Teaching the student how to fight

isshinryuronin

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If I may wade in here with some thoughts, not being a CMA guy.

To develop fighting ability in the short term, forms (as much as I value them) will not be that helpful as a deeper understanding of the applications and basics is required to get the full benefit of the form's combat potential.

Stick to more generalized techniques that have, or can be adapted to, multiple uses and concentrate on those to get the most out of the least.

Concentrate training on simple, direct, techniques that are easy to execute and more quickly mastered, such as a kick to shin or knee followed by a jab. Better to master a few moves than be OK in many.

I agree some basic footwork is essential to get off-line and set up angles of attack.

Work on developing a martial attitude and bearing.

Learn "dirty" moves as biting, finger breaking and eye pokes.

I would do all of the above if my student told me he needs effective self-defense and only has a year to learn. Of course, some of this can be taught to any student at the start to show them the art's combat potential and give them some sense of confidence and something ready to use from the get-go.

Now, by teaching in this fashion, other areas of the art (such as forms and the harder to master kicks) will be neglected and the student's advanced progress will be retarded a bit. If the student has 2-3+ years, I would teach for the long game and use a more traditional teaching strategy.
 

drop bear

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Ok. Here is a grappling situational drill we do for fighters.

So they are five minute rounds done at full resistance. Sort of.

So you get one guy versus a group of guys who just line up and hit him attack after attack

The first minute you take him down with double legs,

The second minute he takes you down.

Third minute you take him down off a wall.

Fourth munute he takes you down of a wall.

Fith minute we do clinch work. But Mabye you would be better off escaping a back bear hug.

Now the point of these drills isn't that the guy in the middle wins. He can get mauled nine times out of ten. So long as you don't stall. It is so he gets realistic feedback.

So the drills all have a win condition and a loose condition.

You could add striking if you wanted. But you have to be a bit careful. Normally for use just the team attacking the one guy strikes.

You can do this with most basic self defence positions. Pinned on the ground and you have to get up. That sort of thing.
 

drop bear

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Otherwise shoot box sparring. Which is 16oz gloves sparring with thake downs, GNP, and a limited time one the ground. Normally to a control position.
 

drop bear

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The only part I disagree with here is where you say forms can be replaced.
I understand that people who train MMA, boxing, MT, etc. don't practice forms in the strictest sense of the word, but they're a valuable component that gives the practitioner a place to go to refine skills.

They don't really refine skills. Nobody fights like they do forms.

Forms just force the body to operate from uncomfortable positions so that you have a better ability to make your body do the movements required to fight

So we could look at portal movements and they look nothing like fighting. But if you can move well you can fight better.

 
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yak sao

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I'll throw away (or replace) all those moves that don't have direct fighting application.

For example, in the WC Biu Jee form, there are moves that one freezes his body and arm, he just moves his palm up and down, or horizontally (at 0.11 - 0.30 in the following clip). I just don't see any value to train those moves.

Also I don't understand why during the 3rd WC form training stage, one still does "muscle group isolation", freeze the body, freeze the arm, and only move the palm. It violates the CMA "body unification/coordinate" principle.

Nice body unification/coordination can be seen at 1.31 - 1.35 (hand coordinate with foot, elbow coordinate with knee, shoulder coordinate with hip).


These movements warm up the joints.

If not properly warmed up, the ballistic movements of this form can jack up the wrists, elbows and shoulders.
 

jobo

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These movements warm up the joints.

If not properly warmed up, the ballistic movements of this form can jack up the wrists, elbows and shoulders.
well they do,but its more time efficient to warm up multiple joints at once, by doing full body movements

the value in this is what you dont see, ie you dont see movement in the rest of the body as yoyr frezing it, ie holding it in isometric contraction, which warms and strenthen the muscles
 

Graywalker

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Kata- simply means template and every method of training...starts with a template.

Kata- is just that a template, if you think Kata- was ever intended to be used in a fight, you have simply shown your ignorance concerning styles that use them. Regardless of how long you have trained in a style, if you do not understand that they are templates, blame your former crappy instructor, not the kata-.

If you have never trained in kata, and say they are useless..well that just makes you appear to be a know it all and your opinion, doesn't really amount to much, if anything at all.
 

Hanzou

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Kata- simply means template and every method of training...starts with a template.

Kata- is just that a template, if you think Kata- was ever intended to be used in a fight, you have simply shown your ignorance concerning styles that use them. Regardless of how long you have trained in a style, if you do not understand that they are templates, blame your former crappy instructor, not the kata-.

If you have never trained in kata, and say they are useless..well that just makes you appear to be a know it all and your opinion, doesn't really amount to much, if anything at all.

Uh, if Kata is a template for fighting, yet is never intended to be used for fighting, then it isn't a template for fighting.

In short, what you just said is a contradiction....
 

jobo

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Uh, if Kata is a template for fighting, yet is never intended to be used for fighting, then it isn't a template for fighting.

In short, what you just said is a contradiction....
its a template of the moves to be used in fighting

you dont fight in the order that the moves appear in the kata., coz that would be silly
 

Hanzou

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its a template of the moves to be used in fighting

you dont fight in the order that the moves appear in the kata., coz that would be silly

Then what's the point of learning the moves in a prearranged kata? Why not remove the kata and just teach the techniques and their application? In the span of time I'm wasting moving around in a kata, you could just be teaching me the techniques directly, and why I'm learning those techniques.
 

Flying Crane

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If I may wade in here with some thoughts, not being a CMA guy.

To develop fighting ability in the short term, forms (as much as I value them) will not be that helpful as a deeper understanding of the applications and basics is required to get the full benefit of the form's combat potential.

Stick to more generalized techniques that have, or can be adapted to, multiple uses and concentrate on those to get the most out of the least.

Concentrate training on simple, direct, techniques that are easy to execute and more quickly mastered, such as a kick to shin or knee followed by a jab. Better to master a few moves than be OK in many.

I agree some basic footwork is essential to get off-line and set up angles of attack.

Work on developing a martial attitude and bearing.

Learn "dirty" moves as biting, finger breaking and eye pokes.

I would do all of the above if my student told me he needs effective self-defense and only has a year to learn. Of course, some of this can be taught to any student at the start to show them the art's combat potential and give them some sense of confidence and something ready to use from the get-go.

Now, by teaching in this fashion, other areas of the art (such as forms and the harder to master kicks) will be neglected and the student's advanced progress will be retarded a bit. If the student has 2-3+ years, I would teach for the long game and use a more traditional teaching strategy.
I think this is very well said.

My Sifu has said that if all we wanted was to learn to fight quickly, he could teach us that in the space of a year and it would include no forms.

Ive been thinking about that, and how I might use that approach in my own teaching, if I can get a training group going in my area. I might take the first six months to a year and just do what you describe above. Work the hell out of the foundation and fundamental techniques and teach them how to get a lot of mileage from a small curriculum. Later I would bring in the forms that would solidify the methodology and then broaden their view of what is possible.

I think its an interesting idea. I also suspect that it may be more in line with traditional teaching methods. I suspect that forms are not meant to be taught early in the process and are better used when they are brought in later. But in the modern era, people want the interesting stuff right away, or they lose interest. So forms are introduced early.
 

jobo

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Then what's the point of learning the moves in a prearranged kata? Why not remove the kata and just teach the techniques and their application? In the span of time I'm wasting moving around in a kata, you could just be teaching me the techniques directly, and why I'm learning those techniques.
differebt kata have different orders,, the idea is to avoid repeating and getting all the moves in

you should have learnt the technques before you learn the kata.
the kata should teach you to transition from one to the next

im not saying that kata is the bestway to do this, just its not as pointless as you say.

we spend 10mins on kata in a 2 hour class, i tolerate it rather than enjoy

the big problem comes when you use kata as the main test of ability in grading, then it takes on an importance it doesnt deserve
 
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isshinryuronin

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Then what's the point of learning the moves in a prearranged kata? Why not remove the kata and just teach the techniques and their application? In the span of time I'm wasting moving around in a kata, you could just be teaching me the techniques directly, and why I'm learning those techniques.

A logical question. The core of the kata are the techniques and applications that have combat value. You seem to agree with this premise, as do I. So, why not just teach those and forget about putting them into a sequenced routine? Two major reasons:

First, by having a memorized routine, you have a tool to practice and remember and teach all those techniques and applications. There were not always videos and books to refer to.

Next, one is not "wasting time moving around in a kata." Movement is key in combat, especially transitioning from one stance to another. Often, it is this transitioning that allows a technique to be effective.

Then, there are a host of secondary benefits to kata: Increased body awareness, development of agility, posture and balance, mental discipline, proper breathing (especially in the longer kata,) and so on.

The techniques and applications are the reason kata exists. The lack of emphasis of realistic combat applications is what has rendered kata to become less relevant over the past decades as the form became the main focus over function. Once this trend is reversed, kata becomes a more practical and useful activity.
 

isshinryuronin

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you should have learnt the technques before you learn the kata.
This is how it was originally taught - training in the techniques and applications with a partner. The kata provided for solo practice and a template for exploring variations of applications.
 

Highlander

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They don't really refine skills. Nobody fights like they do forms.

Forms just force the body to operate from uncomfortable positions so that you have a better ability to make your body do the movements required to fight

So we could look at portal movements and they look nothing like fighting. But if you can move well you can fight better.

The WC forms are set up a bit different. They're not about fighting or moving but more about angles and concepts. So they help you refine the smaller movements. As its been stated not great for learning to fight. But that's not what they're for
 
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JowGaWolf

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I'll throw away (or replace) all those moves that don't have direct fighting application.
definitely this and especially important when it comes to TMA since not everything from a form is about fighting.
 

Tony Dismukes

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The WC forms are set up a bit different. They're not about fighting or moving but more about angles and concepts. So they help you refine the smaller movements. So its been stated not great for learning to fight. But that's not what they're for
Yeah, from my limited experience in WC I view the forms as a series of specialized exercises for isolating and drilling certain aspects of structure and body mechanics which are important in WC. Definitely not a template for actually fighting.
 

Highlander

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They don't really refine skills. Nobody fights like they do forms.

Forms just force the body to operate from uncomfortable positions so that you have a better ability to make your body do the movements required to fight

So we could look at portal movements and they look nothing like fighting. But if you can move well you can fight better.

But also... I need to do what he does in that video.... cause damn that guy is RIPPED
 

JowGaWolf

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The WC forms are set up a bit different. They're not about fighting or moving but more about angles and concepts. So they help you refine the smaller movements. So its been stated not great for learning to fight. But that's not what they're for
That would make learning to fight more difficult. If all you do is practice movement and concepts. You aren't actually doing movement as it relates to carrying out an applications. As you describe it, that makes it sound as if it's just an exercise.
 

Hanzou

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A logical question. The core of the kata are the techniques and applications that have combat value. You seem to agree with this premise, as do I. So, why not just teach those and forget about putting them into a sequenced routine? Two major reasons:

First, by having a memorized routine, you have a tool to practice and remember and teach all those techniques and applications. There were not always videos and books to refer to.

Next, one is not "wasting time moving around in a kata." Movement is key in combat, especially transitioning from one stance to another. Often, it is this transitioning that allows a technique to be effective.

Then, there are a host of secondary benefits to kata: Increased body awareness, development of agility, posture and balance, mental discipline, proper breathing (especially in the longer kata,) and so on.

The techniques and applications are the reason kata exists. The lack of emphasis of realistic combat applications is what has rendered kata to become less relevant over the past decades as the form became the main focus over function. Once this trend is reversed, kata becomes a more practical and useful activity.

I would be fine with that answer if we didn't have other styles of martial arts that are fully capable of translating a large body of techniques without the use of kata.
 

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