Striking to Grappling Combinations (diary entry)

single leg 114.11.19


My Thursday evening class brought my client up to the two and a half hour point of his Mixed Martial Arts course. We trained four combinations looking at striking entries to grappling.


The lesson warmed up with callisthenics specific to MMA and agility drills working footwork, takedowns and top position movement on the ground. We then began our series of MMA combinations. These combinations are specifically aimed to attain a strong grappling position.


The first combination begins with a series of jabs – perhaps a flickering jab – to encourage the opponent to parry against this type of attack. This is then quickly changed to the same side lead hook before dropping levels to perform a double-legged takedown. This combination is a great way to set up an angled shoot. The double-legged takedown can be performed using a different variation whereby the fighter moves completely to the outside of the opponent’s legs.


The second combination opens up with a jab/overhand. The overhand takes advantage of its unique angled trajectory and drives down into a single-leg takedown. The overhand is a technique that has a lot of prominence in MMA fighting and the smaller gloves help facilitate the way it accesses targets. This combination also provides a great example of how it can transition so well into a takedown.


The final standing combination looked at blitzing into a clinch position and then performing an inside-reap or trip. This is another good example of how striking techniques can be quickly transitioned into grappling. In this instance the blitzing hands (another common MMA striking technique) change into pummelling hands, fighting for the double under-hooks. When the double under-hooks are not attained the fighter sets up the opponent’s legs for an inside trip before shooting for a single-leg.


The combinations were finished with some ground ‘n pounding. Here we lifted something from another lesson I taught last week where the top fighter threatens a through pass whilst striking his opponent. The opponent is likely to try to control the fighter’s wrists which results in the latter posturing back. The shoulder roll might be incorporated if the bottom opponent begins to strike, but here the fighter is looking to set up the straight ankle-lock.


The lesson finished with one five minute round of MMA free-sparring.

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