Here are several clips of technical sparring Meynard just put online. Some things to notice and reflect on while viewing:
- The weapon is in constant motion so a cut can be made from any angle, at any time
- Footwork is paramount in Kali
- Angles, angles, angles.... angle of the weapon, angle of the slash/thrust, angle in conjunction with the footwork, which in turn creates new angles. I knew I should have paid attention in geometry in high school!
- Notice the focus on one of the most fundamentally difficult concepts for people to grasp... range
- Pekiti Tirsia Kali is a bladed art
Lets elaborate on that last note a bit. Pekiti Tirsia Kali (PTK) is a bladed art that relies on technical strategies and a superior understanding of angles and range. You will notice the absence of brute strength and caveman type behavior in the following clips. That is because employing such strategies will get you hacked / slashed / thrust into pieces as soon as you step into range! Here is a pic of a Ginunting, the standard weapon used in PTK:
Some Filipino martial art groups claim to gain a clearer consciousness via harder blows where their focus is on the impact aspect of FMA and use of the stick. Nothing wrong with this approach but the reader must understand the fundamental difference in what we are bringing to the table!
If those were bladed weapons how much different would those fights have been? Nothing wrong with the above training, but my point is the difference between training in an impact art as opposed to a bladed art. While PTK employs all weapons (and we train with sticks because they are cheap and easy to replace), relying on the results of blows can be quite variable.
For example take a look at modern day MMA fights. We have seen everything from nasty KO's by blows that barely hit their opponents chin (Nick Diaz), to literal beat downs where the opponent takes amazing punishment both to the body and brain to no effect (Wanderlei Silva, Pride days). But much like sinking in a choke, using a blade is technical and precise, and if it lands the damage is guaranteed! Tendons, ligaments, skin, and flesh all cut and tear the same with all of us regardless of pain tolerance or "toughness." Just like a choke, when it is sunk in, it does not matter how tough your opponent is. When the oxygen is cut off to the brain, the body goes to sleep!
Some food for though while you watch the following clips. I already have my students working on the basics of technical sparring, and hope to have them up to this level by the end of the year.
If you are interested in doing some Pekiti Tirsia Kali in the Seattle, WA. area email me at firstname.lastname@example.org