you simply cannot argue with the truth!
with so many different martial arts available to learn, how on earth do you choose the most suitable for personal self defense in everyday life?
Martial arts come in two basic formats. Although both generally originate from the need to protect either ones self or ones family/property, they are very different .
sports martial arts
sports or competition martial arts normally derive from a more comprehensive system of fighting but they have been modified to allow participants to "test" against each other.
in order to make things as fair and safe as is possible, rules are introduced regulating who can fight with who and which techniques are allowed and which are forbidden.
opponents are usually selected by weight initially with many different categories depending on which style or system . in more recent years with the emergence of such competitions as ufc, cage rage and k1, the weight of the opponents is often the only similarity between the two participants with many different fighting styles being matched against each other. this is a far cry from the more traditional competition styles such as boxing and judo but it does make for some very exciting action. probably close to gladiatorial battles of old but with a referee to stop them short of killing each other.
almost without exception martial arts competitors wear protective equipment such as gloves or mitts, groin protection, shin, knee and elbow pads and mouth guards.
not only does this protect but it also reduces the effectiveness of many of the techniques which under normal circumstances would be decisive.
many of the more devastating techniques are forbidden to be used in competition:- groin strikes, eye gouges, throat strikes, elbows, spinning backfists and heel locks-all of which can incapacitate a person instantly. many of the fighters are very able to apply these techniques at will but for spectator satisfaction they are not allowed. imagine the scene where you paid £350 for a ringside seat and the fight was stopped within 15 seconds because they guy in the red corner poked blue in the eye and blinded him.......
.........if foul play does take place there is a referee within 6 feet of both combatants who is trained to separate them before too much damage is done.
in all sport and competition martial arts there is a planned date for the competition to take place giving participants time to train, time to prepare themselves mentally and time to perhaps research their opponent a little to increase their advantage slightly.
the above facts are geared towards the unarmed martial arts as these are the most popular styles used in competition. it would be crazy to suggest that that a person would attack another person with a weapon without some sort of protection being worn.............
self defense martial arts
..............but on the street it happens.
and none of the rules or regulations which apply in the octagon or boxing ring or on the judo mat apply on the street.
you do not know who might attack you. you do not know how big or small they will be. you do not know if they are skilled in boxing or ground fighting. you do not know if they are carrying a weapon. will it be just one person or a group?.........who will be the referee to ensure fair play? how likely are you to be wearing protective padding "just in case"?
...........are you ready?
no.........unless you learn how to be ready.
as stated earlier, there are so many systems and styles to choose from it is absolutely essential that you do your research first, by reading many sites like this one, by contacting and speaking to instructors and by attending trial classes and lessons before you make a final decision.
it will often take a lot more than a one hour free lesson to be able to make an educated decision as to whether the system is right for you.
do not be fooled by instructors who will tell you that you can learn to defend yourself regardless of how strong you are.
the person attacking you will not be doing so gently or relative to your build and strength. they just want to hurt you.
regular training and class attendance will slowly build your strength in both defense and attack.
do not be encouraged by those who tell you that you will reach master level within 5 years if you train 3 times per week.
you will find some things easy to learn and some hard in any system. it is not about how soon but how well you can do something.
be careful of marketing terminology. things like "easy to learn". "suitable for all". "no need to be strong-use your opponents strength against them". "traditional lineage"."secret moves". "pressure point death touch" (DIM MAK)......................
..........no effective self defense is easy to learn. it takes time, dedication, hard work and perseverance to succeed. but once you have it it is yours to keep forever.
traditional- i don't do things the way my great grandad did them because things have evolved since then. things he did i now do more effectively because i have taken what he did and applied modern science and understanding to it. if we ALL DID THINGS BECAUSE IT IS THE TRADITIONAL WAY NOTHING WOULD EVER IMPROVE.
SECRET MOVES....DEATH TOUCHES.......AAAAARGHHHH!!!!!.......REALLY?
YES THERE ARE SOME POINTS ON THE BODY WHICH CAN CAUSE PROBLEMS WHEN STRUCK.
BUT HOW MANY PEOPLE PLAY RUGBY THROUGHOUT THE WORLD WEEK IN, WEEK OUT?
AND HOW MANY HEAVY IMPACTS ARE THERE ALL OVER THE BODY DURING A MATCH?
AND HOW MANY PLAYERS OUT OF ALL THOSE PROBABLE MILLIONS COULDN'T GET UP AGAIN AFTER BEING HIT IN THE "PRESSURE POINT"? AND HOW MANY DIED?
DON'T BE LED DOWN THE GARDEN PATH BY INSTRUCTORS WHO TELL YOU THAT YOU NEED TO RELAX YOUR BODY SO YOU CAN MOVE FASTER, DEFEND BY YIELDING, USE SOFTNESS TO BEAT STRENGTH AND "FEEL" WHAT YOUR OPPONENT IS DOING.
FEELING MIGHT WORK BUT ONLY AFTER YOU HAVE DEFENDED HIS POWERFUL PUNCH WITH A POWERFUL ATTACKING DEFENSE.
YOU WON'T BE RELAXED WITH A 15 STONE BRUTE THROWING PUNCHES AT YOU SO IGNORE THAT SUGGESTION.
BE SOFT AND YIELD YOUR OPPONENTS GREATER FORCE.........HOW DO I KNOW IT IS GREATER UNLESS I TRY TO STOP IT FIRST? AND IF IT WASN'T GREATER-I WIN.
REALISTIC STREET SELF DEFENSE NEEDS TO BE ABLE TO COPE WITH A HUGE ARRAY OF POSSIBLE ATTACKS. KICKS, PUNCHES, KNEES, ELBOWS, BITING, GRAPPLING, HEAD BUTTING, KNIVES, STICKS AND WORSE CASE SCENARIO GUNS.......
.......PROBLEM IS YOU WILL STRUGGLE TO DEAL WITH SOMEBODY WHO REALLY KNOWS WHAT THEY ARE DOING WHETHER ARMED OR UNARMED.
LUCKILY VERY FEW PEOPLE KNOW EXACTLY.
UNLESS THEY HAVE TRAINED.
AND IF THEY HAVE TRAINED TO THAT LEVEL THEY ARE NOT THE SORT OF PERSON YOU HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT.
A LITTLE WHITE LIE FOR YOU TO PROVE A POINT.
MY HALF MARATHON TIME IS 1 HOUR 54 MINUTES.
WE ALL KNOW THE GROUP OF TEENAGERS AND YOUNG ADULTS THAT HANG AROUND CAUSING TROUBLE AND THE GANG LEADER WHO IS "WELL HARD"
WELL I'VE NEVER TRAINED FOR OR RUN A HALF MARATHON SO MY TIME IS A LIE.
AND I KNOW THAT GANG LEADER SPENDS ALL HIS TIME HANGING AROUND STREET CORNERS NOT TRAINING SO HIM BEING "WELL HARD" IS A LIE.
YOU DON'T GET SOMETHING IN THIS LIFE WORTH HAVING UNLESS YOU WORK HARD FOR IT.
SELF DEFENSE IS THE SAME.
TO SUCCEED YOU NEED WILL, COURAGE , DILIGENCE, PERSEVERANCE AND HONOUR.
THROUGH HARD WORK IN EXERCISES, PROGRAMMES, APPLICATIONS AND FORMS YOU WILL GAIN TECHNICAL ABILITY, PERCEPTION OF TIMING, POWER AND SPEED.
BY LISTENING, THINKING AND LEARNING YOU WILL BECOME MENTALLY STRONGER.
BY TESTING AGAIN AND AGAIN YOUR ABILITY TO OVERCOME PHYSICAL AND MENTAL OBSTACLES YOUR CONFIDENCE IN EVERYDAY LIFE WILL SOAR.
TO FIND A SELF DEFENSE CLASS WHICH WELCOMES YOU BUT ALSO CHALLENGES YOU, WHICH PERHAPS AT TIMES FRIGHTENS YOU WITH THE TRUTH BUT BY DOING SO EDUCATES YOU INTO HIGHER UNDERSTANDING AND CAPABILITY AND WHICH BECOMES PART OF YOUR LIFE IS A RARE DIAMOND TO FIND.
I FOUND MINE YEARS AGO AND I HOPE YOU FIND YOURS TOO.
YOU WILL BECOME WHAT YOU ARE LOOKING FOR.
SIHING STEVE ROSE
INTERNATIONAL ACADEMY OF WINGCHUN-GB GRAVESEND.