Can You Be An Expert?

Discussion in 'General Self Defense' started by MJS, Dec 8, 2013.

  1. CNida

    CNida Green Belt

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    Well said, partner.


    ____________________________

    "A man who has attained mastery of an art reveals it in his every action." - Anonymous
     
  2. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Sr. Grandmaster

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    IMO, if one wants to participate in any open discussion, he should not depend on his age, number years of training to support his opinion. Instead, he should provide enough evidence. This is why I don't think to make your "age", "belt ranking (other forum does)" to appear in your post is a good idea.

    It may be silly for a 60 years old to argue with a 20 years old, or a 7th degree black belt to argue with a white belt. But on internet, everybody are equal and all opinions are valid.
     
  3. CNida

    CNida Green Belt

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    I can think of someone who will disagree with that.

    It's not me though because I make a habit to remind people that I generally don't know much of anything when it comes to Martial Arts or self defense.

    In the words of some that automatically makes anything that comes out of my mouth "wrong".

    Anyway, well said, and I agree.


    ____________________________

    "A man who has attained mastery of an art reveals it in his every action." - Anonymous
     
  4. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    :rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:
     
  5. AIKIKENJITSU

    AIKIKENJITSU Yellow Belt

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    From Aikikenjitsu
    Yes you can teach a system of s-d and your student will be very effective in defending themselves. You must teach the system the proper way and then you will be teaching it like the way the Master put it together with his life experience.
     
  6. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    How do you define effective in defending yourself?
     
  7. RTKDCMB

    RTKDCMB Senior Master

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    When someone attacks you and you don't get killed or seriously hurt.
     
  8. Balrog

    Balrog Master of Arts

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    Every day that goes by that you don't get into a fight is real world experience of the finest kind. You are controlling your environment and yourself.
    Remember what Sun Tzu said:

     
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  9. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    With the discussions ongoing regarding effective techniques and such, the term "expert" is being used again. I continue to have concerns regarding the use of the term "expert" to include people who have little to no practical experience using the techniques that they teach.

    While I will readily agree that a person can learn practical skills and prepare in classes using a variety of training modalities, including drills, scenarios and such, I really question whether someone can become an "expert" in self defense without extensive experience.
     
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  10. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Then by your definition, I'm an expert. But I sure don't consider myself one.
     
  11. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Expertise is relative. Compared to someone with no practical experience, you are an expert. Compared to someone with extensive practical experience, maybe not so much. :)
     
  12. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, define "extensive practical experience"?
     
  13. Aiki Lee

    Aiki Lee Master of Arts

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    In your opinion would someone have to have shot and killed a man to be considered an expert marksman?

    I believe with appropriate training you can have expert knowledge in something without having to actually apply it in a real situation, but training conditions must address the reality of such situations based off the experiences of those who know or through appropriate research of those situations if you are going to claim "expertise" in the field.

    For example I would trust that a heart surgeon who has never performed an operation before would have expert knowledge and would trust that knowledge, and he may even perfectly perform his first surgery. But an expert requires experience under real conditions.

    I guess the question for me is can expertise be obtained through simulated conditions or must they be experienced through actual conditions?
     
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  14. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    As I said, it's relative. More than zero would be a place to start.

    in any field, there are those who come out of training and are, at best, consciously competent. In other words, they can do the job (provided the training is solid) but aren't experts by any stretch. Over time, applying the skills in context, these trainees become experts. The difference is experience. There are surgeons, and then there are the guys who have so much knowledge and accumulated expertise that other surgeons defer to them and learn from them.

    The key, though, is that experience comes AFTER training, applying skills learned in context. Training cannot replace experience.
     
  15. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Of course not. But being an expert marksman means just that. Has anyone here been fired upon? LEO or military or civilian? If so, would you say that there is a practical difference between firing on the range and defending yourself while under fire? I am guessing that there is a difference. In the military I qualified with an M-16 and a 12 ga shot gun. I never actually fired either in combat. While pretty well trained, I think I would have been competent to do what needed to be done, I wouldn't want to be the guy teaching the class and certainly wouldn't claim to be an expert in military combat.

    So, you bring up a great point. It's really critical to understand what expertise you ACTUALLY have. We're all experts in the things we do all the time. I'm an expert at driving a stick shift in heavy traffic. I grew up in Seattle, with lots of steep hills and very bad traffic. I would have no reservations teaching other people how to drive a stick shift in tough conditions.
    Another great point. There is such a thing as academic expertise. Here on MT, we would call that person a keyboard warrior. A historian can know a lot about midieval siege tactics without ever having laid siege to a castle. But, can't we agree that knowing about it isn't the same as doing it?

    Regarding the heart surgeon, in a pinch, with my life on the line, I'll take the heart surgeon who's never performed an actual surgery. But I wouldn't consider him an expert. That guy is a highly trained novice and I'm his first go. Personally, I'd look for the guy who has successfully performed the specific surgery in question many times. More is better. Even better yet, I'd like to have the guy to whom other heart surgeons consult when they don't know what to do. THAT guy is an expert among experts.
    Proficiency is not expertise. One can become proficient with aptitude and sound training. Expert? I would say no.
     
  16. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    Don't you expect an "expert" mountaineer to have climbed a few mountains? I could teach you how to rappel, ascend a rope and tie knots....but I'm no mountaineer, let alone an expert one.
     
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  17. Paul_D

    Paul_D Master Black Belt

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    It's not how you define expert, it's how you define self defence. Surely an expert in self defence is one who has never had to defend themselves becasue they have the knowledge to avoid dangerous people and dangerous situations and know how opportunist criminals select their victims, and can teach you how to avoid the body language they look for?

    Self defence is not about fighting or physical techniques, self defence is about avoiding situations which are dangerous, or dealing with them once they start, in such a way that they don't escalate to physical violence.

    Physical techniques/fighting is what happens once your self defence has failed. So if you have a self defence expert who has been in 15 street fights, he's the last person you I would want teaching me how to increase my personal safety, as he obviously doesn't have a clue becasue he keeps getting attacked. Yes he can teach you violence, but being good at violence doesn't lessen the chance of you being attacked. That's like learning how to cross the road form someone who has been run over 15 times. The guy I want teaching me how to cross the road is the guy whose never been hit by a a car.

    A self defence expert is someone who knows how muggers select their victims, and can teach me what you need to do to avoid being selected by them as a victims, not the guy who doesn't have a clue but can teach me a knife disarm once it's too late and there si already a knife being pointed at you.

    I would say the Suzy Lamplaugh Trust has expert Self Defence advice, but it doesn't have any advice on physical techniques or fighting.
     
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  18. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Did you actually read any of the thread? This discussion is about expertise, and what makes a person an expert. So yes, it is in point of fact exactly about how you define expert.
     
  19. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Over the course of this thread, I've said many times that the term "self defense" is so broad as to be unhelpful. So, to an extent, I agree with you that how you define self defence matters a great deal. There are a lot of problems that come about simply because people are using an abstract term to refer to something very specific. "Self Defence" when they mean "situational awareness" or "de escalation techniques" or "how to fight x number of ninja in a dark alley."

    I appreciate that you have shared what you have in mind when you think of self defence, and your definition seems very reasonable. But that's not a shared definition. When you look at a karate dojo or a krav maga school or a BJJ school and they advertise "Learn Self Defence," do you think they mean all of the things you mention above? I'd say probably not. They're probably advertising fighting skills with MAYBE an occasional lecture on not being a jerk and paying attention to what's going on around you.
     
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  20. Aiki Lee

    Aiki Lee Master of Arts

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    So Steve, would it be accurate of me to say that you believe a person in any field no matter how knowledgeable or well trained should not be considered an expert because they have not performed their skills under real conditions?123
     

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