Latosa Concepts terminology. Thoughts on mindset, moods, and espada y daga.
I thought I would write a bit about the mental state and how it influences our physical ability to perform a given action. This subject is driven by my experience in the last few weeks. I train espada y daga for the most part with MA these days. There are days when I just don’t feel it until we do some hand to hand inspired by the espada y daga. (We go through different weapons and training methods in a session.) We stay “inside”, in tight and use our arms as machetes. You might say I don’t get into my groove until I get really physical sometimes. That might be due to the warm up (shadow boxing with hand weights) that I do before strength and conditioning sessions.
The alu-trainer sets can be ordered at Norms Training Blades. I have been real happy with the ones I have ordered for my self as well as for other people. Next time I need some more variations of trainers I’ll be ordering them from the same place. Chris also makes special orders. He trains and teaches which makes the products better in my view.
I should mention that I like to start with point foot work and circular movements (at the short sword range) when building up a person’s espada y daga game. Working at a long distance and moving in to the stabbing range when a feeling of control is established usually works well. This would be working in the squaring off zones as well as diagonally backwards. Btw, hockey gloves, arm protection and smackstiks are a great way to practice the flow and not have to hold back as much as we have to do with alu-trainers. I can recommend it for espada y daga training.
All this gets to the subject at hand. I am driven by mood and my fighting changes according to my mood. There are days when a more serrada based movement pattern feels right and there are days when a more traditional espada y daga feels right. Trying to do espada y daga when every gene in your body is screaming Mike Tyson is a waste of time. The opposite is true as well.
The basic pattern (a basic starters pattern) for espada y daga is cut-maim-kill for beginners. In other wards there is a set routine … sword-knife-sword. You can see how that can get to be slow when you are in a Mike Tyson kind of mood (online, online, and online again). If you are a student, you have to do what your instructor has planned for the day. If you train with a partner then you can possibly talk with your partner about training what best fits your mood.
The reason for this is simple. If you teach yourself to fight against your instincts you are “un-training” yourself. When we teach ourselves to die … we learn to die. When we teach ourselves to win … we win. When we learn to trust the instincts we have worked hard at developing we are winners. This gets back to one of my basic philosophies … don’t get used to starting in a bad position. We should be busting our butts not to get in a bad position. Catastrophe training from a poor position should not be the largest part of your training! I repeat starting from a bad position and accepting it is not a good habit!
If your mood lets you go either way, great for you. If your instructor has some tips for changing your mood / mental state, learn them and practice them. He/she can’t change the plan for a class just for you.
If you are a professional and you have to be more tactical in your response/actions, that’s another “tough … learn to live with it” response. Tactical responders don’t have too many choices, especially when they are working with teams as they do for the most part. Each person has a job.
All this brings me to another basic mantra for me. Don’t defend yourself in a given way if you don’t feel it 100%. That will get you in trouble. Second guessing takes time and energy, which is often needed to perform the action correctly and safely. That’s why the bruiser beats the martial artist every time. You have to feel it, know it and live it. Add to that have experience with it when under real and painful pressure. If you can’t get your Mike Tyson on because you are in a “control-gunt-strike mood” … then go that way. If you feel some Carl Lewis in your legs, then run if you can. There is no reason to stick around and get your butt kicked when your head is not in the fight.
I’ll stop here. Ya’ll have a great day.
Be Proactive in Life and Training