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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 4:42 pm 
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Hell, yeah!

I remember being at a Mid-Atlantic regional meeting many years ago with Bill Glasheen and possibly another student.

We were sitting at the table and some guy made a wise crack on whether I thought I could defend myself against a man...proceeding to telling me thta he thought a woman couldn't make it in the Uechi world.

Bill was sitting right across from me and jumped on that one. He will have to tell you what he said...good stuff!

So, I found the following article to be interesting and wanted to post it and get some feedback from people on this forum (http://www.martialarm.com/martial-artic ... S_MAN.html).

Regards,
Vicki


WOMAN VS MAN News Article

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

WOMAN VS MAN

Author: Robert W. Young

A popular debate focuses on whether women should practice the martial arts and, if they do, whether they have any real hope of defending themselves against a man.

This is far from a trivial discussion. If the techniques taught in martial arts classes do not function when an average woman tries to apply them on the street, that means most of the women and many of the men who are learning the martial arts for self-defense may be wasting their time.

To help readers arrive at some conclusions, Black Belt examined the issue of whether women can defend themselves with typical martial arts techniques and, if so, which techniques they can depend on in a street encounter.

For expert advice, we went to Los Angeles-based fighter Mimi Lesseos. Hers is a name you may not recognize, but after reading this article and studying the photos, we believe it is one you will not soon forget.

Lesseos started judo at age 6 and went on to Greco-Roman and pro wrestling. She competed as a professional fighter for 12 years. My first professional match was at 16, she says. Then I got into kickboxing, and Ive done some taekwondo because the last seven years of my professional fighting were in full-contact shootfighting in Japan, Peru and Europe. That was the hardest martial arts [training] I have gone through. It was full-contact, anything goes.

Lesseos, who was known as Magnificent Mimi on the pro wrestling circuit, has also trained with grappling legend Gene LeBell for the past 15 years, and with sambo and fullcontact karate expert Gokor Chivichyan for nearly as long.

She insists the following principles and techniquessimple to learn and simple to executewill help any martial artist in a street fight.

TARGETS AND WEAPONS
The most important things for a woman to remember when shes fighting against a man in a dangerous situation are to keep calm, keep cool and hit his most sensitive spots, Lesseos says. And do it direct and as hard as you can. You want to put him down with the first blow because you wont have a second chance.

The groin, eyes, nose, neck, shins and knees are among the targets most vulnerable to attack, Lesseos says. Hitting the body is not uselessif you know techniques and if you know how to punch and how to drive it through. But if you dont know the techniques and youre an average woman who doesnt have much training, you should probably go for those sensitive spots. Just hitting the body, trying to get in a shot on his side or chest or even in his face, wont be too effective.

For an average woman, punching wouldnt be the wisest idea unless you are punching in the groin or straight into the throat because men are [usually] stronger and bigger, Lesseos continues. You can also break your fingers or hurt your knuckles while you are trying to punch him, and then hes got you.

Lesseos advises women to consider striking with the palm instead of the fist. When youre hitting the nose or other areas, the palm absolutely [works], she says. If you have your fingers straight up and you hit straight into an area, its a little more effective than a punch.

ELBOWS AND KNEES
Many self-defense experts claim women should not count on striking with their elbow because it is too much of a shortrange weapon to use safely. If you try to throw a wild elbow, its not going to be effective, Lesseos says. You have to be in the right spot with the right [distance] because when you have your arm bent, you have to be very close. I dont recommend a woman on the street try to throw an elbow.

But if you are in that right position, an elbow strike can be very effective. If somebody is holding you face-to-face and your elbow is available, strike right at the nose or cheekbones, she says. Do it as hard as you can. Then you can damage his sight and sense of equilibrium.

The knee is similar in that it works best when your attacker is very close. It is a bit more effective than the elbow because the man is directly in front of you and face-to-face; hes fighting against your upper body, Lesseos says. You can strike with your knee to his chest or face, or you can bring your knee into his groin.

But can a knee strike delivered by an average woman do any real damage? God yes, she says. Absolutely. Ive been knocked out with a knee.

LOCKS AND CHOKES
There are a lot of technical holds a woman can use while grappling on the floor, Lesseos says. If a man has you down, you can go into leg locks, arm locks, head locks or front face locks. Those are extremely effective.

She advises all women to take a grappling class. I respect very much karate, kung fu and the punching and kicking arts, but when a man has you down, you cannot punch or kick effectively because all your training is standing up, she says. Grappling helps when you are down because that is the primary position they want to get into.

It usually takes six months to a year of regular grappling practice for a new student to get comfortable with the basic techniques, Lesseos says. You not only have to learn the techniques, but also go through the actions so you can feel what kind of pain you are putting the other person in, she says. Its good to have somebodyyour instructor or senseiapply the pain to you because you can squeeze somebody and put a tiny bit of pressure on, but the next inch can break his shoulder. So its good to feel how much you can take; then you know whether you can go that extra inch when youre applying a lock.

MENTAL AND PHYSICAL
The mental portion of a womans selfdefense training plays as critical a role in success on the street as the physical. When youre using these maneuvers [in a real situation], go all the way, Lesseos says. Dont just try to hurt him; try to break something.

A woman who hasnt built herself to the [strength] level of a man should strike to killor at least with the intention of severely damaging the person she is fighting, instead of just hurting him, she says. If youre going to fire a gun, fire to kill. You have to put him down so you have enough time to get up and run.

To increase your chances of success against a man, it is important to train with weights, Lesseos says. I myself have a lot of strength and can pick up a 260-pound guy even though Im 130, but I can do that because of not only weights but because of working out my legs doing grappling maneuvers which works muscles you cant work with weights, she says. If you work on weights and take a grappling class, youll have double the strength.

MASCULINE AND FEMININE Women who are training to develop their strength and martial arts techniques need not be overly concerned about losing their femininity, Lesseos says. I am the baby of five. My mom put the boys into judo and the girls into ballet. Since I was the baby, I got to do both. I kept my femininity because of the ballet, but Im still all woman.

Its very important for a woman who fights and trains to stay feminine and vulnerablebut know in her heart she can kick butt.

I want to start a new path for women to go down, she continues. In the past, many women I competed against became hard and very masculine. They wanted to prove to the men that they could be a buddy and be in with them.

They allowed their femininity to dissolve.

But I was always the one who wore dresses. A lot of the girls frowned upon that. But thats just me. To have both sidesthe masculine and the feminineis very important for women.

To get across this message to a wider audience, Lesseos has brought her fighting from the ring to the screen. She retired and started her own movie company, Stepping Out Productions.

During my fighting career, I was doing movies, but they were exploitative, Lesseos says. They couldnt see beyond my fighting to hire me as a true actress with a big role. I knew I was much better than that, that I could do any part and be a Demi Moore who could kick butt.

It took three years for Lesseos to write the script for her first movie, Pushed to the Limit. It was based on a true story about me and how I got into wrestling and full contact, she says. Of course I had to movie-ize it a bit.

To finance the production, Lesseos was forced to sell her house. And during filming, she ran out of money and had to to Japan to compete. I took a competition with Frontier Martial Arts Wrestling and won, she says. That was the last fight I did. ...

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 11:36 pm 
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the problem i see is that most teachers give out information rather then actually teach. this leaves the student to fend for themselves when it comes to aplication. i find very few teachers are in tune with what a women needs to protect herself. they just regurgitate the information they remember from their teachers. most times the information is wrong reguardless of whether your a man or women. this is why i like Van's forum so much. lots of teachers show how to punch and kick as if the entire class was full of professional male kick boxers. ( big punches to the head and body hooks)
i feel the real issue here is not a male / female problem but an overall issue of content Vs. application. physicaly there really no difference between a 120 pound female fighting 155 pound me ...or, 150 pound me, fighting a 250 pound mean aggressive bad guy. it's all kinda realitive. attitude is paramount.

Question,, who is truly responsible for your safety?
Are you going to pass that responsibilty to some guy to spoon feed you information in hopes that he knows what he is talking about?
Is this teacher going to be there when you really need protection?
i say take the responsiblity for yourself, learn all you can. use your god given mind to figure out what you REALLY need to protect yourself without building a false sense of security.
practice practice practice and test yourself and your ideas with others.
take the responsibility , build your art "YOUR ART" , know with out a doubt that it is what you need. MAKE IT YOURS.... OWN IT.

:)

steve
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 5:04 am 
“This is far from a trivial discussion. If the techniques taught in martial arts classes do not function when an average woman tries to apply them on the street, that means most of the women and many of the men who are learning the martial arts for self-defense may be wasting their time.”

And thus started my journey on the road to heresy.

Let me explain.

We go back and back and back in time………………….

I was teaching a class at a school on how to deal with roundhouse kicks.

A fellow watching at the back had rejoined Uechi after seventeen years. He had been at the original Jim Maloney dojo. His name is Rick Bottomley.

I taught the class and knew Rick was watching and knew he had trained at Jim’s original school so I wanted to know what he thought. So I asked.

He said well it was fine lots of nice jamming techniques but --- "What is the small woman over there going to do when you really throw a roundhouse kick at her?"

For a moment I pondered the question then responded: “She is going to die.” I just taught her to die. Wow.

That lead to a long conversation that martial arts done with the proper principles should be effective no matter who is apply it. Yes size and mass have an effect and anyone who tells you differently are just wrong – BUT that does not mean a small woman (or man) cannot make it work against a large attacker.

THAT IS unless you are teaching them to die.

So I reshuffled my deck and began looking at everything I taught to determine if this would work if a small woman applied it to a large man.

The next time I taught Rick B was watching again and when I finished he was shocked that my class contained so much of what he and I had talked about. I said “what do you mean didn’t you think I was listening?” Rick B replied “You are the first one who listened.’

And from that day forward my entire perspective of what I do has changed and what I seek out as principles must fit what can be done by anyone.

And to this day Rick B and I train together every Saturday morning and I continue to learn from him and him from me.

SO – the point of the story is it is not the women that are failing the martial art being taught but the martial art being taught is failing them.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 6:48 am 
these are the folks we should cater too first .

It should work for them or it isnt martial arts .

the Alpha males will do fine without training .


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 7:25 am 
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Stryke wrote:
these are the folks we should cater too first .

It should work for them or it isnt martial arts .

the Alpha males will do fine without training .


Great post.


Something, many martial artsi teachers really need to realize.

The guy 300 big guy who picks stuff up easily and moves like mohammed ali needs less attention then the awkward retard in the corner who can't walk without falling, or the 90 pound girl who's never done sports.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 12:07 pm 
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What an excellent paradigm shift, Rick. Can I come train with you?

...so how did you teach that young woman to deal with a round house kick from a big guy?

I had to deal with a guy in my Shotokan class that loves to fight, and especially loves to kick...who does construction, so is very strong. To me the hardest kick to defend against is a lightening fast front kick, you don't see coming. Yowza! I am still working on that.

My best thing is not to be there and that's hard to move that quickly.

Please share some of what you teach, Rick.

Most interesting perspective!

Regards,
Vicki

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 Post subject: Now YER Makin' sense !!!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 6:14 pm 
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"...............I feel the real issue here is not a male / female problem but an overall issue of content Vs. application. physicaly there really no difference between a 120 pound female fighting 155 pound me ...or, 150 pound me, fighting a 250 pound mean aggressive bad guy. it's all kinda realitive. attitude is paramount........." :D

Unfortunately it is left up to the student to diseminate the "good oil "from the "gym science" when it comes to what works and what doesnt in the "REAL WORLD". :cry:

".....the 300 lb big guy who picks stuff up easily and moves like Mohammed Ali needs less attention then the awkward retard in the corner who can't walk without falling, or the 90 pound ....(weakling) who's never done sports. "

You have described me to a T (the awkward retard in the corner )....

Its our responsibility to teach people how to design personalized self defense tactics. So our students dont fall through the preverbial "self defense cracks"

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 8:46 pm 
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First, Vicki, Thanks for this post (and the interesting article!), as that was the next topic I wanted to cover...you beat me to it...GOOD JOB!

Second, I think everyone has already done a great job of addressing the issue of it not being just a matter of male vs female or large vs small; it's often a matter of the focus of your training. Very good points!
hoshin wrote:
i feel the real issue here is not a male / female problem but an overall issue of content Vs. application. physicaly there really no difference between a 120 pound female fighting 155 pound me ...or, 150 pound me, fighting a 250 pound mean aggressive bad guy. it's all kinda realitive. attitude is paramount.


Rick Wilson wrote:
Yes size and mass have an effect and anyone who tells you differently are just wrong – BUT that does not mean a small woman (or man) cannot make it work against a large attacker


After all, let's not forget that most Okinawan's are MUCH smaller in stature than most Americans, and I don't believe any of us would say the masters were not capable of taking care of themselves!

So, I'd like to add another thought to this thread....that was mentioned in the article...and that's mental preparedness.

I think women should definately train in MA becuase of the many physical and mental benefits of training. Mental benefits can range from confidence to the realization that you can be feminine and strong to encouraging a simple situational awareness to mental consideration/preparedness to defend yourself or another...no deer or sheep in the headlights reaction. I really hate that so much of our population (male and female) have either a victim mentality or an obliviousness to thier surroundings that encourages predation.

I was reading elsewhere about how women can't go toe to toe with the big dogs...well, my answer to that is this:
I'd rather be a small sheepdog, than mutton stew.

Thoughts?

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 9:56 pm 
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Women can compete but they must think and train smart.

Nice to know that they style of Wing Chun was started by a woman...and look how popular it is.

More later...have to finish making dinner and then off to class (tonight I do two back to back, Uechi and then my Shotokan...will be tired, for sure).
Vicki

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 6:00 am 
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Indeed..

There shouldn't be a man's way of training and a woman's way of training.. There is a best or most efficient way to use the body and make the best of whatever situation.. If it works for a smaller person it will work for a larger person.. Not the other way around.. And of course there ain't no magic technique or method that guarantees anything.

The keys... Concept based work amid *connected* live and dynamic energy, position, timing variation in an alive manner is at the core for CQC IMO.. The concepts via, the tools, movements, structure and generation and manipulation of energy must be trained and cultivated amid these same constituent elements.. To train them without these alive and changing environmental forces is like training to swim without water.

Air work, distance work and pounding the crap out of each other doesn't cover it IMO..

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"Receive what comes, stay with what goes, upon loss of contact attack the line" – The Kuen Kuit


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 7:48 am 
Vicki:

What an excellent paradigm shift, Rick. Can I come train with you?`` -- Anytime! :D

``...so how did you teach that young woman to deal with a round house kick from a big guy?`` --- Too late to post tonight but I will this weekend.

Shana:

``it's often a matter of the focus of your training``` -- absolutely true. 8)


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 2:52 pm 
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JimHawkins wrote:
There shouldn't be a man's way of training and a woman's way of training.. There is a best or most efficient way to use the body and make the best of whatever situation{...}The keys... Concept based work amid *connected* live and dynamic energy, position, timing variation in an alive manner is at the core for CQC IMO.. The concepts via, the tools, movements, structure and generation and manipulation of energy must be trained and cultivated amid these same constituent elements.. To train them without these alive and changing environmental forces is like training to swim without water.


Excellent post Jim!

could you provide more detail on what you mean about structure/generation/manipulation of energy....are you talking simply physical positioning for maximum power or are you talking utlizing the full flow of movement (yours and thiers) or so much more than I am getting form this?

What you have said just opens up a lot of questions and excitement in my mind, and I'm just not sure where to start asking questions! :lol: 8O

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 7:14 pm 
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8O Don’t look like easy meat – All three type of attackers will be less likely to attack someone they feel will fight back .

:idea: Combat awareness – trust your gut .Your “gut” or intuition is actually emotional intelligence. :idea:

:!: Don’t fight fear – use it to your advantage. dont spend energy suppressing these feelings, it will result in “brain freeze.” Trust your feelings or emotions. :!:

Controlling Space – the most important aspect of maintaining control over your protection.....don’t allow a potential threat to get too close.

Angle to one side or the other- never backward. Move to your right, (that's his left), as it’s likely he’s right handed and you’ll be working on his weak side.

Know the specifics about fighting ranges. Remember that “combat awareness” is necessary... not “paranoid”; and distance is your friend. 8)

Pre-set Triggers – Have ready mental “decision points” on what will “trigger” an attack. Your odds of winning go up if you strike first , and preemptive attacks depend on pre-set triggers. Pre-set triggers guarantee that you’re not trying to “figure it out” in the heat of battle.
Here are some “External” triggers that should prompt action:
Shove – This requires your immediate attention. Your about to be hit... 8O

Boundary Violations – 8O “invisible lines.” like:
Stepping in too closely to you...
Jabbing you with this finger...
Grabbing your shirt...
Dropping of his chin...

Now youve got the when and why, heres the how...

Forward Blitz – a relentless attack that does'nt stop until the threat has stopped Use ALL the weapons in your arsenal(W/attitude), including hands, knees, elbows, feet, head butts... the whole tool box. :wink:

Total Commitment – To prevail in a fight ...Never launch an attack then change your mind. Continue the forward blitz until the job is done.

:idea: Leave the Area –Dont Hang around, you’ll be confronted by his buddies or angry bystanders that don’t understand what’s happening. :idea:

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 10:07 am 
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Shana Moore wrote:
could you provide more detail on what you mean about structure/generation/manipulation of energy....are you talking simply physical positioning for maximum power or are you talking utilizing the full flow of movement (yours and thiers) or so much more than I am getting form this?

What you have said just opens up a lot of questions and excitement in my mind, and I'm just not sure where to start asking questions!


It's about the interaction of you and the opponent's tools, energy and position.. For example the 'combative clash'..

The positional and energy strategy is about center space or centerline control--part of centerline theory, which very simply states that two objects cannot occupy the same space (center) at the same time. So you occupy this space to control it.. Where occupy often means generating a continuous attacking force.

The centerline, also called the mother line, is the line or area of space between you and your opponent.

This strategy seeks to control this space..

At a certain distance (close range) there is often not enough time, no matter how fast you are to go around a direct linear attack, or even evade it--all depends on distance and position..

This linear attack (a strike say) will either land, miss or be, as we say obstructed--some might say blocked..

If the "block" (not a word I like) moves the attack out of the center and off it's path then this action has also moved itself off of this path.. In so doing it has also left this line open--he has created a path of no resistance for you to now take. A good deal of training must be focused on training just this kind of reaction with live resistance.

Pressure or energy issuing is a critical part of the energy strategy, the classical example is a spring that is loaded, in this case, loaded on his resistance.. When he moves offline the "spring" simply fires to fill this space..

Another example of this forward energy component is the high pressure water hose example. This example of energy really, does several things, it takes position, it challenges his position (tools), it issues force (position) and challenges his center/balance (base)--and it does so unceasingly, without stutter or hesitation..

<Can we begin to see how the smaller person can be a quite a force here?>

The forward pressure is part of the energy issuing requirement of CMA and makes sensitivity possible in real-time as your energy and tools clash. Learning how to generate good 'loose' but substantial forward energy and <connect/disconnect> full body power in all tools and actions is critical.

Training to be sensitive means that when you are in contact and something like this happens you already know where the opening is *going to be* you feel it--and you take it.

Most of these attributes are about occupying, leaving and returning to the line, economy of motion/energy, balance control/stealing, energy issuing, and in general controlling position via energy--read attack..

The hope is to begin to level the playing field by focusing on position, timing, energy, continuity, etc, over speed, power and brute force; to train a specialized set of attributes that are uncommonly found.

On the other hand if you train to use force against force it will only work if you have more of it than your opponent, more speed, more power.. Very problematic, very time consuming, very energy depleting and very marginal.

Likewise, seeking to find the answer by adding, more speed, more power, "man I am just not fast enough..." is NOT how this stuff works--the exact opposite in fact. Less yang, more yin, less *wasted* energy, less motion, less force, less, less, less is the basis for most of these concepts.

That's really the genius of these arts.

Sadly the best way to explore these contact and connected fighting concepts is through contact energy training with good people.. And **good** training in this area is very hard to find..

HTH

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"Receive what comes, stay with what goes, upon loss of contact attack the line" – The Kuen Kuit


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 2:40 am 
Vicki:


High Round house kicks are often shown as dealt with in Uechi Ryu schools by the outward extension of the forearm to attack the incoming shin.

This is a tragically flawed technique for any individual to use against a person who knows how to kick properly.

It only works because the student kicking is kicking to the target rather than through the target.

Vicki your first thoughts of simply not being there is the best strategy there is, but as you say we are not often given that option.

The forearm movement is only a part of the appropriate action but not as an attack on the incoming leg (read incoming baseball bat), but it is appropriate when it is used as a flexible spring and as part of the entire flexible spring.

In other words you have a big bat coming in at your head. You do not want to place your forearm in front of that incoming bat (ask Frank Shamrock who broke his arms doing it to Chung Lee recently).

What you want to do is absorb the incoming force by both closing and avoiding. Moving in and away from the line of the attack.

Picture the incoming leg like a second hand on a clock.

Yes we could step back and that might be the right move but often it only leads to another kick.

Stepping inside the movement of that second hand means we cannot avoid the strike.

So we need to mitigate the damage it can do us as well as strategically place ourselves in the best position to strike.

So we are standing at the 6 on the clock. The second hand is coming at us from the 4.

We need to use foot work to step towards the centre of the clock but on the 9’s side.

This moves us in and away from the force.

At the same time we need to use the spring of our forearm position and the spring of our entire body to compress and absorb the incoming force as we move away from it.

Never challenge directly any incoming force.

Yes a person can and might get away with it but on the street if they don’t then they lose big time.

Understand this does not mean you cannot intercept a force, but it has to be done so that you do not go force directly on force.

Footwork and body spring are the first choice.

The spring that compresses also expands outward. The bound elasticity created by the absorption is an energy stored that can be released in attack.

Body flow and body spring are the second choice for when the high roundhouse kick is too fast to move with it.

If you think of body flow as canoeing down rapids, we do not have complete control of the direction we move (we go the direction the water takes us) but we can influence that direction. Body Flow is the Dragon of Uechi Ryu as I see it.

Body flow requires a loose upper body in harmony with the lower body. It requires a cross corner torso movement. Left shoulder rolls back the right hip rolls forward.

This movement is all generate through the knees.

By using this movement you can flow with an incoming blow. The goal of any avoidance of a strike however is to strike while you do it.

So if you have to take a high roundhouse kick use your forearm and body as a spring to close in BUT away from the line of attack. Do not attack the incoming leg or when facing a guy who can kick properly by going through the arm will lose. Think move and absorb, then think hit as I move and absorb.

Hard to explain I hope to have some video capability again real soon.


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