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PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 1998 1:13 am 
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Location: Richmond, VA
To all: I've just received Raffi Derderian's new 'Basic Knife' video and it is a great guide to get a feel for how to use this weapon. For those of you who attend the summer camp at Buzzards Bay you will remember Raffi as one of the regular instructors. The tape rates a thumbs up from me.

Rich


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 1998 1:55 pm 
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Location: Richmond, VA --- Louisville, KY
To all

When I first started learning Uechi ryu, I was taught the concept of simultaneous block and attack. To me it became the mantra of how our system was to be applied in self defense - a marque of the style's efficiency. Many, many years later, I have heard some prominent people in the martial arts community preaching a New (tm) and radical (oooooo!!) concept - that there are no blocks in their kata. Not to be obnoxious but....I'm glad they've caught up with the standard of Uechi-style fighting (and the standard of playing chess for that matter). It seems that many people in the martial arts world have been stuck in the dumbed-down mode of the way they were originally taught.

Along those same lines, the Filipino stick and knife fighting that Raffi teaches falls right along those lines. No motion is wasted. Every block is an attack. Every deflection of your partners thrusting knife is an opportunity for you to cut. Furthermore, the movements are fluid and continuous. It is a southern-Chinese-stylist's dream. If it weren't for that creeping baldness, I'd swear that Raffi was Kanbun reincarnated. The only thing I might do differently from Raffi is the footwork. But then I'm just a beginner in this stuff; I may change my mind.

But seriously folks, I highly recommend you consider Raffi's material as one of (or the) weapon diversions of your artform. Raffi's knifework is one of the most practical (and even sobering) methods of lethal destruction short of a gun. And for those of you into the beauty of movement, those needs can be satisfied too.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 1998 11:24 pm 
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Location: Boca Raton, FL
Rich,

How does one get a copy of Raffi's new video?

Moe


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 10, 1998 12:22 am 
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Location: Richmond, VA
Moe: Raffi has a price list with 14 videos on it. Email him at XRAFF@AOL.COM and I'm sure he will mail you the list/order form. BTW Raffi sensei - your order form has no address on it.

But to be really good, I think you need the official vest. Raffi sells those as well.

(Raffi: As your now exclusive business rep on this site, what is my percentage?)

Also, high praise from Bill G. sensei as seen above is rare indeed. Starting this Saturday the knives and sticks are going to come back out in our dojo!

Rich


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 10, 1998 2:35 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 08, 1998 6:01 am
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Location: Johnston, RI
Hi all,
Rich Sensei, glad you liked the tape. The editing of the new videos has gotten a lot better since the knife video. But the content of the knife and the stick video is what is really important anyhow.
Bill, I am extremely flattered by your praise of my Arnis program. I promise not to let it go to my BALDING head. The Kanbun comment was amusing to say the least.
Your footwork could be fine. When I was teaching at U.Va. last summer with you guys, I taught very basic footwork. With your diverse background, you might be naturally doing a more advanced (and correct) method of footwork. Use what works best for you, to hell with something that you find awkward, even if I say it.
Anyone interested in videos should contact me at Xraff@aol.com
Best wishes all,
Raffi


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 10, 1998 3:46 pm 
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Location: Richmond, VA --- Louisville, KY
Raffi

As for the playful jab, don't worry - I'm certainly vulnerable to blows at the masculinity. For free material, just call my wife.

As to the footwork, well I would indeed like to address that. After learning some of the movements in Uechi kata and doing many goju bunkai, I have learned both the value of attacks of the front leg as well as the danger in putting too much weight on it. Maybe I'm going overboard (or maybe my own developing abilities are flashing opportunities in front of my eyes) but I see more than a few talented martial artists doing things that seem to make them vulnerable. When you watch a classic boxer throw a right, often he will shift weight onto the front leg and get up on the ball of the back foot. This isn't a problem where blows below the waist are illegal. It's a big problem on the street where there are no rules. In fact if I REALLY have to face someone who has a knife (which I'd never do if I had the choice), attacks to the leg seem to be one of the lower-risk opportunities.

What I watch when I see you do your work is a very free kind of footwork that seems to be part boxer, part street fighter. My training makes me want to apply some discipline to where the weight goes w.r.t. the front leg. I like the bobbing, angling, rotating, diagonal stepping, etc, etc. It's that boxer's pose at the end of a rear-arm thrust that rankles my instincts.

Am I being to obsessive? Is this overkill for someone who has the opportunity to put you through a meat slicer? Are there opportunities gained by breaking out of my mold?


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