Last Saturday, I stood in the dojo, watching a couple of hopeful future black belts spar.  These were some young guys so they had natural talent like crazy but both had never been pushed hard enough to dig down into the well of fortitude. 

The shorter of the two guys, kept crowding the taller, which is the prescribed method for getting inside on a taller guy and making life rough.  The shorter sparrer would get inside and go to swinging, not necessarily calculated or precise, but just swinging and by sheer volume of punches would bang up the taller guy every time.

Then things begin to turn a little.  The bigger guy figured out he could touch his opponents ear with his shin and instep, which is beautiful.  This taller guy would throw this round kick on the taller guys exit from the pocket and just touch the guy hard enough to let him know it was there. 

The shorter guy didn’t like that so, he intensified his rush, upon which the taller guy evidently said to himself, ‘It worked once, let’s try it again.’  BAM!  It worked again, but the shorter guy continued his direct line inside the pocket despite getting hit in the ear.  It didn’t faze the shorter follow. 

The taller guy kept touching him with his round kick in the ear, the shorter guy didn’t block it or evade it, he’d just take it and barrel forward. 

The reason the shorter guy kept barreling forward in spite of being hit was…

He wasn’t being hit hard enough. 

I told the taller fellow, ‘You gotta turn your hip over to rock him some.’  The taller guy nodded as though he understood, but he didn’t.  He kept kicking, but kicking was it, not effective kicking.  I’m not sure if he was afraid to commit or was just being nice. 

In life sometimes we take a hit, but if the hit isn’t hard enough to knock of off course we don’t acknowledge it.  Which is what this smaller feller was doing. 

It’s amazing though how little it takes for most people to get knocked off course.  The next time you get hit with a shot, you may need to evaluate if it’s really enough to knock you off course. 

As a combatant trying to run a good race and finish strong, defense is important, but having gumption and focus on your intent is even more important.  My smaller guy had the unwavering gumption in his intent.

The taller guy just wasn’t turning his HIP over!

Learn to turn you hip over


Keep Kicking and God Bless.