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PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2013 7:56 pm 
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While it is true that, as in all things, the conception of Uechi Ryu is different in many people, practitioners, and organizations at large_ one of the more baffling thing is the denial or misconstruing of the _ moving off the line of force concept_ in our style…something that is intrinsic to our system's forms to begin with.

And this does not mean that at times the best response is to enter and short stop the attack if tactically feasible, depending upon the type and perceived strength of the opponent and the particular attack.

To understand this concept…we must first ingrain the concept that it is a natural instinct to get out of harms way.

I keep bringing up the body alarm reactions of any given moment, by the adrenaline factor.

Are your techniques always appropriate as you originally learn them?

That will always depend on your situation and how quickly you detect the threat, how your decision making process allows you to deal with that threat, based on how fear/shock, affects your ability to deal with that threat, with possibly the exception that any technique which follows natural instinct can only up your odds in surviving such an encounter.

Can it be a detriment? I'm sure doing anything, to include doing nothing, could be a detriment, but at least this concept might well increase your odds in not getting killed, or at least be overtaken by the assailant's momentum or brute strength.

I think it's simply a way to acknowledge that the normal response to danger is to move away from it and training yourself to deal with it.

Everybody it seems has a way of advertising how good their interpretation of our style is, how what they teach is above all others for whatever reason…but the best instructors I have seen are the ones that have a habit of repeatedly addressing the difference between what you think you're training for and what you're actually going to do.

It's a very natural ingrained reflex to get away from lethal danger. Contrary to popular belief, most untrained people do not stand still when being attacked. They move. Incorporating that natural response into your planned response might be a smart idea, then.

When you think of it, not only is it important to move, it is also important to move in such a direction that you can maximize your position for your next set of action.

Being in a serious ambush/attack facing overwhelming odds and underwhelming options tends to kickstart your primordial survival instincts to get the hell out of there. You naturally want to get off the X, and fight from Y, keeping going to Z and never look back.


What may be unnatural and thus requires training, is combining the "flight" with "fight"_

Then there will be times when you can't get off the X. You have to learn to live on it as well.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 12:34 am 
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Excellent post Van and stated very well.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 1:33 am 
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I think that if you clearly define the principles you work with then all things become easy to determine.

I do not believe in going force on force.

I believe in going force onto weakness.

Therefore getting off the line of attack is a given.

Even when entering to stop short an attack it does not have to be done force on force. I love watching Jim Maloney enter – it is not as straight on as some might see it but rather it is always coming in on a slight or not so slight angle. It is not force on force but into a weak point.

Force on force is a common flaw and part of the monkey dance.

The next common flaw is to begin to move off the line of attack only to engage rather than continue to move around it.

I like the way Rory Miller presents the concept that ever move you make should have the goal of achieving the “Golden Move.”

The Golden Move achieves three effects in one movement. These are (my wording as I forgot to write Rory’s down for some reason): do damage, destroy their structure and achieve a strategic position.

If you want to perform the Golden Move from wherever you are then the rest is just problem solving.

BUT you need a set of principles to work from.

 I believe in getting off the line of attack.

 I do not go force on force, I go force on weakness.

 I move my centre.

 I take the Joint Mass Centre.

 I use the Six Harmonies.

 I use Yin and Yang.

 I use gravitational alignment.

 Etc.

 I seek the Golden Move on every movement. Now reality may play havoc with me achieving the Golden Move but that does not stop me trying.

Rory was asked in the seminar why so many of the combative systems or the close quarters systems all kind of look the same in application.

Rory’s response was that when everything sloughs off there are only a few right ways to do things. Lots of wrong ways but there are just a few right ways.

I believe that if you understand the goal you want. You can set strategy which for me is the principles under which I want to operate. From the strategies you will end up with only the right tactics.

Goal = Strategy = Tactics -- achieves the desired effect.

I also believe that Distance = Time = Opportunity.

The greater distance you have the greater the time you have and therefore the more opportunity you have to respond.

1. Therefore the more time you have the more opportunity you have to respond with a “trained response.”

Less time gives you less opportunity to respond.

2. Therefore with less time you have to have good “conditioned reflexes.”

Take more time away and you take away more opportunities.

3. Therefore with the least time (that still allows a response) you will respond with “instinctive reactions.”

When we look at true assaults the aggressor wants to give you no time to respond at all, so logically then we begin the review of our training by looking at our instinctive reactions. This thread has gone over types of instinctive reactions.

Instinctive reactions are fine if they serve our purpose.

Throwing the hands up to protect the face is an even better reaction if it points an elbow at the incoming aggressor.

So improving on those instinctive reactions we have to look at how close our conditioned reflexes align to our instinctive reactions. (Pointing the elbow at the incoming aggressor is a conditioned reflex.)

If our desired conditioned reflexes are too different from our instinctive reaction the chances of fine tuning and moving instinctive reactions into conditioned reflexes drops drastically.

From there we look at our trained responses and how close they are aligned to our conditioned reflexes.
The closer the alignment from our trained responses to our conditioned reflexes to our instinctive reactions the closer our training is to preparing for reality even when training trained responses. And trained responses are good when we can pull them off.

If our trained responses are too different from our desired conditioned reflexes then the chances of doing them with less time diminishes.

While all of this thrown out there sounds complex it really isn’t.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 2:24 am 
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Van Canna wrote:
Then there will be times when you can't get off the X. You have to learn to live on it as well.


What exactly is the 'X' to which you are referring? Is it the line of attack?

Last year, one of the black belts observed me trying to block leg kicks during sparring with my arm (using Gedan Barai). He told me that I would break my arm doing that and that it was best to just absorb the kicks early in one's training. He said that with some experience I could start checking leg kicks by raising my knee, which is what I try to do now but I often don't react fast enough. He said that the final stage of development would be the ability to anticipate those kicks and use evasive footwork to get out of the way or lessen their impact.


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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 3:06 am 
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I don't know much about styles. :? I'm no expert, I hate terminology it causes wars, what I do is travel down the limb. Inside or outside don't care as long as I enter and apply contact or control. Pretty much see strikes as entries. No not saying I can enter all strikes, just saying that's where I want to go. I kind of just keep working in. Until their is nothing left to work with. Don't know the Japanese name for that.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 5:35 am 
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Examples of moving off the X or line of attack are seen in these Enshin karate clips.

Mark…think of the X as your last known address where the opponent's techniques are being dispatched to be received. What you do is move to a different address before the 'goods' arrive.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-aV5SnnENM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n_-zSamk6WQ

I see those as moves in between our kata 'moves' and have used them in taking down opponents during tournaments. George might remember when I took down 'Baby Huey'[because he was so big]…_the student of Ed Daniels [the king kong of karate]_that I fought in Rhode Island in one of Pesare's tourneys.

Every good fighter knows how to move off the X to flank the opponent and counter from his blind spot, forcing the opponent to 'reset' his 'ooda loop'[observe, orient, decide, and act]…

And as Rick wrote about Jim Maloney, I also teach movement and Blading, combined with straight entries, when straight entries are necessary. In fact, Maloney was at our dojo few weeks ago, and we went over this in class for two hours.

Straight, short stop entries can be tricky if you are facing a very big, burly, tall opponent…think using an entry into someone like Andre Tippet, NFL hall of fame.

And Mark…the black belt is correct that you would break your arm trying to 'block' a power front kick with a gedan barai, because the ulna of your forearm will fracture.

Also trying to 'block' low shin round house kicks aimed at the legs, inside or out, with your rising your legs, is fraught with danger when receiving 'killer kicks' _

In our dojo I have some very powerful black belts well over two hundred pounds, two of which are former heavy weight boxers.

I show the need to get off the line of attack, by placing a heavy bag on the floor resting against a student's side of the leg and then I have the powerful black belts kick the bag full force. Those shots move both the bag and the person sideways upon impact.

The shins of all my students are extremely well conditioned as well.

Then I ask the student who was holding the bag to throw away the bag and take the same power kicks by staying in place and raising his leg to intercept or block.

Nobody volunteers for this. They then apply themselves fully into the 'reading' of incoming shots and move off line pretty much as you see in the above clips.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 3:24 pm 
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One person attacks and the other responds by "standing his ground," blocking the attack (knocking it out of the way) and counter attacking from the same place.

NOT the most intelligent way to defend, though necessary at times.

It pays to understand what's involved when you are about to receive blows to your body, conditioning notwithstanding. Your body has a centerline.

The centerline runs from the top-center of your head, straight-down your body, equally bisecting it.

The centerline is significant because most of your vital targets--face, throat, solar plexus, and genitals--fall along the centerline.

The centerline is the core of you, the vulnerable, solid center that, if injured, affects your very existence.

If your arm is struck, while it might be painful, you will still be able to function, even if it's only to run away. If you're struck in a vulnerable spot on the centerline, you may well be down or dead.

'Sections' of the centerline are also subject to circular attacks. We need to train in all aspects of movement but with emphasis on getting 'off line' in my opinion.

Moving away from an attack can be done intelligently or not so intelligently.

For example, if an assailant attacks and we simply move straight back, even though we may avoid this first strike, we have remained on the line of attack and allow the attacker another opportunity to strike again because he will track you.

If we jump wildly to the side, we again avoid the initial attack, but we've now created space between ourselves and our enemy--space that the enemy will probably fill with a new attack.

However there will be times when the best course of action will indeed be one of wildly jumping out of the way and keeping going…it is all about circumstances of engagement.

Intelligent moving in response to an attack in Uechi, if you study the kata properly...
Usually means blending by entering or turning…and the combination of powerful entry and turning.

What is important to learn, is that 'entry' is not necessarily a 'straight in' move but 'oblique slide by stepping' like going to the 'two or ten o'clock' off the side of the opponent and then spinning on your front foot to achieve positioning behind the opponent…something I teach constantly on the floor.

Don't worry about any sanchin feet positions or sanchin turning...just turn naturally in a fluid manner.

The going 'straight in' is necessary in certain situations like attacking the opponent's throat with your forearm as he is in the process of 'cocking' an arm to hit you with an overhand blow, with or without a weapon.

Many of these drills must be practiced with one person with his back against the wall when attacked to develop the instinct to 'fly off' directly to three o'clock or nine o'clock…

Or 'fly off' to ten and two o'clock diagonally off the sides of the opponent…here also smashing your trailing leg shin against one of his lower legs as he advances in the attack. Think of breaking his lower leg when you strike.

Or...to learn the proper timing of a straight entry to short stop the attack and develop the lines of force and directions of your entry techniques.

Above all keep it simple and gross motor.

The other very important 'off line' technique I enjoy teaching is the 'swinging door' concept.

Envision yourself as a door someone is pushing to open.

This comes into play when you must deal with a sudden shove into your chest, one or two arms, by an assailant, something you must train to 'read' to begin with.

The idea is to ingrain to roll around the incoming arm/s by keeping the side of your body/arms in contact and blending with the assailant's arms/body as he comes at you, which by your tenshin move, will place you by his flank or rear as he slips by.


Here's where you can either strike from a safer position, or, as we practice in our dojo, keep rolling around, after seizing one of the opponent's arms, and spin him into a wall or into the floor.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 5:23 pm 
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I think the idea of getting off the centre line is a an ideal that is very hard to use in a real combat situation, because ranges break down so quickly. I agree with Van about grabbing hold of an opponent and swinging him around if possible, to do this effectively some judo stand up grappling can show you how difficult this is. If you choose to just stay in striking range then I would recommend moving off the line while punching your opponent with jabbing types punches, Aikido footwork is very effective as they use a lot of pivoting on the front foot and slipping the front foot behind you.if you know how to move your attacker around this is also helpfull.and I recently came upon this clip on Utube, although it's from a Goju practitioner I think it is probably more suited to Uechi

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3FrCRs4w4w


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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 6:17 pm 
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It is true that in the chaos of combat _ moving off line is not so easy as ranges change so quickly.

It will become more difficult if you train to stand your ground because of operant conditioning.

Yet, moving off line is a survival technique taught in particular by lethal force trainers when teaching how to fight with firearms and bladed weapons.

It is a concept that needs to be ingrained by thousands of repetitions under the most habitual acts of violence found in the street.

It is also the very concept that makes for the best players in contact sports, while under stress, such as football or soccer.

The clip you posted is very similar to Uechi Wauke, which is excellent for usage in getting off line and redirecting an attack, along with dumping an adversary. It can be used in combination with the footwork I described.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 10:48 pm 
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This was posted on my forum a while back from a well known student of Master Itokazu [Uechi Ryu] a legendary sensei whom I met in Rhode Island years back. Just plain awesome.
Quote:
Sensei Itokazu taught that, kata teaches flow footwork_ precise controlled movements with power _ and it is up to the student 'figure out what else you can do' _

He did not just leave at that but would lead you in different directions, some of which took me a long time to realize, creating that 'damn so that's how he did that' moment.

Most saw only what they wanted, his strength and power, but many times he made me feel helpless by just not being there and me trying to figure out how I ended up on my ass.


I think this says a lot, especially the 'Most saw only what they wanted' …and I may add that also so many practitioners, as Rory points out, don't know what they should be seeing or wanting, because they don't take the time to research the concepts that work and don't bother to even basically test what they have learned.

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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 11:08 pm 
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As an Infantry soldiers we were taught a continuum of action determined by initiative, distance, and the characteristics of the battlefield.

When it came to 'fixed bayonet' drills, Sargent Macalino, Korean war vet with many bayonet 'kills' under his belt...followed the same concept...the big thing was to be able to move the right ways when challenged by a bayonet fight, or die a gruesome death.

Let us listen to lethal force trainers
Quote:
To understand why movement works we need to understand the OODA loop
described by Col. John Boyd.

As it applies to us, the adversary sees you, and determines you are an
enemy. What has happened, in essence, is that he has taken a mental
photograph of the battlefield. He then makes a decision based on that
photo and then takes action.

If that battlefield changes from what his
photograph documented, then his subsequent plan is no longer valid and
he must change it, formulating a new plan to adapt to the change.

What you do by moving is that you destroy his current mental
photograph and subsequently the plans based on it. This is what Boyd
refers to as Destruction and Creation (of paradigms).

It is the study of angles. The situation of engagement will determine where you go by your position in relation to his/theirs, the
existence of cover, and the location of exits.

All things being equal, you will gain better results by moving to the sharp forward angles as may be identified by the 1:00 or 11:00 on a clock face.

While we understand the validity and advantage of the forward angular
drive, we do not discount the other areas of movement such as lateral
and rear angular as would be described as the 3:00 and 9:00 and the
5:00 and 7:00 respectively.


Why would we bother doing these when the forward lines give us such
advantages? Because the exit, or a solid piece of cover may be within
a step or two to those areas. Moreover, we cannot force a technique to
function in all circumstances, we can only adapt to the given fight.
Thus the ability to move to any and all angles with equal drive and
speed is an essential thing.

Characteristics of good movement include;

1). The alignment of the feet, knees, hips and shoulders in the
desired direction of travel.

2). Dipping the upper body away from the gun muzzle by lowering the
head and shoulders in the desired direction of travel. We train this
in the early stages by actually touching the ground with the finger
tips in the initial "drop off line".

3). Orientation of the feet so the body can move explosively in the
desired direction. One mistake seen is the feet separating excessively
and reducing the "loading" of the legs.

4). A plyometric loading of the legs during the "drop offline", and a
subsequent explosion off that loading in the desired direction of
travel.

5). The movement must be natural and easily learned, maintained in
training, and implemented in all situations, to all angles, and with
all weapons forcefully and quickly.

Those are the components that we have seen work best. As you see it is
not solely based on "movement off a given point", but rather movement
off a gun-eye line in multiple planes and to various angles.

Additionally, while this is going on, you access the pistol from
concealment, draw it, and shoot the adversary...often before he can
adjust. Using these concepts, students in our classes, not Delta
commandos, but common citizens, are usually able to evade an already
drawn and pointed handgun, draw their own pistol and "shoot" the
adversary-gunman between two to four times before he can adjust to
what they've done.

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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 4:32 am 
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Good thread , I agree movement is king , Id like to comment on a few things beyond the obvious defensive benifits

there's lots of reasons for getting of the line , but it boils down too effectively hit someone while there attacking you , they must miss. To effectively counter you must attack.

you see only one person can hold the line , and being caught on the train tracks you have a choice, stop the train or get of the tracks, attacking down the line is attacking the train , were force on force so you better be bigger,stronger,faster

Vans examples are great Enshins a good example , being able to pivot and slide are the real skills , technically I agree with his descriptions.

Now as you get better distance becomes moot , and it becomes angles , you can pivot and angle and enter without moving much , but you are not where the hitting is taking place . Remembering there are entry's inside and outside

the other conditioned element of movement IMHO is non resistance , I need to get away form my instinct to stand , to root and too push back , exactly what is expected and wanted , by yielding and moving we can condition our reaction to yield absorb and have the potential to attack rather than resist, being active rather than reactive.

Being loose and explosive rather than tense and resistant.

yielding is often an opening of the qua and a torque , giving the potential for the compression and more powerful counterattack.

there's room for soft and hard , but really you need a point were they both come together , and that's the strategic position and point of least resistance , and that's not on the tracks.


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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 11:14 am 
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Van Canna wrote:
Examples of moving off the X or line of attack are seen in these Enshin karate clips.

Mark…think of the X as your last known address where the opponent's techniques are being dispatched to be received. What you do is move to a different address before the 'goods' arrive.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-aV5SnnENM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n_-zSamk6WQ

I see those as moves in between our kata 'moves' and have used them in taking down opponents during tournaments. George might remember when I took down 'Baby Huey'[because he was so big]…_the student of Ed Daniels [the king kong of karate]_that I fought in Rhode Island in one of Pesare's tourneys.

Every good fighter knows how to move off the X to flank the opponent and counter from his blind spot, forcing the opponent to 'reset' his 'ooda loop'[observe, orient, decide, and act]…

And as Rick wrote about Jim Maloney, I also teach movement and Blading, combined with straight entries, when straight entries are necessary. In fact, Maloney was at our dojo few weeks ago, and we went over this in class for two hours.

Straight, short stop entries can be tricky if you are facing a very big, burly, tall opponent…think using an entry into someone like Andre Tippet, NFL hall of fame.

And Mark…the black belt is correct that you would break your arm trying to 'block' a power front kick with a gedan barai, because the ulna of your forearm will fracture.

Also trying to 'block' low shin round house kicks aimed at the legs, inside or out, with your rising your legs, is fraught with danger when receiving 'killer kicks' _

In our dojo I have some very powerful black belts well over two hundred pounds, two of which are former heavy weight boxers.

I show the need to get off the line of attack, by placing a heavy bag on the floor resting against a student's side of the leg and then I have the powerful black belts kick the bag full force. Those shots move both the bag and the person sideways upon impact.

The shins of all my students are extremely well conditioned as well.

Then I ask the student who was holding the bag to throw away the bag and take the same power kicks by staying in place and raising his leg to intercept or block.

Nobody volunteers for this. They then apply themselves fully into the 'reading' of incoming shots and move off line pretty much as you see in the above clips.



The first video from Enshin reminds me of how kanshiwa is first learned in some dojos. I learned kanshiwa bunkai from Walter Mattson and my current sensei is Joe Graziano. We do kanshiwa bunkai with the forearm as an entry as seen in the first video. I think,Van, you are familiar with how both Walter and Joe teach it. It's a white belt exercise that becomes more relevent and practical the longer study and look at it. I'd be interested in your comments on how we can use this as a practical extension of kata and bunkai study.

Love watching these videos and this discussion as it affirms to me that my seniors have had it right all along.


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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 3:28 pm 
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Stryke
Quote:
you see only one person can hold the line , and being caught on the train tracks you have a choice, stop the train or get of the tracks, attacking down the line is attacking the train , were force on force so you better be bigger,stronger,faster


Well said Marcus, I like the train analogy.

And here is where I see some people's assumptions about their capabilities _programming them for a rude awakening.

Personally, I tell my students that any defensive action must take into consideration the nature of the opponent. You first need to evaluate in a split second who you are up against.

Burly, massive individuals, adrenalized and fueled by bad intent...like this guy as an example...

Image

are not easy to stop even with bullets as it has been reported in police reports and newspaper accounts the world over.

This is the 'train' Marcus is referring to.

If you meet him head on, there is a pretty good chance you will not stop him from overrunning you and stomping you head into the pavement, regardless of what you hit him with and where.

Recall the video I posted where a robber gets hit full force on the head half a dozen times with an ax handle and still kept on fighting.

You also need to minimize the chances of such burly people grabbing you and crushing the breath out of you in a bear hug.

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PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2013 3:51 pm 
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Quote:
I think,Van, you are familiar with how both Walter and Joe teach it. It's a white belt exercise that becomes more relevent and practical the longer study and look at it. I'd be interested in your comments on how we can use this as a practical extension of kata and bunkai study.


I am not sure remember correctly John, please give us more details on how the forearm is used in the bunkai.

And as to a practical extension of kata bunkai, John, could you also be more detailed as to the concept you have in mind?

Thanks, John.

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