small rant

bigfootsquatch

Purple Belt
Joined
Apr 14, 2007
Messages
319
Reaction score
9
I just have to get this off my chest...mainly because I see it so much on here and other boards. When someone ask about an instructional dvd, why does everyone feel the need to lecture them about finding a teacher? No, I do not believe that most people can obtain a high level of proficiency in a martial art on videos alone, but some people are just looking for a hobby, or maybe they are just curious. There have been so many times that I have asked about videos, and 3 out of 10 responses may answer the question. The rest are about how I need to go find an instructor and so forth. I, and I am sure many others, simply find martial arts in general interesting. I love learning about other styles, and I can always pick up a new move or two to incorporate. Maybe I am missing the point, but I don't see why people can't simply recommend videos that people ask about, instead of telling the topic creator how useless they are.

I think most of us understand that:
we can't fully learn an art from a video
live instruction is better
home study courses are generally created based on greed

Those of us that do not may:
want a hobby
want to pick up a few moves to good around with

Anyway, that's it. This rant is based off personal experience and seeing others treated the same.
 

bobquinn

Green Belt
Joined
Jan 21, 2006
Messages
170
Reaction score
1
Location
Atlanta GA
You have a great deal of merit in your words. I think we live in such a video world that a lot is and or should be right there on tape. Very few people can actually teach to a video and just demonstrate. Continue to watch and learn and if in the mean time you come across an instructor fit into what you are looking fine. It is nice to have someone to guide you along,but just go with the flow.

Bob Quinn
 

jks9199

Administrator
Staff member
Lifetime Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 2, 2006
Messages
23,506
Reaction score
3,850
Location
Northern VA
You've got a valid point -- and it's why I've never said that you cannot learn from a book or video. But you can't (with a very few very rare exceptions) learn a style from a book or video. There are just too many pieces that are missed that way.

An experienced martial artist CAN learn from a book or video, and even a complete tyro can learn something from them. But that doesn't mean that nobody should be cautioning many posters or readers about the dangers of learning in that way, either. Just because we all know that ice is slippery doesn't mean you shouldn't warn me before I step onto a sheet of ice!
 

arnisador

Sr. Grandmaster
MTS Alumni
Joined
Aug 28, 2001
Messages
44,573
Reaction score
456
Location
Terre Haute, IN
People may need to be told that an instructor is needed, but I agree that it too often becomes paternalistic as people refuse to answer the question at all.
 

Bob Hubbard

Retired
MT Mentor
Founding Member
Lifetime Supporting Member
MTS Alumni
Joined
Aug 4, 2001
Messages
47,245
Reaction score
772
Location
Land of the Free
My take on it is, even if it's "just a hobby" you still need competent instruction. No matter how good a video is, it can't take you by the hand and adjust your movements when they are wrong. I've never gotten feedback from a video. You can learn it, kinda, but it'll most likely lack polish, and effectiveness, and in some cases, be dangerous to you. Mind you, I'm a big supporter of video and book training, but just not in self-defense techniques. YMMV. :)
 

jarrod

Senior Master
Joined
Jul 7, 2008
Messages
2,172
Reaction score
96
Location
Denver
bigfoot, i would like to advise you to find a qualified instructor. you can't learn a martial art from a video.

jf
 

Frostbite

Blue Belt
Joined
Jul 11, 2008
Messages
248
Reaction score
10
Location
Southern California
My take on it is, even if it's "just a hobby" you still need competent instruction. No matter how good a video is, it can't take you by the hand and adjust your movements when they are wrong. I've never gotten feedback from a video. You can learn it, kinda, but it'll most likely lack polish, and effectiveness, and in some cases, be dangerous to you. Mind you, I'm a big supporter of video and book training, but just not in self-defense techniques. YMMV. :)

My take on it is that if I wanted to learn the style, I would be taking classes. I'm currently taking Muay Thai. I'm not going to indulge my passing interest in Shaolin staff forms by taking classes, just because I think they look neat. A video is perfect for that. I can learn a few things and sate my curiosity without investing time and money in a school, which could take months/years to teach me what I want to know. Not to mention the fact that I may realize in the end that it seemed like a better idea than it really was.
 
OP
bigfootsquatch

bigfootsquatch

Purple Belt
Joined
Apr 14, 2007
Messages
319
Reaction score
9
bigfoot, i would like to advise you to find a qualified instructor. you can't learn a martial art from a video.

jf

Oh, looks like someone is wearing their silly pants today!
 
OP
bigfootsquatch

bigfootsquatch

Purple Belt
Joined
Apr 14, 2007
Messages
319
Reaction score
9
I understand the points everyone is making, and I think everyone understood my points, which is good. I guess my annoyance is just seeing entire threads hijacked to tell people to go find instruction. I know some may be trying to learn it from videos, so I guess you guys are right about warning of the potential dangers, but this doesn't have to be done in every reply in the thread. I think reading the person's profile before warning them may be more tactful as well. I've asked about videos regarding styles I'm studying before, and then I have to explain, sometimes more than once, that no-I am just looking for a supplement to my training, or as the case may be, I've asked about bujinkan videos several times before, and always...ALWAYS, half of the responses are about finding live instruction. I just want to see what its about, okay?! I imagine that other posters who ask about videos feel the same way. SO, if you want to warn someone, maybe you should do so while you suggest videos and/or books. If you really want to be help that individual, then maybe you should help them locate schools in their area as well.
 

celtic_crippler

Senior Master
Joined
Jan 15, 2006
Messages
3,968
Reaction score
137
Location
Airstrip One
Use whatever resources you feel help you to achieve whatever your goals are in martial arts. Be it a live instructor, a seminar or camp, a book, a video, a clip on youtube, a DVD, a discussion forum...whatever. After all, you're studying for you and not for someone else; right?
 

grydth

Senior Master
Joined
Jan 13, 2007
Messages
2,464
Reaction score
150
Location
Upstate New York.
I understand the points everyone is making, and I think everyone understood my points, which is good. I guess my annoyance is just seeing entire threads hijacked to tell people to go find instruction. I know some may be trying to learn it from videos, so I guess you guys are right about warning of the potential dangers, but this doesn't have to be done in every reply in the thread. I think reading the person's profile before warning them may be more tactful as well. I've asked about videos regarding styles I'm studying before, and then I have to explain, sometimes more than once, that no-I am just looking for a supplement to my training, or as the case may be, I've asked about bujinkan videos several times before, and always...ALWAYS, half of the responses are about finding live instruction. I just want to see what its about, okay?! I imagine that other posters who ask about videos feel the same way. SO, if you want to warn someone, maybe you should do so while you suggest videos and/or books. If you really want to be help that individual, then maybe you should help them locate schools in their area as well.

I understand and respect your position - but there's another side to this.

You may well be very experienced, and able to pick up significant skills from a video or book alone. But communicating in this Internet environment, we often know little or nothing of who anybody really is. I don't know if you're a learned sifu or a kid who thinks you can become a Kung Fu master for 2 hours and 39.95.

The sad fact is that many Americans believe you can get something on the cheap. A lot of false gods play to that..... why spend the money and study for years when you can be a 10th degree soke black belt after a weekend seminar and my secret video? Do I really need to cite names for this point?

I think we older guys especially owe a duty to beginners and young people to warn them about this. If we get only a few to reputable dojos, its worth it.

You may wish to preface your posts about DVDs with a note that you have an instructor (or, perhaps you are an instructor), and that you are just seeking input on quality and content.

Keep your tranquility. If the posts offend you, skip over them or put us on the ignore list. I think you've a worthwhile topic here, but not something to get upset over.
 
OP
bigfootsquatch

bigfootsquatch

Purple Belt
Joined
Apr 14, 2007
Messages
319
Reaction score
9
I understand and respect your position - but there's another side to this.

You may well be very experienced, and able to pick up significant skills from a video or book alone. But communicating in this Internet environment, we often know little or nothing of who anybody really is. I don't know if you're a learned sifu or a kid who thinks you can become a Kung Fu master for 2 hours and 39.95.

The sad fact is that many Americans believe you can get something on the cheap. A lot of false gods play to that..... why spend the money and study for years when you can be a 10th degree soke black belt after a weekend seminar and my secret video? Do I really need to cite names for this point?

I think we older guys especially owe a duty to beginners and young people to warn them about this. If we get only a few to reputable dojos, its worth it.

You may wish to preface your posts about DVDs with a note that you have an instructor (or, perhaps you are an instructor), and that you are just seeking input on quality and content.

Keep your tranquility. If the posts offend you, skip over them or put us on the ignore list. I think you've a worthwhile topic here, but not something to get upset over.

I don't guess I thought my post all the way through, and I am glad you brought that up. I suppose there is a duty to educate those who do not know about the vast sea of scams in the MA world. Just to let everyone know, don't think I'm upset or mad. I didn't mean to come off that way. I just feel that sometimes people go overboard in their suggesting live instruction. You make a great point though, thanks.
 
Last edited:

SA_BJJ

Blue Belt
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Messages
225
Reaction score
3
Location
San Antonio
Videos are fine, I dont see a problem with them. Anyone ever heard of a due by the name of Evan Tanner...well he won the UFC middleweight belt by learning how to grapple from instructional videos.
 
OP
bigfootsquatch

bigfootsquatch

Purple Belt
Joined
Apr 14, 2007
Messages
319
Reaction score
9
Videos are fine, I dont see a problem with them. Anyone ever heard of a due by the name of Evan Tanner...well he won the UFC middleweight belt by learning how to grapple from instructional videos.

Somewhat on that subject, didn't Bas Rutten learn how to grapple from a video?
 

zeeberex

Green Belt
Joined
Oct 25, 2008
Messages
173
Reaction score
4
Use whatever resources you feel help you to achieve whatever your goals are in martial arts. Be it a live instructor, a seminar or camp, a book, a video, a clip on youtube, a DVD, a discussion forum...whatever. After all, you're studying for you and not for someone else; right?


Bingo.........
 

shihansmurf

Black Belt
Joined
Dec 10, 2007
Messages
685
Reaction score
104
Location
Casper, Wyoming
Use whatever resources you feel help you to achieve whatever your goals are in martial arts. Be it a live instructor, a seminar or camp, a book, a video, a clip on youtube, a DVD, a discussion forum...whatever. After all, you're studying for you and not for someone else; right?

Hit it the nail right on the head.

To the OP: Sometime you're gonna have to wade through a lot of doodoo to get to the pearls of wisdom. Keep wading. There are a lot of well trained folks with a wealth of knowledge on these boards, that tends to make us a bit opinionated.A bunch of people have a strong dislike for video tapes and take every opportunity to voice that opinion. Their view has merit, but it is irritating to have every recomendation thread derailed
by unsolicited comments to the effect that "if you are trying to pick up something form a tape then you don't know the real kung fu". Its crap, and its rude.

Mark
 

MBuzzy

Grandmaster
MTS Alumni
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
5,328
Reaction score
108
Location
West Melbourne, FL
I understand and respect your position - but there's another side to this.

You may well be very experienced, and able to pick up significant skills from a video or book alone. But communicating in this Internet environment, we often know little or nothing of who anybody really is. I don't know if you're a learned sifu or a kid who thinks you can become a Kung Fu master for 2 hours and 39.95.

The sad fact is that many Americans believe you can get something on the cheap. A lot of false gods play to that..... why spend the money and study for years when you can be a 10th degree soke black belt after a weekend seminar and my secret video? Do I really need to cite names for this point?

I think we older guys especially owe a duty to beginners and young people to warn them about this. If we get only a few to reputable dojos, its worth it.

You may wish to preface your posts about DVDs with a note that you have an instructor (or, perhaps you are an instructor), and that you are just seeking input on quality and content.

Keep your tranquility. If the posts offend you, skip over them or put us on the ignore list. I think you've a worthwhile topic here, but not something to get upset over.

This is dead on and exactly my thoughts. When someone shows up on MT, we have no way of knowing if that person is the Grandmaster of a style or a brand new beginner who has never set foot on a training floor in his/her life. In fact, there *may* even be members here who claim rank that they do not actually have....it is the nature of the internet, you can say anything about who you are.

While I agree 100% with the OP, that for the majority of our posters, that is not necessary and is beating the proverbial dead horse...but I also feel that it is the DUTY of those who are experienced in MA to ENSURE that anyone who asks about instructional DVDs knows that they need an instructor. There are certainly people out there who don't realize that.

Because let's be perfectly honest here, if you are a very experienced martial artist and are asking for a review of a DVD, your post will be significantly different from someone who has no experience asking about a home training program. The exerpienced Martial Artist will be self evident in his question.

I have seen both....and we do get a great many complete beginners looking for a quick DVD style approach and really don't know that they need an instructor and NEED to be told. I've also seen experienced practitioners asking and they generally get the response that they ask for. Which reminds me a good new topic! Let's see how many of those reminders I get! :)
 
Top