On Your Own - Part 6

By Mark Brosten
Published on Jun 30th, 2012

While training in Martial Arts setting you may find that you use principles of motion
(posture, balance, timing, etc.) and principles of self defense (margin for error, angle of deviation, etc.) fairly effectively. Often, when you are outside your normal training environment, you may fail to apply these ideas at all. An experience, like tripping or falling in public and not tucking your “hard corners” or walking into a door even though you’ve trained parries and foot maneuvers all week, triggers this revelation. This can also lead to some heavy self-criticism. While identifying your failings can be beneficial, a more valuable outcome of this eye-opener is to use the experience to revise your training.

You may consider moving your training at times from the sterile studio setting to an environment that has everyday variables such as outdoor areas with furniture or uneven surfaces, your living space, or while shopping. Keeping a martial arts consciousness can make shopping faster and more efficient if one uses the economy of motion principle.

Another example may be using timing while driving so that you ease off the gas pedal when you see that a stoplight is red, arrive when it turns green, and only need to slow down instead of stopping completely. This can be a great skill if you operate a large vehicle, or need to save on gas, brake shoes, and transmission gears. It also helps you be more aware during the general aggravation of being in traffic.

If you train outside of your comfort zone and apply the teachings of your art in other environments I am sure that you will be very surprised at the resulting benefits. Everywhere you go there is the opportunity to apply what you have learned, limited only by the imagination.

Filed under Instructors and Teaching

Author Bio :: Mark Brosten

Mark Brosten began his Martial Arts teaching career as an associate instructor in Missoula, Montana. After Serving with the Military Police in Kuwait and Iraq during the first Gulf War, he moved to New Orleans, Louisiana, to continue his training. Mark was promoted to 1st Degree Black Belt by a Board of Examiners for the International Kenpo Karate Association. While in New Orleans, Mr. Brosten continued teaching, working with a diverse group of students from artists and architects to law enforcement and military personnel. Mark also developed a summer program for children, ages 4 to 5, for the Isadore Newman School in New Orleans.

An exceptional athlete, Mark is committed to training and competition. He competes in Martial Arts events throughout the United States and has placed within the top three, each time he's competed internationally. Since his return to Montana, Mark regularly teaches seminars at various martial art studios. Mr. Brosten successfully tested for advanced Black Belt rank in October of 2007. In 2008, Mark taught his first international seminar at The World Kenpo Karate Championships in Jersey, Channel Islands U.K. His practical experience and no nonsense approach to Kenpo have served him as a student, competitor, and teacher for nearly 25 years.

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