The 3 Reasons Why Aikido Doesn’t Work

Why Aikido is not always functional

This guest article was written by Cris Eyza. Cris is the author of ‘Aikido Solution, Eyza Aikijutsu Revolution,’ which can be found on Amazon.

Aikido is a beautiful martial art.

I truly believe that. However, many of its practitioners have asked themselves why it doesn’t work in a fight. Perhaps you are one of them.
Keep on reading: I’m about to present to you the three main reasons for Aikido’s ineffectiveness – which I have discovered during the decade that I practiced the martial art myself internationally.

1. Defensiveness
Aikido only has defensive techniques. The initiative is given up to the enemy, who is in control of the situation – never the aikidoist.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Every martial art needs defensive techniques. Offense doesn’t solve everything. Things happen.
But … it’s only half the story.
Because the purpose of defense is . to get back to offense again!

Here’s a Japanese saying for all the traditional Budo afficionados out there, which illustrates the right attitude to have:
“shinbu ni sente nomi” (Friday, 1997, p. 90)
(In real Budo, there is only the first strike)

Also, it’s really close to impossible to catch a punch with your hand. Same thing when the attacker is armed with a knife, only worse.

2. Over-complication
Over-complication is a big problem in Aikido. There are two sides to this technical over-complication. They are both problematic. I will start with the aspect which is most counter-productive in a fighting situation.
A. Tyranny of choice.
In Aikido, with every attack, the aikidoist has so many techniques to choose from, it’s crazy. The sheer number of basic techniques makes effective decision-making impossible.
These are some of the basic techniques the aikidoist can choose from:
ikkyo
nikyo
sankyo
yonkyo
gokyo
hiji-kime
iriminage
kotegaeshi
shihonage
jujinage
kiriotoshi
kaitennage
gansekiotoshi
aikiotoshi
kokyunage
etc.

B. Endless variations
Now, let’s talk about the other aspect of over-complication. When the attacker strikes at me from a certain angle – let’s say, from above (shomenuchi) – in Aikido, I have a gazillion ways to respond to that strike.
I could go to the inside and the outside. Now, when I go to the inside, I can do a cross-block and grab his wrist for shihonage, cross-block and cut over his hand for kote gaeshi or iriminage, I can grab his hand from above for nikyo, I can block his arm for ikkyo and so on. And also, in which of the two available ways will I circle my body in the second phase of the technique?
And we haven’t even talked about what happens when I step to the outside at the beginning of the technique … But I think you got the picture. There are just as many options. This “tyranny of choice” makes it impossible to choose one of dozens of technical variations, when all the aikidoist needs is . just that one technique . and he needs it fast.

The attack is underway. He has a split-second to react …. But instead of reacting, the aikidoist is paralyzed. “Which one of the plus 20 variations am I going to do?” he thinks to himself. And then … it’s too late. The attacker has already made contact with the aikidoist’s face.

Now, I am not going to give the solutions here. That’s for later. First, we have to finish our discussion of the problems of Aikido. The “diagnosis”, if you will.

3. The mentality
Most Aikidoists have good intentions. They want to learn a martial art with which they can defeat and control an attacker without killing or hurting him. This attitude is not wrong, however, it is very incomplete.
The priority of self-defense is what’s in the name: to defend yourself. Regardless of the cost. It was the attacker’s decision to come at you. His health cannot be the main thought on your mind while he tries to harm or kill you.

That said, I think that needless damage to your opponent is unnecessary. If you already control him or her and it’s not dangerous for you to continue the hold? Sure, keep doing just that until the police arrives. But only then. Don’t be naive.
Another thing. Saying “violence isn’t right” doesn’t work in a fight. When fighting, violence is good. The more violent you are (until you have attained your goal, which is self-preservation) the better.

Dear Aikidoist: I care about you. You are compassionate and benevolent – a trait which is not always common among warriors… But you need to explore the effectiveness of your fighting style. Don’t assume you will just be ready when the moment is there. Learn to defend yourself against those with less noble intentions than you.

A martial art should work. I mean, that’s the deal you make, right? You trade your time, your effort and your hard-earned money for the ability to hold your own when it goes down, not if. But right now, in traditional martial arts like Aikido, nothing less is true.

Osu!

Source used:
Friday, K.F. (1997) Legacies of the Sword. The Kashima-Shinryu and the Samurai Martial Culture. Honolulu, Hawai’i. University of Hawai’i Press.

Check out Cris’s book Self Defense Aikido

Just released a new publication on Five Different Martial Arts

Newsletter 959

New Book Release!
The Book of Five Arts

Just released a new book:
‘The Book of Five Arts’
The title idea comes from Myamoto Musashi’s ‘Book of Five Rings.’
In this book I detail the exact sequence of five martial arts.
Now some of you have seen some of the material.
There is matrix karate, shaolin butterfly, butterfly pa kua chang,
matrix tai chi chuan and Monkey Boxing.

The glory of this book, even if you have seen parts,
is that it includes graphics and charts
showing exactly how the progression of matrices work.
So you look at the karate matrix,
you understand what the blank spots are,
then you look at the shaolin butterfly,
different blank spots,
and so on through each of the five arts.
By the time you’re done you won’t have any blank spots.
At all.
A blank spot in one art will be filled by a technique from another art.
BUT…
you have to do it.
Fortunately,
it is simple.
If you have picked up the books on Perfect Karate,
or the small book I wrote on the butterfly,
you will know exactly what I am doing.
But you likely haven’t seen the work on Matrix Tai Chi.
Not at all.
Even if you’ve done the video course,
this is quite a bit more linear,
easier,
simpler.
And Monkey Boxing.
Ahhh.
That is my art,
and here is how you get started in it.
You’ll see how the basics come together for a perfect matrix.

The book is 160 pages,
over 300 illustrations.
And it doesn’t just show the matrix of five individual arts,
it shows how they come together to make one art,
the real art,
the real path of the martial arts.

So here’s the Amazon link.
The Book of Five Arts
Make sure you give it five stars.

Have a GREAT work out!

Al
https://www.amazon.com/Book-Five-Arts-Martial-Training/dp/1796218332/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=the+book+of+five+arts+al+case&qid=1550014606&s=gateway&sr=8-2-spell

A WIN!
Al,
I’ve sped through the Shaolin Butterfly, am learning the Five Army Tai Chi Chuan and the Butterfly Baguazhang. It seems to me that now I can look at classical forms and simply understand how to do them correctly. It’s absolutely amazing. The practice and learning process basically infuses a student with the basics to make anything work. To correct the whole of an art simply by looking at the forms and playing around with them. I’ve applied this to many classical forms I learned years ago. Thanks so much for the master key to all the martial arts right in my hand.

Justin H

Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.
Bruce Lee

Congrats to new Martial Arts Master Instructor

Newsletter 953

A New Martial Arts Master Instructor!

Super congrats to new Master Instructor
Maj (ret) Paul von Hacker

Here is Paul’s win…

Master Case,
Let me begin by saying I had high expectations and your course exceeded them. You are the most articulate and scientific instructor I’ve ever had and I find that to be exceptionally effective when learning. I’ve studied a number of systems in 25 years and found differing aspects of each that I’ve incorporated into my personal skill set. From a striking perspective I tend to enjoy karate and boxing. Footwork tends to be boxing and pa qua oriented. My ground experience has been almost exclusively Jiu jitsu. The only weapon I’ve ever really studied was dear horned knives and then knives.

From my perspective your master instructor course is a must have. I’ve taught numerous classes in non-martial arts settings. As an Air Force officer it was just part of the job. I am very analytical with regards to instruction so your method truly broke each area down into very concise sub areas that I felt were masterfully pieced together.

(Paul has described the course in detail here, so we move to his conclusion…)

Conclusion: Sir, I have met many skilled practitioners in martial arts. I have worked with men and women whose skill and technique were inspiring but I have never met anyone who put it all together. I was speaking to a 3rd Dan Judo BB in the local area. He runs a school and I have gone over from time to time on sparring night. He has an open mat sparring session to enable his students to spar with other students from various disciplines. I began explaining your matrixed concepts to him and he was a bit cautious. So I explained it this way. If one wanted a degree in computer science one would have to accumulate 120 credits towards the degree, roughly 70% of that is not related to the degree. If one could instead take the 50 credits toward the degree it would take roughly 3 semesters. It is a simplified way to explain it but one I explained it that way he understood. Then we sparred and had a good time and the entire time I was watching, in-between bouts, I found myself using the corrections and the tools and the amazing things is I am not very educated in Judo. The fact that I could ID areas of poor grounding, misalignment, and bad CBM speaks to the simplicity and complexity of the material covered.
On your website you mentioned pricing being low so numerous people could benefit, that is laudable but I recommend you increase your pricing. The work you’ve accumulated it the totality of your life endeavor. Imagine it this may, during WW II the greatest minds on the planet struggled to unlock the atom. In 2019, any student can crack open a book and read the equations used, theories proved, and any semi-educated person could go back in time and explain the concepts easily and concisely to Einstein and his team. You’ve unlocked the atom! You’ve taken this light years from where it was, steam engine and propeller air plane to atom splitting attack sub and to top it all off you’ve articulate enough to explain it in the most concise manner I’ve ever seen.
Maj Paul von Hacker III, USAF, Ret

congrats and well done Master Instructor Hacker,
and thank you.

And,
to everybody,
this is a world which has been educated out of common sense.
it has become bound by myths and lies.
People make up reasons when they don’t understand the real reasons.
For these reasons the martial arts suffer,
and people circle on the rim
and never experience the real martial arts.
The real martial arts are simple,
and the Master Instructor course is the key that unlocks them.

Again,
congrats to Paul,
and…
Have a great work out!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-karate/

Here’s a Christmas win…

A WIN!

Merry Christmas my friend. I love what you do, and you’ve changed the way I approach the arts that I love. 2018 marks my 40th year as a martial artist, and I believe that what you do is so important to us true believers. Please remember that innovation is always going to be violently resisted initially. What you do is absolutely logical, and it’s impossible for any sane man to argue with logic. Press on with pride brother. You ARE making history and a legacy. Best wishes and thanks.
– Sean

“There is no comfort in the growth zone and no growth in the comfort zone”?Unknown

How to Understand Mastery in the Martial Arts

Newsletter 947

Becoming a Master in the Martial Arts!

You give a guy a hammer,
show him how to build a wall,
let him build walls for a couple of months
and zingo bingo,
the guy is a framer.
He knows how to set down the two by fours,
nail them into a wall,
uses a square like a champ,
pounds those nails in a wack or two,
and he is quick.
He is expert.
One could even say he is a black belt in framing.
Or,
depending on his job,
he might be a black belt in roofing,
or building chimneys,
or whatever.
Expert.
Zowie.

But,
he can’t build a house all by himself.
Not quick and fast
with no mistakes.
But,
he’s got a leg up on everybody else.
A guy who could build a house would be a master.
He is expert in a number of fields.
He’s an expert in framing and flooring and installing sinks
and putting in light switches and…
and everything you might expect to find in a house.

Simply,
he has become expert in a number of fields.
And if he was a good master
he would even know how to get the money
to build the house.
That’s right,
he would contract it out to various experts,
let them do the work,
while he checks up on them every few days.
Isn’t that odd?
To think of a contractor as a master?

And,
yes,
there are a few contractors who build shoddy houses,
they aren’t as expert as they think they are,
but they fool people and get away with it.

So,
that all said,
a fellow who knows one art can be said to be an expert.
He knows Aikido,
he is a black belt in Aikido.
He knows Taekwondo,
he is a black belt in Taekwondo.
And so on.

Here’s the hard part,
he doesn’t know enough different arts,
and so it takes a lifetime to become a master.

Oh, yes,
he’ll make it,
but it’s hit or miss,
he picks up things by listening to what others say,
by reading books,
by stumbling across concepts he might have seen in his own art,
but in which he doesn’t have the art,
or drills and discipline,
to make work.

And here’s something a. lot of guys are going to hate…
MMA, being a bunch of arts put together,
doesn’t make a master.

A master is made by the accumulation
of the various knowledges of the various arts,
MMA is good fighting.
It is not broad knowledge,
but specialized knowledge,
and limited to the rules of the ring.

I’m not knocking MMA,
just saying something that most MMA fighters,
if they are honest,
will readily admit.

But the real point here is not how many fights you have been in,
the real point is how much knowledge you have.
And knowledge is in the various martial disciplines.
If you study karate,
you need to study tai chi and aikido and krav maga and TKD and…
and if you study MMA you need to peruse the various disciplines
from which MMA came,
to find the knowledge behind why you are a good fighter.
Wing Chun, Shaolin, Silat,
all the arts,
they each have parts of the whole,
and they must be studied in order to put
the parts of the whole together
and make one art.

One art out of all the pieces of arts that you know.
All the concepts of all the arts
arranged in order
that they may be understood purely.

That is what a Master knows.
So there are few masters,
for few people take the time to go into all the various disciplines.
Mostly it takes forty or fifty years,
and then the guy dies.
But a few people understand what I am saying,
and a few people understand that matrixing
teaches one not just the various concepts,
but how the concepts fit together.

Here’s a link about some of the people I have taught,
and who have taught me…

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts-instructors/

Have a great work out!
Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts-instructors/

Here’s a win I received a few years ago…

A WIN!

Master Case,
I purchased your Matrix Core Course last October and it’s truly amazing and revolutionary material, it’s taken me months to complete, and it covers a lot of martial arts ground.
Then I purchased the Matrix Master Text and it blew my mind even further out.  It helped me understand the core material even better.
I have never paid so much for a PDF download file in my life, but after opening that eBook, and reading it, I realized how much time and energy you really put into your Matrixing work. Your core course and the master text are worth a lot more than what I paid, you have by far over delivered by redeeming my time spent in the martial arts and saving me all that scratching on my head for the coming years ahead.
I will never see the martial arts the same way again.  After over 20 years in the martial arts studying Judo, Jujitsu, Hapkido, Kenpo, Tang So Do, and Taekwondo, I have learned more in these past 11 months, than I have in my entire martial arts career.

Thanks!
Elmer G

The Secret of Teaching Martial Arts

Newsletter 944

The Higher Martial Art

I had an interesting class the other day,
one of the students is always late,
always lazy,
and wastes his and other student’s time.
So I sat him down,
along with the whole class,
and I chewed him up a little bit.
I said,

five years from now
you’re going to have a job,
a wife,
a kid on the way,
are you going to give people a hard time then?

Blank look back at me.

Then:
Martial Arts are about control.
Fighting is part of it,
but you have to get past fighting
and learn how to control.
Life is nothing but people
and how you control them,
or how you are controlled by them.

He cocks his head quizzically.

I’m the boss here,
can you control me?

He shakes his head no.

So you won’t be able to control your boss
when you get a job.
You won’t be able to move ahead,
you won’t be able to choose what to do,
you won’t be able to work your own hours,
you won’t be able to make the money you want to make.

Now he’s blinking.
I’m starting to make sense to him.

Martial arts is about control.
If you don’t learn control here,
you may not have a chance later.
The boss in five years
doesn’t care about you learning control,
he just wants to get the job done,
and he is going to go with the people
who can best control what they do.

My voice is raised now,
and the class is staring.
There are times when I want them to think,
now is not one of those times.
Now I want them to get it.
Shut up and get it:
the world belongs to those who can control it.

I finished with:
If you’re an idiot now,
if you’re going to waste your time
by being lazy and foolish,
then you’re going to be an idiot in five years.
So I suggest you practice these forms
so you can learn to control your body.
And practice those applications,
so you can learn to control your opponent.
And practice freestyle drills and methods,
so you can control the chaos that life can be.

Now,
the student in question improved slightly.
So I will have to repeat it tomorrow,
maybe in altered form,
maybe in connection with some other dojo lesson.
And I will repeat it again and again.
Because that’s what teaching really is.

Here’s a link on how to translate chaos to control,
force to flow,
the world to your pleasure.

http://monstermartialarts.com/how-to-translate-karate-into-tai-chi-chuan/\

Have a great work out!
Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/how-to-translate-karate-into-tai-chi-chuan/

Following is a great win that shows one thing…you aren’t going to get the answers, you are going to get the questions, the questions that lead you to understanding your own martial art. Do you have the kind of mind that can do this?

A WIN!

Al, the reason I finely decided to order these DVD’s (Five Army Tai Chi Chuan) was that after one of my classes, which I am continuing to teach at the park, I was invited by a fellow name John to learn Tai Chi with him and some of his students. I found the art to be fun, but when the class ended I inquired about the martial application and to my surprise John told me that there where none, that it was only to be used for relaxation.
Bull, I then showed him how I could turn just the few moves that I had just learned into a usable defense (only because I read the Master Instructor manual.) This got me thinking about this art and I know the best place for me to learn it was from you.
Have a great week
Stephen

Clever Little Trick to Master Karate

Newsletter 943

Defeating the Linearity of Karate

I was watching videos
of people doing karate on the internet.
This included demo teams,
old masters,
and whoever,
and I was struck
by wrong they are doing karate,
by how they didn’t really know karate.

The funny thing is
karate is one of the most powerful arts I know,
yet everybody is doing it wrong.
Let me give you one example.

Watch a video on youtube,
watch a demo team for karate.
They are fast, powerful, explosive.
It is not good karate.
Why?
Because their arms and legs move back and forth
in a linear manner,
stopping and starting.
Real karate is liquid,
it does not stop and start.
At the end of every movement there is a circle,
often too small to be easily seen.
this circle avoids the stopping and starting of the muscles.
It takes effort and muscular exertion
to stop and start muscle motion.
When you have a small circle
somewhere in the end of the motion,
which leads into the beginning of the next motion,
you are doing real karate.

Now,
those who don’t understand will argue,
that is okay,
they will remember
and eventually come around.
For those of you who are frowning,
standing up and checking to see
if you have a little loop on the end of a punch or block
(both ends)
the truth is dawning.
Karate is not linear.
It is not a rigid piston effect,
it is a looping,
neverending effect.
And,
what do you get out of it?

The loop helps change one move into the next
the loop saves energy and is more efficient
it is faster
your body becomes more liquid,
more fluid,
you start to develop ‘pulsing power.’
Pulsing power is when you…
push with the legs
turn the hips
throw the punch.
Not exactly together,
but one…two…three,
so fast that the punch becomes one motion,
each action lending power and energy to the next action,
and yet becoming more and more fluid.

Now,
I read of this concept originally
while reading books on Chinese martial arts.
And,
I observed my instructor,
who was quick and whippy,
fluid like a striking snake.
And I read about a more fluid karate in Shotokai
(not shotokan)
which is supposed to be the style
funakoshi handed down his lineage to.

And I thought about it,
and developed it,
and came to realize the truth of it.
So take your time,
practice your forms,
and search for places where you can
add a loop at the end of a technique.
Maybe it is in the motion of the hand,
maybe it’s a turn of the hip,
a sink of the hip,
and flip of the shoulder.
Whatever it is,
you’re now on the path to true karate.

And,
all these guys doing wrong karate?
They are phenomenal,
not to be disrespected,
but it is a simple matter of physics
that reveal them to be expert beginners,
even master beginners,
who haven’t made the transition past beginner,
into the real thing.

When I teach karate to newbies
I usually let them work on the piston effect.
But when they are starting to remember everything,
I shift them to the looping effect.

Now,
I don’t talk about the whiplike effect much,
I instead recommend people do Matrix Karate,
but if you have matrix karate under your belt,
you could look at Temple Karate.
I do more advanced forms there,
and you can probably,
if you have a quick eye,
see how I add the teensiest of loops
to make my karate fluid.

But your eye has to be quick,
because the longer you train,
the smaller your loops become
until no one can see your loops.

Have a great work out!
Al

Matrix Karate
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-karate/

Temple Karate
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/temple-karate/

Following is a great win that shows one thing…you aren’t going to get the answers, you are going to get the questions, the questions that lead you to understanding your own martial art. Do you have the kind of mind that can do this?

A WIN!

I picked up Matrix Karate from you; and I definitely get it.  My area of study is Kajukenbo; and based on watching the Matrix Karate DVD last night, I am reasonably sure that matrixing Kajukenbo would be very straight forward.  Time consuming, yes, difficult no.  I think it would be best to break Kajukenbo into its 7 arts (Karate, Judo, Jiujitsu, Kenpo, Boxing, Kung Fu, and Escrima), and matrix each of those.  My questions are: do you think that is the right approach? Is there a particular order you think these should be taught in? Do you teach each matrix’d art to completion, then move to the next? And, how does sport karate fit in?  And finally; for the traditional forms, would those be one entire section? Or would you recommend splitting them into each sub-section of the art?

How Karate Becomes Every Other Martial Art

Newsletter 939

Translating Karate into Everything

Hey Guys and Gals!
I just wrote the following newsletter,
and I just wanted to say thanks to you guys,
for being martial artists,
and making my path so worthwhile.
Hope you enjoy…

I was a black belt in Karate when I started Aikido.
I always remember the shock on the Aikido black belt’s faces,
I had a question
and I would walk right up
and ask the question.
If you’ve ever been around the classical,
that’s not how you do stuff.
You bow and scrape.
You practice speaking in a subdued manner.
You treat yourself like a humble dope
so they will take pity on you.
But I was a black belt in karate,
I was equal,
be it in another system,
so I would walk up and break the etiquette,
I would just ask.
Funny thing,
they always answered my questions.
I suppose they couldn’t figure out how to say no,
without themselves looking like a doofus.
So one day I’m asking a question,
and this black belt blinks,
and realizes.
‘You’re a black belt.’
Yup.
Then he took me aside,
we traded stuff madly,
really got into the art.
But here’s the interesting thing:
in Karate,
when you get to black belt,
you start figuring out how to use specific forms in freestyle.
Sure.
You’re intuitive,
you start reading minds,
guy thinks about an attack,
you think about a defense from a form,
and they match.
Not like today when people just fight.
Now,
at black belt I wasn’t interested in that.
Did it,
but wasn’t interested.
I was already reading everything,
looking at other arts,
and I wanted to make other arts work.
Of course,
the big problem was that I hadn’t really studied other arts.
I had read about them.
Big problem.
So doing the Aikido class,
I began to realize that I was performing the same body motions,
but going with the opponent
instead of against.
Instead of colliding with an inward block,
if I did a quick step and made the in block go with the attack,
I had aikido.
Zingo Bingo!
Then I looked at Tai Chi,
figured out the concepts,
applied them to Karate motions,
and I was doing Tai Chi.
And,
yes,
it was that simple.
Everything translated if you understood the concept behind the art.
Went through a few Kung Fu systems.
Did weapons,
and so on.
Matrixing was born,
and I wrote a million words
to describe everything
so everybody could understand it.
Do you study one system?
Silly you.
With a few tweaks you could be studying all the martial arts.
Now,
there are a few things to look out for.

First,
most systems these days
have become so muddied
they don’t have specific concepts.

Second,
most systems don’t have the right blend of forms and freestyle,
they end up with two arts…
the art of whatever their forms are
and the art of freestyle.

Third
most systems don’t stick to the path long enough
to become intuitive.
They end up putting boxing into their training,
mixing in MMA so they can advertise,
and so on.
You can recognize these systems
because people describe by using such terms as /muscle memory.’
Muscle memory is what you have until you go intuitive,
then it’s a whole new ballgame.
Then you are in the now.
And that’s a very zen thing.

The thing is,
when you have a system that works,
you can’t go hunting and pecking through other systems,
you have to do your whole system,
then you have to understand the concepts of the other system,
and you have to understand how these concepts work by physics and mechanics.
Then you have to work your butt off.

When I was figuring this stuff out
I was working out several hours a day,
even if I had no partner.
I would do air forms,
pound the bag,
work with weapons,
and write everything I did down.
And,
therein lies the difference
between a martial artist,
and a fellow who practices the martial arts.
We all start out the same,
going to classes,
blindly groping.
The fellow who practices martial arts,
however,
stops.
The martial artist doesn’t stop.
He becomes more and more obsessive,
finding new things to obsess about,
compelled to learn new things,
always dissatisfied with his progress,
always knowing that the truth is right around the corner,
if he could just see…a…little…further.
Anyway,
that’s the path from Karate to Aikido to everything else.
It’s not an easy path,
if you measure it in bruises and hours,
but it is the easiest path if you are obsessed.
Here’s to you,
I hope you’re obsessed.

Have a great work out!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-aikido/

AN AIKIDO WIN!

Here’s a fellow who illustrates what I’ve been saying…

Hi,
Just wanted to take the time to thank you.  Having now watched and read through the Matrix Karate system it is exactly what I was hoping it would be when I originally made the purchase.  I have begun working my way through the material and am enjoying every second of it!  I have since also bought (I’ve been treating myself each pay day) your monkey boxing and within the last few days your Aikido course.  Both I have found instantly applicable, and although I have only watched the Aikido seminar once so far, I have quickly identified that together they are so much more than the sum of their parts!   Within just a few days of the monkey boxing course arriving, I found that I was suddenly able to lock and manipulate to restrain far higher grades than myself in the club I attend, and now have found I have members of all levels, and even my own instructor asking me to just go over techniques so they can see what I did.  Suffice to say that the guy (every club has one) that is like an immovable object was lying face down the very first time I tried a technique you had discussed… and I see no reason why my skills won’t take on a similar bound forward as I absorb the Aikido course.  ?I am sure you hear such stories all the time from people like me (over enthused with what must seem mundane to yourself) but I really felt I ought to say thank you.  One thing I am not sure if other people have found, but I want to mention, I truly appreciate you laying ‘it all’ out for people, by which I mean I appreciate the reward  (in terms of knowledge) coming from hard work and ‘flight time’ rather than an arbitrary period between Dan Gradings no matter how often one trains in that time before the next chunk of knowledge is passed on.  I will continue to follow your courses and let each build on what went before.
One more thanks for the recommendation to read ‘As a man Thinketh’ I really took a lot from it.
Anyhow, I’ll leave you be, and stop pestering you with my ramblings.
Many thanks one last time,
Adam D.

Brutalizing the Martial Arts

Newsletter 936

What’s the Difference Between a Martial Art?

Why did you sign up for the martial arts?
What reason was ticking away in the back of your skull?
If you’re like me it was probably to get tough,
to be strong enough to fight back against the bullies.
And that is the secret of selling the martial arts.

To sell something you have to find a problem,
and offer what you’re selling as the solution.

The problem the martial arts addresses
is the student’s poor opinion of himself,
his desire not to be victim to all the people who bully him.
And this problem/solution has been selling the martial arts
since time was invented.

I remember a book in the fifties/sixties,
‘Super Karate Made Easy.’
And you don’t have to look for it,
it’s here…
http://monstermartialarts.com/free-martial-arts-books/

In this book situations were presented
in which the reader was addressed as being helpless,
but has fortunately studied a mysterious art.
Here’s a sample…

Your opponent tip-toes behind you and grabs your hair. To stop the hair pulling throw both your hands above your head and grab his hand. Follow thru with repeated smashes of the foot to opponent’s shin or down hard on his instep. That will be the last time this ingrate will get into your hair!

Do you see it?
You were a victim,
now you are offering the punishment.
This book sold…MILLIONS.
Wasn’t a very good book,
but it had the formula down,
present the reader as victim,
offer the solution.

When I signed up for Kenpo
I was fodder for the sales guy,
because I had just come through high school,
which means I had been bullied for four years.

In fact,
my parents told me to
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

Then my teachers said to
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

Even the other kids told me
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

I wasn’t being raised…or educated,
I was being prepared for a life of
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

So when I walked into that karate school,
and they offered me a solution,
man…I JUMPED AT IT!

Want to know a bad secret?
If you want to make money in the martial arts,
start up a website,
put a few techniques down on paper,
and surround them with descriptions of mayhem,
and sell them as a book.
And advertise the book by telling people they are weak,
and your ‘system’ are the solution.
Guaranteed.
You are going to get rich.

You don’t think so?
Go back through the internet scams
of the last few decades.

The guy
(who is described in a way that reminds you of you)
walks into a dangerous situation
(a bar, a party, a convention of skinheads)
accidentally offends
(bumps, is shoved into, makes a joke)
a bully
(a biker, a skinhead, a big drunk)
and uses a secret technique
(fight ender, prison elbows)
taught to him by a mysterious person
(monk, nun, spetznatz operative, green beret)
and he will share this system with you
for a price ending in 7.
(37.00, 47,00, etc.)

So why am I telling you this?
Because the other day I came across a website,
it was selling the same old same old,
a new and efficient system,
tossed out the slop,
focused on brutalizing the opponent.

I want you to think about that.
Brutalizing the opponent.
Isn’t that why you started the martial arts?
To stop being brutalized?
And now people are being sold on brutalizing.
They have become the problem.

The truth is that the martial arts have shifted.
They have gone from ‘defend yourself,’
to ‘beat the crap out of somebody.’
We have stopped seeking the solution,
and started seeking the problem.
Weird.

Now,
here’s the truth.
When I walk into a martial arts school,
I meet people who are not competent.
They don’t know how to teach the martial arts,
so they push fighting.
Not the martial arts,
but fighting.

Instead of drilling until one is aware of how a technique works,
the student is taught to fight…fight…fight!

Instead of learning how to control his body,
and thus the body of an opponent,
the student is taught how to brutalize.
Sure,
it’s all in the name of justice and humanity,
but it’s not in the spirit of justice and humanity.

What’s the solution?
Present the truth,
as best you can,
and hope you can penetrate to the human being
before he catches on fire.

The martial arts are not about fighting,
they are about not fighting.
About stopping the bully without beating the crap out of him.

It’s not about hitting the bag so hard you bust it,
it is about investing yourself with awareness.

Here’s the truth:
it’s not about beating some bully up,
it is about beating yourself up,
working out until you are so strong and competent
that the bully doesn’t come near you.
That is the way you create a peaceful world.
Not by pounding it into shape,
but by pounding yourself into awareness.

Here’s a win to encourage you.

Hello sir, I hope this email finds you in good spirits. I just wanted to give you an update on my progress with the Butterfly Pa Kua Chang training. I have kept up the 3 hours a day training, adding in some training elements such a lion holding the ball and the serving tea cups exercises. On the weekends I’ve been training at the parks here in Philadelphia, while my kids run around playing.

As previously mentioned I have a lot of martial experience, but Pa Kua Chang is unlike anything I had ever done in the past. It took me a good couple of months to get used to, but I have a real firm grasp of all of the basics and have even worked on my own double changes, three in total. I am absolutely addicted to it!!!

I can’t thank you enough for putting the course out there for people like me, who have no access to learning it in person here. I’ve even had several people stop me at the parks and ask to follow along with the movements as I walk the circle!

Thank you sir,
Fred

Have a great work out!

Al

Here’s the PKC course

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/butterfly-pa-kua-chang/

Martial Arts Work Outs That Change You!

Newsletter 935

Why Do a Martial Arts Work Out?

Good and HOT day to you!
It’s over a 100 here in so cal,
And PERFECT for working out!

Hey,
Can I get in your face for a moment?
How much do you work out?
The whole purpose of this newsletter
is to encourage the work out.
So how much do you work out?

To me,
A work out is like a prayer.
I work out EVERY day.
Rain or shine,
Hot or cold,
In good health or poor.
Heck,
Because of working out I’m 70,
and feel like a 25 year old.
I think that makes it all pretty important.

When I work out I get in touch with me.
My thoughts are clearer all day,
Bushwah that bugs me
Suddenly recedes,
Becomes unimportant.
Problems become easy.
People who are difficult suddenly become…easy.
So how much do you work out?

Let me tell you something…
When I was working for my black belt
All those years ago,
I didn’t work out as much as I should.
I just worked out at the school,
Thought that was the only place to work out.
Boy,
Was I dumb.
Then,
Over the years,
I became aware of how much martial arts was doing for me.
I began obsessing.
Reading everything,
Studying everything,
Working out until the wee hours.
But,
You know,
I always have this little niggle inside.
I had wasted time.
I had not worked out obsessively back in the beginning.
I had only worked out at the school.
What wasted opportunities.
When I was fresh and full of vim and vigor,
I relaxed.
I wasted.
What a dope.

So that’s the message of this newsletter,
Now and always…

WORK OUT!
Agree with me or not,
Disagree or not,
The fact is that this is a reminder.
Nothing more,
Nothing less.

Here’s a recent win to encourage you.

Al,

I have gone through many of your courses and am currently going through blinding steel and eventually on my way to forty monkeys. I recently went through your book Matrixing Tong Bei. Several things clicked and the martial arts universe opened up after finishing that book.
Respectfully,
Tyler K

Come on,
Guys and gals,
Work out and make the universe open up for you!

Have a great work out!

Al

Here;S the Blinding Steel course, in it you learn how to matrix ALL weapons!
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/3a-blinding-steel-matrixing-weapons/

How Not To Hurt Yourself in the Martial Arts

Newsletter 934

Martial Arts Injuries!

I don’t usually get injured,
And when I do it’s usually something stupid.
I detached a tendon in the fourth finger of my right hand.
Stupid.
And it takes six weeks to grow back.
But,
Every tragedy is an opportunity,
So let me elucidate on that.

First,
When you are injured
You figure out better ways to do things,
You are forced out of the same old same old,
And start to think,
How can I do this technique?
Should I change angles?
Use the other hand in a different way?
And so on.
And,
There is a bump in awareness.
You have to move so that you don’t impact,
But rather match the trajectory
Of whatever is incoming.
So you learn stuff,
And get smarter.
But stupid injuries are still just that…
stupid.

And,
At this point,
Let me offer the injury formula,
If not for your benefit,
Then mine.

Speed plus Ignorance equals Injury.
S + Ig = In

Geez.
You’d think I would have that down,
eh?

Except that it is a caution to go slow enough
to engage your ability to analyze,
And not a guarantee.

Anyway,
That all said,
Let me point out that
‘Chiang Nan’
Is the book that teaches you
how to make karate into Tai Chi.
I’ll be doing a lot of Chiang Nan
For the next six weeks,
And I urge you to look into it.
http://monstermartialarts.com/how-to-translate-karate-into-tai-chi-chuan/
It has a TREMENDOUS amount of knowledge,
And a whole new way of looking at the martial arts.

And,
One other reason I am pushing this book,
I am about to come out with a new one.
So get caught up,
Don’t get left behind.
I’ll let you know about it,
Probably the next newsletter.

Okely Doggone Dokely,
I wave my busted finger at you,
And caution you…
WORK OUT HARD
You never when you’re going to get busted.
(insert a trickle of a tear down my cheek here)

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/how-to-translate-karate-into-tai-chi-chuan/