Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Bad Teaching

  The failure of a Tuite application can occur because of numerous reasons. The most common reason is from miss-application. The ability to apply this type of technique requires a good deal of practice to utilize it correctly. The most common “remedy” (for most systems) is the inclusion of a strike. This doesn't fix the Tuite technique, but it provides time to (either) correct the application, or change to one that would then work.

  Unfortunately for many students, the inclusion of a strike has (or creates the appearance of) become the only way that they can use the Tuite (like) applications that they have been taught. Most often this is because they aren't aware of what (exactly) it is that they are doing incorrectly with the (Tuite) application.

  Numerous systems have delegated the role of Tuite applications to a third or even fourth grade/level (priority?) of technique usage/application. This is usually because the systems priority, is how/when to utilize the instructed “strikes”.The majority of this (IMO) is the general belief that a “martial”art is a (yet another) method of “striking” an aggressor. The majority of time spent in training, is in relation to learning how to strike an aggressor. 
 This obviously is a part of learning how to defend one's self, but depending on how one trains this (striking) is only a small part of that (or any) defensive method.

  Being the most dramatic, and the fact that it is the easiest for (new) students to understand, it is what most students spent the most time working on. Most any (new) student knows some way to “hit” someone. It (usually) isn't the most efficient, but they are able to deliver some manner of a punch. This means the instructor only has to “modify” the manor that the student is presently using (to reflect the manor that the system prefers a strike to be delivered). The ability to apply a Tuite technique requires a great deal more practice. The motions are not commonly as natural as student's expect(?) them to be.

  The manor that many systems teach (their) Tuite (types of) techniques varies. The most common is that they are practiced quickly, and applied with force. In (actual) use, that would be fine, but for the purpose of practice it is counter-productive. Class-time practice is intended to learn and understand how and why those applications work. Just as with practicing a kata, Oyata would commonly tell us to slow down (when practicing Tuite applications).

  I believe much of the confusion came about because Oyata would demonstrate the techniques (for us) quickly (so that we would see what it would look like when utilized). This is not how he intended us to practice them (and clearly said so every time we were working on them). You don't get into a car (when first learning how to drive) and “floor” the accelerator until you arrive at your destination.

  Students tend to view a Tuite application as a whole. Just as when studying/practicing a kata, you break the technique down into individual pieces. Every Tuite application has a set-up stage, an engagement stage and an application stage. If/When these three stages are completed (correctly) the student can then apply a variety of Follow-up applications (dependent upon the situation). Although it is possible to blur (or even screw-up) individual sections of an application (and still have it “work”). Until those sections are successfully completed, the control and/or neutralization of the uke cannot be secured.

  I've read numerous articles from “instructors” that proclaim that without striking (the uke) in conjunction with a (any) Tuite application, it will likely fail. Aside from being a very pessimistic view, it excuses the premiss that the student/tori failed to initially apply the Tuite application correctly.

  It's equally popular for instructor's (when a technique repeatedly fails) to not accept that “they” applied the technique incorrectly. It's more common for them to blame the uke (?) and they will make the claim that the uke, is an “anomaly”. I've had numerous students (and others) who have made this “claim” (to me), stating that Tuite doesn't work on them. After eliminating the unrealistic scenarios (that would never occur, or that wouldn't require a defensive response anyhow), I would ask to see their “anomaly” in response to me applying the technique (and BTW, I do so slowly, I have no desire to cause them injury). I have never had an application fail to function as expected. 
 There have been situations where those applications were (slightly) modified (which isn't unusual for any technique), but I have always elicited the response I desired. I have also (always) applied the technique in a slow, controlled manor (again, it was not my desire to cause injury). If they had actually been an “anomaly”, it would of made no difference what speed I applied the technique. Tuite techniques (at least Oyata's) are not dependent upon speed (or power) for their successful application.

  When I see these “seminar master's” (literally) slamming their students to the ground, I am appalled (as an instructor). This is not “instruction”, it is (only) abuse and/or for feeding the Ego of the instructor.

  Many (if not most) schools that teach some manner of Tuite (whether Oyata's or not) have their students practice those applications quickly (and even emphasize the need for that speed). When doing so, this reduces the amount of time that can be devoted to that study. It additionally ignores the student's understanding of the individual pieces of the techniques being practiced.
 That which you don't understand, is inclined to fail.

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