Here’s a really interesting MMA drill with a TON of applications for self defense…
It’s features Greg Nelson who has coached 3 different fighters to UFC championships (Dave Menne, Sean Sherk and Brock Lesnar) and has also done a ton of work with law enforcement and the military.
Anyway, here’s video I think you should watch.
The ground and pound section is mostly in the first minute and half of this video…
Wasn’t that cool?
In 1 minute and 25 seconds you saw Greg land punches, knees, snap elbows, forearm smashes, shin kicks and hammerfists from mount, knee on belly, sidemount and kuzure kesa gatame.
It’s no wonder why his fighters were such nightmares to deal with once they were in top position.
Training this relentless barrage of strikes is great for
- Conditioning; it’s amazing training for your heart, lungs and muscles
- Winning through attrition; being at the receiving end of such barrage is even more tiring for your opponent, allowing you to wear him down and exhaust him
- Knocking your opponent out or incapacitating him
- Getting your opponent to give up submission opportunities (e.g. turning to his belly, allowing you to take his back and choke him out)
The ground happens, and you HAVE to know some jiu-jitsu if you’re going to be a complete fighter.
But jiu-jitsu isn’t just flowing with the go, spinning into inverted guard, and sweeping your opponent with a cross-side reverse lapeloplata.
Jiu-jitsu definitely includes a striking aspect. Royce Gracie in the early UFC’s didn’t just hug people to death: he got top position and hit them in the head until they turned and exposed the back.
A drill like the one Greg Nelson shows is a great way to develop the ability to drop punishment on your opponent from anywhere.
Generating Power for Your Punches in the Mount
One of the difficulties of that standing strikers face when making the transition to ground and pound is that power generation is a little different.
If you’re on the ground then you can’t rely on pushing off the ground through your foot and hip rotation the way you can if you’re delivering a left hook or right cross.
Your hips are often locked in place so you’ve you’ve got to use a LOT more shoulder rotation and contraction of the front of your body.
You’ll have gravity on your side though, so you can definitely still drop some bombs.
This short 2:40 video breaks down how to compensate for the lack of hip rotation and still have impressive punching power from the mount…
The Motion Master Dummy for Ground and Pound
The bag that Greg uses in the first half of the video is Erik Paulson’s Motion Master.
Now in general I’m not a huge fan of grappling dummies.
Most of the time people fork out a ton of cash for a dummy, use it enthusiastically for a week or two, and then relegate it to a dark corner of the garage.
But ground and pound is such an important skill that you have to train it, and your training partners are going to get sick of getting punched in head pretty fast. So if you’re interested in MMA or run a self defense school then I would make an exception for the Motion Master.
Here’s are another couple of videos of this dummy taking a beating by Erik Paulson’s and his CSW students…
And here’s another one….
You can probably make do with a regular bag, but the protrusions on the Motion Master simulating shoulders and legs really help you ‘fit’ into your opponent.
Anyway, if you’re interested then here’s a link to the Motion Master on Revgear.
Regardless of whether it’s the Motion Master or not, if you’re interested in self defense then you occasionally need to be hitting something, anything, on the ground.
Plus it’s fun and great conditioning!
Happy ground and pounding,