Art and martial art - start with a sketch

Art and martial art

When teaching I always keep in mind the analogy of the artistic painter. The painter BEGINS WITH A SKETCH and then fills in all the details over time to arrive finally at a beautiful painting. So too, The martial artist must approach every skill that he or she learns in a similar fashion. It’s tempting to jump straight into details, afterall, we are told so often it’s the details that make the difference. I believe it’s essential however, to begin with a general idea of the underlying PURPOSE and CONTEXT of the move first, and once this is clearly established, THEN move into details. Details without direction is just so much noise that won’t improve performance. Start with WHAT are you trying to accomplish and WHY this is a good thing and WHEN you employ it. Then start with an overview of the move and finish with details. So like the painter - BEGIN WITH A SKETCH and in time let the painting fill out the picture into a work of art that all who see it will admire. Here I chat with outstanding youth athletes Mikey Wilson and Liam Zeh before drilling begins - creating an outline that will give the practice session a sense of direction and purpose that they can build towards over the training time.