pancrase style fight coming up


War Room Deep State
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Oct 24, 2003
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Well it has been 10 years since I competed in a ring (kickboxing) and I am getting ready to drag my 34 year old body back into the ring. It was supposed to be MMA with 10 ounce gloves, but I just found out that it will be open hand to the face (actually forehead no face contact), sort of pancrase style.

As a striking based fighter I am kind of bummed. My coach says work on kicks, wrestling, and BJJ, but keep the training mma style as they next fight after could be MMA rules.

I also plan to try to get some open hand sparring in and to practice these strikes with a punching bag and a grappling dummy that I hang from the ceiling.

Anyone have any training tips for this kind of fight, any good instructional that discuss open hand strikes? Respect to BAS for fighting in a style that goes against the striker.

Should I ask this in the striking training forum as well?
I don't really have any training tips for you, but, a guy I trained muay thai with fought two pancrase style fights. He is a pro mt fighter with a little grappling experience. He won one fight by getting his opponent up against the cage and unleashing strikes to the face until the ref jumped in and stopped the fight by tko. The second one was won against a Rickson Gracie student, the Gracie guy caught him in an armbar and he picked him up and slammed him once, the guy still held on to the armbar so he picked him up even higher the second time, slammed him and knocked him out cold. The armbar was locked and he said his arm still hurts from it sometimes. He really should have tapped. Anyways, this is how he did it as a striker so I hope this might help. Sorry for the long ass post.
Unfortunately strikes are not going to be very useful in a fight under these rules (at least not as a primary strategy). Neither your head strikes nor your body strikes will be very effective.

Your head strikes are useless because you are only allowed to strike the forehead. I'm sure as a striker you know that this is almost pointless. You can't knock anyone out or do any damage that way. In fact, you will probably hurt your hand worse than you hurt his forehead, even throwing palm strikes. All proper head strikes are thrown to the face/temple/jaw/chin. At best you might be able to jab at his forehead to create an opening.

Your body strikes won't be very effective either. Although you seem to be unrestricted in how you can strike, the fact that there are no real head shots will nullify your body shots. Your opponent will not guard his head properly. He will hold his hands low and catch all of your kicks. He will also quickly tie up with you if you punch.

I have trained a lot of striking in my life. It is actually really easy to guard your head. It is also really easy to guard your body. The hard part that takes years and years of practice is learning to guard both at the same time without leaving a huge opening. I have sparred a fair amount bareknuckle under the rules you have given. I can tell you from experience that serious striking has no real point because there is never any reason to guard your head because you can't be knocked out.

For this fight I would train your takedowns heavily, particularly clinch takedowns. It is extremely easy to clinch safely under these rules. I'd also focus on grappling and using body strikes to create openings. The mount is a poor position under these rules (no head strikes and no gi chokes). Instead go for side control and knee/elbow the ribs frequently. Also practice safe body strikes from the top guard.

The rules are definitely against you in this fight. However, I hope you do well regardless. And congratulations on getting back in the ring at 34. That takes real commitment and is very impressive.
I believe in Pancrase you cannot punch with a closed fist. All strikes with the hands must be with an open palm.
1) Pancrase style rules means that u can only use open hand to the face but hit the body with closed fists. I can also kick anywhere and of course grappling is in.

2) I will definitely keep the slam in mind, BAS teaches it on his DVD's, which i have set of, so I am going to review that. (got armed bared in class and totally forgot that one, of course we slam more lightly in class lol).

3) Balto - or anyone else - what do you think about using the slaps to distract the guy enuf to land legs kicks a few good times, as a final set up for a high kick over the top?

ps thanks for the tips keep em coming

PS i am now fighting a MT fight a month after this one - so my amature career is having late take off - lol
Get the Bas Rutten carreer DVD set and don't listen to Balto, hes obviously never heard of the LIVER SHOT! :)
rerard said:
Get the Bas Rutten carreer DVD set and don't listen to Balto, hes obviously never heard of the LIVER SHOT! :)

No, I do know what I am talking about.

In Pancrase, you are allowed to hit to the entire head. You just cannot do so with a closed fist. A palm strike to the face or other valid target area is very effective. You can knock someone out with a properly placed palm strike. Bas fought under those rules.

However, you can't do much at all by palm striking people in the forehead. The rules of this fight were clearly forehead contact only. Of course liver shots work well. But you won't be able to set it up if the guy doesn't bother to guard his head.

And to reply to Ganderson, if you are allowed to kick to the entire head, then palming the forehead is okay to set up the high kick. If you hit the guy solid you might be able to stun him enough to get it off. I just assumed that since only forehead contact was allowed, head kicks (and knees/elbows as well) would be banned.
Thanks guys

Yes all kicks are in so I am definitely going to work bitch slapping then leg kicks then the high kick - but I will also listen to balto in that I start wrestling classes tues and will focus on BJJ allot. I also have the honor (and fear a bit) of sparring with George st-pierre tomorrow, so if I survive I am going to learn allot.

does the career DVD set of bas's focus on pabcras4 style fights as opposed to his big DVD

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