Saturday, November 18, 2006

Dose of Reality

Why Train in Goggles
Notice the goggles? Fashion statement? No, a dose of reality.

As I've mentioned before, one of the benefits of the current MMA trend is more grappling, but one of the problems with the current MMA trend is too much grappling. Too many who train this way (BJJ, or any other sport-grappling) think that sport techniques are applicable to self-defense, when some of the techniques you learn could get them hurt or killed outside the competitive arena.

As we've started to integrate more BJJ/MMA-type techniques into our arsenal, I've been diligent in pointing out what I think won't work.Case in point: today, on the frozen tundra of the parking lot behind the station, Sam and I were working on ground fighting (as opposed to grappling). During every round of this, while on top (he was either in the top mount, inside my guard, or side mount), Sam attempted a sport-type technique. During every one of those instances, when his face got within range, my thumbs found his goggles and I'd tap on them, signaling I had an eye gouge on him. In case you don't know, we wear goggles during sparring. Please see this post for the reasons. He did get an armbar submission on me, but it was from side mount and his face wasn't available.

Basically, any tactic which doesn't account for the eye gouge or biting is either pretty shaky, or junk. Think I'm wrong? Try it. Get some goggles and a mouthpiece and go to town. Let me know (comments welcome).

UPDATE: Here is an example of a sport technique that we put to the test: the dreaded Hell Hook! I mean heel hook. Check it out.

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