SMESH: Khabib The Eagle


Khabib Nurmagomedov is regarded as one of the best MMA fighters of all time, with 29 wins and no losses. One of the key elements of his fighting style is the "smesh," a Russian term that roughly translates to "crush" or "smash." The smesh is a grappling technique that involves overwhelming an opponent with pressure and control, often leading to ground and pound or submission. In this blog post, we will explore the smesh technique used by Khabib, its origins, and how it has been adapted for MMA.


Origins of the Smesh

smesh khabib

The smesh technique has its roots in Sambo, a Russian martial art that combines elements of judo and wrestling. Sambo was developed by the Soviet Red Army in the early 20th century to improve hand-to-hand combat skills for their soldiers. Sambo emphasizes throws, takedowns, and grappling techniques, making it a natural fit for the smesh.


The smesh technique is often associated with the "leg weave" takedown, which involves securing a body lock around an opponent's midsection and weaving one leg between their legs to trip them to the ground. This takedown can be used to transition to a dominant position on the ground, such as side control or mount.


Khabib's Smesh in MMA


Khabib Nurmagomedov's smesh technique has been a key component of his success in the UFC. Khabib's ability to pressure his opponents with relentless takedowns and ground control has led to dominant victories over some of the best fighters in the world, including Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier, and Justin Gaethje.


Khabib's approach to the smesh is characterized by his exceptional timing, control, and pressure. He often uses the leg weave takedown to take opponents to the ground, where he can then apply his grappling skills to control and submit them. Khabib's top game is suffocating, as he uses his body weight to smother opponents and prevent them from escaping or mounting any offense.


BJJ Fanatics Course on Smeshing


Khabib's success with the smesh technique has led to a renewed interest in Sambo and its application in MMA. In recent years, BJJ Fanatics has released a series of instructional courses focused on the smesh and other Sambo-based techniques. One of the most popular courses is "Sambo: The Top Game - A Blueprint for Smeshing" by Khabib Nurmagomedov himself.


This three-part series covers a range of techniques and concepts related to the smesh, including takedowns, control, and submissions. Khabib provides detailed instructions on his approach to the smesh, including using the leg weave takedown, body lock control, and pressure. The course also includes tips for drilling and incorporating these techniques into your own training.


Adapting the Smesh for Your Game


While the smesh is a signature technique of Khabib Nurmagomedov, it can be adapted and applied to a range of grappling styles and situations. The key to successful smashing is to focus on timing, control, and pressure. By using these principles, you can overwhelm your opponents and control the pace and flow of the match.


One way to adapt the smesh for your game is to focus on your takedown and top game skills. By developing a strong takedown game and maintaining top control, you can create opportunities to smesh your opponents and wear them down. You can also incorporate elements of the smesh into your submission game, such as using a body lock or leg weave to secure control before transitioning to a submission.