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Of course, my un-PC feeling on that scenario is:

If an ex-navy black belt in BJJ comes in to my house for the sole purpose of killing my family and me, he better be able to dodge shotgun pellets.

I mean, I teach martial arts, and even I still think once you reach a certain level, you're doing it for the martial arts aspect and less for self defense reasons.

There's just too many factors. Let's say you're better than 99.9% of the entire population of the Earth in martial arts. That means that you can basically beat anyone on Earth. What happens when three guys attack you with clubs? What do you do, train harder?

I'm not saying that more training is a bad idea or that it doesn't increase your odds of being able to fend off a guy; but you have to respect the rationale of someone saying, "You know what, I'm going to NOT train hard again for the rest of my life, taking the chance that IF someone attacks me WITHOUT a gun, that he will not be part of that elite 10% that surpassed me in skill." I mean, yes, there's a chance, but there's always a chance, and spending your time on other things rather than MA seems perfectly fine to me, considering the risk is admittedly small.

Couple more things:
1) About punching the face or head: I agree that it's better to go open hand. I've been working a lot on my boxing skills recently, so closed fist punching has kinda been dominating my mind recently, hence the reference to a closed fist punch in the earlier rant. But I will definately agree that without gloves, open hand shots to the head are far superior than closed. Thanks for pointing that out, Dan.
2) I still defend that strength definately matters. I mean, look at Ken Shamrock, Royce Gracie (heck, look at all the Gracies), or any UFC guy. Sure, they have insane skills, but all of them do strength training (the Gracies even have special workouts). Consider that in the time they could have taken to perfect their skill, they chose instead to do strength training. A 120 lb Ken Shamrock versus a 220 lb Ken Shamrock will heavily go in favor towards Ken Shamrock plus 100 lbs.

Again, pepper spray. If I pepper sprayed Ken Shamrock in the face, he would fall to the floor, assume the fetal position, and apologize to me in habanero-soaked tears for ever attempting to try to take my wallet.

If I peppersprayed the entire Gracie family, they too, would drop to the floor and kowtow before me.

Same goes for the example of the ex-navy seal with a super duper uber black belt in BJJ, only with Jedi Mind Powers and a lightsaber, and I'll even let him get behind a Ford 350 pickup truck (sans windshield...you know, for the pepper spray) running at me at high speed, playing "Enter Sandman" at 170 decibels, just for the dramatic effect and scare factor, throwing in the entire UFC lineup in the bed of the pickup, all of them also with lightsabers and Force lightning, and Master Yoda can be the hood ornament. Behind them can be John Wayne, Charles Bronson, Mel Gibson (with Braveheart makeup), Hugo Weaver (the bad guy from the Matrix, plus he can have his Matrix bullet time ability), and I'll even let them have Demi Moore in her GI Jane movie. Even with this pickup truck filled to the brim with Jedi-powered, adrenaline pumped, psycho Metallica blasting-death gods, driving at me at 120...no, 190 miles per hour...

Well, no, then peppers spray would fail...but without the pickup truck, they would SO be mine (if I had pepper spray).

Ta ta.

-Ramon http://razor.ramon.com






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there is a 200 lb guy in my jujitsu class(NOT JIU-JITSU, that is brazilian, go to jujitsu http://www.jujitsuamerica.org/ )
anyways, he used to try to overpower people while grappling, but none of this worked, when you use strength you only have a 2 minute window of grappling before the person is too tired to continue normally. once he saw the light, and stopped using his 200lb, i mean 199lbs of muscle, he started winning because he used technique correctly. although, strength is useful for maintaining balance and anything besides grappling, though technique still applies.
pepper spray.... what if they blink?
the money issue is another reason i choose jujitsu. it is VERY cheap compared to other arts, and more effective than most, if not all(opinion). my sensei uses the physics of jujitsu and judo to move around his 600+lbs patient in physical therapy where he works. he moves this patient alone, every day multiple times. he does not use his strength in the least.
MTT, you just described small circle jujitsu. im not joking, small circle jujitsu is completely adaptable depending on the opponent and situation, once you learn the system, you can adapt your own techniques when a situation arises. as opposed to video tapes, in class we are shown the techniques, and then we pair up and perform the techniques on the other person, left side and right side, since not every attacker is right handed. we practice throws, take downs, show pressure points, submissions, and practice grappling quite a bit. jujitsu is renowned for its skill in grappling. every few days of class, we have rondori. this is when everyone lines up by rank, and the highest ranking person goes first, everyone attacks with the attacks which were shown that night, and then the sensei attacks and goes passive-agressive, they go 1:30 to 2 minutes, or until the sensei taps(not often). everyone trains this way for real-life scenarios. you need to try small circle jujitsu, it is worth 10 times the money we charge. make sure the place is jujitsu america certified, the immitators are pathetic.






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I have no doubt that a 200 lb newbie against a 130 lb well trained Martial Artist will probably lose; my point is that a 200 lb well trained martial artist against a 130 lb well trained Martial Artist has an undeniable edge, which is what I tried to get at with the Ken Shamrock and Royce Gracie example, or any UFC or vale tudo fighter out there - technique comes first, but to say strength is ignored or irrelevant seems to me a mistake.

On pepper spray - blinking doesn't matter at all. Pepper spray is greatly misunderstood because people get the impression that all it does it hit the guy in the eyes, and the guy can't see well or at all. It does much more than that.

Pepper spray (a good one anyway) fogs around the person's entire head, and while the eyes do the main thing, pepper spray burns the skin, burns the nasal pasages, and will even burn inside the ear drums. The burning is so intense that even if the person is biologically programmed to not feel pain, the body itself will go into protection mode, and your brain will think your lungs are suffocating (the spray also gets in the lungs, too). It's like drowning without the water. Pepper spray not only hurts, it shuts the guy down. Plus it's basically 100% effective, and can work against animal attacks (including friggen' Grizzly bears. I may be good at triangle chokes, but when Smokey the Bear starts chasing me, no wristlock in the world is gonna save me).

The best part is that as soon as the eyes burn, 99% of people will instinctively try to rub it out of their eyes, which just rubs it in more. And possibly even better than that is the person WILL recuperate without any permanent damage. It's legal in states where stun guns are not, and hundreds of times more effective.

I know I've been pushing pepper spray a lot, but I've met two people who are alive today because of it, one of which was using a brand that wasn't even that great.

Not to say that it's infallible; in a closed room you stand a good chance of getting yourself and innocent bystanders sprayed. But then again, if you didn't have it in such a situation, a couple of you could probably end up dead.

If you want a good idea of how strong pepperspray is, there's a show on MTV called, "Jack*ss" (you can figure out what the asterisk is) and you can probably find the episode online. In it, a young rogue named Johnny Knoxville does a skit called "Self Defense", where he tests pepper spray, a stun gun, and a tazer on himself. He laughs at the stun gun (he goes down, but he found the whole thing hilarious), he laughed a little at the tazer (until his friend kept shocking him while he tried to remove it), but when he got hit with the pepper spray, he went straight down, without a smile, and just kept cursing. The show shows clips of him almost recovering then falling down again.

Johnny: "It's like my eyes have diarrhea."

The show concluded with Knoxville saying: "The pepper spray was the worst by far."

As far as my thoughts on grappling, check out my grappling, takedown, striking rant up above. The jujitsu you describe sounds pretty good; but like I said, if a striker and a grappler face off, it's going to come down to who's better at takedowns. Most grappling arts focus on grappling and takedowns, but if the boxer knows takedowns just as well, the match is far more evenly matched than people think it is. For a good example of this, check out what I think was a Pride fight or something between Royce Gracie and a Japanese professional wrestler (not a grappler, though). Because the Japanese guy was trained really well at takedowns, he defended Royce's takedowns perfectly, and the fight lasted I believe over an hour (and the Japanese guy won!).

One image I will never get out of my head is a match between Dan Severn and this incredible kickboxer (who, unfortunately, knew absolute squate about takedowns). The guy gives Severn a kick, but the Severn is so tough he shrugs it off, grabs the guy, and just body slammed him head first three times into the matt. It was at this point I realized, yes, strength can actually matter.

So let me redo my fight theory a bit:

Skill + Real Strength = Fight Variable

It would work like this: Bill doesn't do the wristlock quite right, but he's so strong that he can power it to the point that it's just as good as someone weaker who has the technique better. Their fight variable for that section would be the same.

The three categories are:
Takedowns
Grappling
Striking

Each category gets filled in with the fighter's fight variable. On a scale of 1 to 10, I would give myself the following:

Takedowns = 2
Grappling = 8
Striking = 7

Let's give Royce Gracie the following:

Takedowns = 9
Grappling = 10
Striking = 3 (he has that little kicky thing)

Since Royce is better than me in 2 categories, he wins. Let's analyze my little brother.

Takedowns = 5
Grappling = 6
Striking = 5

Since I have two categories better than him, I get the remote control and the big couch, while he tends to his bruises and tattles to my mom. My mom's variables goes as follows:

Takedowns = ?
Grappling = ?
Striking = ?
Authority = 10

Since the authority value trumps all other values, I get grounded.

Cops have an authority of about 9, also trumping all other variables.

And so goes my finalized fight theory. Though I should add my final variable:

Pepper spray = yes

trumps everything. Except mom's authority, which extends to the "possibility of telling dad" ratio.

-Ramon http://razor.ramon.com

[This message has been edited by razordu30 (edited September 12, 2002).]






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Strength is important. Even Morehei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido, was physically strong in his younger days.

One can have functional strength, without having a body-builder's built. I'm not a fan of weight machines myself. I prefer free weights (barbells, dumbells, kettlebells and possibly clubbells. I find that Kettlebell is good for functional strength. But's it's not for wimps http://www.dragondoor.com/b15.html


I haven't tried Clubbells yet, but there's good testimonials, including from Kettlebell enthusiasts. I've been pleased with Coach Sonnon's material so far. I don't think it's available for people outside US. So I'll have to wait.

http://www.clubbell.tv/clubbell.html







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Any of you familiar with both legendary abs and combat abs programs? How do they compare?

I have no clue about reading genius and can't say whether it's a joke or not. But so far, this thread has been very interesting, though not that funny.






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"But so far, this thread has been very interesting, though not that funny."

I guess you mean in that Reading Genius is supposed to be a joke, and that joke hasn't been that funny. In this case, let me say some Reading Genius jokes:

"Reading Genius walks into a bar. Ouch."

Okay, here's a better one:

"Reading Genius the Pirate walks into a bar, wearing a pegleg, a hook, and an eye patch. Reading Genius orders a drink, and the bartender goes, "So, Reading Genius the pirate, how did you get the pegleg?"

Reading Genius the Pirate replies, "We were caught in a stormy sea, and I fell overboard, as my crew tried to pull me out, a shark bit of me leg. Arr..."

"Incredible!" says the bartender. "How did you get the hook?"

"Ar," exclaims Reading Genius the Pirate, "an enemy vessel boarded our ship, and in the middle of all the fighting, one of them cut of me hand...double Arr."

"Wow!" says the bartender. "How did you get the eye-patch?"

"Oh. A Seagull dropping."

"That's it? A seagull pooped in your eye?"

"Ar, but it was my first day with the hook..."

Anybody else know any good reading genius jokes?

-Ramon http://razor.ramon.com






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Pepper spray should be handed out to all MA practitioners the same way Bibles are handed out to prisoners.

Mark P4 is right. It's a waste to spend all your money on tapes and courses trying to be the 'best' fighter. Many MA teachers seem out to prove their style is the best yet they fail to mention that the invention of handguns rendered many of their fighting systems obsolete. Put any fighter you care to mention against a 16 year old hoodlum with an Uzi and good aim, and quite frankly your Gracies, Shamrocks, etc. would be on their way to the nearest morgue.

PS. I still don't know diddley squat about Reading Genius. I also have the impression that it's not worth knowing about.

Carry on






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"If mayhem is the sadistic desire of anyone who takes up the fighting arts of the Orient, I really think it it much easier to get an axe, hammer or pistol. Why spend weeks, months, and even years to develope the skill and power to hurt someone? Don't be overconfident, thinking that no one but you has this knowledge. What one man has achieved, another can certainly exceed, whether it is in wisdom, wealth, or strength. Every man we meet is superior to us in some way." James Lee






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Thank you for the jokes, Ramon. Finally something in the thread matches the topic.






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Just wanted to put in my 2 cents about the "martial arts vs handguns" thing.

First off, I wouldn't say spending money on MA is a waste, just because it's like any other hobby, and people simply find MA fun.

About the handgun thing: we all associate "defending ourselves" as a mugger for some reason. In these instances, yes, almost for sure the mugger will pull a gun on you, and yes, I personally believe that in the vast majority of instances, this would render MA relatively useless. Yes, there are "defend against gun" techniques, but being an enthusiast in firearms as well as MA, I can say with at least some confidence that the guy with the MAC-10 will win over a really good chokehold. That said, if I guy pull a gun on you, give him the keys to the damn Volvo.

But contrary to that instance, most confrontational instances aren't muggings. They're situations of conflict that just get out of hand. The jerk at the bar, the fight over a parking space, I almost got in a fight (chose to walk away instead) with a guy who was upset because he ran through a busy intersection and I almost hit him. Oddly enough, the stats on confrontations that end in fights are greatly increasing among roadside incidents, products of road rage, really.

If you watch just a couple episodes of COPS, you'll notice that there's relatively few muggings in comparison to things like domestic disputes between neighbors or things of that nature.

It just turns out that scuffles aren't planned like muggings; they just happen because people get really mad at each other.

In these instances, no one brings a weapon with them, they just start slugging it out; which is why I clip pepper spray to my belt at all times. I'd like to say it's for muggers, but in plain truth, it's so when some jerk gets upset over God knows what, I can shut him up, and, because I have no morals, probably kick him in the stomach while he's down and spit on his face.

I use pepper spray like I do Cliff's Notes; I read the book and train in MA, but when it gets down to it, I'd rather finish the stupid struggle with as little trouble as possible.

Getting back to the other point - I guess the reason we use the mugger scenario to encapsulate the "self defense" idea for MA is because it's seems more noble. It's some innocent guy pitted against a thief, where it's a matter of bad guy versus good guy, and we'd hope that in this case the good guy knows something the bad guy doesn't, and gets the best of him.

In reality, things are more muddled, and the two guys duking it out fisticuffs are the owners of a Honda Civic and a Ford Explorer, both running late for work, getting upset, almost cutting each other off, who then pull over to the side of the road to argue, get more upset, then beat the living daylights out of each other.

The VAST majority, however, is that people who take MA do so because they simply like it, and because sparring and competing is like any other sport.

-Ramon http://razor.ramon.com

PS - Reading Genius is a joke. Hooray for me for being on-topic again!






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