Martial Arts is like trying to figure out a scientific equation. It takes much trial and error, using the best available information and hypothesis available. Honestly, given my martial past I feel like I progressed on my own more than I did with training. The reason why is because when a person has little or no imformation on a given subject its easy for outsiders with some information or the appearance of knowledge to influence them. This is dangerous because the person dispensing the knowledge may or may not possess information of value.
I left the dojo about ten years ago now, left the forms, the point sparring, the flowery movements and the competitions and instead i gathered a group of martial artists that I respected as fighters and thinkers and I worked with them Taking ideas from various systems. My training went from 90 percent forms and 1-3 step sparring to 90 percent sparring, drilling certain movements and testing ideas against progressive resistance. Then I read the Tao, learned much about economy of motion and centerline concepts. Then I retrained myself. I stripped down everything i knew, and kept only a handfull of techniques, roughly twenty in total perhaps more I havent counted but its a small percentage of what I use to practice and I feel like Im lightyears more effective than I was then. I plan to reenter a school now, headed by Juan Mott a former PRIDE champ. This is more for testing my abilities against a group of ranked fighters that it is for educational purposes however, I hope and plan to learn some things from the experience, otherwise it will end as quickly as it started and I'll be back to my usual training.
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."