Sunday, June 24, 2012

Drill Post #29: Before A Trap

As I have written about in a long previous post (from my potential book) on trapping, when you try to strike someone, there are four kinds of responses: 1) you successfully connect, stunning them enough to follow up, 2) they evade, 3) they try to obstruct you (whether in a naive or trained way), or 4) they try to tough it out and strike at the same time (or perhaps just happen to strike as you launch your strike). Since my first concern is being as safe/uninjured as possible, then option 4 is of central concern. Dealing with this circumstance, a very possible one, is one of the most neglected parts of training among those that are interested in trapping. Specifically, this is a "pre-trapping" skill, something that you may have to deal with that nullifies trying to trap for that moment. To train this understanding, drill in the following manner. The trainee throws either a mellow jab, cross or jab and cross at the trainer, controlling his punches so as to not quite hit the trainer although being at striking range or false attack range (just outside of a good connecting range) so that the trainer can either strike with impunity (representing the guy trying to just out punch you), OR obstruct you somehow. In the first case, you either abandon the attack and defend, or you continue the attack while defending in an appropriate manner: in the second case you either continue the attack to an open line or, it the energy feels right, trap. The point that is often emphasized on the posts here is that cognitive development is of primary importance in order to make the physical skills work.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Drill Post #28

One of the things that Ted Lucay-Lucay wisely pointed out, was that commonly what happens when two people fight, they both over-aggress and end up looking like two old college buddies giving each other enthusiastic tent hugs. Another way to put it is that they didn't control their striking distance. This is not the same as "fighting measure"as has been discussed in earlier posts, but effective striking range. That is, if  you are trying to strike someone with hand strikes, for example, then as they try to crowd in past your strikes, you need to either keep adjusting your distance, moving back, circling right and left, so that  those strikes are still at a range where they work, OR, you change tools and tactics for the range you find yourself at. This is actually a challenging skill to maintain under pressure, as it's human combative instinct to try to simply out-punch your opponent.

A drill to work maintaining the proper striking distance is to have the feeder with focus mitts, feed a changing series of targets while moving forward or circling in on the trainee while the trainee keeps up a fairly steady stream of strikes while constantly adjusting the distance so as to maintain proper range for the strikes.

It may help as preparation to work simple combinations starting with the following initial movements: a) side step or circle left while initiating a combination, b) side step or circle right doing the same, or c) "drop back step" (i.e. if your right side is forward, drop the right foot forty-five degrees to the rear while keeping your right side forward. This step has many names) initiating a combination with your now-rear hand: that is, if your right side is forward and you drop back with your right foot while firing what is now your right cross. The advantage of this move is that you are retreating while being "active," the euphemistic term for doing something to cause pain to your opponent.

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Hello all, this is just a quick post to say I've joined Twitter and you can follow me @LASelfDefense. Thanks for your continued support and interest. Look forward to reading your tweets.