Hand to hand combat: elite soldiers in MMA / UFC?

Why don’t we see many elite soldiers in MMA competitions?

Between an elite soldier and a professional fighter, there are huge differences in terms of:

  • Training – One trains to kill quickly without limitations, the other for a bloody but sporty show / competition, one for example to march for a long time, the other to give the maximum for a few minutes, one to widely use weapons, the other to fight bare hands (with gloves), one to survive in extreme conditions, the other to fight only in predetermined contexts (etc.)
  • Interest – Not all soldiers may appreciate the idea of fighting and wasting their time / energy on something that (in a reasonable way of seeing the world) is totally useless (eg. not for their country); another possibility can simply be that they have seen enough blood in their lives and that they do not want to see¬†more
  • Conceptions – A soldier may not recognize as “real” a clash with such restrictive regulations (read The 6 types of martial clash), he might consider it “fictitious” (eg. in the reality of a lethal context it is not enough a pat on the back to preserve life nor strategically make points to gain the victory)

The fact is that, although the comparison may seem “logical” (to a neophyte / amateur):

  • It is like trying to compare a digital graphics expert with a programming expert – It simply does not make sense, even if they both deal with information technology, they work in totally different sectors
  • Having two professional careers is not normal¬†– If having two normal careers is difficult, having two at the highest levels is, at least, rare; who already excels in his field for what reason should spend the little time left to enter in another one?

Primary and collateral attitudes

Having said this, it is a matter of logic that, at the same psycho-physical conditions, everyone becomes good at doing what he does for more time and with the greater dedication.¬ No one can excel in everything.

There are limits to what a human being can optimize and when we talk about the highest levels of preparation (elite military corps, sports champions, etc.) it is obvious that they can easily be reached:

  • Are elite soldiers good free-body¬†hand to hand fighters? – On average, surely yes, it is an abundant part of their training
  • Are they better than expert fighters who train all day to do it in an extremely more specific way? – On average, certainly not, it’s mathematics

In conclusion, it is important to stress that:

  • Some soldiers actually fight in the cage, sometimes,¬†with good results (let’s do not limit our research to¬†the 3-4 most¬† famous names)
  • Nothing excludes that a person can prevail even in a field that is not his but it is simply less likely
  • The elite units are the flagship of military propaganda (let us not be fooled by what we see on the internet or on TV)
  • The greatest impact on the effectiveness in the fight is given by the person who fights,¬†from his mental setting and from the training that follows, the technique of struggle is (proportionally) much more secondary

In-depth articles


Reply in the comments and share your experience:

  • What is the principal difference between a warfare combat system and a fighting sport in your opinion?

Author: Master Kongling

Founder of 6 Dragons Kung Fu.

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