Sunday, April 29, 2012

Train for reality

 I told a story a few posts back about facing down the bad guys while standing in natural stance, also called combat stance, with a stare down equivalent to that glare your mom used to give you. I wanted to elaborate a bit more on this.

Many martial arts teach fighting stances so many times on the streets you will see combatants stand ready to fight in a stance of some sort either they learned from actual training or something they saw in a movie. The drawbacks to fighting stances are first, they betray your style of fighting to your opponent so you are ruining your element of surprise. Most people know what a boxer or karate practitioner look like when they want to fight. It's as bad as telegraphing a punch or kick with a message of what your are about to unleash. A skilled street fighter will love for you to tell him how your going to defend yourself and that you actually are trying to defend yourself!!

By using a natural stance, which is just standing there, calmly ready to fight or ready to just walk away you are throwing your opponent off. You look confident but they aren't sure of what you can or are willing to do. You look intimidating when you are relaxed at the ready.

In Bujinkan and I'm sure with other combat arts fighting stances are just points in time. They are not meant for you to stand there in that posture to fight! You flow from posture to posture during combat and for the most part are just training aids. In reality you are not standing there face to face as they do in a karate tournament or UFC fight. As a warrior I train to get to the side or behind my opponent, I'm sure as heck not going to stand their trading punches with him and if he's is a powerful brute type of guy I really don't want to get nailed. It amazes me how fighters just stand there hitting each other. I'll be the first to admit my body couldn't handle that type of punishment so yea, I'm going to fight dirty and end the conflict in as short time as possible.

Ok, I went a bit off topic there. I was talking about stances. Don't become so rigid that you fight from stances. Be flexible and flow. If you are attacked odds are you will be either walking, standing or sitting. So train that way! Sit at a picnic table and have someone attack you from behind, those fancy kicks will be of no use I can assure you. Learn close in hand to hand combat. Train in scenario instead of classroom environment. Wear your tight jeans, your heavy boots or sneakers. Train for reality my fellow warriors...not the classroom.

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