Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Ground and Pound Training for MMA

About 20 years ago, if someone saw ground and pound they would probably call it brutal and unnecessary. Fast forward 20 years to the present however and it is a common thing to see, occurring in nearly every MMA fight and is even more common to see being practised in martial art schools the world over, than ever before.

To be a true martial artist, you need to be capable of fighting from all positions, including standing, on your knees, from your back and whilst on top of your opponent. Ground and pound training therefore is a must.

If you are new to ground and pound training it is wise that all you practise is strikes from the mount to begin with, concentrating on straight punches. Striking downwards at first can feel tricky to some, but after a few sessions of it, you should become more comfortable with downward punching.

When you feel you have progressed with punching from the mount you should progress to punching from the knee on the stomach position. This is great for working balance. You should also try switching sides so as to work left and ride, for you never know which side you shall end up in during the course of a fight.

I have shown above one round of ground and pound training using a heavy bag. I start by striking from the mount and the knee on the stomach positions using straight punches and elbows. I circle the bag by either stepping round or swinging one leg over the bag pivoting on the opposite knee. The scarf hold and side control positions are also worked, whilst incorporating a variety of elbow strikes and knees.

When transitioning through positions try and stay a low as possible when moving. You do not want to get into the habit of raising your body when stepping round the bag. You must make your movements as subtle as possible. Also, always think of your guard and your striking technique just as you would during stand-up striking.

Ground and pound is an excellent form of stamina training. After a couple of minutes of it your heart will be pumping fast. As you are constantly moving around the bag whilst striking you also improve your scrambling abilities and you shall notice the differences to your grappling. If you have not trained ground and pound before, start now.


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