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In The Arena Blog

Setting Up Takedowns for MMA

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Setting up takedowns in MMA is a lot different than in Wrestling, since you can use punches to distract your opponent. In this tip Coach Vince Salvador shows how he uses punches to get his opponent’s hands up, leaving his legs open for the takedown.


Coach Vince Salvador:
A lot of times in MMA, to set up a takedown, you can use other things besides just wrestling, or having someone run at you to take them down. So today, we’re going to work on using our hands to set up our take down. So in MMA, everything starts on the feet. So to get the guy on the ground, I’ve got to use my boxing to set up my take down. Because if I just come straight forward and try to take him down, he’s going to move out of the way or hit me with his hands. And so, I need to be able to get his hands occupied, so I can change levels, get below where I need to get, so I can take him down and put him on his back. So with punching, if I’m punching up top, that will bring his arms up.

So if I’m punching low, I’m trying to bring his hands low to punch up top. So they both work reverse, and you know, back and forth, and they work both ways. So for this, I’m using hands up top to set up my takedowns, so I’ll throw punches up top to get his hands up. I can change levels to make it seem like I’m going to go down, but I’m using level changes just like I would use in boxing for body shots at the same to hide my intentions. So I can go high with a jab, low, high, use that to set up the takedown. So there’s no in between. There’s no time where I’m going jab, stop, shot, he throws a knee or something, catches me on the way in. I’ve got to get him occupied, so I’m using my hands. I’ll start punching up top, that will get them busy, get them thinking about what’s going on the top. And if not, then you probably get him, probably hit him with your hands. So when he’s blocking, he’s defending, he’s defending, he’s losing. That’s the tip of the week.

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