New Year - New Classes

Having returned from an intense training course in Israel I am once again looking to provide the opportunity for Aucklanders to train in the Israeli combative system of Krav Maga. It is now the New Year and a time to make the resolution in creating a happier, healthier; more toned self by investing in you and taking up Krav Maga.

During my time in Israel I have revised and updated my skills by training exclusively for two weeks with the director of my system. It has been a privilege that was worth the huge cost and effort in travelling from New Zealand to Israel. Not only have I come out of this experience a better and more experienced instructor but I have gained a unique insight into the history and culture of the land and people from which my fighting system originates.

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To Live and Die

 

After a hiatus I am once again teaching martial arts. It has been a while since I put my thoughts, philosophies and insights into a blog. I am once again in that period of limbo when in between jobs I have some time on my hands. At times like this my mind starts to wander as a deluge of memories and nostalgia comes pouring in.

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Knowledge - The Best Defense

Knowledge - The Best Defense

Last weekend I was rather surprised to have a couple of people from Rotorua contacting me to ask about my self-defence classes. One lady was particularly interested in the Women’s Self Defence course that I ran back in 2010; she wanted to allay her fear of violence by learning some practical self-defence skills. I was a bit tickled to hear that people of Rotorua were still talking about my martial arts and self-defence classes and seminars from two years back.

I advised the lady seeing that Indomitable Mind Body Combat Academy no longer operates in Rotorua I would be more than happy to organize some private training if she travelled to Auckland. From the phone conversation I got the feeling that fear of violence was affecting the quality of her life. In my career as an IT consultant I generally do not give much advice over the phone unless I am financially compensated for my valuable time and expertise. However as a martial arts instructor I am always open for a chat and ready to give my time to offer advice. It’s the human element to working with people rather than business enterprises.

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Neighbourhood Broach

The name Trayvon echoes around social networking, the world’s media and on the streets of New Zealand. As a martial artist and former bouncer I think is a sad state of affairs when a 28 year old security guard is unable to whoop a 15 year old youth, unable to take a beating and has to rely on a firearm for protection from an unarmed youth. What is even sadder is that a hoodie wearing African youth buying a can of pop and a bag of skittles instantly comes under scrutiny. This can only be attributed to the aberrant conditioning of a kooky and gung-ho community of a fenced off Florida enclave. To me it looks like a first step down a slippery slope of white only areas and locally sanctioned apartheid.

At times like this I am grateful that our good friend, the USA, has an African American president. Our perception of African and an indigenous people through no fault of our own as Europeans of is conditioned to some extent with an outdated knowledge of colonial times. I see historical articles online of Nazi doctors in Namibia examining African tribes to bring their “science” to human matters. However Nazi science could never replace trained sensibility and human insight. No matter how proud of my ethnicity I have never been able to fully incorporate the fortress of high mindedness of the third Reich and the Afrikaner governments. I have always believed that physical mastery and education are the great engines of personal development and emancipation.

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Fighting Style

Teaching children’s martial arts class today I had one youngster ask me whether I had hurt anyone in sparring or in competition. Two instances that spring to mind are when my axe kick popped my opponent's shoulder and another time when someone fractured their wrist trying to block my roundhouse. I have also suffered injuries with the most serious being a broken arm in a state tournament. Injuries I guess are inevitable, however Taekwondo is a fairly safe sport considering the objective is to score points with full contact kicks to the body and head. In Taekwondo most of the time if one gets hurt it is normally the result of an accident.

Unfortunately in any sport injuries are a part of life. However many injuries that I have seen in martial arts come about just from training and practicing stunts and tricks. I have seen one youngster break his arm after falling when performing a flying side kick. I still wince when remembering the time when my toe stuck out at right angles attempting to break a board with a jumping spinning roundhouse kick or the time when someone snapped my finger trying to break a piece of wood. Club training should brings about a relief from the hectic striving of the conscious rat race and free one into state of aesthetic bliss. In sparring we are playing a sport we are not fighting. Fighting is something that is done outside the training hall when the need to defend arises. If I see anyone going in too hard or trying to hurt or injure their partner in sparring I impose myself on that person with power. Being a martial artist is about developing balance. Having style is a unique human quality, when I observe a student using a technique; it is almost like a characteristic signature of that person. Relaxing and enjoying the sparring experience enables one to develop their style and avoid hurting themselves or their partner. In the sport of Taekwondo the targets are very well defined by the chest protector and head guard. Being able to visualize the sport fighting targets makes the sparring and kicking drills much more effective and realistic. Kicking to the low section and punching to the face is not allowed. Those who want to train specifically for self defence I recommend my Krav Maga classes where I cover techniques against every possible target area in detail. Knowledge is power rings very true in martial arts but most importantly is the experience to keep that knowledge alive. When the instinct is vivid there is a much better chance of being able to survive and win.

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4805 Hits