I've added a new book to the 'books of interest' on my blog. It is a printed copy of Brenda Groen's PhD thesis entitled 'Martial arts techniques to reduce fall severity.'
I came across Brenda's work while researching the science being martial arts breakfalling techniques. Quite surprisingly, given the relativly large impact of falls without our society, virtually nobody has looked to the martial arts even simply to investigate the possibility that the techniques taught within the martial arts might have something to offer the wider community at large. This, to me, is symbolic of the relative lack of credibility the martial arts holds within our society. Tennis, golf, any game involving chasing a ball of any size or shape appears to have more credibility than the martial arts in our society. Part of what I hope to achieve is to lead the initial wave in amending this credibility deficit.
Brenda is, not relativly, absolutely unique in looking to the marital arts to look for solutions to problems experienced in the wider community.
I contacted Brenda after researching all the studies I could lay my hands on with respect to 'landing strategies'. The martial arts refers to 'breakfalls', as in breaking a fall, but some misguided individuals refer to these as falling techniques. As the saying goes, it's not fall that kills you, but the sudden stop at the end. The marital arts techniques are pragmatic enough to be concerned with the sudden stop at the end, as is Brenda.
I'm referring to Brenda by her christian name as we've developed a (platonic) relationship based on our correspondence. She is very kind and generous to share her time and work with me. She sent me a copy of her competed and printed thesis before it has been accepted by the powers that be. It includes the results of six diffent studies that she and her colleagues conducted in Holland concerning various aspects of martial arts fall techniques - OK. Sorry Brenda - she also refers to the inappropriately named 'fall' techniques.
I ensured Brenda would not be wasting her time as I did extensive research and contemplation before I deinged to contact her. I always advise anyone to do the work before contacting any academic or 'professional'. I've found many to be very generous and very supportive, but, I'd always done the work before hand. I must have done something right as she informed me the questioned I'd raised over certain other studies were the same ones she herself had raised. This confirmed to me that I was heading in the right direction and at a level I was aiming at.
Brenda's work will be referenced in my proposed Throwing Techniques and Takedown Techniques of ALL Martial Arts book. I'll be maintaining contact with Brenda and will hopefully visit her laboratory, which she has gaciously invited me to do so, next year. I'd love to see if there is anything else the martial arts can contribute to the wider community in addition to dealing with personal violence.
Good luck Brenda and thank you very much.