Jul 7, 2007

Jens Pulver (the one who got his ass beat down by BJ Penn) demonstrates a nice way to drive into your oppoent for the underhook.

A Clip From:
"Learn to Fight and Win with Jens Pulver Vol 1 - Dirty Boxing"

Jens Pulver, the guy who got his ass handed to him by BJ Penn in their second fight here:

(no sound)

Instructs us on how to shell up and punch your way into infighting range, with an underhook to boot.

This is a short clip, but you can download his entire video here:

I'm sorry, but I just had to put up that first clip-- SOO much shit-talking leading up to the fight.

Jul 6, 2007

Pros Vs. Joes: Randy Couture Dominates 3 Joes.

This is one of the funniest things I've seen in a long time:

The Couture segment starts 1/3 through it-- the 'Natural' just completely obliterates these three guys with basic submission grappling in a UFC ring, with Big John McCartney ref'ing the rounds.
This video made me smile.

Homo-erotic Pornography, or Extremely Informative Takedown Instructional Video by Mark Kerr?

This one is perfect for the soon-to-be-grappler:
Mark Kerr, (wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Kerr) a champion of the UFC, Vale Tudo, and Pride, Runs you through the basics of the takedown (greco-roman) in this old instructional video,
"Mark Kerr's Seek and Destroy Vol 1- Fundamental Takedown Techniques"

Definitely has all the marking of an early 90's MA tape.

Pros: This tape has basically everything you need to know about the takedown, from body movement, to timing. I have yet to see another video that breaks it down so simply while maintaining a high degree of aliveness.
Cons: He sounds like a feminine version of President Reagan, and the old-school wrestling shorts bother me a little bit. Damn 'roided freak.

Honestly, for the first time learning the takedown, this is almost perfect.
Now, for all the _ing _hunners in the audience, and the others who hate grappling with a passion and claim to have an "anti-grapple," watch the video so at least you know what you're up against when someone is talking about a 'takedown,' not the choreographed ballet I've seen you guys train with. Hell, you might even change your mind about grappling after this video... not about how gay it looks, about its effectiveness, dummy.

Mark Kerr Fundamental Takedowns
Uploaded by Hater_Huntin



Jul 5, 2007

Want those summer abs? Or are you just looking to initimidate someone with a 100-pack?

From Muscle and Fitness Magazine Online,
"61 Ways to Fight Fat."
Great read, and though I may not agree with them on a thing or two, I can assure you, that if you follow this list, you'll be able to wash clothing on your stomach. Hell, the next "Chuck Norris" joke will be replaced by your abs.
"Did you know that (__your name__) is so tough, his abdominal muscles are made up of roundhouse kicks."
No, that didn't make much sense, but you get the point.
So, here is the portion of the page on... "Nutrition"

  1. Stay hydrated. Active individuals actually require more water and should aim to consume roughly 1 gallon per day to avoid becoming dehydrated. And if you’re one of those people who hates drinking water, consider this: Dehydrated individuals burn less fat than their well-watered counterparts.
  2. Eat more frequently. Eating 5–6 small meals a day as opposed to “three squares a day” causes your metabolism to work constantly. Eating larger meals, on the other hand, slows your metabolism and forces leftover calories to be stored as fat.
  3. Eat protein. Since muscle-building is the fastest route to slim down, you want to make sure that your protein consumption is enough to keep up with your weight training. Eat too little protein and your gains could be much slower.
  4. Get 1–1.5 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight per day to help your muscle gains along. Use protein bars and shakes to supplement your whole-food consumption and stave off cravings.
  5. Get leafy. Those who eat a salad before dinner tend to consume less calories overall during dinner. But don’t sabotage yourself — stay away from high-fat dressings like ranch, blue cheese and Caesar.
  6. Skip happy hour. Alcohol consumption can temporarily blunt testosterone levels, hindering muscle repair and growth and blunting sexual drive. Also, the calories from alcoholic beverages — in the neighborhood of 100–200 each without cocktail mixers — add up faster than you may think.
  7. Cut out soda. Instead, rely on water and other flavored drinks like Crystal Light to get your fluids every day. If you drink one soda per day, you’re adding 1,750 calories per week to your diet. Also, studies have shown that those who regularly consume diet sodas tend to gain weight in the long run because of overindulgences elsewhere.
  8. Calories out! The goal in any fat-loss or weight-loss program should be to burn more calories than you consume. Aim to cut total calorie consumption by about 250 calories per day. Yes, that means you’ll have to figure out how many calories you eat in a normal day. Get on it. The math will pay big dividends later.
  9. Got the munchies? If you can do without the butter and salt, plain popcorn is a winner. Two quarts has the same number of calories as just 20 potato chips. By substituting 1 cup of plain, unbuttered popcorn for a 1-ounce bag of chips, you’ll save 135 calories and 10 grams of fat.
  10. The magical fruit. Subjects who ate half of a grapefruit with meals or drank 8 ounces of grapefruit juice three times a day lost 4 pounds (with some losing more than 10 pounds) in 12 weeks without dieting.
  11. Carb smart. Keep your carbohydrates low to moderate when trying to lose weight. If you rotate low- and high-carb days, you’ll be able to keep your energy levels up while running a caloric deficit. Good, clean, fiber-rich carbs include oats, potatoes, rice and whole-grain bread. Also, limit high-carb drinks like fruit juice to postworkout, when your body needs carbs to speed recovery.
  12. Operation Dinner Out. Be diligent when ordering in a restaurant. Have your meats grilled without oil or grease. Ask for steamed vegetables with no butter. Get a salad (no cheese) with either low-fat dressing or vinaigrette.
  13. Avoid simple sugars. Too much sugar in your diet can wreak havoc on your metabolism by spiking your insulin response and promoting the accumulation of bodyfat over time. Immediately after exercise, however, is an ideal time to ingest simple sugars; otherwise, steer clear.
  14. GI Low. For most of the day, your carb options should be of the low-glycemic variety, meaning they’re digested and burned more slowly. Athletes who eat low-GI carbs burn more fat throughout the day.
  15. Eat more fiber. Fiber, both soluble and insoluble, is essential to health and helps decrease bodyfat. Adults should consume 35–40 grams of fiber per day, with about a third of that coming from insoluble fibrous sources. Along with whole grains rich in beneficial fiber, consume high amounts of fibrous vegetables, such as broccoli, to attain your daily intake. High-fiber foods also promote satiety.
  16. Timed consumption. When you eat is just as important as what you eat. Many people who eat way too much at night should re-evaluate their eating patterns. Eat two-thirds of your day’s calories before dinnertime to avoid overeating late in the day.
  17. Prepare. Watch what you eat around work. If your workplace serves nothing healthy, tote food or snacks along with you. If you’re attending a workplace function in which only junk food is served, pre-eat. Having recently eaten something that’s healthy and adequate in calories to meet your energy needs, it’s easier to say no to the junk and empty calories.
  18. Get yolked. Eating eggs for breakfast was recently found to reduce hunger and food intake for up to 24 hours. Slow down, Turbo! Successful dieters and fitness buffs will tell you that fast eating and bodyfat go hand in hand because you end up overeating. It takes about 10 minutes for the food in your stomach to signal your brain that you’ve eaten enough.
  19. Don’t be salty. Excess sodium consumption can make you look softer and cause you to burn less fat. Most people get way too much, anyway, especially if you eat a lot of processed foods. To help you look leaner and strip sodium from your diet, drink more water, cut back on highly processed foods and switch to potassium chloride to season your foods.
  20. Got milk? Research has shown that individuals who consume high levels of dietary calcium in a 24-hour period had higher rates of fat oxidation that day than those who consumed lesser amounts. So stock up on low-fat versions of cheese, milk and yogurt; if you’re lactose intolerant, choose dark-green leafy vegetables, legumes and almonds.
  21. Go nuts! Eating a handful of almonds was found to help test subjects lose 62% more weight, 56% more fat and 50% more from their waistline after 24 weeks compared to those who followed the same diet without almonds. 

OTM (OnTheMat.com)

Anyone who bothers to read this blog and is somewhat into grappling probably already knows about this site: OnTheMat.com;
it has everything from MMA news to videos, and is a GREAT resource for grappling techniques.

The video collection, although not the biggest, is definitely of high caliber. The written techniques section, however, is preferably for those who know the terminology and have the ability to visualize what is going on.

They don't have an option to embed their media, so here is a direct link to their video page:

Favorites List-worthy

Since I like putting some form of visual into my posts;


I've discovered a new favorite series of moves.

This is from sparring late tonight with a willing neighbor:
Time a Thai clinch, and feint a knee, and use that downward pull to underhook both arms, with the head in your armpit.
Pivot and sweep to get him on the floor, position yourself on your knees.
Slide the leg next to the opponent under his arm/head, securing proper leverage to perform a crucifix choke.

That's it. I just wanted to share... at 4:30 in the morning.

I hope everyone enjoys the newfound general lack of run-ons, mostly proper capitalization, and actual use of punctuation. That took forever.

Jul 4, 2007

What's the point?

Someone asked me yesterday: "What's the point of this new blog of yours? You say you're a dominant striker, but you like posting about grappling. so what is this about?"

Granted, this is still a very new site, so the goal may not be very clear. As varied as the things I may post are, the basic point of this blog is this:

From the point of a mixed-martial artist, you're not really a MMA fighter unless you have all of the bases covered, which in the most general sense consists of: Striking with the arms and legs, and grappling (ground and in clinch). I am looking at it in the point of view of a stand-up fighter who realizes that proper grappling should be an essential part of this repetoire, but still needs to ease into it(hence the beginner videos), and i see a lot of my generation of MAers who did not start in grappling fit into that group. Also, i will be trying to accommodate for the small percentage of grapplers who want to learn something as well. so, essentially, i'm the middleman. i'll encourage strikers to learn a little bit of grappling, and vice versa.

But, however, that does not mean i'm abandoning striking altogether. Why throw away something you're decent at? So, i will be posting a lot of videos, and yes, a slightly higher percentage will be on things like Brazilian Jiu Jitsu or Greco-Roman wrestling, but that's largely due to the fact that grappling videos are usually much better made. Logically-- striking requires quick reactions and an innate sense of timing, which can't be taught from a video. Basic grappling, on the other hand, while it requires quick reactions as well, is a technical art, and so, QED, much easier to get information on from media of any sort.
...Not to mention the fact that a lot of current-age striking videos try to make a little money by advetising "anti-grappling strikes," which is more or less bullcrap, and just pisses me off to the point where i just don't want that kind of BS on my blog.

So, regardless, keep an open mind, but also take what i write and post up with a grain of salt anyway.

Hope you like the site so far.

*From a suggestion from PizDoff from the bullshido forums, I will be formatting all of my posts to be free of grammatical and punctuation errors, starting by re-doing all of my previous posts. After trying to put up as many useful things as possible, I guess I dropped off quality somewhere in there. Sorry.*

Bas Rutten's Armbars Armlocks and Escapes + SD video

Bas Rutten is one of my favorite MMA color commentators, currently with the IFL;

wikipedia says:
"Sebastiaan "Bas" Rutten (born February 24, 1965) is a Dutch mixed martial arts fighter and color commentator. He was a three time King of Pancrase, former Ultimate Fighting Championship Heavyweight Champion, and is a certified MTBN Thai Boxing instructor, Pancrase instructor, a 5th Degree Black Belt in Kyokushin karate and a 2nd Degree Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do. He is also the founder of "The Bas Rutten System" and the author of various martial art books and videos. He holds notable wins over Frank Shamrock, Masakatsu Funaki, Guy Mezger and Tsuyoshi Kohsaka. "

So, more or less 'in his honor', here are a pair of his videos:

Bas Rutten's Armbars, Armlocks, and Escapes:

the first 30 seconds of the video is a black screen-- be patient, or just wait for it to load and skip ahead.

BAS RUTTEN'S armbars,armlocks,escapes
Uploaded by magivcideo

The best edited version of "Bas Rutten's Street Defense" video ever--

"I don't believe in an eye for an eye... I believe in two eyes for an eye."

Jul 3, 2007

Tony Blauer's SPEAR System

This is one of the controversial topics in the world of MA... Tony Blauer's S.P.E.A.R system, or "Spontaneous Protection Enabling Accelerated Response." With just as many haters as there are lovers of the system, it is by far, one of the most famous, and the most successful RBSD-type styles ever, mostly in part by the fact that the system is used by the Navy SEALs.
But while most still agree that it is one of the few RBSD type 'styles' that are quite effective. I personally view it as a fantastic 'tactic' with an even better drilling system incorporated into the whole thing.

Because the SPEAR system is, in its most basic form, essentially a way just giving the user an extra half second of a cushion by stopping the attack and driving the attacker back with force, it's quite useful. However, that in itself not a complete MA, and if you've seen the way it is represented, it is definitely a "scenario-based" type system, which most users understand, and supplement with their own styles. The "spear" itself consists of essentially driving your forearms into the opponent's chest while maintaining a fence with your arms, never letting the forearms reach less than a 90 degree angle at the elbows. Physiologically, all that does is allow the user to use an extra tricep muscle for more resistance to an attack, Also, since you're driving into your opponent to block, you want to give yourself some reach while retaining some plyometric pushing power (which disappears after full extension of your arms).

Problems? The only cons I see in this system are:
1) Blauer's a complete douchebag, from what I hear, and EXTREMELY protective of anything SPEAR related. But that makes sense, because people are always trying to imitate the system.
2) Wayyy too expensive.
3) Going off number 2, you can home-drill the basics (which i think are the most important part of the whole thing), it just wouldn't involve that neat little 'High Gear' protection suit (which retails at $1200+)
4) Blauer makes it seem much more advanced than it really is. " Spontaneous Protection Enabling Accelerated Response, supported by medical research." Why not be really honest and say: "We just have these awesome effective reaction drills that we grind into your head and muscles." That's really just it.

I'll upload the full 20 minute 'early spear' demo video made in the 90s or late 80's sometime. it's a bit outdated, but it's a good video. these sampler videos will have to do for now.



I am the freaking king of the wet marinade

Need some protein to build muscle after that hard lifting session?

Those are two ribeye steaks marinated for 3 hours, ready to go.

ysc87's personal recipe:
(For medium rare [you don't want to eat a good cut like ribeye any higher than medium])

You need:
rib eye steaks (1-4) (1"-1.25" thick)
dried parsley, oregano, thyme, basil
worchestershire sauce
virgin olive oil
maple syrup
soy sauce
red wine
beef stock

cast iron pan
oven pre-heated to 500 degrees

Prepping the steak 2-3 hours before
*Take chopstick/toothpick, poke a dozen evenly spaced small holes into the meat
[Some might ask if this would make the steak lose its natural juices: No, it won't, because in this recipe, you sear the meat immediately, essentially blocking the holes you created]
*Salt, pepper throughly (2 pinches per side)
*Rub a lot of dried parsley, oregano, thyme, basil, pinch of paprika, into meat until most of both sides are covered in herbs.
*Place in large dish, pour worchestershire sauce all over steaks

Leave in fridge for hour

Prep the wet marinade:
*Mix fresh minced garlic,soy sauce, worchestershire, olive oil, together in (1/2):(1):(1):(1) ratio
*Tblspoon honey, 1/2 tblspoon tabasco

Pour all over steaks

Preheat oven to 500

Take cast iron pan, pour high smoking point oil (canola) to lightly coat
Toss pan into oven, heat until ready (10-15 minutes)
Place steaks on pan (you should hear a sizzle)
DON'T TOUCH THE STEAKS FOR 30 SECONDS; Side should have a nice seared crust on it
Flip, and the same

Take off heat, flip, toss steaks with pan into oven for 2 minutes, pull out, flip, cook another 2. Leave steaks on a plate for 3 minutes to let juices even out inside.
Use that 3 minutes to pour a 1/2 cup beef stock + 1/2 cup red wine into hot pan, simmer, mix in whatever is crusted onto pan into sauce. drop a semi-heaped tablespoon of flour into the pan, and stir. You now have a red wine gravy.

Serve. And preferrably enjoy with a nice table red.

The best Judo instructional page on the 'Net

The site has drawing/animations galore. Just a little something to pique your interest in Judo.
Direct Links
Throwing Techniques: Nagewaza
Counter Techniques (Kawaishi, 1963)
Combination Techniques (Kawaishi, 1963)

Grappling Techniques: Katamewaza
Choking Techniques (Shimewaza)

More Techniques

More BJJ video instruction

Here is a fifteen set-series on the basic moves of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu by Marc Zee from the Arizona Center of MMA, available courtesy of ExpertVillage.com.

I embedded the "Arm Bar Takedown: Gracie Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Techniques & Moves for MMA " If you like, follow the link below to see all 15.
Not too shabby, IMHO. Definitely a recommended view.

Series: Learn Gracie Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Techniques & Moves for Mixed Martial Arts
Expertise: Marc Zee is the head trainer at Arizona Center of Mixed Martial Arts. He has been involved in MMA since 1993 and holds two black belts: one in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and one in Judo.
Contact: http://www.zeebjj.net/


Rodney King's Awesome Boxing Tips! + videos (not the one that got his ass beat by the police)

Rodney King/Crazy Monkey Boxing

wikipedia says:

Crazy Monkey Boxing is a unique approach to boxing priniciples meant to be
incorporated in
Mixed Martial Arts and Self-Defense. It was developed by South African martial arts coach Rodney King (not the same and no relation to Rodney King), and is taught worldwide by members of the Performance Coaching World Alliance (PCWA) and the Straight Blast Gym (SBGi).

Similar in many ways to a classic boxing "high guard," it is often first taught as a defense but can and has been used offensively by MMA fighters successfully.
The stance is very squared, with the lead leg only slightly forward. This makes it easy for the practitioner to shoot or sprawl.

There is no relation or any influence from
Monkey Kung Fu.
While the stance and posture are the most obvious elements of
Crazy Monkey, there is an indepth coaching methodology behind the delivery of
it. This method has allowed the system to be used for sport, self-defence, law
enforcement, military training or as a tool for self development.

using the CM blocks against a jab:


A Simple Punching Lesson with Rodney King
Let the creator of the Crazy Monkey System give you tips to improve your punching game.

" What can you do in 30sec to enhance your jab?Here goes:

1. Always step on the Jab. Stepping on the jab enhances your power!
2. Protect your chin with your shoulder while jabbing. If there are no openings, there are no holes to counter into.
3. Keep your jab loose and relaxed until the moment of impact.Keeping relaxed and loose in the flight to the target increases speed.
4. Think of your jab as a train on tracks. Drive yourself to the opponent. Leaning over when jabbing causes lose of balance, knocks your precision out and diverts power.
5. When jabbing and moving let your jab hit the target before your foot hits the ground. When your foot hits the ground first, you lose your power to the ground!
Things You Can Do Right Now To Enhance Your Cross

1. Always step out with your lead foot, to the side when crossing. Stepping out with the lead foot on the cross enhances your power, by opening your hips. It also gives extension to your cross, so you can cover more distance!
2. Protect your chin with your shoulder while crossing. If there are no openings, there are no holes to counter into.
3. Keep your cross, loose and relaxed until the moment of impact. Keeping relaxed and loose in the flight to the target increases speed.
4. Think of your cross as a battering ram. Use your whole body, dropping the weight into the cross. Think lunge action, like you do when you execute lunges at the gym. Makes sure your back foot turns towards the target when you cross.
5. When crossing and moving use your jab to set up the cross. Don’t lead with a cross, there is just too much risk of been counterattacked! Keep Training & Train Safe

Things You Can Do Right Now To Enhance Your Lead Hook!

1. Always step out with your lead foot, to the side when hooking.Stepping out with the lead foot on the hook enhances your power; by opening your hips you give your self more arc to swing with. Added to this it places you on the outside of your opponent instead of straight in front of him, where a straight-line counter is so much easier for him to execute!
2. Protect your chin with your shoulder while hooking. If there are no openings, there are no holes to counter into. Use a horizontal fist and not a vertical fist hook. When using vertical fist hooks it is hard to protect your chin and head.
3. Keep your hook, loose and relaxed until the moment of impact.Keeping relaxed and loose in the flight to the target increases speed.
4.Remember to keep the arc of your hook as short as you can- relying on turning your hip with the hook, while moving most of your weight to the front foot. Turn your front foot in the direction of the hook as well.
5. The method I use is step, drop your back heel, raise your front heel, turn your hip and foot in the direction of the hook, keep your head facing the target (Don’t turn your head away), keep your rear hand up. Remember to pull your lead hook after execution back using the shortest distance to back to your face and back to an elbow tucked position in your stance. Lastly don’t lead with your hook,always set it up with straight-line shots where ever possible before using the hook, use your cross as the step out as well to set the hook up!"

I highly recommend going to his site, http://www.mymalife.com/
and read up, maybe even buy a video or two.

This'll be one of the best posts on this site, regardless of what style you use.
...your very welcome.

Modern Army Combatives- MAC

Here is the Modern Army Combatives Video--
I personally think this is a terrible instructional video, but it's definitely better than nothing.
If an army budget, low IQ, and Brazillian Jiu Jitsu had a drunken night together, this would probably be the sex tape that would be all over the internet the morning after.
For those still uninitiated to the world of grappling, worth watching.

What's scarier?

This is not a post on training or techniques, but still an important entry.

First, for those of you who are not familiar with Ashida Kim:
This man embodies everything that we call "bullshit," aka, "full of crap," and he is one of the most famous examples of martial arts fraud. Read through the articles, and you'll be overcome by an overwhelming sense of disgust, and maybe the desire to become a pirate.

I tried youtube for his old "kata dante" and one of his early interviews, but they were gone. So, in its place, a representation of his "Black Dragon Fighting Society" that I think is so accurate, it's scary :

So class, lesson?

Anyway, yeah.
In a nutshell for those who still don't get it:
Facebook/MySpace 'ninjas' = fine.
White ninja 'Sokes' trying to sell their wares = not so fine.

So, what's scarier?

You decide.

A small thank you to those at bullshido.net for exposing this dipshit to the public... a really long time ago. unfortunately, not everyone has heard about this walking punchline.

Jul 2, 2007

Finally, an outside resource (grappling)

“The armbar from the closed guard is an essential submission hold in Jiu-Jitsu. Your opponent has two arms and one neck, so mathematically the probability of an armbar working versus a choke hold is 2:1. First let’s lay the foundation for a flawless armbar from the closed guard (attacking your partner’s right arm). First, use your left hand to pin your partner’s arm to your chest; your right hand controls your partner’s elbow, pinching it to your own hip. Second, use your left foot on your partner’s hip to pivot your body 45 degrees to the right. Use your right leg to put your partner off balance. Third , the left leg catches your partner’s head. Fourth, pop the hips in.“Now let’s analyze some shortcomings you might encounter and some tips that will help. The armbar from the guard makes you vulnerable to a pass of the guard; make sure you always adjust your hips after any missed armbar attempt. You are exposed to the slam; develop the habit of hooking the inside of your opponent’s leg with your arm so you don’t get picked up and slammed. Especially in the armbar from the guard, because your opponent is on top, gravity is working against you. Whenever someone tries to stack me, I like to turn belly down to use gravity against my opponent’s arm.”



Wow. this is actually a pretty good link for beginners. I'm so proud of myself. More to come, of course.


the two books on the right of the page

"BJ Penn's book of MMA" and "the Tao of Jeet Kune Do"
These two books are by far my two favorite mixed martial arts 'textbooks.'
Here are their descriptions:

the Tao of Jeet Kune Do
by Bruce Lee

One of the earliest and best known books in the field of MMA, it is an international bestseller with over 300,000 copies sold. This is bruce lee's philosophic conception of the art of Jeet Kune Do, mostly in the original words, drawings and thoughts of the late master himself, compiled after his death.
If you don't know about this book, then you desperately need to get yourself to a bookstore or order it online via the amazon link on my page immediately. It is definitely my favorite reference in terms of the mindset and theory of the counter-attack.

BJ Penn's 'Mixed Martial Arts: Book of Knowledge'

BJ Penn, MMA welterweight and lightweight world champion, is the only non-brazilian to win the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu world championships and is a fighter in the UFC. This book holds its own against any Gracie book or Muay Thai book combined. Very well written with detailed pictures, it holds just about everything you need to get started, or brush up on certain aspects of mixed martial arts. It is one of the few books out there that guides you through how to formulate strategies, and that just adds even more value to this great book. Once again, bookstore or amazon link. NOW.


Striker Training

a post just for the stand-up fighters in the audience

Great Training Tools:
[Disclaimer: ...on top of training you're already doing]

Gaining strength

  • Weighted push ups
  • Pull ups
  • Resistance band isometric punching
  • Prisoner squats
  • Planks

All of the strength exercises are pretty straightforward... the resistance band isometric punching is something I learned about while reading up on Bruce Lee one day. You double up a resistance band, hold one end, loop behind your back to the other hand, and extend your arm like you're punching straight out and holding that position, in stages, while the non-punching arm remains by the waist.

Gaining plyometric strength, aka explosiveness

  • Woodchops
  • Jumping lunge
  • Jumping stars
  • Poor man's hurdles
  • Plyometric push-ups
  • Step-ups

Woodchops: take a weight or attach a smaller hand grip to a lat-pull down machine, stand perpendicular to the machine, and pull diagonally across your chest.
Jumping lunge: have one knee low to the ground, and the other leg bent, foot flat on the ground. Jump and switch positions multiple times
Jumping stars: crouch down, arms across chest, jump up open arms and legs so you look like a big 'X' and return to original position before hitting ground
Poor man's hurdles: in a semi-narrow hallway, take some masking tape, and make a row of 3 "hurdles," 3-4 feet high, 2 feet from each other. go back and forth.
Plyometric push-ups: if you don't know what those are, [in place of explicatives= 'Look them up in the Google search box to the right!']
Step ups: quickly jump on an elevated platform, at least 2.5 feet off the ground, land on one foot, jump back down, jump up with other foot.

Gaining speed/agility

  • TKD hopping
  • Jump rope
  • Resistance band quick flurrys
  • Hanging paper punches
  • Pick up pencils with your toes

TKD hopping: usually poorly executed; TKD hopping should actually be an even, low hopping on a shoulder width stance. You should never completely leave the ground. A really good exercise for the calves.
Hanging paper punches: probably the only controversial thing on this list aside from the TKD hopping. Hang a piece of paper at head height, and throw jabs at it. You can tell when you're snapping your punch properly. Remember, this is only for jabbing.
Picking up pencils w/ toes: i'm not lying-- it's actually an effective training tool for efficient, quick lateral movement.

Gaining accuracy/timing

  • Hanging limes/tennis balls
  • Play FPS games (not kidding)
  • Play with your dog

Hanging limes/balls is a very old training method, and it's a versatile one to boot. You can practice bobbing and weaving with the movements, and you can combine that with punching the limes for accuracy.
Unfortunately, accuracy and timing is only truly gained from sparring with a live partner. Solo training won't ever replace that.

Hope that helps: links for strikers coming up.
Next in line: grappling tools.


Setting all this stuff up is pretty freaking hard.

Lists of the links I want to share will be compiled by tomm. or the day after.
If you have any links of your own, feel free to leave a comment, and I'll check it out.

Jul 1, 2007

My general view of the current martial art world.

The Asian martial arts craze that started two or three decades ago affected everyone and their grandmothers. Unfortunately, of all the people who looked to profit off of that craze and thus give the general public access to the world of fighting arts outside of say, boxing or wrestling, only a small percentage of people were qualified to do so. And yet, even the unskilled ones reaped thousands to millions of dollars teaching inexperienced Americans their watered and dumbed down overpriced "bullshido," mostly in the form of laughable but well advertised Karate and Tae Kwon Do schools run by skill less instructors who don't know a damn thing, give themselves extravagant made-up titles, and take themselves way too seriously.

But thank god for the media. Whether it was the 70's when Bruce Lee was trying to show people that Karate was not the end-all-be-all to martial arts, and being well rounded and staying in shape was the key to actually being a fighter, or '93, when the first UFC (and the next 3) debuted and showed legend Royce (pronounced 'Hoyce,' get it right, people) Gracie demolishing his opponents with just the basics of a strong ground game (It was literally: feint low kick, move in, clinch, mount and/or submit).

Grappling. (Brazillian) Ju Jitsu. Sambo. Wrestling. Judo. Something that was and still is taboo with many TMAers (traditional martial artists), and still a large proportion of them continue to make up for the fact that they wouldn't be able to last more a couple of seconds before succumbing to an elementary choke by making poor arguments against needing any sort of grappling skill as part of your skill set. (You'll get injured being on the ground- What if his friends join in- A ground game won't take care of multiple opponents- Grappling looks gay [I'm being serious]- My style has the 'anti-grapple'- I teach grappling [crappling] already- etc...) Unfortunately for them, some people actually have brains and can see why that POV isn't quite right.

a) They assume that all grapplers can't fight off the ground

b) For some odd reason, they think that groundfighters so retarded that wont at least try to get up and away when they see a large angry mob made up of his opponent's friends heading towards him if he's on the ground already

c) They think that they have a superior fighting style because they learn how to fend off multiple opponents; which they actually can't do. (HINT: If your current instructor, regardless of style, tells you that he can fend off a group of attackers at once reliably, call BS, and move on to another school.)

d) There's no such thing as a reliable 'anti-grapple.' Such techniques usually call for something along the lines of 'Lean forward, stop them, elbow to the spine, eye gouge, knee.' unfortunately, anyone who's been properly trained on how to execute a takedown of any kind for more than 10 minutes in the past (i'll post a video eventually) should be able to get the person down on the ground sometime before the elbow can be thrown.

Actually, that last part takes me to another valuable point: A large percentage of TMAers don't see the importance of what many call 'live training,' or having a 'non-compliant partner.' Hell, anyone can pull off the counter-takedown described in d) against someone moving slowly starting the takedown from 5 feet away. Against someone who can take down someone half-decently, even if you did manage to fire off that elbow, since you're already off balance by the time you're throwing it, it won't do any damage. So to all you ground-fearing folk, learn how to sprawl. Really. It's the least you can do. Of course, live training, regardless of style, is the best thing you can do. Even if your art doesn't consist of many moves, drilling them hard and against someone moving as aggressively as you will lead to much better success than an art where you learn hundreds of moves, but each one is not drilled properly. One of the greatest parts about groundfighting is that training is much easier to control, hence much better execution when needed. I think that's honestly the reason grappling is so dominant these days-- it is so much easier to get proficient at than striking ever will be.

Now, if i was some belted BJJ practitioner, some might just brush off everything here as pro-ground marketing bullcrap. However, here's the shocker: I'm freaking terrible at the ground game. I'm a striker and an ex- TKD black belt to boot. I enjoy having quick hands and feet and being able to duck and parry shots until I find an opening. I WANT TO STAY ON MY FEET. regardless, I find that having a ground game is absolutely imperative. so, regardless of what your sensei or sifu tells you about taking classes outside of his studio, try it out. If you can't find a school, I will do my best to find every great link to grappling/MMA and post it on this blog. I'm doing my best to rebuild my skills from base one, so if you're new to all this, i can be the slightly less blind mouse trying to navigate you through the equivalent of a real life confusing-as-hell Escher drawing we call fighting, just one step ahead of you.

Thank you for reading, and as my first link to the outside, please read the forums at
It's a great site, join, and do be careful about posting stupid crap. There be dragons.
As great of a resource that site is, if you post like a clueless ninja LARPer (you can go look up what that means.) you'll get your e-ass kicked around like a soccer ball by a bunch of angry, jaded, ex-BSMAers.