THE THREE GREAT KEYS TO COMBAT: Of all the activities that humans can partake in, none is more chaotic and unpredictable than fighting. THE WHOLE PURPOSE OF MARTIAL ARTS IS TO USE KNOWLEDGE AND TRAINING TO THE OUTCOME OF COMBAT – TO CONTROL CHAOS. The history of combat sports clearly show that there are definite limits in our ability to do this. IN A WORLD OF UNCERTAINTY THE BEST WE CAN DO IS TO STACK THE ODDS IN OUR FAVOR AS BEST WE CAN. When I coach, I constantly stress to my athletes the need to assert themselves in three critical aspects of combat sports that play a huge role in determining the probability of the outcome. The athlete who can control the DIRECTION of the fight, the PACE of a fight and control the SET UPS and precursors to the main moves used by both athletes will win the vast majority of the matches he or she enters. This a huge topic that cannot be addressed in an Instagram post, but I shall give a simplified example. Georges St-Pierre is a quintessential example of an athlete who career was built around the three general keys to combat. Mr St-Pierre almost always was able to immediately dictate the most basic direction of a fight. If he wanted it on the floor he could put it there at will with his double leg. If he wanted it to remain standing, he was notoriously difficult to take down and hold down. With regards pace, he was always capable of slowing a match on the and tiring a dangerous puncher there. He could always return to center octagon and increase and generate movement that would set up double legs in the open. With regards set ups, in standing position, he had a complete arsenal of feints, misdirections, jabs and linked Superman punches that enabled him to use his king weapon, the double leg. On the floor he had an elaborate collection of protocols and striking from guard that created pressure to set up his Queen weapon, strong striking allied to guard passing that led either to submission,TKO or a dominance that won the round. In the chaos of fighting, we can never fully determine the outcome, but devoting your time to the of these three key aspects of combat will always give you your best chance