Martial Arts Round-Up – February 25, 2011

By Sensei Serge Sognonvi and Carmen Sognonvi
Originally published at

Here’s a round-up of our favorite martial arts-related news stories and blog posts that we came across this week.

MMA: Sport or Spectacle?
A co-worker recently asked martial arts blogger John Vesia if he thinks MMA is a sport. The underlying connotation of the question seemed to be that MMA couldn’t possibly be a sport, since it doesn’t seem to have any rules and is filled with gratuitous violence. Despite the efforts to “clean up” MMA, it still has a bad rap and is banned in states like NY. What will it take to change the public perception of MMA?

Muscle Memory & Confusion for Building Technique & Strength
Jiu-Jitsu instructor Lori O’Connell continues her series on the role of muscle memory and muscle confusion in martial arts training. In this post, she demonstrates three different sets of warm-ups that capitalize on muscle confusion. The first is a ground warm-up combination of shrimping, bridging and rolling, and turtling. The second helps strengthen the ab muscles by absorbing hits from a medicine ball. The third works the core by swinging your arms and legs in opposite directions while lifting your hips, causing you to move across the floor.

Should I Put Karate On My Resume?
Martial arts blogger Rob Redmond poses a compelling question: “You have been doing karate a long time, and you have achieved significant success in it. You have earned your first, second, third, or higher dan rank. You finished instructor training. You are qualified as a referee, examiner, and instructor. You are licensed by seven different organizations and are even trained in CPR. Why shouldn’t you list these achievements on your resume?” His answer may surprise you!

Knee Defense Against Jab and Cross
MMA strength and conditioning coach Rob DeCillis shares a video that shows you how to defend against a jab and cross using a knee defense. If you try it out, here’s a tip from DeCillis on getting the technique right: “Make sure you apply a decent amount of pressure when grabbing the neck, as it hits a pressure point while you grab.”

Sanchin & The 4 Secrets of The Skill of Strength
Is strength a skill? Karate blogger Jesse Enkamp thinks so. He argues that strength is “the skill to tense one’s muscles harder.” And because it’s a skill, there are shortcuts you can use to take your skill to a new level. In this post, he outlines four techniques you can use to improve your strength: irradiation, bracing, successive induction, and power breathing.