Forest School of Karate booked me for their seventh session in the full “When Parents Aren’t Around” course. This current trilogy of lessons concern anti-grappling. Last time I introduced the class to the role grappling should play in self-defence. In high risk situations, it is usually a backup strategy due to the risk of getting entangled and secondary enemies being present. However, it takes on a more obvious role in mid to low level risk situations where control and restraint are usually the order of the day.
We began with a warm-up of relevant callisthenics and grappling-style dynamic stretching, moving onto grappling-based footwork, level changing and cut-offs. Then the entire class revised basic grappling positions and movements in drills with their lockdown partners. Next we looked at symmetrical ground-fighting from the guard, where we covered the hip-bump transitioning into a knee-pin. Finally, we returned to the focus mitt applying the new grappling techniques. This began with hunting, a drill covered previously where the striker hunts one focus mitt whilst being held at arm’s length by the coach (aka posting). With grappling footwork and level changes now in place the hunt is made harder and reinforces maintaining forward pressure whilst being posted by someone seeking to clinch. Next one focus mitt is taken away and the coach now uses their free hand to grip from various positions – collar tie, wrist grip, under-hook and posting.