- NUDDA M.A.X.TRAINING – Annual Instructor convention – September 2013
- NUDDA Seminar – The Art of Striking – 14th July 2013
- On teaching
- NUDDA Seminar in London – UK – May 2013
- NUDDA Seminar in Berlin – Germany – May 2013
The success rate in training depends on different factors such as effort, discipline tenacity and passion for the Art/s you choose. But I am beginning to succumb to the idea that some Arts and their “techniques” in that respect are indeed “superior” to others. For quite a while I have been trying to hold on to the idea that any Art is as good as the other. But I don’t believe that anymore. I guess I am wrong. But sometimes is “right to be wrong”.
Only a few years back any martial artist that went through a rigorous period of training could have managed to handle himself well against a typical pub brawler, regardless their MA background. Most times anyways.
Times have changed dramatically as Martial Arts have become a lot more appealing to a wider public (including brawlers) because of the MMA phenomenon. So these days is not uncommon to find a brawler well-trained in MMA.
So what does a brawler see in MMA that couldn’t find in the past? Brawlers are not exactly clever individuals (otherwise they wouldn’t be brawlers) so what they see is simply that MMA is great for learning how to beat people up. So they are all going to learn that now. Some of them might become better people in the process, but let’s be honest is not what they are there for in the first place.
It used to be like this for Boxing. The Boxing lodges and the noble art have always been full of “not so noble” characters. But the reality is that Boxing requires A LOT more diligent practice and effort than MMA. It doesn’t matter how tough you are. In a Boxing ring you either “Box” or you get BADLY hurt.
What I am saying here is simple. If I take your legs away and your clinches or take downs and anything else you would use “INSTINCTIVELY” in a “brawl “and I leave you there “BOXING” (NOT fighting) in a ring, you better know what you are doing. Also “brawlers” didn’t cope too well with the commitment required in Boxing and the majority would eventually leave. After learning how to trough a few good punches in the process maybe.
I am pretty sure it would be the same if they went to try a “Muay Thai” or Wrestling school. These are extremely effective arts, but just as Boxing they require time to master the skills to a good degree of execution.
MMA is different; within a matter of days you’ll be punching and kicking and throwing and all that, and guess what? It just feels so natural. At the end of the day is the only sport that can immediately bring you close to being in a brawl. So it’s not going to be completely unknown territory for a “brawler”is it? And if he’s tough and aggressive enough, he can (with a bit of luck) even impose himself over a more experienced , technical and gifted fighter. He might not WIN on the scoring cards, but he can give them trouble. Sure fact.
Am I talking about a perfect “nobody” against a top ranked fighter such as GSP? No of course not. I am talking about that “nobody” against a seasoned regular student in an MMA Gym even with a few bouts on his belt. So MMA is almost technical brawling isn’t it? Yes we could say that. Would it work in the street where there are NO RULES?
We don’t question the validity of what Boxing or Muay Thai OR Wrestling could bring to the table when it comes to effective self-defense. And if you have a good standard in all of those areas you will surely be able to look after your self. So we don’t go around wondering if MMA would work in the street. Anyone that does that is a fool.
And now I can almost hear someone “saying”, there are too many rules and limitations in the cage – “If I was in a real fight I would do this and I would do that (eye gouging – testicles strikes – pressure points – the death touch – la “Mano di Travertino”. You name it.
Oh I forgot biting, that is a big one. They even sell instructional videos on biting. Brilliant. Yeah I know, sure you would.
Let’s get back to reality now. MMA has that appeal of unquestionable “effectiveness” that Martial Arts never before managed to achieve by itself before being codified into the perfect “blend” for combat. And brawlers (as well as the rest of us normal people) are buying into it. I have. So should you.
Being the simple people they are, “brawlers” just want to fight and I don’t blame them. I still read many forums and articles concerning a realistic approach to “street defence”. They of course stress the fact that in the street there are no rules (see above paragraph) and they all seem to be big and have many angles and different visions about “the right frame of mind” or “Killer Instinct” to adopt in a fight.
I am sorry but that is not something you can learn or teach. Trying to get people to dip into their darker side is a bad idea. Is brain washing and is bad news. Especially because these are guys that will be out there “thinking” they are tough. They are not. You don’t want to mess around with the wrong people. They don’t have ANYTHING to loose and they will gladly take you in their fucked places where their brain lives any day of the week JUST FOR FUN. People with a normal upbringing shouldn’t look into that. Your mum and dad have worked so hard to get you into a civilized world and give you education and the prospect of a bright future. Hold to those values tight that’s my advice.
Only life can make you tough. And if you are leaving a “not tough life” you should feel blessed. You are one of the lucky ones.
But the good news is that; regardless your upbringings you can still learn how to fight. That is something you can learn without the need to be “tough”. So in that respect, keep it simple just as a “brawler”does. Just go there and learn how to fight because is what you need/want to do. Fighting can be taught. Toughness’ : “forget about it”.
In regards of what art you should learn, of course I would say learn NUDDA – but if you are not lucky enough to find us anywhere near the comforts of your own town, then look into something that will give you results pretty soon if fighting is what you want to learn.
I am sorry to disappoint many here but if you don’t have a solid core of “Boxing” – “Muay Thai” and “Grappling” you simply don’t stand any chances against anyone that has got it. Unless of course, you want to fool yourself and keep play the “Grass hopper” with Mr Miagi.
You see this is actually quite simple. You don’t say Boxing is shit: you say: “he’s shit at Boxing”.
You just don’t question the effectiveness of Boxing (Muay Thai or Wrestling for that matter). You might question the person skills in the Art but not the Art itself. So yes there are Arts that are superiors to others simply because they work ALL the time. Even against different Arts. All you need is to get decent at it.
But there are Arts that don’t work against other Arts. They only work against themselves. That is like trying to catch up with your mirror image: a waste of time if you ask me.
HOWEVER if you bring a solid core of MMA skills into the ART you practice, then you will see that Art flourishing and you will become better at it. Why? Well that is simply because you will analyse things from a brawler point of view and you will start to keep things a lot more into prospective. That is without having to get as stupid as the brawler is.
I teach sometimes MMA “practitioners” looking for new ideas that they can use in the cage. It is really refreshing training with them as they look trough things without ever “over analyzing”.
The principles in NUDDA are all FMA based. But you got to make those principles work when it matters. If you can then you know you are on the right track.
Some people ask me sometimes “why don’t you teach JKD” Antonio? (As a matter of fact I am a well-qualified JKD Instructor)- Which I reply – “JKD as a principle is bound to eternity. But I still don’t think Bruce would be training or teaching the same way he used to 40 years ago. That stuff is simply out of date. So I had to let go. And it feels so good”. But again this will be another Blog.
I simply can’t be doing or teaching what I have learned over 15years ago. Much has changed over the last 15 years and I truly feel like I have evolved as a martial artist and as a person. I have been constantly “outgrowing my trousers” and that is how it should be. If you feel comfortable in the same clothes for too long is because you are refusing to “grow”. It’s a choice.
But that brawler has also made his choice. To beat anyone up in style with his new acquired MMA skills. And if you are into FMA and you are now telling me that you would show him your blade because you ALWAYS carry a knife , than you are just as screwed up as that brawler is and I hope someday you will face justice and get introduced to a fine mental hospital.
Embrace the evolution of combat and it will add up value to any other Art you might be training.
I still concentrate and mostly train FMA (both weaponry and empty hands) and Silat but I don’t let them define my training. Neither had I let MMA do that.
Bring a healthy balance of both into your table, and it will feel just as a good balanced diet. You will feel complete.
Just remember: It has to work. No Ifs No Buts.
Until the next time
Train hard and hit even harder