Sometimes, it's not enough to just practice in a "fair" way. Getting really good at something implies the ability to do it even when there are factors impeding the person doing it. This trope is an intentional invocation of this, by having the trainee devote themselves to what would otherwise be a routine training session with additional restrictions. Examples include:
- Attempting to use normal abilities while under the effects of a Power Limiter
- Doing a strenuous activity with additional weights bound to the trainee
- Asymmetric sparring... the trainer has a distinct martial advantage over the trainee, such as longer reach, padded armor, or is simply bigger and stronger
- Attempting something that requires deep concentration while there are distractions, ranging from obnoxious noises to a whole other facet of training to deal with
- Attempting common tasks in a manner the trainee is not familiar with, such as fighting while leading with their other hand or wayfinding in foreign territory
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Anime and Manga
- Dragon Ball Z. Goku is a fan of this trope, regularly training with absurdly heavy weights and/or while under the effects of high gravity.
- Accidentally invoked by Guts, who was raised in a mercenary band and thus started training with swords meant for adults. As an adult, his swords are still longer than he is tall.
- After the Eclipse, Guts' self-imposed training involves things like chopping one-handed through logs falling down a waterfall. Of course, in this case it's because he lost an arm and an eye in the Eclipse, so he needs unusual training to get his new body back in fighting condition.
- In True Villains, Sebastian suffers a crippling magical attack on his Aura that constantly drains his Life Energy, forcing him to spend hours a day doing grueling exercises to replenish it. This earns him Charles Atlas Superpowers when he finds a mage to heal his aura and is able to retain and use all that power.
- Spoofed on the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "You're Fired, Mrs. Puff", when the new boating teacher makes SpongeBob run the obstacle course blindfolded. It works, only now SpongeBob can only drive while blindfolded.
- Swimmers will sometimes train while wearing extra clothing, like leggings, to give them more "drag" in the water. Once they get good at this, in theory, when they swim in a regular suit they'll be faster, because it's easier by comparison.
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