Wake-up Call: Takedowns=Fighting Ability

Freestyler777

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I know this is kind of ridiculous coming from someone who doesn't even engage in streetfighting, but of all the fights I witnessed when I was in 'a bad place' they all began in the clinch and ended with a takedown, sometimes 'tori' would throw 'uki' on his head!

In this 'bad place', where i spent 8 months, I saw at least one fight per week, and it was all rather similar. Angry words, the two combatants grab each other, and then the inevitable throw to the floor. No Kickboxing, people don't politely circle and jab, and no thirty minute groundfights that end with a choke or armlock. If this streetfighting resembled any sport, I would say Greco-roman Wrestling and Judo are the only two that even remotely fit the bill.

The obsession with MMA, which is merely modern pankration, will pass, as all things do. You can't make money off of wrestling and judo, they're amateur sports primarily, so people will erroneously go after fads that have their beginnings and ends. It's rather depressing.

From what I have observed, I would deduce that wrestling, sambo, and judo are the best martial arts, since their main focus is takedowns and pins, and that kickboxing and submission grappling are worthless in this world or the next.

If the people involved in kickboxing or submission grappling put a tenth of that time and effort into something productive, like volunteerism, creative expression, or even studying, I think the world would improve tenfold.

My point is, fighting is for retarts, wrestling and judo is self defense, and people are wasting a lot of precious time doing things that don't even matter in the grand scheme of things.

And don't give me bs about 'completeness'. 'Completeness' is not an indicator of what is important in real combat. 'Effectiveness' is. And takedown sports are both safe, and 'quick kill' which means they take seconds to take effect, not 12 rounds or thirty minutes or an hour.

And I'm sure a few karate purists will get angry at this post, and say that wrestling and judo are just scholastic sports, but I will refer you to Lao Tzu who said, 'That the soft can overcome the hard, and the gentle overcome the rigid- few in the world can realize this!" Takedown sports are fun, healthy, a good social activity, a teacher of positive sportsmanlike values, and the best self-defense.

"No secret techniques from the Orient, only hard work!" -Doug Rogers, 1964 Silver Medalist in Judo. I think that just about says it all.
 
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Freestyler777

Freestyler777

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A state mental hospital. Before you assume that I am a babbling retart, let me pre-inform you that the majority of the people fighting where either criminals who elected to go to the hospital rather than jail (although they found out later that some say it is worse than jail) or just useless hobos. These were not martial artists, these were people who fight in the street often. Streetfighters are a better indication of what goes on in real streetfights, than any martial artist or athlete, because criminals actually fight.

I saw men vs men, women vs women, men vs women, Staff versus Patients, you name it!

One time, A therapy aide named Timmy threw this old black man Sammis with a perfect Osoto-gari and pinned him with knee on stomach. It was obvious in Timmy's face and in Sammis' innocence that Timmy was just dying to use his skills on someone, even a hapless victim like Sammis.

And that was one fight, I witnessed dozens. Most fights began in the clinch and ended with the uki falling down. The 'uki' usually gave up after being thrown down to the floor (horrible fighting spirit) or was too injured to continue.

I grant you these were not the big fish, but they were eye-opening enough to see that MA is largely hogwash.
 

CuongNhuka

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OK, just so you know, observations aren't that help full. Especially since Judo is heavily about this thing we "Karate Purists" called ground fighting. Yes there are many throws/sweeps/reaps taught in Judo, but the focus is on ground fighting.
Also, maybe these would be better to base your oppion off.



Both real Martial Artists. The second one debatable though. Anyways, I have anouther one, but it's been demaned inapporiate. It's a Long Fist guy knocking a dude out.

By the way, if you ever say anything is retarded (Martial or not), you will regret it. Meaning you will be the first to get negitive rep from me. I don't care what narrrow minded, half baked ideas you have come up with from watching mental patients (crimminals or not) going at it. There are plently of street fight videos out there where it's one dude beating on (not throwing) another dude.
 
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Andy Moynihan

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A state mental hospital. Before you assume that I am a babbling retart, let me pre-inform you that the majority of the people fighting where either criminals who elected to go to the hospital rather than jail (although they found out later that some say it is worse than jail) or just useless hobos. These were not martial artists, these were people who fight in the street often. Streetfighters are a better indication of what goes on in real streetfights, than any martial artist or athlete, because criminals actually fight.

I saw men vs men, women vs women, men vs women, Staff versus Patients, you name it!

One time, A therapy aide named Timmy threw this old black man Sammis with a perfect Osoto-gari and pinned him with knee on stomach. It was obvious in Timmy's face and in Sammis' innocence that Timmy was just dying to use his skills on someone, even a hapless victim like Sammis.

And that was one fight, I witnessed dozens. Most fights began in the clinch and ended with the uki falling down. The 'uki' usually gave up after being thrown down to the floor (horrible fighting spirit) or was too injured to continue.

I grant you these were not the big fish, but they were eye-opening enough to see that MA is largely hogwash.


I don't think you're a "babbling retard" at all, Freestyler. I just wonder if being exposed to only one environment has created a limited view of what "fighting" is.

In this case you describe to me, where most of the people involved in the fights appear to go only on natural instinct because of no formal training, then, absolutely--apart from making/using weapons, humans' earliest form of fighting was to wrestle, before we even knew how to *fight*, we wrestled. Striking in a scienced manner came a bit later because , from a purely "Man vs. Wild" perspective, human bodies , compared to other natural creatures, are not optimized to be used as weapons--We don't have muscles and strength the way a gorilla or a yeti has muscles and strength, we don't have claws, we don't have jaws and teeth the way a bear, tiger, or crocodile has jaws and teeth. We don't have horns, we don't have natural armor the way a turtle, alligator or armadillo has--just a ribcage over our organs and a skull over our brain.

Our bodies aren't naturally optimized to be used as striking weapons, so it takes more training to GET them turned into striking weapons than to wrestle. That doesn't automatically render such training useless.

I'm not saying there isn't a disconnect between What goes on when things turn violent and what is taught in many MA schools, because there absolutely is, but I also believe you would be missing out if you discounted them all out of hand based on one reference point.

It could also be a case of guidelines set by the institution--My good friend's mother used to work in such a place, and they were taught several takedowns, joint locks and such but were repeatedly *told* never to strike. I don't know the rules for the specific place you refer to but it wouldn't surprise me if they were similar and it is possible this could account for any fights you saw between a staff member and a patient.

I happen to like takedowns a lot too--it's what I primarily train in now due to my Silat training. But having striking skills and a knowledge of what to hit and with which body part opens more avenues to me to GET to that takedown more easily. I've never met anyone willing to just let me walk right up and have my way with them, so being able to soften an attacker up/make something hurt so they have something else occupying their mind while I continue on into a takedown is an idea I find quite helpful.

The thing you have to remember when you enter a discussion of "this" is better than "that" with regards to striking arts/takedown arts/groundwork/whatever, is this:

Striking and grappling were never *intended* to be taught seperately. And back in the way-back-when, they weren't. The seperation took place largely in the late 19th/early 20th centuries because of several factors: The disappearance of the old ways of war in an age when gunpowder was rising in dominance, a desire to keep the old traditions and "fighting spirit" alive anyway, and certain teachers , due to their own preference/temperament/physical makeup, choosing to emphasize certain techniques and dropping others, and *BOOM* thus were born "styles".

So no, I don't think you are a "retard", I just think you haven't seen it all--you mention in that institution, most fights were decided by a takedown, I could mention that in the few bars I went into in my youth, most fights I saw were decided by punches to the head, according to the last few FBI Uniform Crime Reports, an average of about 8 out of every 10 streetfights involve weapons which changes the ENTIRE situation, and so on.

Don't be so quick to judge and dismiss.
 

Adept

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And I'm sure a few karate purists will get angry at this post,

Don't be silly. Why would I get angry? I'd just wait until some ground fighter took one of my buddies to the ground, and while he was lying there effectively immobile with his arms (and attention) occupied elsewhere, I'd beat him in the back of the head with a bar-stool.

It was very sporting of them to limit fights to one per side, and prohibit pre-emptive striking. Having worked as a bouncer, witnessing and participating in actual streetfights (often on an actual street!) I can tell you that the 'clinch' part of a fight is, while very important, not always (or even often) the initial stage of the fight.

It's very different working in a mental hospital, just as it is different working as a bouncer. Your job is to safely restrain (and /or remove) people, not beat them into unconsciousness, and so you will often have no choice but to grapple. In addition, as a civilian on 'the street', for lack of a better term, you can usually tell who is going to attack you. You can keep your distance, and certainly stay within striking range and avoid a clinch. I've certainly seen more 'one punch' fights, than I've seen clinches and take-downs.

I'd go so far as to say that clinches and takedowns are more prevalent among the untrained, simply because they don't know any better. 'Grab the other guy and hit him until he stops twitching' seems to be the extent of their game-plan. A natural result of this is that two untrained fighters who have entered a clinch will lose their balance, and simply fall over where a skilled fighter will engage his takedown defence (or go to the ground, if that is his preference) and fight on his own terms, or simply prevent his opponent from entering grappling range.

You are right though, in that a lot of martial arts schools teach BS. Not because they teach striking skills, but because they don't teach a well rounded skill set in an alive and resisting environment.
 
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Freestyler777

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Thank you Andy for a very well thought out and compassionate answer.

You bring up some interesting points.

Obviously striking with the hands is the main feature of trained marital artist's repertoire. I was more condemming MMA and combat sports in general, not martial arts.

And you are very insightful when you point out that wrestling is the 'natural' method of combat, and these were untrained fighters. Of the people I've asked outside the hospital, the majority of fights are won with punches, they've told me.

But I was right in saying very few fights entail a lot of jabbing, circling, or thirty minute ground fights. I often misuse terms. I was saying that COMBAT SPORTS are not realitic, traditional throwing arts like wrestling and judo, are the oldest and most natural method of unarmed combat. Obviously, there are karate guys who can kill with a single blow.


So I learned a lot from being in a state mental hospital, even if I didn't see the whole picture.
 

Bigshadow

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I grant you these were not the big fish, but they were eye-opening enough to see that MA is largely hogwash.

Yeah and at one time people believe the world was flat and that we were the center of the universe. I am sure they would have thought anything contradictory would have been hogwash. :shrug:
 

Garth Barnard

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The 'uki' usually gave up after being thrown down to the floor (horrible fighting spirit) or was too injured to continue.
I've seen, and been involved in, 100's of physical confrontations in my time, some whilst 'Minding', some personal scuffles, but most during my work as a Door Supervisor (Bouncer). I can honestly say that your statement (above) is not only untrue, but based on a observations made in a synthetic environment.

Your agument (read: sweeping statement) would be better substantiated (relevant) if your opinion was based on real world experience. For example; I've seen more people dropped by a right cross than any other technique.
 

Andy Moynihan

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Thank you Andy for a very well thought out and compassionate answer.

You bring up some interesting points.

Obviously striking with the hands is the main feature of trained marital artist's repertoire. I was more condemming MMA and combat sports in general, not martial arts.

And you are very insightful when you point out that wrestling is the 'natural' method of combat, and these were untrained fighters. Of the people I've asked outside the hospital, the majority of fights are won with punches, they've told me.

But I was right in saying very few fights entail a lot of jabbing, circling, or thirty minute ground fights. I often misuse terms. I was saying that COMBAT SPORTS are not realitic, traditional throwing arts like wrestling and judo, are the oldest and most natural method of unarmed combat. Obviously, there are karate guys who can kill with a single blow.


So I learned a lot from being in a state mental hospital, even if I didn't see the whole picture.


Okay....that helps clear up a *lot* about where you're coming from.

And yes, combat sports, by nature, have to be different from "combat" to a certain degree or they can't be safely enjoyed.

The main two things you can still take away from such a training format are a chance to experience resisting opponents you might not elsewhere, and consistent enough practice will give you increased fitness and the better your general health, the better your ability to resist injury and the more time it will take to reach exhaustion.

That's what makes Martial Arts so awesome is *everything* has something you can take and benefit from.
 
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Freestyler777

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Let me ask another question. Which art/sport/method is best? What is the most realistic martial art? Most martial artists and cops I've talked to say sambo, most med-taking/dubious background people say boxing, and I hear a lot about MMA on this and other message boards. Ive seen a lot of MMA on DVD and whatnot. Which is most realistic? Or is it a combination of things, like Muay Thai and Wrestling, or karate and jiu-jitsu, etc...?
 

Andy Moynihan

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This might end up going to General Martial Arts talk, and I am sorry to the Karateka here for the minor subject drift, but I think it's worth answering best I can:

So, Freestyler, in order to answer *that* question, you have to answer *these* :

*what is my current/previous training? (if you're already training enough that a certain way of moving has become more "natural" to you, keep it and build on it)

*If I have no training, what is my physical makeup? ( are you a relatively tall, skinny person who may have the long limbs, and thus the reach, that a striking approach might help you? Are you more of a stocky person, maybe your legs and back are thick and strong such that lifting/throwing a person would be easier for you? and so on)

* What is my temperament?( Are you someone who takes your time, likes to react to an incoming attack? something like Aikido, Jujutsu Taijiquan, or similar might be for you. Are you a go-get-em hard charger? like to stay on offense? Boxing/Kickboxing, Muay Thai, many types of Karate, and so on could be for you. You might even find a style you never thought you'd like or would match with you, DOES match with you--it sounds like metaphysical nonsense, but if a style doesn't "click" right with who and what you are, it may not be as effective when it's go time, however hard you train at it.)

*Am I of a legal/mental capacity where I can handle using/training in weapons? ( The only thing that raised humans above the other animals in Nature was our ability to think along the lines of making tools. That means weapons have always been humans' first choice for fighting, which therefore means you should be alert for them, and know them yourself, if you can. Don't break the law, but learn what you can.)


You don't have to answer these questions to me, just save them and think about them.
 
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Freestyler777

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Thanks again Andy.

I think I will finally take up boxing/Muay Thai with my old friend Ray.

For a long time, I've trained in judo, and sometimes BJJ, but both never went well with my extensive wrestling experience. It seemed like the idea didn't fit the reality of what I can do. I'll go to boxing or muay thai, it's never too late, and even though I am not tall, I have excellent reach and agility standing up.

Thank you for taking so much time to talk to me, Andy.
 

Mark L

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Andy and Adept, among others, both make excellent points. My reaction to your observations is similar to others, you've witnessed (perhaps) experienced fighters but maybe not trained fighters. I've been practicing for quite a while, and one of the most illustrative practices in our dojo is to periodically gather all of the students and have a sparring/grappling/MMA/weapons battling night. The perspective offered by such encounters is eye opening to most participants. We apply random match-up criteria: sometimes rank, or size, or fitness level, experience, or the whim of the ring master (who can be the boss or the newest student). My experience is that the folks who I learn the most from engaging are those that haven't been training for long. Experienced karate/grappling guys vs. experienced karate/grappling guys is fun & interesting, but nothing new under the sun. Matching against an opponent that hasn't been conditioned yet to fight like us offers surprises.

The last time we did this I got an extremely fit, long limbed, LEO who'd been with us for about 6 months. As a beginner I hadn't seen him yet. He didn't move like he was supposed to, he jabbed me and pawed me all over the ring for about 30 seconds. What the hell was going on with this? Quickly tiring of playing defense, I took the opportunity to demonstrate the relative lengths of legs vs. arms. The takeaway for me is that while I was able to turn the tables on the guy, he offered an entirely unexpected challenge. And taking 30 seconds to adjust just ain't cuttin' it. It was the best class I've had all year.
 

Mark L

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I submitted my last post before I could finish my thought ...

So watching and learning from what you see and experience, regardless of the source, is of value to a martial artist. The difference that I'm striving for is the ability to recognize (more quickly) what's going on, and using my training, thwart it before it can cause me harm.
 
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Freestyler777

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Mark L., thank you.

That is quite a good, but strict, school you go to! Being matched against anybody at random must be very nerve-racking! Even wrestlers only compete against people their own size! Your school has a very good training methodology. It accounts for the randomness of varous attackers' sizes and strengths.
 

Wild Bill

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I work in a prison. I don't see a lot of throws and not much clenching either. I do see a lot of wild undisciplined punches.
 
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