My short term memory sucks too bad to train!?

Discussion in 'Muay Thai and Kickboxing' started by jag88, Aug 19, 2015.

  1. jag88

    jag88 White Belt

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2015
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    9
    So this is half a question and half a frustrated rant. So I am new to martial arts in general, I did some karate when I was a kid but I was a little thing and I don't remember shit, so it really doesn't count. But Muay Thai has always been on the top of my list of "sports I really want to get into".

    I used to weigh like 305 Lbs and I lost 150 Lbs and now I am in pretty decent shape and I wanted to put it to good use. So I joined a local boxing gym that has a Muay Thai class 3 nights a week.

    The instructor is a super nice guy and he seems to know his shit and he is very patient with me, but the classes are pretty big (ranging from 10-25 people depending on who all shows up that night). So I only get a few moments of 1-1 instruction every night.

    Most of the time we are just doing different pad drills or evasion drills etc. I haven't got to the point where I can spar yet, still got a ways to go.

    During the drills he always comes up with the combo he wants us to practice... its not like it's this set numbered combo like "yea tonight guys were practicing the #13 combo!". He just makes them up on the spot, then demonstrates them to the class with one of the more advanced students... he will demonstrate it usually 3 times before he pairs us off and lets us practice (then he walks around to each pair and gives pointers).

    Heres the problem though... the combos are always so long damn long it is impossible for me to remember them, he could show me 20 damn times and I still wouldn't remember the order. Its like jab, jab, cross, jab, L hook, R hook, jab, cross, rear round house kick, R straight kick, jab, jab, R upper cut, R uppercut, front round house kick, L straight kick, jab, jab or some ridiculously long and complicated combo like that. And I can NEVER remember it, ever.

    I fuck it up every single time and 100% of my brain power is going into simply remembering the damn combo, so much so that it is impossible for me to think about improving my form. Oh I am standing flat on my rear foot instead of the ball? Yea forgot about that because I was wondering if it was jab next or a round house kick. Oh I didn't move my shoulder when I threw the cross... thats because the only thing I could think of was whether or not the next move is a hook or an uppercut, so on and so on.

    Thing is, no one else in the class seems to have this problem. Even people who started after me have already surpassed me with ease. Its gotten to the point where no one wants to pair up with me because it is a waste of their time to practice with me. The instructor has to assign someone to me because otherwise no one would pair up with me, and I can tell they are pissed when he does it but they try to be nice about it. And it doesn't help that I am super shy (I have aspergers and severe social anxiety).

    I feel like the class dunce. And I am not a dumb person, I am very intelligent, I have a high IQ and a masters degree in computer engineering. But my intelligence is more of slow methodical strategic kind of thinking not a fast on the spot tactical kind of thinking. I feel completely defeated.

    I want this more than just about anything in my life. I want it so bad I can't get it out of my head. I've got Muay Thai on the brain all the time and I am willing to do whatever it takes to get better. But because of my shit'tacular short term memory I don't know what I can do to improve.

    I got really upset with myself at the last class because of it, I almost walked off the mats and left the class to go smash the heavy bags for awhile because trying to do the pad drills was practically impossible for me.

    I've said something to the instructor about it but he just says that I will get it in time and that I will develop muscle memory for it... but to me that just means he doesn't understand the problem. My body not knowing how to move is a different problem entirely, and I do believe that with practice that issue will improve drastically. But it's my inability to actually do the drills in the proper order its making participating in the class impossible and very frustrating. I've tried some memory games (like on lumonosity), but it doesn't seem to help.

    Any thoughts, opinions, suggestions?
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2015
  2. 2 COOL

    2 COOL Purple Belt

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    1,914
    Likes Received:
    117
    Location:
    Palm Springs CA
    All I can say is what helped me when I trained.. I admit I have not trained in years now lol =(. I ended up taking private one on one lessons for a few months. By the instructor having all his attn on me only it helped. Then when I felt up to speed I went back to the regular group class, I needed to, to get better by training with all body types/sizes/skills Also I would go over what I learned at home, every night I would practice it some. I was having problems throwing hooks I was not doing it correct and even my instructor showed me the right way several times and said at home in the mirror go over it over and over, so I did . I know private lessons are higher, but for me they really helped get me going. Some stuff I would also write down, and again practice it alone at my house during the days I was not there. Again this is what helped me, might be crap advice to someone else, but still wanted to say it
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2015
  3. 2 COOL

    2 COOL Purple Belt

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2004
    Messages:
    1,914
    Likes Received:
    117
    Location:
    Palm Springs CA
    also I remember at home certain trapping, at that time I was taking ( JKD ) I would go over it again, and again, and again lol and that ( for me ) helped bring me up to speed
     
  4. Dangerbyeyes

    Dangerbyeyes White Belt

    Joined:
    May 24, 2014
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    13
    A good technique for memory is to visualize yourself doing the movements. So when he's up there demonstrating, see yourself in your mind in 1st person view, and kinesthetically feel yourself doing those movements.

    I.e. if you're supposed to be on your toes don't visualize that from a 3rd person point of view, feel your calves tensed as if you're actually on your toes. Whatever muscles are involved, try to feel them.

    And visually you should see the kick or arm as it would happen in real life.
     
  5. MasterNinjaRat

    MasterNinjaRat Blue Belt

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2014
    Messages:
    735
    Likes Received:
    183
    This worked great for me, and also as your coach demonstrates the techniques you can also shadowbox them as he explains them. Ive seen quite alot of people get their combinations right by shadowboxing them before going to pads. I think many coaches would agree.

    Also, maybe watching muay thai, or any fights (competitive with right technique) might help big time.
    And last, do your homework. Try to remember those combinations that you did as detailed as possible and do them slowly at home. Keep going to the gym and im sure you will get it straight if you dont give up.
     
  6. Canned Tuna

    Canned Tuna Silver Belt

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2009
    Messages:
    11,307
    Likes Received:
    7,777
    Location:
    St. Louis
    Being relaxed helps a lot. Based on what you said, it seems like you're probably a pretty tense guy. If you're worried about screwing up and are more focused on that than on really digesting what he is showing then it will be hard to retain. I know that is easier said than done, but it is important to be comfortable and confident in order to perform well at any capacity.

    It always helps me remember little things better when I understand the bigger picture. In this instance it would be understanding how one strike could be setting up the next so that the combination as a whole makes sense.

    As a side note, that is strange for your instructor to have people drill such long combinations. I assume that you're exaggerating a bit, because you said everyone else is catching on without a problem, but if it is as bad as you say that's abnormal. In the handful of gyms I've been in, I've never seen a class designed for beginners drilling combos of more than 4 or 5 strikes. Sometimes they'll do one combination then add another to it in succession, but never just throw it all on at once.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2015
  7. jag88

    jag88 White Belt

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2015
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    9
    Nah they are legit 12+ move combos. Sometimes he will give us shorter ones that are 4-6 moves long and those are much easier for me to remember but most of the ones he gives us are really really long.

    This is all great advice btw! I definitely do see other students shadow boxing the moves as he is showing them to us. I'm gonna try that. And I definitely do want to do some 1-1 training with the guy but I can't afford it at the moment, but I do plan to at some point.

    I'm also not gonna give up but the last class definitely made me realize that the way I was approaching this just wasn't working, if I want to improve I need a new strategy. I don't want to be that person who trains the same way over and over and never improves.
     
  8. jj manchester

    jj manchester Internets. Serious Business.

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2006
    Messages:
    2,846
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    you're just putting a lot of pressure on yourself and the resultant stress is clouding your mind and ability to retain technique
     
  9. jag88

    jag88 White Belt

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2015
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    9
    Probably has a lot to do with it, I am definitely my own worst critic and tend to stress out. The environment itself is already so far out of my comfort zone that just going into it puts me in an on edge mindset which probably makes it harder for things to sink in past a superficial level.

    So at least I have some stuff to think about and work on now:

    1. shadow boxing the moves as he demonstrates them.

    2. Chilling the fuck out (not sure how exactly I am gonna do that yet).

    3. Continue to work on my crappy short term memory

    Mind you, my short term memory and quick thinking ability is crappy in other aspects of my life too. I am not much of a "thinking on my feet" kind of person, I am more of a "let me think about that and get back to you" kinda person... which isn't gonna work for this. It's like the first time in a very long time that those circuits in my brain have been used, there are cob webs up in there
     
  10. Cap_reD

    Cap_reD ANTI ZUFFA ZOMBIE

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2005
    Messages:
    257
    Likes Received:
    30
    Location:
    Ham-ill-ton
    Do you smoke pot? I used to not be able to retain information much without muscle memory and when I hadn't been training for awhile my muscles weren't even picking up on movements like I used to. I started doing what a previous poster said and try to visualize how I'm doing things this especially helps on the ground with no mirrors if you ever get into bjj.

    Making changes in your smoking schedule can help if you are a smoker I used to think it was disrespectful to go in red but I do now at least once a week and usually retain more and offer better or more open minded advice to others.
     
  11. jag88

    jag88 White Belt

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2015
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    9
    I used to but I stopped about 2 months ago (I quit cigarettes at the same time). Now all I smoke is an e-cig with nicotine, no THC to speak of. So this shouldn't be the issue. I will say this though, the more tired I get during the class the harder and harder it becomes to focus on what is going on.

    I am definitely still working on increasing my endurance to stave off the exhaustion. I jog, cycle, and do light weight lifting outside of class... it definitely seems to be helping a lot... the very first class I had to go to the bathroom and puke, hasn't happened since. Now though I don't seem to get exhausted until like the last 15 min of class or so.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.