MMA, How Much Grappling Time and Striking?

Discussion in 'Standup Technique' started by The Man Monster, Jul 25, 2005.

  1. The Man Monster

    The Man Monster Orange Belt

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    Okay I was thinking since the invention of the UFC alot of people have started cross training to become more complete fighters, I myself do this and I find myself doing BJJ 85% of the time and neglecting the other areas needed to be a complete fighter.

    So my question is, if you had to split up your workouts into percentages what percentage would you spend doing what?

    The choices being:
    Boxing
    muay Thai
    BJJ

    Obviously you can substitute BJJ for any other type of grappling art. By the way this isn't which do you do, its what should you do.

    Thanks,
    The Man Monster
     
  2. TequillaSlammer

    TequillaSlammer Green Belt

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    It depends on what kind of fighter you are. If you find your natural talent lies in striking then you should spend most of your time developing that and build the rest of your game around it.
    Since this was posted in the stand up forum I'm assuming you're a striker, so I would reccomed:
    40% Boxing
    5% Muay Thai
    30% Takedown defence
    25% BJJ/Sub Wrestling

    The reason I gave so little time to Muay Thai is that if you don't want to get taken down you want both feet on the ground as much as possible so kicking isn't all that important. Secondly once you get into clinch it's hard to get out of which means that the grappler has more of a chance to take you down.

    If you're a grappler then I would say switch boxing with BJJ/Sub Wrestling and change Takedown defence to Takedwons.
     
  3. nopardaid

    nopardaid bammed

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    I disagree, 60% Muay Thai, the rest of the time BJJ. You are really limiting yourself if you don't develop your kicks, clinchs can be easy to get out of, if they are not, practice more.
     
  4. Spoonman7

    Spoonman7 Red Belt

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    find out what your weaknesses are and make them strengths, I was a strikier for over 2 years and then I got into grappling, and now I spend most of my time with Judo and submissions and such because I had a lot of natural instincts on my feet.
     
  5. TequillaSlammer

    TequillaSlammer Green Belt

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    Have you ever done any clinch? I don't just mean Thai clinch I mean Greco-roman clinch and dirty boxing. I seriously doubt you have if you're trying to imply that it's simple to get out of. Anyone with a half decent clinch can shut down your striking and keep hold of you until they take you down.
    60% Muay Thai? I agree that you have to develop some kind of kicking game but do you seriously wanna spend that much time learning how to give up your balance? And why, if you're tryin to avoid the ground do you not want to learn takedwon defence?
    It's getting beyond the point where can only learn Muay Thai and BJJ and succed now, before you couldn't only train one discipline and get ahead now you can't even learn two, you need to know everything.
     
  6. Kamehameha

    Kamehameha Boricua

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    i'd spend more time striking than grappling. Guys like Silva and CroCop are so dangerous b/c they're excellent strikers/good grapplers, instead of the usual excellent grapplers/fair strikers in MMA.

    Someone who can knock u out or rip u to shreds standing up and is tough to takedown is alot more dangerous than someone who hits like a girl but can grapple very well imo

    personally i spend alot of time boxing and practicing takedown defense and prioritize my ground game into sweeps and getting up instead of laying and praying. i'll take the armbar or choke if it's present, but i'm a striker by nature.
     
  7. Dedicado

    Dedicado Machetero

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    I grapple and strike equally. I lift and run equally too. This is what I'd recommend.
     
  8. triggertap79

    triggertap79 Green Belt

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    I actually agree with this
     
  9. The Man Monster

    The Man Monster Orange Belt

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    Well the reason I was asking was because I feel that striking is natural to everyone, its something people do by nature. I mean little kids throw punches, so if you know the basics and train them then I feel you'll be okay. However, I prefer grappling because I find it to be less threating to me because I can shut down your strikes.

    However I've been told because of my size/power I should focus more on my muay Thai.
    I'm 6'4 and 250 pounds, so I can throw a hell of a punch, and my kick is even worse.
    Problem is the ONLY training I do in muay Thai outside of sparring every now and then (this is not my fault, its hard to fnd people willing to spar with me) is working on my kicks.

    I have several videos on proper kicking techniques and I workout like crazy with my leg power.
    The way I work it is:

    Standing my strategy is to attack with the hands until I take it to the ground or kick for the knock-out/injury. And with takedown defense I can't really work that because my takedowns are weak, and because I like ground fighting I rely on them to opt for mat work.
    I know that isn't the brightest thing in the world to do, but I feel confident in my grappling to the point were I will let them take me down so I can work from there (Well I don't let them take me down, I just force them to shoot so I can work my sprawl and brawl until we both go down.)

    Thanks for the advice though!
     
  10. miniaq

    miniaq Yellow Belt

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    The way you train depends on what you re trying to achieve. You want to be an MMA fighter, MT or grappler? for me I look for all around ability so two days ground work, two days of Muay Thai. I get a couple of days of serious cardio work and body resistant movements thrown in.
     
  11. Dedicado

    Dedicado Machetero

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    With respect, I gotta disagree here man. Punching is something you gotta work hard at, even if you're a natural, if you want it to flow, be accurate and have the stamina to do for a prolonged fight. Tell me, do you ver find yourself getting gassed faster than your op[ponents? If so, you need to work harder at your striking, so you can throw more flurries for longer periods of time.
     
  12. Vovchanchyn Fan

    Vovchanchyn Fan Green Belt

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    A bit of an aside, but I strongly disagree with what you are saying regarding striking being natural, and I'm basing it on 3 years of experience: throwing a proper, true boxing style punch is absolutely *not* natural at all. Throwing crappy, loopy, arm-only haymakers that have no power and will leave openings the size of a bullseye on your head to a good boxer is what is natural. I recommend you go spend some time in a boxing gym and then see how you feel about that statement. The more time you spend with striking (boxing/kicking) the more deep you will find it is, in part b/c it has additional dimensions such as range, footwork, etc. which grappling does not. My main point, though, is you should not mistake that striking is natural - nobody can walk into a pro boxing ring and go much further than 1 round with only natural training (watch toughman for proof of that), you have to learn very unintuitive techniques to really transfer your max power in a punch. That being said, I realize you are talking straight MMA and there aren't that many skilled boxers in MMA so the second half of your statement, that you can get away with just the basics is probably true until you do happen to run into a good boxer.

    Anyway, to get back to your original question - you need to find where your natural talent lies, and maximize that and minimize your weaknesses in the remaining areas. You are not likely to become a champion by "not being bad at any area" - you have to be excellent in at least one thing so that you have a way to win offensively, and then reduce your ability to lose in the others. Crocop is a good example of that - everyone said you can't win in MMA by kicking but he's nearly kicked his way to the top by being great at one thing, something he obviously has natural talent for, and minimizing his weaknesses in the remaining areas. A lot of people say you should be perfectly 50/50, but the bottom line is people always have a knack for one area better than others...so you have to exploit that, while minimizing the weaknesses in the other areas (since you do have to be well-rounded to survive the times in your opponents strong area).

    If you've been training for about a year and have the basics down of both striking and grappling, then I think you need to make a gameplan with your trainer that emphasizes your strengths and abilities (e.g. where can you win, and where do you have to avoid losing), and minimizes your weaknesses, which means spending more time in one area than others. Also, I would let your trainer/coach tell you where you are better at things, and not just your own assessment.

    If you have not been training at least a year then you are probably better splitting it down the middle b/c you first have to have all the basics down to survive, then later build up your area of expertise.

    Hope that helps!
     
  13. The Man Monster

    The Man Monster Orange Belt

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    Actually you were a very big help, and I like your advice. I'm okay in boxing, I have the basic techniques down however I will admit that I'm more of a power hitter (as in I use the proper technique to throw the punch for maximum power but my defensive skills, combination skills, distancing skills and all other important areas as very weak.)

    The reason I was asking is because of two things.
    One being that very few skilled strikers, even those that practice take down defense remain on they're feet.

    It seems like the best strikers around get slammed more than I'd like to be slammed.

    Point two is that in this months Black Belt magazine there is an article about how strikers abandon they're skills once they are placed in a street/cage fight.

    But I will ask my instructor what he thinks I should do and get back to you guys.

    Thanks,
    The Man Monster
     
  14. miniaq

    miniaq Yellow Belt

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    "Black belt magazine there is an article about how strikers abondon thy're skill once they are placed in a street/cage fight." I don t think it s so much that they abondon standing up during a fight, it's more that the oponent senses his weakness then clinches to save his head. Since the popularity of BJJ has grown specially in the past few years, I think that the idea of a fight ENDING on the ground has gotten a little too much attention. The majority of top notch fighters in both Pride and UFC are winning by knocking out their oponents or on points mostly gained thru stand up fighting, best case examples are Silva, Crocop and Liddle.
    As for your average street fight, lets be honest would you ever consider putting a guy in your guard during a confrontation! most likely you ll take him down get a side mount and start using your boxing techniques and pound on his head or add a few knees to the body for good measure.
     
  15. Rory McDonell

    Rory McDonell Green Belt Professional Fighter

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    I understand what you're saying about striking not being an innate ability. However, I recommend you go spend some time on the wrestling mat before you say that grappling dosen't require range, or footwork.
    Wrestling takedowns are perhaps a little more complicated than you're acknowledging.
     
  16. TheHighlander

    TheHighlander Green Belt

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    In general, both strikers and grapplers look like crap (i.e. like they forgot their skills) when in MMA. That's because the "rules" are different. Kickers suddenly need to worry about takedowns, punchers need to worry about the clinch (more), and grapplers need to worry about getting hit.

    While you can win fights quite easily with lay'n'pray, it isn't a good way to be successful as you won't be invited back very often. There are plenty of good fighters that would be successful in Pride/UFC except that they aren't exciting enough.

    Professional fights and street fights are completely different things. Pro fights are won in the gym and street fights in the initial attack.
     
  17. $uperman

    $uperman Black Belt Platinum Member

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    I think the best would be Boxing 2 days a week, Muay Thai 2 days a week and BJJ 2 days a week. I think doing a sport 2 times a week can give you enough progress.

    But maybe you should do wrestling or Judo instead of Boxing. You learn how to punch in Muay Thai. And Wrestling and Judo give you good takedowns and takedown defence
     
  18. Vovchanchyn Fan

    Vovchanchyn Fan Green Belt

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    I shouldn't have said grappling doesn't require *any* use of range/footwork, b/c if you include takedowns you are right, there is some footwork and distance handling specific to takedowns. However, I personally don't find wrestling takedowns that complicated esp. in regards to footwork or distance and I have a very good single leg and ankle pick, both of which are straight freestyle wrestling takedowns.

    Also, for future reference, I don't offer my opinion on the boards unless its based on actual experience in the relevant area. While my forte is striking, I still have nearly 5 years combined between sub grappling and freestyle wrestling, and I've also had the privilege of grappling with several well-known Pride / UFC fighters and even a few Abu Dhabi competitors in training....so I have spent a lot of time on the mat at a high level of skill and thats what I am basing my opinions on (actual personal experience).

    Anyway, the bottom line is in my opinion, there is still no comparison in the degree of footwork and range movement skill that being a great striker requires vs. being a great grappler. And you definitely have to account for those added dimensions significantly more if you want to be a great striker vs. becoming a great grappler.

    Hope that clarification helps.
     
  19. Pale1

    Pale1 Blue Belt

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    I practice my striking more. But I have bene wrestling since I was 4, have wrestled Div I(Old DOminion), and grappled since I was 7, so it comes like 2nd Nature. But I always make sure I still work it.
     
  20. Commissar

    Commissar Gold Belt

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    I have no intention of doing MMA anytime soon, to say the least, but I plan on doing Modified Pankration or Sport Jujitsu or something.

    Anyway, I've done a bit over 4 years of Taekwondo, reached green belt status, but I no longer do that anymore.

    Now, I do Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu 3 or 4 times a week (one no-gi class), Judo only twice a week, and sometimes boxing and kickboxing once a week each. Of course, it all depends on when I'm finished working each day, but thats my ideal schedual.

    Obviously I have a heavy grappling bias, and I do believe that you should do more striking than I currently do if you plan on doing any heavy MMA. But for my use, Modified Pankration especially, my training is good, being a fighter based around a good grappling game.
     

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