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#316318 - 01/20/07 11:02 PM Re: Low x-block [Re: Chen Zen]
student_of_life Offline
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Registered: 10/12/05
Posts: 1032
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
thats most likely why the technique wasn't designed to defeat the wing chun man. most karate movements work best on people who have been lured into making the "first" shot, in this case "first" also means their last.

theres not too many a martial artist that would pnch like the guy pictured, the application is for self defence against a jerk off who wants to hurt you, not a highly trained martial artist who has challanged you to a mortal kombat.

don't fight is the general rule, theres no reason for kata to display strategy for sparing.

your point is appreciated though, but a boxer would have done this....and a tkd guy would have done that.....and a systema guy would have tried to use proapaganda from the 70's......

im not sure i fully understand the reason why its worded this way, but the text goes something like this " karate techniques were designed to be used against people who did not know the methods being used against them." a fighter with half a clue wold have attacked with more ballance, true. but aikido follows a similar frame of mind i think. but i do think wrong from time to time, sshhhh don't tell anyone....


yours in life
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#316319 - 01/20/07 11:14 PM Re: Low x-block [Re: student_of_life]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
So by your post, one could say that Karate was not designed to beat the Karateka?

I have issues with that line of thinking. I dont train to fight Joe Barstool, I train to fight the best. I dont need techniques that only work against an unskilled opponent. I want the ones that work against the highly skilled opponents. Then if Joe Barstool does come along, I still have something for him.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#316320 - 01/20/07 11:47 PM Re: Low x-block [Re: Chen Zen]
student_of_life Offline
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Registered: 10/12/05
Posts: 1032
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
like i said, i kind of have issues with it too, the way it looks to me is far to limiting to the karateka and his ability to defend himself. i mean, joe barstool is one of alot o fthreats that could blind side you. alot of people involved in violent attakcs do have some knowledge of "martial arts" in that, alot of guys i know who fight regularly work out in a local boxing gym and on their own heavy bags, so they know how to throw some decent hands alright.

the best i can figure is that it roughly translates into - use the simpelest posible way to win. simple for lots of reasons.

and as for training to fight the best. karate is a civilian self defence system, and is aimed at downing some one who dosn't see it coming. fighting "the best" is kind of confusing? are you stalone in some 80's paramilitary action or something?? you like to spar and win in competetive places, thats kool. karate will teach you to take advantage to oppertunities your opponent makes, and every one makes them, if the mma guys (for example) never made an unballanced attack then no onw would ever get taken down or knowcked out.

befor i go needlessly on like usual, the idea is to take advantage to the mistake your opponents make and finish the fight as quickly as posible after exploiting that opening. the same frame of mind is in any martial art, im proably just explaining it poorly. the idea that a different punching method would have defeated the technique pictured is stupid, its like being 5 and saying that one power is better then another. if a different attack was used then the apropiate defence should be applied, weather or not either party is capable is not really debatable.

yours in life
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#316321 - 01/20/07 11:58 PM Re: Low x-block [Re: student_of_life]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
I think each technique must be evauluated and have its own measure of merit. You have to look at each one from all angles and consider its pros and cons. In a situation such as the one drawn above, there are better options on both players parts, the attacker and defender. The attacker made a mistake by his tradtionalism and the defender made a mistake as well because he defended in a manner that leaves him vulnerable. Both are Bad Techniques. Just because your opponent uses a bad technique do you have to counter it with another?

As for wanting to beat the best, thats not so confusing. I want to win. No matter what. If its the street, the ring, wherever whoever I want to win and I want to survive. Simple. To do that, you must be prepared to face the best out there.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#316322 - 01/21/07 12:16 AM Re: Low x-block [Re: Chen Zen]
student_of_life Offline
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Registered: 10/12/05
Posts: 1032
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
i feel like im running on your coat tails here chen, why don't i just come over and we can speed this crap up,lol.

see, theres that damn different point of views thing again. i don't think that either technique pictured is bad. the traditionalism in the punch?, are you talking about the arm being pulled to the side?, either then that, the guy is pnching at the face. please explain a little more.

and the defending technique, let me try this text bunkai crap again.....the x position of the hands is being slamed down onto the other guys elbow joint, with enogh force to make it bend. this causes the opponents face to drop toward the defender, then the defender grabs the opponents arm or sleve and hits him in the face or neck with a back hand, from there he continues to grapel. maybe knees, eye gouges, strangles who cares, thats not the point.

i understand its very easy to dismiss the pisture as stupid, but please understand that alot of time has already gone into evualating every movement of kata, and there pro's and con's are understood by alot of people. and further evualaition is still bring done, and will always be done.

im sre youve herd of iain aberbethy and others like him. kata bunkai is the next fad i guess you caould say for traditionalists, im sure if you liked the technique, you'd have already incorperated it into your personal training schedual.

what ever floats yours boat

oh, and every one who trains for self defence or for sport trains to beat the best, therefore all techniques can, and have worked befor. thats why there tought nowadays, for the most part anyway. i understand that there is a mind bogeling ammount of bs out there, but thats usually dressed in multicoulured gi's and have 45 patches and logo's on themselves.

as far as i know the traditional kata are aplyable, and adaptable. as far as i know.......

yours in life
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#316323 - 01/21/07 12:32 AM Re: Low x-block [Re: student_of_life]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
"Traditionism" What I meant about the picture. Notice, this is your typical reverse punch. The stance is a tradtional front stance, low, with the chambered fist. Notice his lead leg and striking hand are different. This implies that he stepped in with the punch in a telegraphed manner. Its a bad technique. The stance gives him limited mobility. The chambered hand leaves him little to work with defensively as his one chambered hand must protect his torso,centerline, and face. His punch is fully extended, which is never good. Its what would lead to him being trapped or easily countered.

The X Block is also a bad technique. It does have good stopping abilities and is able to set up the grab. However blocking is the lowest form of defense. This particular block relies on poor execution from the opponent, but what if he fights well? It also requires that both hands be in one place and be in use. This leaves you little to defend yourself or attack with.

As for techniques I use or dont use, it has little to do with if I "like" it. I HATE to grapple, but I do it because I know it can help me.

I dont approach my training with such things as Like or dislike, karate or kung fu, traditional or modern. The only two things I care about when selecting and training is works and doesnt. Im going to do my best to dissect a technique before it becomes a part of me. This gives me an idea of what to expect when training and performing with resistance. Also, this weeds out alot of the BS.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#316324 - 01/21/07 12:59 AM Re: Low x-block [Re: Chen Zen]
student_of_life Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/12/05
Posts: 1032
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
the "clasic" front stance is just a position in which the body weight has been transfered foward towards the direction of attack, it makes the punch stronger like you hear boxing coaches saying all the time to put your weight into your punches, thats what a front stance is designed to teach. in a real fight that position would not be as pronounced therefore not limiting movement. the use of low stances in training is to teach speed at low postures, therefore at a higher more natural posture you should be able to move a little faster.

the "x" block position could have statred from a clinch, your hands around the opponents neck, then the bottom hand feeds under the target arm and they both snap down fast and hard draging the head down and opening the neck for the fowlling attack.

as for tellegraphing the attack, every attack it tellegraphed. its just a matter of being faked out and missing the opertunity.

having both hands in one place is not a bad thing, its like saying that fighting from your back is a bad thing, say that to the bjj guys. both hands are only kept in one place for a split second, because they would be used to strike down on the elbow joint, they they move again, one holds the other strikes.

im summery, the stance is a trainer for power generation and direction not to be used in a live situation so pronounced. the attacker using a reverse punch, its similar to the cross in boxing so wtf is the difference? you tell me?? the attacker tellegraphed, of coarse he did because the context of karate self defence is to wait for the opponent to make the mistake of taking his mind off defence while he makes an attack, that is the chance to kill him. he tellegraphed because he moved, not because he used a crappy attack. it takes a calm head and reaction time training.

that about covers it as i see it. the picture is just a picture, a training aid. im sure oldman never ment it to cause such a problem, he was just provding an example. there is a reason for every thing, evrey position in kata, the arm placement, stance, posture, everything. please don't just shoot the idea down, because its not what it looks like, its more like a code, and you have to understnad the language to interpret the idea wholely.

yours in life
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its not supposed to make sense

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#316325 - 01/21/07 11:16 PM Re: Low x-block [Re: student_of_life]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
"In a real fight the position would not be so pronounced"

Then why train it or against it as if it would be?

Say what you will about both hands being in the same place as ok, I just cant agree with it. It leaves too many holes.

"The reverse punch is similar to the cross in boxing"

Not even close. First, a boxers feet are closer, he is more square with his opponent. His hands are up at his face and when he strikes, movement is not wasted because his fist doesn't travel from his waist or back to it. He does not fully extend and when he strikes he is still covering his head. That is nothing like a Traditional reverse punch.

"The context of karate self defense is to wait for the opponent to make the mistake of taking his mind off of defense while he makes an attack, that is the chance to KILL HIM"

Come now, kill him?

So if a karateka is waiting on me to attack, so that Im not thinking about defense, what is the karateka thinking of as he makes plans to attack me? Attacking? Or defending my attack? Either way it would seem to me if I have the attack launched Im a step ahead of the karateka. And at the least on level ground with him.

And you can talk about telegraphing all you want. Sure, every move is telegraphed but TO WHAT DEGREE? Thats whats important. If your hands are by your waist, they will take longer to reach out and strike then if they were by your head. If they are returning to the waist, they have that much farther to travel on the withdrawal as well.

If both hands are in the same place at the same time, there is still that extra wasted movement that you must perform before you can successfully block or strike.

And Im sure Marks picture was just a friendly example, not meant to be the basis of discussion, but it is. And my analysis of it is also friendly. I know Mark is a quiet capable Martial Artist, on and off the mat. However, I have to speak freely and honestly about the things I see.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#316326 - 01/22/07 07:43 PM Re: Low x-block [Re: Chen Zen]
Shonuff Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 603
Loc: London, UK
Although in principle I agree that two hands blocking is bad, I still occasionally find myself throwing both hands in the way of a particularly powerful kick to the groin that I didnt see coming and yet don't end up paying any horribly painful price.

The low x-block is a pretty natural response to a surprise attack in that region and I think that surprise is one of the keys to understanding this movements traditional application.

I believe that what the kata's try to show us through the contexts they have surropunding this movement is how to turn the disadvantaged position of the surprises ambushee into the advantaged aggressor. Almost every kata example of this movement that I can think of follows it up with a mid/high attackblock of some kind in anticipation of the kickers natural followup attack to the exposed area. Dropping both hands to block works in this case because of one other factor, Power!

To Shotokan at least (I believe this is universal but I know some will argue otherwiise) it seems to be the rule that distance allows you to generate power. Also to throw real strength/weight into a kick most of the time the upper body will lean back slightly to put the hip in, especially if the kick is an entry tech from beyond punching range. The extension of the hip on the kicking side also encourages the body to throw a strong lead hand punch (upper torso twists in to match the extension of the lead leg adding weight to the punch) as the succeeding technique, making for a fairly natural, strong, effective but predictable combination; the classic kick-punch.
Putting the hip in sacrifices some of the hand speed that one might find in a tighter closer (less weight intensive) technique as you have more to reel in.

So to the defender who detects this allmighty kick rising to his nether regions and throws down the emergency x-block. Two hands thrusting down, jamming the kick and entering bullet time. Yes he's open up top, but who cares. The attacker is still shifting his weight forward while our stable stalwart front-stanced karateka disengages and thrusts his hands up to parry the incoming punch and do something nasty with it (and yes he is balanced enough to lean/shift back a touch to give himself a little more time if he needs it because he is a karateka and balanced is what we do).

So long as you apply it appropriately I think it works just fine as a block. If done correctly it has the added advantage of being particularly damaging to the shin and cutting into what the attacker sees as a pretty safe entry combination before he has time to think and adapt.

OLDMAN -
Great drawings as ever. Personally I see the app you showed as a variation on the upper x-block. In Kankudai and Gankaku (and others) we have a high open handed x-block which is then brought down to chest hieght with closed fists followed by two front kicks. Standing left foot forward recieving a right handed punch. If the right hand age uke's by the attackers wrist and the lead hand crosses above the punch, then when you pull down tuck the left hand behind the right forearm in a figure four hold and the right hand grabs the now supine fist bending it back towards the attacker and down onto the forearm, bringing your adversary into a semi kneeling position like the one drawn but with the wrist painfully locked and their arm tied up in a hold. Two kicks almost seems cruel at this point.

CHEN & STUDENT
I disagree with the idea that karate was only meant for defence against the untrained. I think that idea came from the mentality of "if I can't do it then it wasn't meant to be done" as held by one Choki Motobu. I also don't think its a good idea to train hoping your opponent will make a mistake (intercepting the fist; attacking during the attack is the ideal counter method). If civil defence was all karate was for then a simple self defence course would be all that was required. It would not take the years of training described by karate history to master.
The most convincing idea I have heard was that of the bodygaurd system as detailed in the book Shotokan's Secret.
However, I think many m.a-ists fell down in the past because they trained against highly skilled specialised tactical fighters (tkd comes to mind) and weren't quite ready for the wild windmill of punches that Mr J Barstool threw at them from his anti-fighting stance. Training for Mr Barstool and training for a duel with Mr Han on his island are very different things and I believe that methods for both are present in our kata.

By the way the reverse punch and the cross are different, but most of the differences are superficial. The only real difference is that one is an attack and one is a counter attack, everything else is window dressing. Deep stance is narrow stance is no stance etc.

Or at least that's what I think of it all.

So most of you have stated that the low x-block is best applied as a non blocking technique. So how else might one use it? Medulanet had some good suggestions. I personally think it makes a good floor restraint but I prefer that use when it is performed from kneeling.

Any other ideas?

Good debate guys!
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#316327 - 01/22/07 08:52 PM Re: Low x-block [Re: Shonuff]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
Pretty good for the most part. Except the part where you explained to me that karate wasnt designed for simply use against the untrained. Perhaps you missed it but if you re read the conversation, I didnt advocate this point and actually was rather against that type of ideology.
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Lao Tzu

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