Wednesday, March 28, 2018

EARLY UFC LESSONS

Whether your interested in self-defense or just martial arts in general, there are many lessons we can learn from watching the early UFC events. 

The most famous was that in North America, up until the UFC, grappling wasn't considered to be effective when strikes were allowed. 

So now we can say that grappling can be extremely effective even when striking is allowed. 

The next most famous statement is that cross training is necessary to be effective.
This is actually inaccurate because people seem to think that this means you need to be well rounded.

To be successful in the UFC you need to cross train in certain specific styles, not so that you become well rounded, but so that you know how to deal with other strategies. 

Case in point is that there have been many champions in the UFC that specialize in one area, yet they became champions.   

If you follow my logic, you can be a Boxer, but you need to be a Boxer that can defend against take downs, kicks, submissions, the clinch, the ground, and have the ability to steer the fight to your area of specialty which is Boxing.

The next lesson is something I have found on my own trying to make sense out of everything.
There are basically three kinds of people that entered the early UFC.

From weakest to most successful. 
1. Martial Artists
2. Tough Guys
3. Athletes

A martial artist is a regular person that has martial arts skills.
A martial artist can beat a regular person that has no martial arts skills.

A tough guy will beat a martial artist because a tough guy is not a regular person, on top of that they have street fighting skills. So let's say that the street fighting skills and martial arts skills cancel each other out, all that's left is a tough guy versus a regular person. This is why the tough guy wins.
Some people will say that martial arts skills are better than street fighting skills but they are underestimating street fighting skills. Martial arts skills may encompass a larger wealth of knowledge but much of that may not directly affect the actual combat. Martial artists learn things like philosophy, history, spirituality, health, and teaching skills. 

At the end of the day the athlete reigns supreme because they are tough, have skills, and have a much higher work ethic and ability to perform than the others. They are a small percentage of the population. 

Now that tale doesn't end there, you have to consider what I'm about to say next. Most people can do martial arts, it was designed for the average person. Not everyone is a tough guy, not everyone can be a tough guy. Being an athlete is so difficult that most people can't be a life long athlete, or at the very keep training at a high level for many years.    

So the lesson here is that you start as a regular person. 
Learn martial arts and become a martial artist.
Then try to become tougher and tougher.
Then try to become as close as possible to an athlete as you can.

If you want to know how good you are, just compare yourself to what an athlete does everyday. 



Tuesday, March 27, 2018

SELF DEFENSE

So you want to be able to protect yourself on the street? 
Well self defense skills begins with honing your body mechanics.

It’s the same as someone that wants to get good with a yoyo, you just pick the darn thing up and keep playing with it. 

So you should pick up a pair of sticks and keep playing with them. 
From there you put in the time. 
You got to have a good work ethic. 
That develops focus and discipline.
The focus is needed in a street altercation, because it’s very easy for the mind to wander off and start thinking about stupid stuff. 
You need to focus on the task at hand. 
What is happening, what do I need to do to survive?

Instead most people think about stuff that is not going to help them.
I can’t believe this is happening to me!
What will my friends and family think when they see me in the hospital or dead? 

The discipline is needed to become stronger. 
Keep in mind that the criminal that is going to attack you is a different breed of person. 
The criminals are predators that grew up in harsher environment than you, they have a different mind set. 

So you will need to be mentally and physically as strong as you can get. 

The Heaven 6 is perhaps the most famous technique in Filipino martial arts. 
It is a combo that can be done continuously with double sticks, single stick, double knife, single knife, stick and knife, empty hand, improvised weapons, and more.

Many people take for granted and don’t realize just how brutal the Heaven 6 really is. 
It is one of the most violent technique ever known to human kind! 
If you did the Heaven 6 with a machete in each hand, you can beat just about anybody. 

The Heaven 6 with a knife in each hand turns you into a wild animal. 

Even without weapons, just using your bare hands, the Heaven 6 is incredibly violent, relentlessly clawing, grinding, and striking using your fingers, fist, palm, forearm, and elbow.    

The Heaven 6 pattern flows, it’s a natural figure 8 movement that is incredibly efficient and can be changed making it extremely deceptive as well. 

The violent capabilities of the Heaven 6 is needed because a physical altercation is violent. 
If you can’t accept violence then you will be freaking out by the violence that is happening rather than focusing on what you need to do to protect and survive. 

So practice the Heaven 6 like an addiction, and make sure that you also make yourself as strong as possible. 
If you don’t do this kind of training then you won’t have skills to fight back. 


If you can't fight back, then you have to take the same approach as a rabbit in the forest. Sneak and hide from the deadly animals.

The various Heaven 6 techniques and tactics will help make your Heaven 6 better, but it's just useless info if you don't put in the practice. 
How much should you practice? 
It depends on how serious you are about not becoming a victim. 
The more effort you put in, the more you get out of it. 

Sunday, March 25, 2018

CHOREGRAPHY TRAINING

Choreography training consists of two or more martial arts practitioners following a fixed set of moves.

Martial arts choreography training is pretty similar to theatre or dance. The main difference is that martial arts choreography training is done for skill development rather than entertainment purposes. 

Choreography training is done in many traditional martial arts.

Because choreography training is prearranged, it is looked down upon by those who focus more on sparring.

The fact of the matter is, while choreography training may not be as realistic as full contact sparring, it's the next best thing.

The reason why many martial arts practitioners of the old chose choreography training over full contact sparring probably had to do with safety issues.

Medical technology was not as developed back in the day, and injury was not a risky people were willing to take in an already harsh life.

The quality of life has become better today, and some people are willing to sustain injury for the purpose of developing better abilities.

SPORT VS STREET

Many people feel that combat sports are not practical or effective on the street.  
In fact many people believe that it will get you killed on the street.

I completely disagree.

People don't want to give combat sports any credit primarily for one reason.
Combat sports have rules, while a street altercation does not.

The people who think this way are forgetting the fact that combat sports is designed to help a person develop a specific set of skills under rigorous competition as safely as possible.

Competitors are developing fighting skills under the limitation of rules, which allows them to develop their skills to a high level.

The founder of Judo, Prof. Jigoro Kano understood this.
The difference between Judo and Jiu-jitsu was that many of the Jiu-jitsu techniques were considered too dangerous so the Jiu-jitsu practitioners didn't spar. The Judo people on the other hand took the techniques that were safer to execute and sparred and competed with each other.

When the two schools fought, the Judo guys came out on top. It doesn't mean that Jiu-jitsu doesn't have valuable material to offer, but it does mean that sparring and competing will give you the ability to better execute your techniques.

And I believe that is the main lesson here, it doesn't matter if you have lethal moves if you can't execute them.

Think of it this way, who would you rather bet on, the person who uses dirty moves or the person who knows how to fight?

Also keep in mind that if a person knows how to fight they will be in better position to do the dirty moves.

These specific set of skills developed through combat sports can be applied effectively in a specific street situation.

The key is to know when and how to apply your skills.

  

POINT FIGHTING

Point Fighting is a combat sport where contestants compete to be the first one to score the first valid strike. Excessive force is not allowed.

Many practitioners of full contact combat sports look down on Point Fighting.
Many people view Point Fighting as a glorified game of tag, so they do not think of it as effective or realistic for the street. 

I completely disagree.

Like any other combat sport Point Fighting develops a specific set of performance skills under competition. Competition creates the environment of psychological stress and physical opposition.  

The skill set developed in Point Fighting is the skill set needed for Long Range fighting.
Long Range fighting is the safest fighting distance a person can be in.
If you are in a real life altercation with weapons involved, it would be smart of you to be in Long Range. When attacks are exchanged you will want to be doing it in a game of tag like manner.

Believe me you will not want to be Kickboxing with your opponent when weapons are involved, because even the victor could be extremely hurt.
Think about it, the victor of a Kickboxing match usually takes some good hits too. Just imagine if it was done by a weapon, the damage could be much worse.  
 

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

THE 4 RANGES OF COMBAT

In Eskrima we are taught the 4 Ranges of Combat.

1. Long Range
2. Medium Range
3. Close Range
4. Ground Range

Even though the 4 Ranges of Combat is commonly taught, most people are just like, in Long Range I'll use kicks, in Medium Range I'll use punching, in Close Range I'll use elbows and knees, and for the Ground Range I'll use wrestling and submission holds. 

This is not enough, chances are your opponent will be thinking the exact same thing. 
So we need to take the extra step and define the characteristics of each Range.

Long Range
Difficult to successfully attack a person from here. 
The person who controls the distance has the advantage.

Medium Range
Not enough time reaction time to see the opponent's attack and select the appropriate technique.  
The person who causes significant damage first has the advantage.

Close Range
Also called the clinch and grappling energy will be applied here.
The person who has control over their opponent has the advantage.

Ground Range
Mobility becomes limited here. This is a good place to finish someone, but your also committed.
The person who has the better position has advantage.

Monday, March 19, 2018

2018 nb STICK GRIPS

The most common way to hold the stick seems to be with one fistful sticking out after your pinky.
I call this grip the Tail Grip.
The area that is protruding at the bottom is used for striking, hooking, and pinning.

The next most common grip is to hold the stick at the very bottom.
Following the same concept as the Nunchaku. 
The lower you grip towards the bottom the more power you get, while you get more control the closer you grip towards the center of the stick.
Holding the stick at the very bottom is what I call the Power Grip.

I want to introduce a 3rd grip that I find very useful.
I call it the Knife Grip.
The idea is to hold the stick with 2 fistful amount of stick sticking out on the bottom.
This grip will allow you to simultaneously practice your stick techniques and Reverse Grip knife techniques.  
This is very important because most people I see on Youtube seem to prefer using the knife in the Reverse Grip yet they are very awkward with it.

If you were interested in learning Reverse Grip, the old school way was to hold the stick in the Reverse Grip which would be the opposite of the Power Grip and hold the stick at the very top.
I practice this way too, but I find that holding the stick in the Knife Grip is more of a direct correlation to handling a knife in the Reverse Grip.

Three Stick Grips
1. Tail Grip
2. Power Grip
3. Knife Grip

Practice your forms and techniques using these grips, so that you are getting triple the practice.
Remember you need to put in the repetitions to get better, there is simply no way around that. 
 

Sunday, March 18, 2018

2018 nb COMBAT SPORT AND STREET DEFENSE

If you want to be able to handle yourself in a physical altercation, believe it or not you need to train in a combat sport. 

There I said it, and I mean it. 

I'm not dissing traditional martial arts, I'm telling you my formula. 
My formula is to use combat sports as a base, then add stuff from traditional martial arts and even modern tactical methods. 

It doesn't matter that there are rules in combat sports, the main idea is that you need to know what it's like to go head to head against an opponent that is fighting back. 

Many people don't want to give point fighting any credit, it's still a combat sport.

Even though I didn't know it at the time, when I was training in Kuk Sool Won, I was developing point fighting as my base. Of course I learned other materials such as joint locks and grab escapes, but when I actually fought I used point fighting.

Later I learned many Jeet Kune Do stuff that I applied to my point fighting. This included Savate style kicks that used the shoe to good use, finger jabs to the eyes and throat, foot jabs to the knee and shins, and the infamous oblique kick.   

I also learned Muay Thai Kickboxing. My Muay Thai skills were very basic, but I could clash shins with people and come out on top. I added other kicks to my Muay Thai base such as the axe kick and spinning heel kick from Tae Kwon Do. I also use to mix in a Koppo kick where one hand would touch the floor as I kicked high.  

The problem with combat sports is the injuries. No injury is worth it, so you need to experience combat sports as much as you can and then get out as fast as you can. After that you can do traditional martial arts for the rest of your life. 

In fact it may also be good to do traditional martial arts before you do combat sports because it's much easier. Traditional martial arts can act as a good prep school and then you can graduate to combat sports. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

2018 nb IMPROVISED WEAPONS TRAINING

Improvised Weapons skills are good to have for self-defense.
It means that you have the ability to take an everyday common household item and use it effectively as a weapon.

Being able to choose the correct object is also part of the skill. 
Making a good choice requires prior experience of handling a similar object. 
Therefore you should actually train with everyday common household items.
Some items are too brittle, others are too awkward to hold.

Since our fighting skills come from the sticks, the goal is to transfer as much of your stick skills to the item at hand. 
Some things are easier to transfer your skills better than others. 

To help adapt to different items, you can start by training with sticks of different sizes.
When you train in double stick, make sure that the two sticks are not equal in size.
Normally when just working on double stick skills you want both sticks to have similar dimensions so that your not distracted and can focus purely on skill. 
However when training for improvised weapons, getting use to different sized weapons is critical.  

Furthermore stick fighting techniques can be trained in 4 different ways.
In other words you use your imagination to handle the stick as if it were each kind of weapon. 

1. Impact Weapon
2. Bladed Weapon
3. Flexible Weapon
4. Projectile Weapon

Friday, March 9, 2018

ASSASSINATION VS DUEL

I have heard many people criticize martial arts knife training.

Their main argument is that in real life, if a person really wants to use a knife on you, they will hide the knife and sneak up on you. In other words they want to assassinate you. 

Yet most martial artists don't train in this scenario.
The training done in most martial arts does not involve assassination methods but instead dueling methods.

It's important to realize the difference between assassination and a duel.

To assassinate someone, you want to sneak up on them like a Ninja and take them out when they are least aware and most vulnerable.

A duel is when two people face off against each other and they are both aware of the situation. 

Most martial arts people train knife for dueling whether it's offense or defense. 

In modern times nobody duels anymore, so it's understandable why people criticize martial artists practicing knife duel methods.

There is one critical point though, the best way to survive an assassination attempt is to turn it into a duel.

Using your awareness, you must thwart the assassination attempt, once you do that, it will naturally become a duel. 

The first step is awareness. I have a system for awareness. I call it the RWEDT Alert System.  

Thursday, March 8, 2018

2018 nb MUAY THAI KICK

When a Muay Thai fighter faces a fighter from another discipline, many times they revert back to the leg kicking strategy for a completely dominant victory. 
You know, like the lumberjack chopping the tree down with his axe. No matter how big the tree, it eventually goes down.

You can see countless Muay Thai fights where leg kicks are used to crush those from other disciplines.
That tells you how effective leg kicks can be.
I advise you to take the time to sharpen up your leg kick so that it can be devastating.

When I first learned it, it began with just shin conditioning. 
I was told to kick everything in sight and I did, wooden table legs, steel poles, tennis rackets, glass bottles, Escrima sticks, and even banana trees.

The basic roundhouse kick taught in Tae Kwon Do, Karate, and Kung Fu is a good place to start. 
1. Get down the mechanics and develop control.
2. Then focus on angle in relation to your target. In other words, depending on where you and your opponent is at, you can gain or lose power in your strike. 

The next step is about converting to a Muay Thai Kick.
1. Aim with your knee so that you will hit the target with your shin rather than your foot. 
2. Your kicking leg should push off the ground with your toes. 
3. Twerk your shoulder, torso, and waist into the kick, also using your arms. 
4. This last step is the hardest part, it involves learning how to turn your base foot while doing everything else. 

If you look at  power kickers they turn their base foot all the way, like an axis on a spinning top. 


Saturday, March 3, 2018

2018 nb KNIFE DEFENSE LONG RANGE

KNIFE DEFENSE LONG RANGE

Know that we don't want to be barehanded. 
We want to be in Long Range or further away.
Try to have an obstruction between you and the enemy.
If they want to assassinate you, you need to be aware.
Thwart the ambush by being aware and making distance.
When they fail to ambush you, it turns into a duel.

When you have the distance, it's ideal to take it step by step.

1. Distance Checking
2. Checking
3. Grab
4. Secure

Distance Checking helps you know if you can see and follow their movements.

Checking means that you can make contact on their attacking arm.

If you can grab their hand you got to wrap it up immediately to secure your hold.

Once you've secured their arm, the worst thing that can happen is when they pass the weapon to the other hand. 
Do not let them pass the weapon to the other hand, because you have no control over their free hand.

You should be thinking about disarming the enemy once the arm is secured. 

To disarm the enemy, you need to weaken their grip on the knife. 
You can weaken their grip with strikes, joint locks, and having them off balance. 
Once the grip is weak you can use any number of disarm techniques such as prying the knife out, striking the knife out, or grabbing the knife out of their grip. 

2018 nb ESKRIMA COMBOS

ESKRIMA COMBOS

For exercise I can string together an infinitely long combo. 
But in real combat I don't want to combo more than 4 moves. 
Unless your Roy Jones Jr. don't do combos of 4 or more. 
There is no need for a super long combo because combos can be chained. 
Super long combos are bad because nobody can keep up the speed for long. 
Super long combos will zap your energy tank. 
Instead of doing super long combos it's smarter to chain short combos together.

We are going to take a look at the Angles of Attack Form #5. 

Angles of Attack Form #5: 
1. Downwards diagonal slash from the top right to the bottom left.
2. Downwards diagonal slash from top left to bottom right. 
3. Horizontal slash from right to left.
4. Horizontal slash from left to right. 
5. Stab to abdomen. 

Extract combos from this form by breaking it down into bits and pieces. 

Example of a two-hit combo from the Angles of Attack Form #5.
A) 1, 2
B) 2, 3
C) 3, 4
D) 4, 5

Example of a three-hit combo from the Angles of Attack Form #5.
A) 1, 2, 3
B) 2, 3, 4
C) 3, 4, 5
D) 4, 5, 1
E) 5, 1, 2