In discussing the value of BJJ for self defense I always run into these statements. Now, I understand the logic they’re using to come to this conclusion, it’s just really naive. They are looking at a photo in their mind of a guy laying on his back with one guy in his guard, while the other 11 members of the evil doers just kick and stomp you to death. Now, the problem lies in the fact that this picture is accurate. The problem is that I’m not saying that BJJ can prevent this from happening. I’m saying nothing can! The real issue is that anyone who makes these statements, has never been in, or even witnessed a multiple opponent fight. My dad told me as a kid that “10 girl scouts will whip your ass!” That man was a genius! While I think the girl scouts in my hometown were probably gnarlier than most, I don’t think that was the only reason he said it. I think it’s the Lilliputian Concept. Gulliver’s Travels, right? He woke up surrounded by these tiny little people, but because of the sheer volume couldn’t really do anything. Think about it. Ants are tiny. But if you get enough of them together they can eat you! Look at prisons riots. UNARMED people take over a place being defended by people WITH GUNS! The point is if there are ENOUGH people INTENT on beating you up, you’re getting beat up.
The other reason that the original statement makes no sense is because, BJJ is MORE necessary in a group setting. The old saying “90% of all fights end up on the ground”, could be more accurate by saying that “90 percent of all one on one fights end up grappling.” Yes there is that 10% chance that you and said evil doer MAY square up and throw hands without any wrestling. But, if you’ve ever seen a group fight, you’ve seen some grappling! I’m not talking about the group “fights” where one guy sucker punches a victim and then a group jumps on him (There’s nothing you can do if you’re already out!). I’m talking about the other group fight, where after the initial sucker punch you don’t go down, and as you confront the bad guy, his buddy tackles you so they have a better chance. Guess what, now you’re grappling. If you have any chance at all, grappling will increase it! That brings me to another little diddy from my dad. “Get a hold of one. And, hurt him bad. Eleven dudes pulling you off of Jimmy, hurts less than twelve of em, kickin you to death!” Ah, the gems of my youth. I can tell you from past experience that this is true! You either have a better chance of survival , or at least you give somebody, something to remember!
Either way it is silly to think that in all of the documented limited rules fighting we’ve seen on tape in the last two decades, that the Crazy Drunken Monkey Tai Chi Karate-Fu that we all know beyond a shadow of a doubt will get you SMOOTH BEAT UP in a one on one fight, will suddenly work better if a dozen guys come after you! If it is worthless against one……. I think you see my point.
Besides, if you can’t reliably defeat even one unarmed opponent, is it really the time to discuss how to fight that armed band of ninjas? Slow down Turbo. Walk before you run. That is all.