What's the best MMA book?
June 2, 2008 1:32 PM   Subscribe

Is there a widely-regarded "best book" on MMA (like Starting Strength is for weight training)?
posted by A Kingdom for a Donkey to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
I'm not sure what the best book is but I know Charles Staley put a book out about Combat Conditiong. I don't know if it's any good, but Staley is considered one of the best strength coaches in the world.
posted by P.o.B. at 4:42 PM on June 2, 2008


I only own Mastering JuJitsu, by Renzo Gracie and John Danaher. Having flipped through a number of them on the shelf, I think BJ Penn's book looks best. It has a wide variety of techniques, shows the all important transitions, and covers in some depth each range of combat (striking, clinching, groundfighting).

But I can't really get into books, myself. I don't find them to be a useful learning tool. (For reference, I've trained MA for 9 years, 8 of it in BJJ, with some Judo and boxing tossed into the mix.)
posted by HighTechUnderpants at 5:29 PM on June 2, 2008


I agree with HighTechUnderpants that BJ Penn's book is probably the best out there, and also that, unlike weight lifting, you really can't learn this kind of thing from a book, assuming you want to learn to fight in MMA. The techniques are just too hard to explain in words, photos, or even video. You really need an instructor to show you the techniques and correct the subtle but critical things you're getting wrong, and partners to try them out with.

Also, about learning mixed martial arts as one unified discipline, some people, like GSP and Jon Fitch hold this view:
The second thing is mixed martial arts is not a fighting style. It is a sport. You need to learn each style that goes into mixed martial arts on it’s own in order to be successful using it in an MMA fight – and people just hate that idea. They don’t want to put on the gi, they don’t want to kickbox or box, they just want to do MMA. I’m sorry buddy; you aren’t going to get anywhere doing that.
Not having done any MMA myself, I can't agree or disagree. I do think that right now, you can't learn to fight effectively in an MMA match by just learning "MMA," as it's not yet old enough to have a system that's both codified and well-tested. Or at least not one that's widespread.
posted by ignignokt at 7:41 PM on June 2, 2008


I hate to be a downer, but Starting Strength is very useful for beginning lifters to read alongside a little bit of coaching from someone more knowledgeable and experienced.

On the other hand, you should not attempt to self-teach MMA out of a book. Combat sports are all best learned with close tuition, by trade experts.
posted by crunch buttsteak at 9:45 PM on June 2, 2008


What are MMA, MA, BJJ, and GSP?
posted by gum at 10:26 PM on June 2, 2008


What are MMA, MA, BJJ, and GSP?

MMA = Mixed Martial Arts (the more legitimate term for what most people dismissively label 'ultimate fighting')

MA = probably a typo of the above (correct me if I'm wrong!)

BJJ = Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, a variant of the traditional Japanese martial art developed and popularised by the famed Gracie family; Royce Gracie gained international prominence/notoriety when he competed in the first UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) in 1993

GSP = Georges St Pierre, a noted practitioner of MMA and the current UFC welterweight champion
posted by macdara at 1:39 AM on June 3, 2008


On reflection, MA probably isn't a typo, and just refers to 'martial arts'.
posted by macdara at 1:41 AM on June 3, 2008


crunch buttsteak said:
I hate to be a downer, but Starting Strength is very useful for beginning lifters to read alongside a little bit of coaching from someone more knowledgeable and experienced.

On the other hand, you should not attempt to self-teach MMA out of a book. Combat sports are all best learned with close tuition, by trade experts.
True dat. I should have clarified that for now I'm only interested in reading about MMA and getting a better understanding of the sport to enhance my viewing experience.
posted by A Kingdom for a Donkey at 3:42 AM on June 3, 2008


This used to be the standard about six or seven years ago. I haven't kept up with the evolution of the sport since then.
posted by Telf at 8:25 AM on June 3, 2008


Ah! If that's the case, then I think BJ Penn's books is probably a great fit for you.
posted by HighTechUnderpants at 11:31 AM on June 5, 2008


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