Friday, June 10, 2011

Jack of all trades, master of none

I don't think there's really much I can say about training at this point. I have Grapplers Quest in a week, and I feel as prepared as I can be. However, I've been watching more MMA lately and have noticed a couple of things.

Ever since the end of middle school, I've watched MMA. As I've previously written, I began with a karate/kickboxing background, so I was first training in striking/standup martial arts. I remember watching my first few MMA matches online and I was intrigued at how MMA fighters blended striking and grappling styles.

However, this was back in 2004, and MMA had not (and probably still hasn't) fully developed. I feel that people who now watch MMA are forgetting that MMA in and of itself is not a style. MMA is not A martial art; it's Mixed Martial ARTS. This means that it's a blend of styles, and different fighters typically base their strategy around the style they are best in. For example, Georges St. Pierre and Josh Koscheck built their style around wrestling, while guys like Chuck Liddell and Anderson Silva built their styles around striking. I feel as though people are losing appreciation for the individual martial arts that go into MMA. People get bored and boo whenever a fight hits the ground. They ignore the sweeps, passes and setups that most BJJers/grapplers will often see. I don't care if someone doesn't know what's going on, but if you're going to watch MMA I think you should at least do some research on what the heck you're watching!

Because of this blending, I see many MMA fighters become a jacks of all trades but masters of none. Many are okay at each style, and sometimes it's sloppily thrown together. I hate seeing a fight hit the ground while the person on top stalls to retain top control. There are so many basic sweeps, setups, submissions, and even takedowns that many MMA fighters seem to not go for, even at the highest levels. Striking often becomes a series of haymakers with little appropriate timing or precision. I'm not saying all MMA fighters are like this, but there's an increasing amount that are.

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