Saturday, May 23, 2009

Limitations of MMA Part II

A common argument in favor of sport MMA is that the techniques that are forbidden wouldn't make any difference in the outcome of the fight if they were allowed.There is of course no doubt , the introduction of weapons & multiple opponents would definitely change the dynamics and most possibly the outcome,but what about unarmed techniques themselves between only two fighters?

There is NO doubt in my mind that if you allowed many of the illegal techniques, you would get different match results.The matches would also be quicker & more decisive and they would in fact be much more brutal(why they have been banned in the first place).Kicking & Kneeing the head of an opponent would definitely alter many of the grappler vs striker matches and before they were banned, striker's started learning to use them to devastating effect against the shoot .And although there isn't usually such one dimensional fighter's in MMA that can be labeled a pure striker or grappler anymore, individuals usually still specialize and are better at one one aspect than another or will try to use one specific method against a particular opponent based on the opponents skill set strengths. Eye gouges has never been allowed, so who really can say what effect they would have had against early grapplers.The key is in being able to your techniques freely against a resisting opponent in an instinctive manner.
"Natural Movement" is the other big argument proponents of Sport MMA use against the illegal techniques.They argue that since you can't train them safely in a free sparring situation,you'll never be able to apply them in real life. There is some truth here,but the key lies in getting creative with your training as well as getting the proper gear as stated in part 1.
I've even heard it argued that many of the techniques taught in reality based martial arts & combatives are inferior because they are not "instinctive movements" that come naturally to a person & therefore they will never be as effective as movement that are.One again,there is SOME truth to that statement,but it is not used in the proper context or applied correctly. What are natural or instinctive techniques? Is punching & kicking more "instinctive"than grappling? I don't think anyone does the BJJ, advanced wrestling & kickboxing techniques that have proved so effective in MMA competition by reflex or instinct. It takes proper training to develop those skills, but it is true that you should try to train & apply those techniques by using & being compatible and in harmony with the natural movements, reflexes & instincts of the Human body.