There is a reason I don’t use the word basics to refer to techniques we learn. If I use the word basic folks will think there is some form of advanced technique. There are fundamentals. There is a beginners understanding, and there are more advanced understanding of the fundamentals however, there are only the fundamentals.

The fundamentals of sight picture, sight alignment, and trigger control are the same for a first time shooter as they are for a shooter with fifteen years of practice and application. The difference is the shooter with fifteen years of work will have a deeper understanding of what is acceptable sight alignment and trigger management given the difficulty of the shot. The fundamentals are still the fundamentals.

The fundamentals of a double leg takedown are the same for the eight year old kid just learning to wrestle as they are for the twenty year old Olympic hopeful. The difference between these two is one has a deeper understanding of how to time and set up the shoot, when to cut the corner, as well as when to bail or chain to something else if the double starts to go wrong. The fundamentals are the same, the understanding is different.

The fundamentals of a jab are the same for a kid just beginning in the local Police Athletic League as for the older athlete with a dozen pro fights under their belt. The difference is the older athlete understands how to use the jab to dictate the pace of the match, manage distance, or setup combinations. The fundamentals are the same, the knowledge as to application is not.

So let’s program ourselves to think in terms of fundamentals and understanding rather than basics and advanced. We will avoid some of the pitfalls that can happen when we start chasing the magic talisman of “advanced” rather than just getting on the mat or in the ring and digging deeper. Watch this footage of the legendary Sugar Ray Leonard and check out the progression of his knowledge and application of the fundamentals of Boxing plus it is simply a pleasure to watch a master at work.