The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling


When people think of “fighting” or martial arts they think about striking(punches kicks, elbows etc). However, martial arts is much more than that because it also includes grappling(joint locks, takedowns, groundwork, throws, restraints). Here are benefits of practicing martial arts like Jujutsu/Jiujitsu, Bökh, Shuai Chiao, Judo, Kampfwringen, wrestling etc.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

1.) Works well against larger people: I’ve written a whole take on this subject, so I’ll keep this brief. In Jiujitsu and Judo there is something known as “open weight” competitions, in which two people of completely different sizes compete against each other. Sometimes the smaller competitor wins and sometimes the larger competitor wins, it’s fluidity vs strength. In the video below, the smaller competitor(Stefer) defeats the larger competitor(Eric)

2.) Improves your thinking skills: Grappling sports involve strategy, technique and quick thinking. Which is why grappling martial arts are a good way to keep mentally fit.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

2.) low chance of serous injuries: As a result of these sports focusing entirely on grappling, there is a decreased chance the practitioners will suffer broken noses, concussions, broken orbital bones, cauliflower ears etc.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

3.) safe enough for men and women to compete against each other: As a result of no strikes used in grappling sports, males and females can compete against each other. Naturally you’d think that it’s not fair but as you can see below, it can go either way.

4.)Good workout: Constantly practicing a grappling art will offer a very good cardio, flexibility and endurance workout. In grappling arts, you use every part of your body. Many people who practice grappling arts say that after a hour of grappling, it feels like you just completed a obstacle course.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

5.)work out body parts you’ve probably never worked out before: Hands and forearms are two body parts that most people rarely work out. These are two body parts that are used a lot in grappling arts. Grappling art practioners learn various ways of working out these body parts.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

6.)Improve other skills: Aside from improving your grappling ability, you’ll also improve your strategic thinking, dexterity and reflexes through your conditioning training and grappling experience.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

7.) safely compete against others who practice a different grappling art: You’ll also be able to compete against different types of grapplers(Judo vs wrestling etc) with very low chance of injury.

8.) Helps you learn good fitness routines and diet:

Practicing a grappling art, will allow you to learn about good ways to stay in shape and about healthy foods you should eat to stay in good shape. You don’t have to be a hulking monster to be a good grappler but you still need to be in good shape to avoid injuries and be able to endure the rigorous training and competitions.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

9.) Make new friends: Unlike regular gyms where everyone is doing their own thing and hardly communicate with each other, Grappling practioners become good friends with each other due to constant interaction with each other. Sometimes people meet their significant others there.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling

10 self train: You may also be able to self train in whatever grappling art you practice as a way of keeping your skills sharpened. Specifically with a grappling dummy.

The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling
The benefits of practicing sports that focus on grappling
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  • SirRexington
    I'm a huge fan of martial arts. Though I prefer Muay Thai and boxing, I respect and revere grappling and was taught defensive wrestling. I have practiced judo and I can tell you that judo is primarily standing grappling with the objective being to take your opponent down without having to get down with them.
    Is this still revelant?
  • monkeynutts
    Awesome take. Thanks for writing.
    Is this still revelant?

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What Girls & Guys Said

  • ImaginativeDreamer
    Very good mytake, but grappling also has some shortcomings.

    1.) Works well against larger people - Yeah, unless the larger guy is a grappler too, in that case you are in a very big disadvantage.

    2. A) Improves your thinking skills - Of course, but unlike punching and kicking, grappling can't be used against multiple opponents.

    2. B) Low chance of serous injuries - Sure, low chance of broken noses, concussions, broken orbital bones etc... But high chances of joint sprains, strains and dislocations, limb fractures, torn ligaments, neck pain & damaged throat cartilage, spinal injuries, slipped discs etc.

    3.) Safe enough for men and women to compete against each other - Still, when it comes to grappling, women are in much greater disadvantage, compared to boxing or some other punching & kicking combat sport.

    4.) Good workout - That's true.

    5.) Work out body parts you’ve probably never worked out before - Obviously.

    6.) Improve other skills - Definitely yes.

    7.) Safely compete against others who practice a different grappling art - Safely is a relative term, both Judo and Wrestling have their specific types of injuries.

    8.) Helps you learn good fitness routines and diet - No objection here (unless you include Sumo too).

    9.) Make new friends - Just like in team sports.

    10 Self train - Hmm, grappling dummy won't fight back, but ok.

    In short, I like most of the grappling styles, but lots of them are quite dangerous, unless trained under supervision of a skilled professional.

    • ADFSDF1996

      Good points. However, there have been many occasions where two people of equal grappling skills competed against each other with the smaller person coming out on top It all comes down to the individuals involved.

    • ADFSDF1996

      @ImaginativeDreamer As for number 4 it depends. Women’s flexibility can come into play. It’s brute strength and overall size vs flexibility and fluidity when it comes “male vs female” grappling contests. While it’s usually just fluidity vs brute strength aside from skill when it comes to a smaller man and a larger man grappling with each other. But we can agree that sometimes the smaller person wins and sometimes the larger person wins, it depends on many factors aside from just skill.

    • Yeah, you have a very good point.

  • looneymalooney
    it certainly helps to have any kind of sport in your life. you can learn a lot from doing it.

    A crazy woman went to the subway and waited until the train entered the station. She charged at this girl who was waiting on the platform at about 2 meters from the edge.
    She pushed her violently with both arms. The girl victim had the greatest reaction, stops at about 50 cm from the edge as the train was meters away (falling would have meant death). The crazy woman pushes again instantly, the girl stops again with one of her feet going slightly over the edge, but at the same time she lowers her body (lowering the center of gravity) and does this body rotation managing to turn around towards the interior of the platform saving herself.
    She simply pivoted on the edge of the platform.

    As soon as I watched the horrible video, I said "she's played handball for sure". It was later confirmed she was in fact playing handball at a local club.

    Unfortunately the crazy woman went to another metro station and this time pushed another young girl that was waiting for the train to go back home from work.
    This girl wasn't that lucky, did not have the strength and reflexes to oppose such an unpredictable event... she fell on the tracks right in front of the train.
    Horrible and tragic, heartbreaking to say the least.

    In some instances some physicality might just give you the small chance you need.
    Plus some awareness of your surroundings.
    • Jon_25

      That's awful! Did they catch the lady?

    • @Jon_25 police caught her that night at 1 in the morning. The attacks were carried at 19 (7PM) and the deadly one at 21 (9PM). It was a bit of an uproar as authorities did not react fast enough.

      I'd blame the people as well. After the first attack, there were plenty of people on the platform that could have held her until police or train security came. Even the train conductor should have announced through their intercom, get down and ask for help.
      It's not required for you to get physical. maybe some can't. but follow her around.

      Apparently the criminal started defending herself screaming "the girl stole my wallet" after the first girl managed to save herself.

      While screaming this, she slowly backed off as witnesses boarded the train that just stopped. "Hey, this woman tried to kill this girl, I'd better be going home and watch the news"

      The second girl is dead and nothing can be done now.

    • Jon_25

      That sucks. People are idiots sometimes, that's not excuseable. At least she didn't kill anyone else I guess..

  • Jon_25
    Good take. I have two brothers who do grappling, along with other martial arts, and ya they are really good at fighting.

    You're right about 1 for sure too, I can't remember the last time the bigger one beat the smaller one in a fight. My girlfriend is starting to learn it too, and she's pretty good at it as well.
  • johnwalker732
    Strikers could be beat or killed by a bigger or stronger opponent if the fight went to the ground. Knowing how to grapple is extremely important in fighting, as you can just choose to run away if someone tries to square up with you. It’s a disconnected attack, so grappling is more important because you have no other choice but to defend yourself.
    • ADFSDF1996

      Yes, striking martial arts alone are not as practical as they are made out to be. They can become more effective when combined with grappling arts, in fact there are newer martial arts that combine both Grappling and striking, like Sambo, Gaidojutsu and Tosho Kakuto.

    • ADFSDF1996

      However, here are other factors in martial arts.

      Taking a fight to the ground neutralizes the reach advantage. Height alone isn’t actually much of a advantage as most people erroneously believe, considering how tall stature alone isn’t synonymous with strength.

      Weight can either be an advantage or disadvantage, a heavier person can definitely throw heavier strikes but usually tire out faster. Example: Mariusz Pudzianowski (professional strongman) who originally had 350lbs of muscle had to drop down to 260 in order to improve his stamina in MMA.

      As for strength, it is not always synonymous with either height or weight. GSP who is only around 5’11” and weighs 185 is actually much stronger than a guy of his size is “supposed” to be. Of course, a person being the stronger fighter doesn’t guarantee that person will always come out on top. Megan Anderson is both a tall and strong MMA fighter who also has a good mma record got destroyed by the smaller and slightly weaker Holly Holm.

    • ADFSDF1996

      Of course, avoiding a fight is always the best option.

  • Aynsof
    Well the idea of a mot of kicking and hitting you can probably blame on too many dumb action movies
    Personally not particularly interested in martial arts but have some friends who are and I understand the grappled types often do Best in the various MMA type events
    Guess it is hard to round house kick someone when you are on the floor with that someone and they won't let go
  • TayTay21
    I practice a sport that's called "Draw My Sig and Aim for Center of Mass."

    • You can aim for my center of mass any day without you even having to draw the gun.

  • Other_Tommy_Wiseau
    Besides maybe 2 points, all of these apply to basically any sport, ever... hell, most apply to apply to basically anything
  • Anon-ymous1
    That's awesome, the clip you posted, but help me out I don't understand-- how does the scoring work? How do you beat your opponent? How is a "point" or whatever, made?
  • admles
    BJJ is my favourite pastime :)
  • Jayjoy
    good take!
  • Italiano19777
    Lol I am more a Pro Wrestling guy.
  • Peterules
    I need to learn it