Learning How To Fight From Videos

Learning How To Fight From Videos

At one time learning how to fight from videos was one of the few options many of us had. Where I lived when I was younger there were limited dojos available to me. To satisfy my quest for knowledge in regards to learning Martial Arts I would order VHS videos from different magazines I read.

There wasn’t web with a wealth of knowledge like we have now. Also, I couldn’t just read reviews like this to find out if the video I’m about to spend money on was good or not.

Not surprisingly quite a few videos I bought were a waste of money.


Videos Reviewed
Intro to MMA with Chris Lytle
Marcelo Cohen- Roosterweight Kimura System DVD
7 Essentials – James Clingerman
Tom McMahon- Wristlocks for the Win DVD
Dare to Be Fearless: The Everyday Woman’s Guide to Self-Defense vol. 1 DVD- AJ Clingerman


Before I get into the reviews on the videos I want to address a few things.

When you are learning how to fight from videos it should be a supplement for your training.

Personally I supplemented my Martial Arts training when I was younger because of a lack of resources. I did not have the facilities or money to train the way I desired and needed videos to supplement my aspiration.

Present day I still order videos and watch a ton online for a multitude of reasons. I want to see how the same technique is presented from different instructors. This allows me to hear different thoughts on a technique and how it should be applied.

I can continue refining what I know so that I can get better. This applies to myself and also allow me to teach students better by learning different angles of thought.

Learning how to fight from videos is great but should not be your sole method of instruction.

Whether it’s money, location, or other reasons that don’t allow you to have a proper instructor, videos can be a great resource. If you are just looking to get into shape more with just minimal instructional you can go to my article about Martial Arts Workout DVDs.

I am going to review some instructional videos offered at Fight Hub.

If you want to get started they also have a great selection of free instructional videos that you can find by clicking here.

To get more in depth instruction they do offer a great variety of instructional videos that you can purchase and view at home.

The Fight Hub is a great resource for Martial Artists. It is possibly the top online resource for Martial Arts training. They also carry a large inventory of Martial Arts supplies and gear.

There is over 30 DVDs and 15 streaming On Demand videos. Most of these videos are very specific in regards to position or submissions. Similar to a well taught Martial Arts class.

When I am instructing students I don’t just work on 30 different moves each practice. Usually we focus on 1 or 2 positions or techniques and spend the class focused on that.

Most of the DVD programs are set up very similar.

The first DVD I am going to review is a great introduction for those who are beginning their Martial Arts journey. Also, a great DVD for those more experienced as a lot of fundamentals are broken down in great detail.

This DVD does go over multiple positions, submissions, and techniques but I felt as an introductory DVD that covers a large field it should be the first reviewed.


Intro to MMA with Chris Lytle

How To Fight From Videos

Making his debut in 1998, Chris Lytle is long time veteran of MMA. Known for being an excellent well rounded competitor Chris shares some of his tricks from multiple scenarios in this video.

I started Ju-Jitsu around 1995, it was many years after that I started training MMA specific and how to use a cage to my advantage. This is something they get into in this video.

There are MMA specific items you train when you compete. Many of these items translate over to self defense and techniques you can use in the street.

  • Improve your striking in this video as Chris breaks down some common strikes and looks to improve your technique.
  • Using the cage to take down your opponent and also how to get up using the cage is covered in this.
  • Escapes and reversal from bad positions and some guard play is introduced in this DVD as well.
  • Also, some guard passes and submissions are covered.

Some really great training tips and regiment concepts are laid out in this DVD.

This video is really a great resource as experienced players will be able to grab some tips from this. If you are new to Martial Arts then this DVD will touch on most positions and concepts to give you a good base to begin your training.


I’ve always felt possibly the best submission to learn is the Kimura.

It can be applied from almost any position. Another reason I feel it’s so great is your opponent must defend it.

Many times my goal with applying a Kimura is not necessarily to get the submission. Forcing my opponent to defend it will allow an opportunity to get out of a bad position.

Very simple to learn but enabling yourself to master the technique to the best of your ability can be a game changer.

Marcelo Cohen- Roosterweight Kimura System DVD

How To Fight From Videos

This DVD is from Marcelo Cohen who is a high level BJJ black belt. Marcelo is known for his ability to apply and finish with a Kimura.

What makes this such a great learning tool is Marcelo competes at the lowest weight class. Meaning the majority of his training partners are going to be much bigger than him.

When you don’t have the ability to use strength or brute force on your opponent you have to refine your technique to be able to win on the mat or survive on the street.

This is an amazing DVD that even the most experienced grapplers are going to benefit from. Marcelo demonstrates a very methodical approach to the kimura.

Set up, grip, and application are thoroughly detailed in this DVD.

Marcelo explains the kimura from several positions to allow you to apply it from about everywhere. Not only does he cover in depth how to finish with the kimura but also escapes.

Learn how to better use the kimura to set up sweeps, improving your position, and getting your opponents back. You will also learn how to better defend the kimura yourself and how to take advantage of countering your opponent’s kimura attempt.

Much less expensive than a seminar or a month of training at most dojos.

This DVD will bring a kimura master into your home to personally improve your kimura game extensively.


I ended up choosing five videos in the Fight Hub library that I felt were the best investment for myself and my readers. The next video I’m going to review is another video that covers multiple positions and concepts instead of just focusing on one technique like the previous video.

James Clingerman has several videos available in Fight Hub and honestly I can can see why after viewing a few of them.

7 Essentials – James Clingerman

How To Fight From Videos

The description of the DVD is what initially intrigued me to purchase it. James is going to breakdown 7 concepts or positions and demonstrate 7 techniques from that position.

You will go over 7 basic essentials for your stand up game.

  • Break down the jab, cross, while implementing them into combinations.
  • Slipping punches and setting up your strikes are also covered.

The video also transitions into bringing the fight to the ground. James covers 7 takedowns, how to set them up, and execute the takedown.

Once you are on the ground the video keeps with the theme and you learn 7 different things you can do from multiple positions.

Seven different attacks from the mount and guard, along with 7 different sweeps and escapes from a bad position. In addition there is also seven different drills you can do on your own to work on your game.

I really liked the presentation in this video. All the techniques were legitimate and useful. A good all around training DVD that provides a wide range of techniques to learn.


Tom McMahon- Wristlocks for the Win DVD

applying wristlock video

I have to be honest, I am extremely limited in my wristlock abilities. The main reason I got this video was to improve on something I’ve never been good at. Wristlocks are very sneaky and efficient if you can become proficient with them.

From my own experience dealing with people who go after wristlocks and as I was searching for free videos on wristlocks I found a common theme.

Wristlocks hurt and it’s annoying to roll with people who do them.

If you are new to a dojo or training partner you might want to ease into trying these during a live roll. Perhaps you want to first just work on them in training before you go after them during sparring sessions.

In this video Tom breaks down the basics of the wristlock and how and where to apply them. What really opened my eyes in this video was where I could apply the wristlock. Most positions are covered in this DVD and I never really had an instinct to go after a wristlock before.

A big advantage I have noticed is wristlocks force your opponent to defend. Similar to what I spoke about in the kimura review, if you can’t finish the lock you can use it as an escape. However, I will say I notice a big difference in reactions to the wristlock. I think this is because the kimura is much more common and the wristlock a little more unique.

People will often overreact more than they have to with a wristlock which will give you a larger window to transition for something else.

I still have  long way to go with working on my wristlocks but am very satisfied I picked up this video. There was stuff I found free online but nothing to the detail and practicality that I found from this video.


One of the biggest reasons I ordered the next DVD was an influence I had last year in my first year coaching youth wrestling. We had about 30 kids on the team ranging from 5-12 years old and about a third of them were girls.

Dare to Be Fearless: The Everyday Woman’s Guide to Self-Defense vol. 1 DVD- AJ Clingerman

womens self defense

It was so much more a rarity twenty years ago to have women training with us. It is one of the greatest changes I’ve seen and I still feel a lot more women should be learning Martial Arts.

Women are the victims in the majority of reported assaults. Unfortunately, even with an increase in participation women are still the minority in the dojo.

One of the many things I think is great about videos like this is the separation from defending yourself and fighting. If you can break away from your attacker and run from the situation you’ve won.

Surviving does not necessarily mean winning a fight.

This is obviously a video geared towards women but this training also relates to men. One of the advantages women do have by being the minority in the dojo is most often they are practicing with men.

More often than not the men will be physically stronger. Without the crutch of overpowering their opponent, this will generally force them to have to focus on technique. Often because of this, good female Ju-Jitsu players have modified common techniques to account for facing physically stronger opponents.

The hardest students to often teach are men who are strong gifted athletes.

They are able to use their athleticism and strength to power out of and apply a lot of moves. Often they take longer to develop good basic techniques because of this. Men can learn from videos like this and female instructors because it will help prepare them for stronger more athletic attackers.

Many scenarios of self defense are laid out in this video.

Men may face similar situations in which they can use the same technique. For women, videos like this are crucial for knowing how to defend yourself in the worst case scenario. What I love about this video is the approach to awareness.

Avoidance is the best form of self defense.

That goes for men and women. If you can avoid a life threatening altercation by learning and understanding situational awareness that is the best path you can take.


In conclusion I picked the five videos I’ve seen in the Fight Hub library that I thought would be a great starter or addition for your training. There are many technique, position specific videos like the 50/50 Gaurd, De La Riva, Von Flue Choke, seminars on video, and many more.


Have you ever tried to learn how to fight from videos before?
If you are currently training or an instructor how do you use videos for your training?


  1. JAX

    Thank you for this review. I am a fitness enthusiast and there is a boxing room in the gym. There are a lot of people practicing boxing in it, and I am also very interested. I asked the gym staff and it was expensive, so I gave up. After reading your article I think I can buy some videos and maybe I can learn something from it. thank you.

    1. Lee Goupil

      Thanks Jax 

      If you don’t have the resources, ie money there is alternatives we can do. 
      Pick up a good good video and you can practice bag work and forms. 
      Here is another article I wrote reviewing some MMA videos.  
      Most of these are designed towards conditioning but also have some instructional videos as well.  

  2. Cathy

    I learned a lot reading from this article, not because I have a strong interest to fight, but for a very long time, I wondered if there’s an online niche for promoting martial art skills. In my previous discussion with a fellow blogger, he was in the opinion that martial arts can only be tutored through physical contact. While that’s true in most ways, I believe learning through media has its pluses too and your links to the tutorial sites mentioned proved that he’s wrong. 

    Exactly, before the internet, we only have VHS and people learn all sorts of things through that format. Nowadays with blogs and videos, I don’t see why martial art learning would be less popular. It should definitely be more engaging 

    1. Lee Goupil

      Thanks for reading. 
      You can learn a ton from videos, you can also purchase grappling dummies and bags to improve as well. However I feel to learn how to efficiently apply them a live person will be critical in the end. 
      take care

  3. Travis

    This is great information, I don’t know about you but I use martial arts to blow of steam sometimes as well. This would be perfect for when I’m having a tough day I could just put on of these videos on and get a good work out in. I’m also very interested in the video for self defense that is geared towards women, I would like to get a copy of that for my daughter, I think that it would be helpful as she gets older. Thank you for sharing, I will let my friends know as well! 

    1. Lee Goupil

      Thanks for reading Travis.

      Sounds like you have a good plan, just take that next step and let us know how it goes. 

      I HIGHLY recommend that you get your daughter into some kind of Martial Arts program. 

      Outside of just the self defense aspect of it all, there is a mountain of benefits she could gain from it. 

      Check out this article I did on Kids and Martial Arts. 


      Take Care 

  4. Nimrodngy

    Thank you very much for this article.
    I go to the gym for 5 years. I would like to do fights but it costs a lot in my country to take fights lessons.
    I would like to purchase Marcelo Cohen’s package which is a professional and from which I will learn the basic techniques I need. The $ 39 is just perfect for the quality of this lessons.

    Good luck!

    1. Lee Goupil

      Thanks for reading. 
      Marcelo’s video is great and a steal for the price. 
      A lot of the techniques are easy to learn and just need practice and confidence to apply. 

      Unfortunately here in the States we run into the same problem.  Depending on where you live a good dojo can be very expensive.  

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