Controversial social media influencer and former kickboxer Andrew Tate criticized Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s usability in an unregulated scenario recently.
“stay on your feet. Use your hands. Do not go to the ground.”
“BJJ and wrestling are useless if you have multiple attackers.”
Tate is a retired kickboxer so it’s no surprise his bias is towards the striking arts as opposed to grappling. He is famous for controversial remarks he’s made on social media so it’s no surprise he’d try to tease the passionate jiu jitsu fan base.
And BJJ’s reputation hasn’t been immaculate through the years. The martial art that was once a staple in UFC is now mostly outranked by high level wrestling.
This is in part, due to sport BJJ leaning away from the self defense fundamentals and more into it’s own thing.
This video that went viral showcases the BJJ deficit perfectly.
To be able to go to ground with somoeone, you have to first be able to take them to the ground. This is an area in which some Grade A jiu-jitsu athletes struggle. Great examples are perpetual Welterweight gatekeeper Demian Maia, and rising strawweight McKenzie Dern.
And while Dern is hindered by her lack of takedown ability, Gilbert Burns and Charles Oliveira are using BJJ as a weapon to intimidate competition into avoiding BJJ exchanges with them at all costs. Burns had Chimaev fearfully backing away from his jiu-jitsu and Oliveira racked up quite a spree before Makhachev’s top pressure got to him.
Of course it can also be argued that this kind of a move wouldn’t work in most promotions. As per unified boxing rules, kicking and kneeing a grounded opponent is illegal and a foul that’s penalized with disqualification, as Peter Yan came to learn the hard way.
Ultimately there’s no perfect solution in martial arts – there’s just many options that you should be aware of in order to protect yourself adequately in a number of different scenarios.
Since 2014, Benny A. King has been fully immersed in the world of combat sports. Starting with a blog about Greco Roman wrestling, Benny’s passion for combat sports has led him to explore various disciplines.