Sports - What are they?

Author: Theweakeredge ,

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  • Theweakeredge
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    SO - This forum - Basic interpretations of sports - what are they? why are they designed how they are? how many people enjoy them? why should one play or watch them? It's to simply quantify anything and everything about a sport. 

    May seem kind of cliche, but football, anyone wanna tackle all this for football, just to get the ball rolling?

    I'm sorry.

  • Sum1hugme
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    A physical competition with a specified rule set?
  • Theweakeredge
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    Like - the motivations behind them, why? What is the essence of football? What does it do? What does it accomplish? Why and how does it work?
  • Sum1hugme
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    Well I'm a combat sports guy so that's what I'll speak to, and I can tell you that motivations are different for everyone.  Most people in a given MMA class are there for either self defense training, or to get in shape. The sport itself had motivations of creating a setting where martial arts "styles" could be putted against each other in a time where most people thought fighting was like the karate kid. I've heard that the Gracie clan set up Royce with easy fights in UFC1 to promote Gracie jiu-jitsu. And theres of course the monetary gain. 
  • Sum1hugme
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    If you're looking for "essence." The three most important aspects in fighting are : technique, athleticism, and aggression. And a surplus in one can often make up for a deficiency in another
  • Theweakeredge
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    Huh that's really interesting actually - you know - this is kinda random, but if I could ask a favor? 

    I actually write quite a lot, and I'm working on several short stories, where fighting is a pretty popular thing to do within. Do you think you give me some tips on some basics off combat? Or at least some typically used techniques? I'm not terrible I would say but I feel like I could definitely do better. 

    Anyways- to the topic at hand -I would figure something like that for MMA at least, it makes sense to me anyway.
  • Sum1hugme
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    Yeah that's fine, but I'm no expert.

    I would say the same three fundamentals apply to football too, and maybe tennis. Although the rules of the sport tip the balance in different directions

  • Theweakeredge
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    That makes sense I suppose - certain limitations would mean certain aspects are more emphasized than others. In football, there are pretty strict rules about how you can tackle your opponent, which severely limits physical aggression. I think? 
  • Sum1hugme
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    Really the rulesets modify the technique. But like the size of a tennis court and the weight of the ball require a light, technical touch, rather than an aggressive one in most cases.

    Judo was fundamentally changed by olympic rulesets. Judo used to have a really good ground game, but with the olympic rulesets scoring throws and not allowing ground fighting, olympic judo, and as a result almost all judo became a sport of pretty much just throws instead.
  • Sum1hugme
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    As an addition to what I said about the surplus of one making up for a deficit in another in fighting. I think that's why former football players do really well in MMA when they first start because their athleticism is so developed, that their technique can be lacking and still dominate. But then when they start getting into harder matches where their competition is equally athletic and more technically developed, they start losing
  • Theweakeredge
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    Huh, so their raw physical attributes, their ability to react to others, strength, stamina, endurance, hand-eye coordination and so on, allows them to compete with what more technical people? Yeah, I would think so, I think its just athleticism in most cases helps most of those things.
  • Sum1hugme
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    Yeah, and going by the same "three main aspects of fighting model," a person with lower levels of technique and athleticism can win fights through sheer aggression alone.

      Also, consider the essence of stand up fighting alone. Muay thai is the most complete stand up art, and it is fundamentally a game of extremely high speed, high risk, rock-paper-scissors. Only it's knee-elbow-highkick-lowkick-stright punch-etc. And many things counter many things.

  • Theweakeredge
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    Interesting, is there a particular reason that certain techniques cancel out others? And I would presume that there are exceptions, such as the fighting equivalent of scissors being used by a very experienced fighter may beat the fighting equivalent of rock?
  • Sum1hugme
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      Well first we need to define technique as the efficient application of strength and athleticism.

      One good example is a straight punch as a counter to a low kick. In most cases, a straight punch to the opponents jaw will do more physical damage than the low kick you're receiving in return. It's mainly about the physical characteristics of the technique in conjunction with the ability of the athlete to apply it more efficiently than the opponent, as there are plenty of cases of someone ending fights with low kicks, even though they've been punched in the face.
  • Theweakeredge
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    Oooh, I see. So it's more along the lines of how this attack does damage in this circumstance compared to another? Not in particular that this attack will always beat out that one. Okay, I think I understand it a bit better.
  • Sum1hugme
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    Yeah, fighting has an insurmountable amount of variables to be able to say that one technique will always work as a counter to another. So we have to talk in terms of percentages. Also, some people don't have the baseline athleticism to pull off certain techniques. 

    One example is an escape from the thai clinch that is literally putting your hands in the opponents armpits and deadlifting them up and pushing them away. Without the certain baseline strength, it's not a technique that will work.

  • Theweakeredge
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    Ah, yeah, a vast amount of techniques are out there that I do not have the strength nor endurance to really pull off. Once I'm out of quarantine I'm actually looking forward to starting conditioning, I'm fairly out of shape.

    As for the other side, yeah that also makes sense, people and techniques are very vast, so combining them would make it hard to try to quantify it beyond percentages. 
  • Sum1hugme
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    Also, some people are so strong that they can apply it less effircently than an opponent with textbook technique and still be successful.

    To quite Gordon Ryan, "Lifting is the most important thing for jiu-jitsu. The second most important is being good at jiu-jitsu."

  • Theweakeredge
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    Do you have a recommended middle ground? Also what would you say the difference in conditioning may be between sports? I know in some obvious cases, like endurance and the like would be more emphasized in cross-country and track when compared to football, stuff like that, but what would be like some fundamental differences there? If you don't mind my asking
  • Sum1hugme
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    I'm not sure what you mean by middle ground, so I can't answer that exactly. 

    I have played a few sports in my time, and really it boils down to practicing fundamental techniques and improving relevant athleticism for greater technical efficiency.

    But there is some martial arts specific conditioning that isn't necessarily athletic. Shin conditioning by thai fighters is a good example. Kicking a hard bony part of a person like the knee hurts, so fighters will condition their bones to be harder and their nerves to be deadened so that when they throw a low kick and it gets checked, it doesn't feel like they just broke their shin bone.


  • Theweakeredge
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    By middle ground, I meant between my state of not conditioning and not over conditioning, as in overworking myself. 

    So the conditioning is just dependent on the sport, and the physical improvement is more of a side effect of developing technical skills?
  • Sum1hugme
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    Our bodies will adapt to the demands we put on them. So if you want to be reasonably athletic, doing some burpees and pullups every day will get you there. But if you train with killers every day, you will adapt to that environment also.

    It's more what you mean when you say conditioning. In boxing, we do lots of functional training (jump rope, calisthenics) before we do bag work or sparring. And it all comes together for you in the ring. If you haven't been training relevant athleticism, it'll show when the technique isn't very efficient.

67 days later

  • Jasmine
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    People play sports because it's fun.