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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Hitting and Getting Hit

Caveat: 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.

This article is mine and mine alone. I the author of this article assure you, the reader, that any of the opinions expressed here are my own and are a result of the way in which my meandering mind interprets a particular situation and/or concept. The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of other martial arts and/or conflict/violence professionals or authors of source materials. It should be quite obvious that the sources I used herein have not approved, endorsed, embraced, friended, liked, tweeted or authorized this article. (Everything I think and write is true, within the limits of my knowledge and understanding. Oh, and just because I wrote it and just because it sounds reasonable and just because it makes sense, does not mean it is true.)

Have you ever been hit? Not sparring hit, nor sport oriented hit but hit, hit hard and solid? Have you ever been hit hard and solid by surprise? What happened? Think back on it, did it actually result in complete and total incapacitation? Or, was it just a freeze due to the surprise nature of that hit, strike or kick?

Self-defense Martial Arts are about physical forceful contact. The level of that force depends on a great deal of factors. If you are going to rely on any form of physical defense regardless of the system involved you will have to endure being hit and you will, in all likelihood, have to hit forcefully in return. 

Before I continue, I want to bring to mind something Rory Miller brings up in his book on Drills, i.e., the three elements of hitting hard. They are, “power generation, power stealing and power conservation.” Power generation is the one most martial artists become familiar with although in application very often they are still missing a component that will actually allow them to generate power enough to get the job done. This is about the utilization of fundamental principles to achieve power. Examples are the sequential locking and sequential relaxing of the muscular and skeletal system while achieving momentum, structure and proper posture to actually generate without bleeding off power. 

To steal power is to use power as presented and generated from our environment. The chief power comes from gravity, i.e., using the adversary’s momentum along with gravity or by itself against the adversary. This can be seen in take downs using locks, etc. to move an adversary centrifugally with his joints, etc., until you have him locked down unable to act or use gravity by taking away his balance and structure using that momentum of falling, much like the drop-step punch, to slam him down against the ground or other obstacle in the environment to get the job done.

When he talks about conversation his explanation takes my principles based power generation to the fuller understanding of preventing power and energy leakage often occurring when you lose your posture, structure or other principle, i.e., when using sequential locking you lock up the muscles, muscling it, that bleeds energy to maintain reducing that energy that you want to transmit to your target/adversary and so on. He reminds us that our skeletal structure along with the interconnecting muscles, tendons and cartilage are sources of energy bleed off by any part not adhering to structure, etc. that weakens the techniques applied such as when the elbow is off alignment to the applied strike, i.e, the fist and wrist align, the elbow is off alignment slightly then the upper arm to the shoulder girdle. The elbow off alignment allows the power generation to fly off line at the elbow resulting in a power loss at the fist, i.e., the fist fails to hit hard, etc. In Okinawan martial systems the term used to help describe this power bleed off is “Chinkuchi.” I refer to it as apply principles efficiently and with structure, posture, etc. Now, back to hitting and being hit. 

We want the ability to hit hard, with power and force. To do so means we have to apply such principles necessary to achieve this goal while transmitting power and force to our targets, it is about achieving the goals of self-defense. Practice becomes important and to practice hitting and being hit is the beginners level. As you progress you will learn and apply all three elements of hitting hard, i.e., power generation, stealing power and conservation of your power by properly applied physics and physiokinetics principle based practice. 

Note: Hint, hint, there is also the necessity of adrenal stress conditioning through reality based stress inducing training and practice. This part is critical to apply all you learn in martial arts and/or self-defense when confronted or surprised by the aggressive, debilitating and OO bounce loop inducing attacks, etc. Think about this, hard.

I quote, “The ideal is that the more power you put in your technique the more solidly you feel forced directly into the ground. No bending, not twisting, no swaying.” Mr. Miller has an exercise that will test your ability to generate power. Martial artists familiar with the Sanchin shime and the concept chinkuchi will understand that exercise when the read it. 

I quote, “If good body mechanics (fundamental principles, i.e., physiokinetic) are used (power generation) and you exploit your weight and/or the threat’s motion (power stealing) there is an enormous amount of force in a decent strike. The only reason most hits are not extremely devastating is because so much power is lost to inefficient structure.”  - Rory Miller, Drills: Training for Sudden Violence

Shu-ha-ri where the first level of “shu” requires you to practice hitting and getting hit. Sparring is perfect as this level since it often involves two combatants hitting and being hit. It is that first step to inuring yourself to the pain of being hit or hitting for that pain is not incapacitating except in accidental cases. 

Shu-ha-ri where the second level of “ha” requires body armor so that the two combatants can hit and be hit harder and harder, to a point. The first and second stage also incorporate various drills and practices where the combatants test out the types of impact, the types of tools such as the fist, open hand or foot, and the types of targets, etc. where efficient maximum effect can be gained through proper application of hitting. 

Seldom, due to safety issues, does one reach a level of “ri” of Shu-ha-ri for hitting and being hit because that means you will go “all out” in attempts to do damage to stop an attack by hitting and enduring being hit in this fashion. Often, this level comes directly from applying self-defense skills in an actual attack, social or asocial in nature. 

The “shu and ha” levels allow you to gain a modicum of experience and understanding on being hit and hitting someone. It is where you can overcome that social conditioning and human instinct to hit where you are not actually doing medium to heavy damage for survival. It is that level that opens your mind to being rude and to taking it to the appropriate level of force necessary for the situation at hand, at any given moment and in any given situation.

If your study of martial arts or the fighting systems of self-defense are of concern then you must hit something for at a minimum of 25% of your training and practice time. That time includes applying the hit and be hit maxim in a reality based adrenal stress condition, etc. To get an idea of how that effects us physically try this:

Dressed in your every day clothing begin warming up. In a warmed condition do the following as quickly as possible with no breaks and not stopping even to catch your breath:

1. Bunny hops back and forth across the dojo floor for two minutes.
2. Pushup as fast and as correct as possible for two minutes.
4. Repeat no. 1.
5. Repeat no. 2.
6. Run for five minutes as fast as possible, if you can, around the entire building that houses your dojo.
7. Hit the heavy bag with your fists, correctly, for two minutes as fast and as hard as you can.
8. Kick the heavy bag with the ball of your foot, while in shoes, as fast as you can, correctly, for two minutes.
9. Repeat no. 1.
10. Repeat no. 2.

Now, without resting do a kata as normally would be done when rested.
When done, spar with a partner as you normally would when in the dojo and rested.

You should experience a lot of fatigue, loss of finer motor control and your kata and drills will lack snap, pop, rhythm, patterns will be off and other such physical results of all the above effort. It will be very difficult.

Here is the rub, you will reach that exhausted state physically in about a fraction of a second when the adrenal flood hits due to fear or anger and a lot of other surprises from what would be an attack on the streets. Like Rory Miller writes in one of his books, “Imagine being hit behind the ear, from the back or back side, etc. and trying to defend from that point. Now add in the above physical results let alone all the mental obstacles that will spike in an instant and that is where you need to practice to and from, hitting and being hit is a start in that direction. 

Read also, “Getting Hit.

Addendum dtd April 14th, 2015 at 14:06 hrs: As Peyton Quinn states in his book there is a glaring issue with hitting and being hit with regard to striking arts training and practice, i.e., you simply cannot strike dynamically and with full power on an unprotected uke, even with some protection, that results in practitioners/students failing to learn how to strike with full power. They may not come to this realization until that first real fight. I would add myself that even makiwara training along with the heavy bag, etc., may help you strike and kick full power but that alone is just not enough when the fight is on, in the streets. 

Primary Bibliography of Self-Defense (Some titles have RBC drills included):
MacYoung, Marc. "In the Name of Self-Defense: What It Costs. When It’s Worth It." Marc MacYoung. 2014.
Miller, Rory Sgt. "Meditations of Violence: A Comparison of Martial Arts Training & Real World Violence" YMAA Publishing. 2008.

Bibliography Articles on Self-Defense/Conflict/Violence

The main page leading to the articles I have chosen as a starting point to attain knowledge of conflict, violence and self-defense is: where you can navigate to the below or you can simply find a title below and click for direct access to the articles. Most of these are actually introductions to the references written by the authors themselves. It is advisable to start here then move on to the more in-depth stuff in their publications. This section will get you a beginning understanding necessary in phase one of learning self-defense. 

I.M.O.P. Principle—Intent, Means, Opportunity and Preclusion
Introduction to Violence: Scale of Force Options
Facing Violence: The Unconscious Stuff-Finding Your Glitches
Violence: What Everyone Needs to Know About Fighting

Secondary Bibliography of Self-Defense (Some titles have RBC drills included):
Ayoob, Massad. “Deadly Force: Understanding Your Right to Self-Defense”Gun Digest Books. Krouse Publications. Wisconsin. 2014.
Goleman, Daniel. "Emotional Intelligence: 10th Anniversary Edition [Kindle Edition]." Bantam. January 11, 2012.
Miller, Rory. "ConCom: Conflict Communications A New Paradigm in Conscious Communication." Amazon Digital Services, Inc. 2014. 
Miller, Rory and Kane, Lawrence A. "Scaling Force: Dynamic Decision-making under Threat of Violence." YMAA Publisher. New Hampshire. 2012
Miller, Rory. "Force Decisions: A Citizen's Guide." YMAA Publications. NH. 2012.
Miller, Rory Sgt. "Facing Violence: Preparing for the Unexpected." YMAA Publishing. 2011.
Miller, Rory. “The Practical Problem of Teaching Self-Defense.” YMAA. January 19, 2015.
Elgin, Suzette Haden, Ph.D. "More on the Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense." Prentice Hall. New Jersey. 1983.
Elgin, Suzette. "The Last Word on the Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense" Barnes & Noble. 1995
Morris, Desmond. “Manwatching: A Field Guide to Human Behavior.” Harry N. Abrams. April 1979.
MacYoung, Marc. “Writing Violence #1: Getting Shot.” NNSD. Amazon Digital. 2014.
MacYoung, Marc. “Writing Violence #2: Getting Stabbed.”  NNSD. Amazon Digital. 2015.
Elgin, Suzette. "The Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense" Barnes & Noble. 1993.
Elgin, Suzette. "The Gentle Art of Written Self-Defense" MJF Books. 1997.
Maffetone, Philip Dr. “The Maffetone Method: The Holistic, Low-stress, No-Pain Way to Exceptional Fitness.” McGraw Hill, New York. 2000
Strong, Sanford. “Strong on Defense_ Survival Rules to Protect you and your Family from Crime.” Pocket Books. New York. 1996.
and more … see blog bibliography.
Jahn, C. R. “FTW Self Defense.” iUniverse. Amazon Digital Services. 2012
Jahn, C. R. “Hardcore Self Defense.” iUniverse. Amazon Digital Services. 2002.

Bibliography of RBC Drills (Some titles have RBC drills included):
MacYoung, Marc. "In the Name of Self-Defense: What It Costs. When It’s Worth It." Marc MacYoung. 2014.
MacYoung, Marc (Animal). “Taking It to the Street: Making Your Martial Art Street Effective.” Paladin Press. Boulder, Colorado. 1999.
MacYoung, Marc. "A Professional's Guide to Ending Violence Quickly: How Bouncers, Bodyguards, and Other Security Professionals Handle Ugly Situations." Paladin Press. Boulder, Colorado. 1996.
Miller, Rory. “Drills: Training for the Sudden Violence.” Amazon Digital Services, inc. Smashwords. 2011.
Quinn, Peyton. “Real Fighting: Adrenaline Stress Conditioning Through Scenario-Based Training.” Paladin Press. Amazon Digital Services, inc. 1996

My Blog Bibliography
Cornered Cat (Scratching Post):
Kodokan Boston:
Mario McKenna (Kowakan):
Wim Demeere’s Blog:

1 comment:

Rick Matz said...

I train in an MMA gym and it was very eye opening from the very beginning.

Yes, my training partners were wearing gloves and not trying to kill this old guy, but still, when they connected, it was quite revealing.

After a month or so of the kick boxing and constant soreness in my joints from the percussion, I've since settled into just training BJJ, which is much easier on this old body.