At the moment we begin thinking we stop paying attention.


What is Solo Training?

At its most obvious it is training on our own, our own space, our own time, agenda and intentions.

In the Martial Arts solo participation in a Form provides us with the tools to approach our training on an even footing, to see it as it is and not as how we think it is or might be told it is.

This is the main purpose of all Forms, they achieve different reasons later but initially, it is this.     Objectivity.

The ultimate expression of any Art, Martial or otherwise, is to become one with it, lose one’s identity and become the thing we do.

But there is a paradox afoot here, doing is not being, in fact doing prevents being.

‘Doing’ requires thinking, ‘Being’ requires attention.

At the moment we begin thinking we stop paying attention.

We arrive at an awkward situation, once we start to actively do the Form, in a certain manner, to a certain pattern, once we begin to follow the instruction we enter the world of the subjective, and just like that {imaginary snap of the fingers}, doing the Form becomes a contradiction of the reason we are doing the Form in the first place.     Objectivity.

However, if we can explore the space between the contradictions of being and doing we can learn, or perhaps it would be more accurate to say discover, how to become creative ‘in the moment’, how to turn something that is on the surface quite useless, such as a Form, into a useable and powerful action.

The key is ‘Intention’.

But in this context what is ‘Intention’?

If we think of causality then Intention is the effect.

This is a mental game, not a physical game, and it can be a real head spin, the effect is the thing we achieve with the being state, not the doing state.

How do we transition from doing to being to effect?

Once we are working in the realm of different mental states it does not need to be bounded by any limitations that our Martial Art may require stylistically.

This means we do not need the Form to understand the Form, and by extension, once we reach this understanding we no longer have any reason to physically do the Form.

Go ask Alice, I think she’ll know.

In the last 50 years, there has been remarkable progress in the fields such as neurobiology, psychology, psychoneuromuscular theory and even technology through A.I. and machine learning that gives us a very different explanation of how we do stuff.

My own experience with this began in the late 1970s with Timothy Gallwey’s ‘The Inner Game of Tennis’ and in the early 1980’s Sybervisions Tennis and Golf psychoneuromuscular training systems and it is why to this day I approach things via sports.

In particular, Gallwey’s book could very well be ‘The Inner Game of S.L.T.’

If you are one of the many people that spend a large amount of time doing the Form there is a very real chance that you are working against yourself.

You may not be, but the recent findings in the applied fields of human behavior would suggest that more than likely you are.

Don’t panic, this is not a dead-end, but it will require a change in direction, or at least a major change in thinking because it does not matter what we are doing physically, what style or shape, fast or slow, you can safely keep the old body patterns.

This post is about Solo Training, and about changing our thinking, a good place to start is to ask ourselves a few questions, there is no right or wrong answer the purpose is simply to put a pin in the map and see where we are.

Q. What is the Goal of Solo Training?

Q. Do we know why we are doing this?

Q. Can Solo Training exist in a group situation?

Q. Can it be realistically thought of as Solo Training if we are in a room full of people doing the same thing?

Q. Why train on our own if we can have a partner help us?

Q. If we are in a group situation why not use the group?

Q. Can Solo Training teach applied techniques or practical applications?

Q. If not what do we expect to learn?


Sometimes we see more clearly when we look at things from an alien perspective, such as looking at out training through the lens of economics.


The economics of Solo Training.

Q. What is the cost against the returns?

Q. Do I take out more than I put in?

Q. What’s in it for me?

Q. When do I expect a return on my investment?


This is a big area to explore, I will come back to it later on.





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