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Thread: Action and reaction

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Baltimore, Maryland
    Thanked 113 Times in 95 Posts

    Default Action and reaction

    I was just reading through Infinite insights Vol.4 event though I should be studying for Biochemistry lol. In there I found a really good story that I heard in one of Mr. Parkers seminar's about the Chinese fan. He used this story to prove that reaction can be quicker than action. This is how it goes:

    "A salesman on a buisness trip to San Francisco concluded his day's work and decided to go to Chinatown to purchase a few items for his daughter--suvenirs to commemorate his trip. One of the items he purchased was a beautiful Chinese fan of delicate workmanship. His daughter was elated with the gift, but after a weel of use the fan broke into pieces too small to repair. KNowing he would soon return to San Francisco to conduct futher buisness, the salesman gathered the pieces of the fan and packed them in his suit case. He was anxious to confront the Chinese proprietor and hand him the fan and demand a refun. When he saw the proprietor he placed the pieces in his hand and requested a refund. The proprietor examind the pieces and asked the salesman what he had paid for the fan. The anser he gave was fifty cents. The proprietor retorted "When you purchase fifty cent fan, you must place fan in front of face, hold fan very still and move head very fast from left to right. ONly when you purchase dollar fan can you keep your head still and use hand to fan yourself"."

    He than whent on to say:
    This story brings out a very valid point. When a punch is thrown to your head keep your blocking arom still as if it were the fifty cent fan. Do not attempt to block with it, but keep it from moving. Instead, move your head away from the punch. Here is the logic involved--if you move the last point of contact (your head) out of the way first, your reaction can beat your opponents action
    "To hear is to doubt. To see is to be deceived. But to feel is to believe." -- SGM Ed Parker

    "Sic vis pacem parabellum - If you want peace, prepare for war." -- "The Punisher"

    "Praying Mantis, very good. . . For catching bugs." --Jackie Chan

    "A horse stance is great for taking a dump" --Jet Li

  2. #2
    SifuDangeRuss is offline
    Adv. Green Belt
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    The Soggy Pacific Northwest
    Thanked 152 Times in 78 Posts

    Thumbs up Re: Action and reaction

    Anytime you can use a chinese parable to illustrate and validate a martial concept. I'm SOLD!

    This is not only a valid point, but a humorous, memorable and painless way to relay the idea.

    It was examples like this, that have inspired me over the years to use this technique in teaching obscure or sophisticated principals. It works, because you can easily visualize the Cheap Fan and waving your head back and forth. This helps to firmly embed the idea into your head. Very visual analogies help in both recall and retention.

    Perhaps we should begin a new thread discussing various Visual Analogies or Stories we use for this purpose?
    NEW and IMPROVED Non-Chunky Version!


    I only know enough, to understand how much I don't know

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Orlando, Florida
    Thanked 1,520 Times in 909 Posts

    Default Re: Action and reaction

    This concept is why we "step back" initially in a lot of techniques. The idea is that if the trajectory, or angle of entry of the weapon is say coming from 12:00, and we move the target, say our head for instance, away from the action say towards 6:00. This buys you some time to react. It's pure logic...move away from the weapon instead of staying static.

    You're not really "beating the action." You're actually buying some time to react and giving yourself a buffer zone. The only true way to actually beat action is to anticipate it before it occurs...I don't know about you, but I failed Mind-Reading 101.

    In all seriousness, you can learn to read body language and that can help to "beat" action. For instance, a lot of people drop thier shoulder prior to punching. If you learn to look for this you can anticipate the punch and more effectively defend against it. But here again, an action occured first. You just bought yourself some time by learning that the first action prior to a punch is often the attacker dropping thier shoulder.

    I hold that it's possible to anticipate action. Reaction, by definition, is a result of an action occuring. Therefore, you can not react (first or otherwise) without some sort of action first taking place. Hence, action beats reaction. But that does not say by any means that you can not successfully react or "beat" the action in those terms. IMHO, it simply means that with proper training your reactions can overcome an attackers actions.
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." Charles A. Beard

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