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Old 10-22-2008, 08:49 AM   #11
Anton Emery
Join Date: Sep 2007
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If you are interested in some further reading on training check out Matt Thortons blog, who i train under.


Like others have said, few things focus me more than intense physical combat with another person. There are times when i go into class, everything seems to be clicking, and when grappling its like my mind is still and my body is just doing what its been taught. Those are usually the times when i do the best.

Grappling with a fully resisting opponent has a way of making alot of other things in life seem much easier. I imagine its similar with Muay Thai or any other striking art.

Give it a try, and let us know what you think.

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Old 10-22-2008, 09:34 AM   #12
Daniel Labuz
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Location: Binghamton, NY
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Yes, I will probably try this within the next 2-3 weeks depending on scheduling with classes and my usual training. I just need something to do during nights when there is no school work to be done, I'm sick of wasting time when I could be doing something productive!
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Old 10-22-2008, 03:35 PM   #13
Peter Dell'Orto
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My experience has always been it's the school more than the style. How you get on with your fellow practitioners and the teacher matters more than the style.

It sounds like this school runs both BJJ and MT classes, so you may as well try both. You'll be more well-rounded if you do both, and it's well worth trying both classes.

I have to say though, I don't really think of MT as being meditative or spiritual...wherever I've been that it was taught, it was always guys with gloves on kicking the hell out of each other. Even my kendo class was more meditative, and that basically involved kids in armor whacking each other with sticks.

Good luck with this! I'm always happy to see people try out martial arts. I was that skinny, picked-last, picked-on kid until I started doing martial arts...I finally found something physical I was good at. Or, not excruciatingly bad at. So they occupy a special place in my heart.
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Old 10-25-2008, 03:11 PM   #14
Grissim Connery
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Originally Posted by Daniel Labuz View Post
Thanks for the information, appreciate it.

Also, is it harder to get started in either of these? I have no prior experience in any grappling or striking sports, so would this be a factor in which one to choose? I'm sure I'll start out an extreme novice either way.
don't worry about starting as a novice. everybody has to. you may find that your learning curve is a lot better than other people's.

if you want to excel faster and not be a novice for as long, follow some of these steps:

1. don't be stubborn, recognize when somebody's gotten the better of you and accept it
2. try to recognize patterns of when you are getting beaten - this could be a specific position or a certain movement
3. when somebody dominates you somewhere, ask them what they were doing afterwards - normally they know exactly what they did, and they also know how to stop it. if they don't tell you what they did, they either genuinely don't know, or they dont' want to tell you. if the latter is the case, then that guy sucks. if the whole school is like that, FIND ANOTHER SCHOOL. your school should be your team. you're not there to compete with them
4. try not to muscle moves - when you can roll and not get tired, you're probably using proper technique.
5. get a lot of different people to show you how to do a move - most the time, the instructor knows best, but sometimes random people can explain it in a way that makes sense to you
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Old 10-25-2008, 10:09 PM   #15
Derek Weaver
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Originally Posted by Eric Hall View Post
I have heard many times and from many people, that they would give up all their training (of whatever martial art they are training in) for one month of BJJ.

I would suggest trying to find a Krav Maga gym. Any martial art that is used by Israeli Special Forces is a-ok in my book.

But only you can answer which would work best for you.
+1. I'm a Krav Maga practitioner (well, former and once again in the next few months once I get settled a bit more with some other stuff going on in my life) and wouldn't suggest anything else if people aren't looking to compete.

I've done a gun defense seminar with Sam Sade (awesome, awesome experience) and consider it the pinnacle of self defense. Contrary to popular belief, you never want to be on the ground in a street fight. You'll either get your head smashed against the concrete, soccer kicked by one of your opponents buddies or over powered. If you're on your feet you have a puncher's chance... or can still run. Krav will teach you TD defense, escapes and insane conditioning. To take a bare knuckle punch is largely reliant upon being in tip top conditioning.

That said...

If you're looking to satisfy an urge for competition, BJJ is best as it's more conducive to longevity in training.

I also spent a fair amount of time training in Muay Thai... absolutely loved it. Never did care much for BJJ as I like punching things more I guess. Muay Thai is intense in that the tolerance to pain and the timing and diversity of strikes are intense. Of course, this applies to BJJ as well, however in a far different way.

See if they allow you to do free or cheap intro. classes and then make up your mind.
And if you don't think kettleball squat cleans are difficult, I say, step up to the med-ball
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Old 10-26-2008, 05:18 AM   #16
Derek Simonds
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Lots of really great responses in this thread. Here are my .02.

1) I agree with Peter MT is an awesome art but I get no meditative benefit from it. The main reason I don't train MT more often is that I hate getting punched in the face. Pretty much that is a standard part of the deal with MT. I have also done Kendo and when you are putting on your armor at least you are meditating (or supposed to be) at that moment before the chaos starts.

2) I also agree with Ben. For me it is a stillness in my mind that settles in right before I grapple with someone. I can be laughing and joking around but when they say grapple I just flip the switch and everything changes. I watch video of myself grappling and see myself doing things I don't remember even thinking about.

3) Peter also nailed it with check out the school and the vibe. If you fit in with them and feel comfortable the rest will fall into place.

For what it is worth I do MMA two days a week along with No-Gi BJJ and BJJ 1 to 2 days a week schedule permitting. This way I am at least working a little on the stand up aspects of the game. In the end if you like the school and you practice your zazen on the side I think you will be amazed at the results.

One last thought. I am sure you are in a different place then I was mentally at the time. When I trained Akido we used to end our sessions with some meditation. Most of the time I meditated so well I would just fall asleep. Not exactly what I was after .
What we think, or what we know, or what we believe, is in the end, of little consequence. The only thing of consequence is what we do. -John Ruskin

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Old 01-10-2009, 10:13 PM   #17
Reed Winn
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Richmond
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My qualifications for commenting: Been training BJJ for about a year and a half, competed some, observed MT people train.

Neither MT nor BJJ explicitly involve any sort of meditation or suchlike. On the other hand to get good at BJJ you have to use you head. You have to think hard about what you're doing on and off the mat. You need to visualize moves and practice a lot. There is always more to learn with BJJ.

In competition I find that all other thoughts are totally gone from my mind and my focus is 99% on who I'm fighting and the rest on my teammate who is giving me advice. You pretty much have no choice but to focus on winning. Competition is really fun, you get to see what you can do when you go 100%.

As others have said there are other benefits to learning BJJ. I would imagine they get more pronounced as you learn more but as I'm not that good yet I don't know. Learning to value technique over strength, learning control, base, pressure, how to tone yourself down to roll with smaller/worse people, etc all probably carries some sort of mental benefit.

With MT, if you want to actually be good, you need to get a really good understanding of timing and angles and such. The pain probably focuses you in some way. I don't know much about MT except that it's harder conditioning wise than BJJ.

If I were you I'd go with BJJ. I'm not sure where you are getting this idea that judo is full of meditation and such. From what I understand it's generally trained much like BJJ except possibly harder intensity, more japanese names and obviously a lot more standup.
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