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  1. baby_cart is offline

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    Posted On:
    9/09/2013 11:09am


     Style: ex-BJJ, ex-TKD

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by DdlR View Post
    You remember when I mentioned earlier how difficult it is to explain this stuff to people? Case in point; this is now the fifth time I've stated that the action shown in the OP video is a movement skill exercise, not a self defense technique. I'm going to have to try to be more specific.

    Ryabko isn't role-playing as an attacker and the student isn't demonstrating a defense. Obviously, a two-handed squeeze to the trap. muscles would be an unlikely form of attack, and there would be much better ways to defend against that oddball attack than to collapse down into a squat. I hope that's clear.

    What Ryabko is doing is helping the student to practice the key Systema skill of relaxing and yielding to escape or minimize potential danger. The method he's using in this video is a double squeeze to the trap. muscles; it could just as well be a single squeeze to either trap. muscle, or a thumb thrust into the notch of his throat, or a palm up under his nose, or a forearm shot to one of his thighs, or a punch to his midsection; you get the idea. One of the most basic exercises of this type is for a student to simply stand and practice relaxing and yielding against a whole barrage of these actions in quick succession.

    Again, these are not self defense technique drills; they're exercises to practice the fundamental skill of relaxing and yielding, rather than by tensing up and resisting, which is likely to increase pain and injury.
    So the key Systema skill is yielding and relaxing to pain that includes also removing your structure? And at the instance of pain you buckle your knees to avoid it? At the same time STAYING IN PLACE in range of the attacker?

    Gotcha. As said in the youtube comments: Pavlovian training...


    Quote Originally Posted by DdlR View Post
    By "realistic attacks" in that context I meant drilling simulated attacks that are more realistic than squeezing someone's trapezius muscles. However, this video demonstrates the progression from the type of abstract movement and relaxation drill that I'm talking about, though to more realistic but still simulated attacks. In this type of drill, the "attackers" can use whatever they like; i.e., the attacks are not pre-determined in any way; but they move slowly and don't offer much resistance:



    ... and then that builds progressively to faster and more resistant training with harder contact, etc.:



    One of the books that changed my martial arts life and outlook was 'Becoming a Complete Martial Artist: Error Detection in Self-Defence and the Martial Arts" by Sutrisno and Macyoung. Out of that book, I formulated a self-philosophy when training outside a 'no-assigned attacker' scenario(better known as sparring) that goes: SHITTY ATTACKS MAKES FOR SHITTY DEFENSE.

    However, this video encapsulates what I mean by that saying (this video is not mine):



    Now when looking at videos, I ask: who's the attacker? Is his attack STUPID? If it is, then the defender will not be able to train his defense properly, because one doesn't need the front armor of an M1A1 Abrams tank if all they lob at you are fucking tomatoes.

    And by the videos you presented, majority of it has stupid attacks. The exception is the last video which has no defense techniques being trained, but rather an assault, control and retrain techniques, which by the way, has its place in the military and security fields.
    Last edited by baby_cart; 9/09/2013 11:13am at .
  2. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    9/09/2013 8:04pm

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     Style: Bartitsu

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    Quote Originally Posted by crappler View Post
    As the saying goes, people don't rise to the occasion, they fall to the level of their training, and the simpler the technique, the more likely it is to be executed successfully and remembered. The more times it is drilled, the more likely you are to "remember" it. The only way to "remember" it is by live, pressure-tested training or actual physical combat. Any kind of theory-based crap without the benefit of continual live training is total bullshit. The fact that theory-based crap sits alongside live training doesn't make it effective. I had an incredible Shorin-ryu teacher. A complete badass who would kick the **** out of 90% of you, but he spent oodles of time on the application of the Kata and a bench of esoteric kung fu pressure point bullcrap.
    I did over a year of regular Systema training and oh boy, is it live. I've never sparred so much in any given class, nor been hit so hard and so often, nor from so many weird angles.

    I know what you're saying about muscle memory and, like I said earlier, IMO the System was originally designed as a post-grad-type training method for people who already had years of the more orthodox, repetitive technique-based training and fighting experience.

    My considered opinion, which draws from decades of the latter approach as well as the year of Systema classes, is that all things being equal (good instructors, etc.) both methods can teach solid fighting skills. The KISS muscle-memory approach works *faster* and graduates of the Systema approach are harder to take by surprise.
  3. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    9/09/2013 8:07pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zargor View Post
    This looks worse than Aikido I did, they're dancing and are totally compliant, there's even some of the no touch **** in there.

    Are there any vids with fully resistant, non compliant opponents? Like, true sparring?
    Read what I wrote carefully and watch the videos again, also carefully.
  4. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    9/09/2013 8:21pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by baby_cart View Post
    So the key Systema skill is yielding and relaxing to pain that includes also removing your structure? And at the instance of pain you buckle your knees to avoid it? At the same time STAYING IN PLACE in range of the attacker?

    Gotcha. As said in the youtube comments: Pavlovian training...
    The short answer is that it depends on the aims of the drill. The longer answer involves repeating, now for the 6th time, that the video in the OP doesn't show a self defense technique, Ryabko isn't role-playing as an "attacker", etc.

    One of the books that changed my martial arts life and outlook was 'Becoming a Complete Martial Artist: Error Detection in Self-Defence and the Martial Arts" by Sutrisno and Macyoung. Out of that book, I formulated a self-philosophy when training outside a 'no-assigned attacker' scenario(better known as sparring) that goes: SHITTY ATTACKS MAKES FOR SHITTY DEFENSE.

    However, this video encapsulates what I mean by that saying (this video is not mine):



    Now when looking at videos, I ask: who's the attacker? Is his attack STUPID? If it is, then the defender will not be able to train his defense properly, because one doesn't need the front armor of an M1A1 Abrams tank if all they lob at you are fucking tomatoes.

    And by the videos you presented, majority of it has stupid attacks. The exception is the last video which has no defense techniques being trained, but rather an assault, control and retrain techniques, which by the way, has its place in the military and security fields.
    Here's what I wrote:

    Quote Originally Posted by DdlR
    In this type of drill, the "attackers" can use whatever they like; i.e., the attacks are not pre-determined in any way; but they move slowly and don't offer much resistance.

    ... and then that builds progressively to faster and more resistant training with harder contact, etc.:
    I'm describing a progression building from abstract, obviously-not-technical exercises of the type shown in the OP video, through to improvised but slow, non-resistant "attacks", through to increasingly harder, faster and more realistic training. That's how the System works.
  5. Hadzu is offline

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    Posted On:
    9/10/2013 7:34am


     Style: Shoo Sheetzoo

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    So yielding to pressure is a desired outcome, is the conclusion that I should be drawing? As you so continuously like to point this out, I am of the understanding that this is not a particular SD-technique, but a drill meant to impress a certain response from the person training. The scenario I see before me:

    Joe Schmoe trains Systema, and in one drill he is taught to yield to pressure. At a later date, he is accosted by some nondescript ruffian, who grabs him by the throat. Joe slumps down on the ground, worsening his position and putting the drill he's been taught into practice.

    Now, as reiteration ad naseum seems to be the norm that is being set, I will once again point out that I UNDERSTAND that this is not a particular technique, but it IS definitely a muscle memory reaction that is being imprinted. It is one that, I opine, is stupid outside of very specific circumstances that are unlikely to arise (if your opponent is poking you with a chainsaw, perhaps?).

    /Erik
  6. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    9/10/2013 9:09am

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hadzu View Post
    So yielding to pressure is a desired outcome, is the conclusion that I should be drawing? As you so continuously like to point this out, I am of the understanding that this is not a particular SD-technique, but a drill meant to impress a certain response from the person training. The scenario I see before me:

    Joe Schmoe trains Systema, and in one drill he is taught to yield to pressure. At a later date, he is accosted by some nondescript ruffian, who grabs him by the throat. Joe slumps down on the ground, worsening his position and putting the drill he's been taught into practice.

    Now, as reiteration ad naseum seems to be the norm that is being set, I will once again point out that I UNDERSTAND that this is not a particular technique, but it IS definitely a muscle memory reaction that is being imprinted. It is one that, I opine, is stupid outside of very specific circumstances that are unlikely to arise (if your opponent is poking you with a chainsaw, perhaps?).

    /Erik
    To assume that poor old Joe would "slump down to the ground" suggests an exaggerated extrapolation and misunderstanding of the drill shown in the OP post, as if it was demonstrating a self defense technique that involved crouching to escape a "double trap. grab attack".

    Assuming the worst case that the throat-grab is successful, i.e. that Joe can't evade, block, muffle, deflect, etc., he relaxes and yields to whatever direction the force is coming from - let's say by stepping back and turning slightly - to spare himself immediate injury. He'll then, effectively simultaneously, do whatever he needs to do to protect himself.

    That's the reaction that this type of drill is intended to promote; to relax and yield in whatever direction, when that's the safest way to avoid injury. Is it not obvious that further exercises of this type involve counter-attacks, etc.?
    Last edited by DdlR; 9/10/2013 9:15am at .
  7. Hadzu is offline

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    Posted On:
    9/10/2013 11:18am


     Style: Shoo Sheetzoo

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by DdlR View Post
    To assume that poor old Joe would "slump down to the ground" suggests an exaggerated extrapolation and misunderstanding of the drill shown in the OP post, as if it was demonstrating a self defense technique that involved crouching to escape a "double trap. grab attack".

    Assuming the worst case that the throat-grab is successful, i.e. that Joe can't evade, block, muffle, deflect, etc., he relaxes and yields to whatever direction the force is coming from - let's say by stepping back and turning slightly - to spare himself immediate injury. He'll then, effectively simultaneously, do whatever he needs to do to protect himself.

    That's the reaction that this type of drill is intended to promote; to relax and yield in whatever direction, when that's the safest way to avoid injury. Is it not obvious that further exercises of this type involve counter-attacks, etc.?
    Alright, I feel I am slowly but surely getting a handle on this eldritch training ethic. Now, it seems more like a Judo dojo that practices taking two steps, which can at "advanced levels" be incorporated into the opening for a throw; it seems like an unnecessarily drawn-out approach to learning, which clangs of "can't see the forest for the trees" to me.

    But if I can see a video of this wonderful, alive Systema sparring, where these concepts are put into practice versus a RESISTING opponent who is trying to WIN, I will concede E-defeat and scamper off. I think it'd be *really* cool if Systema really worked, was a serious alternative to any other MA and the king of the RBSD world. I'm trying to see proof of this potential greatness in these videos, but I remain unfortunately unimpressed for the nonce.
  8. Permalost is online now
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    Posted On:
    9/10/2013 11:25am

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I get the concept that they're learning to move around resistance, but why drop all the way to the ground? I though systema was supposed to be a "make them miss by just an inch" sort of approach. Couldn't the guy just slip away from the Vulcan pinch without going all the way to the ground, even if its not an explicit Vulcan pinch defense training session? Isn't the drill strategy generally to move only as much as you have to? I thought that was the lesson behind all the relaxed freeform drills.
  9. OwlMatt is online now

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    Posted On:
    9/10/2013 11:38am


     Style: aikido

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Along the lines of what Hadzu said, the "it's just an exercise" thing works if there's REAL systema around somewhere that applies this principle to realistic combat. But I've never seen it.
  10. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    9/10/2013 12:18pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hadzu View Post
    Alright, I feel I am slowly but surely getting a handle on this eldritch training ethic. Now, it seems more like a Judo dojo that practices taking two steps, which can at "advanced levels" be incorporated into the opening for a throw; it seems like an unnecessarily drawn-out approach to learning, which clangs of "can't see the forest for the trees" to me.
    In past forum debates on this subject, I referred to this training model as "the scenic route". You get to pretty much the same place, with some benefits you may not get via taking the more standard, direct route, but it takes longer.

    Again, as far as I've ever been able to work out via really quite in-depth research into the 20th century history of Russian martial arts, what is generally known as "Systema" today was designed as an advanced skills maintenance course for experienced fighters, and most especially for bodyguards. The idea of teaching it as a stand-alone system for civilian self defense is relatively recent and IMO hasn't been handled superbly well.

    But if I can see a video of this wonderful, alive Systema sparring, where these concepts are put into practice versus a RESISTING opponent who is trying to WIN, I will concede E-defeat and scamper off. I think it'd be *really* cool if Systema really worked, was a serious alternative to any other MA and the king of the RBSD world. I'm trying to see proof of this potential greatness in these videos, but I remain unfortunately unimpressed for the nonce.
    It's always taught, promoted etc. as a self defense/combat training course and there are no tournaments nor even rules for "Systema sparring" apart from "try to still be friends at the end of the class". There's also a very culturally Russian institutional bias against using protective gear, though that's slowly changing. The upshot is that they generally spar without rules, head-gear, mouthguards, gloves etc. and just evolve a kind of instinct about reasonable safety, which morphs into very heavy body contact and lighter or "slower" (pushing) contact to more obviously fragile and vulnerable areas.

    Sparring also tends to be based on self defense/combat/bodyguarding/etc. scenarios, so that rather than fighting 1-on-1 for a submission or points victory, Systema students are challenged to complete a particular task, like separating two combatants or fighting their way past one or several opponents to reach a particular goal. Within the loose "try not to hurt each other too badly" ethos, everyone involved can pretty much do whatever they want. It's the sort of thing you'd associate more with RBSD scenario training than with competitive MA.

    The two videos I posted above are decent examples of the type of sparring I'm talking about, at various levels of resistance and realism; I'll post some more later on.
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