Do you prefer sparring with women or men?

Discussion in 'Women of the Martial Arts (Women Martial Artists)' started by AmyA19881, Jan 28, 2019.

  1. AmyA19881

    AmyA19881 White Belt

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    My Krav Maga class is probably 90% men which makes it sometimes difficult to practice with women. I prefer sparring with women because I'm on the smaller side and most of the guys are alot bigger than me.

    What do you prefer?
     
  2. Danny T

    Danny T Senior Master

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    I prefer sparring with persons who are better than me. What their sex is irrelevant. If they are better than me, let’s dance.
     
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  3. Christopher Adamchek

    Christopher Adamchek Green Belt

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    Anyone who will spar with me
     
  4. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    which is possibly who you should be sparring with, other wise you will get quite good at fighting small women, which though they make up a fair % of the population, are not generally the most immediate threat to you.
     
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  5. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    ^^This.

    My favorite sparring is for the purpose of getting better. I need someone who threatens my defenses to do that. I tend to prefer sparring bigger people, because I feel more threatened by them (at a gut level), and it does me good to deal with that. But if a big guy is not better than me, I'll get comfortable fast. I'd rather spar someone who is harder to fight, over someone who is bigger.
     
  6. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Just an added note. For casual sparring to work on basic movement and to practice using techniques (what I usually refer to as "light, technical sparring"), as long as your partner is relatively skilled, that works. In fact, it might be preferable to work with someone of similar size, reach, weight, etc. to eliminate those as factors. But for sparring to test your ability - testing your defenses, etc. - especially if self-defense is your purpose for training, you'll want someone bigger if you have a choice.
     
  7. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    I prefer to spar with anyone who’s going to make me better. There are several men and women at my dojo who make me better.

    There’s a woman who’s a phenomenal kicker. She can pick her leg up and slap me silly in the face with it. Defending that makes me better.

    There’s a woman who’s got the best “vision” I’ve ever seen - she knows what I’m going to do it before I do, and has already countered and hit me at least twice before I finish a punch. That makes me better.

    Stuff like that helps regardless of gender. Doesn’t matter if I’m stronger or weaker than them. They’re better than me at different things, and being able to deal with what they’re doing forces me to work harder.
     
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  8. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    I kind of have my favorites. Depending on how I am feeling at the time.

    If I know a dog fight is coming up. I may take someone a bit easier as a rest before hand.
     
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  9. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    And when you’re in the heat of camp, you take the most difficult ones. Better yet, the best ones who fight like your opponent does. Then you taper off towards the end of camp.
     
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  10. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Doesn't matter to me as long as they're not acting like idiots. Also sparring with bigger is a lot better because if you're attacked 9 out of 10 it'll be by a bigger person because those kind of people are cowards. So sparring big people gets you used to it, you spar with people your size all the time you won't be ready for a big person
     
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  11. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    We normally just either do a round each. Or a minute each and just really mess the person up.
     
  12. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    I quite like sparring with children, they are fast and completely random. :D
     
  13. Gnarlie

    Gnarlie Master of Arts

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    And you can put your hand on their forehead to stop them reaching you. :D

    Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk
     
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  14. Ivan

    Ivan Yellow Belt

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    I find it a bad idea to put a specific filter on who to spar. I do prefer to spar people who are on my level or better than me so I can improve, although I believe that sparring anyone will help you develop your skills.

    If I spar against someone bigger than me, which is quite frequent due to my age, I will concentrate on using skills I've already learnt to dismantle and essentially give my opponent a hard time.

    However, I think it is important to spar against someone younger/smaller and/or less experienced/skilled. It teaches me to control my power which is useful for any sort of altercation; if I get attacked by someone smaller than me in the street, then obviously I don't want to treat him/her like I'm fighting a 7 foot giant. Also sparring these types of people ^ allows me to make more mistakes as I try to incorporate new techniques I have learnt or new tactics.
     
  15. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I also find untrained (even unskilled) people present different problems. Their changes in power and speed are more erratic, and their approach can be less predictable. There are things that work really well against them that don't present with trained folks, and even sometimes things that never have an opportunity against an untrained person.
     
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  16. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    Plus I can honestly say I can kick to head height again!

    In all honesty spar with everyone you can, you will always learn something.
     
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  17. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    The good thing about sparring with people with no training is they don’t “play by the rules.” Classmates play by the rules, actual rules and unwritten rules. MAists outside of your organization and even style play by the rules, agreed upon and unspoken. People without training have far less rules because they don’t know them. Sure, if they’re normal human beings they’re not going to do stuff like punch you in the nuts, but beyond stuff like that they’re not set in any molds. Of course there’s downsides to it, like how skilled are they, but there’s plenty of upside to it too.

    I get frustrated by some people who just got their sparring gear and just started actual contact sparring. They do some crazy stuff and most of the time I know I could drop them with one well placed hard shot. It’s like they’re begging for it. But not doing that and trying to make other stuff work teaches you quite a bit. If it’s frustrating, I’m learning from it.
     
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  18. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    I have much the same problem playing , bad chess player, they keep doing things I hadn't predicted they would do and messing my plans up, give me a computer any time, you know what there going to do most of the time
     
  19. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    Good analogy.
     
  20. Orion Nebula

    Orion Nebula Orange Belt

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    It's been a while since I sparred on a regular basis, but I never had a preference for men or women when sparring. I definitely preferred certain people, usually those similar in skill to me or just a bit better than me. The fight would go on longer and I feel like I built better skills that way. Sparring with someone much less experienced always felt odd - I didn't wan't to destroy them but I didn't want to go so easy on them that it was obvious.

    I felt a lot like this during the past week. I am just returning to the MA and my sparring skills are currently awful. However, I was at a college karate class getting in some extra training and we did some free sparring. Students are all over the spectrum in terms of skills level and style. It wasn't exactly no contact - more experienced students were encouraged to make some light contact and knock down opponents if both parties felt comfortable. Most students had a good read on each other, but this one gal went ham on everyone (although not necessarily because she just started contact sparring - maybe she just had a bone to pick with her classmates). When we sparred, she used a lot of spinning back kicks. It was effective because I'm slow and clumsy right now, but if I had a bit more skill and speed, it would have been easy to take her down during one of those kicks - she was a bit slow executing them and spent too much time looking away from me.
     

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