I just want to quickly go over some key points that Doug Marcaida touches on…
"If everybody is keeping it simple right, then what makes my simple better than your simple? The fact that I can be complex. Now, if I can make my complex simple, then my simple is going to be better than your simple". GOLD! You hear about how in a beginners mind there are many possibilities, but in an experts mind there are few. Well here it is! We should all learn how to make our complex simple. When I was going through the karate ranks I became too complex and forgot how to be simple again. It wasn’t until I left my style, went to Kyokushin and became a white belt again, that I learnt to make what I learnt simple, and Doug explained it so brilliantly!
"So this looks all very, a little complicated and complex but what would be the reality be after that first strike to that face?" - "In Kali we do dynamic training, you see us hit ten times, overkill, no, I have one training partner, ten different targets" - Remember this! Ten different targets not only relates to ten targets on the body but what if you have ten opponents? Unlikely but let’s say you end up with two or three?
"Always understand your laws" - Great advise. When I was teaching I always told the guys to understand the New Zealand law system. Unfortunately (and fortunately) ‘self-defence’ here in our country can get you into more trouble than then actual perpetrator. We taught our guys safe extraction techniques. One of them, Mitchell is a good fighter, can hold his own against anyone, but one night on the town one of this friends got into a fight with a few people in a crowded club. Mitchell knew they had to get out of there instead of getting into a fight, so Mitchell bear hugged his friend from behind, ran him to the nearest exit, dragged him to the their vehicle and drove around the block. If things were different, and say Mitchell hit someone in self-defence, and possibly put the guy in hospital, or worst killed him, in this country, he would’ve be done for secondary murder or man slaughter, and sent to prison, and the fact that he was trained to fight would’ve have made things worse.
In reference to Filipino arts - “our arts, relegated to the parks to their backyards and to hidden places that nobody frequents because you know it’s not supported”, I’m guilty of starting in a nice dojo with flash gear, and everything like that, but it wasn’t until I went to Kyokushin, in some slightly rundown hall, and then training with my fight coach in his garage where he had his puppies, and drying his family clothes, that I realize what we were learning and doing was real. No mod-com or anything like that. You don’t need a flash building and I’m not saying that having a flash building makes what you do not real, what you should truly look for is how the instructors care about their students. At Hutt Valley Dojo we train hard, very hard. We get yelled at a lot and told off for anything, but when someone gets injured, hurt or ends up in a difficult position, then our trainers become worried, and start checking up on us and making sure we’re been taken care of. I know if I needed to, I could call my fight coach up at 2 am in the morning, wake him up and talk to him if I needed.
Lastly, I believe it doesn’t matter what you’re training in; Karate, Kali, TKD, etc. All these beautiful moves and thinking are in your training. You will find if a Karate-ka went to learn Kali, they would see Kali in Karate, and Karate in Kali. Judo in Karate, Kali in Crav Maga, the use of the Jo in Maori Taiaha.
Don’t get comfortable with what you already know, get curious with what you don’t.