Tag Archives: fut ga

The Hardest Hit in the World…and My Revenge!

We all want to have the hardest punch. We want to know that, in the event of muggery, thuggery or whatever, we can get the job done. What we don’t want is to be on the receiving end of a world class slobberknocker.

The fellow who delivered this dastardly strike, it was actually a kick, was my friend and fellow karate classmate. His name was Gary, and we were freestyling, and I threw a kick, he parried, and he side kicked me in the ribs. It was a powerful, classic strike, and I could feel my ribs bending, and it was the hardest strike I had ever experienced in the martial arts.

Truth, to this day, I have no idea why my ribs didn’t break. But I couldn’t breath, couldn’t talk, and I should have stopped and taken a breather, told Gary to kick with less force, seen to my protection. Being young, dumb, and full of…vigor, I continued.

Cleverly, I turned to the other side and continued to fight. I kept my range, circled, went tactical, and after a minute I could breath. Then I did something very stupid, I attacked.

I thought I was recovered enough, and I threw a side kick. Gary scooped the side kick and threw his own side kick. He was shorter than me, and his kick came up, hit me in the groin, lifted me off the ground.

Thirty years later, on a trip to the doctor for a routine checkup, he noticed that one of my testicles was shrunk. Yup, I knew that, and I knew as the doctor made his observation exactly when it happened. That second kick that Gary threw was the hardest strike I have ever experienced, it would have broken my ribs, but it didn’t hit my ribs, instead, it just squashed my apples.

At the time, I just continued to freestyle, survival mode got me through, but, eventually, I was to have my revenge for his out of control ways. He left the school, actually went to another school and taught, and then, six months later, he came back. I had not left, I had continued learning, and I had accomplished something I call Coordinated Body Motion, CBM.

All parts of the body move as one unit, and it is slow at first, but once one gets it, it is not just fast, it breeds intuitive responses. Freestyling with Gary at this later time I began kicking him, and kicking him, and kicking him, and because he didn’t have CBM, didn’t have intuitive responses as developed by Classical Martial Arts, he couldn’t block my kicks. I kicked his ribs until they bent, but I didn’t go beyond, he was, after all, my friend, and though friends make mistakes, they should always watch out for each other.

Monster Newsletter #273–February Fool’s Day!

Good Morning!
Good Afternoon!
Good Evening!
Whenever you get this it is good,
because you know
you are about to have the best work out of your life!

I mean,
if you keep doing work outs,
the work outs get better,
and that’s the big secret.
Just…keep…going!

Now,
it has been an interesting weekend.
I took out an ad on Martial Talk,
one of the forums on the net.
You’ll see it in the karate section.

I’ve stayed away from forums in the past,
because they tend to be collecting points for people with opinions
who want to talk down on you.

That said,
there is a wealth of information available,
a huge resource of knowledgeable people,
if you can avoid the bully boys.

Now,
it took me a week to figure things out,
and I’m still blurry,
but I figured I at least knew enough
to get my feet wet.

So I said hi,
and got attacked for spamming,
being a gimmick,
and so on.

Now,
I know there is suspicion on the net,
One should always be suspicious of anonymous masses,
but there are people there,
underneath the masses.
And it is people,
unique individuals
who do the martial arts.
Not masses.
Not mobs.
Not…bullies.

Besides,
I know that anybody who attacks me
doesn’t understand what I’m doing,
That’s okay,
I didn’t understand what I was doing
when I first set foot
in my first dojo.

We all start somewhere,
eh?

So I think I’ve got things fairly defused,
hopefully I’ve avoided the mob mentality,
and am making an impression on the individuals.
We shall see.

The point is,
and I thought about this time and time again,
over this weekend,
traditional is fine,
as long as it doesn’t bind.
If it binds,
you must set it aside.

This is almost a point of personal sanity.

I mean,
I want you to think about it,
if you guide yourself
only by the words of dead people,
you are as good as dead yourself.

It’s an art!
Where is your create?
You’ve got to create
to keep it an art!

But I know some of these fellows
are just holding on to the structure
that is traditional art
a little too tightly.
That’s all.

They aren’t bad,
and all I have to do is be polite,
and keep putting forth correct information.

The structure of the martial arts is tweaked,
good information is all it takes
to reset the structure
so that it keeps pumping out
the best martial artists in the universe.

So,
I’ll keep you updated,
It’s a lot of fun,
and reading the threads,
it sounds like people are willing to look
beyond the words of a few critics
who are attacking
when they haven’t even taken a course.

Cross your fingers for them.

Now,
let’s move into some martial arts.
Got a letter from a fellow,
said he had trouble remembering forms.
This happens.
Believe me,
this happens.
When forms haven’t been matrixed to make them true,
and related to functioning techniques,
they can be downright bizarre.
Not to mention weird and odd.

I think forms are important.
I think forms,
fully matrixed,
are a prayer.

But,
if you have trouble with forms,
start with the easiest form you know,
and just do it,
don’t try to learn anything else,
just do that one form.
Do it until you can do it backwards.
Not the reverse sequence of blocks and such,
but the actual reverse flow of the motions of the body.

Don’t try to learn something complex.
the mind doesn’t like complex,
learn something simple,
and learn it on an intimate basis.

The Iron Horse (Tekki, Kima Chodan, etc.)
is a simple form,
but the founder of karate spent some ten years learning it.

And,
if you want a simple form,
look through the articles section of the Monster and find House.
That simple form
done forwards, backwards, right, left, on the knees, with a stick,
and so on,
can be done two man,
with steps, in place, and
with other geometry.

But it is simple,
and you must hold to the simple.

The reason the mind likes simple
is because when you boil down the motion
you will find a simple concept.
One of the secrets of advanced martial arts,
is the ability to reduce all motion
to simple concepts.

Find the idea behind what you are doing
and it will make sense,
or
at least,
you can get rid of it with clear conscience.

Okey doke,

a couple of things,
newsletter is getting big.
I’m probably going to start putting it out on two days,
break it down to two groups,
and keep google from messing with me.
If I put out the newsletter,
even though I stay within their parameters,
they frequently shut down my mail.
I don’t want to go to servers
who specialize in newsletters quite yet.

When I expand to the Monkeyland Gazette,
I probably will,
but,
we’ll see.

Right now I am pinching pennies,
doing whatever I can
to get enough money set aside,
so I can get a truck and camper,
and set out on the Great Matrixing Tour.

I need to come see you.
(If you want,
I ain’t gonna show up on your doorstep,
less you got the mat out,
and let me know.)
I don’t want to be in your face,
I respect anonymity,
and who the hell wants some old man
comin’ around
telling you stuff?
Eh?

On the other hand,
have you ever heard of somebody who sells you a thirty dollar course,
and then travels across the country
in a vast conspiracy of quality control?
Hah!
I MUST be nuts!

Anyway,
I have people from Colorado,
Maryland and Arkansas,
so far.
Might take me a while
to get out to Maryland,
but I can start hitting the close places.

Okey doke

Here’s a link,
it is for Matrix Karate,
which is the template for matrixing,
sets forth the simple forms
that resurrect the mind and heart
and set one on the true path
of the true art.

Matrix Karate

You guys have a great work out,
and remember,
you will get where you are going
by working out,
so take two steps,
and work out twice.

Al
:o)

PS–If you want a great article that leads on to real power in striking, try googling, The Secret of Three Depths in Striking!

Maybe you are the “cool” generation If coolness means a capacity to stay calm and use your head in the service of ends passionately believed in, then it has my admiration.
Kingman Brewster, Jr.

Power Karate Kicks in Five Logical Steps

It makes no sense to let an attacker get close. If he’s got a knife or club, or just a better punch, the best strategy is to kick low and hard and keep him out of range. The problem is that many Karate schools do not teach the right way to use the legs.

A couple of things to remember before we get into making your kicks powerful. Practice high so you have strength and flexibility, but keep your kicks low in a fight so you don’t get a leg caught. And, the best strategy is to avoid the fight altogether whenever possible.

Practice kicking over a chair. This will train you to raise your knee high. When your knee is high your foot can go straight in and deliver the goods, and not arc up and scrape the body.

Turn your hips into the kick. Always turn, or tilt, your hips so that the weight of the hips is committed to the action. This will also give you a little more reach, and it will help put the whole body into the action.

Kick with the ball of the foot. I know many people like to bash with the instep, but they end up spinning around out of control. Kicking with the ball of the foot forces the artist to be an artist, and it concentrates more weight into a smaller striking area.

Bring the foot all the way back. Snap that foot back so that an opponent can’t grab it. This also tends to leave more power in the target.

Practice planting your foot on the target, then pushing. This usually means you will alter the kick, for this exercise, so that you can place the heel on the body of your partner, then push. This trains the exact muscles needed at impact.

Kicks are your first line of defense, don’t just practice these techniques a few times and forget about them, practice them hundreds of times a day for each kick. Whether you are training in Karate, or Tae Kwon Do, or Kung Fu, or whatever, a well placed kick can save your life. So practice, and look at your kicks, invest awareness, study the physics of a kick so that your kicks are effective and end the fight before it can even start.

Learn the Martial Arts Ten Times Faster!

It took me seven years to get my black belt in Karate, but it only took my instructor two and one half years to get his black belt. I always wondered at this discrepancy, but it wasn’t until I began to take apart martial arts systems that I understood why. It turns out that there are several reasons why it takes people longer and longer to get their black belts, and to truly learn anything in the martial arts.

When I took apart the system I had been taught I found two systems. I had not only learned the classical system of ten forms that my instructor had been taught, but I was learning an additional system of seven forms that my instructor had made up. I was also learning several other forms that my instructor had thrown into his teachings just because he thought they were valuable.

This is rampant throughout the martial arts. Ed Parker, for instance, of Kenpo fame, started out with simple karate forms. When he ran out of material to teach he started importing vast amounts of kung fu into his teachings.

Now the problem is not one of learning material, there is endless material out there. The real problem is separating the material into logical slices. Each of the slices must represent a logical look at an art.

If we were talking dance, we would be separating ballet from ballroom from whatever. If we were talking music we would be separating jazz from blues from so on. In the martial arts we must actually separate karate from kung fu from aikido from wudan…and so on.

When you separate the martial arts, you must understand the difference between basics and stylistic differences. You must understand that karate blocks, for instance, go out from the tan tien, and wudan type blocks are rotated off the turning torso, and silat blocks are slipping types of blocks, and so on. If you don’t understand these differences the arts remain complex and are difficult to absorb.

If you don’t understand these differences then you are mixing arts, and different ways of moving the body, and different ways of using energy, and so on. Thus, a peach becomes indistinguishable from an apple from an orange, and so on. Thus, the arts become a mush which the mind refuses to digest.

Understanding these differences, the arts become very easy to absorb, and the mind just absorbs and catalogues everything easy as pie. The martial arts, you see, are only illogical because we have made them so. Separate Wudan into Wudan, or karate into karate, or shaolin into shaolin, and the martial arts canbe learned in a matter of months, not years.

Monster Newsletter #269–Happy MLK Day!

Monster Newsletter #269–Happy MLK Day!

Good morning and a good work out to you all!

It’s a holiday,
from my man, MLK.
It was MLK,
you know,
who said he had a dream,
and he was in favor of everybody having a dream.
And you know what my dream is?
Getting everybody in the world to work out.

Yeah,
baby.
Billions of sweaty bodies
all doing a form at the same time.
Man,
the energy!

Not just holding hands across the US,
but working out!

Now,
speaking of working out,
rain has hit old South Cal,
the weatherman is trying to scare us
says there is
‘a parade of storms,’
slamming into us.

Well,
yeah,
that’s not scary.
That’s kinda cool.

It’s obvious the weatherman has not been working out.
Probably owns a chihuahua, too.
Heh.

Anyway,
the storms are hitting,
gonna be hanging in the house a bit more than usual,
and
spare time,
I get to work out more.

Now,
some people,
when they work out,
get tired.

They only work out once,
call it a day.

But opportunity is here!
So work out twice.

Tired?
Work out slow,
do it tai chi style.

See if you can work out three or even four times.

I mean,
why not?
You have the time.
Don’t waste a rainy holiday playing vids on the comp.
Don’t just sit there.
Stand up,
walk to the center of the room,
and,
sure as Homer likes donuts,
inspiration will strike you.
first move,
second move,
on your way.

I tell you the truth…
you have nothing better to do.

Okey doke,
while you’re working yourself up to the work out of the year,
let me continue.

I asked for weird work outs,
and the best response I got was from The Rocket.

The Rocket lives in Canada,
and he’s a work out fiend.
Works out 24/7.

And The Rocket said
it wasn’t all that weird,
but…
he worked out on a bus.

Well,
of course!
Who among us hasn’t used their form to fight for balance,
to wiggle for position,
‘on a crowded, swaying bus,
trying to undo the dastardly design
of the evil bus driver,
eh?

But it took The Rocket (real name Robin) to remind us.

Thanks, amigo,
and you win the prize,
a date with Pamela Anderson!

Just pop over to her house this Friday night,
and tell her Al sent you.
Oh,
that lucky girl…
heh.

Okey doke,
let’s talk about which art is the best for working out
on a day like today.

I recommend Pa Kua,
and there is a reason.

It doesn’t take much space,
you can even convert it to fight in the geography
of a furniture clustered room.

You can raise the stance
so your legs don’t get beat to you know what.

Now,
on the Pa Kua course there are three actual arts.

First is the basic art,
really simple,
and you suddenly understand
the only positions you can put your arms in,
and why.
All arts will suddenly get rearranged
so that you can fit them to this data,
a true datum of the true art.

Then,
you get a second art,
an intermediate art,
that will shock the heck out of you.

One concept
and the whole art opens up,
you learn how to swirl the body for internal energy,
and all through one concept.
Makes the art so easy to learn
that you’ve got it within a couple of hours.
True.

Finally,
third art,
based on the eight animals,
and here you get to explore the animals,
learn how to mix and match,
and create a never ending pa kua form,
until the whole world becomes a form,
and you control the whole world,
from a different universe,
the pa kua universe.
(Go find the PKC universe article
on the Monster,
you might have to look for it,
but it describes this other universe,
and invites you into it.)

Okey doke,
I know I just hit you with a sell,
and I usually don’t do that,
I usually just mention a win,
give you a link,
and that’s that.

I mean,
the purpose of the newsletter
is to remind you
not hard sell you.

So I apologize for the hard sell,
but it is a rainy day,
and you need a good work out.
so what the heck.
And,
since it is MLK day,
a day for dreamers of the best kind,
let me sweeten the sell by offering you a deal.
I’ve got some extra disks of the Ten Books.

You order Butterfly PKC today
and I will include the Ten Books.

Just for you
and Martin.

A whole art,
two DVDs and an instructional manual,
and a bonus of ten books
which I wrote as I was breaking through into Matrixing.

Thirty bucks.

Man,
Christmas come again,
eh?
And just think,
if you order now
you‘ll get a whole art before the rain stops!

So here’s the link

The Pa Kua Chang page

Okay,
guys and gals,
time to get going on that work out or four,
have a great time,
and I’ll talk to you later.

Al
:o)

PS–If you want the latest article try googling, Combining Wing Chun and Aikido

I think it is pretty obvious that MLK was talking about ‘working out’ in the following quote…

All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

And don’t forget to visit the Pakua Page…

The Hardest Punch hits the Home Run!

In the martial arts a knock out is a home run. I don’t care if you study karate or tai chi chuan or tae kwon do, if the end result of your punch, or choke, is that the guy does not go unconscious, then you have not hit a home run. In short, you didn’t get the job done.

If you swing and miss with your fist, it is a strike. Enough of these and you’re going to strike out, because the other guy is going to get his chance at bat. And you cannot bet that when he gets to bat he is not going to hit a home run.

If you swing and hit and do no damage, it is a foul ball. If you hit a foul in this manner, you have wasted time, and he is that much closer to taking his own turn at fisting your face. So foul balls are the wrong thing to do in the martial arts.

If you swing a fist and hit him and hurt him, that is a base hit. If he takes a step back you have strategic advantage, you get to take another swing. You have gotten to first base, and you may, depending on further swings of the fist, make it all the way around to home base and knock him out.

If he staggers or shows weakness in any way, then you are solidly on second base. You have hurt him, and lessened the chances of him hitting a home run. Further, you have an advantage, no matter how temporary, and you need to really rock and roll on the guy.

If you swing a fist and knock him down, you have made it to third base. Now you know he is hurt, you see the look in his eyes, you see the awareness that you might be able to knock him all the way out. Knocking somebody down is awful close to knocking him out, and home base is in sight.

Now, the above being said, base hits are fine, but they are not the home run, and there is risk of being put out yourself before you make it home. So you have to make sure you put your opponent out. You have hit him hard, have the hardest punch in the world, that is the only way to be sure.

The truth of the matter is no matter what martial art you are studying, Kenpo or aikido or savate, you have to knock him out. If you don’t, if it goes to a decision, then nothing has really been decided. If there is no knock out then the fighters were only dancing, not really fighting, and neither fighter was able to get the job done, and they better get back to the dojo and study The True Martial Art.

Fighter, Artist, or Enlightened?

Here’s the latest newsletter…Monster Newsletter #267

Enjoy!

It is the most wonderful day in the world,
of that there is no doubt.
It is…
the day of the work out!
I think I’ll just see how many work outs I can do in one day.
I did one at six this am,
after I write this newsletter
I’ll do another one.
Then, after my daily article,
then…
get the idea?

I mean,
structure is good,
you need structure,
but sometimes it is fun to just blow it out.
Break the structure.

Stay up till dawn!
Eat when you are hungry,
and not at the appointed time,
and work out as much as you want.
You know?

Now,
rant done
let me tell you about somebody who really made my day…

Sir, A few weeks ago I received the Master Instructor Course and dove right in. I spent several hours every day reviewing both the print and video. I took lots of notes and would slowly try to work this information into classes with my students. All of my students noticed something different. I asked them to elaborate and for the most part they all said that they felt a renewed effort in me and them. a few made statements like, “I get it now”.

In order to explain this better let me tell you something about me. I am fifty years old, been learning martial arts since the mid seventies starting with three years of Aikido. I have been a Sheriff’s Officer in New Jersey for the past twenty years and a police officer for five years before that. I have worked in my agencies forensics unit, warrant squad and I am now a Sergeant in our Protective services Division where I have been since 2001. I am also on our SERT (SWAT) team as a SWAT Grenadier and entry team member. I am A Less Then Lethal weapons Inst. (OC SPecialty Impact, and Baton) Inst.. I am also a Defensive Tactics Inst.. I am tasked with training over one hundred sworn officers. Every year I conduct several training weeks where street survival, defensive tactics and simulated fire fights using Simunition ammo,( as close to a real gun fight as I can get my guys and dolls without actually shooting them).

Martial arts background is Aikido 1st Dan, Isshyn Rue 1st Dan, A variant of Kempo (no forms just self defense techniques) 3rd Dan. My two passions are Wing Chun and Yang Tai Chi
having started both in 1992.

My wife and I are half owners of a Kickboxing Gym where I train private students.

I am telling you all this to set the foundation for the following statement, I have been wasting a lot of time! I thought I was pretty clever by teaching Tai Chi application first, and then how that application fits the form. This has worked well because it gives the students working techniques quickly as they learn the form. For instance, I charge them with both hands towards their neck, and tell them to raise both arms to lift my hands up and then after they thwarted my momentum, push me hard with both of their palms on my chest. Once they get it, I tell them this is the first posture of the form, Raise Hands. Pretty clever hey? What I was missing was a truly scientific logical format that broke down my favorite arts and made the learning process natural. You have done this for me in the form of Matrixing.

I showed my students the short blocking matrix and asked them to fit Wing Chun blocks which you know are different from Karate (Bong sau, tuan sao etc.) and they were able to do this quickly and it made sense. I am so convinced of matrixing that I have applied it to teaching all subjects to my Sheriff’s Officers and they have commented that my teaching has gotten, “better, more fun, more efficient”.

What really hooked me was the Instant Aikido Program. In 1974 I started three years of Aikido and reached first Dan Rank. I have forgotten more than I remember. When I went through your Aikido Discs., it all came back to me but in a new and exciting light. At the risk of sounding like a big old philosophical slob, I felt lighter as I practiced with my son. My senses seamed to be more acute and I could not stop smiling. It made so much sense and my son who had no Aikido training was awesome like he was an old pro.

In closing, Matrixing has made a positive effect in how I teach both students and Cops. I am sold. I have ripped through the Aikido and Matrix Karate courses and plan to order more including Monkey Kung Fu, Pa Kua and Five Army Tai Chi. Thank you for doing all the work and research that we all should have been doing.

Respectfully, Kurt A. Nelle’

Thank you,
and congratulations
Master Instructor Kurt Nelle’
You not only made my day,
but a lot of other peoples day, too.

Do you guys see it?
Matrixing is nothing but logic and workability.
It destroys mysticism.
It is a common sense that is missing
from all martial arts.

The other thing I might point out
is that it is all about teaching.
If you share you learn,
be it with that annoying brat
of a younger brother,
or hundreds of men who depend on you
for survival.

Kurt perfectly embodies that.

Look,
you know what it is all about?

Martial Artists are protectors.
Some people want to think they are fighters.
but that’s not what the martial arts are about.
Fighters are looking for personal glory
money,
fame,
to be better than somebody else,
to hit somebody for pleasure.

I don’t hold anything against this
for the simple reason
that each individual
is where he is
in evolution.

There are several ways to break this subject down,
but I prefer to think of it like this…

Fighter
Artist
Enlightened.

Three stages.

Oh,
we could separate it lots of other ways,
but this makes sense,
even falls in line with ancient and sacred writings.

A fighter is on the body level.
An artist is on the mind level.
Enlightened is on the spirit level.

Now,
generally speaking,
you can usually tell what level somebody is on.
The fighter is at worst contentious,
at best proud.

The artist is at worst making money,
at best sharing.

The enlightened does what he wants,
his presence is appreciated.

How do you tell which level you are on?

If you are getting bruised during fighting you are on the first level.
If he is getting bruised when you fight you are on the second level.
If nobody is getting bruised…you are on the third level.

And there are other ways to describe this progression of evolution.
Make up your own.
Be mental,
be an artist,
create,
for that is the way to the third level.

Here’s another way,
the fighter is taking lessons,
the artist is giving lessons,
the enlightened is a lesson.

Sure,
there’s going to be some mix and match,
but to progress you must teach,
and,
ultimately,
you must create.
You must get those viewpoints
because they will change you.

So,
we are all on a path,
The True Path of the Martial Way.
The Golden Path.
Following The Art.

Where we are is unique to the individual,
can be estimated fair easy,
once a person is no longer fighting.

And I want to recommend
The Master Instructor Course,
it is the straight goods,
the straight data,
and it changes people.

People read it,
watch it,
and they are changed.
The logic is that correct,
the common sense is that uncommon,
and it moves people to and through the second level and onto the third.

Here’s the link,
and, last thing,

Thanks and well done
Master Instructor Kurt Nelle’

Master Instructor Course!

Now go work out
and change the world
my enlightened friends.

Have a Great Work Out!
Al
:o)

PS–Here’s an article relating to that ultiamte of science fiction, The Lensman Series, and how it relates to martial arts…google, The Effect of the Lensmen on Martial Arts

Education is learning what you didn’t even know you didn’t know.
Daniel J. Boorstin

How to Create the Gunfighter Mentality in Martial Arts!

One of the most important things you can have, if you want to be a good fighter, inside the ring or out, is the gunfighter mentality. The best fighters, like Chuck Lidells and Anderson Silva, have this intuitively in their personality. The losers don’t.

Interestingly enough, the Gunfighter Mentality used to be part and parcel of the classical martial arts. I remember training back in the sixties, and everything we did was geared towards this ability. While there were many factors involved in the death of this principle, Bruce Lee was probably the nail in the coffin.

Bruce Lee added circling and bouncing to the martial arts. The Gunfighter Mentality depends on stillness, being coiled like a snake, and here was this fellow acting like Mohammad Ali, circling and jabbing and destroying the mindset of the Gunfighter. Now Bruce Lee would have won most any fight anyway, but a generation copied him, and they gave up the deadly zen stillness of the Gunfighter.

Now stillness is the heart of the matter, when it comes to Gunfighting in the martial arts, and there are several good reasons or this. There was much interchange between zen concepts and karate in Japan, and people who sat in the zen position for long hours began to see the benefits of sitting, waiting, and cultivating silence. In the silence one could see, could perceive, could empty themselves enough that their intuitive nature would take over.

When one is silent, just sitting, when one does nothing, the senses begin to work better. Try it, just sit in a chair comfortably and do nothing for a while. The world will start to intrude on you, tell you things, become brighter, louder, more obvious.

Once the student begins to appreciate that his perceptions, and thus reactions, will work better, the real work can begin. In the silence we used to corkscrew our stance downward, into the ground, and search for the best set of the leg, the best position to spring from. In the silence we would examine the angle of the hip and the turn of the foot, trying to make every single part of our bodies into totally responsive and explosive mechanisms.

Freestyle matches, instead of bouncing around and wasting energy, would be subtle shifts of weight and edgings forward. Instead of throwing a hundred punches, we would set up to throw one, but every ounce of our might would be instilled in that one punch. And, most important, we walked away from that training different people, aware people, patient people.

The Gunfighter Mentality in the martial arts pretty are much dead, and it is unfortunate. Because I believe that if the fighters of today began developing the Gunfighter Mentality the Martial Arts would take a turn for the better. This might not be good for mixed martial artists in such places as the UFC, however, as the techniques might become too deadly.

Combining Wing Chun and Aikido

Most times arts don’t fit together. You take the circular hands of kenpo and try to put them atop the linear stances of shotokan, and you are going to get an uncoordinated mish mash. Or, the jabs of boxing might fit with wing chun, but the round house power punches don’t fit at all.

And, of course, there are arts that do fit together. You can put aikido together with pa kua chang, but it is going to take discipline and logic to categorize individual techniques. And, this leaves the creator with a problem of how do you teach the beast without confusing.

That all said, one day I was in an Aikido class, I was a beginner in Aikido, though I had seven years of kenpo and karate and a dabble of wing chun. So they asked me to partake in randori. which is the multiman freestyle specific to aikido. And, it was a tragedy.

I didn’t want to give them my punches, karate had taught me to lock down and become immoveable, and the result was that nobody could throw me, and the give and take of the randori exercise broke down. I blame no one, it was mixing apples and peaches, and one could argue they should have been able to make their art work, but I should have been able to work with them. Interestingly, it was what happened after that that became interesting.

Paul, one of the advanced black belts came up to me and wondered where the breakdown had been. Other black belts, lower ones, stayed away from me like a pariah, but he wanted to learn, and that was the mark of an advanced belt.

So I explained about locking down the stance, and we looked at that in conjunction with aikido techniques, and how things could have been different. Nothing was working though, until I asked him if he had ever heard of sticky hands. He hadn’t, and when I showed it to him the lights began to go on.

Wing Chun, you see, doesn’t lock the stances down, and we spent hours figuring out how to get the feet to go fast enough to keep up with the aikido centrifugal action. Slowly, we figured out how the feet were supposed to cross or circle with the slip of the hand. We began to go into advanced techniques, Paul excited because of the lights going on, myself grinning, because I was getting a lesson in Aikido that the other fellows in the school, the lower black belts, would have died for.

It takes logic to put arts together, and very few people succeed. I succeeded wildly, and this because I always seem to run into people that are willing to look a little deeper, and open up a little more. If you think you know it all, if you’re proud, if you look down on somebody, then you will never open your mind and be able to ingest all the wonderful truth flowing around you.

Four Reasons to Teach the Martial Arts

People are always impressed when they find out that I teach the martial arts. Unfortunately, I do not really wish to impress them. A cruel trap here, if they are impressed enough I can teach them, but I don’t really care to impress them.

I remember when I first began the martial arts, this was a long time ago, I was impressed by these quick moving ninjas in pajamas, but what kept me going was that they talked to me. I mean, they were so tough, and yet they took the time to sit down and laugh and joke with a young kid. I always remember this, from the early days, and try to emulate my instructors behavior.

Now, that said, there are really four reasons I teach the martial arts. I am speaking from the instructors viewpoint here, so you will probably find what I say a little different than what you might expect. Still, you might find it enlightening.

One, I teach for the power it gives me. The thing is, I am not speaking about power over people, I am speaking about the power I feel with the health of my body and the clarity of my thought. While comrades grow old and fat, use walkers and oxygen tanks, cannot even bend over to tie their shoes, I run up the stairs, eat what I want, and am as active today as I was forty years ago, when I was but 19.

Two, I teach to empty myself. Here is the truly odd thing, when I tell somebody something, if I have been true in my teachings, then I am suddenly empty, and in that emptiness I learn things. It is almost like I have shoved a book off the shelf, so there is room for another book, except that we are talking about knowledge being shoved out of the mind here.

Three, I teach so that I can get outside myself. I am not the attacker nor the defender, but I am both, outside of them, and this gives me a viewpoint that is almost totally unknown in western society. There simply is no practice, even of teaching, in western society, that gives this viewpoint.

Four, I teach so that I can relate to the world. I see so many people who talk much and say little, or they have understanding of their work, but not of the people in the world around them. Teaching the martial arts forces a commitment to a deeper level of communication, a zen level of communication, an intuitive level of communication that is so much more natural to my beingness and existence.

So, there you have it. Not all teachers have my same reasons, but you can bet they have reasons similar in scope and magnitude. Always know that whether somebody teaches the beautiful and exquisite arcs and forms of shaolin, or the inspiring internal energy of wudan, or combat oriented Krav Maga, or just fun and games like one would find in the mixed martial arts, know that there is a depth of personality that they are pursuing, and that it would behoove you to similarly pursue.