The Speed Loop

The Speed Loop is comprised of the seven components of speed and their relation to each other when applied in competition or self-defense. As a speed student, it is imperative that you thoroughly understand the Speed Loop.

You will learn about successful advanced speed training concepts. You will also learn about the useless concepts that you should abandon in competition and self-defense.

 Applied Speed vs. Demonstration Speed

Before you learn about successful speed training concepts, I need to first bring to your attention some speed myths that might be somewhat confusing.

Can you really hit a person 20 times in one second? Well, let’s see. It depends on the distance from your hands to the target. If your hands are just one inch from the target, then it might be possible—in theory.

But, if you are attempting to throw 20 fully extended and retracted punches from your chest in one second—forget it! I am 6’2″ tall, with long arms. I can’t possibly pull that stunt off. The truth is, nobody can!

Now, let’s add the factor of realistic fighting. Ask yourself: What kind of damage can 20 lightning punches do in one second from a one-inch distance? You would be moving so fast that your punches would look like one blur—an impressive demonstration for sure!

In a physically threatening confrontation, I would much prefer to throw one explosive and destructive finger jab through the eyes than to throw 20 light taps to the body. Which tactic is more likely to stop an attacker?

For another comparison, you have probably seen movies in which a martial artist wielded a pair of nunchucks. When demonstrated by a trained weapons person, this flashy weapon can give the impression of supernatural speed.

Most novices, unfamiliar with using weapons in martial arts, view this as real speed. It is demonstration speed—not applied speed.

Simply ask anyone who understands the benefits and limits of weapons in combat. They will choose a plain stick over the nunchaku every time. The nunchaku appears more impressive, but the stick performs better for self-defense purposes.

What are the odds that you will spot a pair of nunchucks lying on the ground if you are attacked on the street? Not very good. Maybe you won’t find a stick either. But what you should do is utilize what is readily available in order to defend yourself. Use whatever you can get your hands on! 

Applied speed in fighting is much more intricate than a simple demonstration. The variables and intensity levels are not comparable.

Do not be seduced by outlandish claims regarding the effectiveness of a particular style or weapon. It is the individual who determines the effectiveness of the style or weapon. Ultimately, the level of your attributes, knowledge, and experience against that of your opponent will determine your success in competition and self-defense. 

 C.C.S. Principle

As a speed student, you must make consistent use of the C.C.S. principle or Combat Common Sense! Combat Common Sense must take precedence over theoretical notions. In theory, it would seem that a trained black belt in Karate could easily defeat an unschooled street thug. Combat Common Sense will tell you this notion is not necessarily true.

Do not believe in theories until you have successfully applied them in realistic training. When you fully believe in a concept and understand how it works, you can apply that concept decisively, in the midst of combat, without second-guessing its validity.

Do not ignore your common sense! Use it as a finely tuned scam detector. The more adept you are at avoiding spurious myths, the more easily you will hone in on the essential concepts that will accelerate your improvements in combat speed.

Be truthful with yourself concerning the strengths and weaknesses in your Speed Loop. Most people concentrate too much on their strongest components, to the detriment of other, underdeveloped ones. This is one of the biggest mistakes made by beginning students. But, this will not be you. You will develop a strong and balanced Speed Loop!

In order to improve consistently and continuously, you must vigorously search for any weaknesses in your loop that need immediate attention and development. At the same time, you must maintain your strongest components.

Remember: Your Speed Loop is only as strong as its weakest individual component!

Isolation Principle

The isolation principle is used to make rapid progress in each Speed Loop component, thereby achieving maximum total speed improvement in the shortest possible time. 

Using the isolation principle requires that you totally involve yourself with “here and now.” This is where your absolute power lies. Do not concern yourself with “there and then,” which deals with false perceptions of power.

You should maintain this sense of purpose, in the present, throughout every phase of every training session. For speed purposes, realize that five minutes of intense component training is more productive than fifteen minutes of lackadaisical component training.

Here are some other key points on isolation training:

1. Begin by clearing your mind and reviewing the exact component(s) you will be training, prior to beginning any exercise or drill.

2. Concentrate intensely on developing that component by giving it your total, undivided attention.

3. Train where and when you will not be disturbed unless there is an emergency.

The more you can break down an attribute in training, the more productive your training will be. That is the purpose of the Speed Loop. It provides a vehicle through which you can effectively use the parts of the whole to make a significant and rapid impact on the whole.

Speed Training Tip

You should focus on the maximum development of each individual Speed Loop component. By doing this, you will train more effectively and achieve superior combat speed in the shortest possible time. To help you simplify and focus your training, I have included a summary of training at the end of each chapter. You can use these summaries as the basis of your combat speed training plan and schedule.