Is BJJ really an Incomplete martial art without takedowns? Yes and No!
To all my guard-pulling and butt scooting brethren out in the wild that avoid being on their feet like the plague, do you think that you’re letting an important skill set fall to the wayside? Jigoro Kano, the founder of Judo/Jiu Jitsu, once said, ‘Human beings were made to walk, not crawl.’
Personally, I’m inclined to agree with Mr. Kano here. The standup game is a beautiful and complex thing that most of us shrink away from. It’s understandable, being on the feet is very tiring unlike sitting down on the floor the moment we fist-bump. God forbid we burn some calories, right? After all, we might lose the pressure we get from our guts. God forbid we… add something else to our games.
With the way most Jiu Jitsu classes are taught, most students are probably going to see a lot of improvements in their guard game, but a very slow progression of their standup game. Too often, this slow progression encourages a lot of students to abandon the standup game in favor of their bottom game. Eventually years will go by, and these students will probably have spent maybe 1 hour on their feet for every 10 hours on the floor.
Much like any position, in order to gain proficiency on the feet, schools will need to have more sparring rounds dedicated to being on the feet. Now this might not be inclusive to everybody as some practitioners may have injuries that would make stand up rounds unsafe. Sure everyone has to make modifications to their game to fit their limitations, but then you’re conceding that your game will also be limited.
THE REALITY IS: You fight how you train. Sport Jiu Jitsu and MMA may play in the same sandbox however we must consider that when punches are brought to the table it can change everything. At the same time if you have a skilled ground game and the person you are fighting doesn't know any Jiu Jitsu it would be considered an almost “unfair advantage”
Do you think you’re a complete Jiu Jitsu practitioner without takedowns?
Truly Yours, Anonymous White Belt