Warrior Athlete Philosopher

World-Class Martial Arts with Joseph Simonet and Addy Hernandez.

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The Essentials of The Supported Elbow Frame™ – Joseph Simonet

The Potential of Agility

The human potential for agility has many and varied expressions, which cluster generally into the physical, intellectual and emotional dimensions. I define agility as one’s potential to make adjustments with grace, presence and speed, according to fluctuating circumstance and changing environmental demand. As we navigate through our various life roles, one’s agility allows a continuous re-calibration to new variables that must be negotiated.
When I train a student to understand the concept of frame, taking space, transitions and fulcrums of movement in X-Dtac™, I am asking them to be intellectually agile. When that student is practicing the execution of movement, speed and force, I am asking them to be physically agile. When I am encouraging a student to tap into some deeper strata of power and aggression in order to have a lethal attitude, I am asking that student to be emotionally agile.
As a teacher, I don’t simply explain the system I built, I also challenge students to have the physical agility to carry out that system. What surprises many of my clients is that I must also have them emotionally immerse in the training as well. This emotional immersion creates a psychological state of aggression, power and awareness, which the body then actualizes. Though a student of mine may indeed possess physical abilities that are off the charts, what may hold them back is their lack of emotional immersion. However, sometimes those who are physically very gifted with agility are not particularly intellectually engaged. By explaining more detail in the system, I pull them forward cognitively, emotionally and physically. Just as when I teach heaven 6, it is slow at first but then the student performs the art faster and faster without being aware of it. When I am coaching executive leaders, they are often surprised that I require them to tap into physical agility. Contrastingly, when I am training a fighter, they are often confused that I require them to tap into intellectual agility. If a student is unable or unwilling to pursue all three levels of agility, I find my effectiveness as an instructor is diminished in kind.
Part of the protocol at Ki Fighting Concepts™ is motor skills, muscle memory and tool development based on probabilities. Two other important aspects are tapping into instinct and trusting intuition. These latter elements allow one to be more emotionally prepared for survival. Based on intuition, a student is able to trust the intellectual ability that allows self-protection. I pay attention to the peripheral subtleties in those I serve, because it is these elements that differentiate us at the highest level. A leader is poignantly aware of peripheral subtleties in himself and in others, and this propels one into the upper strata of achievement and leadership. Similarly, the best fighters are those who are emotionally immersed in their art as well as intellectually agile in their endeavors. These three pillars of humanity must be actualized in synchrony if training is to be truly meaningful. I focus on these three pillars because I see them all as essential elements of success in any endeavor. Everyone is deferentially endowed in their areas of agility–some are more physical, some are more emotional and some are more intellectual, but without strength in all areas, a person is critically lacking.
If one is to behave with intentionality, one must first be physically present, then intellectually engaged and finally the deepest level involves emotional immersion. Only when we immerse are we able to tap into our full potential and creativity.

Time Gives Back In The Form of Opportunity

By Sifu Joseph Simonet
Herodotus was the first to write of the fountain of youth in the 5th century B.C. and it has been the much sought-after object of legend and mystery ever since. As we live longer, spending proportionately more of our lives in the ‘older years’, our coveting of youth has only grown stronger. Today, products and services designed to restore youth (or the illusion thereof) unburden us of billions of dollars every year, as our continuous struggle against the onslaught of age intensifies. The promise of youth is cruelly deceptive however, and no amount of vim and vigor can release us from the burden of aging, gracefully or otherwise. Father time is indifferent to our human strivings and despite our delusions of invincibility, from the moment of conception death courts us all.
Perhaps borne of our frustrated angst, we now so applaud the young, in their beautiful becoming, that we enable them to sit back on their unrealized potential and bask in the glory of that which they could be. Unrealized potential simply means you haven’t done anything yet. So we ride this wave through our teens and 20’s, preferring the far more parsimonious and comfortable route of “the world is my oyster”. We avoid challenging ourselves to rely upon or appreciate experience, because we intrinsically lack it when we are young, and arrogance rejects reliance on external help. Since we want to be self-contained and independent in our glory, we discount experience. As we dismiss the value of experiential understanding and replace it with a worship of our “unrealized potential” in youth, are we setting ourselves up for later misery? The so-called “midlife crisis” and existential turmoil that is there to meet us on the other side of our young years could be lessened if not avoided altogether, if we challenged ourselves to take a different perspective on age. Although few people say “I can’t wait to be 60”, the truth is, the older you get, the more you can draw from the understanding unique to a matriculated timeline. Young people should not arrogantly bask in the glory of youth, and the elderly should not succumb to the depleted stance proscribed by dominant social paradigms.
Time, as much as it takes longevity from us, gives back in the form of opportunity. The accumulation of years and experiences provides one with more chances to improve, learn, grow and recalibrate to a higher plane of existence. The mind that is open to evidence of needed adjustment, seeking wisdom through missteps, gathering perspectives that are valuable and guarding against deleterious encounters with those who would compromise clarity of understanding. Mistakes are a necessary part of the learning curve, and should be embraced as the fodder for experiential perspective. Fear of death is compounded when life choices are not aligned with meaningful living. How hastily we plunge into the onslaught of illusion, ignoring the warnings against indulgence until the trap door is sealed–and how many traps are there? The worst kind of trap is the one you don’t know you are in, and there are several alignments of perception that prevent the recognition of such traps. Realigning toward positive course correction is often difficult for people of all ages, but most particularly in those who are still under the spell of youth. Inexperience, pride, and an egotistical avoidance of reality will impede the progress of the young. Sadly, petulance can infect people of all ages and too often, stubbornness is acquired in youth but grasped until old age. Those who are closed minded, inflexible and self-righteous are, in my view, captured in a black hole and escape velocity can only be achieved through critical self-assessment. Although these observations may be “obvious” to the reader, perhaps it only became so apparent when someone pointed them out. In order to work your way out of the traps that have so captured you, take stock of the things you do on a daily basis to add comfort to the ones you love. Are you immersed when listening to your loved ones reveal their most intimate vulnerabilities? Age adds urgency to the need for making needed adjustments that will propel our true life’s intentions. No matter what age you are now, see each day as an opportunity to improve, and repel the tempting lure of assured but unexamined convictions.
In his masterpiece, “The Glass Bead Game”, Herman Hesse writes:
Our days are precious but we gladly see them going
If in their place we find a thing more precious growing
A rare, exotic plant, our gardener’s heart delighting;
A child whom we are teaching, a booklet we are writing.
I am now in my 60’s, just at a new starting line. As the bar continues to rise for me, I am able to hold on to the dream of tomorrow, striving each day to actualize my full potential. If we are up to the challenging and often uncomfortable position of not being an “expert”, not resting on our laurels and coasting our way through the twilight years, we may find that time to be the most compelling and fulfilling point in our life’s course. Perhaps it is that orientation that holds the fountain of youth, or even something more valuable than youth–wisdom.

Nobody Is Wrong if Everybody Is Right

In my observation, most people are two-dimensional thinkers; they get information and then they think they know it. The knowing itself becomes a truth to which one holds steadfastly. This is most glaringly obvious in people who need to be right. They encounter the world through a closed-minded lens, but really, nobody’s wrong if everybody’s right. Being “right” in a “knowing” stance leads to conviction, often without careful consideration of the information source or an embracing of the perspective of reasonability. We read books, surf the internet, overhear a conversation, listen to the radio, attend a seminar and then earnestly hold on to what we have supposedly learned. As students of the martial arts we have an instructor or grand master who imparts training, and this is experienced as ‘knowledge’ by the student. Let me give you an example of an instance where I too fell under the ‘knowing’ spell. When I was first taught heaven 6 from the Filipino martial arts world, I felt, within a few months of training, I had achieved command of this sinawali (weave or pattern). Then I attended a seminar from the legendary Dan Inosanto and realized once a student learns heaven 6, there is earth 6, and once that is learned, there is heaven and earth 6-count. Low and behold, at the seminar, Dan explained to me there are 64 variations of heaven 6 and heaven and earth. Through my own understanding of heaven 6, I discovered that with reverse grip there are 256 variations. When we add punyo, heaven 6 with multiple levels, this generates thousands of variations of heaven 6. To add insult to injury, I attended a Professor Remy Presas seminar on Modern Arnis, and realized the heaven 6 I learned is actually a variation of the brush, grab, strike empty hand version of heaven 6. Once again, as my experiential understanding expanded on heaven 6, I realized then this can be done with a knife, standard grip or reverse grip, a stick and so on. When I first “knew” heaven 6, I had actually only scratched the surface of the discipline.
Not to discount the value of information and education, but history has taught us throughout the ages that the process of knowing is constantly in flux. So why do we hold on with white knuckle fervor to our truths, when any and all truths are transient and always evolving? Let us go back in time 100 years ago to 1915. What exactly were known “truths” of this time? Women were not allowed to vote and Jim Crow laws enforced the widespread segregation and repression of Blacks. Radio, magazines, print ads and paper publications were the only available form of media and information dissemination. In 1915, there were only a handful of vaccines and DNA was undiscovered. There were 100 million people and 2 million cars in the US. About 5% of married women worked outside of the home in 1915, compared to about 60% today. We had not seen galaxies outside of our own, plastic hadn’t been invented and the atomic nucleus hadn’t been discovered. The nature of “truth” is reflected not only in our global history but our personal timelines as well. Think about what was true for you at 5 years old. Is it true for you now? The most we can say about truth is that it is part of a constantly moving process. And for every century that has come before and every century that is to follow, truth will be constantly evolving. It must be this way, because in 100 years, all 7 billion of us will be gone, replaced with new humans forming new societies and new ideas. In fact, I propose that the real value offered by our current “truths” is in their provision of a foundation upon which we stand to reach for and understand the next truth, and the next, ad infinitum. This is applicable in any endeavor, any and all walks of life, whether you are a doctor, an engineer, a lumberjack or a mechanic. We get information and hold on to our truths, and ultimately only through experiential understanding do we gain depth. If ‘knowing’ is two dimensional (width and length on an XY axis), then experiential understanding takes us along the Z axis and represents the third dimension of thinking and processing information.
In martial arts, the only stable base is an adaptable one. In the mind, the only superior intellect is an evolving one. If one becomes consciously aware of experiential understanding, one is able to move through life with a clarity of intention. Once that process is ingrained in daily living, we embark on the fourth dimension, which is time. Clarity of intention coupled with experiential understanding begets wisdom, and in my perspective, the ultimate fighter is a wise fighter.

The 5 Most Common Mistakes In FMA Hubud

Summary/Transcription Below.
Hello, I’m Sifu Joseph Simonet, martial arts expert and founder of KI Fighting Concepts. I have about 45 years of training in martial arts. What I am going to do for you today, with Mr. Kyle, is show you hubud–what’s right about hubud and what’s wrong about hubud. Let’s get started with a few reps here. Mr. Kyle chops me right here, this is what everybody does wrong in my view. When he chops me, (1) he doesn’t have a target in mind. It’s the temple, it’s the jaw, it’s the neck, he just throws something up there without a target in mind, and that is really important.
(2) With his arm in this position, I can just jack him, even if he is being as strong as he can. Have a target in mind, and don’t hold your elbow above parallel to the ground, otherwise you can be jacked and driven back.
That is part of the hubud perspective. Hubud/Lubud means to tie and to untie. When he does it wrong, I can just jack him, trap his foot and bring him down, whatever I want to do. This is really important.
In the next piece, Mr. Kyle is putting his hand right at my elbow, which is a trapping sequence. He can move around. So he traps me, boom, trap, hit. If he held his hand closer to my wrist, I could come around and do different things from there. If he were up high toward my bicep, I could slap him in the nuts or put a thumb in his eye. (3) His hand must be right below my elbow to prevent those two eventualities.
So far, we have learned a few things. If their chopping arm is too high, you can jack them, note the foot trap. Further, I can sense his fingers are not wrapped around my arm, like pak saus. (4) If he doesn’t have his fingers wrapped and they are extended, I can just rip them from his body. When he does it incorrectly, I can also just pull him down to the ground. These are key components.
You don’t always have to be within trapping range. If he does it wrong and he pushes me away a bit, I can snap kick him and hit him or lock him up, or whatever I want. He’s resilient here, he’s flexible. He puts his hands on my forearm, and he can close his eyes. I am going to hit him and he is going to stop me with his eyes closed. I can try to punch him with my right or left arm, I try to kick him, and he stopped it. When I can feel this, it doesn’t matter. This is a sensitivity drill. When he touches me, chop, clear, with his left hand, he can feel anything I am trying to do and stop it. That is really important as well.
I just demonstrated how to do hubud correctly in my view, and now I will show how to do hubud incorrectly in my view. (5) This is what most people do, there is no adherence. I have been doing hubud since 1983 and I would like you to really listen to my perspectives and my points, and I think hubud will be a lot more effective on your end. Thank you for watching!

Forging the Way of the Blade

Addy blade 2 (2)

My martial arts training began in the early Summer of my seventeenth year. I was a bright-eyed, impressionable, high school senior, ready to conquer the world. I wanted to leave my past behind and strive full throttle into the future. Paradoxically, fate had already intervened as my past and future were on a collision course in which my reality would be forever forged.

From the beginning, training with Sifu Joseph Simonet was physically, mentally and emotionally challenging. Intuitively, he seemed to know my limitations – real or imagined. Sifu Joseph introduced me to several training methods. We boxed, grappled, weight trained, ran, hiked, and worked endless rounds of focus pad combinations. I learned aspects of Wing Chun, Silat, Kenpo, Doce Pares and Yang Style Tai Chi. Each art offered a unique and challenging expression of fighting dynamics. My passion for the martial arts was insatiable as several years of training ensued.

One day during a private lesson, Sifu Joseph handed me a training blade and asked me to show him my knife fighting skills. I assured him I didn’t know any knife fighting techniques or methods. “Actually, it’s everything you know”, he replied. “I’m sorry, I don’t understand”, I said. Unbeknownst to me, Sifu had specifically taught me techniques and methods of movements that all translated to knife application. My jurus from Silat, my Kenpo techniques, the stick drills–everything became relevant to knife fighting. My astonishment soon turned into delight, as I realized edged weapons had already been an integral part my life. A further look into my history will explain.

I was born in Mexico in 1976. I was just four years old when my mother died giving birth to my baby sister. With five very young children, my father packed up and headed north to America in search of work in the orchards of Washington State.

My father is a hard working man, proud of his craft and Mexican heritage. He grew his own vegetables and butchered livestock to feed his family. Of all the children, I was the one that did not shy from the process of butchering our animals. Very early on, I would learn the skills by watching my father kill, skin, gut and clean animals. For me, using an axe, knife and machete became a natural and necessary part of growing up. I would cut off the heads of chickens using and ax and then clean and bone them with the sharpest knife my father owned. I have cut up rabbits, pigs, turkeys, deer and even a bear. It was not unusual to see my father and me side by side, cutting down alfalfa and corn stocks with a machete. The use of edged tools has always been a part of my Mexican culture.

Growing up, I wanted to be like all the “American kids”. Being young and immature, I was sometimes embarrassed that we slaughtered our animals for food. Now, as a woman and a martial artist, I have come to appreciate my heritage with pride and renewed respect.

At age 6 or 7, I first witnessed an underground Mexican past-time – cockfighting. During harvest every Fall, my father would hire dozens of workers to pick apples. This was a time of excitement as well as long, hard hours in the orchard. At night, the men would converge to drink, play music, and gamble on cockfights. The scene of men gathered around a circle of rope yelling and cheering during these cockfights is both surreal and vivid. These vicious rituals would often end with dead or severely injured roosters.

Unfortunately, there were some men who would cheat to win at any cost. In cockfighting, the cheaters would secretly attach thin razors on the cock’s feet, which of course, would destroy their opponent, slashing them into a bloody mess. On one particular night the crowd was loud and frenzied. Apparently, two cheaters had been caught. In punishment, they were forced to arm each rooster with razors and fight. Here I was, a young girl, witnessing a vicious reality of contesting with blades. My recollection of that night ended in chaos, spurting blood and yelling men.

The next day, I asked my father about the cheaters and the fighting. “Papa, I don’t understand. Who was the winner of the fight?” In a somber voice my father replied. “Hija, in a real cockfight with blades – the winner is the second one who dies.”

Through my father and our culture’s necessity to survive, killing and cutting up animals taught me respect in the blade and a strong value for life. Through Sifu Joseph and my passion in the martial arts, I understand the lethality of blade work through osmosis and practical self-defense application. The philosophy held by these two men has merged together and has allowed me to forge my own way of the blade.

Straight Blast. What You May Not Know.

Straight Blasts:
The subject for today is the straight blast. The straight blast is utilized by Jeet Kune Do practitioners, but also, what I have trained in is Non-Classical Kung Fu, so those are called straight punches. Begin from a neutral position, you start at your sternum, thumbs are connected to your sternum. I am going to hit, drop, and then hit, and then hit. It is an elliptical motion here. It is not a circular motion that some practitioners understand. You don’t hit with any particular knuckle. This is called straight punches from Wing Chun Non-Classical Kung Fu, and it is also considered the straight blast from Jeet Kune Do practitioners. I am going to teach you the footwork, we call this a “box step”. Your hips are square and your shoulders are square, one, two, you lead with the left and follow with the right. One, two, one, two. Going backwards it is the same thing but you lead with the right, one, two, one, two. If you are going to the right, the right foot always moves first. If you are moving to the left, the left foot always moves first. If your feet are reversed, it is still the box step here, and left foot moves first going backward. As I just explained, the right foot always moves first when moving to the right, the left foot always moves first if you are moving to the left, regardless of the positioning of your stance.
We are going to incorporate the elliptical movement of the straight blast or straight punches and the box step. You start by getting the punches moving, and then take a step, take another step, multiple steps, you can back up, one, two. At a 45-degree angle, start with the straight blast, box step, one, two, one, two. Another 45-degree angle here, and it doesn’t matter which foot is forward, you can have the left or right forward as long as shoulders are square. Punch, box step, box step.
To generate more power, you need some hip and shoulder movement. For example, straight punching from here is great, but it is all upper arm. I need to incorporate hip and shoulder motion here, boom, boom, this creates a lot of power and energy. For instance, this is regular straight punching and this is more hip and shoulder generation. It’s generating more power. This is Mr. Kyle Lesmeister, he is a 2nd degree black belt and he is 21 years old this month. He has been training with us for 11 years. He weighs about 245lb, I weigh about 225lbs, just to give you an understanding of what we are doing. Mr. Kyle is going to incorporate the box step and punches, and I will stop him and move him back and forth, you will understand what we are doing.
So that is the straight blast and or straight punching properly performed. Now, I am going to film Mr. Kyle for 5 seconds. Brett will tell us when to go and when to stop after 5 seconds, and I will count Mr. Kyle’s punches. So I counted about 16, so that is 6.3 punches per second. What I often say, if someone has a problem with me, one thousand one, you have just hammered them with over 6 punches per second. Mr. Kyle is 245lbs, if you are younger, quicker and lighter, you might get up to 7 or 8 punches per second. Mr. Kyle hits with a heavy hammer.
Mr. Kyle is going to demonstrate the straight blast with the footwork solo, and you will see what we are doing. Excellent job. One considerations is, are you really driving an opponent multiple strikes cross the street or room? Not really. Mr. Kyle will go, boom, boom, boom. Power. That is all you really need, just single strikes, one at a time, power, develop power in your straight punches, these are vital. Take your time. I am putting my strength forward, I have points of strength front and back. Watch what happens when I expose my weak points, he knocks me down. There is a lot of power so break down each individual piece for power and focus.
Straight Punches With A Blade
What is interesting about the KI fighting concepts perspective, is we are going to do the straight blast or straight punch with a blade. This is really important. It doesn’t matter which grip or which hand or both. I will explain. We do the straight blast here, with an elliptical motion, power, power, moving on to multiple opponents. Straight blast, put your thumb on the top of the blade, I happen to have many blades from many systems, but this is the one I carry. Put your thumb on the blade here, boom, boom, just go and do that. Another angle, hit, hit, hit, hit. Now, it doesn’t matter which hand you have it in, it is the same thing because it is a straight blast. Or you may go reverse grip, hit, tear, hit, hit, hit, this way. Or, both grips, hit, hit, hit. Mr. Kyle will demonstrate, hard and fast. What are you going to do to fight against that? Single or reverse grip, there’s nothing you can do against it.
Multiple Opponents
There are multiple opponents, as predators run in packs sometimes. So I am punching opponent number one, pummeling and slamming, and then here comes opponent two, I swing, but it is not working very well. Watch another perspective, it is a 90-degree shift, then step and go into a foot trap. One, two, bang, you don’t swing because they can block you and you are screwed. Come straight out, and then step and shoot. I am going to teach you a perspective for multiple opponents. I am going to step ahead of Mr. Kyle, punch and punch, in my peripheral vision I can see him, so that is about a 65-degree angle, and I can’t turn around or see him in the back of me. And if he is here and I am pounding him, I can do a lot of things. So punch, punch, that is really effective, or I can go all the way back to there.
I am going to give you a sequence of perspectives I would like you to embrace. There are multiple opponents going on all the time. You need proper footwork and focus; you need to have your attention on the things that are around you. Let me show you. One, two, three, four, five, look, one, two, three, four, five, look. If Mr. Kyle is the other opponent, if I look at him, he is going to smash me, so I fill that void and then I look. That is my attention perspective. One, two, three, four, five, you can do other numbers of sets, whatever you need to do. Now you can reverse it, one, two, three, four, five, look.
Straight Punches 90-degree Angle
I am going to teach another perspective as well. One, two, three, four, five, look, one, two, three, four, five, look. Step through, step through. You are going after them. Now we will do straight blast or straight punch from Non-Classical Wing Chun with a blade. The same routine we just went through, one, two, three, four, cut, look. One, two, three, four, five, look, repeat. The 90 Degree perspective, my blade is still in my right hand, but I am going to start with the left, one, two, three, four, five. One, two, three, four, five, look. So with Mr. Kyle’s help, what we did with the straight blast and I swung my hand over here, he could just block me, but I went in with a straight line and I stepped in and moved his body. Well, I want just the opposite with a reverse grip knife. Let me explain. I am going to one, two, three, four, I am going to turn it and then I am going to twist and tear, boom, boom. Very important. So the straight blast with a blade, this is very direct, and then figure out what is going on. With a reverse grip, I want to capture and then tear, and then smash here, boom, boom, this position. And then you can go on. If he is standing there, I can just thrust this right into his neck, this would be really sweet. Or, if he has his left foot forward, and I am here and here, he is coming up, I can go right into the femoral artery and shred that, or go into the groin. There are so many things you can do from here, just ankle pick him from there and ice pick him. There are so many variables you can do with a straight blast with a blade.
One last perspective on the straight blast or Wing Chun straight punches. If you want to piss them, off hit them in the nose. If you want to knock them out, hit them in the jaw. If you want to kill them, hit them in the throat. So, if I am pounding this guy and he is a tough wrestler or an MMA guy, I am going to turn these straight punches into pak saus and palm strikes and then I can just knee him. Bang, bang, knee him here, whatever you want to do. That is an added tidbit, because you don’t want to break your hands. If you hit him in the nose, cheek, sternum or throat you are not going to break your hands, but if he is shooting down here, you don’t want to hit him on the top of the head with your knuckles, you want to use a pak sau or palm strikes and just pop him and go into it that way.

Mine the Moment

sifu snow
Youth is not wasted on the young. Time, like anything, can only be wasted by the wasteful. The years we have left to live is of little import when it is squandered through misaligned living. Those who would wish for more time should, instead of wringing their hands in anxiety or clenched frustration, devote this effort toward achieving presence in the moment. When we dwell in the past, fixate on the future, or otherwise give attention and energy toward things that are not nurturing, the living part of life is stripped from us. Although some greet advancing years with a sense of betrayed indignation, I believe what one gets out of life is not measured in quantity of time, but rather in quality. When I was living on Vashon island during my 30’s, I woke up one morning and ventured out to the rocky beach just yards from our home. The dawn’s stillness was broken only by the call of birds and the gentle lapping of the tide. Out in the shallows, a heron spears a rockfish, and as it raised its prize into the air, an eagle swoops down and snatches the fish with the agility of an acrobat. I was in awe of all that was around me. The smells of the beach and the cool foggy air, the movement of the predators in my midst, the sounds of their cries and the world around. There was so much to this moment that I was almost overwhelmed. If one is paying enough attention and truly cherishes the value of a moment, a lifetime of fulfillment can be taken in every day. It was then that I realized, if I had just one calendar year on this island, living this lifestyle, with the beauty and passion that greeted me every day, I could be satisfied with just one year of life. To need more belies an insatiability that is only pursuant to numb oblivion. How many of us wish for more years and yet the years we have are spent in numb complacent comfort? My saying this does certainly not imply that I have never succumbed to the lure of inattentiveness, but those points where I am truly alive and engaged remind me of how much can be mined from each moment. I challenge myself, and challenge you dear reader, to consider this perspective as a cornerstone to intentional living. What I and all of us need is not more longevity, but more intentionality. If you don’t find yourself passionately and emotionally immersed in each day, you are not truly paying attention. Whatever brings you to tears of sadness, cries of joy, explosive movement, intellectual epiphanies, fits of rage, frustrated angst, humble awe and electrified domination is what makes you alive–not time. Capture the moment, mine it for all it offers, embark upon each day with curious expectation, and no longer bemoan your finite existence.

Anti-Grappling with Supported Wing-Chun

In my opinion, a Supported Bong Sau, of which I personally have trained 1000’s of times, is a primary tool in my arsenal. It lives in the wooden dummy form I developed and call the Slam Set. I literally slam my forearms against the oak arms of the Mook Jong (wooden dummy). At this point in my Dummy development, my forearms are impervious to pain. This is important as one is capable of causing destruction with a concussive attitude possibly breaking bones, perhaps a jaw, skull, collar bone or indeed soft tissue. The Supported Bong Sau is also an anti- grappling deterrent. The SBS could indeed stop a punch, break a collar bone or potentially stop a shooting grappler in their tracks.
Alright, from here we are going to go into our bong lop backhand. In the original DVD, we went bong, lop sau, backhand, and hit. That’s OK, what we are going to do now is a lot better. From now on, instead of bonging here, coming up, this line, this is more for Chi Sau, in my opinion. For punching, we are doing more of this, this hooks around the Chi Sau, it gives you more sensitivity. Let me show you with Josh, right from here, when he comes up and turns it over, he’s against my hand, or if we reverse it, when I come up for a bong, I can feel more and have more control here. So that hooks him in, if I’m here, he can slide around and have a little more mobility with his left hand, so I’m locking it in. So in my opinion, a lot of the bong saus, for punching, people are doing it like this. But if I do that, he gives me a right punch and he smashes my fingers, I’m screwed. So from this position, I’m jamming into it and I am supporting the bong here, this is my center, this is my structure. We also do it with a blade, we do it with a knife, if you notice in The Club Set and The Blade Set, check out those DVDs. But from here, I’m driving forward, I like the stance, it’s a little more appropriate for function than I am showing with the dummy, but I am going to explain all that. Now, traditionally, we can bong, lop, back hand. As Josh gives me a right punch here, I bong, lop, back hand, and I can do all kinds of stuff from here, I look really creative and good. But there’s just a few problems with that. One is that if he punches me and I am here, and I go in to bong, look at my feet. I have a weak point where Josh’s toe is, and another one right behind me. So it is nice to be able to get off center and curl my hand, and do the Wing Chung stuff, however, once I do that and go to bong, and right in this position he attacks and knocks me right off of my center. Only that wouldn’t be a push to my chest it would be a hit to the throat, a gauge to the eyes, or a hit to the chin, so I’m screwed. Plus, he has completely disrupted my base. So when he punches and I am here, I am extremely vulnerable at that point. Also, the other thing is bong, lop, back hand, it looks really good in the gymnasium, he punches, bong, lop, back hand, I’m really good. One little problem. He retracts his hand after the punch and it’s no longer there, so it’s bullshit. So unless you are extremely talented at a world-class level, which not many people are, I now have to close the gap. So instead of me getting off line, doing this little curl thing, back here with a woo hand, this woo hand is not attached, he punches me right hand, then left, you can do that and it looks really good as long as it is slow and I know it is coming. But the fact of the matter is, he punches, from here, I don’t know what he is going to do, he could be doing an uppercut from there and I’m just screwed. I don’t like that vulnerability, and a lot of times, martial arts systems will fight each other relative to the principles and rules of that system, thus you can do exercises like this and somebody can counter, and it is all very synchronized, but if somebody is going to rip your fucking face off, I don’t buy it. So, what we are going to do then is jam in from here, I’m coming forward with this whole structure, we do it grabbing the left arm as well, but for now, this hand is up and in my center. So I am not going to bong him and find him, I’m going to where I know that punch is going to be. It’s going to be at the end of that strike just for a microsecond, but it’s going to come back to home. As he punches me, I am jamming into him here, and now I’ve got control. Now we can shear, now we can do some of our stuff that we have done in our prior work. Supported bong, boom, I am coming right into him, it’s like I am attacking. And then of course you can do whatever you want from there and you don’t have to be stuck with a bong, lop, back hand.
Supported bong, right from here, against your dummy, as we showed, in my opinion, it is much more effective for a punching attack. Now, this is a counter-grappling move, this is big on everybody’s mind right now and is probably never going to go away. This is an exceptional anti-grappling technique, and I wish I could show it to you full-speed, but I don’t want to severely injure my partner. If you at home don’t believe me, learn how I do it and go ahead and try it on one another and have fun performing it on Jackass Part V. A lot of times we step to the side, and we’ve said that is inappropriate with the weak points. We are stepping forward, but to me, the stepping forward means the power is coming with my lead foot, the angulation of my feet, my hips, my leg is bent and driving with this structure, with the concussive attitude that we have talked about throughout this DVD. It’s the feet coming in and driving, and hitting and timing, hitting on impact, with my feet and my body, listen to the sound of my shoes as that is coming in. Same thing, boom, I can sit coming back if they are shooting. As we have already said, if he gives me a right straight punch, I can drive straight in. What we didn’t say is, if he gives me a wide hook, I can just come inside the center of that. That is another application of this. But for right now, it is the counter-grappling. So from here, if Aaron were to come straight at me with his head right down the center, I’m not going to change, because if you have to change and adjust in a critical situation, you are going to need to be really lucky I think. So what I am doing is one size fits all, I am driving right into my center, regardless if their head is coming in to center, left or right of my body. If Aaron comes at me straight, boom, I am jamming right into his head, and believe me that is going to rock him. And from there, there are so many things we can do, it’s ridiculous where we can go. But I’m telling you, as you are jamming that right into their head, and because of the dummy work, we can do that all day long against oak arms, it’s going to hurt your head more than it hurts me. It jams the neck, it compresses the vertebrae, so be careful. If Aaron comes at me with his head to his left, notice how that fits right in, the neck, the collar bone, even if his head is up and to the left, I am jamming right into that critical area and look at where I am off of that line, look where I can go with that line. I can do whatever I want, I can pull him down, and so on. So when he comes at me, I am jamming right into there, that’s what I am going to do. If his head is straight-on, that is what I am doing, and if he is turned, it fits right into that. Now if his head comes in to his right, I’m not really changing, I am jamming right into that, now he is eating the forearm and his temple as well in that line. Around this way, here, you can see what I am doing on that line. Also, one key piece about driving back, again, off my center, with this powerful base. Remember, they are shooting in, expecting to gobble me up and take me back, or they are expecting me to sprawl and just kind of land on their back and move around, that is part of the physical vernacular of wrestling and so on, but we’re not doing that. And I’m not foolish enough to believe they are not going to charge me high, because it would work there right into their throat, I don’t care. And I’m not saying this is going to stop them or that this is some kind of panacea, but I’m telling you that this is extremely effective and it creates a window of opportunity, a garage door of opportunity, for you to fuck them up after this because you’re going to rattle them. Now, not many people can take that hit to the collar bone or neck as we showed before. We are here, from the top of the body down to about the knees, and that is where my prowess ends because at that point, they are going for an ankle pick and are going to be a lot lower, so in that case I would sprawl, my feet would go back, and I would jam this into them.
Our supported bong against a grappler, hit them high, medium, or drop low. I go right to center, this is the strength of my base, I am moving forward in my attitude off of that. The grappler is coming in, they are usually tough, you need everything you’ve got to be able to diffuse their attack. A regular sprawl using the mat, I’m coming down here. Notice my hands, even this, when I sprawl, I’m going to come in with my elbows into their back. You can even do a supported elbow into their back. What I’m going to do is show it here with the supported bong. Slowly, I’m here, they are coming into me fighting, bang, that is what I am doing coming into them. I smash, with all my weight on their neck. Remember, they are moving in, I smash right into them and then come up with my elbow and proceed from there.

Argue with a Blade and WIN

I created, designed and physically manifested the Argument of Movement (A of M) on Film with the publishing company Paladin Press in 2007. Utilizing my 35 plus years of martial arts training at the time, my intention was to build a two person set that would teach a practitioner to flow and feel their way in and out of fighting ranges, joint locks, attacks and counters in a fluid non-stop progression. Within the A of M one can develop multiple variations albeit take your opponent to the ground, kick him, choke him out, straight blast him etc. etc.

The next level of A of M is Point Counter Point (PCP). Point Counter Point offers a plethora of options with a Blade. Multiple grip changes, severing tendons, heightened awareness, cutting throats, slashing arteries, joint locks with blades etc. This is an intense, brutal, and potentially a Lethal Scenario when confronted with a combatant intent on killing you. I believe, one must incorporate a Relentless Resolve with Surgical Precision with intention to kill or be killed. Whether they are armed or not, they have decided you must die. Use all means at your disposal to extinguish his Life Force.

For more information on the Argument of Movement Series Check out this link:http://kifightingconcepts.com/online-store_307-p.html

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