Stealing the Technique

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nafod
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Stealing the Technique

Post by nafod » Tue Jun 19, 2018 3:24 pm

During my 4 years of Aikido, one thing that I learned to like about how it was taught was the idea of 'stealing the technique'. The instructor was just going to show it to you in a whole bunch of different ways (and demonstrate it on you), and your job was to figure out how to do it. No close coaching and subtleties passed. Non-verbal. Kind of left you out hanging until you accepted it as the way it was going to be. Counter to the rest of coaching you normally receive.

What I learned was that learning how to steal the technique was itself a skill that ended up transferring over to other activities. Made me far more watchful of whoever I was stealing the technique from. Following a guy while mountain biking or skiing. Watching someone do kayak rolls. Sparring.

As an instructor in other things, it also made me aware that I needed to make it steal-able as I demonstrated stuff. Flying, as an example.

Just passed through my head...
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by Bram » Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:23 pm

I've read recently that it's best to let a student struggle a bit for the answer instead of providing it for them each time. Seems to develop greater resilience.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by JimZipCode » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:54 pm

I tend to talk too much as an instructor. That "active watching" mode of learning, and productive struggling for an answer, has benefits for the student.

My Judo instructor strikes a good balance. He tells you while he's showing you, then he lets you rep it. Occasionally will step in if you're actively going down the wrong path; but if you're close and just need practice to iron it out, he stays quiet and lets you do that. I mean, makes you do that.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by Shapecharge » Wed Jun 20, 2018 1:31 pm

So like when you guys are applying your makeup you really learned the proper way to add mascara and foundation etc. by watching others do it instead of being "taught." Very interesting.

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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by nafod » Wed Jun 20, 2018 9:45 pm

Dad to son as he tosses mom onto the bed, "I'm gonna give you a play-by-play so pay attention boy"
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by Sangoma » Thu Jun 21, 2018 1:56 am

I think the idea is good, but after some foundation has been laid. I am at the very early stage of BJJ learning and now begin to appreciate the subtleties of the technique. Few inches make a difference between a tight choke and s loose one. Sure, I could figure it out on my own, but that would take s long time. After a while - I am guessing - you develop some intuition about the technique, and then figuring things out makes sense.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by terra » Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:58 am

Yeah. This works, IF you understand enough of the principles underlying what you are observing.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by nafod » Sun Jun 24, 2018 12:25 pm

terra wrote:
Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:58 am
Yeah. This works, IF you understand enough of the principles underlying what you are observing.
Here’s a thought, kids steal all of their initial life skills, including speaking a language.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by Sangoma » Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:09 am

Much used example of kids learning a language is not completely correct. An adult, learning a language systematically can in three years speak at a very decent level. In any case, it will be better than that of a three year old child.

According to the US Foreign Service Institute it takes 480 - 720 hours to achieve basic fluency in languages, depending on the complexity (Arabic and Chinese is more complex than French or German). Studying two hours a day five days a week gets you 520 hours after a year. A child takes at least three times longer, even though he is completely immersed. According to the same source, if you put 10 hours a day you should achieve basic fluency in 48 to 72 days. I would like to see a child who could do that.

As I said I agree that this has a place in learning, but only after a solid foundation has been laid.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by terra » Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:21 am

nafod wrote:
Sun Jun 24, 2018 12:25 pm
terra wrote:
Sun Jun 24, 2018 1:58 am
Yeah. This works, IF you understand enough of the principles underlying what you are observing.
Here’s a thought, kids steal all of their initial life skills, including speaking a language.
...and they are actually already wired* with the underlying principles for a lot of those. Including language, feeding, drinking, knowing that a snake is dangerous, how to play, even how to have sex, and a few other things required to survive and build on the interactions through which we've been able to evolve. Play is a big one and this and this is probably how the 'technique stealing' process works. Some of the simple skills are learned fast, there are even parts of that pre-wiring (primitive reflexes) that actually drop away at certain early stages of life, and if they don't the kid can have developmental problems later on. Some life skills take about 16 years to get, whilst some they never do**.

For instance the example you gave of language... There are two separate areas in the brain pre-wired* for language (Wernicke and Broca areas). One is for the primary language we learn and the other is for any secondary languages we might pick up in our nomadic travels... So our brain is specialised for certain skills pertaining to our evolution and development as a species. Being able to serve a tennis ball or mimic Steven Seagal doesn't have a dedicated area...

So yeah, i'm not shitting on the idea Nafod, Stealing the technique works really well IF you have some underlying principles.

For those of you that have a baby around you, start waving to it. Do a 'baby wave' by opening and closing your fingers. Use the same hand every time and watch their mirrored hand. After a while you will ('might'... cos it depends on age and doesn't always happen like this), see their fingers begin to flex a little bit when you wave at them, this is their social engagement system mirroring you. A little later they will start to bring the hand up, like you are doing, etc etc. Then they get the social context that you wave when leaving or arriving etc... This whole interaction begs the question, where do we end and where does the other begin... Who we are changes the world.


*'wired' = shorthand term, and not the most correct.
** Note, an increasing level of unnatural stressors in the environment are interfering with this social engagement process in children.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by Fat Cat » Wed Jun 27, 2018 9:47 pm

Bram wrote:
Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:23 pm
I've read recently that it's best to let a student struggle a bit for the answer instead of providing it for them each time. Seems to develop greater resilience.
This was Carlson Gracie's approach. He felt that too many instructors tried to burden the student with excruciating detail that they weren't prepared to absorb.

He thought that you should teach a technique in as few steps as possible and then have them drill it repeatedly. The more they worked the technique, two things would happen: first, many questions would disappear on their own as their experience with the technique increased, and second, the remaining questions would be better focused, relating to specific details of execution.
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Re: Stealing the Technique

Post by Wild Bill » Sat Jun 30, 2018 12:48 pm

Usual method for me, really.
I did such with kettlebell sport, then with yoga, now with capoeira.
And i understand that i was bad in GS, was bad in yoga and will be bad in capoeira, but still i like such method ))

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