Its like every time I turn around there’s a challenge match. Recently my younger sister told a guy on facebook she would throw down with him, anytime, anywhere, no holds barred. He made one demand after another. No gloves, ok. No mouth guard, ok, we have to sign a waiver….. yeah dude, we do that all the time. If your not signing waivers your probably not doing anything fun I say!
So here have a small girl, completely comfortable with the idea of a fight with a dude shes never met knowing only that he thinks he has an “unchokeable neck” from his “steel neck technique” and that fighting styles built by monks and mysticism practiced via kata trumps modern MMA. Yeah, this is what our white belts think of your style. Bring it.
Of course he backs out. For some reason these never seem to actually go down…….
But whats the deal here? Why is our crew always trying to throw down with someone, and why has the MMA revolution thats more than a few years old now not overtaken the world of self defense?
One would think after the Gracie’s stomped all over other styles across the globe and with professional mixed martial arts available to the masses on TV that the argument over what makes an effective fighting style would be over. Not so much in some circles it seems. There is still threads of folks stuck in the era of the karate kid and the McDojo who think martial arts are some sort of mystical endeavor where you learn to harness your chia pet to stop a mans heart. Because reasons!
So here’s the thing. We aren’t challenging people to fights, or shooting matches, in order to be tough. Or because we are angry, mean, meat heads, or any other such notion. Its because we are used to working in an environment with resistance. Every day we train we are expected to be able to perform under real pressure. I don’t consider that I truly know a technique until I can perform it against someone resisting it. I don’t ever have the expectation that someone will take someones word that something works, or a video, or a well laid out rational argument, regardless of the source. I believe deeply in personal experience.