Friday, March 6, 2015

Bad mechanics

I was exchanging ideas with Rory earlier this week, and he mentioned something about a seminar he'd been with one of those "reality" styled MA, and he mentioned a technique that was trying to do too much of an effort, at a weird angle, to try something that was supposed to be time-critical to save your life.

A tad abstract, I know.

Now, imagine that technique I spoke of earlier [*]. That's the original source, undiluted. And yet...

Uke's right hand? It's there for a reason. And while it may stay put and keep trying for a lapel grab and a headbutt, it could as easily go behind the neck (ask any judo or Muay Thai competitor), or up your ear. Specially once it feels some opposition. In the original version of the technique, there's nothing preventing that. Or an elbow sidestriking your head. No, that arm there doesn't have the structure to deal with an incoming elbow, sorry.

Now, personally, I'd always pictured "bad mechanics" to refer to stances, structures... And I'd have classified things like that in the mental category. Bad tactics, kind of. Using Rory's definition makes sense, though. You have, as almost always with him, to expand your definition, give it an extra layer of abstraction. "Bad mechanics" becomes not only the lack of physical properties but also the lack of understanding of the use of them. A proper forward stance is useless against an attack from the back [+]. So, developing such a stance in the bad situation is "bad mechanics". It is, the moment you consider the understanding of those mechanics part of them itself.

Which opens a whole new can of worms. Because if the understanding of the proper mechanics, the right moment to use them, is what makes for shitty mechanics, then most of us have those.

Take care.

[*] If the link works weird, try the technique that starts at about 2:03. Check two posts back if you don't know when I spoke of it.

[+] A tad sidewise, maybe. Many classical stances lean a tad to the side of your opponent. There are some advantages to that, but also dangers. The most warning I've heard about those is the omote/ura classification in koryu. The most is, yes, a classification.

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