Tonight’s second lesson saw the beginning of my new client’s course on Personalised Martial Arts Cross Training. This is a course advised for individuals with pre-existing martial arts experience that are looking to expand their personal skillset. It is at the heart of what I teach and puts the individual firmly in the centre position. We began with a look at natural proactive postures for combat. These generally fall into a type of staggered stance that is adjusted in accordance with the conditions of the combat.
I opened up this point of the lesson with a theory on the evolution and development of hand-to-hand combat. We first looked at weapons. We looked at the rear hand clubbing action set up with the sensory tentacle of the obverse/lead hand. One might theorise that the ancestors of humans held their target with the lead hand and struck with a blunt object with the rear one. A broken blunt object probably gave birth to the first edged weapons and the loss of said weapon lead to the fighter realising how the fist could be used in a combative sense. We can even see comparisons in the way the bow is drawn.
We began with the natural unarmed interview stance position adopted for preserving personal space in a self-defence context. This is where you find what Geoff Thompson calls “The Fence”. However, it should be noted that the fence isn’t a specific stance, but a concept that allows the user to take charge of a volatile situation before the onset of interpersonal violence.
From this position my client showed a natural inclination to strike using a hooking or round hand strike. We used this to develop the power or ear slap technique used once the fence is touched. We looked to refine this move using some restrictive training. My client struck whilst having limited space, learning to engage her oblique muscles, hip flexors after driving the force up from her feet through her legs. We then looked at the reverse action, the backhand strike and then brought them into a fluid self-defence combination.
Next we turned to boxing and began turning the sensory tentacle of the fence into a probing jab. This set my client up to throw a rear hand hook punch. We then combined hooks from both hands.