Functional Striking Tips With Stephen Whittier
“I wanna know how to fight” a common question asked by young men and women around the country everyday. The reason the question is asked could be any number of motivations.. Watching the UFC or Kickboxing which sparks an interest, or possibly a bully at school or work has inspired someone to learn how to defend themselves.
Truly, it does not matter what the reason or motivations are, the want or need is there and that interest should be pursued.The problem is there are a ton of martial arts studios out there that have no business being, well in the business of martial arts.
Fighting like any sport needs to start with fundamental concepts that will carry through the journey taught by a good teacher. Who is really qualified to teach those fundamentals? If this was a movie, you would climb to the top of a mountain to meet some guru and punch a mountain all day and in 30 minutes you would be ready to take on your arch nemesis.
Problem is this isnt a movie it is real life and requires real teachers with real knowledge of the fundamentals of striking.
There are hundreds of hours of free videos on the internet that will teach you to jab, or try and show you footwork, but there are no full videos out there that will efficiently put together all the techniques into a system for you. This is because they don't have a system. If they did they would have their own instructional series.
Stephan Whittier teaches out of the Straight Blast Gym (SBG) in MA and is here to show how he takes new fighters at their facility and turns them into striking machines. If you are unfamiliar with SBG their affiliates have trained fighters like Connor McGregor, Forrest Griffin, and Rory Singer to name a few.
Now just because Stephan is one of the head instructors, at one of the best academies, producing the best top tier fighters out of the east coast may not qualify him to provide instructional material. Until you take into consideration who Stephans teacher is.
Stephan is a ranked student under Mark DellaGrotte. DellaGrotte is widely considered to be the best Muay Thai Instructor in the west, does not give rank lightly. Mark only promotes the best that he trains and only does so when he believes that you are ready for that achievement. Afterall you are a direct representation of him.
That might be why currently DellaGrotte only has two students ranked “ Red Mongkul” under him. Stephan Whittier is one of them, and that accolade is beyond reproach.
Stephan has been training fighters how to improve their game for several years now. He also takes new fighters from wannabes to legit contenders utilizing his system in a short amount of time..
Giving fighters a fundamental understanding of not only how and when to throw strikes but the theory in which to really make their fighting an art.
For instance look at the video below, Stephan is showing a simple concept on how you can mix strikes low to high. This keeps a fighter offensive and creates openings along the way as well as maintaining the appropriate distance.
If you missed that true gem of information in the video, Look at how Stephan uses his feet. He makes adjustments to maintain range so he does not get jammed or crammed against his opponent which would kill his power.
It truly is the little things that make the difference when drilling and sparing. Once you get those good habits established, your body will react properly during times of stress (like during a fight).
“You fight how you train so train how you fight” holds true, so why not learn something from one of the best teachers in the game today.
Instructionals often glaze over the basics. Many teachers believe students want to see the fancy stuff so they skim the basics and get to the good stuff. The problem is without the basics a fighter will never get to the good stuff.
What Stephan has done is create a COMPLETE Fundamentals guide to functional striking. Stephan has done a fantastic job at leaving no stone unturned when it comes to his approach and applications to the techniques used.
For instance in Section one, Stephan gives core concepts to keep in mind, Stance and Structure then Five different footwork drills for attaining the basics of footwork. Then he covers offensive tools, then knees and Elbows…..That was just section one. There are three more sections after that!
There is an entire section on Kicks, a section on Combos and most importantly a deep dive into defense. None of the strikes matter if you take every shot thrown at you.
Just Check out Stephan Whittier's Fundamentals of Functional Striking here!