Don't Fight, End It!

Discussion in 'General Self Defense' started by Zoran, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. Zoran

    Zoran Black Belt

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    Something I posted on my facebook blog that I feel fits well into the self defense section here. Hope you like it.

    I've been an instructor for many years now and have worked as a bouncer and in security. I've had my fair share of "fights" and had a few hair raising experiences. As such, I try to bring what I have learned in the real world, into the class room. Because of this, from time to time I hear and sometimes have to use the word "fight" and every time I do, it gives me the heebie-jeebies.

    So What's Wrong with the Word Fight?

    First, words are not just a term that has a definition. Words are tied to experiences, culture, and invokes an image in one's mind. You will hear the word "fight" used to describe a Boxing match, MMA, 2 guys in a parking lot circling each other exchanging blows, a sparring match, a woman fighting off a rapist. Do you start seeing the ambiguity yet? So if I tell a student that I am teaching them how to "fight", the image in their mind may be of themselves stepping back into a fighting stance, making a waasaa sound, and bouncing around like Bruce Lee when he fought Chuck Norris in Return of the Dragon.

    For real world practical self defense, "fight" just may not fit the proper mindset. Why? Well you don't want to get into a "fight". Let the other guy do that. You want to end it!

    Isn't this just Semantics?

    As I said, words are tied to a mental image. Those of us that have been in the martial arts for a while know how important proper visualization and mindset is. The inexact science of Psychology has had many experiments on the connection between the mind and the body. In the ones that I have read about, there is very little difference between the 2.

    So here is what it comes down to. If there is very little difference with the mind and the body, then training one way, while your mindset may be in a different place, will create confusion when you need your training to help you survive a threat. This confusion can mean disaster.

    What should our Mindset be?

    During training and a real world threat, your mind set should be to; "Do what you need to do to end the threat quickly, no more, no less". Don't fight, don't spar, don't play around, and don't worry about anything else! Remove the threat and get out. End it.

    Anyways, I hope this article is of some use. Just as a note, this article only covers a small part of a bigger whole. I does not cover proper self defense training and visualization techniques one may use.
     
  2. seasoned

    seasoned MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Very good post, it definitely describes the differences between sport and the true meaning of preservation arts. Visualization, is an important part of life, starting the day out with a positive attitude makes for a lot better day. But, starting out a self defense situation with the, I will win attitude, could get you hurt. This also lends itself to loosing. This visualization of destroying the threat, is what, IMO, most dojo have lost the concept of. :asian:
     
  3. celtic_crippler

    celtic_crippler Senior Master

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    Great posts!

    Of course, I'm biased because this goes along with my basic mind-set on the subject. LOL
     
  4. gakusei

    gakusei Yellow Belt

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    I agree.

    Reminds me of the quote, "It is only a fight when you want to stop but can't."

    Control and end the situation quickly.
     
  5. Gaius Julius Caesar

    Gaius Julius Caesar Black Belt

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    Very nice.

    This goes with why I don't like the word Self Defense, it fosters a defensive mindset.

    I prefer Self Protection, Counter assult or counter attack.

    My late Sempai used a phrase from his Military training all the time.
    "Don't make it a fight, make it murder."

    What he ment is that you are seeking the most efficient way to end hostilities and put threat out.

    Shugyo!
     
  6. Zoran

    Zoran Black Belt

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    Back in my early days of training, I had it told to me; "There are no winners in a fight, only a loser(s)."

    What I took away from that, and my experiences, ultimately brought me to the current philosophy for training and mindset. The win, win attitude could get you killed.
     
  7. tallgeese

    tallgeese Green Belt

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    I'm not disagreeing with your point at all. In fact, I think you're dead on about the mindset aspect of all this.

    Still, I think it's just semantics after a point. Don't you "fight" to end things? I'd say so, at least in my mind. If putting an attack to bad guys person is classified as fighting it seems like this makes sense.

    Still, just words. I agree with the thought process.
     
  8. seasoned

    seasoned MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    You hit on a very good point within your thread. This is why point sparring, all but ruin the true spirit of budo. You sound like a true warrior, and to be one, as you know, one has to train like one. Nowadays martial arts is fun, for the most part. I must say though, it wasn't always like that. When I came up through the ranks I liked training but I can't really say it was fun. Classes were 2 hours long and you were there for pain, and you learned how to deal it out, and also deal with it. This in my mind is the ingredients for the "end it" mentality. I hope to see you around the board more often.
     
  9. hkfuie

    hkfuie Purple Belt

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    Nice thread!

    Yeah, it is semantics, and usually I am bored by such discussions. But it seems too easy for things to slide into mediocrity in martial arts (and any area of life, actually), so I appreciate this discussion. I am going to be changing some of my terminology. And every time I use one of these words I will be reminded of the differences discussed here.
     
  10. Guardian

    Guardian Black Belt

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    There are no winners, just survivors. I don't mind a win attitude as long as it's kept in perspective, there is nothing wrong a win attitude now and then.

    I'm curious, some have said visualize destroying the threat, isn't that the same as winning or having that win attitude, you can't seperate the two meanings. Your visualization is a win right?

    I say win a fight, someone says visualize destroying the threat. A play of words, both have the same outcome in my view.

    Just my view on it unless I'm missing the entire thought behind this post and if so, I apologize.
     
  11. Zoran

    Zoran Black Belt

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    The word is not the issue, it's what one visualizes that is. The article is from an instructor's perspective. You may visualize one thing when you use the words fight or win, but others may not. As an instructor, you can not assume your student is visualizing the same thing just because you are. So as an instructor, you should make sure your language imparts what you are trying to get across.

    Also, winning suggests a competition. Self defense is not a competition. Walking away in one peace is not a prize.
     
  12. BLACK LION

    BLACK LION Black Belt

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    I am biased also;)


    I see it as having nothing to do fighting to win as in a social or even asocial setting. Rather, having everything to do with me affording them the opportunity to meet overwhelming violence and imminent doom. Emanating a harbringer of thier demise if you will.

    Its never a fight when it can cost your life.
     
  13. Guardian

    Guardian Black Belt

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    Ok, I'm seeing what your saying here, but with all respect your saying the same thing, visualize ending the threat, that's a win, win doesn't necessarily mean competition, winning a war is not a competition, but it's used as we did in the Double Ds, we won which in no way reflected the the war as a competition to me and my brothers/sisters in arms (just saying here).

    I understand what you are trying to get across, but during all my years, I believe in the KISS method of instructing people and when I taught my folks, it was to win and walk away with as little damage as possible (would I call it a prize, I agree with you there, but I'm sorry, I'm going to disagree with the analogy put down for they don't mean the same, for they do in my view.
     
  14. Zoran

    Zoran Black Belt

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    And that is fine. World would be pretty boring if everyone agreed with me.
     
  15. Deaf Smith

    Deaf Smith Master of Arts

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    Self defense is survival. Just how you survive may very well depend on far more than just your fist or feet or gun. The goal is to survive.

    Wither you end it now or in 10 minutes is not the problem. Many a person (and country) as tried to end it right then, thinking the 'quick end' would be to the other person and not themselves. Only to be supprised the 'quick end' was for themselves.

    I'm more of a Miyamoto Musashi man at this:

    "The spirit is to win, whatever the weapon and whatever its size." And to take it farther, "what ever the method."

    That and I'm a Vince Lombardi fan (I'f you've ever heard his speaches and writings you would know what I mean.)

    But I’m not there to fight, I’m there to survive and win any way I can. If that means having a bit of patience, then so be it.

    Deaf
     
  16. Guardian

    Guardian Black Belt

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    Amen to that my friend. LOL
     
  17. BLACK LION

    BLACK LION Black Belt

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    +1

    story of my life :)
     
  18. still learning

    still learning Senior Master

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    Hello, Great post! Martial arts...true training is learning how to "end it"...

    ...off course...NOT getting into a situtions...and learning to be humble is better.....

    yet there will be times...ONE needs to "end it" .....WE LIKE THIS WORDS...says' it all for martial artist...

    Thank-you...".END IT" ....Needs to be shouted out!

    Aloha,123
     

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