Geoff Thompson

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Geoff Thompson

Post  Rob Mac on Tue Apr 08, 2008 11:23 am

Steve, just wondering what you think of Geoff Thompson. I haven't met the guy but have read a few of his books and enjoyed some of his DVD's etc. I found his direct approach very refreshing, appealing to those nagging doubts about your training. I see alot of similarities with yourself, his animal day stuff may not of been as full on as your old school in the west end but it's certainly along the same lines. He also isn't afraid to say something is tosh if it's tosh as well as being able to dedicate himself to a goal. What do think?
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  steve morris on Wed Apr 09, 2008 6:06 am

Personally I can't see any similarities between us. There's some cross-over of ideas, but we're two very different animals.

I've never met him. Keep expecting to bump into him in Coventry, but I guess unlike me he doesn't need to catch the bus!!
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Rob Mac on Wed Apr 09, 2008 9:08 am

Do you ever get pissed off that you've had the critical acclaim without the dosh? I think we all know very average Instructors (not imho GT) who have made a good living out fighting arts. I reckon with the success of mma this will start to become less frequent. cheers Rob
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  steve morris on Fri Apr 11, 2008 5:15 am

I think 'pissed off' doesn't quite capture the level of my feelings with regards to those martial artists and combat experts who collectively ain't worth a bucket of warm piss, and who make money hand over fist from guys who either don't know any better, or don't care.

The late David Dubow, my patron and mentor, used to often remind me that you don't have to be able to lay an egg in order to know when one is rotten. That might apply to a lot of things in this life, but it doesn't apply to martial arts. The way martial artists are moving, what they're saying, what they're doing--if it was eggs, the smell would be overwhelming. But people gobble up what they've got to offer.

MMA has been embraced by some--thank god--but for the majority of martial arts it seems to have driven people in the opposite direction. There was a harder breed of martial artist, as I remember them, in the 60s and 70s even within the most restrictive traditions. But now any tosser can become an instructor. And there seems to be an overcompensation for the reality of the fight, in the rise of Fa Jing, pressure points, and all the other mystical, soft options that are around today.

MMA, or any combat contact sport, the guys in it have an opportunity to make money. But that's not necessarily long-lasting, and it's money they've earned through fucking hard work, putting their reputation and their life on the line. And it really hurts me when I see that sometimes these guys end up with nothing at the end of their career.

With your money-making career-martial-arts instructor, though, he wouldn't last ten seconds in the ring with even an average fighter in any contact sport. Yet he makes himself a nice living teaching people bullshit. And it doesn't seem to bother these guys. In fact, I've had a few of them come to me and give me advice how I might cash in on the kind of racket they've got going. To look at the marketplace out there as meat.

That's what really pisses me off.
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 11, 2008 5:55 am

Steve, while not in any way near your position I can definitely relate and understand. I don't try to push MMA or similar methods and usually look at it as "my way of training." What I mean is simply "that is how I prefer to train" since it gives me the realism I need as well as a full plate of training. Some how I can't seem to get my point across to others as to "why." Why would I do that if I'm not looking to fight professionally or expect to get in any serious street fights? I guess if you can't understand it then I shouldn't try to explain. Sometimes I feel that if you can't understand it then I could never explain.

Tommy

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Rob Mac on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:00 am

What an excellent answer Steve!! It is so easy to lie to yourself and tell yourself what your doing is the 'real deal' however...I've done it. In fact it's been you that's recently really turned things around for me in my training, which is quite funny as we haven't met. What I've nicked from you isn't technique though, it's quite hard for me watching your stuff and then practicing it. Alot of this stuff IMHO you need to train with you and then get the dvd. What I'm starting to understand more and more is the mindset that you talk about. I've been holding back so much in the past, making excuses etc, I realise that now. cheers Rob
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  steve morris on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:28 am

Rob Mac, I think that the difference between guys like us and the bullshit brigade is that we're self-critical. Your post proves that. Not self-critical in terms of where you put your foot or what do you do with your hand, but questioning 'where am I in this bigger picture of fighting?'

To me the real question is 'Why MMA?' It's definitely not an exact replica of the streetfight, although it's closer than any of the martial arts, so why is it so important?

For me it's the fact that MMA is continually evolving, and I want to be part of that evolution, not stuck in a backwater.

There are lots of systems out there which are very creative. But they don't test it. It's just possibilities. For a possibility to become a probability, you have to test it in an environment that is representative of a fight, against somebody who's out to get you for real.
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:44 am

steve morris wrote:you have to test it in an environment that is representative of a fight, against somebody who's out to get you for real.

To some degree, most kinds of training then must be a little false? To train for a fight against someone with bad intentions, surely we need to actually fight aginst someone who has genuine bad intentions, rather than someone who is pretending to have them? ie...we need to know we have a risk of getting hurt?

Just thinking aloud here...

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:48 am

I know that when I fight with someone in a full contact situation I have pretty bad intentions (within reason). I also know that my opponent does also. Ever see the amount of blood in some MMA bouts?

While it isn't a street fight nor does it contain the possible dangers of a street fight, IMO it is as close as you can reasonably train (in more ways than just contact). Why choose less?

Tommy

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:54 am

Tommy_P wrote:While it isn't a street fight nor does it contain the possible dangers of a street fight, IMO it is as close as you can reasonably train (in more ways than just contact).

I totally agree.

In a match/mma fight though with rules etc, whilst we can certainly get hurt, we are not going to get stabbed or glassed or similar. I am wondering how we can mimic those kinds of dangerous situations, without having students cut or bottled?

Even when practicing drills specifically to desensitise myself to adrenaline dump etc, or sparring, I have never felt anything like the adrenaline rush, tunnel vision and sheer weight of focus like I have felt in a real situation on the street.

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  steve morris on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:56 am

When the guys at Primal fight, there are conditions set. For safety. But the safety conditions don't interfere with the ferocity they fight with. Some of these guys are REALLY GOOD FRIENDS. But to watch them fight, you wouldn't think so. They have parameters, just like soldiers training. But within those parameters, they are going after each other like it's for real. They aren't faking it.

Now, it's impossible in training and even in competition, to have an all-out fight because the risks would be too great. There have to be some safety factors; otherwise guys would really be killing each other. But just because there are safety restrictions, that doesn't invalidate the training. Providing that the safety restrictions aren't too limiting.

With many martial arts, their exponents claim the techniques are 'too deadly' to be used for real. Well, I'd rather practice a skill that's less deadly and can be tested, than to put my faith in something that I've never tested for myself outside of a drill or a choreographed display.

And the other thing that you have to remember, is that guys who fight this way are hardened. Their mental, physiological, and physical faculties are tempered in a way that you can't get other than in a fight. I'm talking about boxing, Muay Thai, MMA, submission--you put your regular Joe martial artist against one of those guys and you'd better wish him luck because he's going to need it.
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  steve morris on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:56 am

Tommy, just read that. Light Fantastic: there's your answer.
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Rob Mac on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:58 am

I think it can be the closest to the street, I do wonder however sometimes when you see a chess game on the ground! I love it when you get a good Thai boxer who can mix it on the ground but only so he can put in a bit of G&P. That's what I want to be, that's my goal. I have a long way to go with my ground game however, a long, long way. But fuck it what's life without a challenge.
I had some fat 30 something say to me the other day 'why do you wanna do all that at your age it's not fuckng normal' I had to come out with the old Quadraphenia saying 'what is fucking normal sitting at home watching tele all night, is that fucking normal!'



This is a random clip I found amusing but didn't think it deserved it's own post... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e2_bKP2GMTU&NR=1
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 11, 2008 6:59 am

Light Fantastic wrote: Even when practicing drills specifically to desensitise myself to adrenaline dump etc, or sparring, I have never felt anything like the adrenaline rush, tunnel vision and sheer weight of focus like I have felt in a real situation on the street.

I guess that is where it gets personal. How one develops that over the edge crazy in such situations is very much the individual. Pressure, pressure, pressure, the more you feel the more you adapt and the more all out you may be able to go. However, like I said...that being very "personal," it may work differently for everyone. For me it is turning that fear/adrenaline into controlled/uncontrolled madness....if that makes sense Smile

Fighting all out in a pressurized environment of an MMA match at least gets me in the ball park....finding my seat may be a little more work but at least I'm 3/4 of the way in.

Tommy

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Rob Mac on Fri Apr 11, 2008 7:07 am

Light Fantastic, I personally think there is far too much 'what if' scenarios. I could give you a list of situations and scenarios as long as my arm that I've been involved in, and that you could'nt possibly train for. Many of them involve prolonged physical activity i.e fighting and running and then fighting and running. So many SD people aren't physically capable of doing even this, they are too busy recreating imaginary scenes from the last Die Hard movie, and talking about code yellow or whatever.
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  steve morris on Fri Apr 11, 2008 7:09 am

OK, the way you get in control of the adrenalin dump is by having high stress situations in the gym. There's lots of ways we do that at Primal, both specifically and non-specific. It's training the man. Getting a handle on the man first. The tools come second.

I would suggest, from what you're describing, that your training in the gym may not be intense enough, and that could be because most trainers don't know how to raise the level of intensity without it turning into a free-for-all. It's not an easy thing to understand or to translate into training. But it can be done.

The same principles can be applied to training with weapons.

Developing that fighter's mindset is the real key, and it's a ruthless ferocity that you get by fighting--not by talking about it, because there's a lot of talk on the internet about 'mindset'. There's a gamesmanship that comes with practice: taking punishment, as well as dishing it out. The fight is more important than any drill you can devise. If you're accustomed to the violent chaos of the fight, then you're halfway there. Without that, all the adrenalin dump drills or pressure-testing in the world are academic.

By the way you guys are posting too fast for me to keep up...that's me done. Discuss! I gotta drive the baby...
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  steve morris on Fri Apr 11, 2008 7:10 am

Bloody hell, I'm trying to get out of here. Rob Mac...yeah, it's true. It's all true.

It really is so much bullshit.
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 11, 2008 7:15 am

Rob Mac wrote: Many of them involve prolonged physical activity i.e fighting and running and then fighting and running. So many SD people aren't physically capable of doing even this, they are too busy recreating imaginary scenes from the last Die Hard movie, and talking about code yellow or whatever.

Thank you....that is something I can never seem to get across to those who haven't been there. Everyone thinks that they "don't live in that type of environment." The term "shit happens" just about covers it all for me. You better be ready unless you have a good weapon! But then again I've seen shit like that happen in plain old bar fights where you are forced to fight all out...maybe run and then continue or whatever. In that situation you can't shoot the guy....it's not that deadly of a situation. Just one where, if you aren't battle hardened, you'll get a serious possibly hospitalizing beating!
The situations are so varied you can never explain it all, nor can you train for it all. Just becomae that "wrong guy to fuck with" and then go from there.
Actually I gotta run too.....a little family emergency....I'm out

Tommy

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  JonLaw on Fri Apr 11, 2008 7:48 am

Rob Mac wrote:Light Fantastic, I personally think there is far too much 'what if' scenarios. I could give you a list of situations and scenarios as long as my arm that I've been involved in, and that you could'nt possibly train for

and even if you could train for them, you'd end up with a catalogue of 'what if' responses which would be nice but not comprehensive and would the transfer to other scenarios be appropriate? Thats the concern.

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Rob Mac on Fri Apr 11, 2008 8:03 am

What MMA brings to the table in terms of 'real' fighting IMHO is that through hard physical training it creates a well rounded fighter and athlete with a mind to win. Thats what it all about to me, developing a winning mindset with the tools to carry it out. Someone posted a topic about ten guys onto one, what would you do etc. MMA gets you used to taking lumps, used to going down/covering getting back up and more importantly fit so you can run like fuck when you have the chance.
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 11, 2008 10:22 pm

Bloody Nuisance wrote: But I think it's ridiculous when some people try to denigrate MMA by saying it's not "real."

They also say "MMA has rules, real fighting (and karate) doesn't." Well I sure couldn't tell by watching a point fighting match! Oh but wait! That is not how they would really fight in the street!!! I can never believe that they don't see the other side. So in other words "mixed" martial arts...meaning experience in more than one thing, can't fight better or use its dangerous techniques when the rules are lifted? Is that only something reserved for karate experts? Yes an MMA bout has rules. But in the street anything goes and I think the MMA fighter has a lot more going for him when the rules are lifted. Stupid argument!

Tommy

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Rob Mac on Sat Apr 12, 2008 2:07 am

That's so true Tommy, like a bjj player would have no idea how to deal with you trying to bite his ear off or eye gouge! I've heard so much about 'what' these experts would do in certain situations and after training with some of these guys(bjj) I realise what a load of tosh it is.. they have obviously never tried it a live situation. The guys down in Puerto Banus(Barra Gracie) come from South America, chiefly Brazil and Argentina do you really think they would yield because someone getting their fingers in their eyes. BOLLOX. There's a guy called Edsun down there who basically wins every BJJ and MMA comp he enters here in Spain. The reason he does all this ...he just loves fighting and MMa is the nearest he can get to it the same goes for us. Cheers Rob
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Sat Apr 12, 2008 6:20 am

I agree with the above two posts (Rob and Dylan) and more than that you need to worry about ground and pound. Your hands have to be busy as does your body to fight for better positioning. That leaves little time for "iffy" techniques that you have never actually tested. I did the point thing but never liked it. From early on in my karate training I was fighting after class with anyone who was willing, full contact bare knuckle (only kiss contact to the face). Actually when I first started in karate there was no safety gear. When the laws started to say you had to wear them I began the after class sparring. But even later on with my Kyokushin training...when I got to MMA my weak spot was protecting my head and face.

But more than that, I am addressing something else. I'm addressing the fact that any MMA training facility usually includes self defense in their advertising. Thats because it is "martial arts." Some people (karate) seem to forget or "ignore' that. It's martial arts practiced to its fullest as can reasonably be practiced. The best thing I've read about this is something Steve just said above and it is something I read once about Jagoro Kano and his formulation of Judo out of JJ. Why practice all that so called deadly stuff that 'might work" ( you don't know because you can't practice for real on a partner). More time should be spent perfecting what you "know" will work because you can actually test it and refine it.

When karate practitioners say that they don't enter an MMA bout because it is a sport with rules and that they "have no rules," what are they actually saying? Are they telling the MMA fighter that they want to fight him in an anything goes situation? Laughing Come on now...who do you think will come out on top in that scenario? I practice MMA now and I was a traditionalist for years. There was no memory wiping machine I had to connect to before joining the MMA club!! How many more like me training in MMA...once again "MIXED MARTIAL ARTS"

Karate can be a good thing and I still use a lot of what I learned some where, somehow. But I don't use it "as I learned it." I just don't go near any of the training methods...they don't work. Karate can be good if you just take the techniques and look for the principles that support them and work them from that angle. Those principles allow the technique to be fitted to "you' rather than a one size fits all. I don't kiss off karate as not being valid. I just think the training methods don't bring out its effectiveness. Somewhere it lost its identity. But looked at froma different angle it can still be added to your "mix"....as long as it doesn't become "everything you're about."

Shit...I don't even remember what this thread was originally about anymore Very Happy

Tommy

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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Nick Hughes on Sat Apr 12, 2008 9:34 am

Tommy,

Mate, it would seem it's not only the karate advocates that want two bites of the cherry.

You said..

But even later on with my Kyokushin training...when I got to MMA my weak spot was protecting my head and face.

For those that don't know Kyokushin doesn't allow punching to the face in their full contact sparring which is undoubtedly why Tommy had the quoted weakness ingrained into him. In other words he was reacting the way he'd trained to react. (nothing wrong with that because other wise what is the purpose of training)

But here's the problem so eloquently pointed out by Tommy...if you're training to shoot in and take someone to the ground on a regular basis guess what you're going to do in the street? You don't have to take my word for that (or Tommy's). Google the story about the Gracie chap who broke his knee cap shooting in on someone on a New York sidewalk (where are those pesky mats when you need them?) Why did he shoot in on concrete? Why did he shoot in at all? Because he trains to do that because he's CONSTANTLY training to fight one person at a time.

If your ground game involves cool things like armlocks that make your opponent tap out in the ring just what are you hoping to achieve with them in the street. Either your opponent doesn't know anything about tapping in which case your faced with the dilemma of breaking his arm (excessive for a fight that began as some name calling and shirt grabbing) or, letting him go and hoping he's learned his lesson? Which one would you do?

Hey, what if he does know how to tap? You're going to let him up now are you confident that he's not going to continue the fight because he's tapped out? Good luck with that one.

All your leg locks and arm locks in the street then, and all your cranks etc have almost zero viability in the real world then, unless you're in a fight that justifies crippling, maiming or killing someone.

Don't get me wrong (again Very Happy ) I've been advocating knowing how to fight you're way off the floor since about 1970 but I'll be fooked if I'm going to practice ad nauseum stuff like voluntarily taking someone to the ground where I'm going down with them, and putting on locks that have almost zero real world application.

Nick
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Re: Geoff Thompson

Post  Guest on Sat Apr 12, 2008 9:46 am

Everyone should take the tools and use them accordingly. I happen to like MMA training as it allows me to practice everything I know in a more realistic environment. By everything I mean even my karate techniques. While clinched or sparring I try and find opportunities to do the little nasty things I may have in my arsenal....personally I don't find it so easy to pull off. Aside from that "for me" I take the whole package; ground fighting and all. I don't prefer ground fighting as I'm not a competitor so don't feel it's all that necessary for me. But I do it because I want to be comfortable on the ground if I end up there and be able to avoid going there in the first place.
To defend against it I feel you should first know how it works in offense. But my personal preference is pain by way of fists and feet!!!! I like the knockout and I certainly don't want to fight on the ground in the street. However I do find the pressure of the training top notch when it comes to fight training. It is more than just shooting. It is the lifts and body slams (reminiscent of the street) the tackles around the waist (again the street) the high body rushes (like the street) the trips etc.

Tommy

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Re: Geoff Thompson

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