Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Todays TDA Tip: Don't Rush to Failure

All of us have probably dropped something on our foot, tripped and fallen, or hit the send button a moment too soon and wanted that email back, so all of you can probably relate to this tip: Don't rush!

In a self-defense context:

  • Attacking without leading properly (you will get hit on the way in - trust me)
  • Assuming the ability of your opponent based on physique, demeanor, or style of dress (in other words, underestimating or taking for granted that your opponent isn't concealing a weapon)
  • Fighting when it's not necessary. Can you talk, walk, or run your way out of a situation? It can mean the difference between life,death, or injury.

In a martial arts training context:

  • Skipping through conditioning and warmups - can lead to injury
  • Sparring without a plan, or just sparring to spar, not learn
  • Failing to wait until you gauge the skill, ability, and habits of your sparring partner
  • Failing to take notes of the lessons you've learned from your training - have you gotten critiqued by your instructor? If you've gotten advice and not committed it to memory, you've wasted your time and that of your instructor.
  • Failure to enjoy training. One of the great joys of martial arts training, for me, has been that gradual improvement that comes from consistent training and teaching, and the intermittent "a-ha!" moments that come as a result. Another has just been the sheer joy of training itself, the camaraderie of pitting one's wits and skill against yourself with others. Don't miss it!

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