Good talk on blocks

Sensei Canna offers insight into the real world of self defense!

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:05 am

miked »

Van,

I had to testify at an arbritration this past week and prior to that had my deposition taken. The opposing counsel is a "bulldog" with no regard for tact. if you know what I mean.

He is an expert at unmasking vulnerabilities and exploiting these.

I knew our side was in the right and I knew that my words were true and that he was blowing smoke and obfuscating the facts throughout the entire process.

I thought the cross-exam would be difficult but due to my training I was told that I was a 'perfect' witness. I remained calm, cool, confortable, relaxed and "in control". I also used the Uechi stare on the opposing counsel and spoke at a pace which broke up his rythym. He wasn't used to that or being stared down.

This was just like being in a sparring match or a fight and I recognized it as such and played it the same way.


However, I wouldn't want to make a living as an expert witness. It would be like engaging in a fight every month.

No thanks!!

All the best,

Mike D.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:11 am

Mike,

Good post. Depositions can be tough because they are adversarial proceedings.

Essentially, opposing counsel has the mission of destroying your credibility and tripping you up every step of the way.

In my work I have been deposed a number of times by some of the best in the business. It is no picnic as you are hit by the chemical cocktail at some level, with dry mouth and hands tremor, imperceptible as it might.

At times it becomes difficult to concentrate under verbal “attack” by the opposition, and anger wells up clouding your responses that is exactly what the opposition set out to do.

Then there are all those personal questions that are very invasive.

Just say : I don't answer personal questions.

You will then be told he will get a court order to make you answer...you say 'fine with me'...

But the more depositions you are subjected to the better you will get at dealing with them. There will be a chemical cocktail and you will need to cope with it.

Sounds to me you did a great job with the stare-down. Not many lawyers expect that from a deponent, expected to be “lambs” rather than tigers, and intimidated by the process.

There are some good books out that prepare the witness very well.

But it all boils down to a test of will and control. You must time your responses to get “under the skin” of the pompous and blusterous opponent, but it must be done with skill, lest it f** up your case.

Many good lawyers will expect emotions of the deposition process to be recorded down as well, and they can be used against you.

Congratulations.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:15 am

Roadking »

I was re-reading Mark's encounter with an agressive salesperson and I thought I would give some added perspective.

I have had the unfortunate experience of being on the delivery side of the "aggresive salesman" working in trade shows and other similar events.

The mindset is to try to engage every one who passes with in contact range of your booth. It really becomes a numbers game.

The more people you engage, the more prospects you can generate, the more prospects you have the potential customers you have, and so on.

I wonder what the real world application to a self defence situation this is? It is one thing to try to make a sale, onother to accost some one.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:39 pm

Mark W »

Roadking,

I guess initially there were two ideas I had on the parallels between the aggressive salesman type situation and the street confrontation. I wondered whether there was any form of target selection going on, and if so how it was done.

From what you say as a salesman your not looking for any particular target, just getting as many leads as possible?

I wondered about this because these salesman usually avoid me but on a day where I felt down I got hooked. But it could have been all my attitude I suppose.

The other thing was the difference in having a 'switched on' mind and a 'switched off' mind. If you are initially unaware of whats going on and you 'opponent' presses his initial advantage in can be hard to recover.

Mark
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:41 pm

On a subliminal level, I think that both the salesman and the street “predator” look for leads, potential targets for dominance and control through their willingness to be engaged into a sense of obligation.

Goleman writes that we predict the behavior of other human beings based on “body-talk” we recognize, e.g., gestures, movements and facial expressions, the majority of which are presented unconsciously to the world at large.

Just as these “movements” are unconscious, so is our reading of them usually unconscious.


Given a “motivation” on “search mode” [ sales or predators] the trap springs.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:47 pm

The self defense issue is complicated and each case is decided on the particular or peculiar set of facts.

Self defense as a criminal defense is not automatic, and to have a jury instructed, the defending party must present enough evidence, which if believed could be defense.

There is the duty of retreat, and of care, the question of cessation, and sufficiency of force all to contend with, and you guessed it, a bunch of armchair admirals with 20/20 hindsight.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 10:59 pm

hthom »

One's mind going blank right before the stuff hits the fan. This subject has been written and talked about and repeated so many times.

What is really disappointing in this case is that I have repeated this many times in my self defense classes, and, well, here is a brief summary of my interview with my student who just got into a school yard fight. (Let's not get into who was right or wrong and why the fight)

Me: why did you let him get close enough to push you? Haven't I told you enough times to keep a distance when you know that someone is picking a fight?

Him: I don't know. I wasn't thinking.

Me: with all the practices we did on the dummy, with all your sparring and your tournaments, why didn't you see his punch (to the mouth) coming?

Him: I don't know. My mind went blank.

Me: what happened to all the blocks I taught you? What happened to the simultaneous block and palm strike to the head we practiced on the dummy every week?

Him: I don't know. My mind went blank.

Me: You have been doing karate for more than 8 years now. How did you just let him walk up to you and punch you and get you in a head lock? We practiced that stuff a million times!


Him: I don't know. My mind went blank.

Me: And (after he got away from the head lock) why did you do a head lock on him and ended up on the ground? I told you to stay off the ground. I taught you the palm strikes, the elbow strikes. You don't just go and grab somebody into a head lock.

Him: I don't know.

Me: and why did you stay on the ground with him (although he had the bully mounted and hitting his head)? I told you a million times that it is dangerous to stay on the ground. Good thing his buddy was too chicken to do anything to you while you were there. Good thing he didn't have a knife.

Him: I don't know.

Anyway, this is just another example of what happens in a real fight. All the training and good stuff just evaporate into the thin air. I experienced it myself many times when I was younger. Hate to see my students having to learn on their own.

Good experience for him though. He is my 12 year old son, 5'5". The bully is also 12. 5'7". They are big nowadays.

hthom
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 11:41 pm

2Green »

Perhaps he did not forget his training.

Perhaps his training did not prepare him for the real thing.

Please don't shred me: I don't know the people involved or the quality of the training regimen, but if an 8-year student loses it on the school battlefield, he/she is NOT prepared for even schoolyard life.

And I as an adult realize I am little better prepared despite my "training" so I am not pointing fingers.

This is a prime example of the scenario that makes me drive home after every class thinking: "what exactly is it that I am learning?"

My conclusion has been for some time that it's not realistic self-defense, more like learning to act out self defense.

This is (to me) because I have not yet gotten to the stage where it has BECOME real self defense. Maybe eventually it will...I hope so. I work on it.

But until then, I don't delude myself that I'm Bruce Lee and depend on what I've learned for self defense: I'd be dead!

After four years of training, I am every bit as cautious and observant and deferrential as before I started.I simply do not believe I can magically overpower three real attackers like Kanshiwa Bunkai.

I think Karate is a long road to self defense, with many other benefits along the way.

It's not a quick 5-year plan to invincibility.

At least, not for me. NM
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Aug 18, 2018 11:55 pm

Still, the reality is that regardless of your supposed blocking, and even slipping and dodging skills, you come up against a fast puncher, you will be hit in the head and in the body. Period.

It is apparent to all who are realists and not living in the traditional cocoon, that the best people at dealing with head shots, and body shots, such as uppercuts and hooks, are the ones with a boxing background, period.

When you watch an Uechi or other traditional practitioner against a fast puncher at close range, it is plain to see that the traditional blocks have no chance of working, because they don’t even get the chance to “activate” into motion as the hits are too fast to register on the brain.

Anyone who disputes this, and believes he can match boxing style fast punches with blocks, really needs his head examined.

The other view is that Uechi conditioning of the body should be so extreme that all one needs do is to protect the face and not worry from shots to the body.

Two problems here:

1] They don’t explain how they will protect the face. If you are not skilled in dealing with headshots, but only think you are because of your wauke block and prearranged kumites, you are going down, period.

If anyone of a different association/organization is living in this delusive mind state, please step forward and show us. Have I got the sparring partner for you!

2] Getting hit in the body by a trained boxer is no picnic. The force those guys can generate is quadruple what any average martial artist thinks he can muster up.

A semi-pro boxer will cave your chest and ribs in. But keep on dreaming…. Dreams are free.

And there are people, not boxers, who will hit you just as hard in the body and fold you over.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Aug 19, 2018 4:38 am

Laird>>
What do boxers do that karate-ka don't do, with respect to generating hitting force?
How can a boxer hit with quadruple my power in an instant, and why can't I learn that?
--------------------------

Want to learn to kick, go to a kicking style, and want to learn to punch go to the gym and play with the boxers.

What do boxers do that karate-ka don't do, with respect to generating hitting force?

---------------
They don't stand in front of their opponent flat footed as stationary targets. Boxing is much like a chess match (to borrow an analogy from Bill)

Punches are used to create openings and set up the finishing shot. Boxers punch hard but not every shot is thrown with the one shot one kill mindset.

Boxers use strategy to set you up and catch you walking in, to pop the chin up and hit it with the power shot.

The boxer's defensive skills are also used to set up the big power shot. Take the boxer who goes down under and into the looping blow, or the bob and weave.

These defensive movements build tremendous rotational power that will be released on the counter shot. These punches come from the floor almost the entire body is utilized in generating the shot.

Can we honestly say we strike like this of are we just tossing out some fluffy punches generated at the shoulder?

When was the last time we saw strategy being taught in a Uechi dojo?

Take a look at how Uechi worships speed and deceptive speed. Students are taught not to bounce or pop out of their stance when closing with an attack.

Come in on one level, get the jump on your opponent so he doesn't see you coming until your strike is there. Well works in the dojo with our kind.

But with other folks they read our timing and attack when we pause motionless and settle into our stance before launching the attack.

Turning our head into a big motionless target.

When was the last time we were in a dojo that stressed keeping the head moving or taught footwork?

Boxers train far harder.....
--------------
Two hours of class a week, most of us are in a different league.

Maloney sensei did prove this quite convincingly when he switched his fighters to full contact.
It was a combination of genetics and specialized physical and mental training that became “natural selection” in the ring.
---------------------
And even the toughest had their eyes opened, training and conditioning began to resemble boxers, and the search for power began in earnest. the fluff was quickly abandoned.

Our big problem is that we don’t train enough to educate our subconscious to “expect” and deal with headshots, in spite of the denial.
---------------------
How much sparring does the average student get in attending 2 classes /week @ 1.5 hours/class?

Laird
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Aug 19, 2018 12:01 pm

In a street fight you are liable to come up against “natural punchers” or if it is not your lucky day, an amateur or semi-pro fighter.

>Some of these guys are REAL scrappers, and the thought of getting hurt is something that simply doesn't exist. Most people have never met a real street fighter or even someone who hangs out on the street or someone who has done time.
Those guys are just "nuts" when it comes to fighting. -- I'm not talking about the mouth variety, they're quiet and can fluck you over as easily as looking at you.<Allen

This is a hard truth to digest for us Uechi people who will tend to rationalize it.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Aug 19, 2018 12:11 pm

Something from the Italian martial arts website is good reading
Something from the Italian website:
Usually blocking punches is dumb.
I throw at your face, you get your guard up to block, now you are blind and are
eating hooks coming around your shields or you are getting tackled.

Generally you wanna keep a guard up, chin tucked, elbows in, but you dont wanna
go fishing for blocks, rather you should be slipping punches, bobbing,weaving,
or clinching.

The
blocking techniques which are taught by traditional styles seemed
impractical- big arm movements didn't make sense - too slow.

The guard
taught by traditional styles - one arm high, one arm low, didn't make any
sense, and by switching to a boxer's guard I found that I blocked about
70% more punches to the face successfully.

The blocks I use in the style
I am doing now (a non-traditional self-defense style) are called "palm
blocks"- a small circular motion which originates at one side of the face
with an open hand, the palm touching the opponents fist as it's about to
hit the face. It's a very small movement, but very effective.

Most real fights last one or two
> shots.

Real fights? Yep, if they involve sucker punches and ambushes. In which
case who ever hits hardest, first, preferably by surprise is going to
win.

Because of this martial arts of ANY type are of limited use. I
know a lot of people here don't want to think about that but it is
simply the way it is.

Your 30 years of martial arts training comes to
no use if someone decides to hit you from behind in a parking lot with
a baseball bat or thirty guys come at you and at least one has a knife.


Mobility is the key to defense to all of those. FAR better than static
blocking.

. All this pushing and shoving is
90% of the time a prelude to an ass-kicking. I've seen how it usually goes,
and I know the one thing that short-circuit's some guy's momentum is
an opponent who deviates from the script.

I'm not gonna dance with you
until the music's right: you're getting cracked in the face and, if
necessary, kicked in the ribs. That's it.

I've seen too many people
get beaten up because they waited for the other guy to start.

You wait,
you risk not blocking that shot. I got into karate because I didn't like
getting hit. I'm not about to get hit to justify my defense.


The myth that one should perform off-line blocks to defend in combat is
still being taught, even hundreds of years after being exposed as
useless.

Ever tried to do that and make it work in a real fight? If you
tried it, chances are that you got a good thrashing by your opponent.

To take it even further, I'll go so far as to say that most blocking in
general is useless.

Ever tried to block 20 lightning fast chain-punches
with outside/inside blocking techniques? If you were lucky,
you MAYBE blocked one or two of them. There rest ended up in your face
and throat.

Furthermore, the one or two blocks that actually worked left
you vulnerable to the next attack. Good night.

The only blocks that ever
have or ever will work are on-line counter-attacks that offer a barrier
to an opponents thrusts while at the same time, pounding him back
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Aug 19, 2018 5:07 pm

Laird>>

BEST WAY TO PROTECT YOU HEAD…….MOVE IT.
Generally you wanna keep a guard up, chin tucked, elbows in,

----------------------------
I agree, I tuck my chin behind my shoulder, yes you can lift your shoulder to cover the chin. The world will not stop going around the sun (Don't worry I'll drop the shoulder when I punch guys.)
but you dont wanna
go fishing for blocks,
------------------
This is a classic karate rookie mistake, not patient enough to let the punch come to them they try to paw away at your arms . Fearing they will not be able to avoid your strike when it comes. It causes them to lean in and creates lots of openings, what a gift.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Aug 19, 2018 5:15 pm

Laird>>


Now think of Kanshiwa bunkai. First punch sequence, turning into the punch in a guard position. Palm heel guide block, other hand down (Scooping block) and chin tucked safely behind the shoulder.

This is pretty much what goes on dealing with a straight headshot. The palm block or guide block is your power hand (rear foot.) I like to keep mine glued to my temple and punch from there.

When the jab is thrown move the head by rolling the forward shoulder in front of the chin and tuck the chin in behind the shoulder. This will move the head away and to the side of the original punch. At the same time the rear hand slides up to the shoulder to further protect the face, Yes you will catch punches in your palm.

You can time a counter to the mid section to by simply throwing the lead hand the same time you move your head.

Many fighters double to the head with the jab. So your looking at a straight punch then it's pulled back and comes in at a hooking angle.

The rear hand that had slid to the forward shoulder now follows a similar arc that the guide block follows when chambering at the shoulder in kata.

This helps to pick off the hooking jab the head is not huge the doubling of the jab does not move the second punch far from the first. Stacked forearms work well too.

Hooks are thrown around a guard the farther forward your hands the easier they are to get hit with.

If you keep your power hand glued upside your head it will be difficult to be countered with the hook when throwing the jab.

If the hook hits the side of your head with your hand there it will not have as much on it, if you move your hand out a few inches to meet the hook it will have less on it.

Moving away from the hooking jab is dangerous, as you will then walk into the power hand .If you go there you best be following your counter.

Hooks to the head either absorb them with the guard. Counter with a sliding step and jab. In other words move. Or go towards then and under.

If they are of the wild looping variety either counter up the middle or jam them at the elbow and counter.

Not being there and responding with your own shots is the king when it comes to protecting the head.


The blocks I use in the style
I am doing now (a non-traditional self-defense style) are called "palm
blocks"- a small circular motion which originates at one side of the face
with an open hand, the palm touching the opponents fist as it's about to
hit the face. It's a very small movement, but very effective.
------------------------
I like it, but I see it as a more straight motion


Mobility is the key to defense
---------------------
And offense, but we don't teach folks to move do we.

I got into karate because I didn't like
getting hit.
-------------------------
And this is why so many never explore the boxer's toolbox.

The only blocks that ever
have or ever will work are on-line counter-attacks that offer a barrier
to an opponents thrusts while at the same time, pounding him back.
--------------------------
Well we have this in kata but do we spend enough time exploring jamming, sliding and timing counter punches to have any skill at all? That little piece in ten point sure isn't enough Image.

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Aug 19, 2018 5:20 pm

Thaws »

Alot of great ideas on dealing with shots to head and body, but to me FOOTWORK and ANGLES are the key to slipping the slobberknockers.
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