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Deceiving is tricking your opponent into action or reaction by making them think you are something you aren’t, such as injured or afraid, or creating an illusion of an attack.

During combat, opponents react to input from the five senses: seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, and pain, and possibility from the sixth sense of intuition. The better fighter is the one who quickest and best responds to input from the opponent. Reacting to a slight weight shift is faster than waiting until the leg moves to react.  However, this quick reaction may be used against a fighter by using a small weight shift to deceive the fighter into believing an attack is imminent.

Deception may also be used to make your opponent react in a specific way so you may counterattack, or it may be used to slow your opponent's reaction to allowing you to score with your attack.

Some types of deception are as follows:


A fake is a movement toward your opponent that causes the opponent to react as though you were initiating an attack. It is a simulated attack that opens the opponent's guard as he or she reacts to the attack. To slow an opponent's reaction time, you may repeatedly use an ineffective technique to desensitize the opponent's reaction to it and then use it again in an effective attack. For example, fake a weak jab a few times and fire a powerful cross.


A feint is a movement, facial expression, or words that give gives the opponent a false sense of security. This type of deception is a lot in street situations. Gestures may include looking or turning away from your opponent, cowering, acting scared, acting sick, pretending to be frail, or saying. "I'm leaving." Then, immediately after the gesture, you fiercely attack.

In magic's "Theory of False Solutions," the spectator is directed from one solution to another. When the spectator thinks he or she has the solution, the magician proves it wrong. By proving all the solutions wrong, the audience is then left with no logical answer. When sparring, when the opponent thinks he or she has figured out your attack sequence, change the sequence a little. Then, when the opponent thinks he or she has figured out your new attack sequence, change the sequence a little. Etc. After a few cycles of this, the opponent will lose confidence in his or her ability to figure you out.


A change in rhythm can be used to delay or disrupt your opponent’s reaction time. You first establish a certain rhythm, so the opponent is used to it and then you suddenly change it. It may be as simple as moving rather slowly and defensively for a while, and then suddenly attacking with a flurry of techniques. For example, use a jab-jab-cross for as few times, then use a jab-jab-hesitation-then the cross.


  • Simulation. Simulation is a positive act that provides a false picture. Simulation is a way of making something look as if it were real, such as acting as if you have an injured right shin to draw an attack to it. People see what they expect to see. If you behave as if you have a friend in the bushes or you have a gun or a knife, the attacker will think it is true. If you are attacked and you defend as if you have a knife in your hand, your opponent will believe you have a knife and focus on the knife hand, allowing you to take him or her out with the other hand.
  • Dissimulation. Dissimulation is a negative act that hides the true picture. Dissimulation is the concealing of something real, such as acting as if you have an injured left shin to keep the opponent from striking your injured right shin. 


These are movements that disguise your range of motion. For example, you might convince your opponent that you have a certain reach with a specific kick by stopping it short a few times.; then you attack with full extension of the kick.


A ruse is a false action to diverts attention from the real action. For example, having a beautiful friend in the stands flirt with your opponent just before and during a match, or pretending to be left-handed when you are actually right-handed or ambidextrous.

You cannot make people not think about something; you can only make them think about something. For example, you can make people think about the Lone Ranger by playing the William Tell Overture, but you can’t make them not think about the Lone Ranger when the William Tell Overture is played.

If confronted by two attackers, you say, "Do not look at me" to the closest attacker, the person will have the urge to look at you. However, if you say, "Do not look at me" to the other attacker, the closest attacker will probably not watch you and may direct his or her attention toward the other attacker, giving you the split-second edge you need to take out the closest attacker.


A maneuver is a carefully planned and skillfully executed course of action that has no apparent offensive or defensive purpose. For example, making movements that keep you in front of the referee and your opponent’s back toward the referee, or, if confronted on the street, slowly moving until a wall is behind you so you can’t be attacked from behind.


A diversion is anything that diverts attention from an attack. Filipino knife fighters considered the "live" hand to be the deadliest hand. Since your opponent is watching the knife and, not your empty hand, the empty hand is considered "live" and may be used for all types of attacks while the opponent is transfixed on the blade. A knife fighter may use a bright shiny knife in the leading hand to draw attention while having a black knife in the trailing hand that will deal the deathblow.

If a magician makes a coin vanish, the audience will consider it a challenge and try to figure out where it went and how it was done. However, if the magician vanishes the coin and then makes it reappear somewhere else, then the audience is satisfied and entertained and not be concerned about where the coin was when it disappeared. If you score on an opponent with a technique, the opponent will be wary of you using the technique again. If you have a favorite technique that scores, immediately follow it with one or more techniques that may or may not score but may divert the opponent’s attention away from the primary technique.

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