Simplicity, Efficiency and Awareness

 

It has taken me many years of training to begin to understand that the simplest solution in self-defense is often the best one.  We do look at some fancy, “sexy” (as the other instructor would call them) techniques.  They are beautiful, indeed.  However, as we have discussed in the past, when under extreme duress, these kinds of techniques will often fail due to the physiological changes that stress brings.  That is, of course, unless you absolutely drill them into the ground and they becomes like gross motor skills.

 

I haven’t always practiced mindfulness in my training and have noticed habits of wasted movements that I need to correct—more than I would like to be present!  It became very obvious last night as I was trying to work through a knife flow drill.  If we are sitting and having a rational discussion about the shortest distance between point A and point B being a straight line, it will make perfect sense to both of us.  But for true understanding, I have to put this into action in my training.  I want real efficiency.  So many times this has been touched upon, and yet it never truly sank in until I began teaching others in earnest, both with fitness and with self-defense.  I’m watching people all the time, observing how they move and carry their bodies and wondering how things could be made easier for them.  I remember the words of a past instructor: we should all be striving to move with efficiency and grace.  How efficient and graceful are you when you throw a punch, swing a stick or when you perform a back squat or deadlift?  I have observed that a lot of people are not present in their bodies when they are doing something physical, like training or exercise.  They don’t have a kinesthetic sense at work as they perform actions; you might ask them what they feel as they try to execute techniques, and often they will not be able to answer the question.  So, what opens the door?  Awareness.  No one can teach you how to get it and it takes consistent effort to open it up.  It takes habitual ACTION and ATTENTION.

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