What does it mean to be a martial artist?

Tez3

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Someone who wanders around the house waving their arms around in strange patterns whilst imagining various scenarios or techniques. Someone who practices forms while the kettle boils. Someone who’s wife refuses to go to a cash machine with them because they won’t allow the person behind them stand closer than a metre.

I've seen long lists of things like this...'how do you know you are a martial artist'

Things like switching off lights with your foot, sitting in a waiting room looking at people in turn working out how to take them down if they attacked....... any more, people?
 

Gerry Seymour

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Lol. I'm not wrong. In golf, you actually play golf to become a better golfer. And you'd never take golf lessons from someone who has never played a round of golf on an actual golf course.

Don't sigh at me, young man! :)

Edit: and what about pulling that quote out of context. I wrote a good bit more than that one line.
You did say more. That line was what caused the sigh. There are ways other than competition arts to test techniques with resistance.

And my knees object to being called "young".:mad:
 

Gerry Seymour

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I've seen long lists of things like this...'how do you know you are a martial artist'

Things like switching off lights with your foot, sitting in a waiting room looking at people in turn working out how to take them down if they attacked....... any more, people?
Opening doors (especially heavy ones) with proper tai sabaki (body movement), then moving through them by blending.
 

Steve

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You did say more. That line was what caused the sigh. There are ways other than competition arts to test techniques with resistance.

And my knees object to being called "young".:mad:
:) I'm not talking about testing technique. I'm talking about applying technique. Not the same.

Edit: As I think about this, I wonder if this is where some fundamental misunderstandings are occurring. Understanding the distinction between skill development and application of skill is essential to understanding what I've been saying for a very long time around here. And why I'm skeptical when people purport to be experts on things they have little to no practical experience doing (which is different from knowing a lot about something).
 
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Gerry Seymour

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:) I'm not talking about testing technique. I'm talking about applying technique. Not the same.

Edit: As I think about this, I wonder if this is where some fundamental misunderstandings are occurring. Understanding the distinction between skill development and application of skill is essential to understanding what I've been saying for a very long time around here. And why I'm skeptical when people purport to be experts on things they have little to no practical experience doing (which is different from knowing a lot about something).
Okay, techniques can be applied just as fully inside a dojo as they can in a competition.
 

drop bear

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Okay, techniques can be applied just as fully inside a dojo as they can in a competition.

Different pressures.

Competition generally has better guys. And there is more focus on winning and loosing.

Now you could recreate that in training. Animal day would be an example. But it is uncommon.

I mean I could walk in to your dojo and fight one of your guys. Which would recreate the experience. But if it is guys who know each other sparring who have never competed or fought.

Well where is the test?
 
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Gerry Seymour

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I disagree. Not the same thing at all. One prepares you for the other.
No, application in the dojo (in the context of heavy sparring) is not just preparation for competition. If competition isn't my goal (and it isn't), then why would I prepare specifically for it?
 

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Different pressures.

Competition generally has better guys. And there is more focus on winning and loosing.

Now you could recreate that in training. Animal day would be an example. But it is uncommon.

I mean I could walk in to your dojo and fight one of your guys. Which would recreate the experience. But if it is guys who know each other sparring who have never competed or fought.

Well where is the test?
Agreed, there are different pressures, and usually (at least at higher levels) a better quality opponent. All true. As for the focus on winning and losing, I don't actually need that. For self-defense, a draw is an option. As is creating enough time to escape. Neither have much application in competition, though.

Remember, as you read this, that I think competition training is actually a good road for self-defense prep. It has weaknesses (as everything does) and strengths. I just don't believe it's the only path, and it's not an appropriate path for everyone.

When I spar/work out with a partner outside my normal training folks, I can't go "full animal". My body just won't take the abuse and let me function the next day. That's a limit to my training.
 

drop bear

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No, application in the dojo (in the context of heavy sparring) is not just preparation for competition. If competition isn't my goal (and it isn't), then why would I prepare specifically for it?

Because competition adds an extra element to developing fighting ability.
 

drop bear

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Agreed, there are different pressures, and usually (at least at higher levels) a better quality opponent. All true. As for the focus on winning and losing, I don't actually need that. For self-defense, a draw is an option. As is creating enough time to escape. Neither have much application in competition, though.

Remember, as you read this, that I think competition training is actually a good road for self-defense prep. It has weaknesses (as everything does) and strengths. I just don't believe it's the only path, and it's not an appropriate path for everyone.

When I spar/work out with a partner outside my normal training folks, I can't go "full animal". My body just won't take the abuse and let me function the next day. That's a limit to my training.

For self defence you really need winning and loosing to mean something in your training. Because it will mean something if someone is really threatening you.

And that will change the way you approach fighting.

A draw is kind of a different concept. In this instance.
 

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Because competition adds an extra element to developing fighting ability.
It can, indeed. But I still wouldn't be preparing for it. My dojo work has a different focus. If I competed, it would be with the same focus, so dojo and competition would both be aimed at developing defensive ability. So, no, the dojo is not always preparation for competition.
 

Gerry Seymour

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For self defence you really need winning and loosing to mean something in your training. Because it will mean something if someone is really threatening you.

And that will change the way you approach fighting.

A draw is kind of a different concept. In this instance.
Okay, I think we might be on the same page on this one, just using different explanations. Clearly "losing" has a real meaning in defensive use, and competition can help put some urgency in the training (which is perhaps harder to come by in other ways). "Winning" has a different meaning to me in each context, especially given the difference in the length of encounters.
 

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No, application in the dojo (in the context of heavy sparring) is not just preparation for competition. If competition isn't my goal (and it isn't), then why would I prepare specifically for it?
There is no application in the dojo. Well, I take that back. There is, but it's often not what people think. I explain this in more detail in the threads I linked to. I mentioned Parker-fu in one of those threads.

" You cannot be an expert in self defence without practical, real world experience in the field applying the techniques. You CAN become an expert in a system. Call it Parker-fu, put whatever techniques you want, apply measures for proficiency and teach people to an expert level in your system. Because THAT'S what they're learning and applying. They are not defending themselves in your class. They are applying your system."
 

Gerry Seymour

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There is no application in the dojo. Well, I take that back. There is, but it's often not what people think. I explain this in more detail in the threads I linked to. I mentioned Parker-fu in one of those threads.

" You cannot be an expert in self defence without practical, real world experience in the field applying the techniques. You CAN become an expert in a system. Call it Parker-fu, put whatever techniques you want, apply measures for proficiency and teach people to an expert level in your system. Because THAT'S what they're learning and applying. They are not defending themselves in your class. They are applying your system."
You say "there is no application in the dojo", but I disagree. There can be the same application in a dojo that there is in competition: a fully-resisting partner. As DB pointed out (this thread?), there is a difference in competition (probably a higher caliber of opponent, and possibly an unknown opponent), but that doesn't mean application can't happen in the dojo. Now, I'll agree that it's entirely possible (indeed, observable) that actual application doesn't happen in some dojos. But that's not the same as saying it doesn't exist in dojos.
 

drop bear

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Okay, I think we might be on the same page on this one, just using different explanations. Clearly "losing" has a real meaning in defensive use, and competition can help put some urgency in the training (which is perhaps harder to come by in other ways). "Winning" has a different meaning to me in each context, especially given the difference in the length of encounters.


Exept a 5 minute fight is a bunch of 10 second fights all strung together. People have this weird notion that there self defence fight will be them aware and fresh and they can pressure for a few seconds and the fight is won. And that may not be they case.

A competition will place a person in that spectum of what may happen in a self defence fight. Just not over the whole period of that fight.
 

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You say "there is no application in the dojo", but I disagree. There can be the same application in a dojo that there is in competition: a fully-resisting partner. As DB pointed out (this thread?), there is a difference in competition (probably a higher caliber of opponent, and possibly an unknown opponent), but that doesn't mean application can't happen in the dojo. Now, I'll agree that it's entirely possible (indeed, observable) that actual application doesn't happen in some dojos. But that's not the same as saying it doesn't exist in dojos.
come on, now. I said, I take that back... and then I said, "there is, but it's often not what people think." I shared some links that provide further explanation.
 

drop bear

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You say "there is no application in the dojo", but I disagree. There can be the same application in a dojo that there is in competition: a fully-resisting partner. As DB pointed out (this thread?), there is a difference in competition (probably a higher caliber of opponent, and possibly an unknown opponent), but that doesn't mean application can't happen in the dojo. Now, I'll agree that it's entirely possible (indeed, observable) that actual application doesn't happen in some dojos. But that's not the same as saying it doesn't exist in dojos.

I can't teach aikido from watching vodeos and then getting together with my friends and training mabye doing a few seminars.

I need some sort of real external reference point.

In that context there is no application in the dojo.

20 years of drop bear Aikido will not ever be Aikido untill I do Aikido with a real guy.
 

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Exept a 5 minute fight is a bunch of 10 second fights all strung together. People have this weird notion that there self defence fight will be them aware and fresh and they can pressure for a few seconds and the fight is won. And that may not be they case.

A competition will place a person in that spectum of what may happen in a self defence fight. Just not over the whole period of that fight.
I have to disagree. I'm rarely as tired in my life as I am after 4 minutes of sparring. Accounting for the additional drain from stress (offset by additional adrenaline), that's still not equivalent. Very few self-defense encounters extend more than 20 seconds or so.
 
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