Home of America's first Mixed Martial Art Training Method for the Entire Family
Appendix II: ASP
APPENDIX II: Kickboxing As Part of A.S.P.
Excerpts from Interviews of the Author on Various TV Shows
"WHAT IS A.S.P.?"
"A.S.P., or American Self-Protection*, is a novel unified approach to all close combat and related arts, including kickboxing. "Essentially, A.S.P. approaches close combative knowledge from the standpoint of principles rather than individual techniques. Techniques are used as a means to train the student to react according to principles. Once he learns this, he can even devise his own techniques. A.S.P. is a common sense approach to useful training in terms of technical knowledge and mental conditioning which, while very necessary, is quite often forgotten. "I must also point out that A.S.P. is not a hodgepodge of `borrowed' techniques from other fighting arts. Anyone who can read and exercise some judgment may pick up techniques from various books, put them together and claim a new `system'. A.S.P. is not such a conglomerate."
"WHY DID YOU DEVELOP A.S.P.?"
"I have been in the fighting arts since I was 13, and slowly it dawned on me that there must be a way to this kind of knowledge more accessible to the average person, a way which will make it easier for him not only to learn, but also to retain longer what he has learned. "When I was captain of the Oxford U. Judo team in England, we beat Cambridge in 1954 at Oxford in the Albert Stadium. After the matches were over, I demonstrated some jujitsu techniques, which were quite well received. Since we were the local boys, we were surrounded, congratulated and asked a barrage of questions. It was then that it struck me, seeing how little the public had understood, how much we had trained and how fugitive the results of our training were, that there must be a better way. "Since I am a research man by profession, I went to work and, using the techniques I am familiar with, I developed the A.S.P. basis over a period of eleven and a half years. Then I made it public. Incidentally, it would have taken only a couple of weeks, if A.S.P. were a hodgepodge of techniques picked here and there."
"WHAT PEOPLE WILL GET OUT OF IT?"
"Even at the basic level, people training in A.S.P. will get a well-rounded body of self-defensive and body-mind coordination knowledge, with a far superior yield for their investment in time and effort as compared to any other form of self-defensive art, or sport. They will also retain the acquired knowledge much longer. "One should not, however, expect miracles without training, no matter how effective the teaching system might be. One should also understand that meaningful training involves also mental conditioning and constant awareness. This is why understanding the philosophy and strategy behind A.S.P. is so important. "The best system in the world can give a person only but a fighting chance in case of physical attack. This chance is directly proportional to his age, physical condition and degree of training. There are simply no panaceas and no miracles. Any promises of quick and miraculous results are simply misleading. One must be prepared to expend a minimal effort, at least to the point of developing some vital conditioned responses to common attacks. "American Self-Protection, or A.S.P., helps one to achieve meaningful results with must less effort and with much better yield than any other presently known system."
* Name and insignia filed with the U.S. Patent Office #865,959, March 4, 1969 and #926,281, January 4, 1972.
"ARE THERE RANKINGS IN A.S.P. KICKBOXING?"
"Indeed. While we have basic differences with the so-called `martial arts', we believe that ranking is a good teaching tool, because it sets goals for people to reach and affords the satisfaction of reaching them. Thus, it helps to maintain the interest and involvement of the student. Yes, we do have black belt rankings in A.S.P. Kickboxing."
"WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A.S.P. AND THE SO-CALLED 'MARTIAL ARTS'?'
"While the martial arts are good and valid in themselves, their approach is disorganized and requires too much effort to be useful to the average person. "It is pretty much like when you go to the circus and you see all those aerialists perform. Most people will say: `Boy, that's great, but it is not for me.' Besides, one can keep in good physical condition without doing what they do. "Also, breaking bricks and assorted low grade building materials, for instance, is quite spectacular, but, besides the fact that awfully few bricks attack people, most of us would not feel the urge to break any. Of course, this should not prevent us from admiring those who do. "It is true that the essential elements of the various fighting forms in existence today have been known since time immemorial. No single person or nation can claim that they invented them. This is why many combative forms remind one another. It is how these elements are put together which makes for a new or better system.
"There is no question that A.S.P. includes techniques common to other fighting arts, and no attempt is made to conceal this fact. This is perfectly normal and is to be expected. When the founder of judo, Jigoro Kano, put his system together, he borrowed freely from existing arts; even the name "judo" was not new. The same is true for other `arts' or sports, for example, aikido, karate and savate. The progression of human knowledge is based on previous human knowledge in a continuous sequence. In the field of the fighting arts, one can always say by watching a technique supposedly `belonging' to one art, that it really belongs to another. Examples: judo and free style wrestling; karate and french boxing; aikido and jujitsu; sabre fencing and kendo. The truth is that a so-called new art is really a new systematic approach to a given type knowledge, nothing more.
"In the fighting arts, like in warfare, one has to adopt a strategy. This is where A.S.P. is truly novel, because it has adopted the strategy of working with principles rather than with individual techniques. A.S.P. is a unified approach to all fighting arts based on the common underlying principles of distance, direction, timing, leverage and momentum. Some necessary attributes such as balance and coordination, which are in turn influenced by breathing and relaxation, enable one to react according to said principles, but should not be confused with them. "A.S.P. aims at developing specific, yet simple and versatile techniques stemming from these five principles. Thus, if the fundamental techniques of our system are viewed individually and out of the context of our master plan, the whole point of A.S.P. will be missed. "A practical and meaningful attempt to ,normalize' the approach to the fighting arts must be based on the common underlying principles mentioned earlier and on judiciously selected training methods aiming at developing the necessary understanding and attributes. This is what A.S.P. is about."
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