Wrestling 101: Wrestling in Mixed Martial Arts
Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a complicated sport to watch and there are many nuances for a newcomer to the sport to learn. A couple weeks ago I introduced you to “MMA 101” and went over the three basic arts that comprise MMA: submissions, striking, and wrestling.
Greco-Roman wrestling may be one of the more foreign styles for a viewer in North America to watch, but it also offers the most reward as it incorporates more high amplitude throws than any other style of wrestling. Unlike Folk-
and Freestyle, you can only attack from the torso up in Greco-Roman wrestling. You cannot use the legs at all to score points, so the emphasis is on upper body engagement. Because of this, a fighter with a Greco-Roman background brings something unique to the game of MMA. “Greco will bring an aspect to MMA that no other background can create,” said Christian. “In Greco, position is everything, unlike the other forms of wrestling. In Freestyle, wrestlers shoot a ways away to take someone down. Closing the gap and controlling underhooks, body locks, and attacking the body is what Greco is about.” In this way Greco has direct application to MMA and having the ability to get in close and do damage through wrestling or striking to an opponent.