Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Light up that Joint!
When instructing our students, we simplify(?) their general understanding of an aggressor's anatomical joint's (that can be manipulated to their defensive advantage). We make no (serious?) attempt at making them versed in the (technically) correct anatomical configurations of each and every one of the joints located throughout the entire human body.
That, would be beyond the needs of our student's. Not that it wouldn't prove helpful, just that it isn't necessary. Our student's need only to understand the (physical) basics of "how & why" a joint moves (which can be sufficiently simplified quite easily, LOL).
We have limited their basic (required) understanding to be that there are "14" (major) joint “areas” to be considered when attempting to manipulate an aggressor/uke. These are the wrists, the elbows, the shoulder joints, the hip's, the knee's, the ankle's and the neck.
Though each could be (further) broken-down to their individual components, it's only the most general of their R.O.M. That is of importance for the student to be knowledgeable about.
Being knowledgeable about the R.O.M. Of the individual phalanges might be of (some?) use to a college (med) student, but it isn't for a student learning Life-Protection skills.
Numerous systems (appear to) go out of their way having their student's learn “finger pressure” applications. Yes, they are uncomfortable... but they will never stop an emotionally enraged aggressor.
For the most part, RyuTe® doesn't really “do” the finger-pressure applications. We focus (more so) on the major anatomical joints (that are used during the majority of motions performed by the limbs).
The most common type of anatomical “joint”, is the flat-hinge (type). This is most readily exemplified by the elbow, the knee and the wrist. Though each allows for some limited rotational capabilities, they primarily allow for only 2-directional motion.
The wrist is most commonly miss-identified as possessing more rotational capabilities (than it actually has). It is the forearm that allows the wrist/hand and forearm to rotate (not the wrist joint itself). This rotational capability is allowed through the connections made at the elbow (by the Radial & Ulna bones in the forearm).
More importantly, it needs to be recognized that the student should be knowledgeable about each anatomical joint's R.O.M. Until the student is educated over this subject, their ability to utilize the instructed joint manipulations will be somewhat limited.
The shoulder, and the hip-joint, are both limited (range) Ball and Socket joints. The knee's are similar (in operation) to the elbow joints. The ankle's are unique, in that though they operate similar to the wrists, they have a wide range of lateral/rotational motion (through their connection at the knee). Though their flexion and extension capabilities are far more restrictive (than the wrist's are).
Though technically the whole spine is a flexible “joint”, I only identify the waist as possessing any (important?) notable R.O.M. characteristics (that could effect any motion abilities/limitations on the part of an uke's response to a technique's application).
Usually, it will be the Tuite techniques that a student will initially make note of the/any effects made upon these joints (when applying a technique).
As the student's training progresses, the inclusion of atemi and kyusho strikes will be utilized to effect the abilities of those muscles and of the nerves that control the capabilities of the limbs to function. Much of that controlling (ability) of motion, is dependent upon the student's understanding/familiarity of the actual motion capabilities of those joints.
The application of these (types of) strikes will be dependent upon what type of reaction it is that the tori is desiring to create. Though it is commonly stated, that someone “deadened” an opponent's arm, that isn't (really) an accurate assessment of the damage (if any) done to the opponent's arm.
When attempting to create a reaction (to occur) from a joint manipulation, it needs to be determined what would cause that reaction to occur naturally (via internal motivation, or external stimulation).
The ability to reproduce that stimuli (externally) is what 90% of any martial arts technique's are designed to achieve (be it a strike, or a limb manipulation).
Numerous systems/schools teach (their versions of) the tuite applications as a separate, if not sub-art . This is an incorrect methodology. Tuite should (always) be taught as an integral piece of the entire (RyuTe®) system.
Having (even) only a basic understanding of the muscles (and their tendon's) that control the limb's position and motion, will allow the student to target those locations directly.
By understanding how the various muscles/tendons and nerves work in conjunction, a student can specifically target those area's of an aggressor's anatomy. This will cause/create the desired reaction to the relevant limb, and will assist in the tori's defense.
You can often hear (during a class) that someone or something (an action or strike) has “lit-up” a particular nerve/area. This refers to our concept of activating a nerve/muscle. Until either (if not both) of those are activated, performing a (debilitating) strike is far more difficult.
The ability to do that, is learned from knowing how and why the individual joints function, and knowing what causes them to operate.