The Limitations of Sparring as opposed to Alternative Training Practices.

Discussion in 'Ninjutsu' started by CKava, Jun 5, 2006.

  1. fire&steel

    fire&steel Valued Member

    It may well have but it was bound to take this turn sooner or later. As far as being productive I think not for as RT stated it all comes down to opinion. Secondly some of us here have been in the sparring world and understand its limits with regard to our art where as CKava has not trained in our way.

    Well if your happy he is not then I must say I was wrong and say sorry to him.

    Not any of his replies to my posts. He has tried to cloud and confuse the issue played at being pedantic made several oxymoron replies and tried to put words into my mouth or twist what I have said out of context of its original meaning.

    With a view to recent topic along the same line was this thread really needed and how exactly would it have ever been productive in any manner.
    Maybe it should have been locked before it went sideways and as CKava said himself he got the replies he wanted in the first two pages.

    To paraphrase JFK Maybe we should ask not what we can add to this discussion but what this discussion adds to the ninjutsu forum of MAP ?
  2. Dale Seago

    Dale Seago Matthew 7:6

    It's also unrealistic in the sense that it can (not "inevitably will", but "can") teach you to NOT respond to a strike or kick the same way you would without the gear. Since we ("we" as in "my dojo") also work on armored combat methods, this is not an unimportant consideration.

    It may be useful to know that we use strikes (and kicks) for a number of purposes, not just the "obvious" one of causing damage. They may also be used to cause pain, a "startle" reaction, unbalancing, or changing the "shape of the space" you're dealing with by changing the way his structure is aligned.

    Or, of course, to cause damage. :D As well as any or all of the above combined.

    Part of being an uke is "receiving" applications by the tori, learning how to "go with the flow" of what he's doing in order to either avoid or lessen damage to yourself or be able to find space within his technique where you could counter it.

    Speaking only of my own dojo here, contact with strikes & kicks tends not to be intentionally heavy (though sometimes you'll catch a pretty good one if you don't move well). Rather, it's hard enough to "let the uke know" what the effects (both psychological and physical) would be had the tori put more into it. The uke allows himself to respond accordingly. Thus, for example, if tori is doing something which happens to involve a knee-dislocating kick, uke doesn't try to "suck it up or "shrug it off": He lets himself move with it, letting his balance and structure be affected as they would be if the kick was harder -- that is, IF it was a good kick, proper angle, enough force to let uke's body know what way it should go, etc.

    As for "conditioning to take hits", though. . .If you're wondering about anything in the Bujinkan comparable to Chinese "Iron Shirt" training, if it's there I still haven't encountered it after 22 years.

    Yes, that's what I've been trying to say. Everyone should also, please, note that I've been saying "for the purpose of learning Budo Taijutsu".

    As I said, it's a matter of how you define the term. A lot of people probably would classify at least some of what we do in my dojo as "sparring" (though I don't think of it that way myself); but if so then please, PLEASE don't let the people at Bullshido know that we sometimes spar, I'll never live it down. :p
  3. kmguy8

    kmguy8 Not Sin Binned

    dear n00b,

    i understand that with 6 posts I may seem like a phony to you. Truth is, alomst every question you asked here has been answered my me on this forum at one time or another. I refuse to have to go through the process of "proving" myself every time some n00b wants to know who I am.

    hell, I answered almost half those questions yet again in the Ninjutsu forum.. only 2 days ago....

    While some here do know my name, most do not... just like 90% of MAP members...

    Let's see.... two other quick things... I like many members here that post alot.. use the "new posts" shortcut up top.... hence.. I post in many forums.. i hardly look where they are...

    and finally, my casual and friendly "tough guy" banter was to another member who had PMed me asking me to come train with him the other day. I did not realize until the locale was listed to me.. that it was the same guy I had just asked to "see" his training... so I was overly friendly and a little silly about it....

    so, in conclusion,

    welcome to MAP
    all our posts are searchable
    I wil not repeat myself for every n00b
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2006
  4. Hissatsu

    Hissatsu End of the Road: Moved On

    Answers to your original questions....

    I will answer your questions - feel free to re-direct as necessary:

    A. We deal with fakes. We also deal with intent. It has also been my understanding that most people who talk about "real" encounters (ie. life and death situations) don't talk about feints much. Feinting seems to be used more in the realm of "fighting" instead of surviving. But... we have covered it extensively in the past.

    B. I have been knocked unconscious in a Bujinkan Class - and bloodied and bruised more times than I can count. Does that change your ascertion for B?

    C. Resisting people aren't problematic. We have more tools in the shed then we know what to do with. If you want to make a much better point, then try, "You aren't used to someone else trying to 'win' and actively working to gain advantage as well..." -- in which case you would be right.... not nearly enough people in this art train with the idea that they are facing someone as good as they are -- who is actively trying to shape the space as well... This is a generalization, but seems fairly accurate from my experience. Of course, there are plenty of people out there that are exceptions to what I just said... But back to your question, resisting people aren't much of an issue. If a person doesn't know how to deal with a resisting partner, it is because they can't see....

    D. I don't hide behind the "we are too deadly to spar" crap that some people put up. So this point is lost on me. If you can change your mindset in class while moving slow to "throw the guy on his head so his brains fall out... - while executing a very safe throw that lets him land flat on his back.... then you should be able to spar and "see" the dirty stuff as well. I agree with you that this is a case of "having your cake and eating it too".

    Hopefully that helps things along.... :)
  5. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    Ok alot of replies and some points Id like to discuss but I dont have the time this evening so I'll just address one or two things quickly...

    What are you talking about? Muay Thai matches are ALL fought with gloves? All Muay Thai fighters also train with Thai pads (hence the name!). You must have been training with really unusual Thai fighters who don't hit pads and don't wear gloves because A) they definitely werent training in a Thai Boxing gym were Thai pads are STANDARD equipment and B) you can't fight in Thai Boxing tournaments without gloves...

    Im not suggesting people wear padding when in tournaments but they definitely do wear gloves. Seriously fire&steel padwork is one of the key elements of Muay Thai training so if you know Thai boxing guys who put down padwork then its very unlkely they were proper Muay Thai guys.

    I train Muay Thai now and before that Wing Chun. I've had experience training with TKD, Tai Chi, Boxing and obviously Muay Thai & Wing Chun people. Never met any Ninjutsus guys.

    Also the comment about training barefoot being unrealistic was meant as a joke training in Muay Thai Im well aware of how capable Thai boxers can be.

    I'll get round to the other points when I can.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2006
  6. BocaDeCalca

    BocaDeCalca New Member

  7. Nick Mandilas

    Nick Mandilas Resistance is an option..

    Now most of our training is down without gloves and pads, but yes I have no problem with training with pads on and do it often. Resistance training with combat gloves is good...sometimes, in particular when training with my friends, I like to go hard as hard can be so in these cases, a head guard, gloves and a groin guard comes in handy. But while I agree with Dale's comment that pads smother the blow and thus change your reaction, I actually use and wear protective equipment during sparring so that I can get used to HITTING full force, etc... and not get used to recieving the blow. These are two different sensations and must be trained differently. Hitting someone in the head with full force to me is very different to hitting a punching bag as a body may stay still but the head move... you need to train in all aspects.

    Like I said... healthy balance.
  8. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    From what people are posting now it really doesn't sound like you consider sparring useless at all! I can appreciate the training methods many of you have mentioned recently even though Im equally sure I would disagree with others but regardless... thanks. This is the discussion I was hoping for and I actually do feel like I understand alot of people's position alot better now. I realise the Bujinkan is not a monolithic entity and standards and training methods will vary between schools but I knew that from the beginning. Generalisations make discussions possible but in many ways they can create artificial categories that don't fit many clubs labelled under the category.

    You know Thai Boxing has throws in it right? Not hip throws (or at least not in the sport style) but a good clincher can pretty much throw you whichever way he likes. Also I never said your concrete was less hard than my gyms concrete I said falling onto the floor is not the same as getting punched.

    Wow I sound pretty talented. Though I can't take all the credit afterall I'm only as good as the material certain members (wink, wink) provide me.

    Pretty glad it hasn't been locked as I'm getting decent replies again on the last 2 pages.

    This sounds very similiar to many of the techniques used when sparring. It might be interesting to note then that just like your club all the MT gyms Ive been at also don't only think about hitting with the view to cause maximum damage. Tricking people, setting them up, interrupting their flow, changing the tempo, pressurising them, drawing their attention to a ceratin area etc. etc. are all possible reasons for throwing a punch or kick. To land a good solid hit or put you in a better position are often the reason people perform techniques during sparring but they aren't the only reason.

    I papreciate the information but I was actually referring to conditioning in the sense of learning how to react to punches and kicks once they have gotten through. People can be as graceful as swans but clock them one in the head or land a strong kick to their ribs and all their poise, their graceful techniques and most of all their mental planning goes to pieces. This usually happens the first time people spar even people who have previously trained in self defence scenarios in my experience and then continues to decrease as the person gets more experience with sparring and so becomes more accustomed to the feeling of being hit and not letting it effect you too much while also becoming better at avoiding it.

    Appreciate the detailed response Dale!

    I'll get round to your reply in the morning DWeidman as Im too banjaxed to continue now... need some sleep.
  9. Dale Seago

    Dale Seago Matthew 7:6

    Ah, now I see where you're coming from -- thanks for the clarification. I agree that this can be problematic, and I feel that gaining some experience with (both) being hit and hitting is important. For an example of an approach some of us use, see this post:

    . . .and also go two posts up from there. I was present when the photo was taken, though I don't appear in it (I remember it for sure now because I recognize someone else in the photo besides Kruse.). :) The STRIKE program was originally developed many years ago by Prof. Robert Humphrey (a Iwo Jima, WWII Marine officer) for the Marine Corps, though it was never adopted Corps-wide. Humphrey had been a boxer before joining the Corps; he stopped fighting after accidentally killing a man in the ring, but he never lost his love of the sport. For his pioneering work in cross-cultural conflict resolution, he also was posthumously promoted to an honorary 10th dan in the Bujinkan by Hatsumi sensei (who knew him) following his death from cancer.
  10. Mongo

    Mongo New Member

    This is actually the most important thing that will actually help your training. There is times that some skills should be rehearsed and done at varying speeds and levels of resistance but there needs to be occasional pressure testing. It will show the weaknesses in the basics and give an idea on how those skills can be used.

    Rubber Tanto is correct. Pads and mats (soft ground) is neccessary because of the injury factor, no way to get around it. There are still plenty of injuries to contend with so sparring should be a limited practice.

    One of the important things that sparring can do is maintain the focus on appliable techniques. I have seen some BJK technique that may have application as drill but are nowhere near realistic for a real encounter. Sparring will help seperate the the usable skills at each level and illustrate the application of the basic (reliable) skills.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2006
  11. Nick Mandilas

    Nick Mandilas Resistance is an option..

    Thanks for the thumbs up mongo.

    A comment my sensei said a few weeks back which just came to mind is that people think that when he says Randori he means all out mad sparring from white belt onwards. But as he said...the bujinkan has alot of stuff to learn in it. You need to understand the concepts of what the system is about first, understand the tools you will have at your disposal second, then understand what works, what doesn't and what can be adpted to real life altercations second. And that is only done under resistance/pressure. But having said all that, in any system, you can't let training go beyond ability.

    I start to understand more and more as to what he means by this. There are many things in our katas that look useless in there standard form against a resistant partner, but as you a) understand the principals of what you are doing, b) understand the movement then you can adapt and adjust the kata to a more modern aproach.

    Why do we not just change our dojo to a modern aproach only? Well as he said, not everyone does this art to be a fighter. Some just do it for the art. This way you get the best of both worlds!
  12. DuncanM

    DuncanM Valued Member

    I'm sure that answering a couple of simple questions is a lot easier than writing out that little essay every time someone asks about your background.

    You can cut and paste or link to it.

    I have every right to ask. Equally you have every right not to answer - as you have chosen to do.

    But don't expect me to then take you seriously.
  13. kmguy8

    kmguy8 Not Sin Binned

    the point is.. i have answered... many times
    i could care less if you take me seriously

    edit.. here is a start though - from a couple days ago as I mentioned
    if you dig you'll find the rest

    AND - it is not my place to answer to you .... you can dig,. whay the hell should I have to dig up my records to prove something to some pushy "jerk" with 6 posts????

    i think we both know where you can go
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2006
  14. DuncanM

    DuncanM Valued Member

    On sparing.

    Sparing is a tool like any other. It can be used well, badly or not at all. I only know one Shihan in Japan who regularly uses sparing as a tool. Hatsumi-sensei has used it in different forms in the past. I don’t think there is a definite opinion on sparing and grappling exercises but if you decide to use it you must take responsibility for it.

    The debate with people from other styles is difficult because in English we don’t separate Budo from Kakutogi as they do in the Japanese. I think it is pointless for a Budoka to argue with a practitioner of one of the various styles of Kakutogi.

    The most important thing is the kihon. If you have good Kihon then you can naturally apply things within a sparing match or a real situation. As Takamatsu-sensei said winning should be a natural result from years of training.
  15. Nick Mandilas

    Nick Mandilas Resistance is an option..

    I think I understand what you want to say here but just in case it's different on what I think you mean, can you elaborate.
  16. kmguy8

    kmguy8 Not Sin Binned

    i broke downand PMed a reply to DuncanM's questions
    anyone else that wants it.. please PM me too
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2006
  17. Nick Mandilas

    Nick Mandilas Resistance is an option..

    I'll pass thanks dude, as long as you aint spouting crap and have something interesting to say, be it funny or thought inspiring, I really couldn't give a rat's turd who you are.
  18. Big Will

    Big Will Ninpô Ikkan

    Seriously yeah.
  19. Shau

    Shau kurai okami

    Egads!!! Not only did you steal my line, but you stole my line that was directed at YOU in a completely different thread! :woo: :bang: :woo:
    What is this world coming to?

    PS: By the way, I am being sarcastic, if you don't get the hint

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