sparring

Discussion in 'Ninjutsu' started by samuelpont, Feb 2, 2005.

  1. Grey Eyed Bandit

    Grey Eyed Bandit Master of Arts

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    It isn't, but you're trying to compare apples with wolverines. You need to have a good technical expertise first, and we all know how hard that can be to attain within the Bujinkan.

    Not if you take into account the factor that he reportedly became a priest "to pray for the souls of the men he killed".
    He had all the technical skill possible already when he engaged in those matches. Most in the Bujinkan who would spar do not. Get my point?

    I think randori is fun as hell. You just have to know how to use it in a good manner.
     
  2. samuelpont

    samuelpont Guest

    any time sweet heart!
     
  3. Tenjin

    Tenjin Guest

    If you want to really spar to reflect real fighting I have some drills for you.

    First pick five random sparring partners that you see on at least a weekly basis and give them permission to attack you at any time with any weapon out of the blue with no warning. It would still sadly be artificial, but actually in the line with a real fight. Who stands up and lets you know they are going to attack you if they really want to do you harm?

    Squaring up with someone one on one and exchanging pulled blows is just MA masturbation. As some have stated there are other ways to increase the difficulty and get similar results from drills and free response (the closest thing we have to sparring).

    I've sparred with guys from other martial arts, both buddies and in fight nights that a local school used to have and its just fake. It might make you feel good, might give you a warm fuzzy but its just fake. I carry a knife around me all the time, ditto for a really nice metal ink pen and in a "real conflict/fight/confrontation" I will not hesitate to use whatever I can weapon wise and terrain wise to make sure I go home and the other guy doesn't.

    From my experience sparring, as we are talking about here, rarely takes into account vital factors for combat such as multiple attackers, suprise, weapons, or strategy.

    In the end, if Hatsumi tells us to spar I'll spar, until then you have either have to trust your teacher and your teacher's teacher or just find another martial art to do. To paraphrase Sensei, we are training for real combat not for sport.
     
  4. r erman

    r erman Green Belt

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    I do this and variations thereof all the time...
     
  5. Tenjin

    Tenjin Guest

    Must be hell on your furniture and your office space. Personally if I were one of your five people for this I would get you while you were taking a piss or sitting on the toilet.
     
  6. r erman

    r erman Green Belt

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    Urine in the eye is a hell of a deterent:wink:

    Ok, all the time is an exageration. But I do enjoy this kind of scenario training, and fwiw, I think it more important than facing off and 'sparring'--as long as it is treated seriously and the attacker fights back.
     
  7. Shogun

    Shogun Master Black Belt

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    Is defending yourself while you are on the toilet common practice in the Booj? lol.

    Honestly, several of the people that have posted about how a fight goes, obviously, dont know how a fight goes. people dont try and assassinate you unexpectedly on a regular basis (not in Washington anyway;)
    Out of the fights that I have been in, (varying degrees of violence) none have been even close to the same thing.
     
  8. r erman

    r erman Green Belt

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    The types of attacks you will face sometimes depend on your line of work... Also, unless you take things very personal or have an attitude yourself, most 'fights' rarely start from two people facing off.

    In the handful of fights I've been in only one actually started with me squaring off with the other guy--and that was the one fight I got into becuase of ego more than anything else.
     
  9. KyleShort

    KyleShort Green Belt

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    What's funny to me is that in all of my posts I argue that sparring trains attributes. I never claim that it trains for real world scenarios. In truth there is no way to train for them...you can only train attributes and skills that can be dynamically applied when the occasion arises.

    Most of the counter posts seem to argue that sparring does not train for violent, suprise attacks etc...and you know what...I don't care. Stop action, scenario training does not train that fully either. The point is that both types of training develop critical attributes and neither should be ignored IMO.
     
  10. Grey Eyed Bandit

    Grey Eyed Bandit Master of Arts

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    I don't think anyone has said otherwise, but ambushes of all kinds do still regularly occur around the world. It's the same if a guy comes up to you and asks for a cigarette, you reply that you haven't got any and he swings at you. If your will to end the confrontation and/or get away is stronger than your will to slug it out with the guy, it's a self defense situation, not a fight.
     
  11. Dale Seago

    Dale Seago Black Belt

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    They do in the work I & my wife do for a living. . . or more accurately, they may try to hit the people the company we work for is engaged to protect.
     
  12. DWeidman

    DWeidman Blue Belt

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    Let's face some reality here...

    If someone has time and patience - skill and determination -- AND wants to kill you... They almost ALWAYS kill you... And it is SenSenNoSen - you never even know they are there until you are dead.

    So - how do you train for that scenario? You don't. You train to trust your instincts - you learn to be more observant than your average bear -- you learn to be careful when you move... etc etc etc. And at what price??? Lets be honest here... Unless you are in Dale's line of work - how many of you walk outside with body armor on? Isn't it safer to be wearing Kevlar everyday? Even with that said - how often does Dale wear body armor?

    Does anyone think their training emcompasses being "ready" for a Marc "the animal" MacYoung style street attack?

    So - what are you learning in class - and what is the level that you train to defend against? THAT IS THE SALIENT QUESTION...

    I train to deal with a known attack - from known attackers (not that I know exactly what is coming - but just that I am somehow prompted that something is about to start...). I don't assume I will have the entire situation under control before it starts - just that training for an UNKNOWN attack from UNKNOWN attackers - leaves so much detail out that the scenarios are useless. I rely on my instincts to guide me - as there isn't ANYTHING I can do proactively in that situation. As such - I can't (by definition of the work UNKNOWN) train for such an event.

    That is the level I train for. My "sparring" and free response deals with that scenario. I am VERY honest, however, with MYSELF -- that the "sparring" style training is a LEARNING tool only - and that I make no correlation between it and the real thing.

    I suspect the vast majority of us who train in the art use "free response" drills - but we all have a theoretical disagreement with anyone who claims that those drills "PREPARE" you for the real deal (which is what this thread was started about). They are a training aid - plain and simple. They MAY prepare you for something - or they may HINDER you. The "dueling / sparring" mindset is ultimately about ego - which has a whole series of negative effects as well...

    For those of you who spar - how many of you actively think about what BAD habits (including mental frames of reference) you accumulate along the way? The vast majority of guys who spar who I talk to claim the exact opposite. Sparring lets them know what "really" works - it is the proving grounds for their techniques.

    And that - in essence - is myopic with rather terminal consequences...

    -Daniel Weidman
     
  13. Dale Seago

    Dale Seago Black Belt

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    Yep. The main focus of EP training, and the operational planning and execution of the job, are primarily on making it difficult for the Bad Guys to find or create a good opportunity to attempt the Bad Thing. Attack On Principal (AOP) drills and tactics are important, but they're something you truly hope you never have to execute.

    Yep again. I incorporate a lot of "free response" stuff in the context of kata training. So does Hatsumi sensei. When he calls a senior instructor up on stage (or wherever) to demonstrate something, for example, if he wants to see the "base" form he'll say so. Otherwise, in my experience what he wants to see is a spontaneous application of the principles/concepts of the form -- the lessons the kata is actually "about" -- as a way of evaluating whether you actually grasp what he's showing. He does not want to see you try to mimic something he just did.

    Since this year's Booj focus has to do with Gyokko ryu, let's take a look at its first kata, Koku. Someone with little or no training would look at it and say, "Okay, so uke punches at tori; tori evades/receives the punch and then wallops hell out of uke's arm; uke follows up with a skipping-in front kick, tori evades it and kicks his leg and then nails him with a boshi ken thrust. Simple enough, cool, I got that."

    From my perspective there's a little more there.

    First of all, this one is explicitly about use of space – that’s even implicit in its name.

    It also is NOT about “self-defense”, though that’s not to say its movement and concepts can’t be used that way. There’s no “surprise assault” occurring: This is a case of two warriors engaged in mutual combat, who both already know it’s “on”.

    You could also consider it sort of an “intelligence gathering” kata. First, uke punched when and where he did because of the information tori feeds him through his distance, positioning, etc. After receiving uke’s punch, tori performs ken-kudaki and smashes the hell out of uke’s arm, but does not immediately move in to exploit the opening which may have been created. Instead he tries to determine what he’s really facing -- what the opponent’s further intentions, hidden weapons, etc. may be – by continuing to move in a way that also narrows down uke's “logical” range of choices. Tori moves at an angle and distance which makes a skipping-in kick with the leading leg the “best” (easiest) choice if he wants to continue his attack – the space “looks right for it” from his perspective. Uke doesn’t HAVE to do that, of course; he could just go home and nurse his possibly-broken arm and listen to his buddies laugh about what a wuss he is. He also COULD do something other than that kick. However, tori is already moving in such a way as to easily deal with the kick if it comes; and any other attack will be from a less optimal position and be even easier for tori to observe and deal with.

    So you move in such a way as to “invite” the kick, and deal with it (or whatever else) in a way which will create a condition enabling you to in some way deal with the attacker decisively.

    This, to me, is the essence of the kata, and the specific way any or all of this manifests after the initial punch is launched is infinitely variable.

    And that's what we work up to dealing with. And so far I'm only talking about the unarmed taijutsu kata; this year we're doing all kinds of applications with rokushakubo and tachi as well.

    It's still Koku, but there's room for all kinds of wild free-response stuff within that space. :)
     
  14. Grey Eyed Bandit

    Grey Eyed Bandit Master of Arts

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    Absolutely, the key word here is "combat".:)
     
  15. Tenjin

    Tenjin Guest

    No, I was trying (poorly I guess) to counterpoint the idea that sparring somehow prepares you for "combat" despite the fact its pretty much always two guys squaring up in a dojo.

    Many people think that you can not learn to fight/defend yourself/whatever, without sparring. I simply disagree.

    Again sparring rarely takes into account weapons, does not have the "feel" of a life and death struggle, and does not take into account realistic variables such as weapons, suprise attacks, multiple opponents, terrain, type of clothing worn, etc. Outside of scratching your ego, and occasionally getting or giving a bloody nose I still don't see the point.

    Please keep in mind I'm not comparing sparring to any other type of training, I'm just stating why I don't feel its needed in the Bujinkan, or "ninjutsu" if you will.

    If I wanted to spar I would join a sport art.
     
  16. DWeidman

    DWeidman Blue Belt

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    Before I reply - let me first ask you to define "sparring".

    If your version is like my version - free response drills at realistic speeds with full intent - then it is best that you don't train in them. In fact - the fewer the better overall.

    ...Makes me feel better about what I train for...

    -Daniel
     
  17. KyleShort

    KyleShort Green Belt

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    Hi Daniel,

    I think that is at the heart of the matter.

    Semantics.

    The opponents of sparring on this thread seem to all define sparring as two people squarinng off under sporting conditions/rules.

    However I (a proponent) and others would define sparing as dynamic attack & defense with one or more aggressive & resisting opponents.

    This would include sparring with weapons, sparring multiple opponents (3,4...), sparring in the dark, attacked from a blindside etc...
     
  18. Cryozombie

    Cryozombie Grandmaster

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    I ALWAYS wear my Kevlar when I am doing Repo work. While to this day I have only been shot at by a farmer using a bow and arrow, and that has only happened once, I still wont work without it.

    I also wear it if I am out and about on occasion... but no, not everyday.
     
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  19. Tenjin

    Tenjin Guest

    So in what you are talking about is their an uke and a tori, or is it everyman for himself? If its every man for himself and its at "realistic speeds" with "full intent" I'm just curious how many guys you have lost due to being seriously hurt.

    Which is what exactly?

    If you resist certain things, and you are working with "realistic speed" and intent things are going to get broken. Some joints only go so far, or one way and when you get people all junked up on adrenaline people are going to be sloppy and are going to get hurt or hurt someone else.

    Again if you like sparring, do it. If I wanted to spar I would go join my local TKD school, from what I hear they do allot of it.
     
  20. Kreth

    Kreth Grandmaster

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    I don't think Daniel is advocating full-on combat as sparring. Obviously, some sort of constraints need to be in place, especially with beginning students. But, I believe senior students can effectively spar with little to no injury, as they will develop a sense of how far to take things.
    As an aside, I have been uke for some of the Japanese shihan, and I have a habit of giving "real" attacks (as I don't feel someone skilled should need the sterotypical attack, ie. I punch, and just wait for them to complete their technique), and they have had me convinced that my elbow (for example) was about to be broken, yet no injury was done...

    Jeff123
     

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