Bullying and the martial arts


Image

My friend over at momentmatters posted the below entry on April 28. I found it quite intriguing for different reasons.

I was bullied as a kid, specifically when I was in elementary school. I was taunted mainly because I had an interest in dinosaurs and for whatever reason, that was seen by my classmates as revolting. The only thing that got me through it was having only one friend in my entire world at the time. His name is Ian, he was my neighbour at the time, we’ve known each other since we were toddlers, and we’re still friends to this day. I left this school after Grade 4, and slowly but surely, my social circle started to form as I made new friends at a new school and started to meet people that I could get along with. Did the bullying stop? Well, yes and no. See, I made friends with people but of course, those same people I was friends with still acted like idiots every now and then but whenever I had a problem, I reported it to the appropriate authority figures and it was dealt with.

In the entry linked, the author makes the claim that bullying is a necessary evil because it toughens children and helps prepare them for the real world. As much as I hate to say it, there’s truth to that in principle. Yes, the real world can be harsh and cruel.

BUT.

Only at times, is it like that. Everyday is not a bad one, filled with insurmountable odds which involve dealing with scumbags that tear you down. There are good people in this world, who can help build you up and make you feel like a better person and make you feel like life is worth living for. When I got to high school, I grew pretty tall. By the time I was 14, I think I reached roughly 5’11”. Today I’m 6’2″ but I didn’t get to that height until I was 18, I think. Being so tall meant bullies more or less left me alone. When you’re in a private school too like I was, most of the “bullies” are just a bunch of idiots who hurl insults but do no physical harm because they’re all talk. I learned to ignore them, save for one baboon who was dealt with by the school.

The author again, feels that bullying is necessary because children learn to overcome adversity and it toughens them up. Maybe that’s true for a few specific individuals, like myself to an extent. I learned to recognize who is a fool and put them out of my life. But the fact of the matter is that very few children are able to do that. That’s why we hear stories of kids in the States committing suicide because they can’t take it anymore. They reach a point where they feel life isn’t worth living because everyone picks on them and very few people seem to care about it.

What does this have to do with my blog, you ask? Well, that’s where the martial arts come in. The martial arts, along with discipline and respect, teach us to defend ourselves from attacks of all kinds. More important than physically defending oneself though, is building the mental toughness required to control emotions and not lash out violently against a bully, whether it is in the school yard, workplace, or what have you. I’ve been in a position where I was dealing with a co-worker and we got into an argument over something that was so utterly pointless and stupid, yet he insisted on making an issue of it because he had nothing better to do (that’s my guess anyway).

It grew to the point where I was literally raging internally and could really feel my heart pound against my chest. I wouldn’t have had a second guess about clocking the guy across the jaw and smashing his face, but then I remembered my training and what I’ve been taught: restraint and control. What would attacking him accomplished? Nothing, except being arrested and spending the night in a holding cell, along with termination from my job and a potential civil suit. But having that mental restraint was extremely handy. I would encourage anyone who is bullied at any age, to seek out the martial arts and start to build up that mental toughness so that you may learn to dismiss the idiots in your life and, should you find yourself in a position where you need to fight, as unfortunate as it may be, you can successfully defend yourself and (ideally) teach the bully a lesson he/she won’t soon forget.

What do you all think? What advice do you have for dealing with bullies?

Advertisements

Moment Matters

It’s all about preparations for advancing life.

It is not preferred for any child to be bullied at all. Yes, in a perfect world; but ours was imperfect. Regardless of one’s developmental stage, class or any demographics you can think of, bullies are sure visitors.

It’s true, a fact of unfair life. I’ve seen (and known) many adults who would break into a fistfight just because someone accidentally stepped on him, or would rant publicly in a waiter’s degraded face because of a trivial mistake of dropping an onion on her lap. These people don’t know how to handle unexpected and disadvantaged events, and it may perhaps because the likes of similar events are never experienced before.

A bullied child will learn how to fight later on. I’m promoting fighting; not to harass but to defend, not to be violent but to be vigilant, and not to be purely…

View original post 124 more words

Jones’ Next Fight Confirmed

Hey guys, how’s it going? I know, I know. I’m late to the party since it’s been almost a week since UFC 145 and Jon Jones (16-1 MMA, 10-1 UFC) successfully defended his light-heavyweight title against his former training partner and friend, Rashad Evans (17-2-1 MMA, 12-2-1 UFC). The fight itself wasn’t quite the barn burner people expected, but I enjoyed it as a technical display of skill and watching Evans be bloodied up for his troubles was fun too.

Image

So with that fight now behind us, we move on to the next man who will challenge Jones for the title: former PRIDE middleweight and welterweight champion, as well as former Strikeforce light-heavyweight chamption, Dan “Hendo” Henderson (29-8 MMA, 6-2 UFC). I believe this will be Jones’ toughest fight to date because Henderson has by far the most experience out of anyone Jones has fought up to now and Hendo is as tough as they come; just ask Mauricio Rua. I still think Jones will win the eventual showdown because he’s just that good, but this is MMA after all, and anything can happen.

Image

As always, your thoughts are welcomed and appreciated.

UFC 145’s Main Event Keys to Victory

I think if you ask most MMA fans how badly they want to see Jones vs. Evans this weekend, the answer would be a unanimous one: very, very much so. This fight has been postponed at least twice now and it’s finally going to happen Saturday night. With that said, here is my breakdown of how I believe the fight will pan out.

Striking

I give a slight edge to Rashad because he has knocked people out before. Just ask Chuck Liddell or Shawn Salmon (poor guy). His KO power is there; he just hasn’t used it lately. Jones definitely has the advatange though when it comes to overall striking game because his style is very unorthodox (as we’ve all seen with those spinning back elbows of his) and his range is the longest in the entire UFC roster at 84″. However, Jones has not demonstrated one-punch KO power as of yet as his finishes have come via submission or TKO. I also believe that Rashad will know how to work around Jones’ long reach because they used to train together. Rashad does have a suspect chin though, as we saw in his fights against Thiago Silva and Rampage Jackson so if Jones starts landing bombs, it could be a short night for ‘Suga’.

Advantage: Evans

Cardio

Both men are well-conditioned athletes. They have no problem going a solid three rounds at least and I haven’t seen either of them gas in a fight so I think they could last five rounds if it goes that far.

Advantage: Tie

Wrestling

Rashad is an NCAA Division 1 wrestling champion and Jon Jones is both an NJCAA Junior Collegiate Champion and NJCAA All-American from Iowa Central Community College. Rashad has the advantage on paper but I give this to Jones because he has had great success in mixing up his wrestling with his clinch work and used to great effect when beating down his opponents. Look at what he did to Shogun and Rampage. Rashad’s wrestling is good but when I think about it, I think of the Rampage fight when he telegraphed just about every single takedown he went for and they looked pretty standard to me. With Jones’ long reach and considerably better conditioning than an overweight Rampage, I don’t see Rashad shooting in at will, lest he be clocked with one of Jones’ knees.

Advantage: Jones

Grappling

Rashad is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt but hasn’t submitted anyone since 2004 so it’s a mystery as to how good he is off of his back. Jones on the other hand uses submissions to great effect. He choked out Rampage Jackson, Lyoto Machida, and Ryan Bader and looked amazing doing it. Based on that, I would give the advantage to Jones because he is submitting fighters on an almost regular basis and Rashad is too busy either with finishing fights with strikes or going to a decision.

Advantage: Jones

Final Prediction

Based on the information presented above, it’s 2-1 in Jonny ‘Bones’ Jones’ favour, so I say he will win this fight by either submission in the third round or unanimous decision. He could very well win by TKO as well but I think Rashad will be too busy looking to get inside of Jones’ reach and take the fight to the mat as opposed to striking with a spider (with apologies to Anderson Silva). For that reason Jones will look use to his submission skills and prove that he is the best LHW fighter in the world today.

I welcome your thoughts.

Jon Jones and Rashad Evans pre-fight staredown

There you have it folks. The two former training partners have made their feelings for each other quite well-known to the rest of us and on April 21, it all comes to a head. They will put their money where there mouth is and only one will emerge as champ. I’ve gotta hand it to Rashad. I think he’s the first person to actually get Jones to look directly at him in a staredown. Considering Jones typically looks away in such a case, I’d say the hatred is pretty intense.

Who takes this one?

Alistair Overeem fails pre-fight drug test for UFC 146

It had to happen. We had the perfect card here; all heavyweights. UFC 146 was going to be a night of all-out heavyweight action with a main event that striker fans were all looking forward to. Current champion Junior dos Santos (14-1 MMA, 8-0 UFC) was going to defend his title against K-1 Grand Prix champion, DREAM! heavyweight champion, and Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem (48-11-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC). It couldn’t have been more perfect. The two very best strikers in MMA heavyweight competition were going to go balls-out for MMA’s most jeweled crown and likely give us one of the best title fights ever.

But on April 4, 2012, news reports confirmed our worst (and for some, predicted) fear: Alistair Overeem tested positive for elevated testosterone levels, at a ratio of 14:1 which is over double the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s prescribed 6:1 max ratio.

And just like that, *poof*. The dream match died.

I just don’t know what to say. Overeem is one of my favourite fighters and I would always defend to death the idea that he naturally grew large because he put the work in the gym and make the right choices with his lifestyle. Well, so much for that I guess.

There’s no real point in mentioning UFC President Dana White’s reaction as I’m sure most of us know how he feels about all this. For the rest of us, we’ll just have to wait and see what Overeem’s camp has to say about this and what this means for not only the main event at UFC 146 but also Overeem’s future within the UFC, if any.

If I created a pro fighter…

I was thinking about this just now and I want to take a moment and have some fun with this. Nowadays, a fighter has to be well-rounded if he wants to succeed in the cage and one day, fight for (and win) a world title. MMA has come a long way since 1993 where it was all about being good at one thing, to the days of Pride FC where the best fighters were excellent at one particular discipline but had some functional knowledge of one or two other arts. Now, a fighter has to know a little bit of everything and be really good at it if he wants to get anywhere. So without further ado, here are the characteristics that would comprise my ideal fighter. They are in no particular order.

1. The accuracy of Anderson Silva

2. The boxing of Junior dos Santos

3. The wrestling of GSP

4. The strength, power, and explosiveness of Brock Lesnar

5. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu of Damian Maia

6. The conditioning of Cain Velasquez

7. The reach of Jon Jones

8. The unorthodox strikes of Lyoto Machida

9. The tenacity of Chael Sonnen

10. The speed of Jose Aldo

11. The kickboxing of Alistair Overeem

What about you? What does your ideal fighter look like?

Image