How to fight
As with all animals, humans are born with the instinct to fight for self-preservation. The basic fighting instinct is rudimentary and may certainly be improved upon and has been improved upon for thousands of years. It has become a sport, a job, and a way of life for many people, such as martial artists. To survive a fight and possibly even be the winner, you must know how to fight effectively.
Fight on your terms, not on the attacker's terms. As in an old West gunfight, no matter how fast you are, there is always someone else faster. The trick is to fight on your terms, such as by positioning yourself so the sun is in the opponent’s eyes. If your opponent is faster and better than you are, you should outsmart him or her by doing the unorthodox. You must always stay in control of the fight. This does not mean that you will not be hit; it means that you are in overall control of the situation. You make sure the opponent does what you want them to do and not fall into their trap. Never allow the opponent to get to you. Once an attack is imminent, you must take control and attack first.
Never give your intention away. Don’t go into an obvious fighting stance or show hand positions that indicate you know how to fight. Use a shallow stance and keep arms free to move. By not looking defensive, you will have an edge since the opponent will not expect an attack. If you do not look aggressive when first confronted, this will also be in your favor if the matter goes to court. Once the fight begins, most anything goes.
No matter the style of martial art, students of that art train under certain rules. These rules tend to exploit the advantages of the style while downplaying its disadvantages. You should know the strengths and weaknesses of each method of fighting so that, when facing an opponent that uses a different fighting method than your own, you will be able to avoid the strengths and exploit the weaknesses of the opponent's fighting method.
Some martial arts stress avoiding an attack by using body movements and deflecting blocks. Other martial arts stress confronting an attack with hard blocks and strikes. When an avoider fights a striker, the avoider should not attack but make the opponent come after them.
Striking arts train to fight in close range clashes, so stay outside their range. It is difficult to strike a strategically retreating fighter without making an extraordinary effort. Avoiders should watch for this extraordinary effort and strike when the opponent is committed to the attack.
Strikers use their hands for blocking and attacking. When the arms or body are being held (clinching), the referee stops the fight and moves the fighters apart since the action is stopped. By holding and clinching a striker, you remove most of his or her weapons.
Kickers need long-range, so, when an avoider fights a kicker, the avoider should either stay out of range, stay in very close range, or clinch. Quick kicks and punches are difficult to execute from a stationary stance, but the techniques are very powerful. Powerful kicks and punches are difficult to execute from a mobile stance, but the attacks are quick and snappy.
If you are not in a grappling martial art, do not grapple with a grappler. Make them come to you and then counterattack. If taken down, avoid submission holds and attack vulnerable areas as you seek to escape.