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Old 10-19-2012, 10:45 AM   #1
McGrain
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Default Knees and power

I was thinking about how, in boxing (and indeed MMA) a fighter can have real speed and good technique but still show very little in the way of power as far as punches go. That is, some fighters, like Shavers, don't throw with fantastic technique or with real speed and they down opponents like they're armed with shotguns. Other guys, say Kid Gavilan, throw with real speed and superb technique but are never more than stinging punchers. Even Ivan Calderon. Check him out against Nelson Dieppa or someone, he's throwing hard punches very fast with good power technique (torque, punching through) but not even making a dent.

What I want to ask is, is this in any way reflected in MMA? You can throw knees in this sport - is a knee a knee is a knee, or do some knees carry "natural" power, regardless of technique?

How about kicks? I'm less interested in kicks but if anyone has anything interesting please add it.
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Old 10-19-2012, 11:13 AM   #2
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I think it's similar. Some guys are just harder strikers than others.

Mechanically it can look like they're doing the same thing. But the end result isn't the same. Could be down to a bunch of factors. The area and range of the strike, the target that's being hit, how committed the person throwing the strike is.

A guy can have a ferocious right hand against opponents his height or shorter, but he seems feather fisted fighting someone who is a few inches taller because the taller guys chin isn't inside the power arc of the guys swing.

Crocop and Andy Hug were pretty good kickers. Anderson Silva can whack pretty good with his knees. If I remember right, he won his title off a Muai Thai clench knee combo. Guy he knocked out got a rematch and then ktfo with the same move again.
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Old 10-19-2012, 11:30 AM   #3
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Default Re: Knees and power

I canīt remember of anyone who is a good kicker or knee thrower and donīt whack people with them tbh......
Hermes Franįa vs Sean Sherk comes in mind though, when Hermes really hit Sean with big knees and couldnīt stop him, then later we have seen Sherk being stopped by BJ with a knee and before by GSP.....anyway I would say Sherk has a very good chin though...
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Old 10-19-2012, 11:35 AM   #4
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haha talking about a good chin in relation to knees seems mad.
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Old 10-19-2012, 07:12 PM   #5
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Default Re: Knees and power

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Originally Posted by Vic-JofreBRASIL View Post
.....anyway I would say Sherk has a very good chin though...
Aint watched that fight for a while, but didnt Sean eat a few hard punches against the cage before the bell rang and he was still concious? He does indeed have a great chin
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Old 10-19-2012, 07:33 PM   #6
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Aint watched that fight for a while, but didnt Sean eat a few hard punches against the cage before the bell rang and he was still concious? He does indeed have a great chin
The Penn fight? He ate a flying knee and a half dozen punches to the face while he was slumped against the cage. He had some trouble getting up after the bell rang and BJ helped the ref call it off.
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Old 10-19-2012, 07:36 PM   #7
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The Penn fight? He ate a flying knee and a half dozen punches to the face while he was slumped against the cage. He had some trouble getting up after the bell rang and BJ helped the ref call it off.
That was ****ing awesome too.

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Old 10-19-2012, 10:45 PM   #8
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The Penn fight? He ate a flying knee and a half dozen punches to the face while he was slumped against the cage. He had some trouble getting up after the bell rang and BJ helped the ref call it off.
He was out no doubt, but 99% of guys would need medical attention and a stretcher. Sherk a G
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Old 10-20-2012, 01:53 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain View Post
I was thinking about how, in boxing (and indeed MMA) a fighter can have real speed and good technique but still show very little in the way of power as far as punches go. That is, some fighters, like Shavers, don't throw with fantastic technique or with real speed and they down opponents like they're armed with shotguns. Other guys, say Kid Gavilan, throw with real speed and superb technique but are never more than stinging punchers. Even Ivan Calderon. Check him out against Nelson Dieppa or someone, he's throwing hard punches very fast with good power technique (torque, punching through) but not even making a dent.

What I want to ask is, is this in any way reflected in MMA? You can throw knees in this sport - is a knee a knee is a knee, or do some knees carry "natural" power, regardless of technique?

How about kicks? I'm less interested in kicks but if anyone has anything interesting please add it.
Linear knees strikes are easier to throw and most fighters seem to focus on these. IMO though fighters who really work on twisting the grapple and using the round knee to the floating ribs or even better around the ear seem to get a lot of power and brutal KO's.

A Thai trainer gave me his thoughts on it a long time ago and it made sense. His thoughts were the combination of leverage from one side and putting the roll of the hip into the knee striking the other gave it a lot more force.
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Old 10-20-2012, 06:59 AM   #10
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He was out no doubt, but 99% of guys would need medical attention and a stretcher. Sherk a G
Yeah, I'm surprised he got up at all after that knee.
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Old 10-22-2012, 10:25 AM   #11
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Default Re: Knees and power

Kind of cool to see one of the big dogs in the Classic Forum posting a question in the MMA forum.
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Old 10-23-2012, 09:25 AM   #12
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Default Re: Knees and power

Knees are brutal and its hard not to make them powerful. Punching requires better technqiue than kneeing to be powerful.

95% of knees in MMA appear powerful. Bisping is the only guy who strikes me as lacking power. He always looks like he needs to land a few to hurt.
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Old 10-23-2012, 01:36 PM   #13
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Default Re: Knees and power

Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain View Post
I was thinking about how, in boxing (and indeed MMA) a fighter can have real speed and good technique but still show very little in the way of power as far as punches go. That is, some fighters, like Shavers, don't throw with fantastic technique or with real speed and they down opponents like they're armed with shotguns. Other guys, say Kid Gavilan, throw with real speed and superb technique but are never more than stinging punchers. Even Ivan Calderon. Check him out against Nelson Dieppa or someone, he's throwing hard punches very fast with good power technique (torque, punching through) but not even making a dent.

What I want to ask is, is this in any way reflected in MMA? You can throw knees in this sport - is a knee a knee is a knee, or do some knees carry "natural" power, regardless of technique?

How about kicks? I'm less interested in kicks but if anyone has anything interesting please add it.
IMO, no a KNEE is not a KNEE. Here is the scoop, POWER is created from many aspects, two of them being LEVERAGE and TORQUE. Same for PUNCHEs. Ivan Calderon for instance is fast handed, HOWEVER, his HANDSPEED is ATHLETIC and his technique favours SPEED over using LEVERAGE to create TORQUE. WHY ? Because to use LEVERAGE and alot of TORQUE one must SACRIFICE a SPLIT second "BEFORE" the punch is DELIVERED. Thus the hand speed once the punch begins could be just as FAST with leverage and powerful torque, However, it wont ARRIVE on TARGET as FAST because of the SPLIT SECOND delay setting up the POWER. Sugar Ray was like this, he could in fairness hit pretty dam hard when he set, however, he only did that in RARE situations choosing instead to use his AWESOME hand speed from his natural ability not overly focused on LEVERAGING his punches with power like say Tommy Hearns did. So same thing applies to knees in this department.

As well,, just like PUNCHEs a KNEE and where and when it connects is CRITICAL. Some knee's that look brutal and hit cleanly dont knock a dude down, YET other knees that dont look so BRUTAL will knock a dude flat. Many reasons, primary reason being, just like a PUNCH if it CONNECTs too EARLY or too LATE in the extension the POWER delivered can VARY significantly. If too early, the head absorbs the initial IMPACT and then is PUSHED via the EXCELLERATION of the FORCE within the punch while EXTENDING. This can make a fighter's head SNAP back in such a way it appears he has a taken a HUGE BLOW, however, the IMPACT of the BLOW would RATTLE the brain FAR FAR less. Same with a FULL EXTENDED PUNCH or KNEE, if the IMPACT takes place too late with full extention the FORCE of IMPACT will be SIGNIFICANTLY less. In a KNEE this can come into PLAY even more especially with fighters that are not really skilled using a knee. The reason it comes into play with a KNEE even more is because of GRAVITY and more so FLEXIBILITY. Most fighters to some degree when in a FULL EXTENTION with a knee will have VERY LITTLE power in even brutal looking knees as the final 6 plus inches of EXTENTION the knee will be slowly down dramatically when compared to the final 6 inches of a PUNCH witch will not slow down so dramatically until the last inch or so. This happens as ones FLEXIBILITY when raising a knee will be PULLING back on its force NATURALLY within the last several inches of its extention. This also applies to kicks.

Thus the CRITICAL point about KNEEs and or PUNCHEs is the IMPACT that is created at point of contact. If that point of CONTACT the excelleration of speed and FORCE combine at the PERFECT moments a relatively non brutal looking STRIKE can stagger a fighter and vice versa. Not to mention the point of impact upon the fighter such as TEMPLE, chin, forehead and the angle the strike connects can deliver all the force directly into JOLTING the brain as well it can at a slightly different angle deliver alot of the force not directly into the brain even if the fighters HEAD appears to brutally be moved. Picture throwing a rock at someones head and it hitting the top of their head and flying over their head continuing 30 feet past. Then picture that same rock hitting some dude in the forehead and it stops boucing back in the opposite direction it came. The rock that flys past has NOT DELIVERED its full force to the poor sucker that just got hit in the head with a ROCK. It could leave a wicked gash and mouse on ones head as the IMPACT at site of contact effected the AREA with force, however, the IMPACT VIBRATIONs would not be DIRECTED so significantly into the BRAIN thereby creating that worst of all impacts those being DISCOMBOBULATION, this FREAKs fighters out in more ways then just physically. First, when tagged with a brain jolt the first sense that comes back to the fighter is CONFUSION, as in "WHAT THE HELL JUST HAPPENED?" ,,,, WHY? The mind blacked out and lost equilibrium for a spliit second at the point of impact.

Look at the Silva vs Belfort fight, that kicked destroyed Vitor because Silva COMMITTED to it very very CASUALLY and hammered Vitor with it at basically a PERFECT ANGLE of EXTENSION and FORCE and Vitor crumbled. That same kick if lets say Vitor adjusted to it and moved backwards/sideways away from it even 6 inches could have resulted in a kick to the chin that was basically harmless relatively speaking.

A good knee delivered on target with a good impact can take even the most iron chinned opponents down and right out.
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Old 10-23-2012, 03:52 PM   #14
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Default Re: Knees and power

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Originally Posted by PIRA View Post
Linear knees strikes are easier to throw and most fighters seem to focus on these. IMO though fighters who really work on twisting the grapple and using the round knee to the floating ribs or even better around the ear seem to get a lot of power and brutal KO's.

A Thai trainer gave me his thoughts on it a long time ago and it made sense. His thoughts were the combination of leverage from one side and putting the roll of the hip into the knee striking the other gave it a lot more force.
Good post PIRA!

I agree and this highlights a pet hate of mine when watching MMA guys use knees. They usually go for the “plum” and then just start alternately throwing straight knees up, pretty basic stuff and easy to defend against if you have any basic understanding of MT clinching and knee work. I’m not sure how more commonly used MT clinch work would apply in a MMA environment, but I can’t help thinking it would only benefit both the attacker and defender.

My main pet hate in this is when they throw their knees they seem to just “lift” the knees up to the target, basically losing most of their power. As PIRA touched on in his post rotating the hip into the knee and extending it is where the natural fluid power is but this very often doesn’t seem to get taught in most western gyms. To throw a good knee fluidly and with venomous power you have to throw the knee up and then push though the target by extending your knee past your “usually limit” of motion, this is where the power is, loose flexible hips are very very important. This is almost the same technique in a successful push kick as well, another technique which seems to be lazily deployed in MMA, guys push to the target not through it, they don’t turn the hip to push through it.

The “plum” which is so beloved by our MMA brothers is pretty easy to defend against just by calmly straightening you back, grapping your opposition round the waist and pulling him close, the “plum” isn’t the MT classic that it seems to have become outside of Thailand. In fact it’s pretty rarely deployed in the way most westerners use it in Thailand. When clinching you need to create space to knee, which is done by creating openings by getting your opponent off balance and simultaneously manoeuvring him into an open or vulnerable position, this can also lead to game changing throws. Clinching to throw knees is a very technical affair more about timing than brute force. Check out ATG Saenchai and top throw back fighter Pornsaneh doing some clinch work in these two clips, notice the natural knee extension and more common hand positioning used. (Old man and ATG Orono in the ring to!)


[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMaHIywokxQ[/ame]
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[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yUPnyEZSLCc[/ame]
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[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SqW0t77NbCM[/ame]
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Old 10-23-2012, 03:57 PM   #15
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Default Re: Knees and power

In answer to the thread opener interms of power to a certain degree yes knees carry a lot of natural power even “light” knees. It’s not uncommon to receive very deep bruising around the ribs form just walking onto a protruding straight knee not thrown with any real venom, just held up to break a technique, this can put you out of training for weeks, hence the very light nature of Thai technical sparring. However, as I explained above basic knees aren’t really being used to their full effect in most MMA bouts I’ve watched as they don’t turn and then extend their hip to push through the target as a typical MT fighter would do. This is repeated with almost every technique including kicks. MT dynamics are a twin of their western brother boxing, power is all in the hips.

A lot of guys underestimate how crucial flexibility is to the basic function of performing simple Muay Thai techniques. Guy’s really need to work on flexibility in the hip area, just to pull off basic knee and kicking techniques with any sense of good form, control and most importantly maximum power. If your flexibility is good, your body doesn’t impede the fluidity good technique brings which leads to leads to that holy grail of power. This is the one slight difference between the development of good boxing technique and good MT technique….. the role flexibility plays. I realise good flexibility is necessary to throw punches with a full range of motion, but developing fluidity through good technique bought about good flexibility is a basic requirement to perform effective MT at even a basic level. Good hip flexibility is crucial to the power, strength and speed of your knees and kicks.

In the west when a lot of guys start learning MT particularly MMA guys they are aware of its rep as a powerful style and hence when kicking the pads they really go for it and try whack the **** out of the pads and hence try too hard, tense up and never really unleash their full power. Without an experienced eye this is how bad habits are formed and this happens frequently. Guys really you need to relax into their kicks, the real power is in natural rotation and full commitment to possible over swing. Many guys in those initial learning stages also try to make contact with the pads via the foot and the bottom part of the shin, this is a mistake. Really they shouldn’t even be thinking about the foot. To develop good pure form you need to focus on throwing only the hip with relaxed speed, if you do this the shin and foot automatically follow the hip round, this is good Muay Thai technique. As with boxing, guys know to always hit through the target, and the same applies in Muay Thai. Commit those hips, swing them hard and fast past the pad and your shin becomes a baseball bat, a one limb wrecking machine. This is the difference between all the other kicking Martial arts and Muay Thai, the natural “over” rotation of the hip, the secret is commit, commit, commit and very often in MMA I don’t see that. There may be a reason for this, maybe a potential take down if they miss, but I can’t help thinking if you’re gonna throw you’re better of throwing a nuke than a water bomb…..
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