When working with a partner during a technique or drill, I’ve found that students commonly make it only one sided. One student will attack ridiculously slow and exaggerated, often off angle to the point where the defending student wouldn’t need to do anything and still be able to avoid the attack. This is really bad training for them as they won’t actually learn the important parts of the technique like reaction speed, angle, distance and especially timing. Even more so it is a total waste of time, not just for the one partner working on the defense, but both sides will get nothing out of it…
*Before I go any further, know that safety is important when drilling because you cannot be expected to pull something off at full speed and intention after seeing it only once. A space cushion is usually the best practice and yes slowing down the punch a little in the beginning can help too, however the speed must be increased as the students get the hang of it to help work into real-time application.
**Now this can turn into a really long essay with various tangents, but I’m going to keep the focus of this solely on the attacking side.
Remember, when you are punching (or whatever attack you initiate) you are training too. To throw an empty punch is not only ill-preparing your partner to deal with real-time and aggressive attacks, but you are also wasting your time and energy when you could take advantage and improve your technique. When you initiate your attack, go through the checklist of what your instructor looks for when the fundamental technique is taught. Is the stance correct, did you step, were you supposed to step, are the hips being used, is the waist turning, is your guard up, are you telegraphing your strike, is your chin down, are you too tense, are you too relaxed, are you striking at the best distance/angle????
That’s right, you can improve yourself while training others.
Now, I a not saying you should be a jerk to your partner and change up your attack just to make it successful, I’m asking you to improve the elements of your technique to make it more efficient for when you actually use it. This will benefit both you and your partner so next time you train, train smarter and harder!
*This is a repost from my Tumblr originally posted August 2015