Sticks and Knives Together, A Beautiful Thing


Blend 25


We talked recently about the Inosanto Blend 25 and how there are really over 60 strokes.  I assume that 25 is a gracious plenty for most people to remember.  Not unlike any other martial arts system, you can follow the rabbit hole much, much further.  As many Kali systems as there are, you can continue learning for a lifetime, just like Guro Dan has.


Anyway!  Last night we added in some extra flavor with the knife.  In between every two strokes with the stick, we added a lovely little knife thrust.




We practiced our defenses against angles 1 through 5 and added a follow-up after each, the “X” pattern. 


Angle 1: Inside deflection

Angle 2: Outside deflection

Angle 3: Low wing

Angle 4: Drop stick

Angle 5: Abaniko


These are great, with the added footwork, for the practice of shadow boxing, or Karensa.


Stick Strips/Disarms


We took a look at various disarms off the same five angles.  I discovered some idiosyncrasies that I didn’t know I had, like when I perform a roof or umbrella defense.  You just never know how you look through other people’s eyes, and our bodies do so many things of which we are not consciously aware.  But I digress.  My favorite disarm is off the drop stick (defending angle 4).  It really has style, but I might indulge in it too much, admire my handiwork and get my head taken off.  I also really like the vine off the angle 1.  I often wonder how often I might actually get a disarm—just have to work REALLY hard to make it a gross motor skill.  And then. . .a big, fat maybe.  J


Knife Disarms


Knife disarms are sexy, no doubt.  The feeder used a bacal, or icepick grip (think Norman Bates and Psycho) and fed angle 1.  The tech practiced catching the wrist/hand on the inside and outside with the left hand and going to the inside with the right hand.  The key points:


  1. Grabbing the meat of the thumb and getting the wrist lock to break the grip.
  2. Striking with your open hand or the knife for distraction before you go into the disarm.
  3. Not slicing your hand to ribbons as you strip the weapon!  (Of course, I have been told on many occasions that if you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of knife fighting, YOU WILL GET CUT).

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