Kyusho Fight-Flight Reflex
Understanding the Kyusho Fight-Flight Reflex is a "master key" to teaching and accomplishing successful self defense. But from what I have seen in the industry only a hand full of teachers actually understand it. Below is a definition.
Fight or Flight Reflex: "The fight-or-flight response is a physiological reaction that occurs in response to a perceived harmful event, attack, or threat to survival."
Now pretty much everyone understands this on an intellectual level. The issue is people do NOT understand it on an application level.
Application of Kyusho Fight-Flight Reflex requires some specific training. Some people have "natural" control when it comes to this, I was lucky to have been one of these people. But this is a psychological occurrence and not related to normal martial arts training like some think. I will also say this categorically, this response has nothing to do with ring fighting, or sport. You DO NOT experience the Fight or Flight Reflect in a ring. Your life is not in danger!
Kyusho Fight-Flight Reflect - Training it
When this reflex kicks in one of two things are going to happen. You will freeze like a deer in the headlights, or your will fight back (or run).
This is a massive dump of adrenaline to the systems, chancing blood flow, heart rate, breathing rate and many other physiological occurrences.
You can train this in a martial arts setting by slowing ramping up "stress training." My favorite methods were to simulate an attack in the dark. This was also a student favorite. And doing multiple attacks. There is a right and wrong way to do it too. Most do it wrong.
What martial arts teacher often don't get is that the students response is looked at first. And also what is their reaction like? What steps need to be taken to help them with fear?
This is a step by step process!
Next we need to look at the tools required, once the student can deal with the response of the nervous system, required to end the conflict FAST! The very best scenario is to be able to end the attack in no more than 3 strikes, preferably one!
Before i go on I will point out that everything happening here is due to a neurological response. So why would you not learn to take advantage of that? [Nerve Strikes]
Kyusho Fight-Flight Reflex
Recently I was at a seminar with a Hapkido presenter, a very well respected man and rightfully so. What he was teaching as street caused me concern because it seemed to be the wrong level of escalation.
If you put someone in an arm bar who is trying to kill you what will you do next? What will you do if his buddy is near by and is going to cut your throat? Self Defense is not 1 dimensional. You are also not going to press a point and finish the fight. The misconceptions about Kyusho Jitsu - Pressure Point training and usage are vast!
You need to strike the correct place, the correct way and fortunately there are MANY such places on the body. Your root art training should be able to get you there! If not you need a new system.
And since there are pressure points on the body that will yield an excellent result with a single strike then why would you not train for these? Here is a short list of one hit pressure points to train with.
One Hit Knockout Pressure Points
When it comes to conquering the Kyusho Fight-Flight Reflex it is a complex subject.
Some people like myself need to do no work. Since I was a child my response to crisis as always been with calm.
For others it requires learning to be braver in bad situations. And this becomes the job of the teacher. Martial Arts - self Defense training is highly psychological. Where do you fall into the spectrum of control of the Fight or Flight reflex? Please comment here.
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Yours in the arts,
Grand Master Art Mason