In a self-defense situation is it possible to recognize the preparation level of a possible aggressor only looking at him (stance, way of moving, etc.)?
No. We cannot be sure, we can try to read some of the most common signals but we cannot and we must not be sure.
The difficulty comes from these reasons:
- An intelligent opponent hides / lower his real skills until they are completely necessary (in a true self-defense scenario we will rarely see, for example, a boxer assuming his guard position until it is strictly necessary); if we face (eg. during a quarrel) a person assuming immediately a declared guard stance without a real need, probably he simply has fear and he is not an expert, but this does not mean that he is not dangerous at all
- A good fighter can be so sure of himself (a wrong attitude) to have the arrogance of exposing himself not showing immediately his combat settings (eg. provoking us without a guard, etc.); this does not mean at all that will be easy to defeat him (this could also be a trap)
- The fact that we recognize for example a Judo stance, does not mean at all that the opponent knows only that martial art (with its approach, techniques, limits, strong points, etc.), it only means that it is possible that he knows something about it, nothing more
Let’s always accept the odds, reject certainties.
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Author: Master Kongling
Founder of 6 Dragons Kung Fu.