Students>First classes>Techniques

↩ Back



This is your first training class. In this class, you will learn some basic skills and how to use some training equipment.


The body must have something to push against so the power it generates may be transferred to the target. This means it must have a firm, stable base. This base is created by using proper stances.

Some of the basic stance used ae:

  • Resting stances. When told to rest, use a standing, kneeling, or sitting resting stance, depending on the command given or the circumstances.
  • Standing. Stand relaxed with arms hanging naturally. To not lean on anything, sit on anything, fold arms, or rest hands on hips. Relax, but stay alert.
  • Kneeling. Kneel on knees, extend feet behind you, cross feet, sit erect atop the feet, and place palms on thighs with fingers pointed inward.
  • Sitting. Sit with legs crossed with feet close to the body and drape arms over legs. Do not extend legs or lean on elbows.
When on the floor, either kneeling or sitting, be relaxed, but also alert and ready for action. For instance, if watching a sparring match and a person falls toward you, you must be ready to either instantly move out of the way, protect yourself, or catch or protect the falling person.
  • Attention stance. The attention stance is an erect formal stance used to demonstrate intense alertness and respect. It is usually quickly followed by another command. It precedes the formal bow.
  • Face forward with head and body erect, with feet side-by-side with heels and toes touching (variation is a "V Stance" with heels touching but with toes angled 45 degrees to the sides).
  • Extend arms and hands straight down the side of the body, with fingers extended downward with palms against legs (variations are with hands in tight fists with palms toward the body or facing backward).
  • Bow. The bow is used as a greeting and a sign of respect.
  • From attention stance, bend upper body forward approximately 30 degrees with head and eyes lowered, and then return to the upright position.
  • Keep head and eyes lowered as a sign of respect; it is considered rude not to do so.
  • Ready stance. The ready stance is used to wait in a semi-relaxed state, while also staying alert and ready for the next command or action.
  • Stand at attention, facing forward, with body and head erect. Step left foot outward to the left side. Position feet parallel to each other about a shoulder-width apart, toes pointed forward, knees slightly bent.
  • Hold arms in front of the body with hands in tight fists, about one inch apart, about one inch from the belt knot, with knuckles facing outward, with arms forming a circular shape.
  • Stand relaxed, but alert and ready for action.
  • Sitting stance. Typically, the sitting stance is the first fighting stance taught to students. It is commonly known as a "horseback stance," but it is also known as a "straddle-leg stance" or a "riding stance." It is used to fight an opponent who approaches from the side. The stance is strong toward the sides, but weak toward the front or back. In training, it is usually while facing the target, even though this is a dangerous way to use the stance in a fight. The stance presents few targets to the opponent but limits effective weapons to mostly the lead hand and foot. However, if used properly, it may be an effective fighting stance. World champion Bill Wallace used it effectively during his tournament fighting years.

    When the left leg faces the target, the stance is called a “left sitting stance.” When the right leg faces the target, it is called a “right sitting stance.”
  • Stand in a ready stance. Step left foot outward toward the left side and position the feet 1 ½ shoulder widths apart, keeping them parallel and pointing forward. Bend both knees and "sit" weight down between feet. Grip the floor with toes and outer edges of feet. Push outward on the knees (outer tension). Keep the body erect. 
  • The stance is like that used while riding a horse with the feet in the stirrups. The Center of mass is kept centered between feet. Weight distribution will be about 50 percent on each foot.
  • Hold both fists high with palms facing the face. Hold forearms vertical with elbows pulled together as much as possible to protect the midsection.
  • Fighting stance. When used as a fighting stance, the entire stance is rotated 90 degrees so one side is pointed toward the opponent. Shoulders and hips will face toward the side, with the upper body slightly turned toward the opponent.
  • To move forward, slide the front foot forward and then slide the rear foot forward into a sitting stance.
  • To move backward, slide the rear foot backward and then slide the front foot backward into a sitting stance.
  • To move toward sides, slide the rear foot toward the side and then slide the front foot toward the same side into a sitting stance.
  • Movements may be performed in a hopping motion.

Hand attacks

Hands attacks and arm blocks are taught using a full-chambering motion. This helps train the body to make the motions, builds strength, and looks good in patterns. As the techniques are perfected, the chambering is minimized.
  • Clenched fist. The clenched fist is the classic fist shape. It is the most commonly used hand weapon.
  • Hold arms straight out in front of the body with hands held flat (palms down), with fingers held straight and together, with the thumb sticking out.
  • Starting with little fingers, tightly roll all fingers inward until they are tightly curled.
  • Fold thumb firmly down under first and second fingers and tighten fists by squeezing all fingers and thumbs inward and by squeezing thumb/index fingers and little fingers horizontally toward each other.
  • Keep fists in straight lines with forearms with wrists locked.
  • Tighten fists, wrists, and forearms until they become an integral unit. Individually, the fingers and wrist cannot withstand much force, but as a part of a solid integral unit, they may withstand tremendous forces without injury.
  • Keep thumbs tightly curled so they do not snag on something while punching and do not give the opponent something to grab.
  • Fore fist punching. Fore fist punching is a punching drill used to learn the push-pull punching motion. Punches are aimed at the chin, nose, temple, jaw hinge, solar plexus, lower ribs, base of the skull, or the kidneys. Other areas are too protected, such as the skull that has thick bones, the mouth that has teeth, the chest that has thick ribs, the abdomen that has thick muscle or fat, and the back that has thick bones and muscles. A direct blow over the heart can be deadly, but only if it strikes between heartbeats.

  • Stand in a forward-facing sitting stance.
  • Extend both arms outward in front of the body and clench the fists.
  • Tighten fist, wrist, and forearm until they become an integral unit but keep upper arm and shoulder relaxed so arm may move quickly.
  • Pull one fist back to its corresponding hip while rotating it to a thumb upward position. Keep your wrist straight.
  • Lower and center the outstretched arm until the fist is pointed at a solar plexus target on an imaginary opponent of your same height standing in front of you.
  • The point of impact of your fist will be your first two knuckles in front of the fist.
  • Punching motion:
  • As you begin the punch, the extended fist will pull back to its hip, rotating to a thumb upward position on the hip 
  • Simultaneously, the fist on the hip will push forward to the solar plexus target, rotating to a thumb down position.
  • The two fists will pass by each other at their half way point on the way to their next position.
  • Start thinking about snapping the respective hip behind the punching fist.
  • Repeat the punching motion many times.
  • Move the hips in rhythm with the punches.
  • Keep the knees bent and do not let the body rise as you punch.

Target holding

Procedures to use when holding a target for a partner during a training drill.

Hand targets

Hard targets serve several purposes:
  • They give students something to focus upon when practicing a technique.
  • The sound they emit when struck encourages students to use quick, powerful techniques.
  • The targets may be moved around to give students a moving target to hit. The direction the surface of the target faces may be changed to permit different techniques to be used in combination.

Slap hand target

Slap hand targets are constructed of two individual hand targets connected at the handle. This means that when the target is hit properly, the two halves smack together making a loud slapping sound. When holding the target, do not hold it where it may be knocked into your face when it is struck. If your partner is much stronger than you are, you may need to hold the target with both hands.

Body shield.

Body shields are held by a partner as protection against powerful attacking techniques. They allow students to use powerful kicks or punches against a stationary or moving target. Since the target is held by other students, it may be moved around, and, when it is hit, the absorption of the force of the attack by the target material, coupled with the absorption of force by the inertia of the target holder, helps prevent injury to the attacker and the target holder. 

When holding a body shield:
  • Stand in a low front stance with the shield held in front of the torso. You may lean into your front leg and resist the attacking force, or you may relax and let your body move backward naturally with the force of the technique.
  • Hold the shield firmly by its handles. When handles are located on the sides, sometimes a kicker may slide by the shield with a kick and hit one of the hands holding the shield. To prevent this, you may hold the shield by two opposite rear corners to protect the hands.
  • Hold the shield firmly against your body so it may absorb the force of kicks. If it is held away from the body, when it is hit by a powerful kick, the shield will painfully slam back into your body.
  • Turn your face to the side during a kick. If a kick slides the shield upward, it may slam into your chin or nose.
↩ Back

No comments: