't practice judo or karate, but I also respect your right to practice them and see their benefits. As far as MMA fighters are concerned, if you are not a MMA fighter, you're wasting your time.

And viewing fighting as what it's all about is very one dimensional. Real martial arts are much more than simply being able to fight. Because if fighting were all it's about, you wouldn't need the -Do arts just get into the ring or cage and go at it.
 

Adept

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Some others raised a valid point why they dislike MMA as well:
As far as MMA fighters are concerned, their way is the ONLY way. To them, non MMA styles are absolutely useless and getting into the ring or cage is the only way to prove that your art is superior. This is fascism pure and simple, because to defend your art is to invite their wrath and contempt. I don't practice judo or karate, but I also respect your right to practice them and see their benefits. As far as MMA fighters are concerned, if you are not a MMA fighter, you're wasting your time.

Thats one of the reasons I like it.

I hasten to point out that over-bearing holier-than-thou MMA types are certainly no fun, and the resulting internet flame wars are largerly a waste of time.

However, the MMA stance of 'If you think it works, prove it' encourages everyone to ask themselves 'well, will what I do actually work when I need it?'. Obviously this doesn't mean you have to get in the octagon or the ring and try it out, but it does mean you should always question the efficacy of your techniques and training methods, which is something I think a lot of TMA people had stopped doing, and many still aren't doing.

And viewing fighting as what it's all about is very one dimensional. Real martial arts are much more than simply being able to fight. Because if fighting were all it's about, you wouldn't need the -Do arts just get into the ring or cage and go at it.

It's not just fighting. It's the study of violence. Manners and respect are nice, but they are something you should learn from your parents, not your MA instructor.
 

Andrew Green

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Some others raised a valid point why they dislike MMA as well:
As far as MMA fighters are concerned, their way is the ONLY way. To them, non MMA styles are absolutely useless and getting into the ring or cage is the only way to prove that your art is superior. This is fascism pure and simple, because to defend your art is to invite their wrath and contempt. I don't practice judo or karate, but I also respect your right to practice them and see their benefits. As far as MMA fighters are concerned, if you are not a MMA fighter, you're wasting your time.

And viewing fighting as what it's all about is very one dimensional. Real martial arts are much more than simply being able to fight. Because if fighting were all it's about, you wouldn't need the -Do arts just get into the ring or cage and go at it.

And viewing MMA fighters as if that is what we are all about is equally one dimensional is it not?

You seem to be making some pretty sweeping generalizations about MMA, and while it may apply to some it certainely does not apply to all. Either that or you should also accept that TKD is a shallow copy of karate, its practitioners do watered down versions of the Okinawan forms and there fighting is limited to bouncing around throwing kicks without any use of there arms or knowledge of grappling whatsoever.

See, we MMA folks can apply stereotypes too ;)
 

TraditionalTKD

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Actually, there is nothing in the WTF rules that states fighters cannot punch. However, the way the fights go makes it very difficult to do so most of them don't. There is a difference between not being allowed to punch (we are), and it being very difficult to based on how they fight. All things considered, there aren't that many rules. Certainly not that different from what others do. You can't kick to the groin, poke the eyes, bite, or sweep the legs in the name of safety. We're not trying to hurt each other.
And I've seen plenty of fighters get knocked out because they had their hands down.
 

Andrew Green

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I think you have completely missed the point of my post. It had nothing to do with rules, but if you want to go that way MMA has far fewer, it had to do with making sweeping generalizations about an entire style and its practitioners.
 
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kidswarrior

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the MMA stance of 'If you think it works, prove it' encourages everyone to ask themselves 'well, will what I do actually work when I need it?'. Obviously this doesn't mean you have to get in the octagon or the ring and try it out, but it does mean you should always question the efficacy of your techniques and training methods, which is something I think a lot of TMA people had stopped doing, and many still aren't doing.

To me, this is the value of MMA for the MA community in general. We TMA's must ask, If that guy in the ring did that on the street, how would/could I counter or avoid? And if there's nothing legitimate in my toolbox now (doesn't mean it's not in the art, but maybe I just don't have the tool), how can I remedy that?
 

Shotgun Buddha

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Some others raised a valid point why they dislike MMA as well:
As far as MMA fighters are concerned, their way is the ONLY way. To them, non MMA styles are absolutely useless and getting into the ring or cage is the only way to prove that your art is superior. This is fascism pure and simple, because to defend your art is to invite their wrath and contempt. I don't practice judo or karate, but I also respect your right to practice them and see their benefits. As far as MMA fighters are concerned, if you are not a MMA fighter, you're wasting your time.

And viewing fighting as what it's all about is very one dimensional. Real martial arts are much more than simply being able to fight. Because if fighting were all it's about, you wouldn't need the -Do arts just get into the ring or cage and go at it.

Wow. Godwins Law in action- As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one.

Ok first off, how is facism? If you are still in a position where you can voice a complaint about it safely, then its clearly not facism. Were it facism the MMA police would even now be bursting down the door, dragging you from your bed and silencing you forever for your heinous internet crimes.
Now I would like you to note, the clear lack of balaclava clad men raiding your home. This in itself should tell, no its not really facism, pure and simple.

Second, how many MMA practioners have you actually talked to? You're attemtping to paint a picture of a grim conspiracy of MMA fighters, who all train the exact same way, and dismiss anything different.
Thats not just innacurate, its actually completely misunderstanding MMA.
There is no one MMA style. It is a composite, made up other styles. That particular make up varies wildy depending on the club. In some clubs its a mixture of Muay Thai, Wrestling and Brazilian Jujitsu. In mine, its a mix of Kyokushin Karate, Boxing, Judo and Submission Grappling.
So to say MMA dismisses other styles is ludricous, when the very nature of MMA is to mix styles, and pressure test your styles against others.

Third, real martial arts? You just prior gave out about how MMA doesn't consider other stuff real, yet here you are doing the exact same thing, dismissing it as not a "real" martial art, because it doesn't follow your way of doing things. Tad hypocritical don't you think?
You learn discipline in MMA. You learn strength and control in MMA. You learn respect in MMA. You learn dedication in MMA.
But these are things you learn from training, not from talking about them.
And thats the key thing here, these are all qualities present in MMA, but we don't feel any need to make a big deal out of them the way others might, since they're so obvious a part of what we do.
 

Kyoshi71

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I believe it has certainly hurt the Martial Arts Community. Now, all martial arts used in self defence are being measured by how their practitioners perform in the octagon.

I think that the octagon fighters are great and it takes a certain type of person to get in there. However, comparing a ring-style competition to an actual self-defense scenario is apples to oranges.
 

Kyoshi71

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Wow. Godwins Law in action- As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one.

Ok first off, how is facism? If you are still in a position where you can voice a complaint about it safely, then its clearly not facism. Were it facism the MMA police would even now be bursting down the door, dragging you from your bed and silencing you forever for your heinous internet crimes.
Now I would like you to note, the clear lack of balaclava clad men raiding your home. This in itself should tell, no its not really facism, pure and simple.

Second, how many MMA practioners have you actually talked to? You're attemtping to paint a picture of a grim conspiracy of MMA fighters, who all train the exact same way, and dismiss anything different.
Thats not just innacurate, its actually completely misunderstanding MMA.
There is no one MMA style. It is a composite, made up other styles. That particular make up varies wildy depending on the club. In some clubs its a mixture of Muay Thai, Wrestling and Brazilian Jujitsu. In mine, its a mix of Kyokushin Karate, Boxing, Judo and Submission Grappling.
So to say MMA dismisses other styles is ludricous, when the very nature of MMA is to mix styles, and pressure test your styles against others.

Third, real martial arts? You just prior gave out about how MMA doesn't consider other stuff real, yet here you are doing the exact same thing, dismissing it as not a "real" martial art, because it doesn't follow your way of doing things. Tad hypocritical don't you think?
You learn discipline in MMA. You learn strength and control in MMA. You learn respect in MMA. You learn dedication in MMA.
But these are things you learn from training, not from talking about them.
And thats the key thing here, these are all qualities present in MMA, but we don't feel any need to make a big deal out of them the way others might, since they're so obvious a part of what we do.

I agree with you. Leave the Nazis and Fascism out of a friendly discussion.
 

Shotgun Buddha

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I believe it has certainly hurt the Martial Arts Community. Now, all martial arts used in self defence are being measured by how their practitioners perform in the octagon.

I think that the octagon fighters are great and it takes a certain type of person to get in there. However, comparing a ring-style competition to an actual self-defense scenario is apples to oranges.

Heh, actually they're being measured by your ability to perform them regularly against a resisting opponent. That doesn't mean getting in the ring, it means pressure testing. After all, if you can't perform the techniques against a resisting opponent in a controlled environment, what makes you think you could perform them in an uncontrolled one?
Thats an open question, not aimed at you in specific.
 
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kidswarrior

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Heh, actually they're being measured by your ability to perform them regularly against a resisting opponent. That doesn't mean getting in the ring, it means pressure testing. After all, if you can't perform the techniques against a resisting opponent in a controlled environment, what makes you think you could perform them in an uncontrolled one?

As I said earlier, as a TMA guy this is the key thing that MMA provides. I don't feel the need to test my strategy and techniques in any MMA setting, but I do want to know they have a chance of working against a resisting, unpredictable opponent. Doesn't mean anyone has to agree with me :ultracool. Just MHO of what's good for myself and my students.
 
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