Saturday, April 23, 2011

BOMP - Ch 6 - Efficiency

This year we are discussing the Book of Martial Power (BOMP) on Saturdays.  

He is not only talking about technical efficiency - no wasted motion - here in this chapter.  He is talking about structuring your teaching/learning/practicing system such that it efficiently approaches your goal.  What is the goal?  In this chapter, Pearlman's goal that he says you must approach in the martial arts is The Pure Objective that we discussed earlier.  That is, in any conflict, your victory should be instantaneous, effortless, and perhaps non-injurious to the opponent.  So, an efficient martial system is one that makes the fastest, simplest, most direct approach toward the Pure Objective.
This means that you have to be technically ruthless with yourself.  You might have a technique that is your favorite because it looks cool or because uke makes a loud noise when he hits the ground, or just because it fits your personality - but if that technique gets in the way of, or slows your approach to the Pure objective, then you have to do away with it.  Why?
  1. It takes up part of your finite training time that you could be using to practice things that will get you to the Objective more efficiently.
  2. You want to minimize the amount of stuff that you have to unlearn before you can learn properly efficient technique.
  3. It interferes with your ability to judge your progress.  You think you are improving, while you are just getting better at less useful stuff.
  4. Any technique that does not offer the potential for instant, effortless victory gives the opponent more time and opportunity to act against you - it gives the opponent the initiative.
I'm used to thinking about technical efficiency, as in how many weight shifts does it take to do this move? Can I do the move in fewer weight shifts than the opponent needs to resist it... That sort of efficiency.  But I'm not especially used to thinking about systemic efficiency - how rapidly your training system approaches The Pure Objective.

[photo courtesy of Flibber]

Patrick Parker
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