The autumn leaves are falling like rain. Although my neighbors are all barbarians and you, you are a thousand miles away, there are always two cups at my table.

T’ang Dynasty poem

Ten thousand flowers in spring, the moon in autumn, a cool breeze in summer, snow in winter. If your mind isn't clouded by unnecessary things, this is the best season of your life.

~ Wu-men ~

Friday, May 29, 2009

Fear in Martial Arts

Fear is a real issue with which we must contend in our martial arts study. Below is an excerpt from a blog entry about fear. If you click here, you can read the whole post.

One day I saw him on the street, and he was all banged up. “What happened to you?” I asked. He didn’t want to talk about it. A few weeks later I saw him again and this time he confessed. He had been attacked by two teenagers who demanded money, he said. “I just stood there. They hit me and then stole my wallet. I didn’t do anything.” He was so embarrassed.

His martial arts training had failed him because it had been incomplete. He had not learned to use fear, to use his reactions to his advantage. Instead fear and the stress of the moment had become his enemy. He had trained in technique but he had never trained in how to deal with his emotions and body reactions that had gripped him. And he is not alone. This is an unfortunate limitation to most martial artist’s training.


John W. Zimmer said...

Fear can be an issue with students that do not spar much I've found. When a student does practice fighting and comes to the realization that he is fighting better fighters in the school than are out on the street - defending one's self becomes easy to do.

Still for the students that have not had a lot of experence - this is a real issue because they feel guilty for not trying to fight back.

I think an instructor can help best by starting sparring lessons whatever level the student is at.

Rick said...

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