Grappling, take downs and ground work

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Discussion' started by pjbennett, Jun 24, 2016.

  1. pjbennett

    pjbennett New Member


    I have a background in Muay Thai (many years and fought at inter club level). I have also practiced Japanese Ju Jitsu (6 months) and Krav Maga (2 years).

    I had to give up Muay Thai as my 40 year old back can't handle the repeated kicks anymore. This is what led me to Krav which allowed me to use many of my Thai techniques but at a much lower intensity so my back survived.

    I recently gave up Krav as I found it to be a bit too staged and pretend so I have taken up boxing as my hands have always been slow and it brings back the sharpness that being hit properly by a skilled non submissive opponent brings as does trying hit someone who isn't just standing there and taking it;)

    Krav gave me an understanding of take downs and groundwork in that I enjoy it and am unfortunately no good at it. I know you should avoid going to the ground in a street situation but seeing as every man and his dog seem to be doing mma these days it seems something to be prepared for. It also taught me that if you're up against someone who knows what they're doing you're stuck.

    I would quite like to add some ground work, grappling and take downs to my repertoire. My focus is self defence over gradings and competing but my krav experience has taught me that a self defence system doesn't suit me as I quite enjoy a good scrap as part of my training therefore a sport/martial art environment is better for me!

    I recently tried a wrestling class. I really enjoyed it and the people there were great. However repeated penetration steps have aggravated my knee. I'd also be worried about knees on concrete in a street situation. I'm not completely closed to the idea as enjoyment is as important as anything but my knee does concern me.

    I also have BJJ (gi and non gi), judo and any other art that you can think of near to me.

    Does anyone have any opinions on whether judo, wrestling or BJJ would be best suited to taking someone down if, say you were one on one and you were being outstruck and generally be quickly effective on the ground to get back out of the way.

    There may be other alternatives that I've not considered too.

    Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

    Many thanks in advance.
  2. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Bjj I would say can be trained safest at the lowest intensity. You can really ask your partner to go easy and normally there is a lot of control.
  3. Dead_pool

    Dead_pool Spes mea in nihil Deus MAP 2017 Moi Award

    Judo is great, but is very very hard on the body.

    Id say BJJ for the trainability factor.

    Didnt we have the discussion a year ago already?
  4. YouKnowWho

    YouKnowWho Valued Member

    I will suggest wrestling. If you can use "single leg" or "double legs" to take your opponent down, you may not need to learn other throws. You don't need to get a sleeve grip and a lapel grip before you can throw your opponent. If your opponent wants to attack you, he has to step in his leading leg. That opportunity to get your opponent's leading leg will always be there.
  5. Knee Rider

    Knee Rider Valued Member Supporter

    If you have a wrestling class that focuses on upper body grappling ie Greco that could be easier on the knees than freestyle, judo or BJJ and your Thai clinch should transition nicely.
  6. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member

    These days bjj is moving away from take downs in competition and in a sport art where competition goes most of the training follows. So you may need to look a little to find a BJJ club that teaches throwing well.

    This said Bjj is much lower impact and puts much less strain on the knees than standing grappling.

    At the risk of starting an argument - I would suggest that if you are interested in self defense you do not want to focus on throwing the other person but to concentrate on learning how to resist being thrown or taken down yourself. At the same time you need to put effort on learning to defend on the ground long enough to stand up again.

    To do this you need to train with people who know how to throw properly and are good at it, but you do not have to get particularly good at throwing yourself.
  7. YouKnowWho

    YouKnowWho Valued Member

    A good throw will put you in a dominate position. IMO, the training sequence should be:

    throwing skill -> ground skill

    A good "hip throw" can give you a good "arm bar".


    A good "head lock leg blocking throw" can give you a good "side mount".


    A good "double legs" can give you a goo "full mount".

    Last edited: Jun 25, 2016
  8. Knee Rider

    Knee Rider Valued Member Supporter

    The throwing skills might land you in dominant position but it doesn't mean you can secure/maintain it.

    If you are training to be a complete grappler then neither should be emphasised over the other IMO.
  9. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member

    You know who, I entirely agree with you. Any clean throw is likely to finish the opponent when they hit the floor and will set up a dominant position if they are not finished. In an ideal world all martial artists should know how to throw well. But it takes a lot of time and training to learn to throw well and it its very difficult to get a clean throw against an actively resisting opponent.

    In my opinion it is best by far to be an all round fighter with knowledge and skill in standing striking,standing grappling, throwing, ground grappling, and ground striking. But it takes a lot of time to develop all of these skills. not everybody has the time to learn these skills and, as a result, many people learning self defense need to priorities on what they learn.

    In my opinion for self defense grappling on the floor is a very dangerous position. going for the throw carries a significant risk of ending up on the floor if the throw is not completed cleanly. Therefore in my oppion in a world with limited time for training a greater benefit is gained for self defense by focusing on skills to resist throws, remain on the feet, to grapple, to strike and to run away and by focusing on fighting on the ground and getting back to the feet.
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2016
  10. Tom bayley

    Tom bayley Valued Member


    There are arts that include standing grappling with strikes and throws such as Hung gar or Baugwa. You might look at these for integrating your muay thai with your krav techniques.

    Heres a clip of some bugwa to show what I mean. at the end of the video thier is a short clip of two people playing. Its not full on sparring but it gives an idea of the how it can be used.

    Last edited: Jun 25, 2016
  11. YouKnowWho

    YouKnowWho Valued Member

    This is why even in a "pure sport wrestling", you should still consider what if your opponent just punches at your head. When you get into a clinch, your opponent can release his grip and punch at your head. To deal with that punch without giving up your grip is important.

    Here is an example. What does this move look like? Does it look like the WC Bon Shou?



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