UFC 4: How to Defend Takedowns – Sprawl, Submissions, Denials & more
The most repeated phrase in MMA is “wrestling is the best base” – so punishing it will be very important.
UFC 4 is here, and that means you’ll need to cover your bases to be successful in the octagon.
One important thing to be ready for is wrestling, and that all starts with the takedown.
Here’s how to defend takedowns in UFC 4.
Defending Takedowns in UFC 4
Wrestling is always dangerous, and with more effective takedowns and slams in UFC 4, it’s more powerful than ever.
To combat wrestling from the start, you’ll have to be able to shutdown takedown attempts.
In UFC 4 the system for defending takedowns is simple, but you’ll have to be quick, because it leaves you open to strikes, and you won’t be able to do it in response to shoots very easily.
To defend takedowns in UFC 4 you’ll need to hold both triggers at the same time. This will automatically stop takedown attempts, but will prevent you from blocking strikes.
To stop takedowns/trips from the clinch, you’ll need to get comfortable breaking clinch ties with movement, and countering the transition attempts just like ground game transitions (timing the right direction with the right thumbstick while holding RT/R2).
Using Submissions to Punish Wrestlers
Because wrestling is such a huge part of MMA, and UFC 4 as a result, you’ll need to have some experience with its natural counter, strong jiu jitsu.
Being effective off your back means you won’t need to worry about stuffing every takedown attempt, and will make even the best wrestlers think twice about diving into your guard.
To have effective jiu jitsu, and be able to threaten submissions, you’ll need to master some fundamentals.
These include denying transitions (holding RT/R2 and choosing the correct direction), baiting transition denials (cancelling your transition attempts at the right timing to catch the opponent), and using advanced transitions to get into more dangerous positions.
Once you have these grappling basics down, you can begin threatening submissions in a very real way after tiring out and denying wrestlers.
Standup and Movement
For an opponent to secure a takedown, they’ll have to reach you first. That means with standup and movement on the feet, you can make it very difficult for wrestlers before the grappling even begins.
Some easy ways to combat takedowns before they reach you include good movement (including things like circling, and good distance management) and effective striking (using quick strikes like jabs to interrupt takedown attempts, and powerful strikes to catch opponent’s offguard).
By presenting problems for your opponent on the feet, not only can you make it more likely your opponent will have to rely on shooting a takedown or getting into clinch range, but you can delay the grappling battle while scoring big.