As I mentioned earlier, I’ve returned to martial arts after a ten year hiatus. I wasn’t good then, and I’m worse now (and definitely more rickety), but oh! how I love it.
One of the things I’m learning at this dojo, which I didn’t learn in my last go round at martial arts (since it was very pure Karate), is basic, fairly brutal self-defense. One of the techniques is called “I don’t want to fight.” To do this technique, you stand in front of your opponent who, presumably, has gotten aggressively right into your face. Your hands are up in the air in a gesture of surrender. You say, “I don’t want,” at which point you grab the back of his head. Then, at the same time that you say “to fight,” you swing your elbow at his face, followed by two groin kicks with your knee.
The gals in my class and I have had a hard time with this one. Even for practice, we don’t like getting into each other’s space, and keep trying to do this from arm’s length — which doesn’t work. The coordination is also difficult, with one quickly going from grab, to elbow punch, to knee kicks. We all realized, though, that I had an even more fundamental problem than coordination and “space” when I practiced the technique with the nice nice lady who was my partner.
It started off well enough when I said “I don’t want” and grabbed her head. It fell apart when, totally without realizing it, instead of next saying “to fight” and hitting her with an elbow strike, I said, instead, “to hurt you,” and complete missed my next hit.
I sincerely hope that, if I ever do find myself in a dangerous situation, I do want to hurt the person!