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How to increase 'fight' over 'flight'?

fighting conflict real world situations boxing training

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#1 TheFountain

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 04:25 AM


We do not like it generally, but sometimes we are involved in conflicts with other people which can become physical. Sometimes we feel the 'fight' and sometimes we feel the 'flight'. It seems to be a rather random phenomenon, which to me is not good enough.

I am wonder how we can give the 'fight' portion of the instinct a push so that one feels more confident standing his ground in the face of opposition, particularly physical opposition.

I have been doing some boxing exercises lately which involves a lot of shadow boxing and footwork and it helps a little with confidence but not as much with the above.

Are there supplements one can recommend? A type of food? Other ways to increase the 'fight' hormone and elevate it above the 'flight' one?

All ideas welcome.

#2 mikeinnaples

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 12:36 PM

This is a tough one because I am not entirely convinced there is a supplement you can take for this, or that you would want to anyways. I honestly believe that this is a mixture of social impact, experience, training, and confidence that regulates how a normal person responds in these type of situations. Take for example the USMC where they specialize in turning inexperienced kids into confident killing machines. They attack a person in all the areas I mentioned above, and beat it into you on a daily basis. The social impact of letting your fire team, squad, company, or brother down. Inspiring self confidence by teaching you how to handle yourself in situations and providing you with the needed experience through repetition. etc.

#3 mikeinnaples

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 12:39 PM

And yes I do realize I used an extreme example. I did so on purpose because there is no greater fight or flight decision than the one you make in combat when your life is on the line. Gun fire and explosions raining down on you.... do you pick up your rifle, fight back, and possibly die ...or do you run away to safety.

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#4 Galaxyshock

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 01:06 PM

Increase dopamine and testosterone.
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#5 mikeinnaples

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 01:33 PM

Does high testosterone actually equate to higher adrenaline? As far as I can recall adrenaline is the 'fight'.

#6 mikeinnaples

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 01:40 PM

Also, I know dopamine is involves in the synthesis of adrenaline, but does elevated levels of it actually increase adrenaline output in fight or flight situations? I always looked at dopamine as the 'reward' chemical for making it through a fight or flight situation due to the euphoria is can cause.

Quite a bit out of my area of knowledge with this though.

#7 TheFountain

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 04:44 PM

This is a tough one because I am not entirely convinced there is a supplement you can take for this, or that you would want to anyways. I honestly believe that this is a mixture of social impact, experience, training, and confidence that regulates how a normal person responds in these type of situations. Take for example the USMC where they specialize in turning inexperienced kids into confident killing machines. They attack a person in all the areas I mentioned above, and beat it into you on a daily basis. The social impact of letting your fire team, squad, company, or brother down. Inspiring self confidence by teaching you how to handle yourself in situations and providing you with the needed experience through repetition. etc.

Yes but realistically I do not plan to join such an organization.

I am looking for ideas on how to train myself in normal situations. I have seen guys who smoke, drink and eat crappy diets and yet still have this 'fight' instinct in high gear over the 'flight' one. Sometimes it alarms me despite the fact that I know I likely only have to hit them twice and they are down if a situation arises. I think some of this is my fear of hurting other people. But sometimes it is unavoidable, as when someone would try to hurt my woman.

#8 TheFountain

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 04:45 PM

Increase dopamine and testosterone.


Best method of accomplishing this? I have cut all soy out of my diet for about a year now but I wonder if that caused any long term problems with hormones.

#9 TheFountain

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 04:47 PM

Does high testosterone actually equate to higher adrenaline? As far as I can recall adrenaline is the 'fight'.


But couldn't adrenaline be the 'flight' as well, depending on whether it is tinged with anger or with fear? I guess the question would then be how do we accomplish anger fueled adrenaline responses in favor of fear fueled adrenaline responses? Is it just testosterone? I also wonder if inhibiting DHT would effect this. I have been taking saw palmetto for quite some time. Before that soy isoflavones.

Edited by TheFountain, 29 June 2012 - 04:48 PM.


#10 mikeinnaples

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 05:07 PM

This is a tough one because I am not entirely convinced there is a supplement you can take for this, or that you would want to anyways. I honestly believe that this is a mixture of social impact, experience, training, and confidence that regulates how a normal person responds in these type of situations. Take for example the USMC where they specialize in turning inexperienced kids into confident killing machines. They attack a person in all the areas I mentioned above, and beat it into you on a daily basis. The social impact of letting your fire team, squad, company, or brother down. Inspiring self confidence by teaching you how to handle yourself in situations and providing you with the needed experience through repetition. etc.

Yes but realistically I do not plan to join such an organization.

I am looking for ideas on how to train myself in normal situations. I have seen guys who smoke, drink and eat crappy diets and yet still have this 'fight' instinct in high gear over the 'flight' one. Sometimes it alarms me despite the fact that I know I likely only have to hit them twice and they are down if a situation arises. I think some of this is my fear of hurting other people. But sometimes it is unavoidable, as when someone would try to hurt my woman.


Your example the crappy eating, smoking drunk having 'fight' in high gear is probably due to a lifetime of 'training' from a social standpoint. I would suspect having brothers that you constantly scuffled with as a kid could provide that for you as well. For me personally, I had a healthy dose of fight in me even before the military due to sports and my step father pushing me in that direction.

#11 TheFountain

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 05:57 PM

This is a tough one because I am not entirely convinced there is a supplement you can take for this, or that you would want to anyways. I honestly believe that this is a mixture of social impact, experience, training, and confidence that regulates how a normal person responds in these type of situations. Take for example the USMC where they specialize in turning inexperienced kids into confident killing machines. They attack a person in all the areas I mentioned above, and beat it into you on a daily basis. The social impact of letting your fire team, squad, company, or brother down. Inspiring self confidence by teaching you how to handle yourself in situations and providing you with the needed experience through repetition. etc.

Yes but realistically I do not plan to join such an organization.

I am looking for ideas on how to train myself in normal situations. I have seen guys who smoke, drink and eat crappy diets and yet still have this 'fight' instinct in high gear over the 'flight' one. Sometimes it alarms me despite the fact that I know I likely only have to hit them twice and they are down if a situation arises. I think some of this is my fear of hurting other people. But sometimes it is unavoidable, as when someone would try to hurt my woman.


Your example the crappy eating, smoking drunk having 'fight' in high gear is probably due to a lifetime of 'training' from a social standpoint. I would suspect having brothers that you constantly scuffled with as a kid could provide that for you as well. For me personally, I had a healthy dose of fight in me even before the military due to sports and my step father pushing me in that direction.


The thing about me is that I use to get into fights in junior high all the time and was pretty much, aside, from the adrenaline rush of the experience, unafraid and unaffected. Didn't care if I won or lost, or more specifically didn't think that far ahead in the situation.

I think something happened to me somewhere between the age of 13-16 that made me begin to fear that kind of confrontation, or the consequences thereof. I wonder if it could have been some kind of hormone shift. Suddenly I was cowering away from fights instead of willfully engaging in them when some Bully would attempt to enter my personal space. I think it might have to do with being severely punished once for a school suspension due to defending my honor against some kid who wouldn't let up. I might have been negatively condition via consequence here.

I just wish I knew how to de-condition myself if this is the case.

#12 niner

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 08:25 PM

I would lose the saw palmetto regardless of what else is going on. This sounds like a situation where some martial arts training could be effective. Once you have the confidence, you will probably find that you don't have a need to use the skills. That must have been some suspension. I hope you never spend a night in the county lockup...
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#13 TheFountain

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 10:37 PM

I would lose the saw palmetto regardless of what else is going on. This sounds like a situation where some martial arts training could be effective. Once you have the confidence, you will probably find that you don't have a need to use the skills. That must have been some suspension. I hope you never spend a night in the county lockup...


Can you explain your reasoning about the saw palmetto?

I have been aching to incorporate some martial arts into my regimen. Till I can I have been teaching myself basic boxing skills. The problem with this is the lack of sparring does not help me adapt to the discomfort of physical contact.

#14 niner

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 12:47 AM

Can you explain your reasoning about the saw palmetto?


It might be anti-androgenic / pro-estrogenic, might increase bleeding. It's supposed to help BPH, which you almost surely don't suffer from, though in a decently blinded study it was no better than placebo. Just doesn't sound like what a man needs.

#15 TheFountain

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 06:52 AM

Can you explain your reasoning about the saw palmetto?


It might be anti-androgenic / pro-estrogenic, might increase bleeding. It's supposed to help BPH, which you almost surely don't suffer from, though in a decently blinded study it was no better than placebo. Just doesn't sound like what a man needs.


Are you of the opinion then that inhibiting DHT is not a good idea? Does it necessarily have to have the side effect of being anti-androgenic if it is also anti-DHT?

#16 niner

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 01:36 PM

It might be anti-androgenic / pro-estrogenic, might increase bleeding. It's supposed to help BPH, which you almost surely don't suffer from, though in a decently blinded study it was no better than placebo. Just doesn't sound like what a man needs.


Are you of the opinion then that inhibiting DHT is not a good idea? Does it necessarily have to have the side effect of being anti-androgenic if it is also anti-DHT?


It depends. Lowering DHT will help if you have BPH, and it will help if you're losing hair. Propecia is a 5-ar inhibitor that lowers DHT. The problem with lowering DHT is that it may also lower your libido. It's an androgen; it might even be part of the 'fight' thing. T certainly is. Then there's the pro-estrogenic aspect- that seems anti-fight. It really strikes me that saw palmetto is the opposite of what you're looking for

#17 TheFountain

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Posted 01 July 2012 - 12:26 AM

It might be anti-androgenic / pro-estrogenic, might increase bleeding. It's supposed to help BPH, which you almost surely don't suffer from, though in a decently blinded study it was no better than placebo. Just doesn't sound like what a man needs.


Are you of the opinion then that inhibiting DHT is not a good idea? Does it necessarily have to have the side effect of being anti-androgenic if it is also anti-DHT?


It depends. Lowering DHT will help if you have BPH, and it will help if you're losing hair. Propecia is a 5-ar inhibitor that lowers DHT. The problem with lowering DHT is that it may also lower your libido. It's an androgen; it might even be part of the 'fight' thing. T certainly is. Then there's the pro-estrogenic aspect- that seems anti-fight. It really strikes me that saw palmetto is the opposite of what you're looking for


I did not know that Saw Palmetto was pro-estrogenic. I thought Soy was. That was in fact why i switched over from Soy isoflavones to Saw Palmetto, even though a couple studies showed the former to actually raise testosterone.

#18 Hip

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 07:51 PM

I found that using the body-buliding herb Tribulus terrestris dramatically increased my fight response. I tend to be wired for flight rather than fight, but TT reversed this. TT increases testostrone levels (at least in rat studies), and this is likely how it works to boost aggression. A normal dose of TT is around 500 mg. If you go as high as say 1500 mg, it tends to unleash a killer instinct personality. Use with caution. The effects of TT wear off after 8 hours or so.
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#19 cheezeweezel

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 02:48 PM

I found that using the body-buliding herb Tribulus terrestris dramatically increased my fight response. I tend to be wired for flight rather than fight, but TT reversed this. TT increases testostrone levels (at least in rat studies), and this is likely how it works to boost aggression. A normal dose of TT is around 500 mg. If you go as high as say 1500 mg, it tends to unleash a killer instinct personality. Use with caution. The effects of TT wear off after 8 hours or so.


In humans, "T. terrestris has consistently failed to increase testosterone levels in controlled studies." [1][2][3]

As per Wikipedia. Okay, not a great source, but it does include a reference chain, so the statement is supported by the abstracts; I just don't know if there are studies with contradictory results, and whether the word "consistently" is an overstatement. If I wasn't so lazy, I'd pubmed more broadly.


[1] Brown GA, Vukovich MD, Reifenrath TA, Uhl NL, Parsons KA, Sharp RL, King DS (2000). "Effects of anabolic precursors on serum testosterone concentrations and adaptations to resistance training in young men". International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism 10 (3): 340–59. PMID 10997957.
[2] Brown GA, Vukovich MD, Martini ER, Kohut ML, Franke WD, Jackson DA, King DS (2001). "Endocrine and lipid responses to chronic androstenediol-herbal supplementation in 30 to 58 year old men". J Am Coll Nutr 20 (5): 520–8. PMID 11601567.
[3] Neychev VK, & Mitev VI. (2005). "The aphrodisiac herb Tribulus terrestris does not influence the androgen production in young men". Journal of Ethnopharmacology 101 (1-3): 319–23. DOI:10.1016/j.jep.2005.05.017. PMID 15994038.

- cw

#20 Hip

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 05:52 PM

In humans, "T. terrestris has consistently failed to increase testosterone levels in controlled studies." [1][2][3]


Thanks for posting those studies, cheezeweezel.

I have heard about these negative studies before. The interesting thing is that two were performed on young men, who presumably had optimum testosterone levels to begin with. I'd like to see the studies repeated on say 45 year old men whose testosterone was measured to be in serious decline, and see if TT can raise testosterone in these cases.

Another consideration is that, if you are like me, and are wired for flight rather than fight, I actually think this disposition of personality may well be due to abnormally low testosterone (though unfortunately I have not had my testosterone levels tested, so this is speculation). So perhaps TT works best in people like me who may be low testosterone, and of a flight rather than fight disposition.


If TT did not raise testosterone in me, then it certainly must have altered something in order to effect these dramatic increases in "I will hold my ground and fight" aggression I experienced when taking TT.

I remember once when a client said to my face that he would not pay the full money he owed me for some work I had done for him, making up some ridiculous reasons for not doing so. Normally I hate situations like that, because I just do not have the force of anger in me to deal with it. However, on this occasion, I just happened to had taken 1500 mg of TT two hours earlier (as I was on my way to the gym later that afternoon, and I took TT for the gym). As a result of taking this TT, as soon as I got this financial "slap in the face" from him, I uncharacteristically exploded in anger! I mean exploded, incredible hulk style. I was almost foaming at the mouth with anger! I was very surprised at this response myself! My words to him became so belligerent, that he soon changed his mind about not paying me the money he owed! A nice outcome — and one that would never have happened had I been my normal pacifist, conflict-avoiding self.

Edited by Hip, 23 July 2012 - 06:14 PM.

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#21 TheFountain

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 04:12 PM

In humans, "T. terrestris has consistently failed to increase testosterone levels in controlled studies." [1][2][3]


Thanks for posting those studies, cheezeweezel.

I have heard about these negative studies before. The interesting thing is that two were performed on young men, who presumably had optimum testosterone levels to begin with. I'd like to see the studies repeated on say 45 year old men whose testosterone was measured to be in serious decline, and see if TT can raise testosterone in these cases.

Another consideration is that, if you are like me, and are wired for flight rather than fight, I actually think this disposition of personality may well be due to abnormally low testosterone (though unfortunately I have not had my testosterone levels tested, so this is speculation). So perhaps TT works best in people like me who may be low testosterone, and of a flight rather than fight disposition.


If TT did not raise testosterone in me, then it certainly must have altered something in order to effect these dramatic increases in "I will hold my ground and fight" aggression I experienced when taking TT.

I remember once when a client said to my face that he would not pay the full money he owed me for some work I had done for him, making up some ridiculous reasons for not doing so. Normally I hate situations like that, because I just do not have the force of anger in me to deal with it. However, on this occasion, I just happened to had taken 1500 mg of TT two hours earlier (as I was on my way to the gym later that afternoon, and I took TT for the gym). As a result of taking this TT, as soon as I got this financial "slap in the face" from him, I uncharacteristically exploded in anger! I mean exploded, incredible hulk style. I was almost foaming at the mouth with anger! I was very surprised at this response myself! My words to him became so belligerent, that he soon changed his mind about not paying me the money he owed! A nice outcome — and one that would never have happened had I been my normal pacifist, conflict-avoiding self.


But the question is does tribulus cause hair loss?

#22 Hip

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 04:28 PM

But the question is does tribulus cause v?


If hair loss is an issue, take good DHT and 5AR inhibitors like saw palmetto, astaxanthin (potent 5AR inhibitor) and evening primrose oil (which will work unless your hair loss is driven by high TNF-alpha, another major hair loss cause).
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#23 TheFountain

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 07:16 PM

But the question is does tribulus cause v?


If hair loss is an issue, take good DHT and 5AR inhibitors like saw palmetto, astaxanthin (potent 5AR inhibitor) and evening primrose oil (which will work unless your hair loss is driven by high TNF-alpha, another major hair loss cause).


I already do take saw palmetto. But the other question which arises is how much of this 'fight' mode is attributed to DHT? Niner mentioned something about this earlier.

#24 hadora

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Posted 22 August 2012 - 01:22 PM

In humans, "T. terrestris has consistently failed to increase testosterone levels in controlled studies." [1][2][3]


Thanks for posting those studies, cheezeweezel.

I have heard about these negative studies before. The interesting thing is that two were performed on young men, who presumably had optimum testosterone levels to begin with. I'd like to see the studies repeated on say 45 year old men whose testosterone was measured to be in serious decline, and see if TT can raise testosterone in these cases.

Another consideration is that, if you are like me, and are wired for flight rather than fight, I actually think this disposition of personality may well be due to abnormally low testosterone (though unfortunately I have not had my testosterone levels tested, so this is speculation). So perhaps TT works best in people like me who may be low testosterone, and of a flight rather than fight disposition.


If TT did not raise testosterone in me, then it certainly must have altered something in order to effect these dramatic increases in "I will hold my ground and fight" aggression I experienced when taking TT.

I remember once when a client said to my face that he would not pay the full money he owed me for some work I had done for him, making up some ridiculous reasons for not doing so. Normally I hate situations like that, because I just do not have the force of anger in me to deal with it. However, on this occasion, I just happened to had taken 1500 mg of TT two hours earlier (as I was on my way to the gym later that afternoon, and I took TT for the gym). As a result of taking this TT, as soon as I got this financial "slap in the face" from him, I uncharacteristically exploded in anger! I mean exploded, incredible hulk style. I was almost foaming at the mouth with anger! I was very surprised at this response myself! My words to him became so belligerent, that he soon changed his mind about not paying me the money he owed! A nice outcome — and one that would never have happened had I been my normal pacifist, conflict-avoiding self.



P-L-A-C-E-B-O

if you want to be extremely agressive take some trenbolone and you will really become like Hulk :)

Edited by hadora, 22 August 2012 - 01:25 PM.

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#25 Hip

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Posted 22 August 2012 - 04:53 PM

P-L-A-C-E-B-O

if you want to be extremely agressive take some trenbolone and you will really become like Hulk :)


I very much doubt that it was a placebo effect, as I had no idea at that time that Tribulus terrestris has aggression-boosting properties. I thought this herb was just an energy booster.

So if it were a placebo effect based on hypnotic suggestion, I would not have felt aggression, but increased energy.

Ergo, not a placebo.

#26 Galaxyshock

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 06:33 AM

Yes it seems that the steroid-like chemicals in Tribulus plant have controversial evidence of effectiveness. But it's considered to have tonic qualities in traditional medicine of both China and India so there might be something to it. Doesn't Tribulus also contain harmala alkaloids? Those are potent MAO-inhibitors.

In my experience supplementing Manganese provides quite a dopamine boost that definitely gives me extra courage. Siberian Ginseng is also very effective to provide somewhat combative mood and a lot of stamina. Acquiring some quality muscle mass will surely help.

#27 Galaxyshock

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 09:42 AM

D-Aspartic Acid and Zinc are the most legit for testosterone boost I believe. Tongkat Ali has some evidence behind it too.

#28 Raptor87

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 05:54 PM

Adrenaline? NO, you need norepinephrine. I made a thread about it sometimes back.....

Psychologically? Aggression training and confidence training! Self esteem comes before confidence. Get that sorted out before jumping on the next wagon.

Block DHT? No, DHT increases aggression.

You want a quick fix, check out Mibolerone!

#29 suspire

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 11:25 PM

This has been mentioned before, but I'd say the most effective way would be: sparring.

Once I started Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and did live training/sparring, it changed my response system without a doubt. I am much more confident in my hand-to-hand capabilities. Moreover, they've been tested in a pretty vigorous environment, since our academy has high level practioners who have won many national and international competitions. I gained as much losing to my fellow classmates as I do winning any practice bout for a simple reason: I get much more comfortable being put in a bad position, feeling pain, being in a choke, etc. You learn to control your body and your body's responses to such situations. In the beginning, I used to panic and freak out. Now, I keep calm and in control and respond appropriately. If I competed in major competitions, I'd probably be even better at such control, but the cons outweigh the pros for me--I already broke a finger in sparring (getting thrown) and I am not interested in more accidental injuries. Live sparring is enough for me.

So spar. With competent and skilled training partners you trust. You seem to like boxing, so go box. I don't particularly enjoy being punched in the face (on the other hand, I don't mind being choked, so I guess your mileage may vary), so while I do also add kickboxing on the side, I don't do live sparring. Just pads in class--which is enough for me. I feel the impact of a heavy punch and kick and that definitely is a wake up call (and once again, an opportunity to practice control).

#30 Raptor87

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 04:20 PM

Yes sparring! But for some they never have developed the fight ability because of societal norms. So sparring can be like shooting in the dark for some. They don´t know how to mentally shift in to the fight mode and fighting can become even more discouraging.

I found an anecdote, not so reliable but it mentions methyltestosterone, again an highly androgen steroid.

For fighters and steroids I found this thread. (If you are going down that path).





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