Beyond Technique: The Limits of Books (and Online Videos) in Developing Self-Defence Coaches’ Professional Judgement and Decision Making in the Context of Skill Development for Violent Encounters
The depiction and description of body techniques of combat have always been a part of martial arts culture. For example, self-defence techniques of the Israeli system of Krav Maga have routinely been depicted and described in books. More recently, the dissemination of similar knowledge has been presented within emerging modern technologies such as online videos and blogs. We argue, however, that such approaches limit and may even harm the development of professional judgement and decision making of self-defence coaches. By focusing on (a) the distinction between declarative and procedural knowledge and (b) the complexity and non-linearity of self-defence situations, we point out the limitations of the depicted and described knowledge in these media (or channels) of communication. In essence, we argue that the focus on providing procedural knowledge to coaches promotes a view that self-defence skill development is linear. These foci ultimately will limit the adaptability of the coach in creating effective skill development programs for practitioners who need to be able to cope with complex dynamics of real world violence.
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