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ignatzami
5/19/2009 2:46pm,
Inspired by this post: No BS Martial Arts - View Single Post - Video: "Ving Tsun and M.M.A. (freefight technics)" (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showpost.php?p=2127235&postcount=100)

I'm asking a somewhat rhetorical question. At what point does instructor/student contact pass from "pressure testing" to bullying. Obviously consensual sparring between students and instructors should be a fundamental part of training but my question relates more to one sided "pressure" from instructor to student. i.e. an instructor hitting or pushing around students without the students having the chance to cover, or respond.

Thoughts?

What level of contact in your opinion is appropriate? Is there a level that is not appropriate even in sparring? Any experience with bullying instructors? Or ways to deal with the same?

I'm curious what people have been through.

Cougar Spirit
5/19/2009 3:02pm,
Personally, I agree that students need to train as they expect to fight. Varying degrees of contact based on skill level. As they improve and gain experience/technique, then you kick it up a notch. You keep the pressure on and push them, but you do not brutalize them. I even coach them during the sessions and the senior people try to coach them while they are sparring. Of course, over the years I have experienced an instructor or two that went past the line just to prove their superiority...at the time.

Whacker
5/19/2009 3:17pm,
Personally, I agree that students need to train as they expect to fight. Varying degrees of contact based on skill level. As they improve and gain experience/technique, then you kick it up a notch. You keep the pressure on and push them, but you do not brutalize them. I even coach them during the sessions and the senior people try to coach them while they are sparring. Of course, over the years I have experienced an instructor or two that went past the line just to prove their superiority...at the time.

Concur 100%. The mark of a good instructor is one who can not only control themselves at all times, but in a sense "control" the sloppy, flailing student as well. I've never had to fight them at a level beyond what I was capable of, but they will push us. They've also on occasion let us beat the tar out of them while fighting back at a lower intensity while talking us through things, telling us about openings or weak points, reminding us not to drop guard, etc etc.

Edit - More to the point. My personal opinion is that "bullying" would mean an instructor who smacks around his students but never lets them fight back, OR will only fight 100% with them and destroy them during sparring. Instructors or higher level students who crank down hard on lower students for amusement or for a sense of superiority also fit this criteria. Also, when teachers always need to "win" when sparring against students to ensure they remain in a dominate setting or environment. Lastly instructors who always go very hard on students (to a point beyond a student's ability) under equal fighting conditions but who don't necessarily have malicious or egotistical intent still qualifies, IMO. Most, but not all, of my thoughts are based primarily on attitude. My $0.02.

Foolish
5/19/2009 3:22pm,
Inspired by this post: No BS Martial Arts - View Single Post - Video: "Ving Tsun and M.M.A. (freefight technics)" (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showpost.php?p=2127235&postcount=100)

I'm asking a somewhat rhetorical question. At what point does instructor/student contact pass from "pressure testing" to bullying. Obviously consensual sparring between students and instructors should be a fundamental part of training but my question relates more to one sided "pressure" from instructor to student. i.e. an instructor hitting or pushing around students without the students having the chance to cover, or respond.

Thoughts?

What level of contact in your opinion is appropriate? Is there a level that is not appropriate even in sparring? Any experience with bullying instructors? Or ways to deal with the same?

I'm curious what people have been through.

This is a very subjective question. I think it moves into bullying when the instructor consistently makes the student afraid or even uncomfortable and it is clearly intentional. I haven't been training very long so I have seen only one instructor pull this kind of crap. He didn't last very long before the head instructor told him where to go and how to get there.

Rancid Pantaloons
5/19/2009 3:33pm,
I actually like ruff sparring or whatever you guys wanna call it.

Angry Mandrill
5/19/2009 3:37pm,
At what point does instructor/student contact pass from "pressure testing" to bullying.

What level of contact in your opinion is appropriate? Is there a level that is not appropriate even in sparring? Any experience with bullying instructors? Or ways to deal with the same?

I'm curious what people have been through.

my former instructor hospitalized me twice, once with a broken sternum (my first time sparring, lol) and once with a KO/concussion. i could be wrong, but i'd say that's too much. i don't train there anymore.

he had a pattern with his students, according to which he'd goad them to ever increasing ferocity in sparring, but then retaliate when they actually landed something on him. when he broke my sternum, it was his 'introductory beating' to the fight program, just to let newbs know what his sparring classes were like. i never laid a glove on him.

the K/O concussion came just after i managed to roll through some kinda takedown attempt (hazy on the details) and land in mount with the top of his head against a wall. he couldn't get me off of him, though he tried to buck me into the wall, and i let him up after this became clear. right after letting him up, night night, thanks to a head kick i never saw.

training accidents? don't think so. this was a guy with black belts in several disciplines and i was just a year into my first martial art. i'm no great shakes, and still no kind of fighter compared to my first instructor, but i've now sparred with total newbs on more than a few occasions and never been touched. these weren't accidents. the guy's an asshole.

well, i just wanted to say that. pity party over. commence scornful commentary.

rw4th
5/19/2009 3:42pm,
To expand on this: when is it bullying, and when is it hazing? Is there really a difference between the two?

Tom .C
5/19/2009 3:44pm,
Any instructor who uses pain or humiliation as teaching tools is an asshole. Regardless of his skill as a martial artist. If he continues after you tap or submit, publicly mocks you, or treats you with less than respect, take your money somewhere else.

Whacker
5/19/2009 3:52pm,
Any instructor who uses pain or humiliation as teaching tools is an asshole. Regardless of his skill as a martial artist. If he continues after you tap or submit, publicly mocks you, or treats you with less than respect, take your money somewhere else.

Well said, also really liked how Foolish put it rather succinctly. Any instructor who purposefully cultivates and uses fear is a shitstick.

Beorn
5/19/2009 3:53pm,
the only difference between bullying and hazing is that hazing implies eventually you will be accepted to a higher status, where you can begin hazing others.

I agree with tom that any instructor that tries to humiliate you publicly or just beats on you without stop is probably someone with low self esteem and they are bullying.

Now to be clear, an instructor should beat on his students to a degree, it is how I have learned to defend subs and block my face. An instructor can and should call people out occasionally, it can actually be a great motivational tool. Common sense dictates when it crosses the line.

ChickenBeakFist
5/19/2009 4:02pm,
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_ZTJ_Q5L9XlM/SYr6RToAWKI/AAAAAAAAAEA/Kj9agJraU3g/s320/SenseiJohnKreese.jpg

Unavailable for comment

KO'd N DOA
5/19/2009 4:29pm,
My Judo instructor use to beat and stretch me like I was the rubber man. I never in all those years got a throw, much less a newaza technique.

But he was a 3rd dan, and had 110lbs on me. It was all he could do not to break things. I learned so much from that, as he would stop and point things out.

Later, Anyone within 30lbs felt light and weak in comparison.

A TKD assistant instructor went full-tard on me, my first WTF TKD sparing class. I almost quit, but years later, when we would spar I sure had motivation to hurt him back. Great matches. I pwnd him when he wanted to learn that Judo/ Ju Jitsu stuff. Memories.

Foolish
5/19/2009 4:33pm,
Any instructor who uses pain or humiliation as teaching tools is an asshole. Regardless of his skill as a martial artist. If he continues after you tap or submit, publicly mocks you, or treats you with less than respect, take your money somewhere else.

This is not always true. It is an instructor's, or any teacher's, job to understand what motivates a student. It is quite possible, and probably fairly common, for pain to be a good motivator. There are limits but when I miss a block I want to be hit hard enough to know I really missed it.

Humiliation is never good, but what humiliates a person not be the same from person to person. Mocking some students will get a laugh and an attempt to do better, mocking others will lead to tears.

The only thing here I agree with 100% is that an instructor treating a student with less than respect is a problem, but again, the definition of respect is different from person to person. When I spar my instructor I want him to respect me enough to really hit me. Unless we are working on a specific issue, I want to be beaten badly so I can tell if I am making any improvements. Others want the instructor to always spar at their level.

As I mentioned above, being able to determine what is acceptable and motivational to different students is important to being a good instructor.

It is Fake
5/19/2009 4:38pm,
To expand on this: when is it bullying, and when is it hazing? Is there really a difference between the two?Yes, there was IMO. It got severely perverted so, I see that they really aren't that separable any longer.

ChickenBeakFist
5/19/2009 4:48pm,
To expand on this: when is it bullying, and when is it hazing? Is there really a difference between the two?

It isn't either/or. There are degrees. It all depends on context/intent

Example A:

When I pass a belt test at my club, everyone gets to throw me. One right after the other. Twice.

Example B:

I was walking through my high school campus when I was around 15. Someone yells "Fag!" and I get hit with a full can of soda. It was opened.

If the intent is a little good-natured fun in the name of "esprit de corps" it's hazing.

If the intent is humiliation or harm it's bullying.

Monsieur
5/19/2009 5:28pm,
Any time the instructor uses violence not as a part of teaching process, but as a way to assert and emphasize his status as the authority and alphamale of the group is over the line.

Getting kicked in the head during sparring because you didn't keep your guard up = ok.

Getting slapped in the face because you were standing with your arms crossed (which in china could be interpreted as "I disrespect you") and your (turkish-german) sifu took offense = not ok.