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Timing vs. Tempo
Tempo is the overall speed of a pattern or an attack combination.
- If the tempo of a pattern is too fast, the pattern will appear rushed and will not score as high as it would at the proper tempo. The same is true for tempo that is too slow.
- Sparring tempo helps set the intensity of the sparring action. At a high tempo, attacks are coming fast and in great numbers. A high tempo may be difficult to sustain due to the high energy output required. If one fighter has a higher tempo than the other, and he or she has the endurance to maintain the high tempo, then he or she will probably win since he or she will fire many more attacks than the other. Even if the slower tempo fighter gets in a few powerful shots, the accumulation of attacks from the high tempo fighter will probably overpower the slow tempo fighter.
Timing vs. Rhythm
Rhythm is group of timing intervals. The intervals may be even or uneven.
- A steady rhythm with even intervals between attacks makes the attacks predictable. If the rhythm of a combination (such as a jab-jab-cross combination) is always even (such as 1, 2, 3) the opponent learns to anticipate each attack.
- A broken rhythm with uneven intervals between attacks makes attacks unpredictable. If the rhythm of a combination (such as a jab-jab-cross combination) is sometimes uneven (such as 1 , hesitation, then 2, 3) the opponent may be caught unprepared.
- The intensity of sparring action may also have a rhythm. The tempo may be varied in a rhythmic manner, such as a flurry of attacks followed by varying periods of defensive rest.