What’s Your Objective?
So rather than adding to these profuse and varied advisories by writing another lengthy article of similar vein, I’ll just give you a series of brief and personal evaluations that may prove useful.
First off, there are clubs out there teaching more than one style of martial art. (We could perhaps exchange style for aspect.)
A simple logic might follow: If it takes time to get proficient in one thing, it takes more time to get proficient in two things.
My concern is where the sporting-competitive aspects of a martial art are taught alongside self-defence – where they are related, but effectually diverge so long as you aren’t shown how they mix and match up.
It’s difficult, we shouldn’t try to describe the view from the top of the mountain while we’re still making the climb. So I’m at least prepared to acknowledge the possibility of the sporting aspects of a martial art and self-defense marrying somewhere along the line.
It’s just from my expereince there wasn’t much in the way to explain where they might come together. Rather they seemed to be drawing attention and time away from each other – my time and attention!
In due course I saw clear where my preference lay.
It may be you like variety and have a more all-embracing attitude than me. But seeing as there are only so many hours in a day, consider what follows:
If you’re into fitness and interested in winning trophies and accolades then fair dues, why dilute your efforts by learning skills outside of “the rules”? What use a fight ending strike to the throat if you’re banned for life from the sport that you love?
Likewise what use evasion tactics used in the ring if there’s no room to move and two tanked up assailants who won’t play by the rules?
Let us at least acknowledge that while there are many great martial artists or boxers or fighters of whatever form in the ring/octagon you wouldn’t want to mess with, who would more than likely destroy your common aggressor, there are many more who, through garnering a false sense of security in their dojo or club, are then dismantled because of their inability to discern the difference between the World of Rules and the Great Untamed.
My recommendation: Be safe. Decide what your ultimate objective is and stick to it. Avoid a convoluted mish-mash of ideas and styles where possible, and if it isn’t your sport, avoid competition, and train for No Game.
Don’t be fooled into thinking you are learning how to defend yourself solely by entering tournements of whatever sort.
To illustrate, MMA is still a sport. There are no knives in the cage. No two-or-more against one. What works there may or may not work on the street.
We can all get “owned”.