Going Backwards in the Martial Arts
Have you ever thought about
the actual process involved in fighting?
Most people think it is hit the other guy quicker,
but that is so inadequate
so far from the truth.
You stand and face Bozo Bob.
Bozo Bob has a thought:
you have to pick up the thought,
see the technique he is going to use
you have to reverse the thought
understand the technique from your viewpoint
because you saw it from his viewpoint.
It is reversed from your viewpoint.
You need to reverse it in your mind.
You need to reverse it
so you don’t create a defense that is backwards.
you have to create the defense…and do it.
that is the simplicity.
More to it
but that is the simple truth.
So how do you reverse
the thought of his attack
so you don’t make a backwards defense?
In classical karate,
and other arts with forms,
we do the forms.
We practice controlling the bodies,
we practice the defenses for the moves
until everything is intuitive.
Think back to when you first began,
most people go through this,
you went through what I call
Backwarditis is when you do things backwards.
The teacher says right,
the students does left.
The teacher says step backward,
the student steps forward.
The teacher says do the technique on the right side
the student does it on the left side.
This is backwarditis.
Teachers everywhere experience it
and keep going,
and the student eventually gets over it.
But nobody knows why the student does everything backwards.
Now you know.
The student looks at the attack
and it is backward in his mind
because he is observing somebody else do it,
so he makes a backward defense.
he gets over it,
he finally absorbs the data
and begins moving correctly.
Knowing this should help you
when you construct self defenses,
it will help you get over trace backwarditis
and learn new things quicker.
It will help you make the bridge to intuitivity.
here’s a couple of interesting things.
Arts where the student doesn’t experience backwarditis
are lacking something.
Arts which don’t have forms
are missing the step for getting rid of backwarditis.
MMA doesn’t have forms,
any experiences of backwarditis
are quick and fleeting.
The bodies are intertwined,
they are positioned
so that backwarditis doesn’t happen.
to be an art there should be backwarditis.
It is a step of evolution that is necessary
lest the student doesn’t experience proper growth,
he doesn’t go through the stages of learning
that are in the martial arts.
Don’t get me wrong,
I am not bashing MMA,
I am just describing the effects of theory
and the teaching method
and what to look for in a student.
there are things in MMA
that other arts don’t have.
But we are just looking at the teaching/learning method here.
there are several ‘cures’
things to help the student make the shift
to thinking backwards in his head intuitively
when doing basics at the beginning of class
do them facing the same way as the class.
doing them facing the class.
see who has got the wrong foot forward,
correct him gently.
And keep going back and forth
every few exercises,
facing the students
then facing away from the students.
This is pretty easy and good to do.
make sure they practice their techniques on both sides,
have them perform their forms on both sides,
and even have them do the forms backward.
And backwards on both sides.
The students will get over backwarditis
their minds will be quick and agile,
will duplicate what an attack is correctly,
and build a defense that is not backwards.
If you want to know something fascinating things about forms
how they are constructed,
and even construct some yourselves,
I recommend the
‘Create Your Own Art’ course
Do be warned,
the videos are poor quality.
You can still see them,
but the quality of video recorders
when I filmed this course
was REALLY caveman.
the material is spectacular,
and the Buddha Crane book
is even bundled in,
as an example of how to create an art.
There is also a progression of art through Pa Kua Chang
that is simply fascinating.
Really good stuff!
Have a great work out!
Hello Mr. Case. I recently purchased the Create Your Own Art course from you. As I have told you in the past I studied Hsing-i quan. Lately I have been having lots of trouble in my practice. At one time I had what I called the Hsing -i “kernal of power” but as of recently I have been unable to do it correctly. The power was bleeding off somewhere in the transitions between stances. I looked at your book Buddha Crane Karate book and I noticed that you have the foot in an elevated position much like the Seven Star stance of Northern Mantis before the step and strike. Well on a hunch I jumped up and ran in the other room and tried it in the Pi quan form and presto! All the power was back.
Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.