Focus cancel/Focus dash help? ((extreme noob question)

Ive been playing SF4 awhile now and just bought SSF4 (mostly play with friends)
Now Ive been reading watching some EVO videos and reading some tips/tricks and keep reading about the Focus dash thingy.

Can someone explain it to me? Whats the use of it? Cant I just normally dash instead of having to focus for half a second?

pm sent.

It has a few uses, but there are two basic ones.

  1. Focus attacks have super armor, IE, they can absorb one hit. This hit turns into gray health, which slowly regens back. You gain some ultra bar for this. So basically, you can focus absorb a hit, then dash. If you just dashed, you would get hit.

  2. Extending combos. For two ex bars, you can focus cancel out of many moves. In other words, shorten their recovery time. Dragon punch, focus attack dash cancel, ultra, for example. You can’t just dash out of the dragon punch; it sends you into the air if not focus attack canceled.

  1. Canceling some unsafe moves on block.
    eg. Focus cancel a blocked SRK and backdash so that it isn’t as easy/possible for your opponent to punish you for just throwing out an SRK.

No because it cancels out the recovery time of your move, hence the name. Watch the beginners video on FADC.