Slow Down! You might actually learn something
Why is it so hard to train half speed or as I call it “jogging pace”? Its simple, when you take away the strength and power, all you have left is technique. In hard sparring, you can make up for your technical shortcomings with brute force, toughness, better cardio…. When you take the physical out and leave just the technical, we see the true level of a fighter.
Last night I had a newbie rolling. He was grabbing every limb he could and thrashing like a dog with a bone. I told him to chill out so he could feel what was going on. He actually responded with “I don’t know shit so I gotta go hard coach.” I warned him that going hard without skill is gonna get him hurt. He didn’t mind so I let it go - sometimes you gotta learn the hard way. Literally 5 seconds later he zigged when he should have zagged right into his partners knee which busted him open.
Said newbie, now has a new found respect for hard objects and listens to those that now more than him.
You have to slow down so you can experience things more fully. If you are going 100 miles an hour, you will miss what is flying by. All Martial Arts training is a give and take. I don’t care what you train, there is a level of sensitivity that you need to develop. I am not saying you have to cry when you watch the Notebook, I am saying you have to go beyond seeing techniques and feel what is happening. Every partner and/or opponent gives you the answer to their attacks. You don’t have time to simply see. You need to go with the motion and feel the solutions as they develop.
If you want to be the hammer all the time and only defeat the physically inferior, you are a bully. If you want to learn how the body works and how to apply your trade effectively against just about anyone, you are venturing into the realm of martial arts.
Don’t take all of this wrong and think I am advocating watered down sparring or training. I may be a bit of dick but I am not stupid :) You have to have more than just hard sparring or live rolling 100% to test your abilities. Try to add a day of less power and force but with a higher pace and skill rolling or sparring session. See how long you can go before you devolve into a smash and bash session. If you really want to test yourself - stay cool even when your partner slips into murder death kill mode. Control them and shut them down with technique. If you can stay on point no matter the opponent, you are getting somewhere worth going.
Mix it up and find different ways to challenge yourself.
Back to work!