….. and here we are…. I think learning is possible, as I’ve discussed—and hopefully demonstrated. Possible is on the ticket, but what makes it probable? What makes learning physical skills online not only possible but probable? Nothing. Not. A. Damn. Thing.
The reality is that it’s not any more probable than learning in a school. But it is possible.
Yeah, it’s not more probable than learning a physical skill in person. You absolutely heard me correctly. But honestly, it’s not a comparative issue, the issue is whether or not it is a legitimate method. It absolutely is legitimate. Period. Deny it if you want, but you’re just trying to bolster your own perceptions. There are online schools for physical skills outside of self-defense, self-protection, combatives, and martial arts. They exist, are accredited, and can give you licensure.
The real deal is that it takes adaptation by the teacher to create opportunity for learning and, more importantly the student. Yeah, the burden is not entirely on the instructor. Shocker. The following items are bits that I have noticed are necessary traits of the student that is at a distance and wants to learn online.
- They must be able to hold themselves accountable to practice.
- Instructors should give them opportunity to help in that way.
- There needs to be a regimented process for reviewing and critiquing video.
- There needs to be a peer-to-peer process (often the most difficult to maintain)—because it creates local accountability.
- Instructors need to connect regularly to maintain the sense of belonging to a group and a community.
- Some sort of driving factor that is bigger than most people’s personal vision—a cause.
- A format for the student to engage the instructor in a personal, direct, and meaningful way that relates directly to their study.
If these points are met, success is obtainable. It will likely take longer, and certainly requires more self-discipline on the part of the student, but it is within their grasp. It is not magic but does require that the individual be willing to work when nobody is looking, sweat when there is no consequence, be open to critique and inspection via video, and be willing to ask questions that may feel obvious after answered.
Having said all of that, there’s no obvious difference between that and the way that I trained with teachers—the exception being that I would need to be willing to do whatever was needed to find a peer-to-peer training method. This is one of the biggest struggles for people wanting to train at a distance. One person is not enough in my experience.
Find a group. Create a group. Get 5 people involved so 2-3 are there every time. Commit to a training time that is regular and formatted. Invest in the learning process and smash through it as quickly as possible so that you can start a group with confidence. Slow is not your friend. Sprint! Sprint!