Tuesday 11 March 2014

Class notes: arms drags and clinching

Once again a session jam packed with information, repetition of previous material and of course new steps on the ladder. In addition it is late in the day when I write this and some of the learning might merge in my words when in reality it was in a different drill.

Arm drags out of the pummel to get the back.

Arm drag to double wrist lock. A new detail I picked up tonight was the 90 degree angle of your arm against his. This means going longer on your forearm as if you do go tight to the wrist the your forearms might be more parallel leading to less control, pain and effectiveness.
Secondly for me was being square. Make sure when you have leaned back with the DWL you turn your hips towards him to complete the move. Turn inside him and not around him.

One hand in the half Thai clinch and one underhook. If your elbow gets caught on his shoulder, don't fight for the full Thai clinch. Pull him in tight with the shoulder control. From here you can turn him away by controlling the head to a lovely restraint which can lead to knee strikes to the face. This control also needs you to move the hips which will ultimately move your feet. It is like a mini version of the boxing footwork whereby we move off line by pivoting away.

Arm drags to get head and arm trap.


Head and arm resisting the arm drag. Same as last week in terms of detail.

Thai clinch defence counter - reach and cross the centre to take his arm above the elbow for the head and arm control. Again this was covered last week. The extra detail this week was the escape. Martin demo'd on Big Ron who is a big and powerful unit. The key to escape is to relax and circle away from his energy and stand with a straight spine. His energy can only go in one direction so do not fight it. Even when the tension (physically) is up, don't fight it. Use, it, go around, it, let to show you the direction. how to escape - relax, to stop him getting out you must pull him in and not away. Interestingly, these concepts were some of the core ones in Systema which I studied for several years.

Sensitivity drill - the reverse chain punch, using a receiving pak sau, high on the forearm and guide along the powerline just past the chin. Ultimately going to slips but we were just at the first stages of the drill tonight. 2 attacks from this drill.

1: Follow the punch by snaking your arm along the top of his, sort of clasp the upper arm as you step in and take his back from the 3/4

2: Double lap - leave a hand there, move it forward slightly to take the double lop. Grab at the wrist and the elbow, both are natural handles. Hand at the wrist is palm down, hand at the elbow is palm up. Martin talked about tips on when and how to hold/control the arm at the elbow. if the arm is high thumb is up and as the arm lowers the hand rotates. For example, the rear hand which passes the elbow in the head and arm trap, fingers are pointing up as this is the naturally strong position for the hand to be in. You could not perform this technique with the fingers down. Get the missus to throw some slow punches your way and you will see what I mean.

3. Elbow from the outside over the incoming arm

Gloves on:
Jab and jab counter drill. Be at the end of your punches so you are fully protected. remember about the six inches. Be at a safe range when he jabs to avoid eating it and his combinations that would follow.

Jab, counter is a jab and cross, you roll. 3D movement. Struggling to feel the correct motions. My mind knows what to do but somewhere the message to the body is getting jammed...
Jab, jab and left hook counter, he covers by tightly hugging the head and responds with a hook of his own.

Even though the punches we soft fisted, it reaffirms the need for a protective shell, good head movement and footwork and keeping that chin tucked into those shoulders.
Break up the timing to stop him getting used to a rhythm or pattern of movement. This will not keep your training partner sharp. I also think the good thing about the gloves os that punches are thrown to the face as we need to practise hitting!! It was nice to get in the head again after almost a year of no sparring. There is a certain aliveness and being in the moment when sparring. I have always found it to be the highest form of being in the now. Nothing literally does not matter and in not in your head. It is just you and him. More of that please!

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