When learning Wing Chun, I think one of the most important things my teacher taught me was to stay calm when taking a punch. Granted, that’s not exactly easy when someone’s pummeling you in the face but he believed that, eventually, Wing Chun would help me prevent that. He was referring more to the glancing blows and sloppy jabs people may throw in a street fight.
He believed there were types of fights and I’ve always believed the same thing. When you’re jumped or mugged you won’t necessarily have prior knowledge that you’re about to trade blows with someone and so that leaves you most vulnerable.
However, in some cases, some dickhead might just want you to knuckle up and scrap it out. This is where knowledge of body and mind comes in. Most of the time, these days, street fighters will aim to land a knockout punch - jaw, temples and even cheekbones. If you can fend of these attacks and remain calm then you’re onto something.
An important aspect of many martial arts are sensitive strikes. Blows to the groin, eyes and throat. In my opinion, if you’re getting battered, mugged, jumped or even raped these you need to incorporate these. It seems so many modern martial arts teaching shy away from brutality when brutality might get you out of a situation.
Blokes have adam’s apples. It’s basically the punching bag of the throat. A quick finger jab, chop or punch to the throat will put anyone down. If it’s self defense or, at worst, life and death, go for it. Stay calm, remember what you know and strike…fucking HARD.
Hung Gar has many strikes to the ear, with the palm cupped. Again, this can cause a ruptured eardrum. It stops opponents in their tracks.
And this is where the “mind” element of martial arts comes in. It’s all good and well knowing, say, Wing Chun but what happens when you get in a fight, forget everything you know and start flailing your arms around like a massive twat? Calmness is important to utilizing what you know. Looking and seeing. Is he landing sloppy body shots on you? Stay calm and absorb them. Is his groin exposed? Ok…kick. Kick fucking HARD.
A lot of martial arts is about opportunity but protecting yourself until that opportunity arises. Punches hurt but 99% of the time they won’t kill you. Hell, about 60% of the time they won’t even do any damage, significant or otherwise. Bide your time, protect yourself, stay calm and then hit him/her where it counts.
Always remember that, in the street, your opponent won’t know what you know. A mugger won’t expect a snake style gouge to the eyes (it sounds silly, I know). Some wanker in a club will adopt a boxing pose and won’t expect you to deliver arms locks or knees stomps etc.
I’m not martial arts master. Shit, I’m not even a fighter but I think it’s good to understand that fighting isn’t just adopting a boxers’ pose and wailing on each other. I don’t think rape prevention is simply pushing a man away and shouting “No! Stop!” or “Fire!” as they teach sometimes. It’s about stopping it there and then, not putting off what might or might not happen. And doing this by staying calm and aware of what exactly to do.
I don’t know, I just feel as though actually STOPPING someone is such a lost part of martial arts. It’s all good and well t be able to do a flashy kick but ho do you stop someone? How do you adapt to a real life situation. A butterfly kick with an illusion twist probably won’t get you far whereas a rake to the eyes, a jab to the underarm and swift kick to the groin might do the job.
Again, I’m no fighting genius but it’s just interesting that knowledge and ability to apply knowledge are two entirely different things, Knowing martial arts and having FAITH in your martial arts are, again, very different indeed.
Isaiah Rashad is coming