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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:22 pm 
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What a great thread. I've learned much from this thread, had a great time watching all the video clips (as well as other clips that were on those sites). I hope all of my fellow old guys truly appreciate what we now have at our fingertips. We didn't have youtube/internet/forums thirty years ago. We didn't have the luxury of discussions with other experienced Martial Artists from the comfort of our homes - especially when they were hundreds of miles away. What a great world we all live in now!

I'm retired LEO. As such, you get used to certain aspects of violence and get used to surprises. I've also worked in the bouncer industry in night clubs, some of which were before I started Martial Arts, I've worked in juvey lockups, worked in Boston Schools during forced busing (got in more fights on a weekly basis than our fighting dojo ever saw) I worked as a stunt man in the entertainment industry, and I've been married forever to a crazed tom boy Martial Artist who's half Sicilian, half Irish/Scottish. She doesn't even need a second person in the room to start an argument. I competed in fighting for 27 years and have been beat up more than anyone I know. I also grew up in the projects as a wee lad.

I'm sure all of that has helped me prepare for reality in some way. But it's not even close to what the important things were/are. Every one of the important things came from the dojo. Even BEFORE I actually trained. As I've said here before, my first exposure to the arts were watching classes at Mattson Academy. I remember, quite clearly, thinking "Oh, my God, these people are nuts. But, man oh man, that's what I want to do!"

I also remember thinking "They're big, strong men." Then I saw a class of young people, some of whom were smaller than me. That really blew my mind.

I know things are different for everybody. But, for me, it was the discipline of Karate training that trained me for reality. NOT the fighting techniques, it was the process. It was where I learned exactly what the human body and mind could accomplish. It was where I learned the difference between what I was and what I was becoming. It was walking to the dojo in a blizzard when my car was broken. Then walking home all sweaty and sore and thinking of every single moment of class time as I waded through slush and drifts, my feet all numb. I would have bought new boots that week, but I had to buy that new fangled safe-T kick stuff that had just come out. The boots would have to wait. It was training in a horse stance when your legs were bruised and your feet blistered, and not letting your mind wander to "when the hell is class going to end?" It was wrapping that bad wrist with duct tape so you could at least TRY to do the pushups. It was going to class when you just didn't want to. And again. And again.

I've been in situations I didn't want to be in. It wasn't my firearm or my knife that made it easier. They probably had guns and knives, too. It wasn't that I was used to fighting, which I was - heck, I'm sure they were used to fighting as well. And while my awareness, tactics and experience were probably better than theirs - those things didn't tip the scales in my favor. The process of Martial Training did.

Yes, we all need tactical instruction and practice, we all need to take our lumps while getting them. But, in my opinion, what we all go through in the dojo, day in and day out, shouldn't be discounted when it comes to the subject of preparing for reality.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:31 pm 
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8) :D great post


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:48 pm 
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Yeah great post Otto.....but to continue the discussion, an earlier point made by Rick was that in a shipwreck, when in the water the young guys gave up first whereas the older guys hung on..now that may mean something to us long term martial artists 8) .but the downside , in a shipwreck the people most likely to drown are the good swimmers :( , maybe they are overconfidant, maybe they don't have enough fear.but it is something to be aware of . So don't be afraid!!.and that means don't be afraid to run, don't be afraid to cry out for help.and more of what I mean is don't be afraid to use a "force multiplier".....you may know lots of forms, have excellent hand skills ...but they pale into insignificance when faced by a powerlifter with a pickaxe handle......so have something yourself, maybe a "stinger".but me I prefer a boxspanner or a radiator key, I have one shaped like a cross in brass, and I can hold it like a shoken.but a Chinese Shoken where you hit with your knuckle or your thumb.and it slips in my pocket real easy and I can explain it to the police .and if they say to me that it is an "offensive weapon" I can look at them real stupid and say."No it's a radiator key" :lol:


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Curious as to what additional training guys do to"train for reality" outside the dojo. I lift weights 3 days per week, stretch twice each day ( and that's probably not enough in my case) walk or ride a bike daily. In addition I hit BOB in the basement when working out,work some joint locks with my son who trains mma every week, and do some aspect of Kata each day.

Jo I just turned 58 this week :( .so I've been doing this Schitt for nearly half a century

I pretty much do what you do, but I love basics.I love them more than anything, maybe I'm stupid.....I love combinations but not the boxing kind more a mix of boxing with open hands, or open hands with headbutts and elbow strikes.and I love training with a stick, a pocket stick, a flashlight.just about anything........I like nunchuks as well.but I think of them as more art than function 8)


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:21 pm 
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Otto
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I know things are different for everybody. But, for me, it was the discipline of Karate training that trained me for reality. NOT the fighting techniques, it was the process. It was where I learned exactly what the human body and mind could accomplish. It was where I learned the difference between what I was and what I was becoming.


Amen to that_then we couple that with 'Education' a la Rory Miller and act on it...and our percentages go up.

And what Otto wrote about the Mattson Academy of days of yore...well it was a veritable battleground at times, because we had other fighters come up and try to take us out.

And one arrogant Japanese 'sensei' with a 'tough' student showed up one night declaring he was now to take over the mattson Academy as chief instructor for George...he got thrown out after his 'tough' student got his ass kicked.

The 'sensei' was smart enough not to square off on the floor.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:48 am 
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Quote:
Curious as to what additional training guys do to"train for reality" outside the dojo. I lift weights 3 days per week, stretch twice each day ( and that's probably not enough in my case) walk or ride a bike daily. In addition I hit BOB in the basement when working out,work some joint locks with my son who trains mma every week, and do some aspect of Kata each day.


probably average about 30-40 minutes a day sometimes more sometimes less , kettlebells , tabata workouts , walks , kata bagwork etc, mobility,conditioning , i mix it up ..... Also im pretty serious about diet and what i eat these days , i think its the best thing you can do for yourself, self protection or not .


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 4:29 pm 
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Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Otto wrote:
I know things are different for everybody. But, for me, it was the discipline of Karate training that trained me for reality. NOT the fighting techniques, it was the process. It was where I learned exactly what the human body and mind could accomplish. It was where I learned the difference between what I was and what I was becoming. It was walking to the dojo in a blizzard when my car was broken. Then walking home all sweaty and sore and thinking of every single moment of class time as I waded through slush and drifts, my feet all numb. I would have bought new boots that week, but I had to buy that new fangled safe-T kick stuff that had just come out. The boots would have to wait. It was training in a horse stance when your legs were bruised and your feet blistered, and not letting your mind wander to "when the hell is class going to end?" It was wrapping that bad wrist with duct tape so you could at least TRY to do the pushups. It was going to class when you just didn't want to. And again. And again.

I've been in situations I didn't want to be in. It wasn't my firearm or my knife that made it easier. They probably had guns and knives, too. It wasn't that I was used to fighting, which I was - heck, I'm sure they were used to fighting as well. And while my awareness, tactics and experience were probably better than theirs - those things didn't tip the scales in my favor. The process of Martial Training did.

Yes, we all need tactical instruction and practice, we all need to take our lumps while getting them. But, in my opinion, what we all go through in the dojo, day in and day out, shouldn't be discounted when it comes to the subject of preparing for reality.



Thank you for this post Otto.

It was excellent and the above portion should resonate with every martial artist.

I do refer to mind and mindset and there is more to come but where do we develop this?

Where can a person go to develop this?

We can think of all the drills we want and, if we get them somewhat right, then they can help but what do we do that forges the mind we want?

If I think back over the schools I have been involved in and the teachers and mentors I have had I can see what Otto is referring to.

Even the small group of us who still meet every Saturday in my small padded room to bang it out has this element to it.

Just an excellent post and a great addition to the thread.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:09 pm 
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It can be any art or science, but its the LIFE that it brings to you, and the LIFE that you give it :D
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4lagjMXq ... r_embedded


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:52 pm 
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Training notwithstanding, it always comes down to who your opponent will be and his 'mindset' as well.

When you think about it, the oppositon will likely have a significant advantage over you or a 'perceived' advantage i.e., for the most part there will be more than one attacker, they will likely have some sort of weapon, and they will be bigger, stronger and maybe faster than you are...because people who come after you on the street, most likely have done that before, and always from an advantage...if they don't think they have the advantage, they will choose another victim.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 6:00 am 
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Van Canna wrote:
if they don't think they have the advantage, they will choose another victim.


Very true - so the only advanage you do get - is to not be what they expected........

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 10:46 am 
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Van Canna wrote:
As to training...yes work hard, stay hard, work 'concepts' more than techniques...but also stay armed in some fashion, know your weapons, and that includes your body.

And then come to grips that you soon get old and much of what you took for granted is gone, leaving the mental, which also has its day of reckoning.


This is a post that has made me do some thinking. There are many, at least that I know of, that have trained uechi for most of there lives and are still tough customers as they approach 70 and in some cases beyond. I think it's the repetitious ingrained responses as well as the practical flexibility and movement that uechi ryu develops for this that makes this so. I still am inspired by older practitioners that still have it and you just know can still defend themselves. I attribute it to the sanchin stance- natural, hands up, not an unnatural pose, low kicks, close quarters applications. I also feel that the emphasis on self defense and not sport sparring makes a karateka capable of self defense from attackers he couldn't handle in a toe to toe sparring match.

Tony Blauer, whose trainings I've attended, calls this the "Trojan Horse Metaphor." You pretend you are going to be the helpless victim, put up hands in a defensive almost please -don't-hurt-me pose, invite attacker in close and when he gets close enough, about sanchin range you pre-emptively strike to the face, eyes, or throat. At this point you can do whatever you've been trained to do in your TMA or, if you are one of the fortunate golden agers that still can-run. Uechi ryu is great for this because we are comfortable going from hands down to hands up and anything that gets into sanchin range is a definite threat and needs to be dealt with.

In my dojo group most of my seniors consider sanchin an exercise. I think it is both, depending on what I am focusing on. The arm thrust to stance at the beginning has many practical applications if you think about it and the three arm strikes before the wauke movements could be pulling in attacker for head butt, throat or eye strike, or preliminary movement to gaining control for grappling.

Economy of movement could delay the effects of age and ability to be effective. I try to train with this in mind.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:36 pm 
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I think it all comes down to the amount of time that you have practiced and the level that you practised at. i used to play guitar when I was younger, and I can now still play some pretty difficult classical pieces although I haven't practised in years, I know other people who never got passed a few chords, and I think it's the same with Martial arts. i have a friend who taught me boxing and escrima, he was a pupil of Harry Benfield in Uechi. He has recently had a triple bypass and yet he is still tough as nails, I know another guy who was a bodybuilder he is 67 and is stll really strong.
If you train hard and think a lot about Martial arts then you start to challenge some preconceptions , or rumours and tales that people tell you. I don't think that training with a partner is such a big deal, because people hold back a lot, even boxers....so something like " BOB" is great because you can throw everything at him and be unconcerned about hurting him. 8) .same with kata and visualisation, or basics


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 7:58 pm 
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Training with a partner is a huge deal.Unless we occasionally work with
a resistant partner, get smacked around a bit, and get banged up then imo we are not training realistically. Solo can be done but a steady diet of that would lead to a false sense of what we can do. It's up to us to insure that training partners are not going easy on us.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 3:59 am 
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One thing that's important I think in training self protection is training from a natural stance.

I think stances are where you end up not where you come from.

Same when looking at Kata,I think many miss the fact you move through a neutral stance between stances, work from neutral , not some aggressive posture that should send a signal your looking to fight


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 5:22 am 
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Here's a good link to South narc combatives...

http://www.urbancombatives.com/sn.htm

Good stuff.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 9:59 am 
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Stryke wrote:
One thing that's important I think in training self protection is training from a natural stance.

I think stances are where you end up not where you come from.

Same when looking at Kata,I think many miss the fact you move through a neutral stance between stances, work from neutral , not some aggressive posture that should send a signal your looking to fight


Great post and observation. I've had the good fortune to be exposed to a lot of great teachers through my own teachers. My current teacher, Joe Graziano, was Shinyu Gushi's senior student and Master Gushi did seminars at Joe's Milford dojo the past few years. Master Gushi had a habit of dropping his hands to a neutral position below the waist position before demonstrating an application. I found it puzzling because originally I was taught that this was a cradinal sin in karate. I asked Joe about this and he explained that this was Gushi's way of making the technique more practical. This is also in line with what Tony Blauer teaches as the body's natural "flinch/startle response." Master Takara also drops his hands when doing some kata, or at least I've seen him do this when performing sanseiryu on video.

Also, this whole concept fits in with Blauer's Trojan Horse metaphor and adds to the element of surprise where a defender goes from prey to predator.

Really, like the idea that "stances are where you end up, not where you come from." This tends to make one more mobil and able to get out of the way. Also consistent with Gushi's ideas of going from soft-when being mobil, to hard- when applying a technique, and then repeating through the course of defending and attacking. If you ever train or spar with a boxer or someone trained in sport fighting it's easy to feel lost as they move around, bob, weave and so on. Moving from stance to stance and not wasting motion and energy is something that good karate should train. Kata, as I understand it, is moving from stance to stance, something that makes the training practical.


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