What’s the Difference Between MMA & Street Effective Self Defense? Part I

This is always a bit of a controversial topic here at Clear Silat’s Street Kung Fu.

MMA or Mixed Martial Arts is a sport based system of martial arts which has increased greatly in popularity in the last few years here in the U.S.

I have chosen to write about Street Effective Self Defense vs MMA for our blog because publicly there seems to be a lot of confusion about the difference between these two very different kinds of arts. I find that a lot of people including a lot of MMA teachers simply do not know the difference between MMA and arts that are intended for real street self defense.

So, I hope to shed a little light on it here in a way that will help everyone.

The most interesting way I can think of to illustrate this point about the difference between Street Effective Self Defense vs MMA is to publicly state how many times I have been challenged by MMA / UFC type fighters and to explain a bit about the outcome of those challenges. Over the years I have been challenged to fight (mostly by MMA /UFC type fighters and teachers) about 15 times or so. My basic response to such challenges normally goes as follows.

First, I explain I do not train MMA and that because MMA is not what I do or train for that if I play by the rules in an MMA fight against an MMA fighter who is specifically training for such an event that I will probably lose (likely to disqualification) although I do enjoy watching MMA and UFC events from time to time just like I like watching football, boxing, or WWF wresting.

Second, and much more important to me regarding the difference between Street Effective Self Defense vs MMA, is that all of my self defense training and the arts that I practice for self defense are life or death based arts with survival being the #1 goal.

This means that in an awful street attack, evading and escaping is a very acceptable option for me. It also means that if I can not evade or escape the situation then I want to terminate the situation with extreme prejudice, as fast as I can, with as little injury to me or my loved ones as possible. There is no shame in a tactical retreat that results in me and my family safe and far away from our attackers.


Richard Clear

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