Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Your Special Martial Art Technique

In the world of martial arts one of the beauties about it is that there are never a finite number of techniques that one can learn. There are techniques, variations, counters, set ups, counters to counters etc.

However is it a good idea to try and learn every technique possible, or better to pick a handful which you are comfortable with and concentrate on them. Will trying to learn every single technique be a bad thing in the long run?

I remember once attending a Judo tournament, where one fighter kept throwing his opponents with the same drop shoulder throw. He used the same set up, the same throw and the same hold down once on the ground if he had not won the match with the throw. He did this every time and surely as I did, everyone noticed this, even his opponents. So why did he still win with it, especially when his opponents knew what was coming.

After quizzing him about it later on in the changing room, he said that he thought it was better to not know lots of throws, but to pick one, and practice it over and over again. By doing this for many years he said that he was able to use it whenever he wanted, and that whatever his opponents came at him with, he had a way in which it could be used.

This was one of them conversations that then stuck in my mind and probably will for ever. It helped me find my own favorite throw (tokui waza). That one technique which can be called upon whenever needed to “get you out of trouble”.

Weather you are a Judoka, a Jiu Jitsu fighter or come from a striking background, there will be one technique or combination which will seem like it was made for you. After a few years of training and sparring you should eventually find it. You will know which it is because not only will it be effective, but it will seem to come very naturally to you.

Some good advice is, when you do find this technique, drill it. Again and again and again for years. Do not disregard other techniques though. Practice them also for two reasons. Firstly, so you become a well rounded fighter, but more importantly, so you can learn how to integrate and combine your favorite, special technique with them.

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Neal Martin said...

I'm glad you made those points. I have come to realise that it can be detrimental to know too many techniques, especially when it comes to self defense. You end up with technique logjam because you don't know which technique to use.

For self defense my technique is the right hook, used as a pre-emptive strike. I drill that one a lot, building up the power and getting it right.

I think most martial artists would be far more effective if they only mastered a handful of techniques. One mastered technique can be devastating, as your judo guy proved. Good post.

MARKS said...

NEAL MARTIN - Completly correct in my opinion.

TheMartialArtsReporter said...

Totally agree with you guys.
Many tournaments ago (I know point-fighting is not necessarily self-defense, nevertheless) I met a lot guys who could/would only execute a reverse punch and consistently counter-attack and "shoot" opponents out of the sky.
Amazingly effective and very efficient.
Even worked for me. But like I said, many tournaments ago. Hahaha.
I guess that's how they/we would respond or at least similarly respond in a self-defense situation. I believe Benny The Jet Urquidez said, "The way you train is the way you fight".
Stay safe.

MARKS said...

THEMARTIALARTSREPORTER - Thanks for the cooment and I would just like to say although point karate fighting is not necessarily self defence it as you say, sometimes training it, does provide some great benefits that can be used for self defence.

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