I walked into the Kumite Class and everybody was putting on pads. Shin pads, arm pads, one guy was even figuring out how to wear a pad around his whole torso?
“What’s this?” I asked.
“Latest thing,” the instructor told me. “Wear these and you won’t get hurt.”
Now, this was weird, because we didn’t have any problem with getting hurt. We took a few bruises, split a lip,but nobody was getting hurt. So this was going to stop us from something that wasn’t happening. Curiouser and curiouser.
So, I put them on, and used them, and I found out that people got hurt. In fact, they got hurt more. Because people had pads on their fists they figured they had to hit harder to make effect. We actually had a lot more injuries with pads than without. Simply, we weren’t as careful, and we weren’t trying to cultivate control because, doggone it, loss of control meant you could get hurt.
And here’s something interesting to think about. Boxers use big old gloves, and people get brain damaged and killed. I think over a 100 boxers were killed in the ring last century, and it is continuing.
But, MMA, which uses skinny, little gloves, has no deaths.
So less padding causes greater control. And greater control causes more art.
But, forget that, and just remember something my instructor told me after class. You see, I talked to him, told him how I felt, and he told me, “We can sell these to every kid. The parents, you see, they don’t want their kids to get hurt.”
Money. Profit. Death of Art.
Well, disagree or not…I know there will be a lot of opinions out there…but I think the art died a little in Kumite class that day. Drop by Monster Martial Arts for some grest articles, and the best (and most economical) martial arts method in the world.