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Best Art for Bean Pole

  1. My 13 yo son wants to take and compete in a martial art. He wants Judo, BJJ or Muay Thai. I am ignorant on the subject, but it seems to me, his physique would suggest that grappling is not for him. He is 5' 10" and weighs less than 120. Long and lanky, it seems to me, is not good for BJJ and perhaps even Judo. Should I steer him towards Muay Thai?

    This is for sport.
     
  2. In my experience, Sport makes for better real-world training than anything else anyway. Let him do whichever appeals to him more. I've dabbled in Muay Thai and spent a few months practicing Judo and BJJ together and you can't go wrong in any of these areas. I'm about 5'9" and I excelled in Grappling more so than striking, although I've spent most of my time in Martial Arts doing Boxing and a few years in Kung Fu when I was younger. I'm currently enrolled in Judo because it's the cheapest of all the above mentioned, but I'd like to move on to a full MMA school.
     
  3. Did you ever watch UFC 1? A skinny 175 pound man was tapping out huge guys. Since he's almost 6 ft I would venture to say he has long legs. He would have a great triangle. :)

    On the other hand, he would probably have reach advantage on any opponent in his age group ...

    Edit: What about boxing? The fees at most boxing gyms I've looked at are a fraction of any BJJ/MT/judo clubs I've seen.
     
  4. I'd love it if he would box. I would do it with him. For some reason he thinks boxing is dumb.

    He wants to compete. He realizes he won't be an Olympian, but he wants to have a little success. That is why I was trying to figure out which he would have a more natural inclination. I tihink being tall for your weight would make throwing hard, but maybe sweeps an props would be easier.
     
  5. Well both judo and BJJ are more technique than strength, and are both fun as heck. If you don't think that small people can tap you or throw you, try grappling with some of the higher ranking females at a club and it will change your outlook on strength vs experience. Also, I've found that being tall myself actually helps me throw because I can get more leverage.

    Muay Thai is pretty brutal compared to grappling arts. If you think your son will be ok getting kicked in the legs, kneed in the stomach, and punched in the face then he may be ok with MT. Of course you don't have to spar if you don't want to, but you mentioned he wants to compete, so he will have to spar to prepare.

    Most if not all clubs worth anything will give you a free initial lesson. My advice is take advantage and go to a few clubs to try it out and you two can decide which he will enjoy more.

    Also, you can visit the Sherdog forums (http://www.sherdog.net/forums) and they have dedicated forums for striking, grappling, strength, conditioning, diets, and even gear/gear reviews. It's a great resource of knowledge, especially the FAQs.
     
  6. Thanks Ralff. Let me ask you one more please. I have no interest in MT. If he BJJs or plays Judo I might try. Be part wussy, I have some concerns about Judo on my old bones. I am 50. Do you think Judo, even with proper breakfalls, is too rough on an old timer? Would I fair better in BJJ?

    I think I may nix the Muay Thai. He is a track athlete. He is a good sprinter, finishing 2nd in the state meet. I don't think I am ready to let his legs get kicked.
     
  7. Well it depends on how serious you want to be about it. I'm 30 and judo was pretty rough on me. A proper breakfall will mitigate the impact but it still doesn't change the fact that you're hitting the mat at a pretty considerable speed, and even practicing breakfalls I still didn't do them properly a lot of the time. That said, the club here is really good about being gentle if you tell them up front, and almost always someone will ask you if they can fully throw you before doing so. I forget what it's called but we did a lot of "fake" throws, basically you get the other persons feet off the ground up to about the midway point of the throw and then let them back down without actually sending them over. They also had separate classes for "normal" people and those who wish to compete.

    BJJ is also intense but most of the training takes place when you're already on the ground. That's not to say that BJJ is not harsh on the body, it can be if you train hard, but not as much as judo.

    I think both judo or BJJ will give your son what he's looking for. Judo is a worldwide sport and BJJ usually has local competitions all the time, especially if you're anywhere near a city. Heck, start him early and maybe he could be one of the few Americans to win the mundials. :supergrin:

    Edit: The "fake" throws I was talking about is called "uchikomi" and seems to be pretty common.
     
  8. Thanks Ralff, I appreciate your time.
     
  9. Always happy to talk about combat sports. :supergrin:
     
  10. Judo. No question. Being lanky or tall is not a problem. Since when did b.i.g. spell B-A-D?!
     
  11. A higher center of gravity than your opponents seems like a disadvantage with some throws.
     
  12. What did y'all end up doing CJ?
     
  13. I would go for something that focuses on pressure points and grappling rather than strength.Jiu-Jitsu maybe?
     
  14. Sorry I missed this He is starting BJJ tomorrow. My original post, months ago, was planning for post basketball season. It ended last weekend.
     

  15. Awesome man. What gym?

    It's pretty likely that he's going to get demolished for the first few months. Try to keep his motivation up.
     
  16. Way cool, Jack. IMO you can't do much better for a bean pole.
     
  17. We are going to try two different gyms. One is Solid MMA and the other is American Fighter Gym.

    He knows he will get demolished. But I will try to keep his spirits up.

    I really wish he would play Judo, but I cannot convince him.

    Thanks fellas
     
  18. Just got back from class. He had a lot of fun. He got to roll with a 20 year old that has two months experience and did not get submitted. He also rolled with another first timer that was also in his twenties and outweighed him by eighty pounds and he submitted him three or four times.
     
  19. Awesome!
     
  20. Took him to a different gym yesterday. He got a free one on one lesson. Teacher said he has a great build for BJJ.:rofl:
     
  21. Been checking back into the thread here/there, and glad to see the progress so far.

    [fingers crossed for judo]

    ;)
     

  22. Yep, us tall skinny guys can get our legs around limbs and stuff that short legged people have a hard time with. :)
     
  23. I think that instructor's been smoking crack. If he's tall and lanky then a kicking art would be right up his alley such as Taekwondo, Tang Soo Do or even Hapkido to a certain extent. As long as we're talking sport usage. From a self-defense standpoint, most of those don't qualify.

    Just be careful not to get roped into contracts, high belt testing fees and all the crap that usually comes with a Korean martial art. If you happen to be a bit more interested (or him) in self defense the Kong Soo Do or Uechi Ryu would fit the bill very well.

    If you want some additional input Jack, click the link in my sig line (Martial Warrior). That discussion board is small but has worldwide membership and they'd be more than happy to offer their advice as well. It is small becuase it is the 5th incarnation of Martial Warrior and the full membership from the old board hasn't signed in yet to this new board. But the folks there will be more than happy to offer input.