Knee-on-the-mat penetration step?

I have been training wrestling in Corea for a good year now. When I learned the "penetration step" (drop step), I learned to put my knee on the mat. However, here in Corea, putting the knee on the mat is a HUGE no-no.

Everyone tells me that putting the knee to the mat is WAY too slow. However, this is the way I learned it and it works for me, so I want to just ignore these folks. However, I teach basic wrestling to people who want to do MMA as a hobby, and my teaching methods get called into question.

Personally, I can see the merit in not going all the way down to the knee when performing a penetration step. However, I think that learning a drop step by placing the knee on the mat has several distinct advantages:

  1. It teaches a wrestler to LOWER THEIR LEVEL. Beginners too often try to charge in without lowering their level and they get punished for it.

  2. It is an "exaggerated movement" which helps beginners learn how to coordinate their bodies and HOW TO SHIFT THEIR BODY WEIGHT during a drop step.

  3. It allows learners to easily branch off into other moves such as the low-outside single and John Smith single, both of which require the knee to touch the mat.

  4. When an opponent sprawls, wrestlers often end up on their knees. Performing the dropstep with the knee on the mat helps wrestlers get comfortable DRIVING THROUGH the opponent while on the knees.

  5. Putting the knee on the mat gives you a lot more "distance" with your penetration. A relatively shallow step gains a lot of distance when the leg rotates forward and the knee hits the mat.

  6. Putting the knee on the mat gets you low -beneath your opponents center of gravity, making a lift that much more easier.

  7. Going to a knee helps beginners to learn how to KEEP GOING FORWARD with their leg attacks. I have seen too many beginners step in, grab the legs, stop all forward momentum and then try to lift their opponent. The drop step helps beginners learn how to MOVE FORWARD while lifting.

Lastly, the people who have told me not to teach the penetration step with the knee to the ground have failed to provide me with an alternative. Personally, I don't know how to teach a penetration step without touching the knee to the mat, let alone teach it to others.

I am curious to hear other people's thoughts on the issue. Knee on the mat? Yay or nay?



This is a topic that seems to come up often here. There is some good info here and here.

Thanks for directing me Aus. Since I am not a blue-namer, I am unable to search for past threads.


Those pretty much cover it....if you ever need me to search for some threads, let me know, man.

I think what that Clinchandhit was refurring to in regards to Kevin Jackson's "stutter step" was a back step first. He emphasizes the backstep on all his shots.To me, this just seems to add one more conspicuous portion to the equation in the double leg, and in my opinion, could be a telegraph for the opponent. Like Chip was saying, guys like Kevin can get away with certain things that us mere mortals cannot succeed with. Now regarding the knee dip, Kevin Jackson does not touch the knee down on his double leg. In Ultimate Takedowns the double leg is not covered very well. Two versions of the takedown should have been shown, one without the dip, (by Kevin), and one with the dip (by Mike Vanarsdale). I wish wrestling wasn't so dammmed technical! Why can't we just learn the techniques, and forget about them. I personally like the dip, and find it a necessity, I'm a little taller and if I don't dip, I just end up bending too much from the waist, and the shot is a useless. Maybe it's a body type thing, shorter stalkier guys don't dip, taller guys do. Who knows?