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 The Needful Things

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Chris
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PostSubject: The Needful Things   Fri Apr 05, 2013 12:13 pm

Most martial arts training is an exercise in passive aggressive conditioning for insecure and frightened souls.

True or False?
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Mr Nobody

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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Sat Apr 06, 2013 9:10 pm

Define what you mean by "most". It sounds to me like there is some uncertaintly about which types of martial arts training we are talking about here...that's assuming we are going to make gross generalisations.
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Socrates

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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Sun Apr 07, 2013 3:16 am

Rewrite time...

If traditional martial arts are practiced without a sense of humility, they can become an exercise in passive aggressive conditioning for insecure and frightened souls. Have any of you had any experience of this?
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GOVINDA

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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:02 am

Chris wrote:
Most martial arts training is an exercise in passive aggressive conditioning for insecure and frightened souls.

True or False?


Agree somewhat, although if one breaks out of ones cage of insecurity, IE bites the bullet of extreme confrontation and survives, mentally and physically, it can be an enlightening experience, DUE to training in MA's......imo.
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Chris
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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:11 am

Hi all,

I was deliberate in keeping the scope of the discussion very wide and open to interpretation.

One of my pet peeves is that I feel much of the martial arts, self protection training that is offered is a haven for souls who are somewhat insecure and fearful.

My point largely being that if you are confident you can fight, you don't go to someone to teach you how to fight. Even worse, you don't gravitate towards someone who tells you that fighting can be done "easily" or that they have a magic bullet which takes the fear and pain out of violence. That is manna from heaven for those who are already fearful of confrontation and violence, telling them that the hardship and pain can be taken out of confrontation AND you can handle violence without stress or elevating blood pressure.

Those who are already at home and capable in violent circumstances do not seek out instruction in how to handle violence. They simply do what needs to be done and move on.

There are of course other types of humanbeing who train. There are those who train in combat sports for health benefits and the challenge of contest. There are those who are in a profession who may need to sharpen vocational skills or become more specific in their skillset. The majority of students in martial arts will not undertake these types of training programmes, they will sink into a comfortable training programme which doesn't challenge them and doesn't force them to face the reality of the "martial" aspect of arts.

As the years grind on, I find this pet peeve becoming more and more an irritation. I see it as exploitation of the needy and vulnerable.
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Mr Nobody

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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:32 am

I understand what you mean now and I agree with you.
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Jagunco

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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:03 am

I have often considered that, despite a being told a lot of the time that martial arts (whichever one) is to accompantied by humility respect hard work so on so forth I have been VERY frequently dissapointed by the standards set by not only students but instructors.

Out of the instructors I have trained with over the years I'm on speaking terms with less than half of them purely because of their behaviour towards me or others. There's a few examples.

Stealing people girlfriends/partners or activly trying to.

Constantly exagerrating their abilitys in various areas

Grading students to suit their own needs and wonts rather than the ability and comittment of the student.

Taking advantage of less emtionally and socially secure students

I think the worst one was when I instructor who shall remain namelss borrowed several hundred pounds from a very socially akward student with a history of bullying with no apparent intention to pay it back. He was also sure that the person he borrowed the money from was so timid that he would not demand this money back.
The student left the club because of this rather than fae the instructor, and the instructor to my knowlege has made no attempt to contact him to apologise and offer to repy the cash.

There chris I think we have two perfect examples of what you're reffering to. The instructor, who basicaly has done nothing with his life but train in and then teach in his chosen martial art. Very unimpressive person when he isn't in charge of a class, obviously knows this with the amount of lies he tells about himself. but loves to lord over people and thus teaches.

And the poor student, who started karate to give himself confidence and was ultimately trodden on by the people he turned to for help.


And yes I'm familiar with the general martial arts population who like to turn up and have a planned activity for an hour without really caring how good they are at it. It is a harmless passtime I suppose so I don't really feel I can complain about it. Its still better than hanging about the house.

It is very fustrating when you see people who have been training for years making the same old mistakes, still bugging out as soon as they've no energy....
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Dave

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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:50 am

Chris wrote:
Hi all,

I was deliberate in keeping the scope of the discussion very wide and open to interpretation.

One of my pet peeves is that I feel much of the martial arts, self protection training that is offered is a haven for souls who are somewhat insecure and fearful.

My point largely being that if you are confident you can fight, you don't go to someone to teach you how to fight. Even worse, you don't gravitate towards someone who tells you that fighting can be done "easily" or that they have a magic bullet which takes the fear and pain out of violence. That is manna from heaven for those who are already fearful of confrontation and violence, telling them that the hardship and pain can be taken out of confrontation AND you can handle violence without stress or elevating blood pressure.

Those who are already at home and capable in violent circumstances do not seek out instruction in how to handle violence. They simply do what needs to be done and move on.

There are of course other types of humanbeing who train. There are those who train in combat sports for health benefits and the challenge of contest. There are those who are in a profession who may need to sharpen vocational skills or become more specific in their skillset. The majority of students in martial arts will not undertake these types of training programmes, they will sink into a comfortable training programme which doesn't challenge them and doesn't force them to face the reality of the "martial" aspect of arts.

As the years grind on, I find this pet peeve becoming more and more an irritation. I see it as exploitation of the needy and vulnerable.

Mostly I am in agreement with your comments. I think that a lot of Martial Arts clubs pass themselves off as a Self Defence system to attract students. If we are being honest, the vast majority of Martial Arts practitioners got involved due to self defence issues, bullying, victims of violence / robbery etc. Or as Chris mentioned simply to boost their confidence by learning to 'look after themselves'.

I see it to often these days that once the Martial Arts school has the student enroled they teach their style of Martial Art, be it Karate, Jiu Jitsu, Aikido and the student due to naivety takes this as self defence. I feel that the school gets away with this as the student doesnt know enough about 'self defence' to realise that the majority of these techniques will not work in a real situation.

The minority of instructors who do understand real violence and do include in their sylabus techniques which are suited to a self defence environment are hard to find. Other instructors either dont know or dont care about real life self defence and spend all their time teaching traditional techniques (because this is what they are good at) 70% of which are not applicable to what the student wants / needs.

I think that each club, instructor should take time with the prospective student to find out what it is they want or expect from the training, maybe even get them to fill out a simple form containing the question 'Why do you want to learn a Martial Art?'. The instructor should be open and honest, if they dont teach self defence then they should say so. This is part of the role of a martial arts instructor to show honesty and integrity, its not all about money.
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Chris
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PostSubject: Re: The Needful Things   Wed Apr 10, 2013 9:57 am

It's hard for some instructors to know the value of what they are teaching from a self protection perspective. If they have never sparred, never took part in a combat sport or never participated in live, active drills which aid in preparing a person for the reality of physical violence.

There may well be some instructors acting in good faith.
There may be some instructors who act dishonestly.

The end result is the same, a lack of objective evaluation and preparation leads to lack of preparedness in the student.

I like the thought of a student speaking with the instructor to clearly outline their personal goals within training but that still presumes a level of understanding, knowledge and integrity on behalf of the instructors part. Not to mention on the part of the student.

I've actually trained in only one "traditional" martial art. A freestyle karate complete with kata, air punching and board breaking. The class also offered the oportunity to spar (essentally light continuous kickboxing). I gravitated more toward combat sports I suppose, Judo, boxing, sub wrestling etc. Thing is, when I was training karate and a little later training at a local boxing gym I didn't KNOW which one was preparing me better for the reality of a scrap. I found that out elsewhere. If someone had asked me, even after being bounced around in Judo and punched in the head in the ring I would still not have know that combat sport was better training for self protection. I learned that much later.

I also don't believe that traditional martial arts by definition take advantage of students. I am sure that some classes (if not most) offer a great activity and many physical and emotional benefits to those taking part. I just rankle at the lack of objective testing in some instances and the advantage that some organisations and schools take of their students somewhat insecure and naieve natures. I also find that schools with an unhealthy obsession with "grade" and "ritual" are potential havens for bullying. Places where the higher grades have tacit approval to abuse the "lower" grades, not uncommon where the instructors rely on compliance and dominance of the lower grades for continued prestige in the class.

I have a regular training group of about six or seven lads and any one of them could and would likely kick the shit out of me in an actual match fight. I run the session simply because I have spent more time in my life training and thinking about training and I am willing to take the time to think about what I want to cover and how best everyone can develop and progress in line with the goals of the group. I roll and I get tapped regularly, I spar and I get punched in the head repeatedly, we have animal days and on any given day I would likely lose as many as I would win. In the majority of martial arts classes I have seen that simply would not happen.

I have also spent a lot of time and money to attend seminars and train with guys outside of the group and my comfort zone. I encourage the lads to go and roll or spar with others and take advantage of the fact that we have a good number of MMA clubs local producing good fighters. Not something I can imagine most martial arts classes recommending.
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