A question open for debate....

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A question open for debate....

Post  Monty Sneddon on Thu Aug 31, 2006 5:31 am

One for the experts.

Hi guys.

Firstly Iím not trying to start a huge argument with this post, though people will have strong opinions on the subject, which is coolÖ Thatís why I thought Iíd post it, to get those opinions.. Surprised I feel itís always good to re-examine something and see it for what itís worth..

OK, with that said onto the question:

Why is boxing so highly regarded as a component part of a self-defence program?

Iíve did a bit of boxing in the past and I use to spar with a 17 stone heavy weight, which was funny for him, but crap for me!! Very Happy Now, he also worked the doors for 12 years and during that time broke his hand on more than one occasion.. Is it really acceptable to train something which in actual fact could lead to an injury through its use? Iím not having a dig at boxing by the way, as boxers are some of the fittest sports people I know, Iím just trying to figure out why it sits in such a pre-eminent position in the self defence world.

Letís look at boxing as it is today..

Striking:

If we think about what boxing is today, what conclusions can we draw. Thereís no denying that boxers can hit hard, but do they now perhaps hit too hard for bare hand striking? A whole method of striking seems to have developed which takes the glove and wrapping of the hand into account. If we look back to when gloves, or mufflers as they were then know, we see that they were only used in training to protect the hands. When a real bout took place no gloves were used. Also, it appears that hooking, swinging and upper cutting only came into play after the adoption of gloves. This would seem to be due to the fact that you could now get more momentum behind the shot, hence more power, without the risk of shattering your hand. Prior to gloves most old style shots were of a linear nature and were thrown from much further away. Since we donít use gloves on the street, are we perhaps setting ourselves up for a fall here?

There is the argument that the body mechanics from boxing could be used in an open hand shot, but would it not be better to learn how to throw and open hand shot without learning how to box as it were.. Iíve seen some strikes on DVDís recently, which are from amateur boxing and they look ropey to be honest.. Great for scoring points, but not much good for anything else in my opinion..

Footwork:

Now, boxing has footwork, but itís footwork which has developed for moving round a square ring, which is devoid of any obstacles whatsoever and also uses a sprung type floor. When you learn boxing footwork youíre learning to shuffle forward, backwards, side to side etc.. You also learn to close off the ring. Is this really what you should be learning when it comes to protecting yourself? How often do you envisage yourself shuffling forward towards your attacker.. More often than not heíll be charging at you trying to batter your head off or youíll be going for him trying to knock his head off.. Boxing footwork is good for boxing as far as I can see but doesnít seem to have any direct application to defending yourself on the street..

Evasion:

Looking at the bobbing and weaving of boxing, again I donít think youíre really going to get a chance to slip a punch you donít know is coming and appears out of the blue. Lets be honest, if I walked up to someone and went for them totally unawares I donít think Iíd be seeing much bobbing and weaving going onÖMore likely they'd be throwing their hands up to protect their head in the classic flinch type respone.

Defence:

A lot of boxers use the gloves as a means of absorbing blows, like small shields around the hands. We can see this when boxers tuck and cover, letting the gloves absorb some of the blows coming in. In fact Ali was a perfect example of this in Rumble in the Jungle. Eight rounds of punishment.. I donít think that would have happened had old George been wailing away with bare knuckles.. One of them would have given out long before then I think. Itís a totally different kettle of fish when a bare fist is slamming into your bare arms or hands as you try to use them to cover your head. Thereís a good chance youíll be waking up wondering what just happened, or as we say round my way, waking up dead!! The defensive tactics of modern boxing have derived from the rules and gloves that go with it.. Wearing gloves also makes getting through with linear shots a lot harder, so this works to the defenderís advantage as they then take the gloved shots to the elbows, forearms and biceps..

Itís a Combat Sport:

If weíre looking to learn self protection, why should we try to adapt something that is a sport? Does it not make more sense to look at the problem at hand and design something more suitable for the job.. If I need a screw driver for the job I donít say, hmmmmm, better adapt that hammer to get the job done.. Iím wondering if weíre being trapped in a tradition to an extent and canít see the woods for the trees. Just because this is the route that has been taken before, is it the route we should always take?

As I said at the start of the post Iím not trying to start an argument, just a good old-fashioned debate, which may get heated at points, but hopefully never degenerate into a mud slinging matchÖ. Very Happy
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Buster on Thu Aug 31, 2006 6:07 am

Im not an expert and i do agree with a lot of your post.

I don't know if you have seen the other post i put up, i have an oppurtunity to train with a pro boxer, i asked Mick about this at the seminar, he used the analogy of a line, that line for me is reality training if i was to get right into boxing it would take me way of the line but if i used it to gain the skills that i need and adapted it to suit me i could bring it back into the line easier (Mick said this a lot better than me!)

Its a toughie yes boxing is sport but how many sports out there teach you to hit that hard against opponets that are hittting back, i believer it has a lot fo great atributes but also bad ones, point scoring jabs are probaly not going to cut it in the street.

For me the reason i want ot learn it properly is to learn to hit hard, the problem being to do this requires boxers stance on the street square on can i do this as well?? im not sure i will have to see.

I would be intetrsred to hear what the rest of the members have to say.

BUSTER Very Happy
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Monty Sneddon on Thu Aug 31, 2006 6:53 am

Cheers or that reply mate...

It is a difficult question.. As I said, I did boxing for a while and I really enjoyed it, but the more I did it the more it took me away from my objective, which, like yourself, was reality oriented training..

I'm also looking forward to hearing eveyones opinions.. Very Happy
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  easypea on Thu Aug 31, 2006 6:58 am

When you look at all the skills and techniques learnt in Boxing and try to apply them directly into a Real Self-Protection situation, of course you are going to find a whole host of flaws.

I reckon I do do the same to pretty much every art out there - in one form or another.

However, if you are looking for an art/system that has skills which can be easily adapted and made very effective in a self-protection situation, Boxing has to be up there with the best of them.

I've had many years working the door, and seen plenty of action. And let me tell you - if it wasn't for the speed, power, accuracy, fitness, ability to take a punch, will to carry on, and range of punching techniques that Boxing has given me, I would absolutely not be hear to type this now.

Sure, I've had to modify an awful lot of the techniques, punching from no-guard, single shots as well as big combinations, changes to the techniques not normally taught in say ABA schools.

But if you want to be successful outside - the first weapon in my artillery would be a big heavy accurate punch - everytime.
And if you want to learn to Punch - no-one does it better than a Boxer.


If you want to talk about the benefits of grappling for real-situations, I can do that too - but first and foremost - punching is #1

As for the use of gloves - Gloves were introduced to protect the opponent as much as the hand.
If my hand breaks when I hit someone - then who cares. How often am I expecting to be hitting people - personally as infrequently as possible.
I don't care if my hand breaks - so longs as it does the same to the assailants jaw.
And just because my hand breaks - doesn't mean I'm not going to be able to carry on punching should he need a few more persuasive digs in the head - it's only a bit of pain and you won't feel that till tomorrow.

That's kind of like saying - how good is grappling if everytime I grapple I wreck another perfectly good pair of trousers.

I grappled with a guy one night and had to base out and bridge with my head to stop him throwing me.
That's all very well in the gym, but on a tarmac carpark - it tends to rip your head open a little.
That doesn't mean it didn't do the job effectively - nor will it stop me from doing the same again should I ever have to.

I was going to keep this short - sorry

All arts have to be modified - I don't care what it is you train - it will still need to be modified and can never be trained with 100% reality

Boxing is definitely up there with the best of them - but I agree it's not a complete system and it's not a self-protection system, but it gives you great hands and that's good enough for me.

Be Safe
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Monty Sneddon on Thu Aug 31, 2006 7:16 am

Hi easypea.

Thanks for your comments..

Got to agree with you impact is the number 1 option, eveytime..

I can't agree with you regarding breaking your hand, but that's OK, everyone has an opinion based on their beliefs and their experiences and that cool, makes the world more colourful!! Very Happy

I think what I'm trying to say is why don't we practice and art that is specifically designed for the reality of combat as it applies today? Everyone who trains various arts and then adapts them, don't you think that this is inefficient as it were? It's as if we're acceptign what we've got and not evolving as it were... Boxing evolved, as did Judo and many other arts to become sports, so I'm wondering why we're reverse engineering them as it were instead of looking at the reality of the situation now and designing something to deal with it....
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Dave Turton on Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:56 am

without (once again) stirring things up and getting bollocked (Nowt new there).. I dont like BOXING per se for the street but I do like BOXING PUNCHES THAT HAVE BEEN ADAPTED FOR THE STREET

Dave Turton
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Joshu's Dog on Thu Aug 31, 2006 9:23 am

Why boxing is good, practical fight training:

1. only 4 weapons - jab, cross, hook, uppercut.

2. Lots and lots of time drilling those 4 techniques - you get good at them (rather than having 200 techniques you kinda sorta know)

3. People trying to hit you, hard. Much sooner in your training than any other sport or TMA that I've done. I learned more my first minute in the ring about "keep your hands up" than in 2 years of a TMA instructor shouting it at me.

I think that's the big three - limited number of effective techniques, well drilled, plus getting used to really hitting (and getting desensitized to being hit by) people.
Add in the conditioning and it's not a bad package.

It's not the be all and end all, but if I had someone about to go to school in a rough place, and a choice between a boxing gym and a TKD kwon (at least the ones around here) to send him to, I'd send him to the ring.

JK
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Monty Sneddon on Thu Aug 31, 2006 9:25 am

Hi Dave.

Just wondering what boxing punches you would use? I know with things like hooks you can deliver lots of power but you can end up doing more damage to yourself if they miss and hit the top of the head for example..

I also think that your answer is getting at the point I'm trying to make and that's why do we have to adapt something? Wouldn't it be better to design strikes especially for the street as it were.. Are we becoming mired in traditon as it were? Could it be a case of not seeing the wood for the trees so to speak?

Thanks for your comments..... Very Happy
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Joshu's Dog on Thu Aug 31, 2006 9:27 am

I think what I'm trying to say is why don't we practice and art that is specifically designed for the reality of combat as it applies today?

Monty, that's not an option for many people.
If I lived in Yorkshire I'd train with Dave.
If I lived in Liverpool I'd train with Den, if in Wales I'd train with Mick.
If I lived in North Carolina I'd train with Nick.

Where I live there is nobody teaching RBSD.
So I train in other styles that I can adapt, and read and learn in person when I can about how to adapt them and how to improve.

JK
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  edbaker on Thu Aug 31, 2006 9:29 am

Monty - a thought provoking and well constructed question mate, I can see exactly where you're coming from, but there are some important benefits of boxing that are directly comparable to the street.

I'll keep it short:

hitting hard, conditioning, footwork IS good because you also deal with crazy charging windmills in boxing too, (or you should do at the least) combinations - you have the muscle memory to throw fluid shots around the guard making you capable of overwhelming someone who tries to block your shots with hands up, mental durability, fear control.

you can also use a diagonal stance from the fence.

however, all good "contact-heavy" systems like thai, boxing, judo, wrestling etc will teach you fundamental things like power generation, the importance of the hips, durability, technique, therefore making it a smaller step to RBSD in my opinion.

Considering the hands are the primary tools, boxing is not a bad place to begin, having said that I started in judo, but what the hell, my kids will do both!!!
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Buster on Thu Aug 31, 2006 9:36 am

Jk i think you hit the nail on the head there, there is a lot of guys out there who dont have realistic training near them, my nearest is 20 mins on the bus and and hour on the train, very expensive and time consuming, if it was clsoer i would be there more often.

some of us have to take arts such as boxing and judo and make them fit the best they can.

joh "awesome" anderson is infamous for his left hook, people like Geoff where knocking people out a lot as well with boxing punches, Geoff even said ona podcast that the amatuer gusy where getting k.o's on the street becuase they are taught power and accuracy.

I owuld also like to know which punches are best fro the street, i suppose straight rights??

Maty evans on a dvd i watched talked about uppercutting people with the thumb end of hammerfist, just whips it up, he says to imagine that your bottling someone, he also throws some weird angualr punches as well, i think these come from the old days of boxing.

BUSTER Very Happy
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Monty Sneddon on Thu Aug 31, 2006 9:36 am

Thanks for replying folks... It's good to get other peoples opinions.. Smile

I'm heading home from work so I look forward to see what's waiting for me tomorrow!! lol!
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Jamie Wadman on Thu Aug 31, 2006 1:31 pm

A very good post.
I have only ever boxed, no other martial art.
I am a pro trainer now and spar with pros all the time.
I have been involved in ALOT of street fights. I must say that the majority of people cannot punch, i have been punched first, but i have never been punched back!!!!!
I'm not boasting, just saying that boxing punches, with a tweak, are LEATHAL!!!!!
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  Sea Bass on Fri Sep 01, 2006 7:45 pm

I've been doing Kung Fu San Soo for a couple of years and have come to a crossroads with it. What I'm intrested in is pure self defence which I feel that I have gained from it. It now feels that all there is left is becoming a Martial artist, which I can care less for. So I am starting to feel that I could gain more from Boxing at this time. if any thing it will help me to put my combos together better. I do some RBSD with a partner but only once a week so I would like to fill in some more training. I think boxing has more to offer.
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Re: A question open for debate....

Post  andy.fearn on Sun Sep 03, 2006 3:54 am

boxing give me the training to punch properly and now i just adapt a few technques to suit
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Re: A question open for debate....

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