MMAmania book review: Anderson Silva's MMA Instruction Manual

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Ever wanted to train with Anderson Silva but you can't afford a plane ticket to Brazil?

Have no fear.

The UFC middleweight champion has teamed up with Glen Cordoza to bring some of his most important and basic methods to you in his Mixed Martial Arts Instruction Manual: The Muay Thai Clinch, Takedowns, Takedown Defense, and Ground Fighting.

In the book, which is broken down into seven subsections (The Muay Thai Clinch, Cage Tactics, Takedowns, Takedown Defense, Attacking the Guard, Fighting off your Back and Focus Mitt Combinations), Silva goes into step-by-step detail (with wonderful pictures) demonstrating the importance of each technique and the best methods for putting yourself into an advantageous position.

Considering his fighting prowess and status as the pound-for-pound best in the world, it was well worth the look.

Here's the full book review:

What better way to get things started than to dive right into the Muay Thai clinch? How could fans ever forget "The Spider's" incredible title shot against Rich Franklin where he effectively used the Muay Thai plum to repeatedly smash his knees into Rich Franklin's torso and face to steal "Ace's" middleweight belt.

Anderson gives a basic introduction to the position, explaining its significance to those who are still learning the sport and then dives right in. 

One must feel a little bit sympathetic for former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Rafael Cavalcante who was the short straw selector and had to be Silva's grappling dummy for the entire book. You'll repeatedly see him put in precarious positions, even including some solid reaction shots to Silva's knees or posture-breaking attempts.

Something that stands out immediately are the pictures.

There's no excuse for not picking up on the correct positioning of the hands, feet or head because Silva makes sure to include step-by-step pictures from multiple angles and even zoom-in features to show the precise grips that the hands need to use.

If the pictures didn't tell enough of the story, there's plenty of text alongside them carefully describing exactly where and when to perform each action if one were to properly utilize each technique.

This is a very simple yet effective method that is demonstrated throughout the book. Silva picks an important topic, introduces it, explains the significance and then goes into detail on exactly how to properly use the technique in question.

More importantly, he shows you not only how to perform the technique, but also how to defend against it if someone were to attempt it on you. And he doesn't just explain it in a brief snippet, it's another in depth process complete with full explanation and presentation.

Just reading through the book, it's obvious these are methods that Silva uses in his fights. Obviously, his triangle techniques in the "Fighting off Your Back" section are extremely relevant after 2010's fight with Chael Sonnen. His use of the fence and his clinch are all broken down to the most fundamental level and built back up again to the point where it's almost surprising that Silva is just giving away this information. 

Something else that is very impressive is how many options Silva gives to make sure you understand all the possible positions.

For example, he gives 14 separate methods for escaping or defending a front clinch, and he goes into detail with step-by-step instructions for each method. Every technique imaginable is used, from 

In conclusion, there are over 300 pages of solid instruction here from one of the greatest mixed martial artists to ever live. Anderson Silva's MMA Instruction Manual is a quick read, having, on average, about five pictures per page with detailed explanations for every method to "The Spider's" Madness.

There are more than enough techniques here to keep anyone who's interested in getting into mixed martial arts busy for months if they really wanted to learn and practice what the UFC middleweight champion preaches.

I highly recommend this book, as it is relevant for everyone from beginners just delving into the world of mixed martial arts all the way up to seasoned veterans, who could readily use the techniques as a reference whenever they get stuck or need to sharpen up and hone their skills.

With The MMA Instruction Manual: The Muay Thai Clinch, Takedowns, Takedown Defense, and Ground Fighting, both Anderson Silva and Glen Cordoza prove just how dedicated they are to educating both fans and fighters alike.

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