Archive for category Martial Arts
It’s really a matter of getting enough data. A fellow who studies two arts and tries to combine them usually doesn’t have enough data. You need three or four arts before you even start. And, you need to learn how to matrix if you are going to be successful.
That all said, I used to look in Tai Chi books for ways to fix Karate. Oh, I know, heresy. All I can say to that is the pure martial arts takes precedence over pure tai chi, or pure karate, for that matter. And I am interested in the whole pie, not just a slice.
Consider the advice from Yang Family Secret Transmissions (Douglas Wile).
‘We must avoid fullness and emphasize emptiness so that our opponent lands on nothing.’
This is great advice, applicable to a great extend in a great variety of situations in Tai Chi. To a Karate man, however, it sounds a little mystical.
However, if you face a man and you both have your right foot forward, you are matching stances and balanced and symmetrical in stance. But, if you have right foot and left foot forward (opposing stances) then you would be full. That is, you are both trying to step forward on the same side, and thus colliding, and thus…’full.’ So, match stances, and when the fellow attacks, step back so that you are always matching, and in balance. So here’s the problem…how do you take advantage when you are in a matching stance? Karate strives to be full, to smash and take away our opponent’s area. This has nothing to do with balance. Tai Chi strives for balance, and then to give way in small manner so that the opponent over commits himself. When the attacker has over committed he will show weakness. This weakness will not be apparent to a karate man, at least until he has read these words and understood the intent. Now, I have given you a problem, in thinking about it (and you will not be able to avoid thinking about it), you will eventually come up with a technique, or a solution, or something that will enable you to take advantage of the situation. This will enable you to improve your freestyle. And, when your freestyle is improved you may tend to look at this thing of purity of art as a gimmick designed to stop your progress in the whole martial arts. I tell you, you want the whole pie, not just a few pieces, and crossing martial arts can fix karate, and kung fu, and aikido, and so on and so on. My site is Learn Karate Online, and there is a free sample lesson available there.
I thought I was studying Karate, but I really wasn’t. I was just breaking my body down, one punch at a time, and getting little benefit. Check out the video, then I’ll tell you how I broke through to real Karate.
I read stories of the old masters, and I wondered why I was totally flattened out, why I was in a plateau that never ended.
Eventually, I started getting headaches with every punch I threw. I’d throw a gentle punch so I could work out, but if I ever threw a hard punch…whamo! Instant migraine.
Don’t get me wrong, I was learning, learning all sorts of stuff, but I wasn’t making the big break through that the masters of legends made.
Finally, having had enough of the headache punches, I thought of my instructor. He had made the breakthrough, yet he wasn’t a huge blast of power, he was gnelte, and polite, and modest, and humble, and…hmmm.
So I thought about Karate, and something my instructor said…A tight fist is a heavy fist.
And the light went on.
I had been striking with all my power, tensing my whole body, exploding massive amounts of energy. He was like a noodle, flicking little jolts that incapacitated.
So I started putting my whole body in position, but tightening only the fist. Whole billboards of lights went on.
By tensing the whole body it was like I was crashing a car into a wall, again and again. But one doesn’t break down the wall of the mind, one slips through the chinks and comes out the other side.
Mind you, it wasn’t the snap of kenpo punches, it was the whole body of karate, but the body didn’t tense, it just lined up behind the fist.
The idea that Karate, or any martial art, is nothing more than a blast of energy and power and all that…is totally and utterly false.
I lost my headaches, I discovered ways of rolling power through my tan tien and snapping it. It was more shaolin than karate, but it was really just true karate, the karate that the masters of old, who had had more direct connection to shaolin, had practiced.
It was more tai chi chuan than karate, but it was really just true Karate.
It was so many things. It was energy made liquid, energy pulsed, energy gentle…there was so much potential here it is almost overwhelming.
It was more than body…it was an energy body that I lived in. Drop on by Learn Karate Online and sample a free lesson. Sample it carefully, because you’ll notice that I don’t move hard and fast, I move deliberately and with awareness. True Karate, and it is not longer a car crash.
A lot of people blink at the way I run my Karate business. I’m referring to my internet martial arts business.
One, I do everything I can to keep my prices down. The reason is simple…competiveness. I watch guys put their ads up and sell their CD/DVDs for $148, $349, $732, or whatever…and they make a killing, for two months. Then their business drops to nothing, and they are left shopping for gimmicks to sell.
I, on the other hand, keep the price at $10 per disk, and I even keep the S&H reasonable. The price is low enough that people can take a chance, and people order from me, and they can order again and again, and I can take my time and find what works, make sure the product is well received, fix any mistakes, and…my growth is slow, but it never crashes.
In addition, I make sure I do the following…
Ship orders the morning of the very next biz day. I get an order in before 8 in the morning, and their is a good chance it is going out right then!
I try to answer all emails or address all blog comments within a couple of hours. Obviously if I’m working on a big project, got eight windows open, running programs madly, I can’t stop everything for a single email…but I sometimes do.
On those extremely rare occasions that I do get a complaint or there is a problem with an order, I try to handle it within one hour. I often toss in a freebie in the event of a complaint.
I understand that I exist only by the good will of my fellow man…and I work hard to deserve that good will.
Okey dokey, that’s how and why I run my karate business the way I do. I write a little blurb like this every six months or so just to let people know. Check out my site, Learn Karate Online. You’ll find the best martial arts at the best prices. Period.
Check out the video, then I’ll tell you my favorite three Nasty Karate Tricks. They’ll help you end any fight.
The first one is to break the fingers. Somebody grabs you, you grab their finger and bend it back and break it. Nothing fancy about this…just break it. What? You want to control politely? What if the guy has a friend? What if he jumps back and pulls out a gun? When push comes to shove and a real fight is about to pop, snap his finger and then do number two.
Number two…kick him in the apples. Short, sweet, and to the point, a kick in the cojones will bend the largest mugger at the knees, and, got to admit it, there is nothing more sweet than watching some bad ass doofus puke his pudding.
Now, that all said, save this trick for when your life is truly in danger, you can’t use it on the mat, or to control your drunk Uncle Bob…poke him in the eye. I mean, stick your finger in his eye up to the knuckle.
You can see why I say hold back on this one until your life is truly at stake. Crippling, maiming, putting some guy in the dark for his life…it is cruel punishment.
Anyway, those are my three tried and true favorite Karate tricks, and they will work every time. Check out Learn Karate Online if you want some great training tips, strong punches, and…hey, there’s even a free ‘mini-lesson’ on the site!
Back in the sixties real karate instructors differed in their opinions towards freestyle. Yes, it was necessary to keep students in the door, but there was freestyle, and there was fighting. Check out the video, my student is really trying to stab me, and I use control instead of fighting to manage him. I’ll tell you about one of the wildest tournaments ever right below that.
My school went to a big tournament in San Francisco.
During one of the matches one of the brown belts jammed his finger, and the second bone on one of his fingers actually came out of the socket and slid over the third bone. The refs looked at it, said he had to go to a hospital and have somebody straighten it out. He wanted to fight, however, so he pulled it out himself and kept fighting.
Interestingly, in spite of this type of die hard enthusiasm, my instructor pulled the entire school out and went home. Well, he didn’t pull them out. He just gathered everybody together and said fighting had little to do with learning how to control an opponent through kumite. He said we were free to remain, and then he left. Everybody followed him.
He was right. Fighting is for people who don’t know the martial arts. A person who knows the martial arts controls his opponent. He predicts him, manipulates him, and does what he will with him.
That’s the difference, of course, between real karate and somebody who likes to fight, and that’s the difference between sport and a real martial art. Check out the variety of different Karate programs at Monster Martial Arts.
The one thing I am always asked aout, as an instructor, is what do you do about the MMA Jujitsu type of attack. This isn’t just jujitsu, it’s wrestling, or any art where you take somebody down.
The attack is dive with a grab for the leg, and zingo bingo, you’re on the ground. At least, that’s the way it is in the MMA and the UFC.
Well, not really. You’ll notice that fighters in the octagon are relying on the single leg takedown less and less.
And, it used to be that nobody would even try it. Just too risky, somebody could clock you in the head while you’re bent over grabbing a leg, or maybe just knee you in the face. It just wasn’t a good attack.
What happened to make it popular?
What happened is that people who specialized in it entered the ring. People who spent hours a day working on that one martial arts technique look unbeatable, so everybody decided that was the unbeatable technique.
What they should have done was realize that it wasn’t the technique, it was the dedicated training regimen. You put in an hour a day on single leg takedowns for a year and you will be able to do them to most people. Unless that ‘people’ has spent an hour a dya learning how to avoid that martial arts technique.
I am not attacking MMA or Jujitsu, or wrestling or any other sport. I am just advocating that people need to get more dedicated, then such thigns as the single leg takedown won’t look so great.
Truth, you need to be a well rounded martial artist with good conditioning and a healthy mind set.
Truth, while the single leg takedown is a great technique, you may want to avoid it on the street. It’s dangerous to roll around in the blood and the mud and the beer…and while the friends of the guy you’re fighting are coming arunning.
If you want a really well rounded approach to the martial arts, check out Monster Martial Arts. There’s an article there which will detail how to round yourself out. It is called ‘What’s Wrong with the Art?’ I hope it will help abuse people of lop sided training methods that result in such things as putting MMA Jujitsu v Classical Martial Arts.
One of the neatest training devices is a simple box of sand. You make a spear hand and thrust downward. As time passes, you get deeper and deeper, and you learn how to be ore intense and demand that extra inch out of yourself.
Interesting, this is a method that is supposed to be used for sharpening knives. If you want a real sharp knife, theory goes, you thrust knife down, and the sand whittles away at the edge.
Mind you, I have not played with this, so use at your own risk. And let me know if your knife gets damaged. I’ll put the results in ablog.
Anyway, your hand won’t get damaged by thrusting it into a bucket of sand. As a matter of fact, the fingers will become able to stand impact, your spearhand will start to shine, and you will have martial arts weapon of unusual intent.
Of course, your hand might look a little gnarly, but that’s okay. Just hold up your hand and put a crazed expression on your face and nobody is going to want to fight you. Grin.
Have a great day, and if you want some great tips on toughening the hand, specifically how to have the hardeat punch, check out the book I’ve written. It is called The Punch, and it is at Monster Martial Arts.