Little Observations in the Big World of MMA: Anderson Silva, Youth MMA, Televised Fights, and Training Injuries
Take a look back at the world of mixed martial arts five years ago. Middleweight kingpin Anderson Silva was just beginning to create his legend within the UFC, televised MMA was a privilege not a right, and youth MMA was only a portion of what it is today.
With the combative sports world continuously growing each day, read along as US Combat Sports Reporter Carl Lange recounts the firsthand observations he has witnessed within the fight scene on a handful of topics.
MMA on TV
While eating a leftover batch of chicken strips my wife made (the best cook in the world, but I could be biased) I was stuck in the world of too tired to sleep. I know we all have been there but I seem to visit that little world two or three times a week.
So, I plop down on my favorite side of the couch and grab the little black and gray lifeline to the portal of late night TV. This is when the reality that MMA was getting more popular than ever hit me.
Five years ago, my visit to zombie TV was clouded with Shamwow, NOW music, and Billy Mayes pitching everything from Oxi Clean to some crazy looking closet organizer. But now, I was surprised to find three different channels showing past Pride and UFC fights. And to make it better, it lasted two full hours.
So after watching the classic Silva vs. Liddell slugfest along with other great fights, I crawled back into bed and actually hadn't purchased anything that my wife would question in later days.
A couple gyms here close to home have started offering youth MMA classes. I have had a few people ask my opinion on this, so I thought I would share my feelings. First off, mixed martial arts is not a blood bath sport, it is now a practiced discipline of martial arts. It is something that takes dedication, focus, and self-discipline.
It is no different than the Karate craze after Ralph Machio hit the big screen as Karate Kid. So in this case, if you want your kids to get involved, it is great. But please understand, this does mean your kid will get the occasional black eye, busted lip, and bruised leg.
Anderson Silva is MMA's Muhammad Ali
After his latest win over Chael Sonnen, it is clear that we have witnessed the MMA equivalent of the Muhammad Ali. His dominance is something absolutely amazing.
"The Spider" has defeated a who's who of the MMA world and with the exception of 4 rounds, did all of it with outstanding dominance. You can hate all you want, complain about this or that, but the fact is he is the Greatest MMA Fighter of all time. Period.
More Fights a Year
In the midst of his crazy pre fight rants and raves, Chael Sonnen had a very solid point concerning the amount of times we see fighters in the Octagon. And, while most of his talking was similar to the political babble we now hear between presidential candidates, he has a very good point.
There are a large number of fighters who will not fight more than three times a year. You figure in the fact overtraining is a big problem as well and the fighter will be injured at least once, and we only see them fight two times a year.
What could help with this could be more education on smart training. The idea that fighters train seven days a week, four hours a day, for three months leading up to a fight is just not smart. Fighters have started getting away from this, but the requirements to fight more would force them to train less and more intelligently.
Remember, NFL teams used to pass out salt tablets to their players in the 70's and 80's because they wanted them to just keep going. Now they take two days off after a game, then practice without contact for four days, and play another game. Yet the game hasn't suffered. Maybe MMA could take a page or two from that book.
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