Thursday, April 2, 2015

Additional Guidelines

  In addition to the general guidelines, there are additionally some specific preferences that we also attempt to adhere to. These were Regularly voiced by Taika, and have since become the cornerstones of his protective teachings.

"Size or Strength is not Relevant to a Technique's Effectiveness"
"Utilize 3 Defensive Motions at Once"
"Avoid Moving directly to the Rear"
"Hand Motions Work Best, Above the Waist," (and)
"Leg Motions Work Best, Below the waist."
"Always Square Your Body, Towards Your Opponent"
"Learn Your Own Weaknesses, In Order to Know Your Enemy's"

 Students are initially taught to “pre” determine the defensive motion that they will utilize when they are confronted by an aggressor. That motion can be orientated towards a submissive outcome, or a physically damaging outcome. One's initial priority is to protect themselves from receiving any (serious) injury. Once that is accomplished, the students emphasis should be upon the neutralization of the aggressor.
 This can come in the form of a physical inability to continue their own aggression, or a mental change of attitude/intent. The preferred neutralization would be the attitude change/reassessment. Unfortunately this is usually achieved only following a physical demonstration of one's defensive capability.
With that in mind, we practice the demonstrated technique's with the previously listed guidelines being applied to them.

Size or Strength is not Relevant to a Technique's Effectiveness
 With this in mind, it will force the student to study and understand each techniques strength's and weaknesses. When an opponent is (obviously) using strength to deliver their attack, the student should study/understand the inherent weaknesses to that attacking method and counter by applying their own defensive strikes/manipulations to those weaknesses.

Utilize 3 Defensive Motions at Once
 This is commonly misinterpreted to mean “applied” at the same time. Though possible, to do so, that is more often than not impractical to physically perform (or plan on). It's fairly simple to utilize “2” motions at once (with practice), then utilize an immediate follow-up. This is also (easily) performed by initially using a single (limb) technique, followed by 2 additional applications (1 hand/arm, 1foot). Either instance will provide the “3 motions” required.
 The logic Oyata used for this, was that anyone can stop/prevent a single motion, two is more difficult and three are extremely difficult to prevent.

Avoid Moving directly to the Rear
 Although this should be obvious, it isn't (to many people). It's natural to move away from a physical threat, unfortunately it's common to move directly away (rearward) from that threat.  Movement to one's rearward side, is the slowest direction that one is able to move towards (this is clearly illustrated in class).
 By moving at an angle (to either side) rearward, is more effective (being out of line with the standard aggressive technique) than moving directly rearward, and is just, if not faster, than moving directly rearward.

Hand Motions Work Best, Above the Waist
Leg Motions Work Best, Below the waist
 Another one that would seem to be obvious, yet isn't. As with anything, it requires training/practice to not attempt to use one's hand's to deflect/strike an opponent's legs (when an aggressor is using them to attempt a strike upon you, using their own). (strangely?) the same is true with some hand/arm motions. I've witnessed instructor's attempting to teach students to use their leg's to “kick” an aggressor's hands/arm's (as a “defensive tactic”?).  Aside from being impractical, inefficient and ineffective it also requires too much training (even if it could be forced) to be effective.

Always Square Your Body, Towards Your Opponent
 This is both a tactical and a strategic mandate. Tactically, by remaining square (to the opponent), you display no side preference's (Left or Right). You also provide the most efficient way to deliver force (via strikes) using either arm. Strategically, this allows the defender to utilize either arm without displaying your preference to an aggressor.

Learn Your Own Weaknesses, In Order to Know Your Enemy's
 Human bodies are all similar. There may be aesthetic differences, but the anatomy remains similar (enough) between any/all humans to be considered “common”. If one's own body has a location that is sensitive (to pressure/impact), the odds are good that the same location is susceptible on other person's as well. The “rule” being that “If it hurts upon you, it will likely hurt on an aggressor”

 Any of these could be expounded upon in greater detail (and I have done so with most of them on this blog). More importantly, a student should recognize that each are an important facet to the implementation of what is being shown to them. Each of them represent potential technique failures (that could have been avoided), and should have been addressed in the students training sessions. 
 Though most appear to be (little more than) common sense, they each illustrate concepts that should be closely examined. 

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