Filipino Martial Arts (Eskrima, Kali) or Filipino Arnis is a very effective, battle-tested, weapons-based martial art system. In this art, the greater part of your training will involve weapons like the knife, stick, and empty-handed (no weapon vs. weapon).
Training intensifies the awareness of the student of their surroundings and educates them that their environment can become tools of combat.
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Also, this martial art will boost your empty hand skills by powering up attributes such as awareness, perception, and coordination. In this system, one of the primary training goals is to provide you with the ability to select everyday items and utilize them to your advantage.
The daily items like an umbrella, car keys, a chair you are sitting on, or the jacket you are wearing, become appropriate means of defending yourself in the hands of a martial arts student. There’s no replacement for the confidence and assurance that comes from realizing you can deal with whatever may occur.
Anderson Martial Arts have an interesting fact to share regarding the importance of learning weapon-based martial arts for self-defence:
76 % of altercations involve weapons of some sort. These are FBI, DEA and police department statistics. In other words when a fight begins, the first visceral response someone has is to reach around them and grab something. This something can be a tire iron, a crowbar, a pocket knife a mag lite, a broken bottle, a pool cue etc… etc..
You must know how to defend against a weapon. You must also know how to pick up an ‘equalizier’ (weapon) to level the playing field between yourself and a much larger, stronger, more aggressive opponent.
Anderson Martial Martial Arts are right to assert that the weapon is an equalizer when it comes to self-defence. When you have an opponent who is bigger than you, then you have to rely more on techniques and strategy. If there is an object that you can use as a potential to defend against your potential assailant – a pen, stick, cloth, etc., then you must use that object.
But potential weapons would be useless if you are not skilled with the weapon. You might as well just throw the stick to your opponent if you can't use it properly. But if you are adept with the weapon, then any potential weapon can work to your advantage.
And even if you can't find any potential weapon around, you can still use your bare hands. Your bare hands could be just as deadly as the weapon because the weapon is only the extension of the arm and the fighting principles of the weapon can be transferred to the bare hands.
What you will learn from Filipino Arnis classes
Complete beginners and first-time learners are welcome to the classes, with the exception of advanced classes. Every new student will be greeted and will be aided by expert instructors and advanced students.
In this art, the majority of your training will entail weapons such as the knife, stick, and staff. Also, we teach different empty hand techniques that are taken from the practical and dynamic martial art such as Panantukan or Filipino Boxing. The methods of training of FMA will boost your empty hand abilities by supercharging attributes such as awareness, perception, reflexes, and coordination.
As previously mentioned, common, daily props like car keys, pens, an umbrella and the jacket you are wearing are all useful self-defence tools in the hands of a skilled and expert FMA practitioner. Online martial arts training will teach you how to use everything and anything to your advantage if a dangerous situation ever comes. Knowing you can deal with whatever may occur gives you so much confidence.
The use of right and left-hand techniques develop coordination. Techniques and drills taught in a smooth, non-restrictive way enable students to develop and enhance their natural points and boost their awareness, speed, sense of timing, confidence, agility, and balance.
And while Escrima is known for being a weapon-based self-defence system, it maintains the principle that the weapon is only the extension of the arm and that one can defend oneself just as effectively with the bare hands.
Functional Self Defense has this to say about the unarmed applications of Eskrima:
Kali and Eskrima are known as weapon based systems, but they do have empty hand techniques, many of which are derived from the use of weapons… That focus can be good, and it is often very important. Against a knife attack, for example, it makes sense to concentrate almost entirely on avoiding or gaining control of the attacker's weapon bearing limb.
To concur with Functional Self Defense, Filipino Martial Arts teaches different empty hand techniques that are derived from this practical and dynamic art. FMA’s training methods will strengthen the awareness of the student of his or her surrounding area. Intended for “mass attack” and single opponent matches, this martial art is a crucial part of any self-defence curriculum.
Moreover, it has been widely utilized in numerous popular action films such as:
• Mission Impossible 4 (Tom Cruise)
• The Bourne Identity, Supremacy, and Ultimatum (Matt Damon)
• The Book of Eli (Denzel Washington)
• Resident Evil (Milla Jovovich)
• Star Wars (Episodes I, II, and III)
• Spartacus (Showtime Series)
The primary reason this martial art was utilized in the films above is that it works. It does not only look great on camera, but it is efficient and battle-tested in actually dangerous situations. Keys, pens, books, and other daily common objects can become extremely dangerous weapons when used by a trained Kali student.
Kali fighting is a martial art of the Filipinos and has numerous different arts and forms. Our school instructs the Inosanto-Lacoste method – a combination of 26 various styles of Kali. The method and form itself were created by Dan Inosanto himself.
More Details about Filipino Arnis and its Lineage
The highly comprehensive, refined, and sophisticated martial art system from the Philippines is entirely weapons-based, yet eventually an empty-hand system.
Filipino Martial Art masters like Dan Inosanto has established a program that shows the students to the 12 primary areas: single stick, double stick, double dagger, stick and dagger, Panatukan, Sikaran (Filipino kicking methods) and Silat.
Functional Kali and Eskrima – you can apply this in combat
If you wish to learn to utilize and protect yourself against weapons, it is difficult to beat Filipino arnis (kali, eskrima). Unlike the majority of styles, almost all Filipino martial arts put the weapons training first. While various FMAs specialize in multiple weapons, loads of them entail training with sharp and blunt weapons of different lengths, from sticks to knives and swords.
Aside from these new weapons being available today, the skill in utilizing those items transfers extremely well to daily objects as well, and the empty hand technique can be incredibly useful.
Filipino Martial Arts are so effective that HowToPlay.com ranked it #5 Most Effective Martial Arts for Self-Defense on the Street. The site has this to say:
These arts have originated from the very wide scope of fighting traditions practiced by traders traveling through the Philippines, as the locals always kept an open mind to effective ways of fighting. The resulting art focused on stick and knife fighting.
Although Filipino Martial Arts (FMA) has a tight learning curve, especially regarding the sticks, it's definitely one of the most potent arts I have ever practiced. The knife fighting is ever developing since new ways to cut and defend with a knife are constantly incorporated into the syllabus. They even have legal live knife fights to the death in the Philippines.
FMA's hand-to-hand fighting follows the principle that the same stick techniques can be applied without the stick since the stick is only an extension of the body. Although the resulting techniques are not too bad, I have seen better.
The main focus of this art is the sticks and knives, and since a person can find some form of a stick or carry a knife around almost anywhere, this martial art is suited for self-defense on the street.
Unique, Functional Skills You Can Learn and Apply
Fighting with and defending against weapons is mostly different from fighting unprotected. An individual can block a kick or a punch with their arm as a cover or shield. The same can’t certainly be done with a knife attack and would be foolish against a stick as well.
Thus, evading danger with footwork is of prime importance. Since FMA focus on armed combat, the footwork in many kali and eskrima systems is dynamic, unique, and exceptionally effective.
Weapons establish the prospect for angles and attack methods that are rare in unarmed combat. However, “rare” does not mean it’s not effective. The unarmed methods in numerous FMAs come straight from armed methods, causing functional and unforeseen applications. Training the inimitable weapon techniques and footwork of the FMA will put another dimension into your skills.
How Filipino Arnis Training is Done
Like all functional training in the martial arts, Filipino Arnis training should take in practice against completely resisting, difficult opponents that fight back. This is sadly lacking in numerous FMA schools. Since actual stick and sword fighting is sporadic today, the majority of practitioners do not require their techniques to function.
Due to this missing need integrated with joint training, numerous ineffective methods and drills are common in Eskrima and Filipino Arnis.
Eskrima a practical art of self-defence that is so effective that you only require an hour weekly to be able to protect yourself should bad things happen. Starting with weapons training and closing with empty-hands training, it is the ideal self-defence art for the streets.