<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
I've always known that in karate we tend to digress into a linear movement in our sparring.
In tournament play there is an element of stress. In a defensive situation you have a more serious element of stress that tends to revert us to primal instincts, regardless of our training to the contrary.
A classic example of this is controversy of the weaver stance vs. the isosceles stance in combat with a handgun.
The weaver requires motor tasks requiring judgment, concentration, and fine muscle control in tracking, aiming and shifting.
The isosceles finds the shooter with his feet slightly wider than shoulder width, arms stretched out straight to the target, and with an instinctive crouch, the one we were used to look at in the old FBI series on TV.
Westmoreland  examined the two stances in realistically simulated combat scenarios. The majority of the participants were weaver proponents.
The scenarios were divided between spontaneous and non-spontaneous in nature.
96.7% reverted to instinctive isosceles in spontaneous events, and 92.6% reverted to isosceles in non-spontaneous events.
The same results were observed at the Lethal force Institute during combat scenarios I participated in.
Motor behavior research by Westmoreland, indicates that any action requiring precision in target engagement, asymmetrical action of the arms, canting the body in a side stance to the target [such as in turning] __ is more of a fine motor skill nature that tends to deteriorate under stress.
The same conclusion was drawn by examining the behavior of the men in combat situations back in 1927 Shangai by Fairbairn and Sykes.
Westmoreland evaluated the issue of “ an inborn reflex to squarely face the attack” __ A sudden attack in close quarters triggers the primal instinct to square the opponent with our hands and arms extended in front of us and keep facing the opposition rather than turn to the side, as in a tai sabaki movement.
Westmoreland made the strong argument that survival training should be developed from natural response to critical situations..
[This message has been edited by Van Canna (edited July 12, 2001).]