Moving from Art to Art
July 23, 2018
Choosing a Martial Art for Yourself or Your Children
August 6, 2018

When to Use Your Martial Arts

When should you use your martial arts training in an altercation? This is a serious consideration and deserves some deep thought. First, I would say that if your life, or the life of those you are responsible for, is threatened, then there is no thought, only training! But, before that happens it is a good idea to find out what the law is in your community. These laws vary considerably from ‘stand your ground,’ to ‘you must get away if you can.’
I believe you need to make a judgement for yourself in what you are comfortable with and what you are not. A lot will, also, depend on your training. If you have trained to kick and punch but not to control with minimal force, your options will be reduced. As the saying goes, if your only tool is a hammer, every problem soon looks like a nail. Going back to what you feel comfortable with: You can train to perform some devastating techniques, but if you are not willing to use them they will be of little use. John Wayne’s character in a movie explains his success as a gunfighter by saying; “it’s not being fast or accurate. It’s being willing.” He further explains that most are not willing and that will cause a hesitation. This is very true.
The next consideration is parity of force. In most cases if somebody insults you, you cannot just haul off and smack them! If a person pushes you, you can push back, if you have to. (Keep in mind, you could also just walk away.) If they punch or attempt to punch you, you can punch. If they attack with a weapon, deadly force could be necessary. Each incident is different, but if you don’t think about it ahead of time, you are not truly prepared.
Finally; you need to know what is an attack and what isn’t. If a stranger suddenly grabs at you, is it an attack or did they simply lose there balance and stumble? Is the hand reaching towards your head a strike, or are they reaching for something behind you? If you practice it, you can learn to recognize a persons’ intent. This is more that useful!
As always, if you would like to practice these things, come on out to the River of Life dojo, we’d love to train with you!

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