Master Forrest G. Blair

Yesterday’s Champions vs. Today’s

I am always interested as I watch the strikers in the various and sundry full contact martial arts, with their alleged “all-out” approach to fighting methods. They appear to be lacking in the most basic understanding of the sweet science of leverage when using their fist in punching.

One cannot fault the conditioning of these men. The heart and macho animal seems to be in the house also. I, however, question the understanding and professionalism of the striking trainers, which becomes blatant and apparent when observing their tactics and approaches through their trained fighters.

First, a lack of understanding of target heart rates in proportion to loss of motor skills has not been researched nor seems to be understood in the vast majority of these mixed martial arts. Macho ignorance is no excuse. There is plenty of scientific research available.

Second, as these fighters move further into the contest one can watch their bodies disconnect from the very components that create striking power. They don’t know that the harder they try the more depleated their performance becomes.

The first fundamental element of a knockout strike is the setting up and timing of a collision that occurs on the down stroke! The old boxing expression, “sitting on your punches,” does not mean bending your knees!

Now, as for the testosterone-male-driven appreciation for an all out guts and beer back yard fight that has some kind of blue collar hillbilly appeal – to each his own! I write these words not as a critic but as an experienced observer with over forty years of hands on education! To compare these modern day warriors to martial warriors of the past is ludicrous! How can individuals that ignore two of the most fundamental aspects of leveraged hitting consider themselves champions of great martial tradition that was battlefield proven with life and death as the stakes and not the infamous “tap out?”

If you can’t imagine what true battle conditions might have been like I suggest that you rent the old Mel Gibson movie Braveheart. Those choreographed scenes at least mimic battlefield conditions. These men fought against ill intentioned opponents, for their lives, on difficult terrain, for long periods of time, with NO timed rounds or water breaks with the ref stopping the match.

The same things happened in the oriental primitive battlefields. Hell, jujitsu was the adjunct hand-to-hand art for the samurai and was proven effective against opponents armed with swords and all manner of weapons! Can Brazilian hybrids make that same claim?

MMA is a fine martial rooted sport. The athletes are trained well for a rough and tumble game. But lets not get carried away with a romantic form of entertainment. Somehow I would like to be able to time travel a mixture of proud octagon champions and drop them into the middle of one of those ancient battles of real combat. The fighters back then were, in that day and in their time, modern day world-class warriors. I wonder how much toilet paper it would take to clean up after my experiment.

In later blogs I will expand on hitting and striking power based on physiology and body mechanics. For now, I will smile quietly to myself. As always, I will respectfully answer any and all questions, if you wish…

2 Responses to “Yesterday’s Champions vs. Today’s”

  1. Joe Barron says:

    Master Blair,

    What are your thoughts on Krav Maga? I’m thinking about taking a course when we get back from Deployment.


  2. Kyle says:

    Many of these fighters need to take a closer look at the basic movements when they’re on their feet and realize the “points of power” when grappling on the ground. If I were to ever get back in fighting shape and participate in this kind of fighting I can hear my theme music as I walk down the isle… “Why Can’t We Be Friends”

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