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#367664 - 10/30/07 10:13 AM Karate IS (not for fighting?)
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Victor Smith

Quote:

Then again karate isn't for fighting, ever. I accept if you're fighting you're in the wrong frame of mind.





Unyu

Quote:

You mean your karate is not for fighting. Sorry, but Kanryo Higashionna, Sokon Matsumura, Hohan Soken, Choshin Chibana, Chotoku Kyan, Choki Motobu, Chojun Miyagi, Kanei Uechi, Tatsuo Shimabuku, Gogen Yamaguchi, Mas Oyama, ad nauseum, would totally disagree with you. Self preservation includes fighting in this instance.

Karate is more than fighting, but Budo that is not about the art of war, is not true and original intent. It's schoolboy karate.

That is what you do right? Day care karate? Whatever super sensei. That might have been the most arse showing comment I've ever seen on a forum. Let me "troll" on outta here now...






Ed Morris

Quote:

I think you read too little in the comment. The distinction I would make is defending ego vs defending your life.

you 'take it outside' and get into a fight, one on one, over an argument that started about who took who's barstool... to me, 'fight' implies 'battle of egos'. maybe thats how Victor meant it, numbnuts.






Butterflypalm

Quote:

I think Victor does have some explaining to do; Unyu may have over-reacted, but then that was too short and too categorical a statement not to have elicited such a response. Especially with that "ever" at the end.






Victor Smith

Quote:

Bryan,

No, karate is not for fighting, if it is used there should be no fight just completion.

The fighting mindset is you do this and I'll do that until I win. Unfortunately sparring has made many think this is how karate should be used.

Consider Hohen Soken's comments that Kusanku used to be practiced with the top knot pins (daggers) in each hand.

Training the body to take a shot to fight is nonsense when they may be trying to stick something small into you, and that is always the proper perspective if you need to use the art. End it not fight.

I consider anyone who trains to fight missing the entire point, and there are just as many classical quotes about not fighting from the seniors too. Wonder why?

Karate is for immediately ending, from my perspective.

Of course perhaps your karate is for fighting, if so cool, to each their own.






Butterflypalm

Quote:

Oh, I see. Karate is for 'ending the fight' and not 'fighting the fight'?

I am not double-quessing Unyu, but then he may say that while you are 'ending' the fight, some 'fighting' has to be done first?

Perhaps you are thinking about a variation of the 'one-punch-one-kill' to 'first-punch-first-kill'?




Victor Smith

Quote:


I believe it is much more than a case for semantics about what is happening.

Let me give you an example, one of Isshiryu's kata techniques looks like one technique (which I suspect few really nail each other with) but from a different direction of entry it is a neck breaking technique and is nothing but 100% use of the technique from kata.

I try really hard to work on everything we have and just use of that one application, IMO, is not fighting, its ending the situation, which btw is also the complete way to enter an attack by using the technique.

Of course I'm not looking to break necks, but if the situation is appropriate the technique is not fighting in my book, its ending the situation.

I see fighting as a mindset how to use karate's technique, see value in it, but also see much more.

In that light I take all the elder seniors admonisnments that karate isn't to be used for fighting as a serious contention.





Shall we continue?
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#367665 - 10/30/07 10:22 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
Bossman says it's not for fighting as well:

http://www.woma.tv/woma/videos/show/20/in/channel/159
_________________________
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www.SHIKON.COM
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#367666 - 10/30/07 11:25 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Gavin]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5823
Loc: USA
I think its largely a question of semantics.

Fun to talk about though!!!!!!!

I look foreward to reading the opinions/comments.
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#367667 - 10/30/07 11:48 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
hedkikr Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/28/05
Posts: 2827
Loc: Southern California, USA
BTW...(& this has always puzzeled me), how does one know that a certain technique designated as a "neck-break" will really break a neck? Who do you practice on?

The same goes for other "claims" (arm-break, shatter the knee, stop the heart, etc.) that seem reasonable but are untried, I'm certain. But it sounds really cool to students...ooooh!

There are so many variables involved w/ breaks, I doubt that it can be replicated just by practicing kata (& I'm a kata practitioner).

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#367668 - 10/30/07 11:52 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: hedkikr]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
I asked my teacher this. He said that the 'neck break' is only part of the body dynamics going on. I know it only took the slightest amount of pressure, while doing bunkai, to tear my shoulder, so I'll take his word on the neck breaks.

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#367669 - 10/30/07 11:57 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: cxt]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Yep,I read the whole other thread--and there were interesting posts woven into it. For that much, of late, I am grateful.

I am ambivalent since I see both sides and do agree with Chris about the idea of semantics clouding the issue. IMO, there are three considerations here: 1) the definition of fighting; 2) the utility of sparring (not necessarily sport-centric); and 3) if the "ender" that Victor has listed somehow doesn't quite work as planned.

Well if your coup de grace isn't as emphatic as expected due to whatever reason, is it then a fight? However we quickly wish to end an altercation, this sometimes may not happen according to our wants and then what recourse is there? And are the benefits of sparring then administered in that particular setting (if you don't want to call it a fight)?

P.S. As a quick edited comment, damn...Hedkikr beat me to that thought and stated it more succinctly.


Edited by butterfly (10/30/07 11:59 AM)

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#367670 - 10/30/07 12:00 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: harlan]
hedkikr Offline
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Registered: 02/28/05
Posts: 2827
Loc: Southern California, USA
And I had a climbing accident that didn't break my neck (although it felt like it). Ligaments & muscle tears have a different dynamic.

Again, blind faith or credible reports (maybe from someone in Special Forces who actually did it in wartime)?

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#367671 - 10/30/07 12:01 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: hedkikr]
ButterflyPalm Offline
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Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
In the days of hanging a criminal, death came when the neck was broken due to the sudden jerking force of the rope when the criminal fell through the trap-door.
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#367672 - 10/30/07 12:05 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: hedkikr]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
1. Last year an old tourist, ex-military, broke the neck of a would-be assailant in S. America. It's here somewhere.

2. Kata is not bunkai. Kata might be about faith, but bunkai tests it.

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#367673 - 10/30/07 12:11 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: harlan]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Harlan,

BTW, I am not doubting the abilities of your instructor, but in the heat of battle things sometimes do not go as planned. Also, let's say your instructor has a clone (or just picture two really competent MAists) with whom he is going at it. Could both be cognizant of the setups necessary to bring about the neck break/choke/kick/punch..etc. and be able to stymie or counter it?

That is also why I do not think karate (or any MA that is competently trained) is supposed to be entirely focused or use against untrained individuals. A karate-ka should be able to at least have some skill against the trained opponent/attacker and this will block a lot of what one thought would be more easily applicable.

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#367674 - 10/30/07 12:15 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: butterfly]
RazorFoot Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/01/04
Posts: 2064
Loc: Seated at the computer, DUH
I have a little difficulty with the statement because I do not feel many schools today actually teach a "one strike, one kill" philosopy or mindset. From my experience, it has been taught, "this is how you control the situation, eliminate the threat, and get to safety". The use of controlled techniques to de-escalate a situation to the point where you can retreat or escape harm through control of the opponent.

How can you be sure that any one technique or series of techniques will stop an opponent? There is no guarantee. And Victor, I truly respect your opinion and admire the extent of your knowledge having experienced it first hand but to me, a fight has begun when you have acknowledged that a confrontation is inevitable and you are, even if only in your mind, positioning yourself to deal with the confrontation. The confrontation should be swift and decisive but I would still have to call it a fight even if only one blow is struck.

Just my opinion.

Scottie
_________________________
"The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be."

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#367675 - 10/30/07 12:17 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: butterfly]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
As a noob, I tend to pay heed to sensei and sempai.

But my gut inclination is to understand 'karate' as 'not-fighting'. Not the 'one-punch, one-kill' that is touted, but definitely to see it as a 'stop action' kind of activity. 'Follow-ups' and 'set-ups' are beyond my understanding.

Quote:

but in the heat of battle things sometimes do not go as planned. Also, let's say your instructor has a clone (or just picture two really competent MAists) with whom he is going at it. Could both be cognizant of the setups necessary to bring about the neck break/choke/kick/punch..etc. and be able to stymie or counter it?

That is also why I do not think karate (or any MA that is competently trained) is supposed to be entirely focused or use against untrained individuals. A karate-ka should be able to at least have some skill against the trained opponent/attacker and this will block a lot of what one thought would be more easily applicable.



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#367676 - 10/30/07 12:24 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: hedkikr]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
Hedkikr,

Have I broken necks, arms or legs, no. Though long ago once holding some boards a fellow student broke my finger.

But for many years I've had a surgeon as part of my studnet group and he has gone into detail what occurs when such and such takes place. Of course whether the technique will fracture the atlas where it goes through the axis (I appologize if I'm mistating the anatomy - not my forte), or you end up with a really bad neck wrench is also possible.

But where I suggest one technique that both sets up the final response, I am not suggesting correct karate does not ignore variables and have back up alternatives.

Human structures are both stronger and weaker than we suppose, but in the technique I'm suggesting It does offer that alternative.

As for other breaks or dislocations, while we may use layman's shorthand for what might occur, that hardly precludes a good technique execution will probably cause a major owie (a technical term I do understand) and give purchase for other potential answers.

Of course you might always suggest that Ed show up some day and see if I know what I'm talking about, providing he has insurance. Doc always says he can fix anything, providing you insurance is good (just a joke of course).
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#367677 - 10/30/07 12:29 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: harlan]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Harlan,

It is good to ask and consider and of course accept what your instructor is saying. And believe me, you are doing well with this consideration. You are supposed to think about stopping an altercation, as Scottie just posted, as soon and as quickly as possible and with every means justifiable to the situation.

However, my concern is that all of us have plans of actions and sometimes these do not roll evenly and smoothly outward as expected. Just as emergency personnel have two or three back-up plans to consider in case the first doesn't work, well plan B and plan C...and plan D are options that have to be predicated on the fact that plan A is now in the toilet.

The idea, I think, is not to consider an attack or a fight something easily and quickly disposed of (hopefully so), but from which may need your attention to extricate yourself safely. And instead of blocks and setups, perhaps it is easier to consider it as what-if branches on a chart for plans of actions to quickly end or extricate yourself.

In that instance an understanding of "fighting" is necessary, I think.

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#367678 - 10/30/07 12:30 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: RazorFoot]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
Scottie,

I wasn't implying one punch kill philosophy. For that fact I don't know anyone who kills with their technique. Perhaps that potential exists in some instances but it's not one I pursue.

I see the utilization of the art (not bunkai but a larger answer) should be to conclude violence if things go in that direction. I don't advocate someone is nasty so 'break or dislocate their neck'. But I don't advocate working to fight someone either because I think that's the wrong focus.

Whether an outside observer sees something and then says that's a fight is not the issue, IMO. Instead it's how you're training to approach situations where violence must be ended.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#367679 - 10/30/07 12:41 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: butterfly]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
I suppose 'planning' is a skill that advanced 'fighters' attain. I train only in the moment. My thinking is that a move is whatever it needs to be.

Quote:

However, my concern is that all of us have plans of actions and sometimes these do not roll evenly and smoothly outward as expected. Just as emergency personnel have two or three back-up plans to consider in case the first doesn't work, well plan B and plan C...and plan D are options that have to be predicated on the fact that plan A is now in the toilet.




On reflection, I guess my noob understanding of karate is off. I don't think of it as 'fighting'. More like 'entering'.


Edited by harlan (10/30/07 12:52 PM)

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#367680 - 10/30/07 12:42 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Victor Smith]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Whether you engaged an enemy for two seconds or two minutes you were still fighting.
If you defend yourself, you do so by fighting.
If you put an end to whatever viloence that is occuring, you do so by fighting.
When you use karate, you are fighting.
Karate is fighting.

Am I a fighter? No. I am a karateka who can fight,if I have to.
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#367681 - 10/30/07 12:52 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Victor Smith]
RazorFoot Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/01/04
Posts: 2064
Loc: Seated at the computer, DUH
ANd Victor, I understand and have practiced and taught in that same manner myself. I am in the school of thought that Brad is in.

Brad Wrote:
Quote:

However, my concern is that all of us have plans of actions and sometimes these do not roll evenly and smoothly outward as expected. Just as emergency personnel have two or three back-up plans to consider in case the first doesn't work, well plan B and plan C...and plan D are options that have to be predicated on the fact that plan A is now in the toilet.




I understand the thought process that "karate is to end a conflict". I was simply saying that in my mind, if there is a conflict to end, there is a fight. Maybe I am not understanding a deeper meaning here but if there is an altercation, and a gun is used to end it, that is a fight that ended with a gunshot, but it was still a fight. Or am I over simplifying things?
_________________________
"The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be."

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#367682 - 10/30/07 12:54 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: RazorFoot]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
Perhaps the semantical difference between 'fight' and 'fighting'? Can one resolve a fight without fighting?

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#367683 - 10/30/07 12:54 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: harlan]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Harlan, you are essentially not wrong. The construction of technique at any particular moment means that you should be able to mold to the moment and change it depending upon the circumstances prevalent. This is the ideal, of course...and situations often vary.

This also means that if you threw a punch and it was blocked or didn't connect as well as you thought, are you in a position to readily and easily use technique 2 and 3 dependent upon how the opponent moves and attacks?

The idea is to smoothly transition to what needs to be done and not just count on finality at any given moment. That's also why there is a structure to technique that allows access to other techniques when properly administered. They are not just one point on a line disconnected from the next point onward. This is an organic process to fitting what you can do in response to your opponent...and this is also the reason why body mechanics behind techniques really need to be considered at a basic level.

On another note, per the semantics, I guess I probably have agree more with Brian. Fighting is fighting when there is an attacker and a defender, regardless of the situation or the intent.

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#367684 - 10/30/07 12:56 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: butterfly]
brocksampson Offline
Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 112
Loc: Savannah, GA
Butterfly,
As you pointed out, things never go as planned with a resisting second party. It is a matter of control. Once you have the initiative in the fight you don't let the other guy have a chance. Two equally trained MA guys would theoretically be better able to counter each others moves (in an ideal world) going back and forth until one either gets and maintains the advantage or it ends in a draw. This is essentially sparring and again, outside of the dojo, highly unlikely. Good techniques can be countered by anybody, trained or not. Your training will hopefully help you by having had similar experience and good habits.

I honestly do not consider self defense training to be focused on trained or untrained attackers as martial artists are really not special. I mean we all break the same way don't we? If you're going to train, then train for Mike Tyson right? I most likely won't stop to ask for credentials once the punches start flying! If he is a trained/experienced fighter that's all the more reason to take him down first, take him down hard, and run like hell!

The points you make are legit. These are some of the reasons that fighting is a hard way to get by in life. There's always another guy fighting back.

After reading some of the more recent posts I see that we are on the same page here and your question was hypothetical. I apologize if I'm off base with the above.


Edited by brocksampson (10/30/07 01:03 PM)
_________________________
The more I learn, the more everything is the same.

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#367685 - 10/30/07 12:56 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: butterfly]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
Butterfly: I think this is why Goju karate doesn't just focus on 'hit', 'stance' or 'block'. It also focuses on the 'in-between' stuff (that I don't have terms for).

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#367686 - 10/30/07 02:10 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: brocksampson]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Brock,

No apologies necessary. I actually believe that all the folk here are sharing the same basic ideals, but considering the view from slightly different vantages.

If we all agreed, then it would be a poor forum indeed.

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#367687 - 10/30/07 03:49 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: butterfly]
Joss Offline
Dragon

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 567
This discussion is pure semantics, depending on the definition of "fighting". As always, we leap into it, without spending the time to agree on what we're talking about.

Fighting, to me, involves a give and take contest between competitors; relying on skill, stamina, determination, strength, quickness.... all those commendable traits.

Karate, to me, involves not competitors, but an attacker and one who is unwilling to participate in a fight but must defend him or her self. It has the purpose of eliminating the contest, or the"give and take" and of neutralizing strength and stamina. Thus it functions to provide safety to the weaker, older, smaller or less fit.

It functions to prevent injury by quickly and decisively incapacitating the attacker at the very beginning. Even though this may be done with violence, I would not term this violence as a fight.

But then... say it does not go as it should and the two end up in a monumental struggle of survival. Now that's a fight. But it ain't karate.

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#367688 - 10/30/07 05:45 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Joss]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Quote:

This discussion is pure semantics, depending on the definition of "fighting". As always, we leap into it, without spending the time to agree on what we're talking about.





Please forgive us.

Quote:

Fighting, to me, involves a give and take contest between competitors; relying on skill, stamina, determination, strength, quickness.... all those commendable traits.

Karate, to me, involves not competitors, but an attacker and one who is unwilling to participate in a fight but must defend him or her self. It has the purpose of eliminating the contest, or the"give and take" and of neutralizing strength and stamina. Thus it functions to provide safety to the weaker, older, smaller or less fit.





A fight is a fight, whether you use karate or not. What's so hard to accept about that? That's not semantics, that's snobbery.

Quote:

It functions to prevent injury by quickly and decisively incapacitating the attacker at the very beginning. Even though this may be done with violence, I would not term this violence as a fight.





Sure, and it always goes just as planned in the dojo. There are just a bunch of uke's out there waiting to be instaneously incapacitated. It's a violent altercation where as we incapacitate people,but it's not a fight, it's karate. Sure, I buy that.

Quote:

But then... say it does not go as it should and the two end up in a monumental struggle of survival. Now that's a fight. But it ain't karate.




So, if it doesn't go as planned it is then a fight. Man, you should write webster and let him know the new use for the word fight.

Thanks for clearing that up.
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#367689 - 10/30/07 06:55 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
The problem with language generally is that certain words can have several meanings, depending on the context, intent and tone.

In the case of the word "fight" - it has several shades and gradations of meaning, one of which implies contention in battle or physical combat - which I assume is what people generally think of and refer to when they say "fight". The word "contend" itself implies a "struggle".

Here's a thought, take this sentence for example:
"We must struggle for freedom"

Isn't the absence of struggle, freedom itself?

Likewise:
"We must fight for peace"

Isn't the absence of conflict (a synonym for fight), peace?

Compare this with the etymology of the word "bu" (as in "budo") - which is to stop the spears. It doesn't mean fight, but implies doing something to stop the fighting (as in war).

Dontcha just lurve the English language?

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#367690 - 10/30/07 09:41 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: eyrie]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
I agree with you. which is why I don't disagree when someone says chooses to use the word either way. personally, I make a distinction between a 'duel', 'confrontation', 'showdown', etc vs. 'defense', 'elimination of threat', and 'disarmiment' (weaponless meaning of the word, with no pun intended ).

'subdue' is an interesting gray area, since you could subdue a threat or subdue an opponent in a competition. perhaps thats the same gray area that people are using 'fight' as equally interchangable.


mental images help sometimes - imagine the difference between a pistol duel at 10 paces vs. a free-for-all shootout at the O.K. coral. One has 'gentleman rules' the other is no holds barred. both have a kill or be killed intent; but why then isn't dueling pistols at 10 paces called a 'battle' and a shootout not called a 'duel'?

now think of the subtlties of training method with a person training for a duel vs. a person training for shootouts. lot's of overlapping skillsets there. acuracy, speed, etc. the main things separating the two are perhaps tactic, range and mindset.


surely there is a distinction. -is the way I think about it anyway. it's mostly semantics, but yeah, there is something else.


Quote:

Of course you might always suggest that Ed show up some day and see if I know what I'm talking about, providing he has insurance. Doc always says he can fix anything, providing you insurance is good (just a joke of course).


You want me to 'take one for the team' in the name of scientific discovery? uuuhhh...no thanks. my imagination is well enough to feel something drop me at 25% to know it would do more if it were 100%. providing I'm not just standing there letting you demonstrate that 25% of course....that doesn't count as a valid test. I'd have to be allowed to deliver my own 25%.

some things just won't work at 25% though. a simple one is someone applying an armbar at gradual 1/4 power, but the person resisting is resisting immediately at 100% - they can escape it. does that mean armbars are worthless? who says the 'training armbar' is the same as a viscious armbar? instead of applying gradual pressure until they tap, you could easily opt to make it one swift and full extended snap crackle pop. I'm not going to volunteer to such a test, my imagination does just fine in getting the point across as oppossed to having my arm pinned together healing for 6 months to get the lesson....and being reminded of the lesson every time it rains.

some level of imagination has to play a part of training...you have to imagine what damage something could reasonably do if it were with no mercy intent. it's possible for imaginations to go to far though or even letting imagination substitute altogether...and thats what Unyu coins as the term 'hope karate'. meaning, for instance, some train while thinking (hoping) they can deter any frontal attack with a chambered punch in horse stance without actually doing the noncompliant 2-person work to see if it's even reasonable.


karate is/isn't for <objective>. doesn't depend on the objective itself, it depends on how honest you train towards that objective. first step: stop bullsh!tting yourself. for me, karate hasn't made me an all-around better fighter - I'm guessing since I haven't trained karate for all ranges. at best, I think it's improved initial response of someone coming at me. I'm a short guy so if I haven't finished it then, I'm suppossing I'm a' gonner. someone 1.5x my size would take away 30 years of training in a heartbeat if I don't get the first advantage.

good or bad training, right or wrong mindset - thats my objective in the technical/tactical sense. but even more than that is the more tangible and testable gain of simply the enjoyment in learning a physical Art.

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#367691 - 10/30/07 09:51 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
brocksampson Offline
Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 112
Loc: Savannah, GA
Quote:


A fight is a fight, whether you use karate or not. What's so hard to accept about that? That's not semantics, that's snobbery.




Main Entry:
seˇmanˇtics
Pronunciation:
\si-&#712;man-tiks\
Function:
noun plural but singular or plural in construction
Date:
1893

1: the study of meanings: a: the historical and psychological study and the classification of changes in the signification of words or forms viewed as factors in linguistic development


Nope, it's semantics according to our friend Webster! So the discussion has come down to defining the meaning of the word "fight"? I'm afraid this thread has now lost it's potential.
_________________________
The more I learn, the more everything is the same.

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#367692 - 10/30/07 10:36 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
Joss Offline
Dragon

Registered: 01/18/06
Posts: 567
Quote:

Quote:

This discussion is pure semantics, depending on the definition of "fighting". As always, we leap into it, without spending the time to agree on what we're talking about.





Please forgive us.

Quote:

Fighting, to me, involves a give and take contest between competitors; relying on skill, stamina, determination, strength, quickness.... all those commendable traits.

Karate, to me, involves not competitors, but an attacker and one who is unwilling to participate in a fight but must defend him or her self. It has the purpose of eliminating the contest, or the"give and take" and of neutralizing strength and stamina. Thus it functions to provide safety to the weaker, older, smaller or less fit.





A fight is a fight, whether you use karate or not. What's so hard to accept about that? That's not semantics, that's snobbery.

Quote:

It functions to prevent injury by quickly and decisively incapacitating the attacker at the very beginning. Even though this may be done with violence, I would not term this violence as a fight.





Sure, and it always goes just as planned in the dojo. There are just a bunch of uke's out there waiting to be instaneously incapacitated. It's a violent altercation where as we incapacitate people,but it's not a fight, it's karate. Sure, I buy that.

Quote:

But then... say it does not go as it should and the two end up in a monumental struggle of survival. Now that's a fight. But it ain't karate.




So, if it doesn't go as planned it is then a fight. Man, you should write webster and let him know the new use for the word fight.

Thanks for clearing that up.







Ohhhh nooo. I sooowwwy nnoww Bwyyahn. I ahways agweee witchoo nowww Bwyaaan. Don't kwyyy Bwyyahn.

Feel better?

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#367693 - 10/30/07 11:08 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Joss]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Ok, you oficially hurt my feelings.

Sorry Joss, I'm having an argumentative day. I didn't mean it personal.

I guess it is just semantics.

Stupid semantics, stupid internet!!!
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The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#367694 - 10/31/07 12:35 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: eyrie]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
I really do believe we are all talking around the same considerations. It is semantics, but putting a name to something does give it a depth of understanding that otherwise wouldn't be there.

And as for "struggle"....who says freedom is without cost or that the natural state of things is not such random chaos that freedom has a negative connotation where anything is allowed and the strong are allowed reign over the weak?

Is "peace" the quelling of the masses under authoritarian rule? Peace may be the product of Hobbesian consideration where self-interest plays more a role than compassion for compassion's sake.

Sometimes struggle and fighting are the only routes to salvation where too much meakness does engender the focused violence of those who would take from you instead of give.

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#367695 - 10/31/07 12:46 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: butterfly]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
Ah the joys of language... I meant it in the Zen context...

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#367696 - 10/31/07 02:30 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: eyrie]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Sorry for misunderstanding. Call me a "zen"-ophobe.

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#367697 - 10/31/07 03:14 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
ButterflyPalm Offline
Enigma

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
When you say Joss has "Officially" hurt your feelings, did you mean:-

--- he did it 'in an official role', or,

--- he did it 'with official authorisation', or,

--- he did it 'formally' ?, or,

--- none of the above, and if so, what did you actually mean by "officially?"
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#367698 - 10/31/07 06:34 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: ButterflyPalm]
Shonuff Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 603
Loc: London, UK
Anyone ever seen the Jason Bourne movies?

When the lead character in those movies has a fight, every movement and technique he applies takes the shortest route to disabling the opponent.
Bourne is not setting up combinations or looking to wear the opponent down or create openings to make a single hit before figuring out the next shot as a ring fighter would do. When an opponent is not on Bournes level they attack and they are disabled/dead within one or two movements (maybe 3 if theres more than one person to deal with). More skilled opponents take more work but the same intent is present in the movements.

I think Victor is talking about the difference in mentality between:
a) squaring up to the opponent with a fighting gaurd, circling, testing with a jab or two before throwing a striking combination to work into an opening etc etc
as opposed to:
b) moving in straight to destroy/disable an attacking adversary as quickly as possible.

I think most martial artists tend to practice both, but I beleive that the two methods/mentalities are mutually exclusive because they intertfere with one another too much. Sparring trains us in method a), most movement or conditioning or sparring drills also train us in a). Method b) is primarily trained through one step attack and defence drills. The mentality of fighting/sparring is usually less direct, more cautious and ultimately less controlling, all of which counters the other methods drive to finish with the conflict.

I think some arts were clearly designed for fighting in this sense. I feel most southern kungfu styles and their derivatives were created with this in mind as they evolved after the culture of self defence had become more prevalent and so they began to focus on how to beat a trained opponent which brings in more of the skills associated with ring craft that were just not relevant before. Fighting in this sense is actually an evolution of the more fundamental self preservation philosophy held in method b).
This difference in mentallity is, in my view, why so many of the techniques of the ring such as jabs are so sparse in much of Karate's kata, and where practices such as the much derided traditional ippon and sanbon kumite descend from, i.e. in real fights where someone is out to kill or break you they do tend to throw all their weight into their attacks and really have no concern for their own balance or gaurd etc, which is what I see the oizuki as symbolising in those drills...

But I digress.


Edited by Shonuff (10/31/07 06:40 AM)
_________________________
It's Shotokan not Shoto-can't!!!

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#367699 - 10/31/07 06:53 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Shonuff]
jude33 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 1539
I think the definition of fighting is to broad and to complexed to make a comment. It would be helpfull if the definition in this case was made. I think

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#367700 - 10/31/07 08:13 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Shonuff]
ButterflyPalm Offline
Enigma

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
So, what you are saying is, as Victor sees it, (a) is "fighting" and (b) is "not fighting"?
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#367701 - 10/31/07 08:59 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: ButterflyPalm]
Shonuff Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 603
Loc: London, UK
Pretty much.

I think Victor's point was to hold up the distinction between the two mentalities in relation to the use of karate. Discussing these approaches might be more useful than quibbling over personal definitions of the term fighting.

Then again I could be mistaken and Victor may mean something entirely different.
_________________________
It's Shotokan not Shoto-can't!!!

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#367702 - 10/31/07 09:23 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: ButterflyPalm]
Blackrainbow Offline
Dragon

Registered: 09/14/06
Posts: 220
Loc: Brandon Fl.USA
I don't believe that anyone is ever going to be able to define "fighting" in a context that is going to satisfy such a diverse group as we have here. Our opinions are going to be formed based on life experience, training, the reason why we train in MA, style, and I could go on forever. Get two people together in a quiet room. Say two ex U.S. Marines. One guy is a WW 2 vet who fought at Guadalcanal or Iwo Jima. The other guy served 4 years as a cook in the kitchen. They are both marines. Same exact training. Now, ask them both to define the essence of survival in a combat situation. We are all martial artist but we come from so many different styles each with a historical background that defines part of our training. Then there is the actual way that we train. Then throw in life experience and you have a mix that makes a simple defination of so simple a word as "fight" almost impossible. But I loved reading the opinions.
_________________________
You cannot defend against that which you do not understand

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#367703 - 10/31/07 10:00 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: ButterflyPalm]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Quote:

When you say Joss has "Officially" hurt your feelings, did you mean:-

--- he did it 'in an official role', or,

--- he did it 'with official authorisation', or,

--- he did it 'formally' ?, or,

--- none of the above, and if so, what did you actually mean by "officially?"






I know, but right now I'd rather concede than p!ss people off.
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#367704 - 10/31/07 12:03 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
jude33 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 1539
Quote:

Quote:

When you say Joss has "Officially" hurt your feelings, did you mean:-

--- he did it 'in an official role', or,

--- he did it 'with official authorisation', or,

--- he did it 'formally' ?, or,

--- none of the above, and if so, what did you actually mean by "officially?"






I know, but right now I'd rather concede than p!ss people off.




I think I can see your valid point on you deciding to concede about this subject.

Jude

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#367705 - 10/31/07 12:06 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: ButterflyPalm]
jude33 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 1539
Quote:

So, what you are saying is, as Victor sees it, (a) is "fighting" and (b) is "not fighting"?




I dont know. Maybe if someone asked Victor what he meant? Otherwise a lot of this discussion seems to be going around in circles.

Jude

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#367706 - 10/31/07 12:50 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: jude33]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

When you say Joss has "Officially" hurt your feelings, did you mean:-

--- he did it 'in an official role', or,

--- he did it 'with official authorisation', or,

--- he did it 'formally' ?, or,

--- none of the above, and if so, what did you actually mean by "officially?"






I know, but right now I'd rather concede than p!ss people off.




I think I can see your valid point on you deciding to concede about this subject.

Jude




For someone who doesn't like to argue you sure do it alot! I'll bet you just can't stand yourself. PooPoo head.
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#367707 - 10/31/07 01:23 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Shonuff]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
Hi David,

I think you've summed up my point correctly;

"I think Victor is talking about the difference in mentality between:
a) squaring up to the opponent with a fighting gaurd, circling, testing with a jab or two before throwing a striking combination to work into an opening etc etc
as opposed to:
b) moving in straight to destroy/disable an attacking adversary as quickly as possible."

This does not mean I'm against using a) as a tool but not the end focus of my art.

It does tend to come down to how we define the term fighting after all.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#367708 - 10/31/07 01:37 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
jude33 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 1539
Quote:




I think I can see your valid point on you deciding to concede about this subject.

Jude




For someone who doesn't like to argue you sure do it alot! I'll bet you just can't stand yourself. PooPoo head.





I said I avoid personal conflicts. Arguments done correctly can be informative. Arguments over silly things I dont tend to bother with.

Hows the judo?

Jude

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#367709 - 10/31/07 03:12 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: jude33]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Quote:

Hows the judo?





The Judo is really cool!! I wish our sensei thought we as a group are going to be ready for the tournament in January, but he wants us to have six months in it first.

Re: Karate = fighting.

I can see most sides of the arguement and I still stand by my statements that using karate to stop,injure, prevent whatever,etc in whatever context is fighting.
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#367710 - 10/31/07 07:46 PM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: BrianS]
Neko456 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 3260
Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA
What I will agree with that Karate is not all you need to MMA fight the same could be said of Judo or Jujitsu.

As for Karate not for fighting tell that to the older, bigger and stronger guys that use to kick my a$$ at will within 2-3 years of Karate training changed to the otherside of street and gave me respect. Karate is for self defense which equals a fight. Quick brutal and no rules. Everybody purpose for studying was and is different, in the high violent environment I once lived in. It cleaned some clocks = fighting.

If its not for effective fighting, I aplogized I used it wrong. My Bad. This was years ago maybe things are different now?



Edited by Neko456 (10/31/07 07:51 PM)
_________________________
DBAckerson

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#367711 - 11/14/07 11:31 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Neko456]
Cafa Offline
Newbie

Registered: 11/14/07
Posts: 11
Hi guys, here's my opinion as an ex thai boxer, ex bouncer, and current Shotokan student (loving it), age 26.

First of all, blocks. The concept is an illusion, it's almost impossible to block a punch, especially against a wicked opponent who can throw punches at different speeds and with/without a delay in some part of the movement. In my best days I was able to throw 8 punches (left right left right...) in 1 second. Who can react 8 times per second? And there's no time whatsoever to do a block. Anyone trying to use blocks in the street will go down very fast. Even against a guy who has no MA training but has experience in fighting.

However, if you mentally prepare yourself, know your opponent is right handed, and you're 99% sure his first strike will be a right hand punch, then you can block and win in a second.

Second, it's also next to impossible to kick someone in the head. It can be done, but with a couple of solid moves to prepare the opponent. If you want to kick a guy in the head, you need to have a perfect instinct - something which you were or were not born with but even if you were, you need to train it before you can use it at all. And you can't do that in kata or in controlled sparring.

Chambering the rear fist...is a perfect way to change the previous paragraph and get kicked in the head.

Street fighting is brutal. No matter how many flying jump roundhouse shots you can do, if you're not a man who's willing to take some punishment, you're down. My point is, karate doesn't teach you to be brutal, not even kyokushin, and mostly you develop an illusion "I can't get hit there, this won't happen, that won't happen". Yes it will. The guy will bite your hand if he sees a chance. No matter how perfect your stance is.

I realised, when sparring against a karateka, it only takes a bit of wit to keep him off balance. Instead of trying to block, move away. Instead of having linear movement (Shotokan), circle around. Strike and move to the side.

As someone said, we're not in some apocalyptic scenario and we're not gladiators. You end up having civilians who can perform certain moves. And the fights are won by brutality, wit and most of all - luck. And karate has a concept that nothing is luck, you "can" control everything. No, you can't.

What I'm really trying to say is - karate techniques are just a weapon. They don't mean a thing if you're not a fighter. But if you are, then your fighting ability will increase. As long as you don't try to block...

So, there's a good point behind developing one's character in karate. That's what matters and that's what makes you a confident guy. Most potential fights can be resolved by posture alone.

And if you already got into a fight, pretend you're weak and sick and then strike full power...with a kiai

Maybe some of my arguments seem contradictory, but that's the way it is. The truth doesn't exist, the world is not black and white, tiny pieces of the truth is all we have. So there's not a definite answer on this subject.

Except that fighting is in your mind. It's an intellectual and a creative effort. So it doesn't really matter which techniques you use, you just need to be able to follow what your mind tells you. I mean, if you know it's logical to grab the guy by his neck but your training routines stop you from doing that, then you've just made an error, and you'll probably pay for it.

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#367712 - 11/15/07 06:54 AM Re: Karate IS (not for fighting?) [Re: Cafa]
CVV Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Belgium
Cafa,

The mental aspects, as you say, are very important in a confrontation. I agree to almost anything you say. But mental awareness is enhanced through confidence and ability. Wich comes from training and experience. An another important factor is fear.

On behalve of the non-block theory, as an ex thai boxer, would you not block a high kick to the temple or low kick ?
I consider holding your guard and have techniques land on your guard also blocking.
Because what would be the alternative if you cannot move away ? Only 'be faster' or clinch ?

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