Sunday, September 9, 2012

Practice, Is How and Why it Will Work

  I'm usually working on what/how I want to teach to my students, but additionally, I've been focusing on how I want to improve my own techniques as well. That has led me to providing and improving techniques that are ambidextrous as well as simplistic to perform.
  Using principles that were ingrained from Training in Taika's methodology's, my own research is pursuing further development of the single motion responses that I've been teaching to my student's.
  I've attempted to avoid any wasted motion in that development, which in turn has required the development of specific training methods for those motions.
  Those methods have been practiced by students through the use of selective use of protective equipment, and full-speed defensive (and aggressive) motions being used during that practice.
  For the sake of safety, they obviously have to be restricted to singular (individual) responsive portions (of the practiced technique) being performed at a time. If/when practiced at full-speed, the responses being done all at once, would prove to be too (unjustifiably) hazardous for the uke.
  What we do is have the students practice the most common methods of performing an assault, using the taught single motion responses. These responses are always performed in one of these same manners, regardless of which one is utilized.
  These begin by using the most common methods of Right-handed attacks (Uppercut, Stomach Punch, Straight Face punch, Shoulder-Cocked Punch and Hook-Punch). After working with these, the uke will then practice using the same motions with their Left Hand/Arm.
  In all of the practiced attacking methods, the Tori will respond with the same defensive motion. Students may attempt to focus their attention upon (only) one of their limb's motions. The Tori's entire bodies motions must be performed during each (different) attack method that's attempted (whether the portion being practiced actually requires that limb's action or not).
  The idea behind practicing these motions is to additionally ingrain all of the (actual) motions being performed (in addition to working on the specific individual motion) that pertains to the attack method being utilized.
  What I've found (and have to watch students, in order to avoid) is that students can tend to concentrate on only the particular limb/motion that deals with the specific motion being practiced (at the time). The concern, is that by focusing on only that motion, the practice can become detrimental to the development of the entire (body's) motion's and physical actions (the student will attempt to guess at which particular motion/method will be utilized by the aggressor).
  It is avoiding this problem that I devote the majority of my time to (as an instructor). There are numerous minor (yet important) motions involved that can only be practiced (and confirmed) through the segmented practice of the defensive motions.
  When combined with Full-speed and contact, and technique practice (with protective gear), a student can gain a more realistic perception of the technique's actual application. Though the uke's responses will be less dramatic (because of the protective gear), they will be closer than when only practicing at limited power/speed/contact levels. 
  Many methodology's push “sparring” as supposedly providing this type of practice. I can (easily) discount this as being false (or at the very least, misleading). Sparring, (as I commonly see it being performed) regardless of how it's being presented, is basically based around numerous false premisses. If there is any recording of a score, then any productive purpose of the exercise is nullified.
  The only (truly useful) purpose of sparring, is practice of the application of (learned or developing) technique. The whole business of recording scores is a competition (perversion/creation) mentality if not introduced, then propagated by Western influence.
  As I've previously described, when this manner of technique application practice is used as a training and research method, as opposed to being only an ego builder (or confidence destroyer) if not becoming some manner of a macho competitive game, the participants can actually gain some applicable knowledge. 
 The difference between the two is really, do you want to try to prove something, or learn something?


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