In every sport, height is very important. Even if it is basketball, football, volleyball, or even individual sports like tennis or badminton, having blessed with the gift of reach can be an edge. But sometimes, it can also be a disadvantage, particularly in combat sports like mixed martial arts (MMA).
For this post, we will be talking about the importance of height in MMA and the ways of negating such an advantage.
Importance of Reach
Having a greater reach is an advantage in combat sports such as MMA and boxing. Why? Because it can be used for offense and defense, hitting two birds with one stone.
By having length, a fighter can attack while keeping himself far from receiving any damage. Probing becomes easier with reach as well. With enough distance, lengthy fighters avoid committing mistakes like making themselves too open.
Also, positioning becomes better with tall fighters. The position is crucial in a fight. A professional boxer can execute a devastating blow with a proper stance, which could hurt or knock out his opponent.
Regarding defense, distance has a vital part to play. Taller fighters can have one of the most impenetrable defenses if they have the proper footwork and a solid jab to pair with their gift.
Length is such a great advantage IF a fighter knows how to use it. It should only be used as an extension and not rely on it that much. There is always a need for a combatant to hone their striking skills, speed, accuracy, and defense.
Neutralizing Lengthy Opponents
Yes, farther reach is an advantage in MMA. However, success is not always 100% guaranteed just because the fighter is taller or lengthier than the other. There will always be ways to turn the advantage into a disadvantage.
Cutting the distance is the most effective way to neutralize a lengthy fighter. This method must be done in a surprising manner so the opponent will have no time to react.
Another option for shorter fighters is to take the fight to the ground. If the taller fighter is taken down, his length will be deemed useless, and if worse comes to worst that the submission defense is mediocre, it would result in an upset.
Shorter brawlers could also use striking combinations to camouflage their takedown attempts. Wrestling can also be used as a counter against an attacking taller fighter.
It is also important that tall fighters lack the skills in close-range battles. They might be good at straights or uppercuts but do not have the power for hooks.
Shorter fighters polish their footwork, positioning, and head movement to take advantage of this knowledge to erase the reach gap.
If you ask anyone, having the height is a gift taken advantage of by players who were lucky to be blessed. How the fight will play out can be heavily influenced by it. It can be a major advantage but not something crafty and clever fighters cannot overcome.
Some fights predicted by OKBET proved that shorter fighters could win against their taller opponents. Nevertheless, matches that feature a tall fighter and have a good offense and defense can be difficult to defeat. This is why in most cases, the lengthier fighter is slated as the favorite.
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