- Jun 26, 2003
- Reaction score
Originally posted by Black Bear
"Begin with the end in mind..." What is your main objective for training, and what are your secondary objectives?
Excellent suggestion. I think many times people become involved with a certain art or instructor for the wrong reasons.
Evaluate what it is you want to achieve and go from there. Is it fitness? Self defense? Becoming accomplished in a style that is an "Art"? Physical discipline? Rehabilitation from an injury? (don't laugh) Do you want something sport oriented? Combat oriented? Or both..?
Do you have physical restrictions to consider? Injuries? Would you do better with an art that is straightforward employing simple motor skills? Can you handle an art that requires complex motor skills? Would you feel better about learning a weapons based art that has less empty hands application at your age? Take a sheet of paper and use the "Ben Franklin Balance Sheet" approach. Positives on one side, negatives on the other. Be honest. Then pursue a good training environment, a capable instructor and something affordable, from there.
Personally, for what its worth, I feel it is important to pursue a course of training that is well rounded and will prepare one for all aspects and levels of combat. Striking, kicking,trapping, weapons, throws, grappling and environmental awareness just to mention a few. This is one reason I spent so much time in the JKD environment. At my age I have found that heavy duty striking and kicking training, (boxing, Thai boxing etc.) is very demanding on my joints and takes its toll. I still train this aspect but not as hard core as I used to. My main focus presently, again for what it is worth, is Groundfighting. I have trained in 13 styles over the last 30 years and always found that when we sparred realistically and when I encountered hostility in the street it inevetably ended up in a clinch and then on the ground. Even in weapons sparring. I also felt this was a very neglected area by many martial arts disciplines including some of those I was training in. So I have focused on training in groundfighting. I find it keeps me in great shape, flexible and strong. It also is a great combative advantage because even with the "grappling" explosion we have seen over the last decade or so... many systems do not adequately deal with it, some systems, not at all. This is one reason I am involved in Progressive Groundfighting Concepts. It is our goal to make realistic, practical and functional groundfighting training and concepts available to anyone who is interested without restriction or predjudice. We are as willing to learn as we are to teach and share. www.groundfight.com
Our forum is open to all who are interested and wish to share, learn and discuss grappling regardless of style or background.
I apologize, I have digressed. I share this as a fellow older martial artist and I salute your decision to pursue training. It is amazing how interest and training seems to fall off in general as people get older. So, hang in there and go for it! Let us know how you make out.