On today’s episode, Jeremy tells us his reflections on street fights which is also a commentary on Louis Martin‘s piece at Martial Journal.
Reflections on Street Fights – Episode 315
Martial artists are often asked about violence and how do we face such challenges whether on the streets, schools, or elsewhere. On this episode, Jeremy talks about Louis Martin‘s article on Martialjournal.com that talks about street fights that involve martial artists. Listen to learn more!
You can read the transcript below or download here.
Hey everyone, thanks for tuning in whistlekickmartialartsradio episode 315 is now. Today, we’re talking about Street fights. I specifically am going to follow-up on one author’s piece at Martial Journal give some of my thoughts. My name Jeremy Lesniak why should you care about my name? Well, honestly doesn’t matter if you do but I and the host of the show, I am the founder of whistlekick and if you hanging around hopefully you are, hopefully you’re going to listen to other episodes if you haven’t before, and might care at the name of the guy was in your ears right now, of course you can check up all the stuff that we do at whistlekick.com if you want to skip to the podcast section, that’s whistlekickmartialartsradio.com. We’ve got a bunch of stuff going on, I even started a new YouTube show called 1st cup, it’s me with my 1st cup of coffee in the morning it is not nearly as polished as this show, but if you want to see behind the scenes if you want to see my face every day, yes every day as I sit on the couch and I wake up with a cup of coffee and give you something to contemplate, it’s short, less than 10 minutes and yeah it’s a little less in depth of martial arts. But the show is all about martial arts that’s why called martial arts radio. So what are we talking about today?
We are talking about a piece that happened on Martial Journal. So let me back up for those of you that don’t know. We did a piece on Martial Journal the announcement for Martial Journal, Martial Journal MartialJournal.com, is a website where bottom line I am leveraging all of the connections I’ve made with wonderful people because of this show and getting them to write stuff. I’ve reached out I’ve I’ve collected my friends and said, hey would you write something? Why are we doing troopers were doing that because one it should exist, we need a website where people can contribute their thoughts on martial arts we have standards, they’re not crazy crazy hi but they have to be original pieces were editing them, they have to be worthwhile right if we get halfway through piece and go, I don’t even wanna edit this anymore, we can get back. And because of that were developing the following people are check and stuff out there sharing it we’ve got a post most days, you know, right now we’re kind of in this 3 to 4 a week. We’ve had weeks where we’ve had more than seven, it’s been really fun. One of those pieces comes from prior guest on this show Mr. Louis Martin. He wrote the book the true believers, 285 or was it 281 see I have notes there in front of me I plan to head today. Episode 281 we heard from Mr. Martin about his time in a martial arts school that some would label a cult. Well he stuck around and he wrote this piece and it’s called I watched over 100 fights on YouTube here’s what I learned. Now, what happened is Mr. Martin spent a bunch of time, a ton of time I am blown away at the amount of research of this man did look at street fights posted on YouTube. He watched, I believe he said in the piece, he watched all of them again because he realized there was more data he had to collect. He is attempting or attempted to bring some objectivity to one of the most subjective things that people talk about, fighting. Now because of that objectivity, this piece attracted a ton of attention we even have a reaction piece up at Martial Journal and it’s been great. And I really, really want you to check this piece out because it’s going to because thank if nothing else. I’ve been thinking a lot about it over the last few weeks and that’s what today is about, is me giving you some of my reactions have also got some words for Mr. Martin that you won’t hear anywhere else so let’s talk about.
I’m not going to assume that you’ve read the piece but here’s the gist, Mr. Martin watch all these fights tracked a bunch of stuff and release some statistical data, the piece that is interesting is not so much to me what he found because what he found is pretty much in line with what I would’ve guessed I mean nothing to me is earth-shattering, but there are some things for some people our earth-shattering. Have you ever heard the quote all fights go to the ground or most fights go to the ground? That was not in his observation. I’ll let you read the piece if you haven’t because the thing that I want to talk about more is the way other people have reacted to it. The comments that came in, were amazing. Just mind blowing number of comments, we had in mind going to reviews, people were sharing this all over the place. But the thing that I found most interesting is the way people were so unwilling to consider what I’m pretty sure is the most objective report on fights that anyone’s assembled. I’ve never seen anything like this it’s great. But there are people that because they’ve been in two or three fights, they argued the findings I mean, just flat out refused to accept them. Well, I was in a fight and that’s not what happened, well, that doesn’t mean it’s not true we’re talking about statistics. We’re talking about data and this goes back to one of these concepts in martial arts that if you find that there’s a better way to do something, a lot of people will dig their heels in, they’ll refused to accept it because on some level their ego can handle it that there could be something different that is more legitimate, better, etc. That in a way invalidates the training that they’ve done. Oh you mean I could been doing it this way this whole time I feel like I wasted my time I could have been further along, I could be better and that’s not the way to look at it even though in a sense it is true. If you look at statistical data on fights, and you say well you know I’ve been in a couple fights for a fight, where I watched a guy in a fight once and that report, this data does not validate what I saw, that doesn’t mean that what you saw or what you experienced is wrong. It’s okay, but we watch people and they commit so strongly to the things that they think or see your due that they refuse to adapt, they refused to accept reality.
One of my personal principles is a notion that you can be over prepared or underprepared, you will never be perfectly prepared. And I choose always to be over prepared it’s something that people [00:07:20.26] I get teased about it. That’s okay, I don’t care, I don’t mind because I’m the guy with the lighter who doesn’t smoke or I’m the guy with you know, an extra shirt in the car you know, little things like that because I am willing to consider reality as I see it and I am constantly open to redefining what that reality looks like. There are things that I have learned from Mr. Martin‘s piece not dramatic things, but mostly what I have learned is that some of the things I believed that I did not have the opportunity to validate because I’m gonna be honest, one of the things I am most proud of in my life is that I’ve never been in a street fight. I’ve worked really really hard to avoid I’ve been successful, 100% of the time but were I to get into a fight? Some of the things that Mr. Martin‘s piece talks about line up with what I believed would happen were I to get fight. Could this be confirmation bias? Could this be why I like this piece? It could I’m human it happens but I will always take in is much information as much data is I can to build my most accurate view of reality. If we go back to college I double majored in computer science and philosophy, most of my writing my research, the things that I was passionate about in college as related philosophy, was on truth on the notion of subjective versus objective truth. The moment we filter any information through our brain, it become subjective. When we consider the world we consider in action, when we observe something there is some element of bias because of our history. Because of who we are and that’s not only okay it’s kinda necessary, we kind have to let go of that but when we look at something like fighting we look at something like trying to be prepared for self-defense we want to get his objective is possible. Objectivity that’s data that statistic that’s numbers and that’s what Mr. Martin is attempting to provide here and he gets closer than anything else I’ve ever seen. And that’s why there’s value in it for me and that’s why there should be value in it for everyone. I’ll be honest, the vast majority of content, commentary, the comments that we had coming in were amazingly supportive. People saying wow you did a ton of work, thank you. But for the people out there who looked at it and said this can’t be right because it doesn’t line up with what I know, well you’re being silly. Now I did promise you I have some words for Mr. Martin, I reached out to him and I said; hey I wanted to a reaction piece on martial arts radio to your writing do your research what do you think? And he said yeah go ahead and they said is there anything you would add or change based on the comments that have come in the feedback and he said yes. And these are all his words: “based on the feedback I’ve seen, I’d had two points: first one, people want to know how trained martial artist do versus normal people, my answer is that it’s too subjective to make a judgment on who has training and who doesn’t. With so many fights ending in mere seconds, there’s just not enough data if a guy gets knocked out and never threw, a single punch he could’ve been doing kickboxing for eight years for all we know. And his second point; commenters also wondered about quote pride fights versus legitimate assaults, I did record this but I didn’t include it in the write up because in a sizable number of the fight it wasn’t clear however, in the face where it was clear they had almost equal rates of violent outcomes. Assaults were 3% less. This is interesting because I think conventional wisdom is that pride fights are very different from assault, but it’s possible that fighting is fighting in any form and always dangerous.” that’s the end of his words. Now if you find the topic of street fights of real “real combat” to be interesting and you want more, I can think of no other place to go in our interview with Mr. Tony Blauer. Founder of the Spear system and a very well accepted lecturer, teacher, honestly, researcher consultant on real combat. He works of everyone from the military to law enforcement to individuals to martial artist. He’s great teacher and he did a two and half hour clinic. I can’t find anything other than that for his interview on the show. We broke it into two parts, I think I got to three questions it was just it was wonderful and I’ve heard Mr. Blauer speak a number of other times and I’m honored to say I’ve never heard him speak better on the subject than the way he did for us. We’re gonna link that in the show notes and that’ll give you a little bit deeper dive if you want to know about the psychology of fighting if you want to know about why, why does the fight with a martial artist look just as crummy as the fight with a non-martial artist. Why does it turn to slapping and hair pulling and just junk, why does it not look like the movies? Why do the end of most MMA fights look dramatically different from the beginning. There’s a lot of psychology and physiology going on there and Mr. Blauer talks about that. So we’re gonna link that the show notes for this episode 315, we’re also gonna link to Mr. Martin‘s piece at Martial Journal and we will link to his interview here at martial arts radio Episode 281 where we talk about his book the true believers.
I would love to know what you think, I would love to know what else can we try to bring some objectivity to in the martial arts. What other research projects might Mr. Barton or others be interested in tackling what do you want to see the data on? Go ahead and head over to whistlekickmartialartsradio.com, check out the show notes for this episode, leave a comment to let us know or find us on social media. We are @whistlekick everywhere, you can email me directly [email protected] I thank you for your time today, thank you for indulging me as I get to talk about this because I love what I do and I love that you’re part of it. Thanks for your time today until next time train hard, smile and have a great day.