Kingham Hill Self-Defence Postures (diary entry)

Defence from guard to standing806.02.19


Today my Kingham Hill School class covered Boxing and Muay Thai in their warm-ups, moving on self-defence with an emphasis on fighting through postures.


The warm-up began with straight up shadow boxing. We changed stances, built on combinations and practised our footwork. The jab, the cross, the lead hook and the spear knee were all trained. Then we moved on self-defence.


Self-defence began with training the rear straight hand strike off a natural fence. This is a key area I like my students to train as often as possible when it comes to self-defence (hard skills). The strike was then isolated and trained through postures. We transitioned from combat base (half-kneeling), butterfly (seated) and from the back to standing, working on each of the links. The strikes were added and trained on the focus mitts once this process was fluid enough. Then we moved onto the cover, revising last lesson’s code white test – surprise attack to cover to striking. This was then brought into transitioning postures as well. This time two students were pitted against the rest of the class and ordered to move through the postures whilst covering and counter-attacking before “Exit!” was called and they made their way to an exit point. The lesson concluded with asymmetrical ground fighting, training to cover and fight back up to a standing position against a standing enemy.


I raised the discussion of reactive thinking. Despite the emphasis in the self-defence training culture being on pre-emptive and proactive training, it seems that so much time is still dedicated to “What if someone throws a drunken haymaker at me”. This is something that Iain Abernethy has addressed very well – along with related topics in his podcast episode “Reinventing Violence”.


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