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This Power Thing!

by George Mattson

Hi Art,
You mention your tournament days ,you must have had a certain explosiveness then ,was this the contributing factor in ,or towards your indepth study of explosiveness ,or was it something very different ?.


This Power Thing

Interesting question Max, I’ll try to explain the difference in tournament fighting and reality. Tournament fighting is basicly point fighting, it has to be clear and visible..My problem in POINT fighting, when I first got started, I was a one man clash. I had to learn to make my techniques "cuter" and more visual. When I exploded into my opponent, I would land many strikes but they were confusing to the referee. I had to practice very hard, to clarify my techniques. To win the match one had to score points that were very visual. All I wanted to do was explode into my opponent with whatever came out. Many times my opponent would be on the ground but I was not awarded a "point." In my first book, KUMITE, I write about all of this. When I first started tournament fighting, I was quite frustrated until I learned how to be a "tournament" type fighter. Example: This was in the quarter finals in a New England tournament. The match was all even with time running out. My opponent came at me with a front kick which I clearly read and I smashed the kick around his ankle area, following up with a hard punch which put him down. The judges all yelled "STOP", and I, took the line waiting for them to award me the point and match. The point was given to my opponent because they said his front kick was in first, thus giving him the point and the match. My point here is, he could hardly get off the floor from the punch and his foot was broken as well. I felt nothing from his kick other than the solid block I had hit him with. He was unable to continue on in the tournament. That’s the difference in point fighting and the real thing. Max, I hope that gives you somewhat of an answer to your question.


I will be taking a good amount of material from my "Exposive Karate" book. After all , its not plagiarism. My books are a training manual and not meant to be entertaining. Something to refer to if a question comes up. I will be explaining certain strikes involved in power infighting. First, we have to set the power base. Can’t shoot a strong arrow from a weak bow – right?


When the large muscles are involved in anything the body does, the result is very powerful. A coordinated muscular movement will involve all the helper muscles. These helper muscles will explode the limb toward the target in a swift strong motion. The smaller muscles of the arm need the help of the larger muscle mass in the back, trunk and legs to assist it. Upon impact, the arm is simply the arrow from the powerful bow. The fist is simply the instrument that makes contact. Behind that fist is the power of the hugh muscles of the back, trunk and legs. When the coordinated effort of all these muscle areas are brought into play the results are amazing.

If the arrow is not solid, and has any flaws in its makeup, it will splinter upon impact. The joints and bones of the body are no different.When propelling these fragile bones, attached to even more fragile joints, alignment is essential. This is why you will notice the strikes performed in an arc for added strength. The arc in the limb will bring power and stability to the blow and allow the strikes to come from different angles. Even the so called "straight punch" has a slight arc to prevent any elbow damage.

Next week lets look at the types of joints involved in the strikes. In this way it will be easier for you to understand the reasons for the positioning of the limb upon impact. I don’t want to bore you with an overload of body mechanics information, but, I feel one should have some idea of just where this power comes from. So take the time to absorb some of this, just to get a place to begin.

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