Martial Sport or Self Defense?


Everyone know's that MMA Fighters are on another Planet when it comes to their conditioning, fighting spirit, skill and determination. Many are GREAT Martial Artists that happened to be great fighters too. 


I have many MMA fighter friends I admire so much and get inspired by their attitude and effort in their training. It’s very motivating to me. They are great examples of determination and spirit.


They are an ELITE group of people. It takes a special kind of person to be a GREAT fighter. It's a LIFE STYLE. USUALLY a Great fighter is ALSO a great Martial Artist / BUDO-KA


I do believe that the FORMAT of MMA is the closest thing you can get to a REAL combat and fighting in a rule bound environment. BUT it's not the means to ALL ENDS. NOT even by Long shot. MMA is NOT SELF DEFENSE. MMA is a COMBAT sport. It's also a YOUNG men's/women's sport. NOT IDEAL for anyone 40 plus to Start up. Although it is possible.


As for how important Realistic Self defense skills are:

JUST Ask a rape victim who resorted to eye gouges to save their lives if they had a choice when scrambling for their life before it happened. DID their POINT KARATE skills save them? 


Ask the person who was attacked by multiple attackers as they were mugged. DID their GROUND games save them as they grappled on their back with one attacker while the other attacker was kicking their head in with their boot?  Pulling guard is not so fun anymore is it?


Ask anyone who has to defend themselves in a HOME invasion or anyone who survived a Kidnapping. 


I PERSONALLY have been in a few street fights. TWO of them trying to help my friend's get home safe.

One fight was a TWO against ONE.. Guess who was ALONE in that fight?  Luckily I am still here to Write this post many years later.


Let's also REMEMBER, ALL IT TAKES to stop an MMA fight is a nice GROIN SHOT or a sharp EYE GOUGE a thrusting THROAT STRIKE or a hard BITE. Even Striking the Back of the head is considered dangerous and as such, Illegal in the Cage. 


In the street, a HANDFUL of KEYS to the face works too.  ALL of WHICH are LEGITIMATE SELF-DEFENSE techniques taught in older forms of Martial Arts designed for the Normal person in the STREET who is NOT big and strong.


MMA is NOT a MARTIAL ART, don’t be FOOLED.  POINT KARATE is NOT a martial art either! KICKBOXING (Full contact Karate), MUAY THAI, BJJ, JUDO, SAMBO, WRESTLING are ALL SPORT Versions of something ALTERED and restricted from their ORIGINAL form and intent. They are now MARTIAL SPORTS. However they are advertised as “Martial Arts”. 


For the Record, Martial arts are hundreds of years old, whereas Sport Martial Arts are very modern and new. The key word being SPORT.  


Martial "ART"s have NO LIMITS or STYLES. NO LABELS, only PRINCIPLES.  The minute you give an art LIMITATIONS with RULES and a COMPETITION ARENA it becomes a sport. 


That’s fine, and they are EACH AWESOME. But let’s not mistake them for self defense. Let’s just call it what it really is. This does not mean that sport is not GOOD.. sports are awesome for what they are, hands down.


However, REAL martial arts allow even the Weakest person to defeat the biggest attackers when equipped with the right knowledge and technique. Royce Gracie anyone? 


There is NO cage, ring or mat in the street and NO referee.


Anyone SELLING themselves as SELF DEFENSE/Martial Arts instructor, MUST at some point and at some level, teach REALITY based scenarios to their students that allows the student to become empowered by the knowledge and the techniques they are learning.


Moral of the story, if you want to learn a Martial Art, you want to make sure it TRUELY is a Self defense based practice, if self defense is your main goal and purpose for starting your training.


Make sure the art you are seeking to help your self defense skills is not a STYLISTIC practice of SPORT Techniques that “elude” to something effective when in reality it’s not. Make sure the art your pursue meets the purpose you are seeking and is truly based on EFFECTIVE and REALISTIC life saving methods and that the Focus is ALL INCLUSIVE. 


What I mean by this is that “the art should cover an endless plethora of scenarios one can defend themselves with”

I.E. ALL types of Striking, Self defense grappling (not sport Grappling), evasions, throws, chokes, submissions, elbows, clinching,  ect. ect. 


However, if you seek sport competition and a martial sport, don’t worry, there are plenty of Dojos/gyms that offer that too. 


Another point to ponder is that when martial arts were created and developed, historically they were based on REAL LIFE or DEATH scenarios, not for sport.


Martial Arts in their most primitive nature were meant to cover all aspects of self defense because they were simply for SURVIVAL, not for points. They were also meant for any person of any size or strength to learn. You did not need to be OR become athletic to be skillful.



Another misconception is that you need to jump from one art to the next to cover all areas of your training. However, to do that in modern times, simply means learning multiples “sports” not arts. It’s the sports that have become the label to define an art nowadays. This is obviously NOT the original intention of past masters.


One such Master, Gichin Funakoshi would be turning in his grave if he knew the state of Karate in today’s modern sport culture.  I ALWAYS LAUGH when i get asked, is ALL you teach here JUST KARATE?" Sigh..........


I simply reply, YES it is EVERYTHING and ALL I teach. 


KA-RA-TE Literally means ANYTHING with EMPTY HANDS to defend yourself.





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