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What is your Stance? MMA and the significance of foundation

Recently, we watched UFC Champion Ronda Rousey defend her title against Challenger Sara McMann. Finishing her with a Left Knee to the Liver. (For more information on how the Liver Shot works, please visit our article “The Anatomy of the Liver Shot“).

I was struck by Ronda’s post fight comment “When we were going over Sara’s footage and how she fights, we saw that no one had really gone to the body with her,” Rousey said. “Being that she’s a wrestling style, she’s more likely to be bent over more and I just thought it would be really unexpected.” This quote from the article at the Las Vegas Sun.

Step foot into any reputable gym, and the first thing you should learn is the foundation, the Stance. Be it a Boxing Stance, Thai Boxing Stance, Wrestling Stance, etc. the basic stance has been optimized for the specific art it was developed from. But what does an MMA stance look like?

Many of the top level athletes in MMA today are converts from other disciplines. Sara McMann was and Olympic Wrestler, Ronda a Judo practitioner. As converts, these fighters bring with them baggage in the form of a ready stance. Something practiced so many times, it’s hard to unlearn, something that was studied and capitalized on by Rousey and her camp.

My interest in this topic was peaked before when I first began studying Thai Boxing with Ajarn Surachai Sirisute and he explained the difference between the American Pugilism, Basic Western Boxing Stance (in contrast to the John L. Sullivan Stance, the cross guard or the Archie More style) and then again when I spoke with Catch Legend Billy Robinson and he discussed the differences between the Amateur Wrestling Stance and the Catch As Catch Can Stance.

So what are these differences, why have these stances evolved as such, and what does any of this have to do with MMA? Lets start by examining the stances from a few of the arts found more prevalently in MMA. Mind you, each art, has multiple forms and variations of their basic ready stance. We will attempt to demonstrate the most generalized form that is representative of it’s respective art.

Boxing Stance

The American Pugilism Boxing Stance.  Click here to see it from various angles

The American Pugilism Boxing Stance. Click here to see it from various angles

Notice both feet are turned at a 45 degree angle. This blades the body and brings the liver further back protecting it with distance and the elbows from the opponent. Since there are no attacks to the legs allowed in boxing there is no penalty for turning in the front foot and exposing the sciatic nerve. There is a slight crouch which also protects the body and shrinks the target zones.

Thai Boxing Stance

Basic Thai Boxing Stance.  Click to see it from various angles.

Basic Thai Boxing Stance. Click to see it from various angles.

Here you see more of an upright stance. This guards against knees and kicks which may be directed at the head. Only the rear foot is turned at a 45 degree angle, this makes the hips square up to the opponent, exposing the liver, but also bringing 4 of the more powerful, rear side weapons (shin, knee, elbow, fist) closer to the opponent and therefore easier to bring to bear. Having the front foot pointing straight forward also aids in protecting against leg attacks to the sciatic nerve. The hands are held further outward which helps to prevent the opponent from grabbing and pulling the head downward. The hand positioning also assists in defending against the heavy force of a shin in the event of a head kick, but the stance does so at the cost of exposing the body.

Amateur Wrestling Stance

The Amateur Wrestling Stance.  Click to see from various angles.

The Amateur Wrestling Stance. Click to see from various angles.

This stance is optimized for defense against takedowns. The hips are square much like in Thai Boxing, but the crouch is similar to that found in a Boxing stance. The hands are held close, to guard against attacks such as arm drags etc. and also to be able to defend the legs in the event of a shot. As there are no chokes or neck cranks allowed in Amateur Wrestling, there is no penalty for exposing the head or neck.

Catch Wrestling Stance

The Catch As Catch Can Wrestling Stance

The Catch As Catch Can Wrestling Stance. Click on the image to see from various angles.

In contrast to the Amateur Wrestling Stance, the Catch Wrestling Stance is upright, this exposes the legs for shot style attacks but maximizes the defense of the head and neck as Neck Cranks and Chokes are 100% legal in Catch. Often times an opponent who shoots in on the legs and is unable to immediately effect a takedown, looses the match to a technique such as the Grovit.

The arms and elbows are held close to the body to defend against Underhooks, Body Locks and Arm Drags, and as with Amateur Wrestling, there is no striking allowed thus there is no penalty for exposing the face and head to these types of attacks.

So the next question is, what is the best way to approach fighting in MMA? Would it be best to develop a new, hybridized stance, specifically designed for the complexities of the cage? Or would it be best to transition from one purpose built stance to another based on your intentions?

Like anything, there are pros and cons to each approach. I don’t believe that a generalized stance would be as effective at any one specific task as a specialized stance. However, specialized stances can be exploited and can sometimes be a “tell” to your opponent.

Be sure to leave a comment and share with us your stance on MMA and the best approach to the foundation, the stance.

MMA Footwork For Beginners

This week’s blog post is a Damage Control MMA exclusive. That’s right faithful Damage Controllers, no youtube updates this week. Just a sneak peek into what we’ve been working on in the Members Area of our little project as of late. Basic Punch Defenses.

Who knew such a simple, and easy to learn technique could be such an effective and powerful tool. Stepping and Sliding Back, Stepping and Sliding Forward. That’s it! That’s all there is to it. The hard part is actually using it. People will move back but won’t spring into their former position. Or they’ll panic and simply cover up, neglecting to utilize their footwork all together.

One of the most valuable aspects of using footwork as the foundation for all of your defensive skills is that it is very general purpose. The same Step and Slide Back can be used to evade the Jab, the Cross, the Hook, Overhand, Uppercut, Straight Right, Jab Cross Combination, Spinning Backfist, the list goes on. One size pretty much fits all when it comes to using footwork as your first line of defense as can be seen in the last portion of the video.

We hope you enjoyed this week’s blog post and we hope you’ll join us for more DamageControlMMA.com in the future.

MMA Techniques In Real Fights: Southpaw Fighting

When you watch a technique video online and read the comments it can be difficult to tell which if any are legit and whether or not the technique will really work.

This can be the case especially if you haven’t had a chance to build up a solid foundation and understanding through experience.

Naysayers will argue, “That will never work, because all you’d have to do is blah blah.” There are times when these arguments have merit and others when such claims are baseless.

So how do you know which claims to believe?

Well one way is to simply watch the techniques being used in actual fights.

And that is exactly what we present to you this week on Damage Control MMA. Earlier this year we presented our members with a 16 video instructional on How to Counter a Southpaw and shared a few of the clips with the public in our blog post on the subject.

As you can see in the video above, it doesn’t need to be fancy, hard to learn, or overly complex to be effective. And that’s what we specialize in here at DamageControlMMA.com Bringing our members, simple, easy to learn, effective techniques that give results.

Let the naysayers type on. 90% of them talk loud and say nothing. They never present original, informative material of their own. They’ve never posted any videos let alone competed, or shown proof of their expertise in fights of their own or through their student body.

You have our guarantee that whenever possible we will show you our techniques being applied, personally or by our fighters/students whenever possible. We’ve done it since the beginning and will continue to do so throughout the life of this project.

If you’ve experienced good results with our techniques, or even seen examples of techniques we’ve taught used effectively in fights, please let us know in the comments below.

 

Happy Hunting!

UK MMA: Dan Hardy Boxing Combination

The power of the Martial Arts to bring people together, to forge bonds and foster new friendships is nearly unparalleled in my opinion. Next week we will be sharing a proof of concept video demonstrating the use of techniques we’ve shared here on DamageControlMMA.com in actual fights. It is our way of showing that actions speak louder than words.

In addition to a ton of support and positive feedback, we’ve also received our fair share of insults and negative comments. For the most part we’ve got pretty thick skins. We rarely give any thought to these types of attacks. Experience has taught us that friends can do you much more good than you can ever harm an enemy. Which is another way of saying, with a limited amount of time on this earth, and a limited energy, you can choose to spend them contributing to the abyss of hatred and negativity, or you can use them to cultivate positive mojo and to add goodness to this world.

Damage Control MMA Member Robert Carlin is a perfect example of the latter. Over the years we’ve forged a friendship and now, we are all reaping the benefits, the positive vibrations and goodness that he and his team at Antonine MMA has decided to share with us. An awesome clip with UFC Veteran Dan Hardy who demonstrates a slick Boxing Combination.

Remember, you can use your powers to make more happiness on this earth, or you can use them to create more despair. Robert has used his to create more happiness and for that I am grateful. Thank you good friend. We wish you and your team, much happiness and many good days.

Live long Damage Controllers and be excellent to one and other.

Muay Thai Knee Set Up Combination

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A friend of mine once expressed that, in his humble opinion, the keys to being a good Martial Artist were quite similar to those involved with being a good Magician. He must have sensed my lack of comprehension as he continued to explain himself. The essence of pulling off any trick is misdirection.

Whether this is accomplished with the beautiful and scantily clad assistant, hand gestures or smoke and mirrors is all just a matter of how you want to accomplish this. Mercifully neither Kiser nor I are scantily clad and neither of us has employed smoke or mirrors… yet, but we certainly do our share of misdirecting our opponents. Whether it’s attacking the neck in order to secure a submission on someone’s arm or as in the case of this video, drawing our opponent’s attention to their head so that we can access his ribs, spleen or liver with our knee, the concept applies.

Look left, go right. Touch high, go low. Squeeze the wrist to twist the foot. The concept is basic and when applied, you will make your own kind of magic on the mats. No go out there and get David Blain on your friends.

MMA Cornermen: Unsung Heros Part 1

What fighter worth his salt would ever go into a fight without padding his proverbial hand as much as possible in his favor?

Having a rock solid wing man is one of the most overlooked and under rated pieces of prep work that a fighter can have in place for his/her up coming fight.

If you’ve ever taken the time to listen to the corners during a fight, you’d be surprised at the variance in ability and quality. It’s amazing how often the advice you hear being shouted from the corner is something along the lines of “F*** him up bro!” Really?

An important part of any successful competition is communication between Coach/Instructor and Student/Competitor.

This article will focus on a couple of methods we use to communicate to our students when they are in the middle of their matches. They can however, be applied to effectivly communicating during any traumatic or stressful event.

A good coach is like a second pair of eyes for their student. But what the coach sees is useless if he/she is unable to communicate that information to his/her student.

Below are a list of tips that we have found helpful in communicating to our students when they are in the middle of a match.

Less is more… Keep It simple

If there is a constant barrage of chatter comming from the sidelines, it tends to blend in with the myriad of other noises already being muted by the tunnel vision/hearing experienced by the student. Be patient, hold your tongue and only bark out an occasional observation. AND when you do give some instruction, keep it simple. Suggestions such as this, “slip the jab, then uppercut, overhand, left hook right kick and shoot.” Simply are too much for a student under duress to handle. Something like the following would be more helpful “SLip and counter”.

Use the student’s name.

During one of his fights, Trevor “Little Bang” Osborn related that when everyone was shouting, he didn’t know who was saying what to whom. He didn’t know if it was the opposing team or our team speaking to the other competitor or to him and pretty soon he simply tuned it all out… that is until he heard us shout his name. Then he was able to take focus and listen.

Proper use of use of this method would sound something like this:

“Trevor, be first.”
“Trevor, circle! Keep your back off the cage.”
“Trevor, Go Now!”

Make eye contact.

When your student is fatigued and or rocked they tend to do a little slot machine number with their eyes. Their head will roll lazily around and their eyes will roll up under their lids etc.

If this happens between rounds, control their head with your hands and force them to look into your eyes.

If they are in a contol position mid-round, tell them to look at you. This will again, help to re-focus them, not just on your instruction, but also onto the task at hand.

Trigger Words

Trigger Words are words or phrases whose meaning you and your students have agreed upon. They are words that have been used during training sessions leading up to the event so that the student is used to hearing them and reacting to them.

For instance, we use the Trigger Words “Go Now”. We all know that this means, it means that there is 30 seconds left in the round. We have trained the student to go all out upon hearing that phrase (Pavlov eat your heart out). “Establish Base” means, chill out. Don’t blow your wad just yet. Re-establish your position and calmly look for openings and opportunities.

These phrases should be reinforced and used repeatedly in the gym during training sessions.

Don’t use more than one or two Trigger Words in your gym. The more Trigger Words you have, the less impact and significance they carry.

Communicate Visually with Hand Signals and Expressions

There are many times that a student’s battle stress will completely debilitate their ability to hear your voice. There are also times that the venue is so loud that your voice simply cannot be heard above the rest of the noise. In these instances it is helpful to commuicate visually as well as verbally. For instance, we will point to our eyes, then look up and point to the ceiling if we want our students to arch their backs more, lift their head and put more body into straightening out the armlock, guillotine, etc.

We’ll point to the ceiling and loop our finger around in a circle if we want the student to relax and burn some time off the clock.

And remember… every communication should be prefixed with your student’s name.

I hope these tips are helpful to you and your crew and we wish you all the best of luck. Train hard… we’ll see you out on the mat!

MMA Training Camp CSW Style

(At about 5:19 in the video above you can see the fundamentals of the movement that we use to accomplish the Leg Lock Counter to the Arm Bar Flower Sweep Technique)

After the Paypal debacle (suckers screwed me over, refused to allow me to close my accounts and then had the nerve to send me a “customer service survey”), it was a welcomed and refreshing change of pace to head out to sunny California for my annual pilgrimage to Erik Paulson’s Fighter/Instructor CSW Camp.

As can be expected, the learning was non-stop. Everywhere you turned there was an opportunity for growth and the soaking up of Martial wisdom.

One of the aspects of camp I enjoy is being surrounded by people who are just about as crazy and fanatical about the Martial Arts as I am.

Sensei Paulson and Ajarn Greg Nelson converse with Khuen Khru Vic Spatola the guy responsible for testing me for my Thai Boxing Instructorship under Ajarn Chai.

When your life and mind are occupied by Martial Arts the same way that Rainman thinks about Kmart tighty whitites and Judge Wapner, you start to wonder about your own sanity. But having an opportunity to be in the environment that Sensei Paulson provides, gives lunatics like me a chance to kick back and simply feel like part of the gang.

For me there are really 3 seminars taking place simultaneously at a camp like this.

First is the main seminar. You learn from the likes of Erik Paulson, Greg Nelson, Rigan Machado, Marvin Cook, and Nick Saignac, and you drill the many techniques that they share during their segments. Second is what you pick up from the other high level instructors and fighters that you drill with, spar with, and interact with. You get to see how they’ve tweaked the material you both learned the year before, you get to see tricks that get developed in their relatively isolated neck of the woods and you get to see how the system you’ve developed in your locale fares versus those from around the world.

Lastly, there are the life lessons shared and discussed off camera, during a lunch break, in the hotel lobby. You realize that you’re not alone in your pursuit of Martial excellence, in your attempts to build up a school, and in the stresses and occasional heart breaks that accompany such a journey. You learn tactics for survival, and gain strength from the fact that others have endured and overcome. You see who your instructors look up to and who they glean wisdom from.

As Khuen Khru Nino Pilla said to me this year “It’s so tempting to be seduced into fixing your attentions to the young fighters, winning belts and making the highlight reel, but really your attention should be focused on the old masters (like Billy Robinson, Cacoy Cañete, Dan Inosanto, Buddy Tompson). They have had so much more time to perfect and understand the craft. And more importantly, they hold the wisdom for what is to come for all of us, as we will all get older (if we are lucky), but none of us will ever get younger like those fighters that everyone sees and idolizes on T.V.”

Now that right there was worth the price of admission for me.

But there’s much more that I take away from the CSW Camp experience. It’s a chance for me to see old friends.

The true measure of a great instructor is his students. Eddie Abney, really pushed me and made me think during our sparring rounds. I would expect no less from a student of Khuen Khru Alvin Chan.

Seniors and mentors like Khuen Khru Alvin Chan, who never ceases to amaze me with his kindness and increasing enthusiasm for our chosen profession.

Or Khuen Khru Joe Cargado, who puts up with my joking around and humors my strange quirks.

As I was lining up my sparring partners (to ensure that I wasn’t going to get maimed or destroyed by the likes of the Ben Jones that were amongst the ranks), I was hollering out to my friends “James, you’re 1, Joe, you’re 2, Brandon, you’re 3,” etc. etc. Joe hollers out to each of them, “Yeah, take a number!”

It’s a wonderful place to be, and a real privilege to be able to go, and to be a young kid again, if only for a few days. I returned home, tired, sore, and bursting at the seams with new moves, new ideas and a deeper understanding of the Martial Life Style. And for those of you loyal followers who are wondering, I tapped out that evil wolf this time around. I hope I can do it again the next time I’m on the mats at the World CSW Headquarters, living my life to the fullest.

How To Fight A Southpaw

“What’s a southpaw? It means you’re left-handed. A southpaw throws your timin’ off, see? Other guys, it makes ’em look awkward. Nobody wants to look awkward.

You know where southpaw came from? A long time ago, a couple of hundred years ago, this guy was fightin’. I think it was around Philadelphia. He was left-handed. His arm was facin’ towards New Jersey. And that’s south, so naturally, they called him Southpaw.

You see? Southpaw, South Jersey, South Camden, Southpaw… You know what I mean?”

– Sylvester Stallone, “Rocky” –

Rocky had it right when he said that nobody wants to look awkward.

And we’re going to give you a few tips to help you with that situation.

Fighting a left handed fighter or “Southpaw” can be a difficult proposition. Almost everything you do is backwards.

More times than not, you’re taught to lead with your Jab, but with a Southpaw, your more often encouraged to use your straight right.

The video below will explain some of the basics behind why this is the case.

As an Orthodox Fighter (Right handed with a Left Handed Lead) the cornerstone of counter Southpaw tactics is to move towards your left and keep your lead foot on the outside of your opponent’s lead foot. This same theory applies to a Southpaw fighting an Orthodox Fighter.

And although the emphasis of a lead straight right, shown in the video above has it’s origins in American Pugilism, the technique is so sound that it carries over to Muay Thai, Kickboxing and MMA. It works well in the realms of Mixed Martial Arts because of it’s simplicity, power and the fact that your lead hand can still be used to fend off takedown attempts should they occur during your attack.

That is not to say that there aren’t other weapons that are also effective, but if you watch the following video, you will see that many of the most devastating and prevalent strikes are the lead straight left (for Pacquiao) and lead straight right (for his Orthodox foes).

In addition to the hands, there are other weapons that we as Mixed Martial Artists can bring to bear vs the Southpaw, so long as you adhere to the fundamental of staying outside that lead foot of his, and thus further away from his power tools.

Another such technique has been recently popularized by Anderson Silva as a result of his KO victory over Vitor Belfort. In this case we had 2 Southpaws squaring off and thus the outside lead foot rule was not in effect. Nevertheless, the fight proved the effectiveness of the Front Snap Kick for MMA, although the kick has been around for centuries.

There are going to be times when your opponent is much more experienced at playing the outside lead foot and Southpaw game than you are. After all, a Southpaw gets to go up against Orthodox fighters all the time, while Orthodox fighters only see Southpaws every once in a while. Below is one way you can take that advantage away from your opponent.

Fighting for the clinch or a takedown aren’t the only way to handle and opponent who simply owns the outside lead game. We’ve addressed this as well as shown some ideas outside the conventional Counter Southpaw box in our members only area where we have a total of 15 + videos dedicated to the Southpaw series, in addition to the 230 videos which cover all aspects of the MMA game.

If you’ve enjoyed the articles and videos brought to you by www.DamageControlMMA.com please show your support by picking up a membership, telling a friend about our site, friending us on facebook, or joining the discussions on our free forum at www.DamageControlMMA.com/forum/

Doing so helps us to continue on our journey and bring you top quality instruction.

Until next time, keep your lead foot on the outside of your opponents foot, keep your hands up and your chin down.

The MMA Jab

From the Basic Fighting Stance: feet shoulder width apart, hands up, chin down, elbows protecting the ribs.

The Basic Stationary Jab extends straight from the chin towards the target with no wind up or preparatory movements. Keep your arms loose and relaxed. As your fist moves away from your jaw, your left shoulder should raise to protect your chin.

At the last moment your fist should turn over so that your palm faces the floor. As you hit the target tense up your fist and focus the force into your first two (your two largest) knuckles. Notice how Khru Yamasaki has “Sandwiched” his chin between his left shoulder and right fist.

The Jab returns on the same LINE as it traveled to the target. Be sure to keep your left shoulder raised as you bring your fist STRAIGHT back to its starting point. Avoid a circular or “rowing” motion on the return stroke as this leaves you open for any number of counter strikes.

The Jab is completed only after you’ve safely returned to your ready position.

Whether you’re a Boxer, Kickboxer, Muay Thai Practitioner or MMA Fighter, the Jab is an elemental part of the striking game.

It is the stinging bee immortalized in Ali’s timeless prose. A lightning fast, rapid fire, multirole, weapon, that in the hands of a qualified artist, can tattoo a face as quick as a convict’s pen gun.

Sugar Ray Leonard was said to have used numerous different types of jab to seal his place in history as one of Boxing’s Greats and that is perhaps one the qualities that makes the Jab so versatile and important. Many times, the Jab sets the stage for more sophisticated, and committed attacks.

It tests for weaknesses in your opponent’s guard. It probes for information on range and reflexive responses.

It’s like a special forces recon unit that reports back to central command and lets it know the number and strength of the enemy and what tools would be best utilized to destroy them.

But the Jab is not merely an information gatherer.

Like a hollow point 9 mm, some may say it lacks knock down power, but when well placed, the Jab has stunned if not stopped many a prize fighter. Ali put so many rounds on target during a bout against Patterson that Patterson had to take a knee from the sheer number of blows.

Tyson and Morrison have won fights outright with stiff Jabs used in isolation to incapacitate their opponents.

In the realm of MMA, the Jab is ideal as it leaves you less vulnerable to a takedown.

Dominic Cruz and Miguel Torres are both very talented at using it in this capacity, and with the smaller gloves, it has more potential to cause cuts and swelling.

BJ Penn was very effective in using the Jab to disrupt Sean Sherk’s offensive game plan.

This simple little tool can be used in so many ways and across so many different combative platforms. One would do well to study it in depth and to develop one’s own Jab.

The punch itself is relatively easy to learn, but how to set it up and perfect it’s various attributes (speed, snap, power, range, information gathering and intelligence) takes time and dedication.

Having a qualified coach/instructor to help you along the way can shave years off it’s development.

Best of luck to you as you explore and learn to appreciate this energy saving, high yield punch. Until next time, train smart, work hard, be excellent to each other and happy hunting!

The Devastating Muay Thai Four Count

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The Thai Boxing Association’s Muay Thai 4 Count is a very versatile and multifaceted combination. It can be used in flow as a fighting combination, or in class as a teaching tool.

The Muay Thai 4 Count develops your ability to flow seamlessly from kicking range to straight arm punching range to bent arm punching range and back out into kicking range.

Like many Boxing and Muay Thai Combinations, it’s simplicity lends itself to near limitless permutations. These are expressed in various targets, timings, degrees of angulation, accounts for various opponent reactions and weight distribution, and so on.

For the simple Left Kick + Straight Right + Left Hook + Right Kick version alone, you can put together 56 different combinations based on targeting alone.

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the HeadLeft Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the HeadLeft Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Body
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Body
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Body
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Body

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Head

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Body
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Body
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Body
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Body

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Outer Thigh

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Body + Left Hook to the Head + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle

Left Kick to the Head + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Body + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Inner Thigh + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle
Left Kick to the Ankle + Straight Right to the Head + Left Hook to the Body + Right Kick To the Calve/Ankle

I may have even missed some but I think you get the point. And if you start to add timings, angulations, etc. the variations possible for the simple Left Kick + Straight Right + Left Hook + Right Kick are exponential.

I have learned much from my study of the Muay Thai 4 Count over the years. Not only has it helped me to learn how to employ an appropriate tool for a given range, it has helped me to learn how to manipulate my opponent’s body, weight distribution and angle by means of my striking.

For instance, the Left Kick to the Inner Thigh can be used to open your opponent’s stance and create a wider path for your Straight Right to land. Your Left Hook can be used to plant your opponent’s weight onto his lead leg, setting up a Right Kick to the outer thigh with diminished capacity for your opponent to raise his knee and spike your shin. The same Left Hook can be used to disguise your movement to the far or near side angle. And sometimes it can even move the opponent into the angle for you.

Wether you’re a beginner or a seasoned veteran, the Thai Boxing Association’s Muay Thai 4 Count is a rich and multi-layered combination, worthy of in depth study. Those who “Put themselves into it”, will reap the benefits on those various levels and enjoy the impact they will have on their Striking Game.

In our online MMA Academy, our members have access to:

  • Four Basic Instances of the Muay Thai 4 Count:
  • West Coast and East Coast Drifts
  • Moving The Head Offline Considerations
  • Pad Holder Tips.

You can find the techniques here if you have a membership.

Until next time.

Happy Hunting!