Did a little training with Tony Dismukes

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JowGaWolf

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If you want to be a complete martial artist, it's all important:
  1. Test your striking against a striker
  2. Test your grappling against a striker
  3. Test your grappling against a grappler
  4. Test your striking against a grappler
  5. Test your ability to strike and grapple against someone else who knows how to both strike and grapple
For the session I was discussing, I was trying out certain new striking methods, so I was testing them against a boxer. If it had wanted to grapple and take him down I could have done so easily, but that wasn't the point of the exercise.
I think the term testing is used too often. It is almost as if it overrides learning. Even here there is a lot of talk about testing but very little about the learning process.
 

Kung Fu Wang

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I think the term testing is used too often. It is almost as if it overrides learning. Even here there is a lot of talk about testing but very little about the learning process.
By my definition,

- learning is through "partner drill",
- testing is through "sparring/wrestling".

This is learning.


This is testing.

 

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As he got used to the style of attack, he got progressively better at defending: slipping, rolling, ducking, blocking, intercepting, and countering. By the end of the second round, he was definitely outpointing me. Interestingly enough, he didn't come up with any new style of defense for dealing with the Jow Ga attacks. He kept to his standard boxing defense, but tightened it up significantly because he didn't want to get hit by more of those long fist haymakers. Honestly, it was some of the best head movement I've seen from him in sparring...

I stuck to the same handful of combos that I had practiced previously, and that cost me in the second round once Joe got used to those and started to be able to read them. Afterwards I thought of more ways I could have mixed it up and been less predictable.
Thanks for the details on your sparring and JGW for the explanations.


There are three strikes in the video.
1. long fist back fist. (clearing hand)
2. Long fist hook punch
Both are horizontal punches. A typical opponent reaction is to pull back to evade the punches.

Here's a similar punch found in boxing. Notice that they aren't off balance. If you feel off balance or awkward, then it's probably because of the footwork. Or you are pulling in trying to play defense and offense at the same time. But from what you described it seems like it may be footwork, since you didn't say anything about worrying about getting hit.
In that Floyd Mayweather vs Miguel Cotto fight, Floyd...

1. controls the space (hands).
2. throws a jab (straight punch).
3. follows with an overhand right (round or looping punch).

Control and Timing: Floyd gets Miguel to defend (position his hands in front) and shift his weight forward into the punch. If Floyd pulls the hand, it gives Miguel that much more time to react. It's also important to control the opponent's center and position, not only the lead hand.

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In these fights, there is no attempt to grab and pull the lead hand. The fighters punched the opponent without getting punched.

 
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JowGaWolf

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By my definition,

- learning is through "partner drill",
- testing is through "sparring/wrestling".

This is learning.


This is testing.

Learning is also through sparring because you learn how opponent's move and react to your techniques. This type of reaction cannot be learned through set partner drills. Which is why many kung fu practioners fail when they try to use the techniques outside of drills. They learn the movements of a technique but not the movements of an opponent. When I spar I also learn about my opponent and how he reacts. Sometimes I dedicate an entire sparring session just to learn and analyze what is be thrown at me.

Many people make learning about what they do to the opponent. But it's also about how the opponent reacts. Similar to how Tony's learned how to deal with the long fist punches and how Tony will need to learn the variations of the wheel punch and how to apply them to someone who tightens up. This can't be learned in drilling.

Kung Fu practitioners drill anti take downs with Style A vs Style A and fail when the first have to use it against Style B.

I was comfortable with dealing with Tony's attempt to gain a clinch and arm control. I didn't freak out and I was able to apply techniques. I didn't do well with the head locks because I haven't grappled with some one who is taller than me. As a result I kept making big mistakes which Tony helped me to correct. Drilling is helpful but only to a certain extent.

The most important thing with sparring is that it has to be light enough where you can afford to make mistakes.

Example: Tony had a chance to KO his boxing partner Had he done that then his partner doesn't get a chance to learn and make corrections. I'm sure his partner had the same opportunity to KO Tony but then that would make it impossible for Tony to learn through sparring.
 
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Kung Fu Wang

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Learning is also through sparring because you learn how opponent's move and react to your techniques.
Your definition of "learning" is different from mine.

In order for your opponent to react to your technique, you have to know how to do that technique first. If you know how to do a certain technique, you have already learned that technique. You just haven't tested that technique in all situations yet.
 
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Gerry Seymour

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Your definition of "learning" is different from mine.

In order for your opponent to react to your technique, you have to know how to do that technique first. If you know how to do a certain technique, you have already learned that technique. You just haven't tested that technique in all situations yet.
You shifted they to learning the technique. Learning to apply the technique (and recognize movement that leaves an opening for it) is as important as knowing the technique, itself. And thats hard to learn from set drills (since those arent giving the opponents natural reaction).
 

Kung Fu Wang

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You shifted they to learning the technique. Learning to apply the technique (and recognize movement that leaves an opening for it) is as important as knowing the technique, itself. And thats hard to learn from set drills (since those arent giving the opponents natural reaction).
The definition of sparring is your opponent won't give you the opportunity that you need. You have to create that opportunity yourself.

Can you learn hip throw by sparring with me while I lay down on the ground (I won't give you that opportunity. You can't create that opportunity either)?
 
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Gerry Seymour

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The definition of sparring is your opponent won't give you the opportunity that you need. You have to create that opportunity yourself.

Can you learn hip throw by sparring with me while I lay down on the ground (I won't give you that opportunity. You can't create that opportunity either)?
Why do you even present such ridiculous questions? It is entirely possible to spar within an agreed ruleset. And I dont have to tell you Im trying to find openings for a hip throw (and wouldnt if you were the type of partner whod be so uncooperative with my learning).
 
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JowGaWolf

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The definition of sparring is your opponent won't give you the opportunity that you need. You have to create that opportunity yourself.
Your definition is too strict. There are so many of examples where this is not true.
 
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Tony Dismukes

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In order for your opponent to react to your technique, you have to know how to do that technique first. If you know how to do a certain technique, you have already learned that technique. You just haven't tested that technique in all situations yet.
Learning the mechanics of how to move your body ("knowing" the technique in your lexicon) is only one step in the learning process. You also have to learn to read your opponent to understand the correct time and place to execute the technique, as well as the subtle adjustments that are required for your technique to work given your opponent's current stance and movement and energy and reaction to your technique. You also have to learn to control the adrenaline rush that can occur when you realize someone is hitting you for real. That's all part of the learning which should take place during sparring.
The definition of sparring is your opponent won't give you the opportunity that you need. You have to create that opportunity yourself.

Can you learn hip throw by sparring with me while I lay down on the ground (I won't give you that opportunity. You can't create that opportunity either)?
I'd say that's an incomplete definition of sparring. Let's say you want to spar to test your ability to punch me in the face. I respond by getting in a plane and flying to the other side of the globe. I've denied you the opportunity to punch me, but I don't think anyone would call that sparring.

Sparring is when we create a situation where we engage each other with conflicting objectives so that we can both test our ability to make certain techniques and tactics work, learn where our flaws are, how to execute our techniques better and how they can be countered.

You give the example of wanting to throw someone, but they lay down on the floor. You can avoid this issue by making a sparring ruleset where the first person to end up on the floor loses. Alternately, maybe the reason you want to throw someone is so that you get on top to punch or kick them while they are down. In that case you can make a ruleset where striking a downed opponent is allowable and if your opponent decides to just lay down then they have to deal with the fact that they've just given you an advantageous position.
 
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JowGaWolf

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Can you learn hip throw by sparring with me while I lay down on the ground (I won't give you that opportunity. You can't create that opportunity either)?
I could learn hip throw while you lay on the ground. First I'll work on my other techniques that I would use to attack someone who is laying on the ground. Then when you get tired of that and stand up, then I will practice my hip throw. A person who only thinks about creating opportunities will try to create the opportunity for a hip throw while you are laying on the ground.

For a person who is willing to take the opportunities that are willingly given by the opponent (you laying on the ground.), that person will take advantage of the other opportunities until the opportunity to try to hip toss you become available. If the opportunity for one technique is not present the look, then I should look for what is opportunity is present and take advantage of what my opponent is willing to give.

Tony's stance cuts off my opportunity to cut an angle off to his outside. I should not force him to take an opportunity that's not there. His stance also leaves the inside of his leg open. That is where my opportunity lies. If I want to cut an angle to his outside then I must do so when the opportunity exists. I already know that the opportunity will come available if he moves forward in a way that puts his lead leg closer to the center line. That's where the opportunity exists. Specifically for him and Specifically for the training session (not sparring).

The one thing I don't want to get into the habit of doing is overlooking other opportunities just because I'm looking for an opportunity to do one hip toss. I may not get the hip toss while you are laying on the ground. But I will get a other opportunities to to work on the appropriate technique to deal with you laying on the ground.

If I wanted to get practice in doing hip tosses then I would drill them. Or spar against someone who isn't good at defending hip tosses.
 
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Kung Fu Wang

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If I wanted to get practice in doing hip tosses then I would drill them. Or spar against someone who isn't good at defending hip tosses.
I don't believe you can learn hip throw through sparring without going through partner drill first. If you have drilled your hip throw 10,000 times with your partner, you then try to use it in sparring, whether you want to call that "learning", or "testing", it won't make any difference.
 

Tony Dismukes

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I don't believe you can learn hip throw through sparring without going through partner drill first. If you have drilled your hip throw 10,000 times with your partner, you then try to use it in sparring, whether you want to call that "learning", or "testing", it won't make any difference.
I don't think anyone is disagreeing with that point. There are stages to learning, and drilling movements solo or with a cooperative partner is generally the first necessary stage.
 

Kung Fu Wang

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I don't think anyone is disagreeing with that point. There are stages to learning, and drilling movements solo or with a cooperative partner is generally the first necessary stage.
The reason that I feel strongly about "one can't learn from sparring" is the following:

Your sparring partner may use a certain strategy that contradicts to what you intend to learn.

Everybody who are right hand person, if they wrestle with me for a period of time, they will all turn into left hand person. The reason is simple. When I wrestle, I won't let my opponent to enter through my left (there right). But I won't stop them from entering through my right (their left). After a period of time, they all turn into left hand person.

In other words, if my opponent tries to learn his right-side technique, he won't have any opportunity when they wrestle with me.

This girl always uses left side hip throw because she and I had wrestled for many years.

 
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JowGaWolf

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In that Floyd Mayweather vs Miguel Cotto fight, Floyd...

1. controls the space (hands).
2. throws a jab (straight punch).
3. follows with an overhand right (round or looping punch).
He's doing what I often refer to as "Programming the opponent" That's where you feed your opponent a patter that they will recognize. so that they will instinctive expect the follow up punch in the pattern. He taps with the jab then throws hard. If we watch the entire fight, I'm willing to bet that was used often.

I watched the full fight. His program punch is the Jab. It takes longer to program this one because it's one punch.
The variation is the uppercut and hook.

The jab programs his opponent to bring the gloves foward to protect against the jab. May weather probably knew when to change it by the amount of resistance to his jab. If the jab went through with not much trouble then he knew his opponent's guard was to the side of his head. If he felt a good defense against the jab. (jab hitting the gloves solid), then he knew the side of the head would be open for an overhand or hook.
I don't believe you can learn hip throw through sparring without going through partner drill first. If you have drilled your hip throw 10,000 times with your partner, you then try to use it in sparring, whether you want to call that "learning", or "testing", it won't make any difference.
No one is saying don't do partner drills.
 
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JowGaWolf

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Your sparring partner may use a certain strategy that contradicts to what you intend to learn.
You can set rules for sparring. This allows you to work on what you want to learn. Tony gave an example of that when he said he only used punching and focused on the long fist strikes. Even if restrictions aren't made I can set restrictions for myself. Then I can focus on using limited techniques. I think my first time sparring with a Sanda school I didn't use many kicks. I focused on not being taken down.

Your sparring partner may use a certain strategy that contradicts to what you intend to learn.
Not if you have a good sparring partner who isn't focused on winning a sparring session. If your sparring partner is any good then he or she will help you get better.

If you only spar with people who want to beat you up in sparring then you won't learn much in sparring.
Everybody who are right hand person, if they wrestle with me for a period of time, they will all turn into left hand person. The reason is simple. When I wrestle, I won't let my opponent to enter through my left (there right). But I won't stop them from entering through my right (their left). After a period of time, they all turn into left hand person.
The first thing I think when someone does this is that you are comfortable on the otherside. The next thing I would do is figure a way to exploit your preference.

If I couldn't figure a way then I would fin a partner who would be easier to attack on that side. But for me personally I would work that much harder to Crack you defense
 

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He's doing what I often refer to as "Programming the opponent" That's where you feed your opponent a patter that they will recognize. so that they will instinctive expect the follow up punch in the pattern. He taps with the jab then throws hard. If we watch the entire fight, I'm willing to bet that was used often.

I watched the full fight. His program punch is the Jab. It takes longer to program this one because it's one punch.
The variation is the uppercut and hook.

The jab programs his opponent to bring the gloves foward to protect against the jab. May weather probably knew when to change it by the amount of resistance to his jab. If the jab went through with not much trouble then he knew his opponent's guard was to the side of his head. If he felt a good defense against the jab. (jab hitting the gloves solid), then he knew the side of the head would be open for an overhand or hook.

No one is saying don't do partner drills.
Wow! That is very insightful on the strategy. Im truly impressed.
 

Kung Fu Wang

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If you only spar with people who want to beat you up in sparring then you won't learn much in sparring.
Apparently, we have different definition of "sparring".

My SC teacher told me that even when he wrestled with his own father, he tried to defeat his father in every single round. I asked him why. He told me that there is no such thing as fake sparring/wrestling.
 

Kung Fu Wang

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Not if you have a good sparring partner who isn't focused on winning a sparring session. If your sparring partner is any good then he or she will help you get better.
I may not be a good sparring partner.

One time one of my students refused to wrestle with me. I asked him why. He said every time when he wrestled with me, I didn't help him to build confidence. Instead, I always destroyed his confidence. This is why I tried not to wrestle with my students if they have tournament within a month. I want them to remember their winning. I don't want them to remember their losing.

What should I do? Let my wrestling partner to take me down when he doesn't deserve it?
 
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