Please take a look at Articles on self-defense/conflict/violence for introductions to the references found in the bibliography page.

Please take a look at my bibliography if you do not see a proper reference to a post.

Please take a look at my Notable Quotes

Hey, Attention on Deck!

Hey, NOTHING here is PERSONAL, get over it - Teach Me and I will Learn!

When you begin to feel like you are a tough guy, a warrior, a master of the martial arts or that you have lived a tough life, just take a moment and get some perspective with the following:

I've stopped knives that were coming to disembowel me

I've clawed for my gun while bullets ripped past me

I've dodged as someone tried to put an ax in my skull

I've fought screaming steel and left rubber on the road to avoid death

I've clawed broken glass out of my body after their opening attack failed

I've spit blood and body parts and broke strangle holds before gouging eyes

I've charged into fires, fought through blizzards and run from tornados

I've survived being hunted by gangs, killers and contract killers

The streets were my home, I hunted in the night and was hunted in turn

Please don't brag to me that you're a survivor because someone hit you. And don't tell me how 'tough' you are because of your training. As much as I've been through I know people who have survived much, much worse. - Marc MacYoung


The postings on this blog are my interpretation of readings, studies and experiences therefore errors and omissions are mine and mine alone. The content surrounding the extracts of books, see bibliography on this blog site, are also mine and mine alone therefore errors and omissions are also mine and mine alone and therefore why I highly recommended one read, study, research and fact find the material for clarity. My effort here is self-clarity toward a fuller understanding of the subject matter. See the bibliography for information on the books. Please make note that this article/post is my personal analysis of the subject and the information used was chosen or picked by me. It is not an analysis piece because it lacks complete and comprehensive research, it was not adequately and completely investigated and it is not balanced, i.e., it is my personal view without the views of others including subject experts, etc. Look at this as “Infotainment rather then expert research.” This is an opinion/editorial article/post meant to persuade the reader to think, decide and accept or reject my premise. It is an attempt to cause change or reinforce attitudes, beliefs and values as they apply to martial arts and/or self-defense. It is merely a commentary on the subject in the particular article presented.

Note: I will endevor to provide a bibliography and italicize any direct quotes from the materials I use for this blog. If there are mistakes, errors, and/or omissions, I take full responsibility for them as they are mine and mine alone. If you find any mistakes, errors, and/or omissions please comment and let me know along with the correct information and/or sources.

“What you are reading right now is a blog. It’s written and posted by me, because I want to. I get no financial remuneration for writing it. I don’t have to meet anyone’s criteria in order to post it. Not only I don’t have an employer or publisher, but I’m not even constrained by having to please an audience. If people won’t like it, they won’t read it, but I won’t lose anything by it. Provided I don’t break any laws (libel, incitement to violence, etc.), I can post whatever I want. This means that I can write openly and honestly, however controversial my opinions may be. It also means that I could write total bullshit; there is no quality control. I could be biased. I could be insane. I could be trolling. … not all sources are equivalent, and all sources have their pros and cons. These needs to be taken into account when evaluating information, and all information should be evaluated. - God’s Bastard, Sourcing Sources (this applies to this and other blogs by me as well; if you follow the idea's, advice or information you are on your own, don't come crying to me, it is all on you do do the work to make sure it works for you!)

“You should prepare yourself to dedicate at least five or six years to your training and practice to understand the philosophy and physiokinetics of martial arts and karate so that you can understand the true spirit of everything and dedicate your mind, body and spirit to the discipline of the art.” - cejames (note: you are on your own, make sure you get expert hands-on guidance in all things martial and self-defense)

“All I say is by way of discourse, and nothing by way of advice. I should not speak so boldly if it were my due to be believed.” - Montaigne

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You experience pain in a variety of ways. You have the physical discomfort that ranges from an ache to the kind of pain that cause you to throw up, get dizzy, and pass out. It is caused by either an illness or an injury. Those injuries are where we will discuss pain as it pertains to martial arts, self-defense and fighting.

As to training for pain you will need to differentiate between uncomfortable pain vs. pain that indicates an injury that could be disabling and dangerous. An intense stimuli while being mentally uncomfortable does not denote true injurious pain. Pain also does not mean disabling, disabling is a psychological part of this equation. It has been shown through both the experiences of professionals who deal with violence and pain in their jobs and through research that pain contributes to losing, quitting or being defeated but to succumb to pain is a psychological decision made by the individual experiencing the pain. 

Stubbing your toe to some can be debilitating and to others a minor inconvenience. This can be said about almost any injury, minor or major, to the body. How you deal with pain is important. Pain motivates us to do one of two things. One is allow it to succumb completely to it resulting in inaction and two, ignore it and keep moving. 

Modern society has created a sensitivity to pain that in older times would mean death. Survival means to take the pain and continue actions through it to survive. How pain effects your ability is how you train for pain. You can take the pain that leaves no real injury and use it to train the mind to continue functioning in pain, through the pain and after the pain.

Most of the time pain will be a factor at the beginning of an attack. Predatory attacks, the ones we truly need to defend against, tend to be fast, furious and deal out as much pain as possible. The result is the freeze. If you have trained to endure pain then your sensitivity to pain is dulled to a point where you can act. In an attack such as I describe if you can get past it and the flurry of attacks that keep you in the orient mode you can act. Once you act and once the chemical dump does its thing then you may find that pain disappears - at least until you come down from the dump, the fight or the attack, if you survive.

Some of the psychological factors you should be aware of depends first on how you were trained by your parents and family. Most often your first introduction to pain was when you first fell down, or something similar, and the reaction from family tells a young mind how to act. You are subject to suggestion as well regarding pain. The family reaction tends to encode a certain response through suggestion. 

Then you will find that certain external stimuli will effect how pain works for you. It can be dulled by excitement or distraction. I suspect that distraction is a mental effect of the chemical dump called adrenaline the desensitizes the pain receptors of the body while doing the same to your consciousness. You may be to busy trying to survive to recognize both the injury and pain - until later. The intensity and unpleasantness of pain is regulated by all of these factors but not as much as your psychological perception of pain.

Subjecting yourself to uncomfortable and painful, minus injuries of any serious nature, stimuli can go a long way to desensitize you to pain especially when it is most needed, in self-defense. 

Even in every day life when you bump your shin into a sharp edge how you react and deal with it can contribute to the desensitization toward pain. I find most tend to avoid it at all costs but a martial artists if they truly practice and train the full spectrum of their system will encounter pain of all kinds. 

Just one important thing. This is a post and does not discuss all the aspects of pain, it is just a start to get you interested. The most important aspect is "regulation in training" so that you don't injure your body past acceptable, i.e. bruises, bumps and sprains, etc., levels because it takes considerable time and loss in practice and training when you do injury yourself. 

Sparring involves pain if you are serious and try for realism. Makiwara deals with pain until you inure your body to the training. Shugyo tends to introduce you to pain. Karada-kitei subjects parts of the body, i.e. arms, forearms, shins, etc., to pain and discomfort. 

Working through pain and discomfort inures you to its possible effects and that is teaching your mind to work through it in every instance. Not avoiding activities that are uncomfortable and could result in pain is another way to work through pain. Pain is the bodies defensive system and you should listen but don't allow it to stop you from working through it when that pain is not a result of a grievous injury, etc. 

Look to the kind of damage that causes the pain. One is tissue damage, another is nerve damage, and then there is psychogenic pain. "Psychogenic pain most often has a physical origin either in tissue damage or nerve damage, but the pain caused by that damage is increased or prolonged by such factors as fear, depression, stress, or anxiety. In some cases, pain originates from a psychological condition." - WebMD

Pain can be felt as an ache, a sharp stabbing; or a throbbing pain. It can come and go or remain constant. Somethings an activity can cause it to either intensify or lessen. Nerve pain can be a burning or prickling sensation, i.e. or like an electrical shock, pins and needles or stabbing sensation. 

Listening or rather being sensitive to the kind of pain you feel can tell you what damage you are encountering and how to deal with it. Working through pain can be both beneficial and also detrimental to your health, fitness and wellbeing. It can be the difference between simple recovery and continuation of your efforts or result in permanent disabilities that would hinder your efforts. 

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