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#251858 - 05/08/06 01:47 AM Worth the trouble?
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Pressure point study can run very deep.You could get into all of the elements,special points,etc...
Is it worth the time,effort,and trouble to train this way? Would your time be better spent on more practical applications that come easier?
During a fight I think pressure points take alot of skill to hit right and different people are affected different ways anyhow. You never know what will work and what won't on Joe Snuffy.
With the amount of training time alotted to most of us(not very much)should we be spending too much time on these?
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#251859 - 05/08/06 08:19 AM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: BrianS]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
Brilliat question Brian. My personal opinion is that yes you should learn where the points are and know you don't need to know the cycles or elements.

If you look at PP purely from a western point of view, most are located where a nerve junction or ending surfaces close to the skin. Our sensation of pain and emergancy messages are carried to our brain via our nervous system. Because of the importance of accurate communication with the brain, the surface nerves are located in positions whereby they are protected by our bodys natural defensive structure. In order to learn how to attack the PP we have to learn the angle and direction needed to activate that PP abd bypassing the structure.

The mistake some people seem to make is that they think that only the small activation point around that point is at risk. In reality, the whole region around that point is vulnrable to attacks at that angle and direction, albiet the results may not be quite as effective if you miss the specific point, you'll still get a lot more bang for your buck.

For example take the rib cage. If you look at the points on the front of the torso most require a downward angled strike to activate. Now look at the way most people attack the ribs... They use shovel hooks and uppercuts. Now look at the structure of the ribs... They are designed to take impact in and up. So when stuck in and down we go against the natural proctective structure of the rib cage. At its base level, PP fighting is more a study of the weaknesses of the human structure more than anything else. This is something that *ALL* martial artists have a vested interest in. There's usually a lot more to be gained in studying the anatomical structure around a point (muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves and bones) than there is in knowing the Acupressure side of things. Learn how to attack an area of the body and watch what happens when you do so correctly, then things get interesting.

Then, if you decide to take things further, learn the elements and cycles. Here's the cool bit though. Once you've learnt the structure bit and found out what happens when it is attacked properly, the element stuff fits in perfectly. Take Large Intestine 10 on the arm which is a metal point. Hit that correctly and the fire points in the neck present themselves! Those little Chinese wise dudes were pretty damn clever where you really look at it properly!

Hope that answers your question!

Gav
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www.SHIKON.COM
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#251860 - 05/08/06 09:18 AM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: Gavin]
underdog Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/18/04
Posts: 1270
Loc: Mansfield, MA U.S.A.
I would agree about 95% with Gavin. One could get carried away with the TCM aspect of things. PP made sense to me after I spent time with Kelly's book "Death Touch". There are other books now too that rediscover pressure points from Western Medicine perspective.

The important thing to remember is that pressure points is not a style. Study your style. Learn something first and continue to learn. Pressure points isn't going to help you if you have no basic skills. Then, if your style says hit someone in the head with an upper cut, what is wrong with learning exactly where to plant that upper cut? If you want to execute a wrist lock, what is wrong with learning how to manipulate the tendons to loosen up the wrist to facilitate the wrist lock?
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#251861 - 05/08/06 09:21 AM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: underdog]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Thanks for the detailed reply Gavin. After considering it I think only a moderate study of pressure points is worth the trouble. I think you can get lost if you get carried away. Then when you get older you'll start throwing chi-balls.

I'm just sayin'.
_________________________
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#251862 - 05/08/06 09:39 AM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: BrianS]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
Know eactly what you saying mate. At SENI (the UK MA expo) I had a session with Tom Muncy of the DSI. He put me in real pain simply by using tiny manipulations fanastic stuff, but all seemed a little too complicated to be practical for me. At this present moment in time I've taken my PP study as far as I want to go at the moment. I know the angles to hit at and how to hit there and I can do it in practical applications. In terms of learning the detailed science behind it I'm quite content humming away as I am at the moment. Power and impact generation are the areas I'm really trying to get indepth with at the moment. I'm kinda of lucky though, as I have to learn all of the the acupoint stuff through my Shiatsu, where as others don't have that luxary. As you hinted, people can get too carried away with it... Like Russell said in a post here a while back, PP are only 5% of the puzzle.
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Follow me on twitter @taichigav

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#251863 - 05/08/06 05:12 PM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: Gavin]
Kosh Offline
Member

Registered: 03/04/05
Posts: 302
Loc: Novo mesto, Slovenia
I agree with Underdog and Gavin for the most part. I think it`s woth the trouble, but maybe not so much at the begining of your training. Also it shows there can be more to striking than just blunt force. I`ll get old one day in the very distant future and maybe I won`t have the strenght anymore to defeat attackers with strength. But maybe I`ll be able to use PP with good results.
I`m not saying of course you can`t use them before.

Quote:

PP are only 5% of the puzzle.




_________________________
Peter ...Understanding is a three-edged sword...

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#251864 - 06/23/06 02:05 AM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: BrianS]
Demonologist437 Offline
Member

Registered: 03/03/05
Posts: 159
Loc: Hodunk, Illinios
If you desire to know how to defend yourself with your training, you must learn pressure points.

Or, skulk around the strengthening section of fightingarts.com and strive to get as muscular as you possibly can to the exclusion of all else.

Reason for that is, pressure points, I believ, are not five percent. They are what MAKE your techniques work.

Every single technqiue you perform should have a point in it somewhere; even in grappling and striking you should be hitting points. If only, because they release joints(grappling) and make your strikes that much more effective(boxing/striking).

The thing is, as I have always understood, we never train to defend against ourselves. We train to defend against those greater than ourselves. Becasue you never hear stories about how the Lanky teenage kid tried to mug some old lady. Or, your buddy never gets beat up by a mid-sized skate-boarder. It's always some tall, wide, or just plain bigger and stronger sonuvagun with a bad attitude that gives people trouble. Psychologically, that even makes sense.

So, if they are always going to be effectively stronger/tougher than us, no matter our training regimens, how can we stop that?

Simple. Rely on our technique.

BUT, our technqiues can be resisted, right? It's not like the dojo, it's like the street, right? Well, that's where pressure points come in.

If we know how to make the body hurt and break it's systems down, the strength/toughness/speed of the guy no longer matters. Then, you're not trying to hit them so hard that they hurt, you're making the body THINK it's been hit so hard that it hurts. Thus, much harder for them to resist.
Thus, our techniques work, and therefore we get out of the situation in a single piece, not many.

If we rely only on simple attributes like strength, speed, endurance, etc., then we will just be thwarted later on. Again, you can NEVER be the strongest. You can NEVER be the toughest. You can NEVER be the fastest. And, most likely, the guy who is greater than you in one or more of these attributes lives in YOUR town, and has a somewhat short fuse to boot.

So, you NEED to learn pressure points, in my opinion.

Yes, it can seem daunting at first, but take it bit by bit. All you need to be able to defend yourself well is a functional understanding of Yin/Yong, and destruction cycle. Get a chart, learn elements, and learn point locations/activations. And, you're done.

Keep running over your charts+begin memorizing elements, and you're good for life. All that's left is to practice, right along side with everything else.

So, Gavin, I disagree. I do not believe pressure points are 5%, they are a solid 50%.

Because otherwise, it's just strength. A punch is a punch, a kick just a kick, and arm bar just an arm bar. But, if you understand the pressure points, your technqiues become more than just blunt trauma, they become actual "Techniques", as opposed to just sport-boxing with your legs.

I don't know, maybe I got myself into trouble again, but hey, I should know.

I'm a skinny kid with Crohn's disease, and might die before I'm 40.

Yet, not a SINGLE one of my friends(the tough ones at that) will let me touch them, because they know what I can do.

Just my opinion.
_________________________
"Success is a process, not a destination. Have faith in your ability."~Bruce Lee

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#251865 - 06/23/06 08:57 AM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: Demonologist437]
underdog Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/18/04
Posts: 1270
Loc: Mansfield, MA U.S.A.
Well stated thank you. I am a complete underdog who actually USES this stuff at work where even if I weren't an underdog, strength and the ability to inflict medical damage is NOT the goal. I would not be able to defend myself without pressure points. I rely on techniques and they are always played out against violent patients with real intent to harm who select me because my physical attributes suggest that I am easy prey. I try once in awhile to start a line here about how pressure points are utilized in actual practice and how they help and to encourage others to post on how PP help them in the real world, but there is generally little response. PP are worth the trouble. If you are having trouble with a technique you are trying to learn in your own art, the problem may quietly be that you are not exploiting the pressure points. Your sensei may be using it correctly with or without awareness and not be able to explain it to you.
_________________________
The older I get, the better I was!

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#251866 - 06/23/06 01:37 PM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: underdog]
Russell_Stutely Offline
Newbie

Registered: 01/12/06
Posts: 22
Hi

Knowledge of PP's and how to make them work etc are not worth a dime if you can't earn the right to land your technique. That is why they are the last 5%.

Yes, they can make up for large strength deficits, BUT ONLY once you are in there.

Myself and my colleagues have rigorously "field tested" this, so as to speak. PP's are VERY important to your training, but still, remain at that last 5%.

Not trying to say I know more about this subject than you guys, but I do have a lot of experience of PP's and how to make them work... I don't want people to make the same mistakes we used to make with them, years ago.

All the best


Russell
_________________________
Russell Stutely www.russellstutely.com

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#251867 - 07/03/06 01:41 PM Re: Worth the trouble? [Re: Russell_Stutely]
underdog Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/18/04
Posts: 1270
Loc: Mansfield, MA U.S.A.
I had an experience last night which I think illustrates the role of pressure point training. At work, we were going over techniques during down time. My background is martial arts. The man I was working with is a wrestling instructor. I am weakest at the wrestling part of the art. The association works well for me. He showed me a few techniques that I can exploit for leg attack take-downs. Early on, I decide I have the 1-2 techniques that I can take home and work on. He USES the pressure points well for the technique. He doesn't "know" anything about pressure points but he has good technique which at his level, means that one way or another, he has learned to apply the PP even if it just because he says, "you have to do this here". The third person is this group is an ex-cop who doesn't know a lot about wrestling or traditional martial arts, and nothing about PP. He has trouble making the technique work. Technique comes first. PP will not substitute. Then, once you know something, PP either makes it better or is a silent integral part of the technique. Either way, PP are worth learning. As exemplified in my experience last night, it made it possible for me to learn a new technique much more easily.
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