Balintawak Eskrima evolved from blade-based martial art into one that uses the rattan and empty hands. Thus the principles of using the weapon are transferable to the bare hands. Out of these essential principles, the principles of attacking, slumping and body shifting are among the most basic as they are related.
In this post, we laid down the different Balintawak Eskrima principles of attacking, slumping and body shifting. These principles will help you get started with training.
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Balintawak Eskrima Principles: Attacking
An Eskrimador can employ the following weapons:
- Learn to strike with other weapons by learning how to strike with a stick. However, utilize the left hand to hit even when there's a weapon on the right. Do not be one-handed.
- It's treated as a miniature stick.
- Inverted fist, knife edge or palm heel, regular fist are all utilized. Blows can be delivered as straight punches, hooks, back-fists, at any of the 12 attack angles and to any degree.
- Forearms are weapons utilized for breaking the elbow.
- Elbows are utilized as destructive weapons.
- Knees and feet can deliver devastating kicks.
The following are the main categories of attack and counter-attack:
- Removing the force can be an element of countering.
- Off-balancing can be an introduction to the other techniques.
- Trapping/checking can be an introduction to the other techniques.
5 Basic Principles of Attack/Strike
- Hit first. You can use the strategy of waiting for an attack or you can make the first move. We prefer to strike first, before your opponent delivers his attack, although not all the time. When shielding against a knife, it's frequently safer to wait for an attack. Your first blow must always be explosively fast, and utilize a power blow after your opponent is struck once and hurt/distracted. Strive for a “non-blockable” deliver a fast hit, at the proper distance (hand or stick).
- Hit low and high. Don't give your enemy time to regain his strength from the first surprise. Confuse him by striking high and then low, or left then right.
- You have to change to another target. If your enemy blocks your blow, shift into another attack right away with the same hand. This may be very hard to defend if performed well.
- Hit what's closest to you. For example, you can strike the lead foot or hand with the stick.
- Hit constantly. When attacking, maintain the pressure with a nonstop storm of attacks.
The major technique for evading and launching blows is termed “slumping”. It is utilized to provide power to blows and blocks and allow strikes and low blocks, to shift the body in or out of range, to reach greater reach, and to enhance steadiness.
Slump but stay in position to catch a blow or steady a slump or block and fade to prevent a rush. Utilize the slumping movement with all styles.
We prefer to mix our blocks with evasive movements in Balintawak Eskrima. This is necessary when avoiding the attacks of a powerful and fast opponent. There's no universally established name for evasion, however here are a few terms which are frequently employed.
- Ducking – a general word for dropping below a blow. It's accomplished by bending both knees then slumping ahead a bit. Duck below a blow if it's arcing and high.
- Bobbing – a term that comes from boxing. It means to duck up and down.
- Weaving – a term from boxing as well. This means to duck to the right and left in similar exchange.
Evade blows through slumping. Evasion is applied along one of the arms of a y-shaped pattern. If you avoid backward slumping or fading away, and then instantly snap back to attack, you're utilizing a movement pattern which is identical to bamboo stalks blown by the wind, also known as bambooing.
Always initially shift the head before the body if you're shifting from a high attack. If you're handling a blow from a club or stick, moving the head first is vital since it is safer and faster.
There's a basic similarity between leaning back and slumping forwards depending on the degree of twist on the feet since they're always parallel, apart from leaning back. Lean to the inside or outside for evasion. A stance that's leaning backward (back stance or cat stance) is comparable to a stance that's leaning forwards (front or forward stance), in nearly all situations.
For attack or defense in kali fighting style2, you can see this similarity when you lean to the outside in a front, then a cat stance. You can also see it when you lean away from the attack.