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  1. pgsmith

    Tameshigiri video guide - part VI

    Hey Jarek, Nicely done video as always! A couple of critiques for you … 1) When you stop the cut between the targets, your next cut should ideally begin with the kissaki in the same place. Looking at your video, you stop in the correct place, but then you pull back the kissaki to give...
  2. pgsmith


    Hey Eric, Here's the advice I give to new students encountering seiza for the first time ... Practice helps. Since westerners don't use this position, it takes a while to acclimate the body. Practice at home on the carpet while watching television, but only for a short time each. It will...
  3. pgsmith

    Martial arts sayings or proverbs

    "slow is smooth, smooth is fast" "Always keep the sharp side and the pointy end between you and the other guy!"
  4. pgsmith

    Looking to get started

    That bit right there needs to be repeated often. A large number of people ask about what school is better, and what art is best for this or that. The reality is that a great many people start martial arts and then drop out. Finding one that you enjoy going to and being a part of will help to...
  5. pgsmith

    Tameshigiri Video guide part V

    Hey Jarek, I like the vid, it is very nicely done as are all the ones you've posted. You seem to have a handle on a number of things that you need to work on. Here is something that you didn't address so I don't know if you noticed it ... in all three cuts, you have a tendency to draw THEN cut...
  6. pgsmith

    Black Belt Essay

    Something else to consider is that a good part of martial arts training is to teach the practitioner how to deal with situations that cause anxiety and stress. I've never had to write an essay personally, but I've been graded in a couple of martial arts that require one to stand up and perform...
  7. pgsmith

    A fist is more powerful than a impact weapon strike. What is going on?

    For the same reason that the majority of people put things on Youtube ... to get people to notice and pay attention to them. Based on your review (thanks for saving me from having to watch any of it!), he's obviously not going to get anyone to pay attention to him for his martial prowess. :)
  8. pgsmith

    Tameshigiri Video Guide Part IV

    No, it's really not hard to tell, and it's not about how fast you can do the cuts. A good cut of a single target like that one depends mainly upon two factors, blade alignment (hasuji) and tip speed. Your hasuji is very good, but it is easy to see that your tip speed is not as good as it could...
  9. pgsmith

    Tameshigiri Video Guide Part IV

    The video is very nicely done! I like the slow and stop motion, so it is easy to see what's happening. As I've pointed out in your previous videos, you are using too much upper body and not enough center in your cuts. It's easy to critique your posture during this cut because of the direction...
  10. pgsmith

    Can you do this?

    We were playing Trivial Pursuit (that dates me!) with the neighbors a long while back. The question was ... Who played Quasimodo in the 1956 movie "The Hunchback of Notre Dame". In answer, our neighbor Debbie said "I have no idea as I've never been a college football fan!" o_O
  11. pgsmith

    Can you do this?

    There, I fixed it for you ... :)
  12. pgsmith

    Tameshigiri video guide Part III

    Tatami is used for tameshigiri because of the amount of knowledge that can be gained through cutting it. It requires significant tip speed and blade alignment in order to cut through, and the angle of the cuts as well as where the cut pieces fall can tell a lot about the practitioner. Cutting...
  13. pgsmith

    Fun thread - if I were to do my kata in your style, how would it look?

    Keep your limbs to yourself, and add a sword. :) It's interesting that this is exactly what is taught in the Japanese sword arts. It's all about taking and controlling the center. We are taught that whoever does so will be able to kill the other guy.
  14. pgsmith

    Advancement time in judo

    And that's how you get ignored. :)
  15. pgsmith

    Advancement time in judo

    Sorry I can't give you any insight into judo belts and advancement, but I can ask the obvious question "what is IT to you?" Whether it is worth it or not depends entirely upon just what you consider "it" to be. If you're hoping to get on the US Olympic judo team, then once a week is absolutely...
  16. pgsmith

    Small library of misc Japanese Marial Arts related PDFs

    However, since you're talking about Ashida Kim, the analogy would be more like keeping your fertilizer with the dairy. Didn't read the article so it may have explained it, but the gist is that eggs have a natural coating that seals the shell and keeps out bacteria. Washing them compromises...
  17. pgsmith

    Self Defense in a McDonald's in Arkansas

    I disagree also. Actual fighting is a last resort when discussing self-defense. If a person is waiting to be attacked before thinking defensively, then it's a clear indicator that they've only been trained in fighting, not self-defense. Of course, that's just my opinion.
  18. pgsmith


    I think he's absolutely correct! Good on you Clyde, just punch those bullets when they shoot at you! :)
  19. pgsmith

    Karate's Breaking/Tameshiwari was influenced by Korean power circus, Mas Oyama (Choi), Kooksundo

    Ummm ... so? I read a good portion of what you wrote, but couldn't seem to find any point to it. What are you trying to prove with all of your facts? It seems to me that you have a very large chip on your shoulder, but I can't see what it is.
  20. pgsmith

    Tameshigiri guide part II

    Nice video! You can improve that cut by keeping your weight centered. When you cut you are bending at the waist and so using upper body strength to move the sword around rather than using your center and guiding the momentum. It is possible to see the moment that you disengaged your center at...
  21. pgsmith

    Knight Fights

    Not suggesting they aren't skilled. My eldest son does SCA heavy combat, and he has had to train pretty hard to get good at it. That's why I was asking the question "skilled at what?" Many people look at this and say "look, historical fighting!" but it isn't. The only time you had fighting such...
  22. pgsmith

    Knight Fights

    The big question there is "skilled at what?" I can't see the video from work, but from the pictures it looks like SCA heavy fighting except with blunt steel instead of rattan. I imagine the "experts" performing in the show are probably SCA fighters. If you are talking about experienced HEMA...
  23. pgsmith

    Close Quarter Knife Throws

    That wasn't funny ... not funny at all! :) Please point out where anyone mentioned "stuffing their pockets with red pepper". Exaggerate much? I know people right now that live in areas where pepper spray should be carried, but can't afford to buy it themselves. You are welcome to beat...
  24. pgsmith

    Close Quarter Knife Throws

    Then it's just like using the urinal after cutting up habanero peppers! (a friend of mine did that, made a great story!)
  25. pgsmith

    Close Quarter Knife Throws

    Hmmmmm .... I know a number of individuals, none of whom are 15 by the way, that always carry pepper spray with them. For that matter, many police forces have their officers carry pepper spray. Pepper spray IS the modern version of a pocketful of ground red pepper, so I'm not really sure why you...
  26. pgsmith

    A Reason Why Rank Might Be Important

    This is the Japanese view of shodan (first degree black belt) as espoused by a number of senior level Japanese martial arts instructors that I have discussed this with in the past. Shodan indicates that a proponent has learned the basics of the art, and can now begin learning the underlying and...
  27. pgsmith

    Book review - Fight Like a Physicist

    Jeff, You'd scare the bejeebus out of most of the physicists I've met! (and quite a few non-physicists also!) :)
  28. pgsmith

    Book review - Fight Like a Physicist

    Thanks for the review, I'll have to put it on my "to read" list. However, I've worked with a number of physicists, and not a one of them could have won a fight with a one-legged mannequin! :)
  29. pgsmith

    Close Quarter Knife Throws

    Just to add a tidbit to the conversation, the Kage ryu (who use tremendously huge swords!) have taught their proponents to accurately throw their short sword in order to give them time to draw their long sword since the mid 1600's.
  30. pgsmith

    Letting Them Up

    Wow, you grew up in a much different neighborhood than mine! In my neighborhood (back in the 60's, 70's), you never wanted to go to the ground because then the kicking would start. For some reason (perhaps because they were afraid of getting hit?) your opponent's friends would stand back and let...