Strategy and Tactics in Fight Sports

Discussion in 'Standup Technique' started by Ilk, Sep 10, 2017.

  1. Ilk Orange Belt

    Ilk
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    I have a lot of time to read and not much to practice. I was looking for some good reads regarding that but could not find anything. I was wondering is not there some academic researches at the topic. I once got my hand on an academic write up regarding wrestling from a very old coach and although I do not understand wrestling that research looked like a pure gold. Very detailed backed up with research and examples. It was more fitness oriented though.

    So is there anyone that can share such studies regarding tactics and strategy.

    And let's talk about tactics and some good habits to learn.

    Here are some tactics I have learned trough my small experience in sports fighting:

    - level change on combos - body head body head. Obviously it is a good tactic.

    - study opponent with jabs, even make him guess your jab. In every spar session I made it a habit to start with lots of jabs the first round. My purpose was to see how he reacts. And it was a small tactic to which I will go back if I run out of ideas and to calm the tempo down. Obviously I am not a fighter and I do not compete, so that was a good way to escape. It consisted of jab to the face. Jab to the body. Right step and jab. Double jab, jab up and down, triple jab. It gave me an idea how I can trow the right hand after ward up or down. And it gave me the opportunity to fake the jab or the right hand after wards.

    - finish combos with the lead hand. Brings you to a natural defensive position.

    - counter with the hand that you just blocked with. Catches a jab, beat him down to the time he brings that jab back to defend. That shit even works if they try to double jab or jab hook. A little dangerous if they do 1-2. Blocked a cross, spam that jab or trow a hook. Or checked a low kick trow a left hook. All the example are given from an orthodox vs orthodox perspective.

    So what are such good tactics that you know?
     
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  2. TheBookofSpeed White Belt

    TheBookofSpeed
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    How about some very basic things that are often neglected:

    1. Rechamber as fast as you strike. This goes for kicks as well as hands.
    Put it back where you can use it immediately.
    2. Rechamber in a direct path. So many drop their hand on the way back.
    Many drop their foot vertically rather than rechambering.
    3. Control distance any time you can.
    4. Use angular movement. Most fighters (well, most average martial artists) fight like they are in a hallway.
    5. Never throw anything that doesn't have a purpose. It may not score, as in a fake or feint, but it has a purpose.
    6. Accuracy and timing are as important as power. Maybe more so.
    Hand speed and foot speed are useless if you can't apply it on target and at the correct distance and time.
    7. Use your opponent's movement against them any time possible.

    And the list goes on...
     
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  3. biscuitsbrah Black Belt

    biscuitsbrah
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    Don't waste strikes. So many times I pretend I'm going to engage and simply don't, or I stay just out of range. I believe a feel out process is very important, even in sparring.
     
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  4. TheBookofSpeed White Belt

    TheBookofSpeed
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    Right, like I said in #5 above, never throw anything that doesn't have a purpose. Pawing, feinting, fakes, and the like are fine if they have a purpose like feeling out, setting up, or frustrating your opponent. Otherwise, stay in chamber where they're useful.
     
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  5. j123 Pro Sherdogger 500-0-1

    j123
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    Tactics will always beat technique. You can have the most lame vertical hammer fist like in a shitty TMA tutorial, but you know how to execute and time it, you'll will your fights.

    Some tactics I like to use is to use my lead hand to touch/hold my opponent's arm. One its used as my range finder, and two, I can feel anything they do from that point on. Since I'm kinda of pushing with it, there's more effort on their end to do everything and it ends up being telegraphed. Weather its a cross, kick, overhand/hook, whatever.

    -If my opponent has a high guard, but its up there but not tight, I'll try to slip a jab or something in to make them keep it tight. Once tight, I can do (not sure what the official name is) this move where I pull their rear hand with my lead hand and strike from there. Usually I have a 2 and at the angle can rip them as well. The pull usually pulls them off balanced since they're still trying to brace and block from the previous strike.
    Basically, say we're orthodox, and based on my POV, I'd pull on arm on the right (their left) with kind of an outside grip using my left, land a 2,3 (body), kick. If their balance is crap the kick can sweep them out.

    -Retaliating ASAP, never letting my opponent get more than 3 strikes on me, I'm at the point where I pretty much counter back after 2 strikes on average.

    -If my opponent has a habit of parrying I'm pumping the jab and ending with a (not sure how to describe it) "blitz-in-cross", its a very heavy strike.

    -A basic bullshit combo: 1,2, inside leg kick x2. You set it up by doing it twice. Obviously you don't do it using the same rhythm and tempo all the time. Sell the kick so they feel its weak and they can counter with a straight

    they usually try to counter my inside kick with a cross, and on there:
    ...inside leg kick, step off to the inside + jammed cross

    When you step off on the inside, you slip their cross. your cross will be jammed, the angle you're at, you'll have to do it to hand, its gonna be an ugly hockey punch, but its a real heavy strike.

    Ring cutting
    -We've been taught to use the typical dutch walking forward tank/steamroller style. Personally I prefer it over someone that moves alot. When you take shots to your block and press forward it fucks with your opponent big time, to them they threw everything and nothing works while you shook it off and continue going forward. Guys that move and "point fight" don't have that intimidation to them, I've never felt threatened by them and can continue implementing my game.

    With all that said, if your style is similar, you use it to ring cut big time. Once you have your opponent in the corner/ropes, use these attacks depending on the direction they're trying to escape (based on your POV):
    -left: hooks
    -right: rear body kick

    Ideally it'd look something like...blah blah blah, they try to escape to your left: hook, kick, jab. The escape the other way: body kick, 3, 2. And repeat. Whatever you do, KEEP THEM THERE, make them work to escape. I know we train with our training partners and after a combo we ease up and give them a Hollywood runway to get out, don't do that. That's gonna happen in your fight. Make them work to escape, you're doing a disservice by letting them out easily when they won't get that opportunity on fight night.

    A couple of techniques to get out of the corner I like are:

    -Stiff arm while circling out
    -clinch up -> turn them + immediately knee
    Don;t wait, use kneeing as a way to open the pummel. Don't turn, pummel, then knee as three steps. The turn and knee happens almost in sync. When you turn correctly, they're basically off balanced, and the knee is gonna hurt them. Seal the double collar once that happens and do to town.

    It works great as well if your opponent is walking you down while clinching and you're near the wall/ropes, your turn almost ends up kinda like a sacrifice throw, and they fall right into the wall/ropes.
    -multiple hooks while circling out on the inside. You may eat a leg kick on the way out, but if you sell it right, they'll feel the threat and will only focus on blocking. It has to be quick, I'm not talking about throwing slow hooks, stop, then move. Its simultaneous. Throw hooks while you anchor your foot out, then pivot out to end up perpendicular or to opponent (or a better angle).

    So to pull it off it'd look something like, they get you on the ropes/wall, and want to pick you off from the outside:
    -(stiff) 1,2, 3-3-3 (as you angle out).

    Feeling:
    If on finishing your combos you feel your opponent is a tank and you're jammed, you take steps out to be out of their strike range, and you won't have jammed strikes.
    If your opponent did get hurt from your combo, walk them down and continue pressing.

    You'll learn to switch strikes as well, say you throw 1,2,3,kick and on the kick you know its gonna jam, throw the knee instead.
     
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  6. Ilk Orange Belt

    Ilk
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    Jeez J that was one hell of a post. Pure gold.

    Thanks to bisquit and book of speed too. I have been practicing rechambering mainly lately. Cause I can do that.at work even. Stand next to a wall and spam 1-2-1-2 or 2-1-2 combo and watch for the speed of the combo and where your hands rechamber. At some point I feel like flowing and at the right distance and even hitting the wall does not heart. If I can't flow I do a small jump and relax to get to a natural position, bring the hands up in a guard podition and repeat. Basically practicing some small combo, good guard ( I love the Andre Ward guard and stance ) and rechambering. Unfortunately that is.the.entire boxing practice I get for 3 months now and is going to last for 1 more month.

    I would like to ask about tactics regarding the cross. I am not sure why but I very often get hit when doing a cross unless it is a lead cross. That was a major problem for me and after some critique from Sano I even left my previous coach and signed boxing with a very good coach. We spend almost a month with him on that cross. He corrected the guard and the stance but that cross man still sucks. I seriously rather jab kick than jab cross. Or even jab get inside and then cross. Any ideas?
     
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  7. j123 Pro Sherdogger 500-0-1

    j123
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    Do you get hit with the cross in midst of a combo, or just when you're being still? I'm guessing this is from orthodox partners and not SP's, if it is, it takes time, I normally don't get hit, but against SPs I do get hit with the cross more often than normal people.
     
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  8. Ilk Orange Belt

    Ilk
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    Ye Orthodox. I meant when I trow the cross in a combo I usually get countered when I do it. I am not getting hit much to be honest but I spar mostly low skill people. The ones that hit me are mainly try hard full power people which I also try to punish. But I do get countered mainly when I trow the cross.

    Funny now you made me thinking I have easier time sparring Southpaws than Ortodox. It is easier to get angles on SP it seems and the low level SPs seems to not have good fight IQ to deal with angles. While it is much harder for me to get angles on Orthodox.
     
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  9. j123 Pro Sherdogger 500-0-1

    j123
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    Maybe you're telegraphing somehow, it could even be something as simple as your hand drops slightly before you throw the 2 or your tempo is monotonous before you fire off the 2.

    Are the people you frequently sparring against taller than you? And are you really over committing with your cross and ending up learning too far forward? (coming right into their strike range).
     
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  10. TheBookofSpeed White Belt

    TheBookofSpeed
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    This may be a little simplistic. My apologies if it is. I don't know your experience or skill level.

    A lot of guys that I've worked with get caught during the jab cross for two simple reasons when they are beginners or are carrying some bad habits.

    Often they are concentrating so hard on the jab that they simply don't execute the cross well. They deliver it as a two stage process instead of a single execution. The result is a time lag between the two and a poorly executed (slow or poorly timed or inaccurate) cross. When they become preoccupied with the jab they tend to let their other hand fall from chamber or get otherwise out of effective position.

    Other guys are so fixated on delivering a powerhouse cross that the jab is a formality. Instead of a jab that sets up the cross the jab just effectively adds time to the delivery of the cross. It's kind of like when I used to throw a double roundhouse with the first being a fake low. I would throw the fake so fast that it was often not seen. The result was just a slow roundhouse because of all of the wasted motion. A useless jab doesn't aid in effecting the cross. And, they are so intent on delivering power that they tense every muscle in their body throughout the delivery of the cross which kills their speed and power.

    The jab cross needs to be executed as a single strategy that culminates in the cross being placed where you've drawn your opening. Likewise you've hopefully created timing that allows you to transfer more power into your target while putting you in an advantageous (or at least effective) position whether you connect or not. Like in chess, you should be planning several moves ahead.
     
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  11. TheBookofSpeed White Belt

    TheBookofSpeed
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    There was a mass of great info in j123's post but this gem right here is where it goes of the rails for a lot of fighters. Knowing how to get out when you need to and pressing when you've got the advantage.

    It comes down to this. Don't let your opponent reset and get to a reset position when you are in trouble.

    Angles can be your friend, and they are so seldom used even by experienced fighters.
     
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  12. MaxMMA Blue Belt

    MaxMMA
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    What rule set are we talking about here?
     
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  13. j123 Pro Sherdogger 500-0-1

    j123
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    Thanks

    I think it depends on the style. Boxers I've noticed take angles much more than MT or other strikers do.

    I'm thinking it has to do with the importance of ring control being the major criteria in the judging. Because of that, every gym would train their guys to capitalize on it; Even if you take an angle and light the guy up, you could still potentially lose out because they ate it and continued pressing.

    Recently I've been playing around more with it, I've always used pivots, but it was secondary in my game plan.
     
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  14. TheBookofSpeed White Belt

    TheBookofSpeed
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    My goal with angles is to hopefully move out of the line of fire causing my opponent to advance into mine. They can be great for distance control. Of course, like you indicated, if my opponent anticipates or just follows my movement I just continue to be pressed. That's why I say angles "can" be your friend. As you know, nothing is 100%.

    I just know that angles, especially in your typical martial art sparring at your local dojo, is nearly unseen. You typically see them back up quickly allowing their opponent to continue to press. Often you even see them back directly up after scoring which allows their opponent to reset and advance on them. It's a big pet peeve of mine.

    And, like you indicated, it's just as important to train for dealing with an opponent who utilizes angles. Defense and offense.

    One big note with offensive angles is what happens when you misjudge and find yourself angling directly into a roundhouse kick... Oh well, stuff happens.
     
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  15. j123 Pro Sherdogger 500-0-1

    j123
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    Its a bit of an advanced step, its something to progress after footwork.
    Walking into a roundhouse happens. lol. A reason why I enjoyed footwork more against SP's when I started doing it. Even jabbing while moving to the outside feels very awkward, but its optimal.

    Alot of people actually don't know how to do proper footwork surprisingly. I've found some guys at my exp. level that still make errors like after retracting a kick, they retract too far and almost tight rope themselves.

    When I first started out, I didn't learn any footwork or proper shadow boxing until a year in, I did it informally via YouTube. Most of the time it was padwork, drills, etc. Then when I got paired up with a more exp'd training partner for his camp, he realized it was a huge issue and had me do nothing but footwork when I shadow boxed. It got alot better.

    To be fair I don't blame the system, its just not appealing, especially to trial folks. Once in awhile when I'm running a class I'd have the them focus on absolute basics like footwork and at best 1,2. The fanciest I've ever given the class was 1,2, step in clinch, turn + knee. The problem I'm finding with trial guys is they never come back because that's boring. So I can see it happening that gyms don't go over this to keep members attracted. We've had some members moan about the "boredom" that is 1,2,3,kick when it was the content of the classes for the week.
     
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  16. TheBookofSpeed White Belt

    TheBookofSpeed
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    Kind of sad considering winners are typically those who master the basics. Fancy rarely wins fights. The basics, when mastered, will stomp you all day long.

    I teach speed. Fancy is an enemy of speed. That boring stuff that you master is where speed lives.

    Footwork pays dividends. Again, the basics. You can never go wrong with solid basics.
     
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  17. j123 Pro Sherdogger 500-0-1

    j123
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    It is, everyone likes fancy stuff like spin/jump kicks or spinning elbows you see in highlight reels, but those are a minority, maybe the 1% - 10% of the total. Its usually the basics done at such a high level it always lands.
     
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  18. Superhet White Belt

    Superhet
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    One of my favorite combinations (closed stance): throw a good hard jab, move back. Fake a jab-cross with your torso, then actually throw it and move back. Make sure you are making these shots as long as possible and don't put everything into them so you give them a false sense of confidence. They will be thinking you're only firing long, straight shots, and will probably be moving forward with their gloves high and tight in front of their tucked-in face. Now you explode forward, grab/cover his rear hand with your lead and blast him with an overhand right to the ear behind his glove, then immediately take an angle to the in- or outside and hit him again with a long combination.
     
    #18
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2017
  19. Ilk Orange Belt

    Ilk
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    Haha considering the flashy stuff. Here is a story from my previous gym. Picture a small town in Eastern Europe and its fight sport gym. Everyone looks like a future thug and trains cause his father is actually a thug or a guard. The clothing is nothing like for MMA or kickboxing. Everyone buys some cheap gloves a mouthpiece and shows up in whatever sports wear they got. Enter the.fancy looking guy with full UFC sports wear and gloves. So we spar and he is trying to knee teep and jump from there for a superman punch. The coach sees him and tells him to be.more serious and jokes about it telling me I am free to kick the hell out of him if he.does it again. So he comes with it a minute later and I blast him in the air with a front kick and the guy literally falls in his ass.

    Now on a serious note you guys mention angles. Let's talk about them. When is a good time to take an angle from a tactical point of view.

    I find it easy against a SP as it looks natural. You step to the left and you have an angle for the cross or round house and they can mostly jab or hook you. It is easy to defend and easy to attack. And as I said I mostly spar against low IQ new to the sport SPs. It is very easy to out smart them.

    However orthodox is another animal. I feel like I can only jab them. Or do some jab low.kick. I try to step right and slip to the outside a lot against them. I try 1-2 and then go right but it does not happen often. So we often just jab fight and hit our hands when we try something else. I can't outsmart them. And if they are more sgressive or stronger they often beat me.

    Regarding distance note taken
    I have a bad habit to jump back when I hit to escape distance on which I worked alone last summer shadow boxing. We have tried last boxing private sessions to work on it.
     
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  20. TheBookofSpeed White Belt

    TheBookofSpeed
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    Reminds me of a pic of Joe Lewis on the cover of Black Belt magazine from many years ago. Could have done anything that he wanted and he picked a simple front kick to the gut. Hands up, straight kick, simple as that.

    In my book I call the front kick the "uncool kick that should be your go-to."
     
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