Moves That Don’t Work In A Fight

Moves That Don’t Work In A Fight

You may have read the story about my school fight with Tompy – in this, I tell of a move I’d learned and perfected that would pretty much end any fight in a shower of blood and snot.

In this fight, I had my first opportunity to use it.  I grabbed a handful of his hair, so I could pull back his head and deliver a hammer fist/forearm strike downwards on his face with all my body weight.  Except I couldn’t pull his head back!

That was probably my first experience that almost every martial artist will have at some point:

Most of what they teach you does not work in a real fight.

Having a fully compliant training partner is a lot different from facing down some adrenaline jacked psychopath.

Most martial arts will teach you to throw a punch, then as you for some weird reason leave your arm out there, fully extended, your partner will smoothly dodge around your extended arm and trip you to the mat.

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What actually happens in your average pub brawl, is this:

You either turn around just as a punch connects with your face, or your opponent talks some shit to scare you, and smacks you in the face while you’re suffering from adrenaline dump.

That’s a real opening.  You’re stood there with a silly look on your face as they hoof you into unconsciousness.

In the extremely unlikely even that you’re switched on enough to actually dodge their first haymaker, you’ll notice that they pull their arm back in almost instantly.  

As a slight aside, this is even more true of someone with a knife – so don’t even start to think about being the hero with that one!

The ONLY chance you have to use that arm is to dodge in such a way that you can hook your arm around theirs as they throw the strike, intercept their strike, or move inside it with a block.

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The first one I have tested successfully.  Basically, as they punch you move to their outside, sliding your hand over the top of their arm and the up under their armpit.  From there, and all in one fluid move, you can push the side of your hand into their shoulder-blade before they recover their balance, and take them face first into the floor or a wall, or apply a suppression hold as needed.  Even with this, I found I had to wait for them to throw a straightish punch – and most untrained people simply won’t do this.  And also remember to think ‘Trap And Snap’, rather then wrestling on the floor where their 4 mates can stamp on your head.

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Intercepting their strike I’ve already covered as being the best move you can ever learn, which will enable you to beat any opponent.  That is simply to get your elbow up exactly how your body wants to react.  They punch the point of your elbow, they shatter their hand, and the fight goes right out of them.  Job jobbed, and so easy I can train a 5 year old to do it.

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Moving inside with a block is one we all like to think we can do, but in reality I doubt it.  You can combine it with the elbow interception, but the idea of actually stepping TOWARDS someone who is punching you isn’t natural, and you can ony overcome your instincts with A LOT of pressure training or real fight experience.

People will tell you to “never kick above the waist in a streetfight”.  I would disagree with that.  Booting someone in the head is something they won’t be expecting, and even if they do grab your leg you can close in and reign elbows down on them before they can do much of use with it.  The main reason I think this would fail is because most people can’t kick to head hight from cold.  If you can’t – don’t.

And do you know what other moves aren’t a good idea to try in a fight?

Anything that doesn’t assume the opponents first strike will be a punch to your head or a headbutt.  Or anything that assumes an attacker will throw one attack at a time, rather than launch an assault like a frenzied windmill, or an Ameri-Do-Te Hurticane.

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If you survive their first assault, THEN you might get a chance to take control and show off your martial arts moves for your mates.

Just don’t expect them to let you do it to them!

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Should Children Do Cage Fighting?

Should Children Do Cage Fighting?

I saw a news report (so expect a rant) this morning where everybody was getting all uppity because two children have been ‘Cage Fighting’.

Here’s the BBC report: Boys’ fight in cage ‘very barbaric’ says Jeremy Hunt

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Right, which Nob Head even labelled this ‘cage fighting’?  Ok, so it’s in a cage, much like adult Mixed Martial Art (MMA) fighters go at it – but if I’m not mistaken that’s simply because they were fighting at the adult event?

On the report, they also said that there was NO striking allowed at all.  Therefore this was NOT MMA – it was just a grappling match.

Does that get you dropping your pitchforks if they called it a ‘Grappling Match’ instead of ‘cage fighting’?

One ‘expert’ even said that he was fine with children doing wrestling, but some of the moves these kids were doing could have caused serious damage if they’d made a mistake.

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What?

Wrestling is fake.  The whole point of wrestling is to perform stupidly over-the-top moves that would most likely kill anybody in real life!  MMA grappling moves technically can’t be performed with a ‘mistake’, because the whole purpose is to be able to adapt a move based on what your opponent does to stop you doing it!  It’s not scripted!

He also said he didn’t mind children doing this sort of thing in a controlled environment.  Could it be any more controlled than a martial art with worldwide support, which had paramedics and doctors at the ringside?  And add to this expert fighters who’ve spent their whole lives studying and are passing their best knowledge on to these children.  FFS do these people even think before they open their mouth?

So these kids weren’t wearing any padding or headguards.  Boo-hoo!  Get over it!  For one, let me just say again THERE WAS NO STRIKING, and secondly how often do kids get hurt playing the non-contact sport of football?

We don’t need your stupid politically correct protection!

These idiots have no idea about martial arts – especially grappling, where you can’t wear padding because if you do you can’t perform the techniques… or your opponent will use your padding to hurt you.

Does it need to be in a barbaric cage?  No.  And I bet they rarely do fight inside an octagonal cage – much like how boxers will rarely fight inside a ring.  These kids had probably trained for years in a dojo on padded mats before this.

This is nothing new.  Take away the labels and cage, and what we have is two children having a Judo match.

It’s just that the knee-jerk idiots will blow this out of all proportion as their latest crusade, and get it banned when its something that kids want, love, and might actually teach them some discipline.  And stop them sitting eating Greggs pasties and playing on a Nintendo DS whilst getting fat, then having a riot…

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How To Tear Out A Mans Throat

How To Tear Out A Mans Throat

Back when I was a young whipper-snapper at the early stages of my journey into the Martial Arts, one of the first ‘essential’ moves I felt I needed in my arsenal was to be able to rip the throat out of my victim.

This probably had as much to do with watching Patrick Swayze in the film ‘Road House’ than it did with the teachings and philosophies of Shotokan Karate.

It did switch me on to the fact that there are certain moves you can do which will end a fight very quickly.  Luckily I never had the opportunity to tear anyone’s throat out – which may have been hard to explain away as ‘reasonable force’.

The next move I practiced lots, as I got into what I call Destruction Techniques, was to grab the opponents hair, yanking their head back, and then slamming your fist down like a hammer onto their upturned face.  A proper power technique – which unfortunately means it will fail most of the time unless you’re fighting a smaller and weaker opponent.  I had one opportunity to try it in a real fight, and it failed as I couldn’t pull their head back enough ready for the smash.

I think it was probably this ‘real world’ experience that took me to the next level.  I wanted stuff that worked.

Not only that, I wanted stuff that worked against stronger people.  Stuff that worked when I was injured or losing, or just had one chance and one single shot.

Unsurprisingly, here started the time when I drifted into Muay Thai kickboxing and Ninjitsu (and later still, Russian Systema).  Both arts have techniques tried and tested to work, and don’t shroud it all in useless bullshit that you need to spend sixteen years in a horse-riding stance to learn.

Muay Thai taught me how utterly devastating a strike from an elbow can be.  I learnt how to use my knees to full power to cripple someone in a single and often invisible strike.

Ninjutsu opened my mind to body mechanics and how you can use the movements of an opponents own body against him.

My go-to move became the now well-known strike with the heel of your palm to the nose of your opponent.  Except I knew that you don’t do that – you strike the pressure point just below the nose upwards at 45 degrees.  Either that or the Tiger Claw strike using your foreknuckles to the throat, knee, nose etc…

Then I learnt the joys of incapacitating someone by using strikes that were unexpected and not to the obvious places – the sword kick (sweeping motion utilising the edge of modern footwear to their inner shin), stupidly easy joint manipulations to escape any hold, using misdirection so they don’t even know how they got hit or what by.  Kino Mutai – the art of biting.  How to make someone injure themselves when they try to strike you.  The list is endless and I’m still learning.

The really surprising thing is how easy all this stuff is.  To do and to learn.  And that’s what also makes it so scary – to think someone half your size may also know this stuff does a great job of persuading you not to go around starting fights!

In short, I know a lot of nasty ways to take someone out or even kill them, and whilst I’ll still always prefer to lose face and walk away from a fight (unless I genuinely can’t avoid it), there will always be a little part of me wondering… what if…

That’s the part of me that will end up in jail forever, though.