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Wrestling’s Jab: The Basic Double Leg Takedown

I don’t really know why I’ve saved this one for so long before making it available to the public. I do that sometimes with techniques that have sentimental value to me. And this one does. I guess the technique itself isn’t all that unique. But whenever I watch it, and I watch it quite a bit, it reminds me of when I learned it from Coach Wells and to me

what was unique was how he taught the technique, which, for the sake of time, was basically, in a way that even a self proclaimed idiot like me could understand it.

On top of that, it wasn’t just the technique, it was the concept that he taught to me. That

the Double Leg is the Jab of Wrestling. A probing, long range technique used to measure the opponent’s responses and create openings for second and third beat techniques.

Sure it works as a stand alone technique, but when used in conjunction with a bigger, broader takedown scheme, it becomes something altogether different, better, more potent.

And thus began my quest to develop such a game. And under Coach Wells, it has been exceedingly easy. At least for me to understand… execution is an entirely different story, but as the old addage goes, only a poor craftsman blames his tools, and in the case of Coach Well’s takedown game, I know it’s not the tools that fail.

The quest continues to this day, as do my other pursuits. And

during a conversation with Coach Wells while we watched a couple of mutual friends fight at a recent MMA event, he imparted yet another idea that has hence forth brought about a second revelation in how I look at the takedown game in general.

I have for some time now attempted to develop “games” from every conceiveable position known to me. A “game” would constitute a series of at least 3 technique options for any given position/situation whereby at least one techniques covers any given opposing energy. This would be for escaping a postion, passing a guard, or in this case finishing a takedown.

As I spoke with Coach Wells I told him that I had felt that for the hips in, I was comfortable with his Takedown Trifecta “game” (Spiral Takedown, Knee Tap Takedown, Body Lock Takedown).

However, once hips were way, I didn’t feel like I had the same 3 or more options.

He explained to me that he had tried to offer me (and his other students) this in the form of an over hook series he had us working on and then I began to put the pieces together.

Days later,

as I shoveled the walks in front of my home, I contemplated this further and began to hypothosize that maybe what Chris had been teaching me would also answer another question that had been rattling around in the dusty, cavernous, emptiness of my brain. Why use and Underhook as opposed to an Overhook?

Why an Overhook as opposed to an Underhook? Was it a matter of personal preference? Was it a matter of body type or natural attributes?

Certainly, my hypothosis would include possibilities for the above, but what seemed to make just as much, if not more sense, especially after looking at the techniques that Coach Wells had presented (both for close range, hips in clinching as well as for medium/long range, hips out clinching) was that there was something consistent going on.

It would seem that the closer the hips, the more, the techniques favored the Underhook, which made sense mechanically, physiologically, and kinesiologically.

And conversely, it would seem that the farther the hips are away relative to each other, the more the techniques favorered the Overhook. Which too, made sense, as the farther the hips are back, the more your opponent is tempted to break the head, knee, toe rule in the frontal plane. In being situated in such a way, it would make sense that you would want to be able to exert presured downward to help him break this plane and the Overhook is a better tool for doing so than the Underhook in this situation.

I’ve been playing around with the idea of including a Flow Charting Program with the members area of DamageControlMMA.com and in light of this idea, I’ve thrown together a quick, dirty, diagram of how this hypothosis looks on paper.

Keep in mind, there are plenty of other techniques that could be filled in, different branches that could be added, exceptions, etc. etc., but my goal was to show the general idea of hips in and hips away and the correlating Underhooking/Overhooking Scheme and subsequent takedown options.

A Rapid Prototype Flowchart Drawn On A Whim To Demonstrate The Possible Connection Between Hip Distance and The Most Advantageous Arm Control (Overhook vs Underhook)

A Rapid Prototype Flowchart Drawn On A Whim To Demonstrate The Possible Connection Between Hip Distance and The Most Advantageous Arm Control (Overhook vs Underhook)

I’ve also added the other 3 techniques shared with us by Coach Wells, so that you can see the whole picture; i.e. the Double Leg Takedown as an entry into the Wellian Trifecta, The Spiral Takedown, Knee Tap and Body Lock (hips in, close range clinch *) game from Over, Under 50 – 50 Clinch Position.

The quest continues, as I am sure it will until my final days.

Remember, what I’ve presented here in terms of general principal (hips in = underhook vs hips away = overhook) is a hypothosis, which means, it is untested and unverified by those more qualified than I to make such generalizations. But at any rate, I hope it has at least given you some food for thought.

Best wishes and happy hunting!

The Anatomy of the Muay Thai MMA Leg Kick and Beyond

The Muay Thai Leg Kick has always held a special place in my heart.

One’s ultimate goal when fighting should always be to break the spirit of your opponent. When you knock someone out they have no choice in the matter. Their spirit is momentarily turned off. When you tap someone out, they realize that the smart move is to live to fight another day. But when you take someone out with a Leg Kick, they are perfectly conscious and aware. They can continue to fight if they want to.

Most times, they choose not to because of the excruciating pain and this is the moment that their spirit breaks.

How do I know this you ask? I’ve been there, on the receiving end, a couple of times.

The following is an in depth look at the anatomical structure of the nerves and muscles in the leg and the most efficient ways to render them inoperable. In addition we have included several set ups, combinations and techniques for using the information provided by the anatomical study.

As a side note, we learned from Dr. Cacciamani that there are two ways to cripple and immobilize the leg. 1 is an attack to the primary nerve structures (e.g. the Sciatic Nerve) and 2 is an attack on the muscle tissue. From our research, the difference is generally that nerve attacks immediately cause the temporary loss of control for the limb. Whereas muscle tissue attacks cause swelling, cramping/knotting, and gradual deterioration of muscle function.

This makes sense if you think about it. You can take out the structures that send messages to and from a muscle/group of muscles or you can pulverize the muscle itself. Bottom line is, if your opponent can’t or doesn’t want to move his/her leg anymore, you’ve pretty much done the job.

Included are some diagrams for reference. And below that are a series of videos showing how we like to apply the information we’ve learned from Dr. Cacciamani and from our independent research.

Anterior Neuromuscular Anatomy of Human Leg

Anterior Neuromuscular Anatomy of Human Leg

Posterior Neuromuscular Anatomy of Human Leg

Posterior Neuromuscular Anatomy of Human Leg

You can watch them in any order you wish, but

I have tried to assemble them in a loosely organized fashion in hopes that our readers will see how the various techniques can be used to compliment each other

and to form a catch all for reactions, energies, and defenses to any one particular attack.

Top View of Fascia and Nerves in Human Leg

Top View of Fascia and Nerves in Human Leg

Due to time constraints, I have initially included only 5 additional clips in this article. I will be updating it often over the following weeks until all the following clips are published:

  • Jab + Cross + Right Kick (unloaded leg theory)
  • Right Kick Counter to the Jab + Cross (loaded leg theory)
  • Jab + Cross + Hook + Right Kick (loaded leg theory)
  • Overhand Right + Left Kick (loaded leg theory)
  • Left Kick Retaliation to Right Kick (loaded leg theory)
  • Draw Step Set Up for the Right Kick (loaded leg theory)
  • Swing Kick Counter to the Right Kick (neutral leg theory)
  • Outside Angle Kick Counter to the Jab + Cross (neutral leg theory)
  • Jab Set Up for the Outside Angle Kick (neutral leg theory)
  • Left Inside Leg Kick Set Up for the Right Kick or Outside Angle Kick (neutral leg Theory)
  • Calve Punt(neutral leg theory)
  • Over-Riding The System, Forearm Chop, Knee, Heel Kick from the Clinch
  • Forearm Smash Attack vs Guard Pass Prevention
  • Elbow Spike Guard Opener

Loaded vs Unloaded Leg Theory (Weight Bearing vs Non-Weight Bearing – Contracted Muscle vs Relaxed Muscle)

Jab, Cross, Right Leg Kick Combination

Leg Kick By Draw

Jab, Cross, Hook, Leg Kick Combination

Kicking the Rear Leg and Inside Leg Kicks

Right Kick Counter to the Jab, Cross Combination

Swing Kick Counter to the Thai Kick

Outside Leg Kick Counter to the Jab, Cross

Jab, Outside Leg Kick Combination

Inside to Outside Leg Kick Combination

Overriding The System for MMA

MMA Karate Chop Guard Retention Counter

Yamasaki MMA Elbow Spike Guard Opener

The Catch Wrestling Shin Lock

Training with Sakuraba's Coach, the legendary Billy Robinson

Training with Sakuraba’s Coach, the legendary Billy Robinson

After first learning about the coveted but elusive Knee on Shin Lock and Elbow on Shin Lock, I was obsessed. I had to have them. I had no idea where to find them or how to go about getting on the mats with someone who knew the real skinny behind these old school Catch As Catch Can Techniques. But as luck would have it, the answer would literally fall at my feet.

Jake Shannon president and founder of the Scientific Wrestling Group, a society he has tasked with the consolidation and preservation of the many forms of Catch/Carnival/Wigan style Wrestling, recently changed his place of residence from sunny CA to the desert colony known as Utah.

2, 90 Degree Angles on 2 separate planes make for a more efficient SNAP!

2, 90 Degree Angles on 2 separate planes make for a more efficient SNAP!

W.A.R. Catch Wrestling: Lessons in Catch-As-Catch-Can with Billy RobinsonUpon arriving he needed a place to host an upcoming seminar with the legendary Catch As Catch Can Instructor Billy Robinson, a first generation student of the late Billy Riley. Jake called up his friend, our instructor Sensei Erik Paulson. Sensei Paulson suggested that he get in touch with his state representative Coach Kiser and the rest is history.

Having the once in a lifetime opportunity to train under one of few remaining authorities on Catch Wrestling, we picked as much of Billy’s brain as he and Jake could stand. The result was a bunch of footage that, to this day is some of my favorite material.

For anyone interested in learning more Catch As Catch Can moves directly from Coach Billy Robinson, I whole heartedly recommend
W.A.R. Catch Wrestling: Lessons In Catch-As-Catch-Can with Billy Robinson

The Anatomy Of The Liver Shot

Fight Doctor Mark Cacciamani talks about the anatomy of the Liver, where it is located and how to find it. Brian “Dr. Sick” Yamasaki discusses various methods of attacking the Liver in a MMA, Muay Thai, Boxing or Self Defense situation.