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#435218 - 05/27/12 12:09 AM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: colman fink]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
Hello Colman

What you are describing is true. Its fighting. I think the point trying to be made was that the sparring should be harder than that of competition arts, to reach efficiency in self defense at a quicker rate of study. The techniques you describe are indeed "full contact" but those things cant be practiced in a sparring match.

If the purpose of your sparring is to gauge the ability to defend yourself, then you must be able to go hard, at all ranges, with techniques that you can use safely against a resisting partner.
If you can do that effectively then its likely that you wont have to resort to eye gouging or hair pulling. (Neither of which have ever proven to be very effective.)

As for the knife reference,any weapon escalates the danger, for all parties involved. With that said, A skilled knife fighter isnt going to let you see the blade until you feel it, and he certainly isnt going to have to fully extend his arm as in the illustrations.
In fact he is going to try not to do that, in most cases.

As for the rest of your post, I agree. TMA has plenty to offer as means to self defense and many good things can be learned from them. Also,its almost always about the artist,not the art.

With that said,I have to reiterate whats already been said and thats if your school is geared more towards competition then you may want to train elsewhere if selfdefense is your primary concern.

"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

#435228 - 05/27/12 10:34 AM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: Chen Zen]
Matakiant Offline

Registered: 02/08/11
Posts: 126
Of course weapons must be trained with! It offers insight into body mechanics and necessary knowledge you must have as a martial artist. But if the question is in unarmed attacks then the form should correspond to it and if you wanted to stick a weapon in any of those pictures the forms would still be wrong.


I'd like to see the guy who can stick 2 fingers in my eyes in a full paced street fight - if he could he could probably just knock me out flat anyway.

I'm just mentioning this because often you'll get those TMA mostly Karate guys who say this stuff about how they would poke eys, grab/kick groins in a real fight and so on.

The truth of the matter is somewhere in between this murky swamp that has been born out of fiction, business and fake mysticism.

You need modern training methods you also need spirit in the traditional sense and respect for your art - those things are actually there in full contact competitive sports but again self defense is different than a ring fight.

In the real world there is only 1 round with no time limit no referee no points no rules and no protective equipment. You also do not know the situation like you know a ''fight'' ahead; i.e like a pro boxer, MMA fighter, kickboxer etc has time to reserach his opponent and make preparations (not always but 99.99% the case in pro circuits)

So it's natural that you can never get the real thing training - we can't brutalize our students; it's not sane or legal and most of all it isn't effective in the long run.

What the ring teaches you is technical skills and PRESSURE this is the most important aspect of training there has to be some kind of mental pressure because the adrenaline you get hit with in a real situation can numb you easily.

''Kihon'', ''Kata'' don't offer these things in reality. Technique is hollow if it isn't tested! And hollow technique isn't technique at all.

Strong technique - the only good technique.

I know I'll bring the holy wrath upon myself here so let me elaborate my perspective... What kihon or kata may offer is theory truly and that is actually not for beginners but for intermediate-advanced students who are far enough that they can work out what works best for their body - there is no universal blueprint that fits every person of every age and bodybuild for throwing any kind of technique.

But then again I'll flat out say I don't believe you can develop a technique that involves using your limb to hit someone without actually hitting something. So striking the air doesn't really teach you anything usually it ends up teaching bad form.

Speed, power, flow, courage! These are the things that make a fighter be it in the ring or protecting himself on the street.

Speed to deliver your techniques. Power to make them count. Flow to keep 'em coming and most important the courage to use them.

All of your technique is useless if you can't deliver it. I'm sure we've all read/heard the stories where experienced practitioners we're struck down on the street by muggers or even single assailants doing the exact thing the practitioner had been practicing to beat for years maybe even decades.

Courage = confidence. True confidence is built through experience - hard practice hard spars and lots of sweat. It's when you know that what you have is real that you really acquire confidence.

Throwing punches in the air. Doing weird forms of ridiculous kumite or just practicing kata with the belief that it will make you capable of ''fighting'' may make someone seemingly confident but that confidence is like a house with a foundation made from match sticks - in truth it's naive arrogance resulting from unknowing the truth of the matter - something a true teacher is supposed to make sure doesn't happen.

And this is how we have men who practice a TMA for 5, 10 maybe 20 years who sometimes come to a realization that in reality they don't really know a thing about MARTIAL ART other than MARTIAL ACROBATICs that fit their own style.

I'm off on a huge rant here... But yeah...

It's fairly simple if it doesn't offer full contact it doesn't offer true martial training.

And if it claims that their full contact is so deadly it can't be practiced then it's a piece of crap McDojo and you need to get the hell out of there.

#435231 - 05/27/12 11:29 AM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: Matakiant]
iaibear Offline

Registered: 08/24/05
Posts: 1304
Loc: upstate New York
My worthless two cents follows:
My first six years in Aikido was drilling the "test" moves. Over two dozen attack defenses in pure muscle memory. Attack me in a way done in the "kata" and Aikido happened. My only personal input was to control deadly force.

#435235 - 05/27/12 08:01 PM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: iaibear]
colman fink Offline

Registered: 04/05/12
Posts: 20
Loc: Massachusetts, USA
Nice to see everyoneís different perspective. From my perspective, I was following up on Dobbersky's statement "Have you ever been attacked this way in "real" situations etc?".

Concerning eye gouging, I was merely trying to point out that these things are not allowed in competition and can be useful in the street. The correct way to use this is if for example someone grabs you in a front bear hug, to slide your hands up his face and with your thumbs feel your way into the eyes sockets. The idea is to create enough of a distraction to get out of bear hug. Seriously I donít know anyone who believes that poking your fingers in someoneís eyes in a full frontal attack actually works as the eye is such a small target.

Forced to grow up on the outskirts of the ghettos (called townships) in South Africa during the Apartheid era, I've seen enough fights and actually got involved in a couple. All I can say is not to expect trained moves ... expect the unexpected and sometimes the awkward ones are the most dangerous. Looking back, getting involved was really stupid on my part because I could have really got seriously hurt. Anyway in many of these fights, anything went and a lot of times any weapon that was handy was used such as knives, sticks, bricks/stones, etc. Usually it happens like this: men get paid on Fridays, they buy booze, got drunk, then fight over women and/or money ... all because they lived in such depraved conditions.

As Iíve said in my post, kihon or kata are training tools to help build speed, agility, coordination and power. Most serious TMA folks understand that and donít believe one really fights like that. Iíve never seen Latoya Machida fight with the moves like he is doing in this kata Sochin but Iím guessing that he does practice some kata once in a while. It is how one trains oneís kumite that becomes important especially with the use of weapons. A natural outcome of that thinking is Krav Maga or Systema.

Regarding unarmed combat, training in MMA is probably the best way today to make you the best unarmed fighter but where there are rules, there are limitations. If I was younger, I probably would be cross-training in MMA if it was around then, but frankly at 60 next year, I donít think I should be getting into the ring.

Anyhow my main point is to think of weapon first by the attacker and anything goes in any confrontation. If there is a weapon involved, then youíve allowed to it go too far then you better do him in first before he does you in. It is better and so much harder to apologize in the beginning and walk away.
Yuishinkai Kobujutsu USA -
Martial Arts with Colman -

#435236 - 05/27/12 08:57 PM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: Matakiant]
choonbee Offline

Registered: 02/26/11
Posts: 195
Originally Posted By: Matakiant
What the ring teaches you is technical skills and PRESSURE this is the most important aspect of training there has to be some kind of mental pressure because the adrenaline you get hit with in a real situation can numb you easily.
But then again I'll flat out say I don't believe you can develop a technique that involves using your limb to hit someone without actually hitting something. So striking the air doesn't really teach you anything usually it ends up teaching bad form.
Throwing punches in the air. Doing weird forms of ridiculous kumite or just practicing kata with the belief that it will make you capable of ''fighting'' may make someone seemingly confident but that confidence is like a house with a foundation made from match sticks

Insert profound martial arts quotes or tough guy phrases here.

#435237 - 05/27/12 09:03 PM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: colman fink]
Zach_Zinn Offline

Registered: 12/09/07
Posts: 1031
Loc: Olympia, WA
One thing to think about here, if we can define what is unrealistic about this attack, we can figure out whether there was ever anything here to begin with, or whether it's just nonsense altogether, with no redeeming value.

What is unrealistic about it ot me is the deep stance, the 'chambered' hand, and the staccato timing. Someone simply stepping in from a hands down position and trying to hit you with their lead leg is not nearly as ridiculous, nor is someone entering in by grabbing you with the lead hand, with the other hand cocked back. - which is the whole point of the chambered hand in single attack kumite, all your actions have to take into account the second attack coming from the cocked hand, eventually you work against two attacks, continous attacks etc.. and the point is for your first movement to help you gain time. It's not meant to be free kumite, it's meant to isolate the moment where you can move to gain initiative.

Keep in mind that the whole point of practicing against single attacks is to kind of freeze a point in time, so by nature you are practicing with some artificial timing, to make this kind of training valuable you have to move with actual intent and commitment, and the training is no good if you don't, or if you don't understand what it is, and isn't meant to do.

I don't like the way ippon kumite is normally done either, Japanese and Korean styles are some of the worst offenders, no offense to anyone..

The worst is when people start from so far away, and even kiai before they move!

Looking at the postures themselves, IMO dismmissing them outright is also missing on some fundamental training IMO, if you "real" them up, they are just's the stylized, ritualized nature of the way they are normally presented that is a problem, not the positions themselves. Like alot of things it;s just another example of where someone's silly demo became an actual practice method.

Naturally this is just talking about a limited form of training for a specfic purpose, and like anything if youa re doing it to look a certain way instead of help build a certain skill it's going to be worthless. Somewhere along the line most mainstream Karate lost the plot with ippon kumite..but there are people out there doing something more useful with it.

Edited by Zach_Zinn (05/27/12 09:09 PM)

#435239 - 05/28/12 06:38 AM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: Dobbersky]
duanew Offline

Registered: 06/28/08
Posts: 326
Loc: MN

I wonder to myself many times why do traditional arts or those claiming to be "real" martial arts STILL use the following attacks in the Dojo to train their students? In all my years I have never been attacked this way and neither have any of my students. Have you ever been attacked this way in "real" situations etc?

Because you teach what you know.

#435240 - 05/28/12 07:09 AM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: duanew]
duanew Offline

Registered: 06/28/08
Posts: 326
Loc: MN
Here is how I tell between self defense and sport mindsets-
1. When possible get out of the way of the attack,move behind the opponent and finish the fight.
2.Train to finish the fight in 30 seconds or less.
3. If you are caught on the inside, attack the attack, and fight your way behind the opponent. See #1
I learned this in my kata and my bunkai. Traditional Okinawan karate for 30+ years, cop for 20+ years and it has worked just fine against opponents who outweighed me by over 100 pounds. One guy 6'9, 350 pounds found that a traditionally conditioned shin against an unconditioned shin means you fall down and go to jail.
Sport doesn't translate well on the street because you are trained to fight by the wrong set of rules. Are you writing from experience or theory?
"The person with experience is never at the mercy of the person with a theory."


#435247 - 05/29/12 12:23 PM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: duanew]
Dobbersky Offline
Peace Works!!!!

Registered: 03/13/06
Posts: 921
Loc: Manchester United Kingdom
Thank you all for some really excellent responses, Its enough for any reading this post to maek a formal decision on ones own training.

TMA does have a lot going for it, it uses the best resources in confined spaces of the DOJO with the vast array of students but one must realise that although Kata and Kihon should be practiced as close to the original as psossble, NOTHING says you can not adapt it to any situation
A man is but the product of his thoughts what he thinks, he becomes.


#436163 - 01/30/14 07:56 AM Re: Self Defence attacks! [Re: Dobbersky]

Registered: 01/17/14
Posts: 12
Loc: Perth Australia
This question is like asking how many street fights start by 2 people squaring up and having someone wave their hand between them and shouting "lets get it on". Punching and retracting the hand back to the hip is done during the basics and the patterns but not for sparring or in a real self defence situation.

There are many reasons for bringing the punching fist back to the hip. Some of the reasons I can think of:

1) Elbowing a rear opponent. For this one to work the 2nd opponent would have to be practically up against you.

2) Simplicity - one of the 1st things you learn when you begin Taekwondo is the horse riding stance mid section punch, when doing 2 punches like this (with the non-punching hand returning to the hip) both punches are exactly the same. When you do them in a forward stance or a back stance or from a guarding block one is more powerful than the other so it is easier to learn and to get the twist of the wrist right from the horse riding stance. Also if you are doing it for one technique simplicity demands you do it for all of them.

3) Hip involvement - goes back to point 2, most of the power in any single hand technique comes from twisting the hips so bringing the punching hand back to the hip puts it into the position for the next punch which starts at the point of rotation.

4) Retracting the striking hand - If your hand can retract your hand back to the hip as fast as you can finish your punch then you can retract your hand to avoid it getting grabbed as fast as you can punch. Going back to point 3 it also helps to improve your hip rotation with the push-pull action.

5) Speed - Because coming from the hip you have to move your hand further to get to the target than if you were punching from a guarding block. If you want to punch a target faster (get there in less time) you will have to punch faster from the hip so if you can punch fast from the hip how fast can you punch from the guarding position?

6) Grabbing something - Sometimes the retracting hand can be the result of grabbing your opponent and pulling them in to increase the power you hit them with, to make it harder for them to defend against it or to bring them closer to you. There are some movements in the Chang Hon patterns that do this, although not just to the hip such as the grab-chop in Won Hyo or the double elbow in Po Eun which could either be 2 elbows to 2 different opponents or grabbing with one hand, pulling them in and hitting them with the other.

I am sure there will be some that disagree and/or have other ideas but there you are.

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