The Zen Simplicity of Martial Arts

To Be or Not to Be in the Martial Arts

To the beginner the martial arts, and this includes Karate, Kung Fu, Aikido, Tai Chi Chuan, and all other martial disciplines, can be less than simple. There is simply an overwhelm of information, a ‘disgruntlement’ of the mind at the massive influx of new materials.

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Click on the cover!

The simple truth, however, is that the truth is simple.

Why these subjects, be they karate or jujitsu or whatever, would not be simple, once once absorbed, is merely the result of engaging the mind to try and describe what is ‘not mind.’

For instance, in the beginning one must wade through instructions concerning physics, anatomy, history, philosophy, and so on. This is made more complex as different arts propose different structure and on many levels, and then often disagree.

The harmony of Aikido is similar to the absorption of Tai Chi Chuan, but there is sufficient difference to argue the terminology.

The striking methods of Wing Chun and boxing, though at heart still just a strike, can be argued ad infinitum.

But in the end, proven by simple and direct experience, a human being is constructed of flesh (body), mind (memories), and spirit (awareness). Thus, all physics, which is the heart of all sciences, can be rendered to a fine simplicity.

The fact is that the discipline of the martial arts focuses on doing to the exclusion of the mind, and thus is achieved enlightenment. Enlightenment is considered, from the unique viewpoint of an accomplished martial arts discipline, to be aware of the self as awareness.

And, yes, the above statement, so simple, is the summation that can be applied on any and all levels of all martial arts.

To do a single act, a kata or technique, a kick or throw, until there is no thought (no interference from the mind), and is intuitive, opens the door to enlightenment.

For once one looks at a fist approaching the face in terms of simple survival, one will begin to look at the approach of the universe in the same way.

Not an overwhelm of factors to be adjusted through eternal tweakings of computations, but a simple ‘Is it going to hit me or not.’

Followed by a simple, ‘Do I block or get out of the way.’

Not complex at all.

The unfortunate truth, however, is that man insists on his own significance in the universe by creating endless paradigm for his actions.

Thus we have reasons of physics, disagreements of anatomy, descriptions of philosophy, and all filtered through the various misunderstandings inherent in unaccomplished and divergent martial arts.

And these are all justifications for one’s existence.

‘To be or not to be,’ placed in endless loop.

But the simple truth is if one practices the discipline, and this of widely varied arts such as Karate or Aikido,Tai Chi Chuan or Kenpo, then one is engaged in ignoring the mind; one is functioning in an emptiness of reason and a purity of awareness.

Survival blots out psychological ramifications, and puts an end to philosophical meanderings – and justifications – of the awareness trying to look at itself, but so very unable.

To sum, it is not all the reasons, but the source of reason, the ‘I am,’ that is responsible for conundrum, and the resolution therewith.

The easiest way to cut through the fog of the martial arts, to ignore the mind and to find the truth of the self, is through the logic of matrixing. To matrix the martial arts is to rid the art of silly significance, and to place all the elements and pieces in the correct and easily assimilate-able order.

Matrixing can be found at MonsterMartialArts.com. Further juxtapositions of martial arts philosophy, real as opposed to the justifications of students mired in the endless mirrors of their own minds, can be read at ChurchofMartialArts.com.

Speed Drilling in Karate

Newsletter 703
The Secret of Speed in the Martial Arts

Let’s talk about speed in the martial arts.

We used to have this exercise
back at the Kang Duk Won
it was called ‘Speed of speed.’
And,
it was brutal.
You faced your partner,
and there was only one attack:
a chop to the neck,
you turn the hand
so the flat of the hand strikes the shoulder.
What made it brutal was the times
when you collided with your partner.
Neither of you was faster,
and you both ended up hurting.

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speed kick in karate


 
Believe me,
as stupid as it sounds,
you won’t see this exercise
anywhere in the martial arts.
It just hurts too much.

Yet,
here’s the thing,
after a few months of doing this,
of suffering bone bruises to the forearms
you found that you were faster.
Some lower belt would come in
and he’d just start to twitch
and…WHAM!
you were hitting his shoulder so hard
his head near fell off!

Now,
I tried teaching that,
and people didn’t want to learn it.
Man,the groans and moans.
So I persisted,
and had small classes
of REALLY tough martial artists,
but I kept thinking about speed.

I thought about the kenpo
circularity of motion theories and drills,
but hitting somebody ten times in a second
didn’t allow one to get the body behind any of the strikes.
Hmmm.
So you have to be fast in the intuitive sense,
in the sense that Speed of Speed built up,
of seeing when somebody was starting to move,
and moving before him.
THAT was when you could get the whole body behind the strike.

So,
have you ever watched the Magnificent Seven?
The scene where Yul Brynner claps his hands?

I started out with the hands apart,
standing in a back stance,
and the partner has to close the distance
and punch the chest before the hands clap.
Worked like a charm.
Easy to do,
not so brutal,
and directly applied to increasing power through weight.

And,
there were variations I tried,
one of them,
of unusual interest,
is standing to the side with a stop watch.
Tell somebody to punch when they hear the stop watch click,
and click the stop watch a second time when the punch touches the target.
Interestingly,
times were being measured in a full second.
Yes.
That long.
No chance at all
of the punch being fast enough to work.
But what turned the trick
was to stand behind the person being punched,
and let the person watch you click the stop watch.
Man,
then they sped up,
and that was because you got rid of all reaction time,
and the puncher could see and anticipate.

But isn’t that what it is all about?
When somebody is about to punch
you don’t wait for the punch,
you look,
you examine,
you analyze,
you predict when it is coming.

Usually it starts with some kind of emotional set up,
but with the stop watch there was no emotion
and guys could get past the idea of emotion,
get past fooling each other with twitches and tells,
and directly view the factors of the strike.
People got fast real fast,
and we could tailor the strikes,
increase speed in everything
from blocks to kicks to whatever.

Now,
you can use this data,
do the exercises,
make your own exercises,
have some real fun,
and get past a lot of stuff,
and increase speed in the one area
that really matters,
putting weight behind a real strike.

And,
if you have a little extra hair on your chest,
you can always try speed of speed.
To this day
I know that that exercise,
as crude and brutal as it was,
was the one that made the real difference in me.

Okay,
if you want to increase speed
because you have perfect alignment in your body,
and perfect alignment WILL increase your speed,
then check out the Master Instructor Course.

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4-master-instructor-course/

AND,
BTW,
I’ve been fooling around
making a few sites just for grins and giggles,
so try this one…

http://combatselfdefence.wordpress.com

It’s aimed at explaining things about matrixing and neutronics,
and how they apply to the martial arts.
It’s not for everybody,
and I’m not done with it,
I’ll be working on it as time goes by,
but it’s at a point where
I thought people would appreciate it,
maybe even have some insight as to what they would like on it.
Feel free to leave comments on the site,
what you think,
any advice,
whatever.
It actually gets to me
faster than an email.

Okay,
it’s the middle of summer
so act like it!
Work out till you sweat COPIOUSLY,
and enjoy an occasional beverage.

Have a great and work out filled weekend!
I
Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4-master-instructor-course/

Don’t forget to subscribe to this blog…top of the sidebar.

Why We Wear Martial Arts Uniforms…

To Gi or not to Gi, that is the Martial Arts Question…

I put on my first gi back in 1967. It was pretty cool, my school had actually found a company that could supply us regularly. Very difficult to find sometimes, back then. We didn’t mind the $15 we had to pay.

It was yellowish, too short, looked ridiculous, but I found something interesting: it taught you how to focus. When you punched right it ‘popped!’

So I made everything I did pop, every kind of kick and punch and even block that I could…I popped.

I bought my first Tokaido, and it was a day in heaven. I’m not a clothes hound, but when I stepped on to the mat in that Tokaido, I felt…BIG!

And, my techniques were better. It took more power to pop, the material was thicker.

Of course, I had to buy the Tokaido, I had been made into an instructor, and I was told to look the part, or else!

I wore that uniform til it literally disintegrated. I went through the ‘don’t wash’ period, for a couple of weeks. Then the smell made me realize that I wanted to wash it, and I used to wash it and press it and fold it with absolute devotion and respect.

Yet I knew, always, that it was always in my mind. It was my uniform, my way of ‘preparing’ for my mock combat, my lessons in mortality and immortality.

Don’t want to wear one? That’s cool. Choice.

But look inside the uniform first, look under the skin. Check out to see whether you have the requisite pride, and in the proper degree and form, before you hold them in disregard.

As for me, they’ll have to pry my gi from my cold, dead…body.

Have a great work out! Al from monstermartialarts.

Check out the new Kenpo Karate book!

Five Steps to a Perfect Martial Arts Kiai!

Making your Kiai a real ‘Spirit Shout!’

All too often people describe it as a “spirit yell”, but this only scratches the surface, and it is a horrible translation. If we look at the word in kanji, you will see that it is made up 2 characters.  The first is Ki ( ? ), this is the character for energy, whether you call it chi, qi, or prana.  The second is Ai ( ? ) meaning harmony. Some of you may notice something here, those are the same 2 character as Aikido ( ??? ) but in a different order.  Thus “fighting yell” doesn’t enter into a proper translation.

So, a kiai, isn’t a fighting scream, but rather any sound that brings your energy into harmony with the situation.  Nobody ever talks about it anymore but this could be a sob, a laugh, a sigh, or scream to bring all your force to bear in a fight.

Kang-Duk-Won-side-ad
Since nobody ever has to explain how to laugh or cry, let us turn our attention to the application of “bringing the force to bear in a fight” or spirit yell.

If you visit enough other places you will no doubt see people, saying the word “kiai” or “kiup” (the Korean pronunciation) with no more enthusiasm than a yawn.  This is useless, utterly useless.

Kenpo says there are 5 reasons to do a Kiai

1. make sure you are breathing when you are executing a technique
2. distract your opponent
3. attract attention
4. tighten your muscles, thus protecting your body.
5. bring power to your technique.

Numbers 2, 3, and 5 will not work AT ALL if you are wimpy and quiet.

When you watch the old martial arts movies, you don’t see people giving a kiai, like a child who is in trouble being asked to confess.  It is loud, bold and proud.

More than once  people tell me “it is embarrassing to scream”, to which my response is “SO WHAT!  If I have to defend myself, I will give a kiai, and if the bad guy laughs at me, I don’t care.  Regardless how they respond, whether it is shock, laughter, or they turn to run, that is going to give me my opening”.

Did Bruce Lee care about what people thought? No!  He said (paraphrasing here) “every technique should have a life of its own, part of that is giving it a unique sound.”  This is why he was making sounds, that even other martial artists thought, were weird.

A good kiai comes from the Dan Tien (Tanden), if it helps, think of it as coming from the diaphragm. In theater, they call this “projecting” so the people in the nosebleed seats can hear you.  To go along with what Bruce said, it can be any sound, but “kiai” is not an Onomatopoeia, so please don’t use that as your sound.  Even the 1970s corny movie “hi-ya” is less annoying than “kiai”.

My Sensei says “if a Kiai is done correctly, you don’t go horse”.  This is true, but if you aren’t doing a proper kiai now, it will likely take a bit of practice to figure out how to be all “heavy metal concert” on it, without hurting your voice.

Here is a REALLY good article about what it means to bow in the martial arts.

Is it Time for Modern Weapons to be in Martial Arts Classes?

Martial Arts Taken to the Mat…

Guest blog by Alaric Dailey

Shihan would say “best defense is ‘please don’t hurt me’ and if they continue to harass or intimidate you, only then do you try to take the gun from them”. My sensei would tend to agree with him, and why shouldn’t he, after all Shihan was his Sensei.

Nick Cerio didn’t feel that way, as a police officer he felt that the inclusion of defenses against modern weapons was absolutely necessary. So with Ed Parkers blessing Cerio branched Kenpo to include some modifications including adding gun defenses.

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The Israeli Defense Force has to deal with guns all the time, so Krav Maga includes gun defenses.

I personally feel, that given the fact that above the age of twelve most fights include a weapon or multiple attackers, you must start addressing modern weapons.  Of course I also tend to agree with Shihan, and diffuse the situation if possible. However, I think you should also be trained how to handle such a situation properly, not making mistakes like trying a disarm and ending up wrestling over the gun, and having it pointed at yourself.

Gun safety, especially among children becomes more important every day.

Handling someone with a weapon, and especially a gun, is a dangerous thing to do. The techniques should be tested, and proven.  Thus, my personal opinion is to that the best place to borrow these modern weapon techniques from systems that must defend against them on a day to day basis.  Feel free to look around and compare, but the best most realistic techniques out there are from Krav maga.  Not only are these techniques easy to learn, no non-sense, and realistic, they are proven effective, which is why law-enforcement teaches them all over the world.

So as you may have guessed, I feel it is foolhardy to proclaim that you teach self-defense and not teach modern weapon defenses. Here are some of the ideas that I think should be incorporated into training, besides things like disarms.

1. Teaching everyone not to touch a gun they have found (contamination of evidence), children should get an adult, adults should call law enforcement.

2. Safe gun handling, handing off a weapon, clearing a weapon etc.

3 .Marksmanship

4. First aid/CPR and treatment of combat wounds.  A great choice would be EMT training, since most “First aid courses” are simply courses of “call 911″. If you are not qualified to teach these courses yourself, make sure students have access to those classes.

5. how to deal with an active shooter situation.

As for myself, when I open my own school, I intend to make regular trips to the range, and encourage my students to join me, Also I intend to ask my students to pursue getting their own conceal carry permits.

Alaric Daily began practicing the martial arts in 1992. Martial Art he has studied include Pangainoon, Karate, Kenpo, Wing Chun, Krav Maga, Judo, Jujitsu, Aikido, Bagua Zhang, and Tai Chi Chuan.

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Mugger Speaks Out for Self Defense!

Self Defense for a Mugger!

Okay. I’m a mugger! Got to earn a living, and I usually earn it on shmucks like you. I simply come up behind you and conk you with a baseball bat and take all your money while you’re tossin’ the ball in snoozeville.

My favorite tool is a knife. A sword ain’t bad, but the man in blue might arrest me if he sees me with one. Heck, he might even shoot me!
Don‘t want that, man.
So I like a knife. You sneak up, stick the blade up against the throat, and whisper, and the fool fills his pants and empties his wallet at the same time!
Hah!

gung fu bookAnyway, one thing I hate is people who scream.
I mean, can’t a guy get a little peace and quiet on the job? Can’t ya just dry up and give me your wallet? Why do you have to make all that noise? Don’t you know it tends to draw a crowd? And I don’t want no crowd around me when I work. Ya know?

And, talkin’ about it, I also don’t want nobody throwin’ stuff at me.
Ya know, I had a guy the other day threw a bunch of pennies, right out of his pocket, fer Chrissake, threw some pennies at me and yelled! Scared me half to death, and one of those pennies actually hit me in the eye! Man, I was runnin’ and cryin’ all at the same time, and, let me tell you, it didn’t feel good!
So knock that crap off! No throwin’ stuff or makin’ a bunch of noise.
I mean, gimme a break, eh?

But the worst thing ever is when I’m tryin’ to mug somebody, and he has a knife hisself!
I mean, if a guy like that sees me coming, and he’s got a knife in a slick, little holster under his jacket flap, or something like that, he might get it out and actually stick me! Can you believe the nerve of the guy?
And what would the other muggers think if it was a …(choke)… a girl that stuck me!? Man, the shame!
I mean, lay off on that fightin’ back stuff. I just want your money, I don’t want no trip to the bone factory!

So there ya go, just a couple of things that tick me off, and that I don’t want you doing. Keep ‘em in mind cause it’ll help me do my job. Keeps me off welfare, ya know?

About the author: Al Case is the webmaster at MonsterMartialArts.com. Check out his Blinding Steel Course, the fastest and most efficient way to stick a mugger in the world!

 

Karate Kata…How Good Are They?

Martial Arts Kata, Good or Bad?

in the Martial Arts Kata are often translated as martial arts forms, so I use the terms interchangeably.

Bruce Lee said in “The Tao of Jeet Kune Do” the following about forms:

“Too much horsing around with unrealistic stances and classic forms and rituals is just too artificial and mechanical, and doesn’t really prepare the student for actual combat.”

martial arts karate kataIs this true? Or is it meaningful, do forms actually teach you combat? Certainly looking at Pinan/Heian 1, or Kenpo Long 1, you have to wonder, is this meaningful? Are they honestly expecting me to drop the opposite hand when I block and punch?  And why are they having me drop my hands when in sparring they tell me to keep my hands up?

Even with something so entrenched as Sanchin, or the Sil Lum Tao those that lack correct teaching have to wonder, “how is this teaching me to fight?”.

In stark contrast are kata such as sanseirui, where it is very apparent that the kata is truly a combat scenario that captured and formalized into a form. This is evidenced by the lack of symmetry in the form, you don’t have “do the exact same thing on the other side” or “first do it on the right, then on the left”.

But do any of them provide you with anything useful? Or do they lock you into a routine.

Bruce was an incredible man, certainly what he said must have some value.  Besides, if not for forms, how do we transmit the style, untarnished, to the next generation?

The problem with Bruce, is that he was amazing. He was so amazing that somewhere along the line he seems to have forgotten that you have to explain to a new student how to make a fist, not to punch with the flat part of your fist, to line up the bones, to add CBM.  We can see that he knew this, for he said (paraphrasing here) “before I learned to punch, a punch was just a punch, while I was learning, a punch was much more than a punch.  Now, a punch is just a punch”.  However, he repeatedly wanted to throw away all the tools that are used to learn basics.

To quote my sensei, “you have to have a set of basics before you start learning to break free of the forms”.

I feel that all forms are intended to serve a purpose, but what is that purpose?

Let us start with the so simple that they are obnoxious forms, like the early Kenpo forms and the Pinans.  They are not meant to be combat forms, they are meant to be a way to train symmetry, and to familiarize you with the “alphabet of movement” that your system trains.  Think of the movements in these forms as “this is my footwork, these are my blocks, these are my strikes,  there are many like them, but these are mine”.  Symmetry is important, you need to be able to block, thrust, flick, parry and strike on both sides, these forms teach you exactly that, and they force you to practice equally on both sides.  Bruce may have been so good that he only needed five techniques and only those on his lead side, but that doesn’t account for most people, nor does it address what you are supposed to do if you get injured during combat.

So basic, boring forms have a purpose, even if it is only training.  However, when we go back to the question of dropping the hand, you do have to stop and wonder why practice something that we would never want to do in combat.   This is where I personally feel that some of these forms are less valuable than they could be.

Sanchin appears to be one of these boring beginner forms; however, it is an exceptional kata, Please see the earlier article I wrote on Sanchin (add a link to the other blog post).  My sensei was fond of saying that he could tell your belt level by watching your performance of Sanchin.

The Sil lum tao, is also a form that appears to be on the boring scale, however, it is a very internal form. It is meant to isolate the hand movements used in Wing Chun so they can be practiced separately from any foot movement, and to build Chi power.  These 2 aspects mean that it can be practiced and improved on for the rest of your life, just like Sanchin.

None of the seemingly boring kata teach you to fight, not even sanchin.  They may teach you many critical elements of fighting, blocks and strikes that you can combine, a clear calm mind, the ability to take a hit and continue. These things and more can be learned from kata.

Learning to fight from a kata though?  That is tough, there are people that have been reputed to have done so, I have a very hard time believing that.

In my mind the only way to improve reflexes, and learn to handle unexpected things is to get into sparring (at all contact levels) with as many different people as possible.  Try to get with people of different levels, different arts, and no arts.

In my personal opinion, I feel kata are very important, both for handing down the style, uncompromised. They are critical for training your body to use all the different tools in the styles toolbox.

I do not feel that they are a prison, rather an encyclopedia of motion and much more.  In my mind all kata should give you as many tools as Sanchin, Sil lum tao and Sanseirui.   However, if the form teaches you to do dangerous things, like drop your hands, you might want to re-evaluate the validity of that particular form.

If you want to align and make logical your Martial Arts Kata, check out the Master Instructor Course at MonsterMartialArts.com.

How to Defend Against Dogs with Martial Arts

Martial Arts Defense Against Killer Dogs

Is this going to be a GREAT week or what?
Eh?
I mean,
the stars are in alignment,
the tea leaves are propitious,
and,
if that isn’t enough…
you get to work out!

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Of all them prophetic devices…
only the work out is the sure thing,
so I think I’ll work out twice!

Oinkly doggie.
Let’s leap right into the good stuff,
let’s talking about taking out attack trained,
killer vicious curs called…
guard dogs.

I was ten years old,
was cutting across a neighbors estate on my bicycle
and a big, old weimaraner
who I had known and played with,
attacked me.
Dragged me off the bicycle
and I managed to steer the falling bike
towards the property line,
and I fell into the street.
Off the property.
The guard dog,
who I had known and played with,
petted and wrestled with,
growled and snapped at me,
but was stopped by the property line.

Okay.
Guards dogs gone wild.
you know?

So I was afraid of dogs after that.
Then,
when I was eleven,
my older brother gave me his paper route.
And,
on one of the streets,
you guessed it,
a dog.
Not a guard dog,
but he would run into the street
and chase me.
I would peddle and cry.
And I asked my brother what he did about the dog.
“I kick it.”
It’s got to reach you,
so when it jumps,
I kick it.

I envisioned kicking,
even practiced it a bit,
and,
the next day,
I was delivering papers,
and,
you guessed it,
the dog comes chasing after me!

Man,
I stomped that sucker right in the face.
He yipped and ran.
And,
a half hour later,
I rode past that house again.
I was feeling a bit proud,
maybe even a bit blood thirsty,
hoping that dog would attack me again
so I could nail his face with my
Sunday go to meeting shoes.
(They were the only hard soles I had)

There were teeth on the ground!
I had actually knocked his teeth out!
HAHAHAHA!

And,
over the years,
I think about the A$$whole
who owned that dog.
Cause it’s the owner that should be kicked,
not the dog.
I’ll bet the owner thought it was funny,
his lights were on,
he let the dog out,
laughed when the paper boy ran.

Well,
he was feeding that dog mush with a spoon now!

Okay.
That sets us up.
Let’s talk about Monkeyland.

We have dogs up here.
Truth,
I LOVE dogs.
I hike all over with them.
I throw sticks.
I even swim with them!

Nothing is better than a big, old mutt
with a wet, sloppy tongue.
Nothing.

So we’ve got three dogs.
One is a hundred pound lab.
Big frigging tongue on that boy!
The other two are Mallenois.
Mother and pup.
Mallenois are like under sized german shepherds.
And,
they are highly prized as guard dogs.
My partner brought them up,
introduced the mother,
who was highly trained,
as a killer.

Well,
that’s not really what we’re about at Monkeyland,
but he’s my partner’s,
so now we have a highly trained attack dog.

Here’s the bad news.
The mother is loving,
one of the most loving dogs I have ever seen.
It is…
over loving.
Frantic.
Desparate.
You can’t go outside without the dog leaping on you,
hugging you,
trying to curl around your feet,
prostating itself and
…just wanting love.

The trainer,
you see,
has done a number on her.
Probably a good trainer.
My opinion,
however,
is that the dog will protect instinctively.
Doesn’t need to be trained to harm a human being.
In fact,
I think the training,
to harm another human being,
is a crime.
And what it has done to that poor dog…
Lord.
That poor dog is just out of its mind.

It’s always the owner,
in this case the trainer,
you know?

Anyway,
before I rant on a$$wholes who train dogs,
let’s talk about taking out a dog
that has been trained to harm human beings.

I went out on the front porch to do a work out.
Beautiful out there.
A mile of green valley and blue skies.
High, puffy clouds wafting across the sky.
A hint of breeze to cool off the work out
and let it go even longer.

Paradise,
you know?

BUT,
the dog wants love.
Is desperate for love.
And it crawls under my feet,
tries to jump on me.
So I practice my footwork,
anticipating directions,
and the dog is falling into space,
can’t keep up,
even falling down.

Hey!
This is fun!
BUT,
somewhere in there,
the attack responses are triggered.
The dog leaps at me.

Remember that dog I played with?
And who dragged me off my bike?
Man,
here it as,
all over again.

Not quite vicious,
but the line between love and hate,
usually large,
has been slipped over.
The dog leaps at me,
snapping at my wrists.
I realize that this is one of the devices
that the trainer must have used.
Play,
slap around,
get it to go lightly vicious.
A game,
you know?

But the A$$whole trainer
obviously didn’t know martial arts.

I was doing Tai Chi at the time,
the first move,
ward off.
The dog leaped,
I shuffled back slightly,
bowed my belly in,
and held my arms out,
the dog was in my space,
and I lowered my arm so that the forearm was at the neck,
turned my hips,
and threw the dog.

Man,
you have never seen such a quick and efficient throw.
That dog just flipped on its side.

It leaped at me.
I did golden rooster,
a simple knee,
and the dog bounced off the point of the knee and fell back.
Yipping!

I smiled,
cocked my head,
and held my hand out and motioned to the dog like Bruce Lee.
Come on.

The dog went for the feet.
I was wearing soft shoes,
so I merely stepped in front of my left foot with my right,
then,
when the dog was fooled,
slapped it in the head with a left sole behind the right leg.
Came right out of nowhere,
rocked that momma like there was no tomorrow.

Now,
I was being incredibly soft.
I LOVE dogs.
Even attack trained vicious guard dogs.
It’s the owner,
you know?

But I moved across that porch,
befuddling,
confounding,
confusing,
and threw that dog this way and that.
Didn’t use any force.
Just slipped and turned,
gave the dog the target,
then withdrew it.

And,
after a while,
the dog wasn’t sure what to do.
In the game it had been trained in,
it won,
got a cookie for savaging a wrist or ankle.
Got loving for biting the padded mid section.
Here,
there was no midsection.
And the ankles bit back and were gone.
And the wrists,
oh Lord,
going for the wrists
was a fool’s errand.
That always resulted in a disappearing target,
and a dog body flipped on it’s side,
and a series of Karate punches to the belly.
Soft punches.
And,
grin,
I avoided any of the Tai Chi strikes.
I didn’t want to kill the dog.

So,
that’s how you handle an attack trained
vicious,
killer guard dog.

Karate will work fine,
or any other art,
but remember that it is play here,
and that you are,
in essence,
undoing what the dog has been trained to do.
And,
remember,
it is always the owner.

The guard dog,
any dog,
is just one of God’s critters,
and we are charged with taking care of them.
Not using them against our fellow man,
beyond their natural protectiveness.

And,
it makes me think,
there are a few people I’d like to ‘de-train’
a few politicians.
Hmmm.
Maybe that’s a story for another time,
eh?

Have a great and glorious work out!
And don’t forget to pet your dog,
and play with him every day.
especially if he’s been attack trained.
Grin.

Al

Here’s the link for Matrix Tai Chi Chuan.
That’s the stuff I use,
and I recommend it HIGHLY!

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2ba-matrix-tai-chi-chuan/

Is it Possible to have Perfect Martial Arts?

Chess and the First Move in the Martial Arts

I recently wrote on article on ‘Beyond Western Muscles and the Martial Arts,’ and in that article I mentioned an idea I had come across many years ago: that in a perfect chess game white will win for the simple reason that it moved first.

This has obvious implications in the martial arts. Two combatants edging towards each other, the perfect gunfight, searching for that threshold of distance wherein they can strike first and without getting struck.

Some people didn’t agree with this. I thought it a simple matter of extrapolating Einstein’s theory of relativity, and the resulting corollaries in subatomic physics, but, alas, I guess I was not…the first to move.

Then I had an interesting email wherein the fellow said that if two tai chi masters fight, the one who moves first will always lose.

Lord! Now I didn’t know what to think!

Except (aha!), if one understands that the perfect state of consciousness (awareness) is to consider oneself the center of the universe, and that everything revolves around oneself, and that there is no proof that anything (or entity) exists, except as is created by the being at the center of the universe.

This theory holds up to the concept that at the center of all motion is motionlessness. This theory finally achieves the concept of perfection in the martial arts, and in the whole universe!

In this realm thought ceases to be motion, and becomes the ultimate no motion.

Which brings us to the grand conclusion.

If one doesn’t move first, then one will win. This fulfills the highest goals of the the martial arts, defines the highest attributes of an individual, and results in the cessation of all wars for an everlasting reign of peace on earth.

After, of course, one puts a big juicy, raw steak on his eyeball.

If you want perfection in your fighting abilities you have to matrix your martial arts. Go to Monster Martial Arts and find out what Matrixing is.

If you like martial arts humor you should check out the Case Histories column at Monster Martial Arts.

The One Thing That Makes Me Mad About Martial Artists

‘Just one thing makes you mad about Martial Artists, Al?’ you ask.

Yeah, really, just one thing.

Do you remember back when you were first starting, and you would encounter the attitude that ‘my school is best/my art is best.’

martial arts anger

I’m so mad I could hit…the air!

 
Now, after having done a few martial arts you have the overall picture, and you know that not one art is best.

And, if you are pretty savvy, you understand that people need to think their art is best, at least in the beginning. It is a mark of loyalty, of fanaticism that is necessary to truly immerse yourself in your studies.

You need that degree of commitment if you are really going to learn anything.

Martial Arts are tough, and it takes a person with zeal to make it through them.

Now, having said that, what is the one thing that makes me mad about Martial Artists?

Well, interestingly enough, it is an extrapolation of that stupidity of which we are all necessarily guilty.

It is an attitude that, since we have done martial arts we know everything.

It is a stopping point that happens after somebody has learned something significant, and then doesn’t know how to proceed, and thus doesn’t want to proceed, and falls back on, here it is, ‘I know that/we have that in our system.’

Yep, it is the refusal to move, the inability to learn more, and simply because we think we know it all.

But if you knew it all you could make an orange appear in your hand. Out of nothing.

Or vaporize a rock, into nothing, without the pesky atomic explosion that might accomplish such folderol.

Now, I encounter that attitude more than most, and this because I have gone past it. There is a residue, you see, which accumulates. And this residue of which I speak insulates those who wish to know, but don’t know how, who have succumbed to the one thing that pisses me off about martial artists.

So, you don’t know everything, and I say, ‘Look, here is this matrixing thing, and it can show you what you don’t know! Doesn’t matter if you don’t know what you don’t know, it works for everybody, and it finds out what you don’t know, even if it is different from what everybody else doesn’t know!’

Most people are polite, think I am just drumming up a little internet business with an internet gimmick, and they simply slide over my claims of a science…and the fact that I have over 600 pages of testimonials, and almost no detractors.

Well, I have a few detractors, but the odd thing–every one of those detractors has never taken one of my courses!

But to return to the sane ones, most martial artists smile, relax in their hard won competence, and say, ‘Oh, yeah, I understand what he’s saying, so I must have that in my art. No need to look.’

But if asked if they have ever seen a matrix graph? Whether they have ever come across something called a matrix of blocks? Whether they have seen the martial arts listed as a geometrical arrangement? They can’t say that they have.

Or, sad, if they have, the graph or arrangement is wrong. It is just a compilation of kenpo (or other) techniques that, given enough techniques, will invariably slide one to the other.

Not a logic, but a happenstance when one has information overload.

Not a slim, streamlined way of understanding all arts, of accessing all arts, but a jumble of everything piled in a bucket so you can’t see the bottom.

Well, there you go, that’s the one thing that makes me mad about Martial Artists. The fact that they have reached the top, and don’t understand it is a beginning for a whole new thing. A relaxation into self-satisfaction, and the end of the climb.

An inability to learn because they think they know it all.

Head over to Monster Martial Arts to find out more about how to start your learning curve upwards again!