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Old 04-08-2001, 11:54 AM   #1
tedehara
 
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I've seen many discussions on this and other forums, concerning the effectiveness of aikido and/or various other martial arts, on the street. In a REAL confrontation, how would aikido stack up against some drunken, steroid-taking, bad guy? After researching this topic, I believe I have a possible answer.

Quote:
from Street Fighting: American's Martial Art, "How to Hire and Use Muscle"

While I have always believed in fighting your own battles whenever possible, there are times when you are outclassed. No matter how well you learn to fight, there is always going to be somebody bigger and tougher: somebody you can't take. If you run up against this person in the street you're going to lose. If such a person decides to beat you up, to mug you, to attack you, then he has a definite advantage over you. Unless you are Superman, there are plenty of people who fit this category. And sometimes you will simply be outnumbered. Chances are that your attacker will be somebody who has sized you up and knows damn well that you don't have much of a chance against him.

The way you can beat this is to bring in someone bigger and badder against him. This makes it a whole new ball game; the odds are not on his side anymore - they're on yours. If your business takes you into a rough part of town, or you have to deal with belligerent characters in some way, then there is just no substitute for muscle. Not everyone is six feet, four inches tall or weighs 250 pounds, but if you have a muscleman approaching this size then you've pretty well got everybody licked. When you hire muscle, either to get something done, for protection, or for settling accounts, whatever the case is, then your advantage is instant. You don't have to build yourself up or build muscles or get a dog. All you have to do is get somebody you can depend on. If you've got the money, he's got the time, and money talks. It screams! With it you can get a lot of things accomplished. When somebody knows he's getting paid for a job, he will do a lot of things for you. There is a tremendous amount you can accomplish, even against your next-door neighbors.
This quote reminds me of a story the late George Simcox Sensei told. He was traveling around and visited a small ju-jitsu dojo. This small dojo had an even smaller class, since three of its members were currently in jail for assault (aka fighting). Something the instructor was apparently proud of.

However Simcox Sensei ended the story by asking "Why are we teaching people the martial arts? What kind of society are we building?"

To those questions I'd have to add:
"What type of martial artist do I want to become? What do I need to do to help me towards my goal?"

I'm sure everything suggested in Street Fighting will probably work quite well. However I am also glad that I am not the author's next-door neighbor.

It is not practice that makes perfect, it is correct practice that makes perfect.
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Old 05-21-2005, 10:23 AM   #2
Aragorn
Dojo: Aikido of Marin
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Re: Street Fighting

(if you will exscuse me, i will talk to the author)
Muscle isn't everything. If a big muscle man walks up to you and swings a punch, you can just do a simple dodge and pull the arm down. It works. So muscle doesn't always help you. Weapons don't help you all the time either. I agree that evauntlly you will find a bigger tougher guy. Then you can either (1) Run Away (2) plead for your precious life or (3) Take the chances and fight


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Old 05-21-2005, 08:31 PM   #3
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Street Fighting

Not so sure about the muscle idea. Though it works in many situations for intimidation factor and pure power if it comes to it, most folks who encounter the muscle man will simply get some muscle of their own. Or just take him out from a distance. This is the age of guns after all. From personal experience the muscle guy better have some training (and probably weapons) to back it up, else he just makes a much bigger corpse when the stuff really hits the fan.

Hiring muscle has its benefits but it is far from a cure all for personal protection.

Just my 2 cents.
LC

--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
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Old 05-22-2005, 09:42 AM   #4
Aragorn
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Re: Street Fighting

Isn't that a little more than 2 cents?
lol
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Old 05-22-2005, 11:09 AM   #5
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Street Fighting

Quote:
Liam Smith wrote:
Isn't that a little more than 2 cents?
lol
Regards,
Well with the current exchange rate it may be about 13 cents.

Yours.
LC

--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
http://www.tntaikido.org
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Old 05-22-2005, 12:12 PM   #6
Matt Molloy
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Re: Street Fighting

Ancient saying when going up against really big people.

"When his hands are on a level with your head, his groin is on a level with your teeth."

Just another version of "The bigger they are...."

With apologies to Terry Pratchett.

Cheers,

Matt.
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Old 05-22-2005, 08:46 PM   #7
aikidojones
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Re: Street Fighting

Anyone who quotes Terry Pratchet is OK in my book. I just got done reading Nightwatch. Awesome read. Brings you to tears. Anyway, I agree that we should be engaged in a discussion of what we want the martial arts to become rather than hashing out the tired old argument over what makes for the best "fighter." Let's focus instead on what makes the best person. If self defense capabilities area a happy side-effect, so much the better.

-Brian Jones
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Old 05-23-2005, 12:16 AM   #8
Sanshouaikikai
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Re: Street Fighting

I'm all about being a better person...however...why the frig are you going to pay (insert amount of dojo tuition here) to become a better person...when you can just go to church? I think the martial arts were meant to make you a better person in the sense of having self control and being disciplined and first and foremost to defend yourself, family, and country. The latter was the primary objective. The other stuff came after it got all systemized and what not.
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Old 05-25-2005, 01:27 PM   #9
Drew Scott
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Re: Street Fighting

Quote:
Alan M. Rodriguez wrote:
I'm all about being a better person...however...why the frig are you going to pay (insert amount of dojo tuition here) to become a better person...when you can just go to church?
Because I feel that MY path to being a better person is in the dojo, not in a church.

What's my focus on the mat? Martial effectiveness.

WHY do I walk onto the mat? To "become a better person".

I don't think those are incompatible principles. The first gives me a set of tools, the second helps me find the wisdom to know how, why and when to use those tools.

Alan, not to single you out, but my understanding of your post is that you primarily train so as to be better able to "defend yourself, your family, and your country". You value being able to defend those people and principles, and therefore you are making yourself a "better person" by training to be able to do so (and I am inclined to agree).

I applaud your efforts to become a "better person" through Aikido training. Most of us are trying to do the same.

Regards,
Drew
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Old 05-25-2005, 03:18 PM   #10
Sanshouaikikai
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Re: Street Fighting

This is in regards to Drew:

Whoa...that's true! LOL! However...I was refering more to the spiritual aspect of it in regards to me saying that you shouldn't have to pay to go to church or w/e, you know? But yeah...good point you brought there about people training to be a better person at what they do (in my case defending myself, family, friends, and country).

Last edited by Sanshouaikikai : 05-25-2005 at 03:21 PM.
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Old 05-26-2005, 07:01 AM   #11
Tim Gerrard
 
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Re: Street Fighting

I've found this method quite effective. 'Dealing with larger opponents 101'
(Works best on opponents greater than 6'2'' and 250lb)

Wait until your attacker closes to between 5' to 3'. Then as he opens his mouth to ask for your wallet, wedge a small set of stepladders into his open mouth, rendering him helpless. Thus allowing you to make your escape.
If, however you are on the street and a set of stepladders are hard to come by, then a bedside cabinet or computer table should be just as effective.


Last edited by Tim Gerrard : 05-26-2005 at 07:04 AM. Reason: Grammer, cos I'm a moron....

Aikido doesn't work? My Aikido works, what on earth are you practicing?!
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Old 05-26-2005, 09:36 AM   #12
Drew Scott
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Re: Street Fighting

Offer to buy him/them beer. If they accept, buy them beer until they're too drunk to fight. If they refuse, yell "lookitthat!" and run when they turn to look.

I mean, really... if they refuse free beer, how smart can they be?

--Drew
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Old 05-26-2005, 04:49 PM   #13
jsm
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Re: Street Fighting

funny (well maybe not) story.

True story. There's a guy that grew up in the town I did, we'll call him Jim. He was a few years older than me. Anyway he's a very large guy, 6foot 6 or better and fairly stocky. A few years ago he got into a fender bender with some little guy that turned into a road side argument. The "little guy" was by account, below average height around 5foot 6 or so. Well, out of nowhere in the middle of the yelling match the little guy jumped up and punched Jim so hard he broke his jaw . Jim woke up on the side of the road some time later and the "little guy" was nowhere to be found. Size doesn't always matter.
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Old 06-12-2005, 06:39 PM   #14
SupremeWarlord
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Re: Street Fighting

Quote:
Alan M. Rodriguez wrote:
I'm all about being a better person...however...why the frig are you going to pay (insert amount of dojo tuition here) to become a better person...when you can just go to church? I think the martial arts were meant to make you a better person in the sense of having self control and being disciplined and first and foremost to defend yourself, family, and country. The latter was the primary objective. The other stuff came after it got all systemized and what not.
I would like to point out that most of the people that go to church are old ladies. Most aspiring budoka spend their free time with other budoka. But, I do go to church. If it came down to it I would decide to go to a dojo rather than church.
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Old 06-13-2005, 10:54 AM   #15
rogueenergy
Dojo: Aikido of Lincoln
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Re: Street Fighting

Quote:
Alan M. Rodriguez wrote:
I'm all about being a better person...however...why the frig are you going to pay (insert amount of dojo tuition here) to become a better person...when you can just go to church? I think the martial arts were meant to make you a better person in the sense of having self control and being disciplined and first and foremost to defend yourself, family, and country. The latter was the primary objective. The other stuff came after it got all systemized and what not.
Most of the people I know that attend church on a regular basis wind up paying for it. They just call it service and tithe.
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Old 06-13-2005, 11:10 AM   #16
bkedelen
 
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Re: Street Fighting

No matter how much ki, muscle, or other power you develop, you still drop from a head shot. I have yet to find a martial art that will allow you to engage in "real life" combat with modern warriors. Any gang banger can take you down without a second thought. Better find another way to make your training meaningful.

Last edited by bkedelen : 06-13-2005 at 11:16 AM.
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