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20

Traditionally, in times of war you teach the right hand. In times of peace, you teach both hands. I train in a Chinese school, and Chinese schools typically favor ambidextrous training ... if you have the time. In my case, I find myself freely using either hand in simple, day-to-day life tasks. This happens without thinking. I find that movements that show ...


15

Define "adept." You aren't going to find much in the way of scientific studies that are specific to martial arts in this regard. There are too many variables, and we encounter many of the same problems that the fitness community does. To add a data point, however: With my group's Hapkido, we're taught to use both because it is a self defense martial art ...


10

Very interesting question. Having long been fascinated by body language and micro expressions, I incorporated that into my training. This won't even remotely be an option for most people as the time it took to even develop a functional use when not under pressure was well over a decade. That said, a few tips that came from that training that have been of ...


10

You should practice techniques on both sides. That being said, most of the time you're going to use your dominant side, so you should practice that the most, but more often than you expect, the opportunity is going to come up where a non-dominant side technique will allow you a decisive score or perhaps even a victory, so never discount the possibility. ...


7

if teacher or the student aren't available and the pace of the class doesn't allow for questions (and your partner doesn't want to listen to you) - just do the drill the best you can (if there are no safety concerns); consider this to be one more challenge; later (after the class) ask sensei what to do if this happens again.


7

I was taught a drill by a Systema friend that may well be this one. I really liked it, because it allowed for mistakes and for development of positional understanding. Big for me, more natural for my friend, was development of creativity and free flow. We did not perform that drill in 'slow motion' - we performed it around half speed and with full intent. ...


7

To add one to the list of excuses: "If you can do it on your right side, you can do it on your left". This is, of course, completely false. The most simple analysis of this is playing catch, which most will acknowledge as a game of gross motor skill. Have someone lob a dozen balls to you, attempting to catch with your dominant hand; then have them repeat ...


6

Jiu-Jitsu fighter here. Bear in mind that the technique in question can play into this. For example, when escaping from a position where your opponent has a clear upper hand (such as the bottom of the mount), you're less likely to control which side you escape on; you have to look for openings and take what you can. If you're in a dominant position and ...


6

Don't think of it as two sticks; think of it as one stick. The human brain is not good at multitasking. You can only do one thing at a time, but you can do that one thing extremely well. As you get more comfortable with a simple task, you can make it more complex, and your brain learns to understand a more complex combination of movements as a single task.


6

I don't practice Escrima, so you will have to adapt. Practicing both hands starts in your daily life. (See: http://martialarts.stackexchange.com/a/66/65) Generally, be aware of when you are comfortable doing something with one hand, and deliberately trying it with the other hand instead. Examples: Move the computer mouse to the other side. Open doors with ...


6

Two suggestions: First, the answer about "defocusing" is excellent. This is called "soft gaze" in some traditions and explicitly trained in a few. You are engaging the peripheral vision, which gets processed in a different part of the brain. It also bypasses triggering fear. The drill for that can be found in: http://www.navaching.com/hawkeen/nwalk.html ...


6

To add to Trevoke's answer: this drill will easily expose a beginner's tendency to avoid making contact. If I find my partner starts veering a punch away from me, or punching in a way that won't make contact if I do not move, then I simply do not move. Sometimes, the partner is afraid to make contact. I usually demonstrate the speed and intent. I do it to ...


5

This is not scientific, nor a quote from a famous martial artist, but I've noticed during sparring that my seniors pick up very quickly on what is my dominant side and use it effectively to their own advantage. I would expect the same thing to happen in a prolonged real-life fight with an experienced opponent. Alternatively, in an emergency situation, you ...


5

Flow drills. You work with a partner each exchanging one strike and one block. So one will throw a punch, you block, return the punch with the same hand they did, they block, punch, flow...Start slow, build up speed. This will train to build an automatic response to that one particular attack. Make sure to do with good form, look at your opponent's ...


5

Since footwork more or less determines reach, drills related to that will give good guidance. Further, while analysis works well during training, is too slow at speed. People jerk away or move too slowly because they react to artifacts of the mind. Such a drill has to address that. There's a fun drill where you only use footwork to step and evade incoming ...


5

From a street fighter. I'm right-handed, 6'1, and 160 lbs. Like the others I have no scientific facts to support my claims other than experience. In real fights, you are typically (if not the aggressor) in the position of defense; if you survive you win. If you are on the offense, total submission is required to call it victory. It has been my experience ...


4

Yes. If you are in a kata-based art, practice your least-favorite kata until you start noticing it pop up in your daily life (opening doors a certain way, stepping to dodge someone in a crowded area just like in the kata). You pick your least-favorite because it is most likely to move you out of your comfort zone. Don't force it though. As you practice, ...


4

I'm a big guy. I had a hard time with this. What really helped me was when the instructor (by happenstance) saw me doing this. Do the technique wrong, start pushing to get it right, keep pushing harder. How he helped me was: I was taught the phrase, "If you are "trying" to do it, you are doing it wrong." He watched me, and as soon as my instinct said ...


4

As far as turns overlapping, it doesn't matter as much. The drill eventually gets to a free-flow, but the goal is to move slower than your opponent to force yourself to move (and think) more efficiently. In other words you can wait until after the opponent lands before initiating your movement. Does that happen when someone tries to hit you? Yep, ...


4

In the context you've given I would do the following, based on my rank and experience relative to my partner. I'm setting aside safety issues and presuming nothing I'm suggesting here leads to danger. If the other person clearly outranks me, (or has much more experience if ranking isn't a big thing in your art): This person is definitely my superior and I ...


4

The primary reason why people bang up their limbs (arms, legs, elbows, knees, and head) is to be able to lessen the pain of the impact. Secondarily, by lessening the pain, the body is able to make mechanical adaptations to improve the power of the strike. First with regards to the pain lessening... While I do believe this does deaden the nervous system's ...


4

Not all nerves do the same thing! So, here's a thing: not all nerves do the same thing, and you can deaden the pain nerves without losing movement sensitivity. Movement sensitivity is primarily from proprioception, much of which the nerves that you'd be using measure the length of your muscle spindles and how fast they're being contracted/lengthened. ...


3

With empty-hand, I usually do the following exercises to get people used to distancing differences. I simplify it and do just "one" range - which should map pretty well to your situation. The student stands still, and I do the striking. Every strike is preceded with a question like "Can I hit you from here?". Variations on the question will become obvious ...


3

I was at Rory Miller's seminar. Here is a short video of this exercise. This is a group version of the drill, but we spent hours doing the couples versions. I found this drill to be amazing. I'm a (novice) student of Ninjutsu, and I've never being able to apply locks in a Randori. Moreover, I've never seen locks applied by anyone else - The Randori always ...


3

The best way is for them to feel those locks done to them with that minimal amount of pressure. Otherwise, I remember reading this idea for push hands which may be useful: We do push hands with force - because the simplest way to get to the real push hands drill is to be too exhausted to do it wrong. So, if the students are too tired to put the force ...


3

I mostly agree with Ho-Sheng Hsiao's answer. The only real difference in how we do things is that we tend to practice offhand first, though we tend to do both in the same session back-to-back, but everything else fits with my experience on training coordination between the hands. I did want to add the following, since it is how I do this with two sticks: ...


3

Like David H. Clements says in his answer, scientific studies on effectiveness are probably rare, but there is evidence that athletes in general that train a certain movement exclusively on one side (e.g. tennis players or pole vaulters) have a high risk of developing injuries caused by an inbalance in muscle strength. When one side of the body becomes ...


3

Very good question. Actually, the situation in Aikido for example is very schizofrenic. The master insisted on that we must train both sides, especially the weaker one - for falls, all the techniques, jo, etc... Which I consider very good. But when it came to bokken, only right hand had to be dominant! Just because it was a tradition of how to use it. ...


3

Knee instability is usually as a result of one of two things - You either have a pre-existing injury that is contributing to the instability, or you have muscle weakness that is contributing. (This is assuming no congenital defects). For the first, you may have to supplement with braces and/or corrective surgery. While you can protect the area with proper ...


3

Try these footwork patterns: Stepping forward in a low bow/front stance as you push the broom, alternating legs. It will be a challenge to actually effect the sweeping while doing this. Fighting stance: step back foot together with front foot, step front foot out to fighting stance. Do right foot forward going one way, left foot forward coming back. ...



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