"Natural" fighting stance

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Postby Stryke » Thu Apr 24, 2008 8:08 am

Agreed Jim , but I do think theres a fundamental lesson to posture .

and at the end of the day its just covering with ones arms .

But am interested in why one terms it natural stance ..... there is something in that , is it common for a reason , or natural ?

but I`m mostly with Mike , the stance isnt what you have to defeat , any static postion is flawed .
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Postby JimHawkins » Thu Apr 24, 2008 9:11 am

Stryke wrote:But am interested in why one terms it natural stance ..... there is something in that , is it common for a reason, or natural ?

IMO it's cultural.. The overall position (general) is mainstream culture and specific variations are sub-cultural (dojo/school)..

The influence of cultural norms (which also expand via pop culture) IMO is the main influence.. Some schools will no doubt create something more stylistic or exotic but MOST folks are similar and often mimic western boxing in this country and many others.

but I`m mostly with Mike , the stance isnt what you have to defeat , any static postion is flawed .

I agree but see some exceptions.

The initial position does create reference points and geometric shapes.. A static posture or ready posture that sets up its own geometry or shapes is setting up its positional/structural strategy even before something happens. The static nature is not flawed IMO unless and until it fails to change in response to what comes next--when it changes it does so to maintain or improve positional dominance.. 'To change with change is the changeless change..'

Then the 'stance' and everything else--must be alive and changing, sometimes changing so fast you'd swear there is no stance--but the good ones will still have the root and alignment in movement.
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Postby maxwell ainley » Sat May 03, 2008 10:55 am

JimHawkins wrote:
Stryke wrote:But am interested in why one terms it natural stance ..... there is something in that , is it common for a reason, or natural ?

IMO it's cultural.. The overall position (general) is mainstream culture and specific variations are sub-cultural (dojo/school)..

The influence of cultural norms (which also expand via pop culture) IMO is the main influence.. Some schools will no doubt create something more stylistic or exotic but MOST folks are similar and often mimic western boxing in this country and many others.

but I`m mostly with Mike , the stance isnt what you have to defeat , any static postion is flawed .

I agree but see some exceptions.

The initial position does create reference points and geometric shapes.. A static posture or ready posture that sets up its own geometry or shapes is setting up its positional/structural strategy even before something happens. The static nature is not flawed IMO unless and until it fails to change in response to what comes next--when it changes it does so to maintain or improve positional dominance.. 'To change with change is the changeless change..'

Then the 'stance' and everything else--must be alive and changing, sometimes changing so fast you'd swear there is no stance--but the good ones will still have the root and alignment in movement.


Jim , what you are saying is; pretty much what I was attempting to articulate on the other thread up to a certain point,but I must confess I am not always overly explanatory,and it all depends were we fix our awareness level's. this is natural and allied to our understandings of subjects ,When I was an apprentice ,a major task given to me was to roll and pick up mortar with the bricklayers trowel ,straight away I could gather this made good sound sense to me ,the position and set up was ; mortar board 4" above ground level , me bent double ,with knees slightly bent ,after two hrs of this position and trowel practice ,I found myself going down on to either knee to rest ,This was insane my young thoughts at work .
After a ten to fifteen min break time ,back to work ,but same thing ,but this time the bricklayer would not let me go down on to knees for a breather ,when he turned his back to me I learned to get a very quick rest , after a few days of this , he now turned around to catch me out constantly ,any call away via the master bricklayer were rest periods from this pain , my back legs and wrists were aching beyond anything I had so far experienced in life .

But after a month of this torture ,I was hung in there ,a new motion was introduced ,a shift from the crouched pick up position with trowel and mortar to a flowing placement of the mortar on to the brickwork ,and these positions were interacted for 8hrs a day in a slow distinct style of movement ,attempt to speed up and I got a slap from the bricklayer ,but he was moving like lightening from crouched pick up to placement ,but picking up a brick also ,two handed work ,to me the crouched position was becoming more comfortable allied with the turn away from the mortar board .

New meaning was coming through to me now , as I watched my bricklayers work ,they wisked through a weeks work in crouched postion doing low level work ,it was childs play to them ,I was now seeing the importance of my uncomfortable initial work that set me up for the other aspects . to truly know this ,one would have to experience with skilled men who knew how much was in that initial learning experience .
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Postby CANDANeh » Sat May 03, 2008 1:34 pm

Worst thing you can do is look down to check your stance during any encounter (street or ring). However, would like my opponent to do so :wink: At a distance I find it restricting to go into my narrow stance (sanchin)
The farther away you are the wider the stance and more blading of the body with lower hands is ideal for speed to go in firing and shifting(try sprinting with hands raised).

Midrange hands higher (just below the wrist height of sanchin position) with the power hand extended forward to control the space between the fighters and little less blading with stance more upright.

In tight...squared off and hands high. Stance is much more upright as no more need to break the distance quickly. This is the work zone for the hour glass stance. Yes, very good options exist to transit to a wider stance but in my opinion it should be to take advantage of the existing in tight situation i.e. take downs in order to drop your center on the opponent.
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Postby JimHawkins » Sun May 04, 2008 8:03 am

CANDANeh wrote:Worst thing you can do is look down to check your stance during any encounter (street or ring).

I think the point of "stance training" or "horse training" is to prevent this kind of thinking or doing..

The idea of this kind of training is to help one find their base or root--from whatever position one finds them self in with a very minor adjustment. The keys to making ground connection, while may be assisted by perfect position are more flexible and when one learns to find them in a obvious position they will be able to find their root from any position and then adapt from there.

CANDANeh wrote:The farther away you are the wider the stance and more blading of the body with lower hands is ideal for speed to go in firing and shifting(try sprinting with hands raised).

Midrange hands higher (just below the wrist height of sanchin position) with the power hand extended forward to control the space between the fighters and little less blading with stance more upright.

In tight...squared off and hands high. Stance is much more upright as no more need to break the distance quickly. This is the work zone for the hour glass stance.

That's valid but not the only way IMO..

There can also be an emphasis on explosive, short changes in position.. One can't hope to be faster (yang) than our opponent for very long throughout a long life..

On the other hand, one may use better timing to make sudden small changes in position in conjunction with his faster opponent to get the desired result (yin).

Long or short can be relative because changes in position between, say, two fighters is relative to both their movements and actions--to their position in the moment.

Of course we're not just thinking in a straight line--right? ;)

The shorter the movement, the quicker it is to execute; easier it is to change, since the CG is changing less and the ability to join and issue grounded force is ever present..

With facing and short, explosive body movements one may execute three movements at once, each arm and the body changing position to maximize structural speed of offensive and defensive actions compressed into a short sudden explosion--and can continue doing so in a fluid, adaptive and rooted fashion.
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Postby Dana Sheets » Mon May 26, 2008 2:28 pm

--and can continue doing so in a fluid, adaptive and rooted fashion.


Only if the the mind is able to keep the body relaxed and fluid throughout the encounter.

The other day I had students use only footwork and body shifting to negate incoming forces. From here forward when I write "footwork" I mean "footwork and body shifting."

Warm up: do tenshin hojo-undo, then have students spend about five minutes free-form moving around the floor flowing from one "stance" to another without stopping. They should slide, turn, get off the line, retreat, shift, etc. through high and low stances and double and single leg stances as fluidly as possible without losing their center or their root. If they lose either they should stop and start again more slowly.

Standing up fighting drill
Step one: both people use only footwork to control the mai (the space between two fighters) with each person doing their best to maintain positional dominance

We did that several rounds with different partners

Step two: one person can now use leg attacks but the other must only use footwork

Step three: both can now use legs for attack and defense but the focus remains on footwork.

Step four: one can now only arms but no legs

Step five: both can use arms but no legs

Step six: one can use arms and legs and the other only footwork

Step seven: one can use arms and legs and the other only footwork and legs or footwork and arms

Step eight: both can use both...oh wait...that's sparring. :D

Outcomes: students were able to use fluid and rooted movements until hands entered the game. Then it was usually less than 20 seconds before one person lost their center

Solution: stop, reset, start again at a slow pace

When I ran this drill we went up (skipping a few steps) from movement to sparring and then went back to doing only the movement and then we did kata using the kata to mentally rehearse different positions.

All of this is out of tenshin stepping in sanchin and hojo-undo.
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Postby JimHawkins » Tue May 27, 2008 4:15 am

Dana Sheets wrote:
--and can continue doing so in a fluid, adaptive and rooted fashion.


Only if the the mind is able to keep the body relaxed and fluid throughout the encounter.

Hi Dana,

I don't know if being that relaxed is that critical IMO..

What I was getting at was a way of moving or a certain kind of footwork.

That in fact one of the reasons for using very short, sort of like shuffling (but not), yet explosive footwork, where the changes are very small and therefore brief, is that it helps maximize the time you are totally rooted/connected to the ground. This also minimizes long bursts of momentum that can cause us to loose our balance, over extend and have such conditions used against us. Also the same short mechanics can be used to generate short power without actually moving and/or loading the lead leg, as is seen in some other kinds of footwork or use of the 'qua'.. A similar kind of stepping if I am not mistaken is found in Sanseiru...
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Postby AAAhmed46 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 7:12 am

CANDANeh wrote:Worst thing you can do is look down to check your stance during any encounter (street or ring). However, would like my opponent to do so :wink:

You can fake it too. Ive pulled off 'looking' at my stance, really to bait the frakker so he can attack me. Works if you pay attention to the attacker.
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Countering drill ..#1

Postby robb buckland » Fri Sep 05, 2008 4:39 pm

This may help to develop the "fluid Posture" fighting position...attacker jabs (forward hand strike) using a sliding step to bridge the gap .The defender shifts weight back 10% making the attacker miss (while cuffing the punch w/ the rear hand) the defender then counters using the same attack. Attacker repeats the counter ,counter then the two trade places (change up (repeat) ) :D
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Countering Drill #2

Postby robb buckland » Sun Sep 21, 2008 2:06 pm

Again staying on topic (the fluid posture)....replace jab with lead leg side or lead leg round/cut kick..( this is a good conditioning drill if you fire the cut kick to the lead leg. :D )

".......Worst thing you can do is look down to check your stance during any encounter ....would like my opponent to do so....."
Wouldn't that be nice. A postcard before the vacation !!! :lol: :lol: :lol:
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