Just a quick story from the weekend. One of our instructors, Matt Frahm, was in a little altercation this past weekend. He works in a bar so it’s not entirely insane that it happened, but he’s not usually the guy it happens to! Now, I don’t want to get too deep into the description of the fight. Hopefully he’ll respond and give the breakdown from his perspective (probably not…. He’s a humble dude). But, I will say…. the drunk guy was actually punching…… as in….. injured a bouncer, really punching. Matt got to use several chokes. And the night ended with tough guy SITTING ON HIS HANDS, teary eyed and waiting for the cops!
Go ahead….. Take a moment to breathe that in. That is pure awesome.
But here’s where I actually wanted to go with this story-
Matt doesn’t spar. Ever.
He does a shit ton of BJJ. Rolls with the nastiest guys in the gym daily. Hell…. Has become one of the nastiest guys in the gym.
But…… Never spars with punches.
So, how’d that work?
1. He learned REAL BJJ! good BJJ doesn’t ALLOW punches! If you’re doing it right, the other guy “trying” to hit you doesn’t matter at all. Doesn’t change your game plan AT ALL. Because Matt learned, and continues to train in AUTHENTIC BJJ…… The “rolling” he does every day still served him well.
2. He DRILLS everyday! He doesn’t even mean to. He’s one of our teachers. So every time he teaches a class he discusses self defense and gets reps in of all the moves that don’t occur in “rolling”. Every time a student asks him about self defense applications he’s got to demonstrate it done right, and it’s another rep. Another visualization. He’s not just thinking of himself when he trains. He realizes that students are watching him to learn, so he’s careful to do everything right, not just good enough for THAT circumstance. So he maintains the distances as taught. And yep, that’s more reps of the right way. He also watches a lot of other people train with striking. Cause yes, we have a lot of kids that enjoying MMA. So he watches people APPLY BJJ against strikes. And watches when they break rules (distances, distractions), they pay for it. All these things keep the application of BJJ against someone trying to hit him in his head. And that’s plenty for self defense.
No, it’s not plenty for competitive fighting. If you want to excel at a sport like MMA, you are gonna have to do it!
But, for self defense. Learning REAL BJJ CORRECTLY. Applying it correctly every time you train…. Even if lack of strikes doesn’t “force” you to. Visualizing, and studying the application of BJJ vs striking. And DRILLING THE MOVES THAT DON”T OCCUR IN “ROLLING”.
These are enough!
They always have been.
You don’t HAVE to get do MMA to be able to survive a fight.
You don’t have to get punched in the head in training if you don’t enjoy it.
But you must drill. You must visualize.
(And….. Obviously….. You must learn real BJJ!)