Van Sensei, and all:
Greetings: I just want to say how much I'm enjoying this forum, and how much I'm learning from it.As I practice several different arts, but ooly one at a time, I am fascinated to hear about the kata being conditioning for stress reaction, with a squaring off and both hands up being taught.
I all the Okinawan styles of whichI know, this is so.It does seem to work, as well.
In Okinawan Kenpo, whichI've done since 1972, sparring is done wearing bogu, armor.How well I remember the first time or so.Just like the blue suit.
Technique goes all to Hell in a handbasket.In Judo, on the other hand, contact in training is a given from day one, so you start off slow and easy and work up to slam bang randori(free play).
What's good about Judo, IMO, is that you square off in a natural stance, you're in close, and you really do the techniquwes, as in bogu or blue suit training, of course in a safer manner than that, Judo being a sport.
But you learn not to panic when your opponent grabs or slams into you, dumps you upside down on the mat and locks a hold on you, because youcan stillemerge victorious in this position.
'Course, in karate we don't want things ever to go this far, but sometimes they do.
My point being that if you train for an emergency using realistic training methods, when it actually happens, ou will be prepared for it.
I have found that kata training using combat real kata, does indeed condition both the mind and body for real fight reaction when the cocktail kicks in.
But I think there also needs to be some kind of contact training, and the suit sounds like a good way to do it.
As far as arts teachnig finesse and minute precision go, I find that when actual attack conditions occur and you are the target, gross muscular and large body movement take over.
I also find that the kiai, or sharp partial exhalation of breath, cangive you direction of the adrenalinsn surge an a little better control.But doing it too soon can cause your opponent to experience adrenalin dump, and go of on you.
When sparring in a dojo, I try to keep a carefully neutral expression on my face, until I move in, then it's Tiger Eyes.This tends to cause the 'flight reaction in opponent.
In a real situation, I am ne of those(possibly from early zen practice or maybe it's a survival trait) who becomes very calm and relaxed, outwardly, while inwardly everyhing is geared to go.
That response has on several occasions saved me from actually being attacked by people who were in my face-it's hard to build up and go off on a blank wall, so to speak, I guess.
Anyhow, thanks again, everybod-I'm learning a lot in here, especially in this forum.Pleased to make your acquaintance, Van sensei.