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MMA Fighters

Whoever coined the term mixed martial arts (we know—it was actually Rick Blume) should have called it MMMA (modern mixed martial arts) because just about every martial art historically evolved from combining previously existing styles or techniques. Choy lay fut, for example, is a mixed martial art based on the styles of three martial men. Similarly, Shaolin, taekwondo, karate and even Brazilian jiu-jitsu are combinations of other arts. Thus, MMA puts a modern spin on a very old idea.

Today’s MMA fighters are trained in Asian martial arts and Western styles of fighting and have the luxury and honor of learning from 1,000 years of martial arts tradition, combative trial and error, and the examples of millions of warriors who gave their lives for their countries and arts. As a result, MMA fighters have become superb martial arts technicians and are privileged to exercise their age-old skills under rules so modern that they can safely beat the crap out of each other without killing anyone or truly having to fight for their lives.

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  1. Learn 3 Grappling Techniques From UFC Star Chael Sonnen

    Learn 3 Grappling Techniques From UFC Star Chael Sonnen

    Chael Sonnen isn’t your typical politician. For one, he actually answered our questions. But more important, the All-American wrestler from Oregon taught us some of the best tricks from his playbook.

    Despite his reputation as one of the UFC’s loudest stars, he doesn’t have a bad word to say about
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  2. What Do MMA, Pro Wrestling and Traditional Martial Arts Have in Common?

    What Do MMA, Pro Wrestling and Traditional Martial Arts Have in Common?

    I had never seen anyone quite like Ken Shamrock, who at 6 feet 1 inch tall and 217 pounds handily dropped opponent after opponent in World Wrestling Entertainment (then World Wrestling Federation) matches. An Ultimate Fighting Championship veteran, Ken Shamrock brought a unique style to the pro-wrestling milieu in 1997,
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  3. Boxing vs. MMA: Randy Couture Proves Mixed Martial Arts a Legit Sport Against James Toney

    Boxing vs. MMA: Randy Couture Proves Mixed Martial Arts a Legit Sport Against James Toney

    They say no one has invented a time machine, but while watching the UFC 118 in Boston, I was hard-pressed to believe it. I say this because when that old question, “Can a boxer beat a mixed martial artist?” reared its ugly head again courtesy of the co-main event, it
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  4. B.J. Penn’s First Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Lesson

    B.J. Penn’s First Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Lesson

    B.J. Penn is a friend of mine. I gave him his very first Brazilian jiu-jitsu lessons, and for a year we trained together two to three days a week. Whenever B.J. Penn tells the story of how he got started in the martial arts, he’s always kind enough to mention
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  5. Gokor Chivichyan: Uchi Mata Technique in Grappling

    Gokor Chivichyan: Uchi Mata Technique in Grappling

    If you don’t know Gokor, you’re not really into grappling. Disagree all you want, but you can’t dispute the fact that Gokor Chivichyan is the go-to guy for submissions, especially leg locks. He was inducted into the Black Belt Hall of Fame in 1997 as Judo Instructor of the Year,
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  6. Tattoos and Training for MMA Film: Undisputed III

    Tattoos and Training for MMA Film: Undisputed III

    Scott Adkins, star of Undisputed III: Redemption, was featured in the February 2011 Black Belt issue’s cover story about what constitutes the 21st-century martial artist. He’s a student of judo, wushu, Krav Maga and gymnastics, and used all of them in his role as Russian inmate Boyka for the two
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  7. Evolving an MMA Fighter for Undisputed III

    Evolving an MMA Fighter for Undisputed III

    Scott Adkins, star of Undisputed III: Redemption, was featured in the February 2011 Black Belt issue’s cover story about what constitutes the 21st-century martial artist. He’s a student of judo, wushu, Krav Maga and gymnastics, and used all of them in his role as Russian inmate Boyka for the two
    Read More »

  8. Chael Sonnen: Ankle Pick

    Chael Sonnen: Ankle Pick

    UFC fighter Chael Sonnen demonstrates the ankle-pick technique during a photo shoot for Black Belt magazine!


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  9. Chael Sonnen: Omo Plata Technique Demo

    Chael Sonnen: Omo Plata Technique Demo

    UFC fighter Chael Sonnen demonstrates the omo plata technique during a photo shoot for Black Belt magazine!


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  10. Chael Sonnen: Ground and Pound in Opponent’s Guard

    Chael Sonnen: Ground and Pound in Opponent’s Guard

    UFC fighter Chael Sonnen demonstrates his ground-and-pound technique when in an opponent’s guard during a photo shoot for Black Belt magazine!


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