The promise 1 make to all my students of self defence is that you will not need to know as many moves as Bruce Lcc to survive. Just as you only need to know a few fundamentals about movement and stance so you only need to learn a few basic defences and attacks.
I feel that it is better to be the master of few routines than a novice at many. As time passes you can always add extra weapons to your armory, should you feel the need.
If I look back on most of my fights I can remember that I have used pretty much the same shots, throws and grapples to finish the action. It might make me a boring fighter and I might be predictable in the ring but I haven't lost yet.
In street fighting, style is most definitely secondary to effectiveness. To bccomc effective in anything you must practise. This means that after you have read this book you must practise the routines. Study the pictures which take you through the techniques and then do them.
You will master a new move much faster if you try to execute it more slowly at first. Consider how you are moving in relation to the pictures and correct yourself as your sensei would if you were at a lesson. As you begin to grasp the move add power and speed.
Take your training seriously but enjoy it. When you begin to feel a little tired try focusing your mind on why you are training Remember that it is to protect yourself against thugs and you will find a new supply of energy (rom within. This technique works especially well if you have a mind's eye image of your attacker to keep punching.
Focus is a large part of the martial arts. It's what warriors who put power in their blows have attained. For example if you arc grabbed by an assailant you shouldn't just push him away. You should focus power, indignation, aggression. surprise, anger and whatever else you can muster AND aim to throw him off you.
With focus you really can do this. Your attacker will be so surprised that you didn't just humbly succumb, he'll seriously reconsider whether you are worth bothering with. You have created time to make your escape or prepare your counter attack.
The mental portrait of a Samurai warrior is not such a clinched one to have for your own fighting focus. When you practise your routines imagine that you arc that warrior and really project force into your movements. If you ever do find yourself facing up to real conflict then this powerful mind's eye picture will give you confidence. After all, on your own you could lose a fight but not with a Samurai to help you. Samurai never lost, they fought until victor or vanquished and the spirits of the dead ones would pursue the case.
As you and your Samurai practise kicking and punching add some extra force with your kiais. These shrieks are the audible manifestation of your inner energy. As you lose your natural inhibitions to shouting you will begin to focus that energy into power. This is the point in Zen when you start hearing about chi or cosmic breath.
• If you have a sparring partner then imagine they arc someone else as you practise attacking.
Picture them as someone you really would like to hit And practise channelling your aggression into that image. After a short while you will find that your blows will become much more powerful and focused. This should encourage you to try even harder. Not having a sparring partner is no reason for not practising, you'll just have to improvise Travelling a lot. as I seem to do. has made me the master of improvisation. In every house, hotel room or garden there will be some suitable inanimate object to attack and therefore no excuse for not spending 10 minutes brushing up your personal survival plan.
Mirrors and windows are ideal for practising your stances and punches in front of because you can see what is happening and assess whether it looks real and frightening to an opponent. Walls and furniture are excellent for kicking, although be carcful about breakages, and curtains are ideal for co-ordinating distance and strikes. When attacking curtains do make sure that the window is open and don't be tempted to land any flying kicks. You could find yourself really flying!
I have covered several aspects of the warrior mentality and the only one I wish to add at this stage of our training is Mushien. This is the Zen belief in no mind and no vision which achieves purest mind and total conccpt.
To translate this into workable concepts one would look at it as harnessing the animal spirit which lurks within. This raw animal power allows people to achieve spectacular feats of strength and endurance but it is also the power which leads to blind animal rage. Sometimes this animal fury may make you believe that you could walk straight through a brick wall, and perhaps you could, but what physical damage might you sustain? It would be better to look for the door!
This same power can manifest itself in battle. Here it will lead the naive warrior blindly forward, unaware of the danger he faces. Unfortunately most warriors, and their animal fury, die from a sword through the heart. Your defence may not be against a sword but it could still be for your life or integrity. Harness the animal, use it and steer it for your greater benefit. You will be a better person for it.
Mushien means taking in the entire picturc without having to look and interpreting the information without having to think. As you begin to grasp the advanced concept of continuous attack you will begin to understand Mushien better
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