We study theory, then struggle to put it in practice. We train in a dojo or kwoon, then have to think quickly on our feet when we get into a real life "situation."
Below is an excerpt from a very good article at Low Tech Combat, which explores the differences between training and reality. To read the whole article, click here.
We all know that the training environment is quite different to the environment we will likely find ourselves in if we ever have to use these skills for real. Our busy lifestyle these days often means that only little thought is given to these differences. We know we must take responsibility to protect ourselves so we go to work, go to the gym, dojo or dojang or whatever to train, go home, sleep and repeat.
What I wanted to do is put together a list of the 11 Key Differences Between Training and the Real Thing. These highlight some of the differences we often have very little time to consider. It is these differences that may contribute to surprise (which is bad), and a below normal level of performance in the heat of the moment.
11 Key Differences Between Training and the Real Thing
- Consequences. In the gym training, no matter how hard we think we are going, in the back of our minds we know that we are training with another person who is there to learn. They are not going to stomp our heads or launch a full power soccer kick at our faces. There is also an instructor who controls the action and is there to step in immediately if ever things get out of hand.
On the street however, tapping out won't mean the attack will stop. There is no referee to save you and grant the attacker a TKO victory. Falling to the ground won't mean the fight is over. There are very serious consequences in the Real Thing.
- Space. Often, Low Tech Combat on the street is at very close range where each combatant has a hold of the other with at least one hand. There is no space to manoeuvre and get into your comfortable distance.
If your preferred range is long range where you like to pick apart your opponent from a distance, this is likely to cause you some serious issues. In the Real Thing, space is quite often a luxury that is rarely granted.
- Time. In training, many people enjoy sparring and wrestling (myself included), but one aspect that is quite different in the Real Thing is that there will be little or no time to 'feel out' your opponent. There is no time for warming up first. There is no time for getting mentally prepared prior to the encounter. Attacks can flair up very quickly, often at times when you do not want them to. Real Low Tech Combat is fast.