You don't need to be very smart at all to be a good fighter. Mike Tyson was a man child, and could crush anyone in the sport ring in his heyday.
This reminds me of days in undergraduate engineering. I still remember the day that one of my engineering professors derived the diffusion equation from an example of "random walk." There was blackboard after blackboard after blackboard of work, all starting from an example of a particle that might go to the left or to the right with a certain probability. Next thing you know, you had an equation that explains much of nature as you and I know it. It explains how a teabag gives you a cup of tea. It explains why gargling with hot salt water comforts a sore throat. I could go on and on and on about things that most people take for granted.
No, you don't need to be able to understand technology to use it. But you know what? SOMEBODY has to make it.
Bruce Siddle, Darren Laur, David Grossman, Rory Miller, and others talk about what really matters in the martial domain. How is it that they know this? They aren't a collection of Neanderthals. They have trained minds, and they know how to use them. And when their thoughtful approaches stand the scrutiny of a world full of armchair cyber "experts", then they become the movers and shakers in the world.
Some time back a certain individual claimed he could move people without touching them. It was part of his martial specialty, and he was making some good money teaching the believers. He'd find some willing, suggestible soul in a group who would buy into his voodoo, and do some pretty impressive (bordering on ridiculously funny) demonstrations.
In came Dr. Bill and Dr. J.D. We challenged him to demonstrate his craft under controlled settings at camp. He agreed - mostly because he believed his own propaganda. So I designed an experiment, vetted it with J.D., ran it with Bill Jackson filming, and shared the result. Our no-touch martial artist claimed he could move people from the opposite end of a wall. So with a deck of cards that had one suit removed, I assigned pulling, pushing, or no action to a suit. Our hero did what the card said, and a subject on the other end of the wall was to do whatever they felt - with camera filming. And the result? He did WORSE than random chance would predict. Oops!
It's like the "cute" techniques in self-defense. You say you can make the fancy stuff work against the opponent of doom, right? Well guess what? The science types are telling us that extremes of neurohormonal stimulation lead to a loss of fine motor coordination and - to some extent - a loss of complex motor coordination. So whatareyagonna do, eh? If you choose not to do your science and math in school, then you can trust someone who has and has done their homework.
Or not. To your peril...
It takes all kinds to generate a gaggle of good fighters. You can choose to disrespect those around you who have contributed to the body of knowledge you freely drink from. I choose to give credit where credit is due.
Moreover... I hope one day to be more of one of those movers and shakers. But that's me.