Fight Winning Blows From Clinch With Benson Henderson
Being efficient from the clinch position can be extremely difficult. Often your arms are tied up and you are in a position where it is difficult to create enough space or an angle to start working attacks. Being effective from the clinch is particularly important in MMA fights due to the broader range of attacks that are possible such as takedowns.
Although this can be a difficult position to work from, it also offers ample opportunity to deliver fight winning blows. A well placed knee to the body or elbow to the face can absolutely end a fight or place you in a great position to execute fight winning attacks.
Who better to learn clinch techniques from than Benson Henderson. The former UFC Lightweight Champion and WEC Lightweight Champion has a list of impressive wins on his resume, such as those against Donald Cerrone, Nate Diaz, Jorge Masvidal, and others.
Since his professional fighting career began in 2006, Benson has gone 37-9 in mixed martial arts. He has been competing for Bellator MMA since 2016 and has had many high level fights since his signing with them. To add to his striking experience, Benson also coined bronze metals at brown and black belt at the International Braziallian Jiu Jitsu Federation championships, as well as a background in high school and amateur wrestling.
Benson begins the video by explaining the differences and difficulties of the clinch in MMA. He compares it to traditional Muay Thai grips or a wrestling over under hook, where in MMA the clinch is much more dynamic because you also have to be worried about defending knees to the body or elbows to the head, which could be a fight ender.
The clinch position Benson is working from in this technique includes both people having collar ties, with their other arm gripping their opponents collar tie arm. The first step in this variation is to create space between you and your opponent. This can be done by pulling away and chopping down at your opponents collar tie, starting at their elbow and chopping down to their hand. This both frees your head and gives you the ability to create space, while also occupying their arm for a brief moment for you to sneak in with an attack.
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In the act of chopping their arm down, you load up your own arm and create a path to their face to attack with an elbow to the head. Additionally, since you still have a collar tie on your opponent, you can use that to pull their head into your elbow. When you maintain the collar tie and clear a path to their head, it is extremely difficult for an opponent to defend.
When in a clinch, an experienced fighter is going to be aware of the threat of the elbow. To distract their defense you can start attacking with knees to their legs to make them have to address and think about that instead of defending the elbow.
This is only one small portion of all that is offered in Benson’s instructional. The two volumes primarily focus on power kicking to all parts of the body, however they also include other variations of clinch attacks, jab countering pad work, Muay Thai countering and sweeps, as well as tons of drills to be practiced with a partner.
Do not miss this opportunity to improve your clinch and overall MMA techniques from a professional fighter who has much to offer at Benson Henderson. Click here to view his instructional!