The first of the focus based strategies I want to examine is the Fake. The fake is epitomised in the phrase ‘send him left to go right’ and is concerned with sending the opponent the wrong way, making him believe that you are attacking him high when you are really going low for instance. We can see the fake in almost every sport and see it often in tennis where an opponent is sent the wrong way as the ball hits on the opposite side of the court or in Rugby or football where the tackler is sent the wrong way allowing a player to pass as he gets closer to the goal.
In martial arts the fake can be attacking the head only to switch the attack to the legs when the opponent responds or throwing a punch to left side of the head when in fact your real target is the right side. The fake is such a common ruse that we often don’t think twice about it, it’s so natural that often we don’t even have to be taught it. As soon as we begin sparring and realise that our opponent can thwart our direct attacks that we soon learn that trickery works better to help us hit the target on our opponent without getting too banged up in the process. It’s worth pointing out here that if more instructors understood strategy and how to use it better they wouldn’t lose quite so many students who quit when they begin sparring and realise that it’s not as much fun as it looks and it fact it hurts! Too many instructors let their students figure it out for themselves causing high attrition in student numbers.