Martial Arts humor from r/bjj. My favorite was Ninjutsu LOL
Tae Kwon Do: due to increasing circumference around your middle, you lose the ability to touch your toes and often to even see them. You cannot say no to weapons with metallic or glitter paint. You believe hairstyles and fashions reached their pinnacle in 1983
BJJ: You've developed the lightning fast ability to flop down on the ground upside down anytime someone threatens you or even raises their voices. You own more funny rashguards than ties. You know 30 ways to pass a Spider Guard but have no idea how to defend a punch.
Kung Fu: you lack any ability to cut your hair after you start to go bald - You are the king of the balding ponytail. You also have no ability to use your thumbs for anything, preferring to act like you have stiff mannequin hands. You've also never found the secret technique to defeat your virginity
Wrestling: your head is permanently tilted back 15 degrees to try to make your traps look bigger. A childhood of constant weight cutting made sure you never got taller than 5'4. You think the Bowl (Moe) haircut is the best thing ever
Army Combatives: you passed level 1 so you think you're basically a UFC Fighter
Marine Combatives: you got your tan belt so you think you're basically Rambo
Kali/Escrima: you're ready to pull your weapon and go to prison for 30 years if someone even looks at you wrong. You bring up how many knives you have on you at all times in even the most casual conversation.
Gracie Combatives: You've trained. for 14 months and can't resist criticizing "Sport" Black Belts with 20 years of experience. You've also been running your own school for 9 of those 14 months. Your gis are spotless.
Krav Maga: you think you're the only people in the world who figured out that hitting someone in the eyes or balls would hurt them. You've basically turned spazzing out as hard as you can into a "martial art"
Karate: see Tae Kwon Do but with more grimacing, angry faces, and broken boards.
Systema: Russia gave the world Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, Kandinsky, Stravinsky, and more. That almost makes up for them inflicting Systema on us.
Judo: You're 27 but have the body of a 117 year old bull rider. You make sure to tell every other grappler the correct Japanese name for the move they're doing and how it actually came from Judo anyways.
Ninjitsu: you're name is Dylan and you're from the suburbs. You're Dad's a dentist. You're not a ninja.
Boxing: kicking isn't fair, grappling isn't fair, clinch fighting isn't fair. Take those out and Boxing is the most realistic, manly fighting style there is. Also, all shorts should be made to slide all the way up to your nipples
Muay Thai: yes, we know, you broke a baseball bat with a kick once. It takes longer to pronounce the names of the fighters in a Muay Thai match than it does for them to fight.
Sambo: Like the readout in the Terminators eyes, all you ever see are the words "dive on foot". You shave your legs but your gis have epaulets so that's pretty awesome.
Aikido: you're basically powerless if no one grabs your wrist or comes running at you with an overhead chop (the way most fighters do). I Don't know if it's worse getting thrown by an Aikido practitioner or smelling like patchouli wherever they touched you afterwards.
Hapkido: a thousand different organizations and each one will tell you why all the other ones suck. They are extremely dangerous if you attack them exactly the way they ask you too. And, you don't resist.
Catch Wrestling: the Krav Maga of grappling.
Savate: a truly terrifying martial art. Because anyone who lost a fight to a French guy would have to kill themselves in shame. Cheap to learn because you only need to borrow your sisters ballet slippers and you have your outfit
Sumo: gotta love any martial art where the weight classes start at Obese and go up from there. From Japan - the nation that loves fat guys in diapers slapping each other and tentacle porn.
Kenpo: or is it "Kempo?" Which is it? Actually, never mind. No one cares.
Capoeira: weird to name a martial art after the worlds largest rodent from South America. After a capoeira fight, you're not sure who won or lost but you are pretty sure one of you is pregnant
MMA: you can't "afford to pay for training" but have roughly $30,000 worth of tattoos. You get confused how to make a complete sentence without "bro" or "brah". You're 3-7 amateur but tell everyone you'll be in the UFC in the next 6 months. You have at least one serious injury at all times
UFC Style: You don't actually train. Your closet contains only wife beaters. You have the same amount of tattoos as the MMA guy but only spent $22.13 on them. You've never trained any real martial art or fought but have your own fighters page on Facebook."
In "The Accountant" from 2016, Ben Affleck plays an accountant who is a math savant. He is hired to uncook the books for a new client as the Treasury
Department closes in on his activities.
Affleck learnt Silat for his role as Christian Wolff the accountant. I was a little disappointed in the fight scenes, although I was entertained by the movie. Affleck has said Wolff is one of 5 favorite characters he has portrayed to date. The best fight scene IMO was Affleck's use of his belt to defend himself against Tait Fletcher's knife.
Fletcher played Thug #1 and he deployed his knife in his fight against Affleck. Ben took off his belt to use vs the knife.
Apologies if the page loads slowly, but I didn't want to split up the GIFs and make separate posts. Enjoy the video as well as 16 GIFs!
You can find the video at the link below if the embed video didn't work above:
What are the attributes of the -Classic- Safecracker?
What about the -Classic- Fighter?
High pain tolerance
Game Plan (not creating, following)
Incautious, Risk takers
Certainly you can find excellent fighters who have opposite attributes or tendencies. Fedor would be, on the surface, to have low-arousal, and need less stimulation. But once he goes into action he’s dynamic. Perhaps he has a higher sensitivity to the body’s propranolol analog (the drug soloists take to reduce performance anxiety)
At any rate, studying these elements can give us insight into the genetic bases of performance. Taken as a whole, genetics seems to trump all built up attributes. You only have a few Jesse Owens or Babe Didriksons per multiple generations. How can experience, life-experience rise to the occasion? We can look to elements like determination, consistency, will-to-win and other qualities which are combinations of attributes and desires. We can also analyze why some fighters fail (they have poor response to loss? they have low durability? they are highly ego-driven and thus can’t be trained externally?)
Individuals vary in their willingness to take financial risks. Here we show that variants of two genes that regulate dopamine and serotonin neurotransmission and have been previously linked to emotional behavior, anxiety and addiction (5-HTTLPR and DRD4) are significant determinants of risk taking in investment decisions. We find that the 5-HTTLPR s/s allele carriers take 28% less risk than those carrying the s/l or l/l alleles of the gene. DRD4 7-repeat allele carriers take 25% more risk than individuals without the 7-repeat allele. These findings contribute to the emerging literature on the genetic determinants of economic behavior.
We now have some research that shows that Risk-takers are those that have high quantities or high sensitivity to a particular molecule. They could have lower levels of it and still have an effect and higher levels of serotonin and not have as much effect. They need more stimulation to get a high.
Likewise it seems that the Safety-minded are those with a higher amount or high sensitivity to the the opposing type of receptors. They could have lower levels of that molecule and still have an effect, that of calm and carefulness. They need less stimulation to get a high.
"Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp, Or what's a heaven for?"
That sounds almost Shakespearean, but it's Robert Browning, English Poet (1812-89)
One of the greatest things for trainers and coaches in this era is the ability to video record yourself in training. Back in the day we didn't have this, although I had two friends who thought I was something special, haha, and did take a video 8 camera and record me sparring. The odd thing, of course I didn't really recognize myself, seeing from that angle, is that my arms looked -really- long. I mean freakishly long. At 5'9 I had a reach over 73", which is what you can touch on the wall arms out to each side.
Some of the heavyweight champs had an enormous reach, Ali is listed as 74" in some places and 80" in others. Foreman had a long reach. One of the shortest was Rocky Marciano at 68" and Tyson was only 71", proving that it's not always reach, huh?
So, the take-away I guess is to always try to find ways to 'reach for the stars' and keep your gaze up, head up, (though, you gotta look where you're going) and despite the aphorism, try to grasp as much as possible - seeing deeply is revealing and challenging. Not everyone is introspective. But everyone can see patterns and frameworks and connections if they work on it.
One of the longest reaches was the Soviet boxer Valuev listed in some places at 86" (Primo Carnera is also up there at 85"). Search Youtube for a cool fight between Holyfield and Valuev. (that's Valuev in the pic vs maybe David Haye, 2009)
Not just methods and means to make things flow, but knowing when not to have too much.
o Stress testing
Includes not just running things against levels of resistance, but also breaking things down completely periodically. You have to push your systems until they 'break'.
o Systems Management - yep, you manage your stuff systematically.
Creating terms is also a way of landmarking. The gunfighter’s ‘Safe Space’ is where the area has been cleared or visualized to be free of threat.
o Delivery Systems - everything has one. It's the 'how' not the 'what'.
o Describing methods and means of production (theories and templates).
I wish Mr Harris would do a book on these. He shines in that area and I don't know if he's put down on paper how he does this. The BJJ over 40 and other vids show he's done that breakdown. It's his 'method of production'. I'm sure he's a bit reluctant to let these out to the 'public', but he shouldn't be. Ideas are like rain - they fall on everyone but sometimes only a few notice (Guro Dan). One might think Roy is a brilliant instructor. But that's just the by-product. He has the best system of 'seeing deeply' that I've ever seen. Come on Roy Harris, do that book!
o Multiple opponents, Multiple Venues. - you must have these, otherwise your systems and methods are superficial.
Don't just read this list, import it and give (self-check) examples of them in your current life and current regime.
The best description of 'transparency' I give is how the bicycle changed in 1985. Prior to that, you had what they call 'downtube shifters'. You had to take your eyes off the road and reach forward and monkey around with your shifters to change gears. Hard to do if you were approaching a climb or if you hit a sudden terrain change.
Also they had 'cages' that your feet went into to try and connect you with the drive train better than just pedals. But still your foot moved around and it wasn't a firm connection. A lot of the time your foot would slip forward and you'd have to shimmy it back.
In 1985 or about they came up with 'brifters' and 'clipless pedals'. Now the shifters were on the handlebars, shifted with a 'click' and were positively engaged. The pedals would clip into cleats in your shoes. The position and firmness was absolute.
Thus you no longer had to 'think about it' when riding. You clipped in and forgot about foot position. You shifted many times more often and never had to take your eyes off the road.
These are some of the important elements which can help bring about ‘performance’.
I could write a book on coaching, what it is, what it isn’t, and how, ultimately it’s a matter of learning to self-coach.
You, are the talent. Life experience, genetics, the intangible, the internal. Everything else is the coach, the external, the tangible.
In the field of MA and SD, usually the people are motivated to go into that are losers, genetically not gifted (they couldn’t do team sports), and probably have been at one time or another bullied. Often they start out in poor health so they get into something like this to bring them up to ‘normal’.
Problem with this is they often put their ‘eggs’ into the basket of another. A charismatic trainer usually called by an oriental name. While this can work for a while ultimately it can be self-defeating. This type of regime ends up with the person focused on idolizing their trainer and becoming stagnate in their performance beyond a certain level. They are a big fish in a small pond, sometimes deluded or even self-deluded.
I think we can look in two areas to find good coaches. Team sports (they are dedicated to winning) and Acting (they are dedicated to making money). You don’t find bad coaches, usually, in team sports. They get weeded out. You find very few good coaches in Acting, but you find a lot of scam artists, so beware. Use these as models for what works.
It’s external which needs to become internalized, functionalized. A coach bring experience and is often not a particularly good ‘performer’ themselves.
You probably do best by compartmentalizing your coaches. Life coach, financial coach, offensive coach, defensive coach, physical trainer, medical trainer, gopher, personal assistant, training partner.
These are all types of coaches. The coach brings the experience of having seen it all in a variety of different types of individuals, so, hopefully they know that one size does not fit all. Are you audio, visual, tactile, or some combination of learner? Can you judge your own abilities or do you need external help? Are you your own worst enemy? (Most of us are and don’t know it). Are you able to self-motivate and bring that ‘talent’ out, or do you need hand-holding.
I’ll stop here, because you can actually go out and google ‘what makes a good coach’ and figure this out on your own. I just thought I’d offer some perspective that you don’t usually find.
Hope this helps. Go out there young grasshopper and find your passion.
But, first, a little background. One of my dreams from a young age was to 'rescue' people, things. I dreamt I was 'Superboy' and I would fly around and find abused kids and defend them or rescue them.
Now days, I feel that same thing from time-to-time, when I see old war-horses still suffering the loss of comrades, women who had their faces destroyed by acid or fire, people with disabilities.
I also realize that actually having that kind of superpower is fraught with problems. You can't 'touch' everyone. You'd end up doing nothing else in a world filled with billions who are suffering. And, worst of all you can't know what is in people's hearts. You might heal someone and have them go on, unleashed and take vengeance, or become a dictator. After all, it is often our pain and suffering which makes us 'who we are'. It would be like having the 'Ring of Power', like Galadriel in Lord of the Rings, and she turned it down.
So, instead, I thought, maybe it's better to teach the world something else, as the title says, to Dance. Dance by themselves, dance with a partner, dance with a group.
That, my friends, is exactly what the wonderful "instructors" of the Martial Way here, in our little group are doing. One student, one class at a time they are traveling the world and teaching people to dance.
I would issue two challenges. One, don't just teach the dance of death (I know you aren't by seeing your smiling faces and smiling students). Two, actually take your students out to a dance. Get them to do swing dancing, or jitterbug or something. Actually have 'dancing' as part of your promotional exams. I've often said that a MA who can't dance won't be a very good fighter.
Sorry about the diatribe, and thanks for reading. Now, go out in the world, or just your backyard and shake your booty, and do it like nobody is watching.
In any human activity or plan one of the hardest things to do but actually the most important is to achieve action and then consistency.
Any action is started as a feeling or subconsciously we might desire something, then we have a thought coalesce, and then a potential builds up. That potential may or may not reach the threshold for realization, and if it does there’s a ‘spike’ and the action is begun or accomplished.
So what is the point of knowing this? It’s to find ways to bring that subconscious desire to fruition. One way is to lower the threshold. If we can lower it enough, remove inertia, we can have the desire happen with less of a potential and it ‘just happens’.
We want to learn how to develop habits, how to make something that is now extraordinary ordinary so that you don’t need a lot of inspiration.
Typically, people try to build up inspiration, and after a while even the most rousing song or idea fades and it doesn’t work. So they move to other things, ergogenic aids, getting a training partner, going to a training camp.
But the truth is it must be from the internal. You can’t use external things reliably for long, to cause that action potential to fire. We habituate and there is the enemy of progress and training. We exhaust the synapses and habituate and the goal becomes less important.
Paradoxically, as we get closer and closer to the maximum trained state the body and mind try to play tricks to get us to stop, to rest, to do something else. It’s a distraction mechanism. It has to be thwarted or overcome.
So when you make your plans, try to lower the threshold needed. Pre-prepare your food, your equipment your itinerary so that when you wake up all of that is ready. Often your lowest action potential state is when you just wake up (for others it might not be that way).
Have your gear laid out the night before. Portion out your food and get it ready. Make sure the car is gassed up the tires pumped up on the bike. Don’t have an equipment failure or a prep failure increase the action potential.
One other thing you can do is make something a ‘no choice’ activity. IOW, you don’t have a three or four or five day a week thing. You do it seven days a week and there is no ‘choice’, only a ‘when’ not an ‘if’.
Next: Coaching, good or bad, self-coaching revisited.
Over-speed Training - Accessing the Subconscious and the Power of Threes.
People like improving performance. They like being faster. They want to ‘win’. But it is hard to know just how to do those things.
To begin with, we are all constrained by our beliefs, by our self-perceptions, by negative affirmations. I’m a plodder, I’m not young anymore, I came in last. Of course you can use these to spur ‘self-anger’ and thus increase motivation, but there’s more comfort in having a plan.
All of our movement, our ability has to come from work we’ve done, things we know internally. If you can harness the subconscious mind, you can get results you would not normally expect.
One way to do this is to find a competent hypnotist and from there with an implanted suggestion (you will get better and better at self-hypnosis) you can do your own programming.
You can actually program yourself to become someone else - this is what some ‘actors’ do. If you can enter the self-hypnotic dream state and actually assume another persona you can leave behind or shed your current constraints.
Methods of over-speed training. In cycling there are a couple things you can do to improve your speed. One involves faster turnover of the pedals - you ’spin up’ as it were. You can do wind tunnel testing, you can get a friend to ‘motor pace’ you (driving with or behind a car or motorbike in the slipstream), you can ride slight downhills on a ‘false flat’, and you can ride with a group that is slightly above your level. In jogging you can do similar things, but of course, wind resistance is less important. In swimming you can use flippers, hand fins, stationary pools swimming against a ‘jet current’. In weight training you can use elastic bands to ‘pull’ your limbs slightly faster than you might with muscle power. In kinesiology, you can find ways to use the body moment to move your limb faster than muscle power alone (the forward lean, the drop-step, use of hand-held tools, the body-shift). In all of these things, though you must keep up the training to maintain that edge.
You can also do what Guro Dan talks about and that is to develop ‘fast eyes’. You know how people move, how they telegraph, how they give a clue, and you know how to draw their movement by doing things like giving apparent openings.
There’s the famous method used by one of BL’s students to increase speed, using ’reflex speed’ or the speed you pull back from a hot stove. Various JKD groups talk about the burning step, and the 'hammer principle'. You can use a random generator to get the body reacting faster than the conscious mind normally allows. In fact some people think we are stronger and faster than we believe and the body is just using tendon stretch receptors to slow us down in a protective manner.
The power of threes. Music, rhythm, the beat, the half-beat, syncopation, these things can help you move faster. If you are doing a drill and inside you remember a really fast rhythmic beat and move according to that, you can seem to suddenly and almost magically increase your speed. Often speed increase is a matter of shedding your ‘governors’ as above, contextually, perceptually and psychologically.
The waltz uses a beat of 1-2-3. Syncopation can change that using a ‘grace note’. If you make a move go from being a stroke to being a grace note, it naturally speeds up.
In breathing it’s often helpful to think of breathing in and out in a staccato manner 1-2-3 sniffing in and out.
In analyzing a move you break it down into three parts and work on those separately.
Anyway this is getting long, so I’ll stop here but it can give you an idea of where to look and how to start working on this attribute or set of attributes. Pyramid power. Work on your base and layer up in groups of three.
1. Most of the principles of grappling do not work beyond beginner level.
2. This is OK, because most people do not get past beginner level. Most people return to beginner level when tired. There are ways to make your “opponent” go back to beginner level.
3. Find ways not to ‘get tired’. This is most of life.
4. All principles are metaphors, except when they are not.
5. The head is the most important principle, except when it’s not the head but the waist, except when it’s not the waist but the breath, except when it’s not the breath but the legs, except when it’s not the legs but defining the opponent.
6. It is important to remember the principles, except that you can never “remember” them when you need them, so it’s important to be able to instantly “derive” them when needed. To do that, since you can’t “remember” them you use ‘landmarks’.
7. It’s very important to get a ‘good grip’, but that is hard, so work to not need a ‘good grip’. Likewise you can keep the opponent searching for the good grip, that way he’s not able to focus on ‘winning’.
8. Winning is everything, except when everything is ‘not losing’.
9. Most things will fail when you need them most. Thus try to use them before you need them most.
10. Remember number four. When you can not, make up something new. That way you achieve number three.
This might sound 'deep' but it is really just 'superficial'.
To all the instructors in our little group. I hope all of you think about what I said on a few aspects of self-defense training, even though it might fly in the face of having 'clients'.
1. Situational Awareness is a myth. It will always fail you when you need it most. That does not mean you shouldn't be aware and not do the obvious, like be caught off guard looking at your cell phone. But, instead, you should emphasize and emphasize the need to 'partner up'. If you have a partner, train them and work with them as a moving team. If you do not have a partner, then elect one (for example always get an employee of a store to escort you to your car and watch while you pack up and then get in and wait until you pull out to leave.
2. All training must be based on 'non-attribute type methods'. IOW, a method that requires you to 'first be Bruce Lee' is nonsense. You will not always be strong and fast. That does not mean you should not train attributes, far from it. But your methods must be based on timing, leverage, de-escalation, surprise, and teamwork, etc. If it will not work for your 18 yo daughter, keep working on it, try another way. Like I said people talk about having their knives but they forget that they may need a knife that does not require strength to wield, because they've taken a glancing round to their hand or taken a hit. I would say if you don't have a push knife you are only part ready.
3. Emphasize what you must keep up on a daily basis. That is sustainability. If you are not doing something day in and day out to keep up your cardio, your breath, your intercostals, your diaphragm, your mitochondrial density, all this 'specific MA training' will be just window dressing. You must have a base. Your base is what will save you. You must train some in all five energy zones (which is why biking is good). Do not think that you can take a seminar and rely on your handspeed. It won't work.
4. Ultimately, the toughest people are those who have good genetics, who train in a 'combat sport' (which includes contact sports like rugby) against a multitude of opponents and who train for performance not specific skills. Yes, Top Dog was good at FMA, but his hidden attribute was that he was skilled in football which gave him his pressure and drive. It's the 'hidden base' which makes a person formidable not the finishing stuff. A person who is aggressive, tough and durable is going to be tough to beat no matter what you bring to the table with skill.
5. Keep going. The meme is if you wait by the river long enough you will see the bodies of your enemies float by. Your enemies are not other people, necessarily, they are your own foibles. Figure out how to keep going so that you are doing something into your 50s, 60s and 70s. THAT is when you are going to need your MA. If you go so hard and get injured in your 30s you will be a cripple in your old age and have to hire a bodyguard (or a young spouse!). Of course getting old is why we have firearms. Don't skimp on training up that. Have a layered defense for all aspects from in the home, on the street, on the highway and in the stores.
Hope this helps!
Of course in any comprehensive plan you must also include things like how to rest, when to rest, how to heal (we heal and improve during sleep)
How to not get injured, how to manage your nutrition and diet (look at all the portly Kempo guys!), and how to manage your emotions (you need to know both how to be calm and how to invoke the killing rage).
May the New Year bring Health, Happiness and Prosperity to you and your loved ones!
First a note though... probably due to burnout from active blogging the past few years, 2016 was a subpar year for me... I had only a meager 31 posts total for 2016. I am looking to pick up the pace again for 2017!!
OK, are you ready? Here we go!
Top 10 Popular Posts of 2016 (in descending order)
NOTE: #'s 10-6 most popular posts were select episodes of Raven... for the purposes of this list, I have not included the Raven episodes.
Click pic for larger image The Master (2015) aka The Final Master is a movie about a Wing Chun Kuen master who goes to Northern China...
Site Under Construction
Slowly but surely I've implemented changes to the site's look and functionality. I'm sure you have noticed the changes.Ecstatic that I've finally been able to successfully update my site closer more in line with my vision of it.
Not sure if it will be the final look of the site or not, but the Sojourn of Septillion Steps with respect to the site's look has already taken quite a few steps beyond the first!
I will still be endeavoring to put up information I think will benefit your martial arts training as well as your self-defense. I sincerely thank you for visiting/reading!
I remain very truly yours in the martial arts and self-defense,