Friday, February 27, 2015

TMA vs MMA video response

About a month ago, I saw a Youtube video from an instructor who taught European weapons fighting. He talked about his opinions on MMA. I agree with him one hundred percent that just because a practitioner of traditional martial arts like Wing Chun kung fu enters a cage fight and loses a match it doesn't mean that the style is bad. Some people have blamed the practitioner and said they were not at a high enough level of Wing Chun, but I disagree with this. Only a bad style would require the grand master to make it work. He said that in a real combat situation going to the ground would be a bad idea. My perspective is that if I'm ever in a street altercation, I probably do not want to go to the ground like he said, however, if I do end up on the ground then I would be glad that I put in the time to learn grappling. What he and many people misunderstand that in combat, the ground is not necessarily some place you choose to go, but it can be forced upon you. In days of old when weapons were the norm, the ground was a place where you finished your opponent. If there was no wall to pin your opponent to, you had to pin them to the ground or they will keep running away from you. It is the same in the animal kingdom, watch the lion sweep the legs, take the back, and then go for the neck. He said that whether a style works or not depends on the context that it's used. He said Wing Chun would not work in a cage fight because that is the wrong context for the style. He said that in a street fight Wing Chun would be better than the MMA style or a grappling style. Once again I completely disagree with him, if we traveled around the nation and found 100 Wing Chun practitioners put them in a street fight, and then found 100 MMA practitioners and put them in a street fight, my money would be on the MMA practitioners. It doesn't matter if it's MMA, Judo, BJJ, Wrestling, or Boxing, any combat sport. I put my money on the combat sports practitioners not because of context, but because I assume that these guys will be in better physical condition and because they will have much more full contact sparring experience. If you watch the history of the UFC. You will see that many skilled martial artists entered the Octagon, and they basically lost to tough guys. Tough guys then lost to athletic guys. If you take a look at today's champions like Rhonda Rousey she has all three qualities at a super level, she is super skilled, super tough, and super athletic. All this being said, you have to understand that BJJ came from Japanese Jiu-jitsu. The Gracie family took JJJ and put it through their meat grinder to evolve the style. So if we did the same thing with Wing Chun or any style for that matter, then I believe the result would be a style that can be effective in Vale Tudo matches or MMA matches. As for right now many traditional martial arts focus on one thing, keeping the tradition, keeping the knowledge at a certain level of quality and passing it down from one generation to the next. You can't ask a scribe or a librarian to prove that their knowledge works in a real life scenario. Also keep in mind that BJJ is not better than JJJ, BJJ would not exist without JJJ. The Gracie family evolved it a certain way, that doesn't mean that is the best way, there are other ways to evolve an art. BJJ is not for everyone, it has one of the highest drop out rates of any martial arts that I have ever studied simply because it's so hard. I have also met students that are just not comfortable with the idea of grappling. So there is definitely a place for JJJ even though it maybe the more archaic form.

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