Trainer Talk: On Your Toes or Off?

Being on your toes can be a waste of energy depending on the individual style. Footwork should always change in a fight – going from bouncing to toes to flat feet throughout a fight. Being on the toes, otherwise known as bouncing, is a boxer’s rhythm, and it has only two uses: to change rhythm confusing the opponent, or to be quick to advance or retreat. When someone says you should “always be on your toes,” it’s a misnomer that means to be on the move. Otherwise, it’s misinformation if it was meant literally, even if it is meant “to be on the balls of your feet.” Being on…

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On Luck and Referee Discretion in MMA

I will continue to study the goings-on of mma, but I will not stop complaining about its flaws until change is made. Fedor Emelianenko’s defeat to Dan Henderson was fun to watch on the surface, but it contained the underlying contradictions and drawbacks of the sport. Although this bout did not have the feature of a buffoon jumping up and down in a dry pre-fight warm-up or doing some victory dance after landing a Hail-Mary overhand, the outcome can arguably be credited to luck. Emelianenko knocked Henderson down after rushing in, fell into being swept, got punched, went limp, got punched in the back of the head a couple…

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New York Daily News Golden Gloves 2012 Fight Log

Walking out of St. Bernard’s Hall after the opening round of the 85th Annual New York Daily News Golden Gloves, I was struck with a feeling of anger. Anger at amateur boxing scoring, and anger at ignorant spectators. Friends, fans, and fake-friends can say whatever they want about what could have been done, but they don’t know what the camp knows about what was done. No one else knows what went into that fight. No one knows the discussions and the preparation. To lose on the brink of victory was an agony that a fighter can be proud of while the misery weighs on his stomach alone. Well, my…

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The Fraudulence of Trainers and Some other Topics

Boxing is filled with trainers who can throw mitts like Roger Mayweather or talk-up the basics of boxing. They may use the allure of an “advanced system” of fighting that has some fancy name or use the cheerleading tactic of praise to sell their products. Some of these guys try to reinvent the wheel with the promise that their students will have fun learning. Some posers name-drop famous names and pretentiously title their school or programs. But boxing, like any good art, is like writing–no one is going to create the secret to taking everyone to the top. There is no secret to being a good writer. As there…

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The Jab vs. The Straight Lead of JKD

Having just read The Straight Lead by Teri Tom, I was compelled to write about “The Boxing Jab.” The straight lead works as a more powerful jab than the boxing jab, and it indeed has more reach than the classic boxing jab. The problem is that the straight lead serves no additional function from a ‘regular jab’ than to make up for its lack of power in the wrist (as the straight lead’s form is to not turn the wrist) with explosive hip rotation. JKD people tend to overstate the effectiveness of hip rotation in the jab, simultaneously underestimating the effectiveness of shifting weight and the dynamics of not…

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Hero Worship and the Black Belt Bait and Switch

Any person who is getting into any area of information exchange must learn the process of the exchange of knowledge and, with an open yet skeptical mind, discern what he/she is being told. This is much easier said than practiced, because people want to blindly follow – it’s just easier. What ability does anyone have to discern if they have no basis of understanding of a given subject? Extracting truth is the responsible shopper’s responsibility. Too bad there are too few of those kinds of people. It’s why people get duped and conned, brainwashed and chopped-up. There is a type of person who tends to get brainwashed. Martial arts…

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The Compu-Box Fallacy – the Numbers Just Don’t Add Up

Fights have always been best judged the day after, when the viewer is poised to watch objectively and not get caught up in the hype. The hype, meaning everything from the crowd’s jeers, the commentators’ biases, the sound of punches landing on the gloves, to the noises that the boxers make, does not escape anyone. Even judges have to guess that a punch landed flush when a fighter’s back is turned to him. Not to mention, in order to score rounds—in one aspect—judges have to rule whether a fighter did more damage than the other fighter. Compu-Box, like Punchstat numbers or any of the popular statistic coverage on major…

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The Pinnacle of Illegitimate—MMA

Last night’s Brock Lesnar v. Randy Couture Championship match-up exhibited how unrefined mma is even at the elite level the UFC sells itself as. Can you imagine any other established sport in which a guy without vast competitive experience in a given sport can encroach his way onto the professional prize competitive field and actually perform well? It should not be so appalling to the mma purists that Lesnar was able to get a shot at fighting Couture. That is not the point. If it were an exhibition or a gym fight, an mma purist should not be mad that the trainers are allowing the guys to spar (this…

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A Boxing 10 Point Must Proposal

A Boxing 10 Point Must Proposal After the ambiguity of the Floyd Mayweather Jr. v. Oscar DeLaHoya and Jermaine Taylor v. Corey Spinks fights, even the most dedicated boxing fans must acknowledge the sport’s flaws in scoring. First, boxing needs to define what is the object of the sport? By that, I don’t mean to solicit the usual boxing cliché, “to hit and not be hit.” That slogan is a euphemism for pitter-patting amateurs who score points for merely touching opponents’ headgears, not kill or be killed professionals and their action lusting fans. The object of any combat sport should simply be to inflict more damage to an opponent…

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How To Take a Punch – The Interpretation of Taking Blows

Soft Chins, Hard Temples: The Interpretation of Taking Blows Absorbing shots to the face and body is often a matter of interpretation. I call it “interpreting force.” Some shots, of course, have the impact beyond the realm of interpreting; fighters just get layed-out. But the great majority of hits in a fight are not going to be KO worthy. And everyone gets hit. So what does one do when he gets hit one of those times hard? Does it depend on how sturdy his chin is? Can his chin get sturdier? Interpreting force is not some spiritual idea. One doesn’t have to reach an inner Chi to start taking…

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