A critical factor in competition success that gets surprisingly little attention is PACE. There are two main types of pace that are of importance. The first is the pace that i impose upon MYSELF. This concerns my efficiency with regards my energy expenditure. Often i see athletes working themselves very hard when there is no need. Consequently they fatigue rapidly and after a strong start, fade in effectiveness. The second concerns the pace i impose upon my OPPONENT. For any given match there will be a pace set by the two athletes that is usually a compromise between the desired pace of each of them. Every athlete has a pace they feel comfortable with as they perform their techniques. If I can force them to work at a slower or higher pace than their comfort zone, this will often lower their performance and fatigue them. Learning to use pace as a weapon is often neglected in the gym where the sparring is usually (and understandably) a level below competition. Thus the great value of competition experience as the primary means of learning this skill (though it certainly can be learned in the gym also). Here, Nicky Ryan works to impose his desired pace in a tough match against the talented Geo Martinez. His victory was largely a result of an advanced use of pace control - VARIATIONS IN PACE THAT CONFUSE AN OPPONENT AND ALLOW A SUDDEN INCREASE IN PACE AFTER A LULL TO HELP GET A BREAKTHROUGH. Learning to set your techniques in the context of pace signifies a well developed game - work on it like all your other skills - it will soon reward you.