Several of our Brown Belts (Ikkyu) will be testing for Black Belt in about four weeks. Training at this point becomes more intense – physically, mentally and spiritually.
Two of the ‘Self Defense’ aspects taught to students of Yon Ch’uan Martial arts are:
- Situational Awareness
- Situational Advantage
The first step of self defense is situational awareness. We need to be aware of our situation at all times: location, environmental elements, time of day, who is close enough to you to be a possible threat, etc. I think of it as having our “radar up.” It means using all of your God-given senses to assess your safety at all times. It’s engaging mind, body and spirit.
Here’s how we explained the importance of awareness in one of our martial arts e-books –
“The best way to prepare yourself for real self-defense is to train for real. You could be attacked at anytime, anywhere, by anyone. That’s reality. The FBI reports that almost 1.4 million violent crimes occur in the United States every year. More than 60% of the crimes reported to law enforcement are assaults. Robbery accounts for more than 30%. Forcible rape accounts for more than 6%. Many people across our country are being attacked right now as you read this. Many of them will be surprised by the attack. Most people don’t think it will happen to them, so they never prepare to deal with a serious physical assault.” Martial Arts – The Real Path To Self Defense
Students of Yon Ch’uan Martial Arts are learning some of the best concepts and methods for self defense –
“The key to developing powerful, versatile, effective, self-defense abilities is to understand the internal principles of the six combinations and eight methods. The routine practice of the Yon Ch’uan 15-Animal Kung Fu forms will provide you with awesome awareness and understanding of whole body connectivity. Every aspect of your martial arts capability will improve, including Judo throwing, weapon training and your self-defense abilities.” Yon Ch’uan Martial Arts Black Belt Study Guide
Harmonies of the Five Hearts of Movement Awareness
Being situationally aware means knowing how to use your body in the best way to accomplish the goal of self defense.
“The five hearts are the centers of the two feet (the center point of the arch), the center of the two palms and the center of the top of the head. You must have the feeling of these five points working in unison with the body and joints. Then you will feel strong, balanced and confident in your new movement vocabulary. When you have the benefits of awareness of these five harmonies, then you will have a heightened ability of understanding the Six Combinations Eight Methods principles. You won’t need to focus on technique or anything else, just react according to the specific situation. The real meaning of technique is to move without conscience thought.” Black Belt Study Guide
Being situationally aware gives us the important situational advantage to use the Three C’s of Yon Ch’uan Martial Arts –
“Comprehensive self-defense emphasis must be placed on “contact” with an opponent, and then redirection of the opponent’s force with “control” and “counter” along with appropriate self-defense skills. Movement centered from your mid-line increases speed, power and intuitive awareness of your opponent’s body position. When a student is comfortable with their mid-line yielding and clearing movement they will soon be able to control and counter without hesitation.
Conscious action is extremely slow and cumbersome. Unconscious action is startling fast and effective. Focusing primarily on the whole body sinking and clearing the mid- line eliminates the visual and mental business of the mind, which impedes speed and good martial arts skill level. Slow, even, smooth practice both with the eyes open or closed and the use of a blindfold will also enhance the feel of movement centering. Feel the contact, then interrupt with control and counter with an effective skill.” Black Belt Study Guide