Karate (29/3)

I stepped into the unknown last night and participated in a student's (Cam) Karate class. Not as easy as I expected and this morning I am understanding just how necessary strong and flexible hips are for these type of martial artists. The session was well rounded, high paced and everyone was very well focused. Movements were simple, well explained and much like our dojo drilled repeatedly.
We then did a good 20-30 minutes of sparring which was exhilarating, eye-opening and humbling. Having experience with kickboxing and boxing I was able to employ tactics with some effectiveness but nevertheless copped a few (or ten) good punches to the face (well done Cam!). Although I was able to maintain a good pace, apply pressure and keep Cam at bay with my reach, I still felt at times that my feet were asleep and ineffective. Cam would enter in, bridge the gap with a sweep or low leg kick and then enter above with a punch. This is exactly what I wanted to experience. Something different, foreign and confusing. Another algorithm to keep me baffled for the next month or so.
A good, fast, focused straight line attack, with varying combinations, high-low targeting and with the use of feints is something that all martial artist must get comfortable with and learn to deal with.
One might argue that the focus of our art is different and that combat has no feints and point systems. There isn't any pacing back and forth, jumping on toes, setting up and looking for or creating an opening. Our art is all or nothing and we learn and train to respond and incapacitate committed, focused attacks as quickly and effectively as possible. This is of course true but is it the 'truth', I dare ask? Is it not experience that makes us grow, facilitates refinement and smoothens the rough edges?
Tell me what you think as I value all comments (posts, emails or even conversations over coffee are all acceptable).
I must say though that getting out of my comfort zone, putting myself on the line and experiencing a new art is like travelling to a new country and experiencing a new exotic culture. Refreshing, exciting, invigorating and more importantly - humbling. As it is said in anthropology; "It is only by living in another culture can you truly understand your own".
Ikkan!!

Comments

Travieso said…
Sounds like it would have been a blast! Reminded me of my first (and only) few judo classes...humbling & eye opening. Although our art deals with committed attacks that were developed for the life & death outcomes of the battlefield, we need to incorporate strategies and counter's to learn how to combat feints, & "feeling out" confrontations & rhythm's from the competition & sport based arts that are prevalent today. Adapt or die! ;)
Adam Smith said…
Hey guys,

Some interesting thoughts for sure, an additional perspective that I think is important to consider is found in the following link:

http://www.progressivecombat.com/pdfs/TheCageReality.pdf

All the best and I'm really looking forward to catching up soon.

Adam

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