MMA vs Traditional

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    Jan 10, 2011 12:22 AM GMT

    I am not a Mixed Martial Artist or an MMA fighter in any sort of the word...


    I am a pure bred when it comes to martial arts... I did not go to a training camp for a few months then stepped into a WWF cage... I trained for decades, in a school... I fought in arenas on wooden floors or tkd mats... If used my expertise to defend myself... You?


    MMA is cool but it lacks...

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    Jan 10, 2011 1:27 AM GMT
    I'll never understand this disharmony between MMA and boxing and martial arts. I dont know if its because of the relative 'newness' and 'trendiness' of MMA because of the UFC's popularity explosion, or if its old fashioned jealousy and hating, because it makes boxing and martial arts look so boring to so many people.

    I personally love all combat sports, boxing, m/a AND MMA. I've worked my ass in all of them for years and years and years, suffered dozens of injuries, tears, and breaks, gained lots and lots of titles, awards and belts. And even after all that, I still cant get enough; Im constantly trying to grow and evolve and learn new techniques.

    I dont see where MMA is lacking anything, except the respect of old-schoolers.
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    Jan 10, 2011 2:37 AM GMT
    This discussion is essentially the same as saying X style is better than Y because Y lacks Z, or something similar.

    There is a finite number of movements that the human body can do. Certain styles look at some of the movements and other styles choose to highlight others. If we look at the martial arts (traditional, boxing, MMA, everything) we can imagine that when we start from the very beginning, we are all starting at different points at the bast of a pyramid, with the ultimate goal of reaching the top.

    The pyramid metaphor, I think works very well to conceptualize what it takes to be a good martial artist in a community of other martial artists. Sure we start with our own styles, our own sets of movements, but ultimately if one wants to grow and become the best martial artist he/she can be (i.e. reach the apex of the pyramid) we need to look towards all of the other styles and see what positive things they have to offer us on our journey--and there are lots of positives out there.

    I find MMA very interesting as a concept for teaching martial arts. The training camp you talk about gives people practical skills in a short amount of time and then puts them in a situation to apply the skills in a highly competitive, high-stress environment, which forces the participants to fall back on their instincts and training to execute what they've learned. This kind of training is essentially what happened when our older styles were developed during times of war. Men were trained with what was most effective for a given situation in as quick an amount of time as possible to direct application in war.

    MMA as it appears now is simply the next iteration of an age old cycle in martial evolution, though what I fine most interesting is that it has not arisen from some kind of militaristic struggle, which perhaps relates most closely, then, to the type of combative style practiced by ancient Roman gladiators.
  • BlackBeltGuy

    Posts: 2609

    Jan 10, 2011 3:02 AM GMT
    DragonDevil said
    I am not a Mixed Martial Artist or an MMA fighter in any sort of the word...


    I am a pure bred when it comes to martial arts... I did not go to a training camp for a few months then stepped into a WWF cage... I trained for decades, in a school... I fought in arenas on wooden floors or tkd mats... If used my expertise to defend myself... You?


    MMA is cool but it lacks...



    I'm going on 27 years this year. I hate UFC and MMA it's sloppy and choppy. I know a guy who got a black belt in 8 months. to me thats Mcdonalds of martial arts.
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    Jan 10, 2011 3:43 AM GMT
    Can't see the insignia on your do bok to tell, but I'm surprised to hear that you studied traditional Tae Kwon Do. There really aren't that many teachers of traditional TKD on the west coast, or really, North America.

    I studied for almost a decade. Every style has its strengths and weaknesses, which I'm guessing you recognize from your decision to study multiple martial arts. TKD has atrocious grappling techniques; but then, it was never designed for that. MMA has a strong Brazilian jiu jitsu base, but I bet you wouldn't try and take someone to the ground if you were dealing with multiple attackers. Everything's got its application--shame we can't learn it all!
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    Jan 10, 2011 3:45 AM GMT
    Blackbeltguy said I know a guy who got a black belt in 8 months. to me thats Mcdonalds of martial arts.


    I agree with your sentiments about the Mcdonalds version of martial arts and the predominance of said "mcdojos" that "teach" MMA. But I'd say the mcdojo-syndrome afflicts every style--we all know where those schools are that pass out black belts like candy on Halloween.

    I see that as more of an issue of instruction as opposed to a "problem" inherent in the style. Perhaps we can work towards a discussion of the philosophy of the style and say that the execution of the instruction is pretty hit-and-miss.
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    Jan 12, 2011 4:57 PM GMT
    The disharmony comes from the lack of fundamentals that are taught to MMA fighters. I have respect for the really great fighters out there... The ones that trained hard and took time to study their art and apply it... Whereas the other fighters go to a camp do card kick boxing, some grappling, some boxing, and some sparring... That's not a martial artist to me... Mcdonalds of martial arts is a good way to put it... Traditional arts still have it's place to teach quality martial arts for excellent self defense and excellent striking. Unfortunately there are so called martial art mcdonalds schools out thier like United Studios of Self Defense, what a joke.
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    Jan 12, 2011 5:32 PM GMT
    BoulderingBum saidCan't see the insignia on your do bok to tell, but I'm surprised to hear that you studied traditional Tae Kwon Do. There really aren't that many teachers of traditional TKD on the west coast, or really, North America.

    I studied for almost a decade. Every style has its strengths and weaknesses, which I'm guessing you recognize from your decision to study multiple martial arts. TKD has atrocious grappling techniques; but then, it was never designed for that. MMA has a strong Brazilian jiu jitsu base, but I bet you wouldn't try and take someone to the ground if you were dealing with multiple attackers. Everything's got its application--shame we can't learn it all!



    I don't need an insignia on my uniform... People want to know where I train they can ask... I prefer it... There are very very few traditional tkd schools left... I trained under a certified 9th degree "Korean" Grandmaster, who's known for his excellent technique.. Throughout my training my master emphasized traditional technique and forms as well as olympic style sparring... We are a very rare schools but one of the best in our area... I know there is tkd self defense but my master mainly taught me hapkido and the judo. I studied wing Chung from one of our tkd masters at my school who studied wing Chung, he said it compliments the tkd kicking very well...

    Escrima runs in my family so I had to study a bit of it.
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    Jan 13, 2011 4:13 AM GMT
    DragonDevil saidThe disharmony comes from the lack of fundamentals that are taught to MMA fighters. I have respect for the really great fighters out there... The ones that trained hard and took time to study their art and apply it... Whereas the other fighters go to a camp do card kick boxing, some grappling, some boxing, and some sparring... That's not a martial artist to me... Mcdonalds of martial arts is a good way to put it... Traditional arts still have it's place to teach quality martial arts for excellent self defense and excellent striking. Unfortunately there are so called martial art mcdonalds schools out thier like United Studios of Self Defense, what a joke.


    Yea well, I stay out of these debates, since I have respect and love for all combat sports and get sick of hearing it from both sides. The MMA crowd has no respect for old-school martial arts, then I have to hear it from the old schoolers who hate MMA; and here I am, stuck in the middle.

    To each his own and all that, I guess....
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    Jan 13, 2011 6:05 AM GMT
    TawlBlond said
    DragonDevil saidThe disharmony comes from the lack of fundamentals that are taught to MMA fighters. I have respect for the really great fighters out there... The ones that trained hard and took time to study their art and apply it... Whereas the other fighters go to a camp do card kick boxing, some grappling, some boxing, and some sparring... That's not a martial artist to me... Mcdonalds of martial arts is a good way to put it... Traditional arts still have it's place to teach quality martial arts for excellent self defense and excellent striking. Unfortunately there are so called martial art mcdonalds schools out thier like United Studios of Self Defense, what a joke.


    Yea well, I stay out of these debates, since I have respect and love for all combat sports and get sick of hearing it from both sides. The MMA crowd has no respect for old-school martial arts, then I have to hear it from the old schoolers who hate MMA; and here I am, stuck in the middle.

    To each his own and all that, I guess....


    Never said, I hate MMA... All I said it lacked in teaching the fundamentals...

    Being in the middle is cool... Your a boxer right? Someone taught you the fundamentals behind your ability... correct?
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    Jan 13, 2011 6:47 AM GMT
    I started MMA 2 years ago...
    After 10, now 12 years, of martial art training Ive realized that MMA is more for people who just want to punch things.
    icon_biggrin.gif I like it but in actuality Ill use my Kalari.
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    Jan 13, 2011 7:08 AM GMT
    Guys who train hard and well in MMA, can actually take down someone who has trained in a traditional style. Its because of the training that goes on in MMA, and if you're fighting someone who is very well trained. Not only are they going to be extremely strong (the conditioning training is insane), but the fight will be confusing for the guy who isn't trained in MMA.

    MMA also basically comes from the ancient Greek fighting style called Pankration. They're names also pretty much mean the same thing too, which is pretty interesting. MMA- Mixed Martial Arts. Pankration is Greek for "all powers". The moves in Pankration actually look like kickboxing, muay thai, karate, wrestling, boxing, and kung-fu all mixed together. Its pretty fascinating, and this was discovered in 95 if I remember correct, when all of these frescoes and scrolls were found of the sport.

    Its also believed that when Alexander invaded India, Pankration was a great influence. He always told his men to mix with the people, and they did. Pankration was not just sport, but it was also something the soldiers used and I'm sure with the Greek soldiers staying in India doing their sport it passed down and way way later influenced Bodhidharma who is called the grandfather of martial arts... Not hard to believe him learning of the history of the Greek soldiers, and the hand to hand fighting and sport of Pankration.

    The sport was actually later boycotted and banned by the Spartans, because it wasn't "violent" enough for them. Now because of the popularity of MMA today, they're considering putting Pankration back into the Olympics, its awesome! Even the rules are quite still the same as today and resemble MMA.. Except girls can now watch, and even partake in the sport. Back in the day women were instantly killed if caught watching it, and I have no clue why that was lol. Its also not a fight to the death kind of thing anymore. Death was never the intent, its just that most fighters would rather die than "tap out" which would bring shame upon their family, and Pankration school.

    I started MMA when I was 15, and I love it.. My guy is better but I won't tell him that lol
  • Vaughn

    Posts: 1880

    Jan 13, 2011 4:14 PM GMT
    MMA is purely ment to entertain.
  • Vaughn

    Posts: 1880

    Jan 13, 2011 4:15 PM GMT
    It's also more about male aggression.
  • SoDakGuy

    Posts: 1862

    Jan 13, 2011 10:14 PM GMT
    I want to learn MMA. I think it would help me w/ my reaction time w/ boxing and also in my daily life.

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    Jan 13, 2011 11:32 PM GMT
    HungGarSig saidThis discussion is essentially the same as saying X style is better than Y because Y lacks Z, or something similar.

    There is a finite number of movements that the human body can do. Certain styles look at some of the movements and other styles choose to highlight others. If we look at the martial arts (traditional, boxing, MMA, everything) we can imagine that when we start from the very beginning, we are all starting at different points at the bast of a pyramid, with the ultimate goal of reaching the top.

    The pyramid metaphor, I think works very well to conceptualize what it takes to be a good martial artist in a community of other martial artists. Sure we start with our own styles, our own sets of movements, but ultimately if one wants to grow and become the best martial artist he/she can be (i.e. reach the apex of the pyramid) we need to look towards all of the other styles and see what positive things they have to offer us on our journey--and there are lots of positives out there.

    I find MMA very interesting as a concept for teaching martial arts. The training camp you talk about gives people practical skills in a short amount of time and then puts them in a situation to apply the skills in a highly competitive, high-stress environment, which forces the participants to fall back on their instincts and training to execute what they've learned. This kind of training is essentially what happened when our older styles were developed during times of war. Men were trained with what was most effective for a given situation in as quick an amount of time as possible to direct application in war.

    MMA as it appears now is simply the next iteration of an age old cycle in martial evolution, though what I fine most interesting is that it has not arisen from some kind of militaristic struggle, which perhaps relates most closely, then, to the type of combative style practiced by ancient Roman gladiators.


    I quote you cos u hit the nail on the head in my opinion icon_biggrin.gif
    many traditional styles changed gradually from an intent to kill or practical application in general, to focusing on the process of training and learning, discipline, physical and mental health. Especially with modern times of law and peace. sports and games bloomed in the late 19th century and many martial arts turned into peaceful competition as well. My style Judo, actually started as a form of MMA as it was put together from different schools of Ju-jutsu to form an efficient fighting style. old judo katas have punching and kicking and defense against weapons, which is far from modern judo.

    So now the audience is asking for more blood and violence, and your comparison to gladiators is spot on. furthermore mma is more commercial, and of course a lot of fighters go where the money is, hence the popularity.

    But I also agree with some of the others, that mma is wanting in some areas. I think the saying "jack of all trades, master of none" has a bit of truth to it when it comes to a lot of mma guys. also it seems the values/philosophy and aspect of education in traditional styles is absent in MMA.
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    Jan 16, 2011 1:06 AM GMT
    IHG84 saidGuys who train hard and well in MMA, can actually take down someone who has trained in a traditional style. Its because of the training that goes on in MMA, and if you're fighting someone who is very well trained. Not only are they going to be extremely strong (the conditioning training is insane), but the fight will be confusing for the guy who isn't trained in MMA.

    I started MMA when I was 15, and I love it.. My guy is better but I won't tell him that lol



    I disagree.. If an MMA guy my same height and weight stood against me... He wouldn't be able to take me down, or take me down easily... I have had the harder training and fundamentals behind my arts in order to use them effectively... I'm stand up fighter myself... So yeah, I maybe taken to the ground, but i've rolled before... TKD provides me with conditioning, I gain strength from Hapkido and Judo... I know a bit of Judo for some knowledge of rolling but like I said i'm more stand up....


    But look at GSP, a true Mixed Martial Artists in the every sense of the word.. He did not go to a training camp.... He studied multiple arts and brought them together to make his fighting style.... He's studied the following; Kyokushin, Wrestling, Muay Thai, Boxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Gaidojutsu.. This is what i'm taking about.. He learned the fundamentals to be a truly great fighter.
  • BlackBeltGuy

    Posts: 2609

    Jan 19, 2011 7:02 PM GMT
    I agree, I meet MMA guys all the time and Gracie students

    if they come to a class with me then they are instructed to toss it all of their learning out the window
    I'm not afraid to be thrown down, first get me there. I am a stand up fighter different black belts in different styles. Have I blended? yes but for showcasing.. have i ever used my styles outside of a supervised environment, NO. competition on a mat, only. That is the only place to use it.

    I also tumble and can do triple back handsprings, layout and do "tricks"however, its done on a track and not hard floor. thats why showing off on the grass kills your back and joints, so you keep it in the gym
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    Jan 19, 2011 8:53 PM GMT
    DragonDevil saidI disagree.. If an MMA guy my same height and weight stood against me... He wouldn't be able to take me down, or take me down easily... I have had the harder training and fundamentals behind my arts in order to use them effectively... I'm stand up fighter myself... So yeah, I maybe taken to the ground, but i've rolled before... TKD provides me with conditioning, I gain strength from Hapkido and Judo... I know a bit of Judo for some knowledge of rolling but like I said i'm more stand up....

    I think you're foolish for stereotyping MMA fighters. It's just as easy for an MMA fighter to drop a 4th degree McDojo blackbelt.

    Traditional arts are fine, but IMO, there's often too much emphasis on forms, philosophy, etc. MMA fighters often get down and dirty with multiple styles, so there's not a lot that surprises a good fighter. Moreover, philosophy is fine, but actual reflex training & sparring makes the fighter.
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    Jan 19, 2011 9:54 PM GMT
    no doubt, if you just want to learn how to stand a good chance in a street fight, MMA is probably the way to go.
    But ultimate fighting or street fighting isn't really the purpose of most of the traditional arts. And if you go to a traditional martial arts school and they claim, that in a short time you'll be able to defend yourself well on the streets, they're probably delusional or just lying.
    But you'll find culture, history, traditions and educational elements that you won't in MMA.
    You shouldn't really compare, since there are different goals and purposes to each style.

    That said, most of the best MMA fighters have had a long career in a traditional art, before making the transition to MMA.

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    Jan 23, 2011 4:47 AM GMT
    averagejoe said

    Wouldn't be able to take you down easy, eh? Do you know what happens when you use an upper block on a TKD kick? It's hard not to go down to the mat when your foot is 7 feet in the air. Maybe your sparring partners don't do that to you, but I wouldn't hesitate.

    I think you're foolish for stereotyping MMA fighters. It's just as easy for an MMA fighter to drop a 4th degree McDojo blackbelt.

    Traditional arts are fine, but IMO, there's often too much emphasis on forms, philosophy, etc. MMA fighters often get down and dirty with multiple styles, so there's not a lot that surprises a good fighter. Moreover, philosophy is fine, but actual reflex training & sparring makes the fighter.



    I guess you haven't viewed my profile... I'm looking at this at a Traditional method vs a MMA method... I haven't stereotyped in one bit, but here you are stereotyping (oh faceless one). I give my respect to where my respect is due for the hard working athletes in MMA that go out and become great fighters. There are very few great fighters out there... Believe me.

    I've trained in several martial arts fully learning aspects in TKD. Moreover, I have a strong sense of self defense and I have ground techniques from my 15 years of Hapkido and 3 years of Judo with my Grandmaster... I'm a well versed Martial Artists not an MMA Fighter. Which was my original comment to begin with.
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    Jan 24, 2011 2:05 AM GMT
    DragonDevil said
    I guess you haven't viewed my profile... I'm looking at this at a Traditional method vs a MMA method... I haven't stereotyped in one bit, but here you are stereotyping (oh faceless one). I give my respect to where my respect is due for the hard working athletes in MMA that go out and become great fighters. There are very few great fighters out there... Believe me.

    I've trained in several martial arts fully learning aspects in TKD. Moreover, I have a strong sense of self defense and I have ground techniques from my 15 years of Hapkido and 3 years of Judo with my Grandmaster... I'm a well versed Martial Artists not an MMA Fighter. Which was my original comment to begin with.

    I have read your profile; though, I'm not sure what that has to do with anything.

    Ok, let me elaborate on my view and let you know where I'm coming from:
    I'm actually not an MMA fighter either (in the UFC sense). I'm a traditional student who's studied multiple styles over 15 years, trained multiple students, and studied under a very highly ranked grandmaster. Trust me, I'm well versed in traditional styles too.

    However, I moved away and ended up having to study on my own for several years. I started to branch out by reading books, watching videos, and sparring anyone willing to fight. Of those resources, I found MMA ones were often the most practical and useful.

    Now every time I walk into a traditional school, it feels like I see overweight, underconditioned students doing sloppy forms with a billion stripes on their belts. This definitely isn't always the case, but it feels like it's becoming more common.

    So, like you, I give respect where it is due. I've met a lot of great traditional martial artists. I've also met many great MMA fighters. I even have a lot of respect for tricksters. (They do things I can't dream of)

    I just felt like sticking up for MMA because I think it has a wealth of knowledge to offer. As for the belts, I think the whole system should be thrown out as it's more a money maker than anything now. Originally, they didn't use belts anyway. If you look into the martial arts history, MMA really starts to look a lot more like the styles that current "traditional" styles arose from - back when physical conditioning, strength, speed, reflexes, practical techniques, and camaraderie were the name of the game instead of name dropping and belt flashing.
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    Jan 31, 2011 12:54 AM GMT
    averagejoe said

    Now every time I walk into a traditional school, it feels like I see overweight, underconditioned students doing sloppy forms with a billion stripes on their belts. This definitely isn't always the case, but it feels like it's becoming more common.

    So, like you, I give respect where it is due. I've met a lot of great traditional martial artists.

    I just felt like sticking up for MMA because I think it has a wealth of knowledge to offer. As for the belts, I think the whole system should be thrown out as it's more a money maker than anything now. Originally, they didn't use belts anyway. If you look into the martial arts history, MMA really starts to look a lot more like the styles that current "traditional" styles arose from - back when physical conditioning, strength, speed, reflexes, practical techniques, and camaraderie were the name of the game instead of name dropping and belt flashing.



    Well then, you are not walking into a proper traditional school... My Master's School is not like that.... We are all fit and very well versed in the art that he taught us... I bolded in what you said and it is exactly what we discipline our selves in.... We don't do name dropping and belt flashing.... Our abilities speak for themselves... Within a 30 mile radius you can't not find a better school... other than Gracie Jujitsu, but then again two different products.

    But we are back to MMA vs Traditional.... This can be a circular argument... Okay so I've done rear naked chokes, leg locks in a traditional uniform, not topless with a pair of shorts...lol

    I'm just saying MMA is good, for the really hard workers.. So right respect is due to those guys.. But respect is due for the hard working traditional martial arts that dedicated thier lives to teaching guys to get to where they are... Some of those traditional artists are some of the Greatest MMA fighters... GSP, Anderson Silva, and so on.

    Also, those that don't have the traditional background that are in MMA lacks fundamentals that traditional arts teach...Training camp vs a real School
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    Mar 01, 2011 11:33 AM GMT
    Krav Maga is admittedly MMA. It is a mix of many Martial Arts and a good instructor, hopefully from Israel and has served in their army, will tell you so. Except you can not really spar, only demonstrate.

    I practice Muay Thai now. Initially I was out to knock-em dead. Now I am back to the basics; step, block, punch, step, block, kick, step, block, knee. It is difficult, a bit boring and humbling. It is not a lot of show. It is a lot of dedication and respect for the Art.

    And that is what I see as the difference between MMA vs Traditional Martial Arts - dedication and respect.
  • jperfit

    Posts: 593

    Mar 01, 2011 12:42 PM GMT
    1on1NYC saidKrav Maga is admittedly MMA. It is a mix of many Martial Arts and a good instructor, hopefully from Israel and has served in their army, will tell you so. Except you can not really spar, only demonstrate.

    I practice Muay Thai now. Initially I was out to knock-em dead. Now I am back to the basics; step, block, punch, step, block, kick, step, block, knee. It is difficult, a bit boring and humbling. It is not a lot of show. It is a lot of dedication and respect for the Art.

    And that is what I see as the difference between MMA vs Traditional Martial Arts - dedication and respect.




    I disagree that MMA is like krav Maga, I first trained in krav and many of the movements are similar it is very different, in krav your pretty much doing the same movements over and over again till it comes 2nd nature With MMA you training using multiple art forms which I think is good especially in street fighting, competition is different, I trained in krav,judo, jujitsu and so far the MMA works for me dosnt mean I give up judo