Tag Archives: getting faster

Getting Rid of Reaction Time

Getting Rid of Reaction Time

I had the most interesting letter the other day,
the fellow described his problem like this…

‘When I freestyle
these young guys dart in and punch,
then get out before I can get them.’

who among you hasn’t encountered this?
And it points up to a truth of the martial arts.

The purpose of the martial arts
is to deliver a force or flow
without receiving a force or flow.

In other words,
dart in and hit,
then get the heck out of Dodge
before you get hit.

what is the cure?

I know,
a lot of people will say,
‘train harder!’
And they are right,
but there is something else you can do,
that will make your training more efficient
and get you there faster.

Consider what time is.
I think I mentioned this a newsletter or two ago,


time is used to measure distance,
or how fast you can go from point A to point B.

So these guys who are darting in and hitting
have ‘faster distance.’

I know.
It’s weird,
but here is the secret.
When people launch strikes,
they punch to where the person is,
and that is a HUGE mistake.
They should be punching where the person will be.

Think about it,
if you punch to where he is,
by the time your fist
travels from point A to point B,
the opponent has moved from point B to point C.
Your fist whistles through the space
where the fellow was.
And he hits you,
darts out,
He gets the point
and you get the frustration.

let’s look at this problem a little.

The problem is not that he’s slow,
or that he needs oodles of training,
it is that he is punching to
where the fellow is when he gets hit by him,
and by the time his punch gets there
the guy is gone.

This is called reaction time.

And the secret of the martial arts is that you must train
until you don’t have it.
You move when he moves,
not after he moves,
and that means not to where he was
when he punched you.

I know,
it seems complex.
But if you think about it for a while
it turns really simple.

So here is what this fellow should be doing,
anticipate where his attacker is going to be
and punch there.

what a wonderful world.

What it means,
the function here,
is that you punch when the guy is moving forward.
Not when he sinks his weight and punches,
and certainly not when he is darting out.

this is incredibly simple,
but it hinges on something that nobody does.
Nobody actually looks at what they are doing.

They get in the game,
they build reaction time,
and they don’t lose reaction time

Watch some people freestyle.
Study them, and see if you can tell
when they are going to strike.
Do they bounce a certain way to set up?
Do they dip their shoulders?
Do they sink their weight?
Do they shift the focus of their eyes?

There are a THOUSAND tells (hints, clues)
as to when a fellow is going to move.

So if you take the time to LOOK at somebody,
and learn what the ‘tells’ are,
then you can punch when they move in,
and they will,
at best,
run into your fist.
At worst,
they will become gunshy.
they are darting in because they don’t want to get hit,
which is to say they are scared of getting hit.
On some level,
they are scared,
and you attacking without waiting
is going to rock their boat.

a last word on this…
watch a boxing match,
or an MMA match where the opponents are into punching.
Study the moments
before the knock out comes.
and you will see the guy who is going to lose
get tired,
or in some manner…
stop looking.

That’s the proof, right there.

where did I get this idea?
From freestyling for over 50 years,
and I wrote a matrix for timing,
which is a matrix for distance,
in Matrix Kung Fu.

But the course is not about time and distance,
it is about jointlocks and takedowns and such.
But when I put these things together
I was faced with the problem of developing entries,
and that’s what started me on the path
of figuring out what to do
with the simple equation…
time is distance.

here’s the obligatory link…


have yourself a great work out!

And don’t forget to check out the interview

I’m always pushing my novels,
did you know I write other stuff?
If you want to know the truth about government,
you will find some startling matrixing going on in