MMA, cinema, the Olympics, and many other factors play into the world of entertainment when it comes to martial arts. You may find yourself moving forward with learning discipline within this world because of it. You may even go to a class because you saw something play out on the small or big screen. There’s nothing wrong with these entertainment options, but if you believe that they are the real world of martial arts, you are missing out on something more important.
The Staged World
Icons of martial arts and movies are not showcasing reality. When you compare crime scene footage you may find online of people that are trained fighters faced with criminals, you will see that they do not have drawn out fights. They neutralize the situation, they call for help, and they do not go back and forth. Compare that to a fight that Jackie Chan may have in his movies and you will realize that it is not real life.
Do people really not know the difference? Yes. People know better, but when you speak with someone about what you’re learning, you will realize that they immediately think that you’re going to study to be this highly trained assassin or something insane. The reality is that martial arts takes on a whole new meaning when you peel away the highlights of what entertainment showcases on a regular basis.
The Back Story
In most stories that you read or see on television you forget to realize that there is a LOT of training that goes into the work that is showcased. Take for example the training of an MMA champion. They work months on end to get that chance of 15 to 20 minutes of fighting in the arena. The home viewer may see 5 minutes of a fight and assume that it is the portrait of true martial arts. The truth of the matter is that the individuals in the arena, especially at the highest levels of UFC have to put in 10 hour days, sometimes more in training alone.
Move to movies, and you will realize that for that 20 minute fight scene Jackie Chan does, there are months of rehearsals, 20 or 30 stunt members working with wires, specialized ropes, and more to help Chan and his opponent look amazing. These can take months to work out, and for that 20 minutes of perfection, hundreds of man hours are put into effect.
If you sign up for a karate class and assume you can mimic what you’ve seen, you’re going to be absolutely wrong. It takes a life of dedication to master any discipline, and that’s not fighting specific. Think about professional athletes, or even masters of a craft. From the brewer to the painter, hours of training, practice, and repetition fall into the real world that they live in. If you’re lucky, you can expedite the learning process, but even then, your world is not going to be like that of the entertainment leg of martial arts.
Standing United We Pack a Punch
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