Deer in the headlights Syndrome

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Deer in the headlights Syndrome

Postby mikemurphy » Sun Jan 07, 2001 2:20 pm

Before class yesterday, I decided to work with Atemi waza. Like usual, you have one thing in mind when you start class, but it always seems to change when you start looking at what people are doing.

Now I have some extremely talented students in my class (some with more talent than I'll ever have), but in watching them, I noticed that as soon as they hit the attacker with their atemi (distration to the planned move as we use it), they paused for a second before continueing the sequence.

I put it the exercise into a more real randori-type mode and they did the same thing. Of course, we talked about it and practiced some more, but it is hard to take human nature out of the human. I guess we can practice as much as possible and reduce some of the reaction time, but can we really react instantaneously? Is it possible? I honestly don't know, but I'm leaning toward the no side. I think there will always be a hesitation factor on most confrontations.

What do you think?

mike
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Deer in the headlights Syndrome

Postby Scott Danziger » Sun Jan 07, 2001 3:21 pm

I know this will be only a kyu view but let me try a stab at it.

Could it be how many different techniques are learned to counter the same attack? A split decision to figure out which one to use? Maybe a person should train with a technique for a particular attack that they like best and stick with that "one". Then do it over and over until it is reflex.



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Deer in the headlights Syndrome

Postby RA Miller » Sun Jan 07, 2001 11:42 pm

Mike-

I believe you can, and I believe if you look at the best JJ instructors you have worked with, their atemi, kansetsu and nage waza are a flowing, seamless whole.

Part of the problem with some students and instructors I have worked with is the tendency to separate technique- to concentrate on locking one class and striking the next and spend too little time on how strikes can be locks, locks can be strikes and both can be throws or parts of throws.

Another thing is psychology vs physiology- most students gauge the response to a technique to confirm the targetting for the follow-up. Once you convince them that the mechanical action will have a good effect regardless of the uke's reaction to the set up they not only flow better but start experimenting. I really value that experimental stage. When they start playing, they come to own the technique.

Rory
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Deer in the headlights Syndrome

Postby mikemurphy » Mon Jan 08, 2001 11:08 am

Scott and Rory,

Thanks for the input.

Scott,
There is something to be said for being "too" prepared I guess. Your scenario reminds me of the movie, "The Presido" starring Sean Connery. There is a scene there when he is in a bar and someone is picking a fight with him. He turns and tells the guy that he was knock the crap out of him using only his thumb and then proceded to do that. I know it's a movie, but it has some value to it. If we trained only one technique, perhaps we would get so good at that one, then we wouldn't have to worry about anything or anyone.

Rory,
My instructors do have seemingly great technique, but you know what? I have never attacked or seen them be attacked for real. Who knows how they would react? No disrespect intended to them of course. I have my own ideas of how they would do, even in their prime, but you never really know.
There is much to consider. Personally, I think it has to do with the mental aspect most. Let's be serious, we can teach anyone the techniques, that's not the problem in any art form; however, teaching the whys, whens, wheres, etc., is a whole different problem altogether.

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Deer in the headlights Syndrome

Postby RA Miller » Tue Jan 09, 2001 1:41 am

Mike-

I use language for a metaphor for MA alot. Techniques are just words. Tactics, strategy, combinations are the forensics, reason and grammar of it. Some are beautiful to watch- It is a song, in language metaphor. Some do well in a one-on-one contest. Debate. A few can shout down a fish wife and curse like a sailor.

That's probably too esoteric.

The mental stuff is hard to transmit. I can tell my students how different kinds of fear have different tastes; what it feels like to berserk and how horrible it feels afterwards; the sheer awe of physically going berserk and mentally staying in absolute control; the snap from ho-hum day to ITS OVER, so fast the adrenaline doesn't hit until you sit down with the paperwork. I can tell them what they need to do, tell them what their minds will do to screw them up.

But only to a little extent can I ever show them.

You're right. The mental stuff is hard. When you said that you had never seen your instructors attacked for real, it really made me think. I can imagine being two generations of instructors removed from real use, trying to transmit the "mental stuff". Gad.

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