When it comes to Martial Arts Training Tips I have to recommend a couple of freestyle exercises. Freestyle, of course, is where you get to fight. You learn good control, but you still get to let it all hang out.
There are two particular Martial Arts freestyle Drills that should be done in class. The first one deals with freestyle specifically, the second deals with a more street oriented, or self defense, type of fight. Both should be done so as to become a well rounded fighter.
The first is the old standard, you take your place at the head of a line, and the people in line take turns attacking you. This is great stuff, as you don’t have time to think, you just learn to accept the situations as they develop, and do what you have to. A few times through the line and you learn how to survive in the simplest fashion.
The second drill, and one that isn’t done as often, is to set up a gauntlet. This is not going to be a set and gunfight type of fight. It is going to be a much more natural situation which actually duplicates what you might encounter in a real live street fight.
I learned this one many years ago, in Kenpo class, and we used to love doing it. The teacher would set up a gauntlet, ten guys in two lines facing each other. The fellow who was to run the gauntlet would turn away, and the teacher would point at three people.
The karateka would be given the command, and he would turn and saunter slowly between the lines. When he passed one of the fellows who had been pointed at, they would leap into an attack. He would never know when the attack would come (they might even come after he had passed), and he would never know from who.
Attacks would be a taken to winning a point. Thus, the fellow who walked the gauntlet could get three points max, but, if he was successfully ‘mugged’ three times, he might not get any. First person to reach seven points was declared the winner.
Guaranteed, this type of training teaches you to relax and yet be ready at all times. It is also a great work out, designed to sharpen you up like nothing else. What I liked about it the most, however, was that it did get us out of the ‘gunfighter mentality’ of set and explode, and into situations that one might encounter on the street, and this makes this gauntlet exercise one of the best martial arts training tips you will ever find.
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