Self Defense Concepts #78 – Read Your Opponent

Have you ever wondered how warriors and Martial Artists develop that “sixth sense” that allows them to anticipate movements of their attackers, and choreograph strikes and techniques with 4 or 5  attackers?  I’ll let you in on a little secret.

It’s not magic.

They just pay attention more than you do.

“Reading” people is a time-honored skill, and is useful in all types of endeavors, from poker, to business, to martial arts.  What does “reading” someone mean?  It means that you pay attention to all the information coming to you from that person; how they hold their posture, their facial expression, how their weight is placed, where they focus their eyes, how they are reacting to you and the people around them, etc.

Seriously,  when was the last time you noticed which way someone’s toes were pointed?  Good Martial Artists notice those things.  It tells them which way your adversary might move or strike, whether the will use their feet, hands or with a weapon.

Like anything else, learning to read people is not a skill most of us were blessed with;  it requires patience and practice to master.  As you become more attuned to reading opponents, you will find yourself evaluating people as they walk down the street toward you.  Hone that skill.  It will serve you well in all aspects of life, from music concerts to business meetings.  The more you can learn to read people, the more successful you can become in your own endeavors.

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