Violence is the Answer?

I am reading a book now that makes some interesting points about self-defence. The book does not really show any techniques but discusses a lot about principles for handling the question of self-defence.

I know that principles are important and we can drown ourselves in it. Still at the end of the day you need a way to deliver the principles. This is where techniques come in. Love em or hate em you cannot do without them unless you can hit someone without touching them. Maybe some of us can do that. I certainly can’t. So don’t go looking for me if you want to learn the no-touch stuff.

The book doesn’t show techniques. So I thought I would check out what the author would regard as effective applications to shut down an attacker. Imagine my surprise when some of the techniques he demonstrated are basically stuff I see in traditional martial arts!

For example, he showed a forearm attack using ulna bone right in the attacker’s throat. This is followed by an elbow strike. The forearm attack is a technique found in Grandmaster Wei Shuren’s Tai Chi, Dong style Tai Chi, old style Wing Chun, Bak Mei, Lung Ying and gawd knows how many other styles!!!

I’ll say this much about the book. A brisk read though sometimes it feels like reading the same main point over and over again. But good points. Great stories.

The real life stories told are heart warming. How about the failures? Yes, stories of failures are analyzed. But then hindsight is 20/20.

You can even buy a short online course. Or if so inclined get the whole she-bang at another website where the bread and butter range of courses are offered. I am sure it can improve your knowledge and help an intermediate level and above student to improve. But for a total beginner? I have no idea.

What I do know from my own training and teaching is this. I can make something sound simple, look simple and is actually simple to do. But the training I put in to make the techniques simple, well that’s another story. I can tell you to move this way, move that way, do this technique, go for this target, then that target but until you put in a lot of practice it is not as easy as you think.

I wish there was a magic pill I can swallow and acquire super self-defence skills or slap on a pair of Augmented Reality goggles and turn on the software to pick up skills fast, and who knows, we may get there someday with all these rapid developments in IT. But until then you still have to keep training if you really want to be good at using combat techniques. Just ask my student – last week he had another realization – that what I was teaching him was much more complicated than he initially thought. I didn’t tell him that there are more complicated stuff along the way but hey, one step at a time.

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