Monday, June 14, 2010


I LOVE wrestling (or "rasslin'" as it is called in the Deep South)

It is physical chess. It embodies good conditioning, strength, speed, endurance, and intelligence. Done well, it is a formidable addition to your body mastery and your fighting vocabulary.

So before you go get tangled up, what are some key things to think about when grappling:

1) Going Down
Not much can happen in grapping until you get to the floor. There are a lot of ways to get there including single/double leg takedowns, throws, tackles, scoops, lifts, etc. There are some good common sense ideas about doing so with the highest percentage of success and control. Bear in mind tip number 2)

2) Do not get your head byond your lead toes
keep your head back and down, but NEVER let it extend over your toes. Once you do, you will get pancaked or sprawled to the mats at a disadvantage.

3) Hips in, insteps down
Do not dig with your toes. A good drive will stand you right back up.
You need to have your hips driving and pushing through constantly. Keep your insteps down so your opponent cannot get under your hip mass.

4) Off your knees
NEVER be on your knees. Instead, get on your insteps, with your hips driving through.

5) Make your opponent uncomfortable at all times
You should drive your hips and ride our opponent such that he always has trouble breathing and feels your weight pushing through. This helps make him tired and keeps him from developing a good defense.

6) Take the head/spine out of alignment at the earliest opportunity
and keep it from being re-aligned the best you can. Doing this takes away a lot of strength.

7) Use large muscle groups whenever possible
Your hips/legs and back are your primary drivers in wrestling. Use them rather than your arms/chest whenever you can. You will get much better results and last longer. This includes putting on the submissions, meaning that you should use your legs and back rather than arms and chest to get the tap.Lifts, drops, takedowns, and throws should also rely and the legs and back for power.

8) Chains
Every high percentage move has high percentage escapes - which lead to other high percentage follows-ups ad nauseum. Train in chains so you can get a feeling for the fluidity and mobility of real technique chains when you wrestle. Be as ballistic in the training as you can safely be without injuring your training partner.

9) Take The Base
It is important to remove your opponent's base at every opportunity, and to keep doing so in order to ensure that they cannot recover. Use arms and legs to wrap opponent and turk the legs to keep the base offline. At the same time, you must be careful not to give your opponent your own base. Keep your hips away, and driving in and down.

10) Pane of Glass
For the takedowns, imagine a pane of glass vertically between the oppnent's heels. This pane must be broken with your foot or leg, or you have not penetrated deeply enough to load onto your hips.

Happy "pretzeling"

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