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Old June 7, 2001, 02:15 AM   #1
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how similiar/different is high school wrestling from brazilian jui jitsu (the gracie ufc stuff)?
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Old June 7, 2001, 07:33 AM   #2
Joe Demko
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I wrestled in high school, and then later coached wrestling after I became a teacher. Wrestling is a sport. The idea is to score points and/or pin your opponent, not to harm him. In fact, moves that are a deliberate attempt to hurt your opponent or moves that are done with unnecessary roughness can cause you to forfeit your match. That said, skills learned in wrestling are of value in a scrap. Modern wrestling borrows pretty extensively from judo and Graeco-Roman style wrestling. You CAN do things as a deliberate attempt to harm your opponent or do them roughly enough to harm him. A take-down where you let go of your opponent and send him flying into the mat is called a "slam" in high school wrestling and it is illegal. A take-down that sends your opponent flying into the pavement because you let go of him in a fight is called "smart." All by itself, high school style wrestling probably isn't a great system of self-defense, but the aggressive attitude it fosters, together with the useful skills it imparts, can be combined with a bit of extra-curricular study of punching and kicking to make you well able to defend yourself.
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Old June 8, 2001, 07:04 AM   #3
Matt Wallis
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This is a little bit off the original subject, but there are pretty developed systems of grappling in some European medieval instruction texts. I have seen a seminar presentation on one of the systems (Fiore De Liberi) as well as dabbled in their practice myself.

When I showed some of the moves (in one of the texts) to an advanced High School wrestler he recognized some of them as modern moves. However, from what I've seen these early forms of western grappling much more resemble some Asian joint locking arts (eg. Aikido, Hapkido, etc.) than they do modern High School/Collegiate wrestling. This is mostly due to the lack of any extensive "on the ground" work. Most of the moves are various joint locks and throws that don't follow the oppenent to the ground.

I've never studied (ancient) Greco-Roman wrestling or Pankration so I don't know how it stacks up against them. But I would guess modern wrestling stems more from those forms than it does from the medieval forms I'm familiar with.

Matt Wallis

PS. Just a disclaimer: Though I know some about this stuff. I'll admit right up front... I suck at wrestling/grappling! Heh, heh. So I'm not trying to pass myself off as any kind of expert here. But I do recognize it's effectiveness.
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Old June 9, 2001, 05:34 PM   #4
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BJJ vs Wrestling

Grappling is grappling.... they just come in different flavors. As already mentioned, high school wrestling is a sport. You go for a pin. Also because it is sport oriented, the wrestler usually will have bad habits (ie. not protecting the neck or limbs, giving up the back). BJJ, though it also has a sport side to it, is meant for combat. In BJJ, fighters go for submission. The BJJ fighter has more finishing tools that a wrestler is not taught.

I'd suggest studying both because then you'd learn the effective throws and takedowns of the wrestler, with the submissions and tactics of the BJJ fighter. After learning both, you should learn how to punch and defend the punch cuz all the grappling knowledge in the world is useless if you get knocked out.
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Old June 11, 2001, 12:48 AM   #5
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First, let me just say that I love BJJ (Jiu-Jitsu de Brasil) and practice it to this day. My instructor lineage is on the Carlson Gracie side.

However, BJJ is mostly certainly not meant for "combat" as I understand that word. It is a sport much as free-style or the so-called Greco-Roman (actually French) wrestling is. At most, Vale Tudo style of BJJ is contest (meaning one-on-one in a controlled cage-type environment) fighting.

It is in some ways more useful for self-defense in that it allows many forms of joint-breaking techniques or chokes that are clearly prohibited in sporting forms of wrestling. It also teaches grappling using handles (lapels, sleeves, pants, etc.).

Aside from specific techniques, the main difference between wrestling and BJJ is shaped by the rules and time limits. Wrestling is often highly time-limited. Hence, speed, power and explosiveness as well as superior physical conditioning are highly valued.

While these attributes are also useful in BJJ, its players tend to be a bit more "relaxed" or "patient" as they sometimes take quite a bit of time to set up their submissions or techniques.

As an aside, no one alive today really understands what Greek Pankration was all about despite the claims of some modern day "Pankration" instructors. Real ancient Greek Panktration died out a long, long time ago and documentary evidences regarding its specific techniques or even rules are extremely fragmentary.

For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Sun Tzu
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