Tuesday, June 3, 2014

More or Better: Sports Imitates Life

Earlier, I posted on the blog for one of my companies about the daily decision I  make, whether to make more levels of the games or go back and improve the existing levels.

People might think that's a no-brainer and instantly reply,

"Better, of course!"

Let's think about that for a moment, though. We make games to teach math, so along with being fun, each game has to have a sufficient amount of math in it to justify kids taking time out of the school day to play it. We have a game that teaches word problems using division and multiplication. Our next game teaches fractions, which teachers, research and our own experience tell us are really important to getting into abstract concepts as in algebra. Maybe we end up with students who are super at algebra but have no understanding of statistics.

Which brings me to teaching judo. Some instructors will have a student do the same throw 10,000 times. We've all met those people. Either they throw you with seoi nage (a shoulder throw) or they don't throw you because that's all they have, but they are good at it.

On the other hand, you have the people who know every kata and claim they can do 67 different throws, but you never see them throw anyone in a tournament with any of them.

When teaching, I aim for a spot between the two. Every practice, I try to split evenly between standing and matwork. When a tournament is coming up, I put off teaching anything new, and try to focus on getting what they do know better. After the tournament, I'll start on learning more techniques.

I found it interesting that in an interview last week Ronda mentioned that her mom still calls and reminds her all of the time,

"Are you working on your arm bars?"

which is true, but that she also works on striking and other skills that "open up the way to Arm Bar Town."

It's not just better versus more, but also making sure that the "more" you add fits in with what you already have. I wrote about that in an earlier post - the Lego theory of matwork  - which circled me back to thinking about how can THIS relate to business. With a few seconds thought, the obvious struck me, that you need to focus on what your core business is and build off of that.

Excuse me, now I need to email a few people about business ideas. (Yes, for real.)

------------- SHAMELESS PLUGS -------
You can buy my book Winning on the Ground, here

and you can buy our new game, Spirit Lake: The Game, here. 


Unknown said...

Mrs. DeMars,
As usual you are...always thinking, always 'connecting the dots'
People who are in perpetual 'thinking' mode had to have been and assuredly still are avid readers as I am sure you must be.
...and that thought made me think of that young female fighter that beat Shayna on Tuf 18. Pena, I believe, is her name.
She made a comment to an interviewer stating that "she had never been a 'big reader",which translates to," I read nothing but twitter texts and facebook comments"
Utterly embarrassing, but I don't think she even realizes this.

One more thing, Mrs. D...
I have watched all of your daughter's fights many times as I am sure you have.
I was trying to determine which opponent was the 'as close to near' equal to her in strength only.
My final determination was Kaufman with McMann a close second. I know the fight was short but aren't they all? What made me do a 'double take' was the way Kaufman kept her hands locked for as long as she did before succumbing.
What do you think??
I hope you don't mind me rambling on and asking questions about things not directly related to the post.
Thank you again for the one and only blog that I never miss.
Mike R.

joe wilson said...

Mrs. De Mars,
I became an instant fan of both you and Ronda after viewing "Breaking Ground: Ronda Rousey". My comment might be alttle different than what you normaly read but I believe to be of the most urgent.
Ciggerattes kill more people worldwide than anything else but our government looks the other way due to the massive tax they levey on them.Pretty much says right on the package they will kill you but people in denile just keep smoking
anyway.CVS department store says they will be no longer be selling ciggeratts after October this year.I thought why would they do that? People will just go to Walmart, Wallgreens exc. to pick them up and whatever else they need.But now I'm hearing people who have lost loved ones to cancer are grouping togeather and are starting to boycott the stores , gas stations etc. that still sell them.What I'm looking for is someone such as yourself and Ronda to champion the cause . Perhaps when the government sees the effort being made by the people to stop the sales they will jump in and stop the manufactue of ciggerattes . Please jump in and attack as you would any other opponent you've face down . My wife smokes 2 1/2 packs a day and there is nothing I can do to stop her.
Thanks for your time,
Joe Wilson joe102448@aol.com