The famous Japanese swordsman, Musashi, wrote, "Make your fighting stance your everyday stance, make your everyday stance your fighting stance." Provocative insight from a man who survived over 60 actual life and death duels and then wrote his classic text on strategy, The Book of Five Rings.
Still, hundreds of years later, martial artists often fail to incorporate Musashi’s brilliant premise. Why? Musashi’s prowess was legendary. His fights were for real. Perhaps it is because martial artists often do not understand real fights, real violence?
- Real fights start without consent: You didn’t choose to be in the fight.
- Real fights occur in what started out as everyday situations.
- Real fights are not cement friendly: There are no judo mats or boxing rings.
- And real fights invariably start standing, or in very close proximity, with some sort of verbal assault as a prelude to the physical attack.
In addition, you must train for defense against more than just the street ambush. For example, you must also train for domestic and business situations that suddenly go wrong.
Toward accomplishing this:
- Nurture fear management skills and verbal de-escalation tactics.
- Possess a basic appreciation of predator/prey interaction.
- Learn the natural stance theory.
For more than 20 years, Blauer Tactical Confrontation Management Systems has explored the natural stance theory. From our research, we have developed and now teach a system of non-violent postures.
Non-violent postures are based on natural postures and real-life gestures. Therefore, however you happen to be standing when you’re ambushed or you decide it’s strategic to strike, you’re ready. No wind up. No power base shift. No posturing. Just bang! How and where you’re standing becomes the launch pad for your first strike.
How this is done is described in the opening quotation: "Make your fighting stance your everyday stance, make your everyday stance your fighting stance."
Musashi understood that any hint of preparedness would alert his opponent. This just makes the fight more difficult. This telegraph invariably comes in the form of body language.
Communication is made of three components: Body language, tone, and words spoken. Your body language accounts for about 60% of communication, tone 30%, and words 10%. However, the message your posture, tone, and words transmit must be congruent. Otherwise, doubt arises. For example, clenching a fist sends a louder message than a verbal assertion such as, "I don’t want any trouble." Your tense body language promotes reaction even if you really do not want to fight. In addition, unnecessary muscular tension (to include the contractions necessary to hold a fighting posture) interferes with your instinctive athletic system and affects your breathing. Finally, a stance afflicts your spontaneity and predisposes you to tactics that may be inappropriate.
Recognizing this, the Blauer Non-Violent Posture System incorporates natural positions. Natural positions accommodate different moments and emotions. For example, when you question or suggest, the stances are alive and flow naturally, as in everyday conversation. This enables you to communicate freely and effectively.
The science, value, and effectiveness of this system is that its use actually depends on the pre-contact stages that precede most real fights, making this approach truly clandestine.
Also, by incorporating congruous gestures of everyday conversation, you keep your muscle fibers active and loose, enhancing immediate response. This decreases reaction time, even following a surprise attack.
Each non-violent posture has been analyzed for close quarter effectiveness, and each non-violent posture has an accompanying protective arsenal in case of sudden ambush during the verbal stages. For a provocative look at these principles, check out our Science of the Sucker Punch video.
- Incorporate your natural stances, using the way you really communicate. Therefore, they are easy to learn, easy to use.
- Help you verbally de-escalate situations. The use of natural stances actually relaxes people; they enhance communication and will facilitate a non-physical resolution whenever possible.
- Decrease your reaction time should you need to engage an adversary quickly.
- Learn to use intelligent body language to communicate.
- De-escalate and avoid confrontations.
- Develop close quarter confidence that will offer you the first strike advantage.
Copyright Tony Blauer/Blauer Tactical Systems www.blauertactical.com.
Tony Blauer is CEO of BLAUER TACTICAL SYSTEMS (BTS) which is one of the world’s leading consulting firms specializing in research & development of combative training & equipment for the military, law enforcement and self-defense communities. BTS has taught key performance enhancement, fear management, and combatives based on S.P.E.A.R. System research to military, law enforcement and civilian personnel since 1988.
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