Teaching beginners lots of moves

Discussion in 'Beginners Corner' started by PhotonGuy, May 6, 2017.

  1. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Grandmaster

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    This is probably a bigger issue for the fighting systems that we train. We have an uncommon way to make a fist in comparison to other many other systems. One would think making a fist would be easy to learn but it often causes difficulty as it forces people to break the habit of how they originally made a fist. The other problem with the type of fist that female beginners have is that somehow the grip in such a way that it angles the bones in the knuckles instead of lining them up correctly. It takes about 3 - 6 months of reminding new students and eventually it goes away as it becomes natural and replaces the old habit.

    I'm always telling students to take their time with learning the techniques and to not try to rush the learning process. There's a difference between a gifted student that learns fast and a student trying to force the learning process.
     
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  2. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Grandmaster

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    That's not how it works. There isn't a one size fits all technique. Lets take a look at all of the techniques that many kung fu practitioners know and yet for most of them, the only techniques that work best is a jab and round house. We often see this where the student can't use anything beyond that.

    I know with kung fu, the purpose of learning multiple techniques is so that the body naturally reacts when it's put in various positions. There have been 3 times that I can think of, where I used a kung fu technique without thinking. My body simply reacted because it recognized the position that it was in, and then my body just moved as if I was doing the solo drills. I didn't choose the technique. My body simply reacted in a way that was familiar..
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2017
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  3. DanT

    DanT 2nd Black Belt

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    Isn't that feeling amazing, when you almost do the form exactly, but in sparring or combat without actually thinking about doing it because your body is used to moving that way?
     
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  4. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Grandmaster

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    And this is why I like you.:)
     
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  5. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Grandmaster

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    yes it really is. It's one of the experiences that I really treasure. It's one of those things that create a huge boost in understanding martial arts. There's really no way to explain the enlightenment from it. But it will definitely make it clear, why techniques and forms are drilled numerous times.
     
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  6. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Grandmaster

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    Here's my real world perspective of a front kick. The ones that beginners know are in bold. The others are the ones that intermediate and advance students learn once they reach a certain level of "comfort and understanding" of the the technique. There is no way a beginner will have the skill, balance and mechanics to do all of these or even train all of these with any quality.

    Front Kick
    - Front kick to knee
    - Front kick to thigh
    - Front kick to stomach
    - Front kick to ribs
    - Front kick to heart
    - Front kick to chin
    - Front kick to standing leg
    - Front kick to the arms.
    - Front kick to the shoulder
    - Front kick with lead leg
    - Front kick with rear leg
    - Front kick moving forward
    - Front kick moving backwards
    - Front kick in high stance
    - Front kick in low stance
    - Front kick rear leg low stance
    - Front kick front leg low stance
    - Front kick from cat stance
    - Font kick into a cross stance
    - Front kick after untwist from cross stance.
    - Front kick to groin
    - Power front kick
    - Quick front kick (used like a jab but with a kick)
    - Delay front kick.
    - Downward front kick
     
  7. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    Well in the examples above, in my style a beginner would start with learning to throw a front kick with the rear leg to the stomach. That's the basics to throwing a front kick and you learn that before you learn any of the other variations that you mention above. And even if you do get to be really advanced and you use the front kick as one of your primary techniques you will most likely still practice the front kick with the rear leg to the stomach most of the time and sometimes you might practice any of the other variations you mention. As for the front kick from the high stance and the power front kick, I am not familiar with those specific techniques or if I am they are not the same kinds of names that they use in my style. Each style can vary in the names that it gives the techniques, even if the techniques are identical.

    Anyway, from my experience I can say that as a white belt you learn most of the techniques you will use as a martial artist. I would say as much as ninety percent of what you will use you learn within your first few belts, or at least the basics of what you will use.
     
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  8. Hyoho

    Hyoho Black Belt

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    In Japan, beginners make tea and watch.
     
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  9. EMT

    EMT Yellow Belt

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    Nope. It is better if you focus on a few basic techniques and then introduce more complicated moves one-by-one to your training routine until it becomes natural to use them in a sparring
     
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  10. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I've always liked the idea of a beginner's class. I actually put my curriculum together with that concept in mind, though my program is too small (too few students, and too few classes) to actually implement a different set of classes.
     
  11. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Depending how long you stay at each rank, I don't consider that a lot of techniques. 8 techniques at white belt is pretty sparse, unless they'll only be there a few weeks.
     
  12. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I've found that the culture of the individual school and the attitude of the instructor influence this a lot. I was never much driven to get rank (except when someone I didn't like was about to get theirs, but that's a personal failing of mine). My students tend to not be very focused on the ranks, either. I eventually tell them it's time to test. Rarely do they even bother to ask what they need to do to be ready for their next test/rank.

    I'm not touting this approach as something I did well. I didn't expect this result, and am not sure what I did to encourage it (I wish I did). I just focused on the progressive application, and so they did, too.
     
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  13. wingchun100

    wingchun100 Senior Master

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    I would tweak what you said just a little bit: give too few, and they will get bored! LOL

    And of course, not grasping the overall concept is a good point too.
     
  14. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    See, this whole thing about the student getting bored, maybe leaving and stuff. Maybe we ought to consider the idea that there just isn't all that much to this stuff. We don't need to apprentice ourselves to someone for the better part of a lifetime to learn this. It can be learned somewhat quickly, although developing skill takes a long time and a lot of practice. But there isn't a good reason for a big curriculum beyond keeping paying customers. Maybe a healthier and more honest approach is to acknowledge that there is this body of principles and concepts that are taught through the medium of a smallish body of useful techniques, and that is it, that's the end to the formal instruction. What you do with it is now up to you, and you shouldn't need more than maybe five years to learn that. If it takes longer than that, then maybe there is a lot of clutter in there, and a lot of filler, and a lot of things that are not necessary and some stuff that might even be a bit stupid.
     
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  15. Touch Of Death

    Touch Of Death Sr. Grandmaster

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    You should really use the term, un-useful. o_O
     
  16. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    Sometimes the term stupid hits the mark better.:)
     
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  17. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    Alright, not every student does care about earning rank. The way I see it, there is nothing wrong with a student not wanting to earn rank and there is also nothing wrong if a student does want to earn rank. As it is, even within a school rank is not a perfect method of reflecting a student's skill level. However, even if you don't care to advance, advancing in rank sooner or later might be a good idea if for any reason to learn the more advanced stuff. Some of the more advanced techniques, and particularly some of the more advanced katas you might not learn until you reach the appropriate belt level.
     
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  18. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    The best stuff is the fundamentals and foundation you learn as a beginner. That is the most useful. Our most basic form in my system is the best of the bunch.
     
  19. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    Well when you learn the basic techniques as a beginner, techniques such as front kick, side kick, reverse punch, jab punch, ect. what you're learning is the foundation for those techniques. A beginner who is learning the front kick will be working on certain aspects of the technique and a more advanced student will be working on other aspects about the front kick that only an advanced student would understand. A more advanced student will also know more advanced techniques but usually will not use them that much. As you said the best stuff is the basics, the foundation. What you learn as a beginner makes up most of what you will use for your entire career. The stuff you need the most is the stuff you're taught first.
     
  20. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    Ok, so what is your conclusion, then?123
     
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