NOTE:  Michael Caulo is an undefeated amatuer mixed martial artist who lives on Long Island.  He runs his own blog at, where he shares his training and fitness tips and much more. Be sure to visit his new forum too

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Last night I caught the finale of the ultimate fighter, and it raised a few questions in my head.  As well as raising a few questions it show cased that the UFC is still superior than the WEC talent with the co main event match up of Anthony Petis vs Clay Guida.  Also making an impressive ufc debut was Chris Cope basically dominating Chuck O'neil, which was the perfect example of what I had discussed in a prior article of being outclassed by a better striker.

So the first question that came to mind after watching the fights last night was, What is the best base for a striking background to transition into MMA?  Another question it raised was What is the best base for a grappling background to transition into MMA.  The reason I ask they questions specifically is because throughout the fights I have watched I hear two styles consistent come up, wrestling and Tae Kwon Do.

As strange as it is most Martial Artists start with either Karate and Tae Kwon Do, and I have noticed TWD has been a good transitional tool for Professionals and I even feel it has benefited me as I make my transition into MMA.  Now I never wrestled growing up but, have spent a majority of the last year working with more wrestling styled grapplers to help my submission grappling game and believe me it has a great effect.  I have heard many pure bjj fighters say that to become the best submission grappler, BJJ is the perfect base but I am looking at an mma career.  To me the ability to dictate where the fight will be fought as well as being able to stand back up if you are taken down is huge.

Even look at the styles that were featured in last nights UFC card.  Look at the winners and they all have a background in either wrestling or Tae Kwon Do.  This says a few things, that TKD has been underrated and can actually be effective if applied properly and a less obvious statement of wrestling is clearly the best grappling base to bring into MMA.

For those of you youngsters out there, learn from the pro's of the sport and get yourself involved with wrestling asap.  Even though most academies offer actual MMA classes, it can't hurt to develop a solid wrestling game to build your foundation.



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