Tag Archives: kenpo

Beating Up a Crowd of People!

Have you ever wondered what you would do

if you were caught, or targeted, by a mob?

This is actually not an inconceivable situation

considering the antics of such as BLM or Antifa,

In 2020 these groups caused:

$2 billion in damages

rioted in 140 cities

caused the injury of 2000 cops

resulted in the deaths of 25 Americans.

There weren’t any congressional hearings on this

nor any real reporting from the media,

but these are the figures

as far as I have been able to figure.

And it is a distinct possibility

that such riots could happen again.

So,

the question…

what would you do if you were caught up in, 

and especially targeted by

a mob of crazy people?

I took Aikido in the early seventies,

and I was fascinated by the videos

of people doing multiman combat.

I also had many situations during karate classes

where we would fight multiple attackers.

Eventually, basing the material on Aikido

and on certain karate concepts,

I filmed the ‘Matrix Aikido’ course.

This is a great course, 

as it is based on concept

and not memorizing endless techniques.

One day I was visiting one of my student’s classes.

There were about 20 young men (age 18-25) in the class.

I was asked many questions,

and the subject of fighting large numbers of people 

was brought up,

and the students’ challenged some of my assertions.

‘Okay,’ I said.

‘let’s see if I can make my theories work.’

I always remember the surprise on their faces,

they asked me how many of the students

should attempt to lay hands on me

I said, ‘Everybody.’

Man, they were blinking,

then they looked at each other and grinned,

and the melee was on.

It was some ten minutes

before anybody laid a hand on me,

and I will tell you EXACTLY what I did.

Mind you,

I was theorizing and training in pure concepts at the time.

First,

there are three directions

that a punch will take

generally speaking,

and this tended to hold true

for my situation.

First,

 the punch might hit you.

Second,

if you move back,

it will pass in front of you.

Third,

if you move forward,

it will pass behind you.

There were a few kicks,

but I just used the same theory,

but adapted it for kicks.

I then attacked.

Yep,

you heard me right,

I went forward,

into the mass of twenty men.

They were trying to create enough room

so they could punch (kick) me.

This moved them away from each other

just enough so I could slip between.

I wouldn’t always recommend a charge,

but we were in a big park

and I had plenty of room to maneuver.

As they turned to chase me

they were now in each other’s way.

As I recall,

Aikido holds that three people

is the worst scenario for people attacking you

because they have enough room.

More than three and they get in each other’s way.

Now I had only two concepts in mind.

I moved in and grabbed their bodies and ‘danced’ with them

and flung them away.

Or,

I slowed down as the punch came in

pushed their punch across their body

then they were tangled and I pushed them away.

And I kept throwing them in front of each other 

At all times I went forward.

This gave me the initiative.

I never went backwards.

Everybody chased me

and was constantly having to step around bodies.

It was one of the easiest fights I had ever had.

Now,

the only other thing of interest in this

is that when I started I noticed one person looking at me.

I knew he was going to be the one to get me.

I made it my strategy to always avoid him.

But at the end,

he got close and tagged me in the back with a punch.

Now,

what I did was that simple.

It was not complex.

If I had tried complex maneuvers

they would have got me in the beginning.

Though, as I progressed

and figured things out,

I did mix in specific techniques,

appropriate to the ‘punch in front or punch in back’

that I was conceptualizing.

And,

I knew what I was doing 

would hold true for clubs and such.

It might even hold true for firearms,

but there would be considerable limits

on what I could do in that situation.

Which brings us to the Antifa/BLM riots.

Buildings burning,

people with guns

and

Kyle Rittenhouse

Kyle wasn’t trained in the martial arts,

he was only trying to get away,

and only the fact that he had a gun 

enabled him to do so.

If he tried to get away and hadn’t had a gun

he likely would have been killed,

at least severely maimed.

If he hadn’t had a gun,

of course,

he might not even have been attacked.

But that is a probability I wouldn’t bet on.

So,

imagine yourself in that situation.

Do you understand the concepts I outlined,

always attacking,

stepping in front of or behind the strike,

how to adapt it to kicks

or to weapons like clubs or even swords.

What is most interesting is seeing how many techniques

you can come up with from the 

‘punch in front, punch behind’ concept.

This will define an entire martial art.

It will be logical,

and you should avoid poser techniques.

And,

if you find fault with my method,

or think it won’t work,

what can you come up with?

Anyway,

have fun with this.

And thanks to Kumar for asking.

Here is the link to Matrix Aikido

where I give a seminar and show

the actual conceptualizing of Aikido.

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-aikido/

Have a great work out!

Al

And don’t forget to check out the interview

BTW

I’ve got nothing but five star reviews on 

The Science of Government.

It’s really nothing more than applying matrixing to politics.

Matrixing + Politics = Sanity

I told you matrixing works with anything.

Here’s the link…

How to Fix Karate! (volumes one and two)

volume one is at

And volume two is at…

A New Master Instructor!

And a new video!

Good morning!

And congratulations to 

Master Instructor Craig Palenzuela

Here’s part of Craig’s win from doing the course…

-Thank you for writing this! I found this easy to follow and understand. I’m very happy I took a chance this.

-This course was a win! The biggest win I had in this course is it solidified for me that I have been right all along in my methods than others “more experienced” because of a “rank.”

-The reality is, a lot of the material I already knew. However I never had anyone explain it in a technical and mechanical way. The examples of the 4 powers and the 6 tools to me were damn near mind blowing. It was the smack on the forehead “oh yeah that’s right” moment.

It cleaned up a lot of the “clutter”. Now, as I mentioned a lot of this material I knew. I was very fortunate to train with Master John Wesley Shepherd who was trained by the late GM Sherman Harrell who was directly trained by GM Tatsuo Shimabukuru, the founder of Isshinryu. He used to explain things in a similar fashion. Sadly, he was never around enough and we were mostly taught by his big brother Billy who is an excellent practitioner but as a teacher………. you get the idea.

We spent a lot of the times teaching ourselves. Because of this, maybe we ourselves stumbled onto these lessons when you combined grown men from different occupations and backgrounds. Fast forward years later after our school closed down, I begin training in Escrima de Cuerdas, an art founded by a simple carpenter the late GM Liborio Heyrosa who couldn’t read or write. He was subsequently trained directly by the late GM Venancio Anciong Bacon (founder of Balintawak) and Nene Rosales a famous Filipino fencer.

– It (this course) helped me tremendously because regardless that the Philippines is a former U.S. Commonwealth, sometimes there is a bit of a language barrier. Some of these lessons did not translate. Your lessons created the bridge. Now everything made sense. The part that also helped tremendously was as we were all taught that it should be one continuous motion or no wasted motion but you explained it and demonstrated in a way that made sense…

The other thing that opened my eyes the most was the body testing. In Isshinryu for us this is common…….when performing Sanchin. I’ve never seen this done while throwing a basic straight punch. Heck, I never even thought of it myself. This to me is the highlight of the read/videos. I’m sure some will say I’m nuts but that’s what it was to me. I can’t wait to try this on everything but it also helped to perfect every technique within a kata. I now see each movement as unique.

Can’t wait to download the Matrix Karate Course! And also, thank you!

Thank you, Craig.

And well done.

Interestingly,

Craig says he knew a lot of the material before,

he is exactly the SECOND person who has said this about the course.

This is after me selling the course for 15 years.

what is of interest is that Craig says

they ‘spent a lot of time teaching ourselves.’

This is actually one of the reasons I figured this out.

My instructor hardly ever said anything,

and in the silence I had to figure things out.

My father was an engineer

and I was raised with an eye towards physics and mechanics,

and that is probably my secret.

You see the martial arts have been handed down

mostly through oral tradition,

and that is a fine way to build up mysticism.

The result is teachers use examples that are unique to their culture,

and fail to impart the actual mechanics and physics of the art.

Anyway,

Again,

congrats to Craig,

and well done.

Now,

thank you to those who have purchased the book courses on Amazon.

I’ve got two of them up right now,

How to Fix Karate

and

The Shaolin Butterfly.

These are books,

but with links to the videos from the actual courses included.

This is a real step forward for saving money,

and for getting the full course.

And,

I’ve included a video this week.

I’ve got hundreds of these snippets. 

I once sold them as a course which six whole people purchased.

So I’ll probably pop them into the newsletter,

won’t be any order,

but they’re a lot of fun,

and pretty educational.

So have fun and enjoy,

and if you like these snippets make sure

you subscribe to the blog at MonsterMartialArts.

(upper right hand corner of the page)

Here you go…

HAVE A GREAT WORK OUT!

Al

And don’t forget to check out the interview

BTW

I’ve got nothing but five star reviews on 

The Science of Government.

It’s really nothing more than applying matrixing to politics.

Matrixing + Politics = Sanity

I told you matrixing works with anything.

Here’s the link…

How to Fix Karate! (volumes one and two)

volume one is at

And volume two is at…

How to Fix Karate (Volume Two)!

Zowie! Volume 2 of how to Fix Karate is out!

The whole book is over 400 pages,

around a thousand graphics,

over 50,000 words.

So I had to cut it in two. Amazon has a lot of trouble

with a book that size.

And, the cost for a book that size becomes exorbitant.

But…

volume one is at

And volume two is at…

I will be coming out with hard cover versions.

And thanks to all who have purchased volume one.

Any five star reviews would be appreciated.

Okay, 

let’s talk.

Got an email the other day,

and we were talking about force and flow.

And the concept of flow as more than just motion came up.

So,

let me explain.

Flow is motion

force is no motion.

This is not quite right,

of course.

force is going to be when two flows collide

and create other motion.

But it all becomes martial pertinent when you say

‘If the force is greater flow it,

if the flow is greater force it.’

Then you can consider force as no motion,

but it is really the moment when flow changes.

But this is all complicated when you take the mind into account.

flow is motion

emotion is motion inside the head.

read that again.

Make sure you understand it.

The point is that you need to rid your head of emotion

if you want to perceive motion correctly.

Emotion can slant your perception of motion.

But now things get interesting.

The body is a motor.

It can have motion.

But the mind just sits in the head,

or thereabout,

and it can create emotion outside the body.

(Actually, it’s not the mind,

it is the spirit, 

the mind is just a bunch of memory)

Let me explain.

Joe Blow gets emotion,

there’s all this anger running around inside his head.

With most humans the anger can get a little outside the head.

You can feel when somebody is angry.

It’s just…’in the air.’

But once somebody can control emotion,

he becomes more able to project emotion.

Mind you,

he doesn’t project willy nilly,

like a person out of control,

he projects with intention,

and you can fill the air with emotion.

You can stop people coming at you with emotion,

and you can control people with this kind of emotion.

When you are strong enough,

in control enough,

to project emotion,

it doesn’t feel like emotion.

It feels like…flow.

It is like an actual swirling in the air.

This is because it is not anger.

It is not out of control baby emotion,

it is full grown emotion moved around by…intention.

Your will.

Your desire to make things happen 

on a much higher level

than normal people are aware of.

So this is what is in my mind

when I speak of force, flow, emotion, and that sort of thing.

If you practice karate

or other classical arts

long and hard enough,

this all becomes second nature.

Matrixing,

of course,

will speed up your growth of these abilities.

It is just logical and makes sense,

and the concepts of the martial arts are easier to understand.

Here’s the links for the two volumes of

How to Fix Karate!

volume one is at

And volume two is at…

HAVE A GREAT WORK OUT!

Al

And don’t forget to check out the interview

BTW

I’ve got nothing but five star reviews on 

The Science of Government.

It’s really nothing more than applying matrixing to politics.

Matrixing + Politics = Sanity

I told you matrixing works with anything.

Here’s the link…

All the Styles of Karate!

What’s with all the different styles of karate?

I get asked about styles every once in a while,

and this is a tricky question.

It’s tricky because there are no styles.

Oh, there is the appearance of styles, especially for a beginner,

but a kick is a kick,

a punch is a punch,

and they can be fixed with an accurate application of physics.

So what are all these ‘styles?’

They are different methods for becoming expert…

and beyond.

Up to the point of expert a person is often enamored

with styles and differences.

Past expert,

if he really is an expert,

he realizes that no art is better or worse,

there is only better or worse training.

There is only better or worse application of the self to training.

Methods,

or what we call ‘styles,’

are just the means by which we get to expert.

Or beyond.

This idea,

that there are no styles,

is mentioned by old masters,

especially in Okinawa before Karate was exported,

Kanken Toyama states it directly.

Also, Jesse Enkamp has a nice episode on the subject.

One time I was talking to my instructor,

Bob Babich,

He had just left the Korean Karate Association

and was no longer allowed to use the term ‘Kang Duk Won,’ 

so he changed the name to Kwon Bup.

I asked him what Kwon Bup meant.

He had a book on his coffee table,

written in Korean,

which language he couldn’t speak or read.

He pointed at the book and said that his instructor gave it to him

and that the title was ‘Kwon Bup.’

Which means ‘Fist Method.’

So he decided to relabel his art ‘Kwon Bup.’

I asked him what the difference was between ‘Do,’ ‘The Way,’

and a method.

He shrugged and said,

“Is there one?”

He didn’t care about organizations (politics)

or styles or labels…

he just cared about the most efficient way to learn the art.

I hope that illustrates what i’ve said here.

Here’s the obligatory ad…

Blinding Steel!

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/3a-blinding-steel-matrixing-weapons/

Because your opponent will probably have a weapon!

Okay, everybody,

summer is around the corner, so start now!

HAVE A GREAT WORK OUT!

Al

And don’t forget to check out the interview

BTW

I’ve got nothing but five star reviews on 

The Science of Government.

It’s really nothing more than applying matrixing to politics.

Matrixing + Politics = Sanity

I told you matrixing works with anything.

Here’s the link…

Little Karate Things

Good morning!

It really is.

I don’t have a central theme today,

so just let me give you a couple of things

that I have been thinking about 

in the recent past.

.

Emptiness.

I first began to understand emptiness

when I realized that I had to relax totally, 

being in one position,

then I had to be in another position.

I didn’t move from within the body,

I moved from without the body.

I realized this way back in Kenpo days (1967-68)

.

Who stops you.

Two people can stop you.

Either yourself,

or somebody else.

But for somebody else to stop you

you have to let them.

You do not move the hips 

You move the legs,

and the legs move the hips.

This is the secret of ‘pulsing power.’

You push with the legs,

turn the hips,

strike.

.

When a sniper shoots

he relaxes,

and lets his breath out.

When the breath is totally gone,

everything will be still.

In that stillness

he should make the crook of the finger

the smallest thing in the universe.

This is the secret of the martial arts.

.

There is motion

easily seen,

there is emotion

easily felt.

The secret is to see the motion

and ignore the emotion.

To do this,

however,

you must negate emotion within yourself.

.

Anybody who approaches you wants something.

When you approach somebody you want something.

.

And,

let me give you a bigger slice of thought.

One of the most important things I ever read,

came out of a paper written on yoga (raja?)

back in the twenties.

The writer said a human being is encased in sheathes.

There is an emotional sheath.

There are cultural sheathes.

There are sheathes for beliefs,

for education and work and what people tell you…

and so on.

He mentioned several specific sheathes,

and I understood that these sheathes were the filters

through which I viewed the world.

I had understood something of the concept previously,

but this presentation was unique

made me look at the world differently,

and I started doing karate (and the martial arts) 

with the idea of breaking sheathes,

of destroying those things which surrounded me

made me what I am

and imprisoned me.

I found this paper on Gutenburg,

but I sure don’t remember anything more about it.

.

Here’s the obligatory ad…

Matrix Kenjutsu

http://monstermartialarts.com/matrixing-kenjutsu/

When you fill the space around you with weapon,

you extend your awareness into that space

and become a bigger person.

.

A thanks to Kumar this newsletter.

I’ll try not to be such a slackard after this. ;o)

And…everybody…

HAVE A GREAT WORK OUT!

Al

And don’t forget to check out the interview

BTW

I’ve got nothing but five star reviews on 

The Science of Government.

It’s really nothing more than applying matrixing to politics.

Matrixing + Politics = Sanity

I told you matrixing works with anything.

Here’s the link…

Newsletter 1038

13 Reasons People Degrade the Martial Arts

You survived Thanksgiving!

And now it’s almost time for Christmas,

or as I call it,

HanaKwanMass!

Happy HanaKwanMass!

Okay, let’s talk about people who degrade the martial arts.

I’m not talking about people outside the martial arts,

we all know they are idiots,

talking about something they know nothing about.

I’m talking about people inside the martial arts.

People who say things like,

or hold the opinion that…

My art is better than your art.

That art sucks cause it wouldn’t work in the ring.

and,

of course,

the dreaded…

IT’S A MCDOJO!

So I was just sitting around

and popped out 13 quick reasons

why these people say bad things about the arts,

or other martial arts.

Here they are:

  1. people who have not studied it completely
  2. people who have not been able to make it work
  3. people who received inadequate training
  4. people who received an incorrect form of the art
  5. people listen to other people and aren’t able to think critically about what they hear
  6. people of low character (negative people)
  7. people who have been trained/influenced by negative people
  8. people who think you have to beat somebody up (joy of combat)
  9. people who have studied a little and think they know something
  10. people who have a need to be ‘the’ authority
  11. people who practice putting other people down to make themselves ‘bigger’
  12. people who are general malcontents (disgruntled)
  13. people who are ignorant and can’t think

Of course,

some of these reasons overlap,

and there are doubtless more reasons,

but they boil down to one basic thing.

People who speak ill

of others, of other arts,

are ignorant.

Go on,

read the list again

and you will find that common denominator.

Haven’t been trained enough so they ignorant…

haven’t gotten a true version of the art so they are ignorant…

can’t make it work so they are definitely ignorant.

Now,

what do you do about ignorant people?

What’s that old saying?

You can’t live with them but you can’t kill them.

So the choices you have are two,

and only two.

First,

if they can be educated

you can educate them.

Sit down, talk with them,

show them where they are wrong.

This one,

quite honestly,

doesn’t work.

First,

you are talking to somebody who is so ignorant 

they are holding on to their ignorance like it was a banner.

Here’s the thinking behind that:

I’m right and if you try to educate me

then you are attacking my rightness and I will kill you.

Go on, 

read that again.

If you try to smarten me I’ll hurt you.

That’s a mantra for idiots,

and yet it is prevalent in the world.

It is probably,

if you think about it,

political rule number one.

But don’t get me started on government.

So,

the first solution,

while it is the preferred,

is only rarely able to be applied.

And that leaves us with rule number two.

Now,

I’m going to speak French here,

just to let the easily offended know,

so they can plug up their ears.

But,

my personal solution,

the way I get through life while surrounded by idiots is

Stay away from assholes.

There it is,

I think this is the first time in over a thousand newsletters

that I have used bad language.

Sorry.

But we can transcribe that to English…

STAY AWAY FROM IDIOTS!

Simply,

if you rub elbows with idiots,

with the truly ignorant,

you risk getting their ignorance all over you.

You will get involved in all sorts of unpleasantness

as they hang on to their ignorant ‘rightness’

and try to hurt you.

Now,

why do I speak of this here?

First,

because people should learn how to survive

the stupidity of this world.

Second,

there might be an ignorant person reading this.

Right now.

And I am really hoping

that they scratch their head,

wonder if I could actually be talking about them,

and perhaps even start the arduous journey

to the land of critical thinking.

Okay,

obligatory ad here,

close your eyes and go nah nah nah

while reading…

So,

it’s HanaKwanMass

everybody deserves a present,

so here’s my present to you…

Purchase the download version of

Rolling Fists

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/rolling-fists/

I will give you

absolutely free

the Blinding Steel course.

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/3a-blinding-steel-matrixing-weapons/

Just buy one,

email me at aganzul@gmail.com

and tell me you want the rolling fists/blinding steel deal.

I will then email you the link for the second course.

Easy peasy.

And there you go…

HANAKWANMASS!

And have a great work out!

Al

And don’t forget to check out the interview

BTW

I’ve got nothing but five star reviews on 

The Science of Government.

It’s really nothing more than applying matrixing to politics.

Matrixing + Politics = Sanity

I told you matrixing works with anything.

Here’s the link…

The Formula for Power in the Martial Arts!

Newsletter 1012 ~ sign up here

Good morning!

The Formula for Power in the Martial Arts!

Good morning!

Happy Mother’s Day!

I thought you might like to look at

formulas in the martial arts today.

This is actually pretty hefty stuff,

and you might want to have a dictionary at hand,

especially when I talk about things like

mass, energy, and other physics terms.

First,

energy is the capacity for work.

Work is the amount of weight lifted.

So the deeper the stance,

the more weight your muscles feel.

The more weight you feel,

the harder you work.

The harder you work,

the stronger you get.

This strength is channeled to the tan tien

and then to the rest of the body.

Second,

when practicing,

I move slow.

Moving slowly increases the amount of time

I am lifting the weight of my body.

Thus, I am lifting more,

thus, I am getting stronger.

Third,

when doing forms,

I use dynamic tension.

Dynamic tension is when you use

muscles against muscles,

and even

muscles against themselves.

Fourth,

when doing applications

I increase speed,

because 

speed times mass increases the mass.

100 pounds of punch at one second

becomes 200 pounds of punch at 2 seconds.

And so on.

Fifth,

I try to make sure my body is properly aligned.

This creates a connection from the fist to the planet,

or the technique to the planet,

so when I hit somebody,

it actually feels like I am hitting them with the planet.

And when I get hit,

it feels like they are hitting the planet.

Sixth,

I try to use CBM

‘Coordinated Body Motion,’

all body parts move at the same time

starting at the same time

ending at the same time,

contributing appropriate to their

size, mass, angle, and so on.

Seventh,

I try to CBM all the formulas.

Putting them together when appropriate,

focusing on specific formulas when appropriate,

and so on.

And,

of course,

I practice all the time.

The more I practice

the more these formulas and concepts work.

So that’s it.

Oh,

there are lots of other formulas in Matrixing.

But these are pretty specific to action and movement.

And they should help you

when you analyze what you are doing and why.

They should really make your art POP!

Now,

here’s the thing…

I learned the first formula from doing Karate

I learned the second formula from doing Tai Chi Chuan.

I learned the third formula from doing Pan Gai Noon.

I learned the fourth formula from Karate.

And so on.

So you have to study a lot of different arts

to get all this.

You know what?

Evolution of an Art has three arts on it.

Pan Gai Noon

Kang Duk Won

Kwon Bup

It’s a good place to start.

The price of a night on the town

and it will feed your mind and spirit for years.

It will certainly help you make serious inroads

into the formulas I listed here.

Here’s the link…

Evolution of an Art!

Now,

go get your mommy some flowers!

And have a great work out!

Al

Evolution of an Art!

BTW ~ have you read my novel…Monkeyland?

.

Modifying Your Education in the Martial Arts with Matrixing

Newsletter 989

The Odd Effects of Matrixing in the Martial Arts

Started matrixing back in the 80s.
Been a long time.
Formalized it around 2007.
Taught a lot of people,
but here’s the thing…
matrixing is VERY subtle.

You do the first courses,
maybe you get a blast of realization,
especially if you’ve spent some time in the arts,
have a good database that needs to be organized.
Then the real work starts.
Time.

Time passes
and the seeds gestate within.
The initial blast of logic fades a bit,
but it keeps working.
Sometimes you don’t realize it
but you are looking at the world differently.
logically.
Life becomes smoother.
things other than the arts make sense,
are made logical by the matrixing going on inside you.

When you go to school
you are told to shut up and learn.
It’s all behavior modification.
Teachers can’t control the classes
unless they can control the masses.
So shut up and do your work.
Doesn’t matter that the work isn’t logical,
doesn’t have much to do with life.
Shut up and do your work.

They even go after you after school.
Do your homework.
No rest.
Get trained (modified)
so you can be a cog in a factory.

And here’s the thing…
there isn’t much real learning.
Mostly,
it’s memorizing.
When was the battle of Bull Run.
Who cares.
Memorize that algebraic function.
Even though you will never use it in life.

And,
when a lot of people graduate
they are in one of two modes…
a robot ready to man a desk somewhere…
and learning sucks.

Yeah,
school teaches you that learning can be boring,
meaningless and stupid.
So people come out of school thinking that learning sucks.
I did.
And I’d probably still think that learning sucks,
if it wasn’’ for martial arts…
and then matrixing.

There are things in school,
underneath all the drivel,
that do mean something.
Learning how to write,
what all that grammar stuff is,
is incredible.
But they don’t spend a lot of time on that.
Better to modify your behavior.

Underneath that algebra,
is a whole method of learning and analysis
and critical thinking…
but they slide over that quick,
too hard to explain.

And speaking of critical thinking…
schools don’t go anywhere near that.
Kids might start thinking for themselves,
and then where would the behavior modifiers be?

I started learning when it came to the martial arts.
I wanted to understand it.
I wanted to figure it out.
And I started thinking.
I started analyzing it,
being critical in my thought concerning it.
I started doing things that school never prepared me for,
and never wanted me to do.

Matrixing.
A quick way to line up all the data,
to make sense of it
and apply it.
And the carefully arranged rigidity of my mind
started to shatter.

Unfortunately,
it doesn’t work that way for everybody.

I was lucky,
had a couple of good schools,
an instructor who didn’t say much,
but could do a lot,
but who wanted us to figure it out for ourselves.

I remember once,
when a couple of the students went to Bob (my instructor).
They showed him two techniques
and asked him which was better.
He said,
‘I don’t know.’
But it was obvious he knew!
But it was also obvious he wanted to think for ourselves,
to make up our own minds.
To look at the techniques,
try them out,
mix them up,
analyze them,
synthesize them,
and…
understand them.

That is something that almost no teacher,
in todays schools,
martial arts or otherwise,
wants you to do.

No critical thinking for you…
you have to stay a bozo.

Okay,
I’ve ranted enough,
and it’s up to you.
Be a carefully crafted
‘do what I say’ person,
or start looking.
Get critical,
get analytical,
start matrixing,
look for understanding,
and,
here’s the real deal…
start having some fun.

Guaranteed,
when you finally figure out what I’m saying
you’ll understand something that teachers may talk about
but don’t know how to make happen…
fun.

Here’s some real fun…

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-karate/

Hey,
hapy vets day to you!
and have a great work out!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-karate/

Awarding a Mixed Martial Artist a Black Belt

Newsletter 986

The Interesting Thing About Black Belts

I’ve written often about
what a black belt is,
what the requirements should be,
and so on.
Let me say some unpleasant things here.

I volunteered my time
at a local martial arts school.
One night I was sitting with a half dozen MMA instructors,
and the talk turned to black belts.
One fellow had 22 years experience,
but was not a black belt.
Had no plans for testing.
Was quite happy to be a lower belt.
The other fellows accepted this as normal,
but it really made me think.

The fellow had the qualifications,
he knew what he was doing,
but there was some sort of mystique
concerning the longer you wait the better you are.

I asked one of the fellows later
about his promotion to black belt.
He said he had studied for some 20 years,
and suddenly realized that he wasn’t going to get any better.
Oh, he would get smarter,
pick up a few more sly tricks,
but he was now descending,
his body getting older
faster than he could learn.
So he went to the school owner
and told him that he wasn’t getting any better
so he better get his black belt while he was still any good.
He was given his black belt.

Now,
I’ve given you the data,
and maybe you’ve read some of my writing
about a black belt being ‘expert,’
so what does all this tell you?

To me it says that there is too much emphasis
placed on winning,
and not enough on structuring MMA
so that people can be properly evaluated.
That in the MMA (and this includes many brands of Jujitsu)
people are more concerned with who they can beat,
rather than mastering the distinct body of knowledge
that MMA is.
And this is what makes MMA a sport rather than an art.

Look,
being a sport is not bad.
It just sounds bad here because
it is coming through the filter of Al Case
who promotes art as best.

But,
really,
it is all up to you.

Interestingly,
I approached the head of the school I was volunteering at.
I suggested we categorize techniques,
make it easier to teach,
make the body of knowledge succinct and precise
so that we would better teach it.
He agreed,
and it actually fit into his plans for the school,
but every time we started to do something
he found an excuse,
disappeared,
changed the complexion of our meetings,
and so on.

As a sports man
he was unable to become an artist.
And here’s the funny thing,
he had trained in many of the classical arts,
he knew where I was coming from,
even agreed that I was right,
but at heart,
in the core of him,
he was a believer that might makes right,
that beating people up
was more important than teaching them methods
that would create distinct methods resulting in art,
the ability to classify ability,
and so on.

Simply,
it was more important to win a tournament,
than to do an art.

Well,
I’ll leave you fellows and gals
to figure out the worth of what I have said here.

In the meantime,
one of the most exact studies I have done
on what ranking and abililties are
was in the Outlaw Karate book.

Here is the Amazon page for it…

OUTLAW KARATE

There is a complete art in it,
complete with tests,
but see if you agree with how I analyze belt rankings.

Have a great work out!

Al

Finding Your Soul Through the Martial Arts

Newsletter 983

The Windows to the Soul of the Martial Arts

I’ve talked about where you put your eyes before.
So let me say it again,
and give you a rather phenomenal martial arts drill.

My first school,
kenpo,
held the belief that you should focus on the chest,
develop peripheral vision when fighting.

My second school,
kang duk won korean karate,
was of a similar opinion.
My instructor,
the best martial artist I have ever known,
took it a step further.
‘Don’t look at the eyes,’
he said.
‘They will fool you.’

Well,
both schools were wrong.
Even the best martial artist I have ever known was wrong.

The eyes are the windows to a man’s soul.
The eyes are nothing but devices.
‘binoculars’ for the spirit that drives a man to look through.
What does the looking is the ‘I am.’
The spirit.
Who you really are.

I find it absolutely fascinating
that so many martial artists will hold to caveman theories
of watching the body,
and refuse to see who they really are.

So,
I get newbies pretty regularly,
and I teach them martial arts,
and I teach them to freestyle.
Shortly after they begin freestyle
I always do the following drill.

I have them stand with their back to the wall.
I tell them to look me in the eyes.
They are always staring away,
looking elsewhere,
it has become hard for man to look his fellow man in the eyes.
Used to be easy.
I met old timers and that is all they did.
Eye to eye,
a firm handshake seals the deal,
an honest day’s work,
that sort of thing.

So I have this fellow standing back to the wall,
I make sure he is looking at me,
and I punch him.
The first dozen punches are easy.
I swing roundhouses.
I punch fast,
but they are easy to see.
Frequently the student will close his eyes.
I do this easy method until he is able to keep his eyes open.
Then I speed up.
I spin and back fist,
I throw an occasional kick,
I have good control,
but the student’s eyes usually open up
as I put a little steam on the strikes.

He blocks them all.

That’s right.
the newbie student blocks virtually
EVERYTHING
I throw.

Why?
Because open eyes create intuition.

If a guy is looking away he is not seeing
and he might as well be unconscious.

If his eyes are open,
if the spirit of the man is actually watching,
there is no limit to what he can do.

From that point on I can teach him anything.
He will learn everything.
And easily.
And if he doesn’t,
I put him to the wall
and open his eyes again.

But…
don’t believe me.
Do it for yourself.
Put some bozo back to the wall,
go slow throw lazy rounders
and make sure he is watching,
that he doesn’t go to sleep with his eyes open.
Guaranteed,
you will have a fast learning student
who will staring looking at the world
in open eyed wonder.

This little drill has been brought to you
by the same fellow who gave you Matrix Karate

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-karate/

The totally scientific martial art
that opens eyes everywhere
and makes all martial arts quick and simple to learn.

Have a great work out!

Al

A WIN!