Choice Reaction, Part 8

In contrast to the example in the blog entry Choice Reactions, Part 7 the following example revolves around missing/ fast patterns and some special approaches to compensate for these circumstances. A new analysis tool is used for these observations. I will make deductions about and explain this approach in detail in later blog entries.

The example in this blog entry is an armbar. Again, this is a simplified and fabricated example. The first phase, how you manage to get into this situation, is missing. Please take a look at the sketch. You are holding the wrist of your opponent’s outstretched arm and using your other hand to push against his elbow.


Again, we start with a tree diagram. Add your intended actions and the patterns into the tree diagram. Your actions and patterns match in this special case.


If you have ever tried to execute an armbar, then you have noticed that a certain speed and force is necessary. Otherwise, your opponent slips away and the armbar fails. So, you can add another evolving alternative to the tree diagram. Even though patterns are available, they happen so fast that a reaction is too late (preset for this example). This means that your own action must either match the situation or you have to accept the outcome, whatever it might be. In this case, the opponent would either drop his shoulder or rotate the joint to release the joint lock.


The following method gives you a thinking algorithm. The foregoing tree diagram contains the evolving parallel alternatives when something goes wrong. This method further helps to organize your thinking and to define the problems in detail. The background is more complicated, but please imagine a diagram with three areas. These areas contain the relation (!) of your strength or your execution time to your opponent´s. For example, if you finish faster, you put your action into the first area. If your opponent is faster, then you put the alternative in the third area. Alternatives that come out as a stalemate are put in the second area.


Insert the known alternatives into the diagram. Then try to find other alternatives. This structure helps you to look in specific directions. Imagine your opponent is much stronger than you. He withstands the armbar, and even raises his elbow as an attack in your direction. This takes you by surprise, and your own arm is forced back. This allows the opponent´s elbow to come close, and perhaps even to hit you. There are more alternatives. Either you have experience of what might happen, or you have to rely on other approaches to generate possible alternatives.


At this point, you have a relatively good description of the alternatives and their possible outcomes. Take a look at this and decide whether you can reach your own goals. Usually at this stage, only the armbar is considered a success. The other alternatives are considered a loss. Furthermore, you have to be faster and stronger to reach the desired result. The following solutions can be constructed by using certain analysis and synthesis tools. Their application and the boundary conditions are too much for one blog entry, so I am just presenting the solutions. These solutions are not perfect, but they will at least turn the complete loss into a stalemate or a small win. If you really want to do the math, then these solutions need a much more in-depth discussion.


The first alternative, the opponent slips away with his elbow – or the second alternative, he slips away with his shoulder, can be adjusted by changing your body tension. Imagine you change the direction of your push towards your opponent’s head. The original direction for the push is part of this direction, since your opponent´s arm acts as a barrier. So, as the intended armbar is evolving, the additional force is nullified since the opponent’s arm blocks the possible path. If your opponent is only trying to slip his elbow away, he is opening this barrier at the same time. The body tension drives your arm towards your opponent’s head. With some luck, it’s a hit. The reaction time to sense and identify the changed situation is zero.


The third alternative, the opponent’s attacks with his elbow, can be improved too. Imagine again changing body tension. The first version of the armbar just included the body tension to press your own arm forward against the opponent´s elbow. Now you try to firmly lock your arm against your body while pushing forward. This way, your opponent´s push has to overcome your whole body weight and not only the force that you can generate with your arm. In the best case, your opponent will push you back and you won´t even notice it at this moment. Again, the reaction time is zero.



As you can see, the movement is constructed in a certain way, and deals with different alternatives without the need to react. It is a first example of how to construct context-sensitive movements. You still have to decide whether the results are acceptable alternatives. In this example, I have declared the emerging alternatives to be acceptable outcomes. You can decide otherwise.



The post was published 23. May 2014 related to the category Miscellaneous and tagged with , .