Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Our Modern Arnis Way

Our Modern Arnis Way (How we are different part 2)

Last week I wrote about how “my Modern Arnis is different than ‘Normal” Modern Arnis”.  This week I want to continue with how our empty hand, espada y daga, and knife work is different as well.

Our empty hand material comes from several different sources, built around GM Remy’s Modern Arnis.  The first noticeable difference is the basic four defensive responses, these are taken directly from the double stick responses taught in Kombatan.  This is one of the first areas in our curriculum we stress to help the student to start translating the motions between blocking and countering a swinging stick and blocking and countering a punch.  We use the teaching drills and methodology inspired by Hock Hochheim such as the Wooden Man and Statue drills along with his punching drills to add meat and muscle to the skeletal structure so to speak.  These four defensive responses are tied in not only to empty hand punches etc. etc. but also to grabs, pushes, shoves, as well as weapon attacks. 

We also use the empty hand Sinawali drills to tie together the double stick and empty hand material, but we also tweak it by inserting the four defensive responses mentioned earlier into the empty hand sinawali flow drills making a more spontaneous blocking and entering  component to the drills.  Building on a similar format as we did with the single stick; in the more advanced rank levels we combine various empty hand flow drills i.e. Hubud, Empty Hand Sinawali, Empty Hand Tapi flowing in between the different patterns and using them to teach blocking, passing, locking, and striking skills.

SM Dan Anderson teaching at the 2007 DAV Summer camp
The Professor (Remy Presas) combined Small Circle Jujtisu with his Modern Arnis so he taught a lot of locking skills and drills.  Our Modern Arnis keeps that teaching alive and our locking, throwing, and off balancing skills come from the Professor along with a heavy influence of Dan Anderson’s teaching material.

SM Dan Anderson teaching off balancing skills at 2007 DAV Camp
We still teach the Modern Arnis Anyos or katas but we use them to teach application and translation of techniques instead of just for rank progression.  Here again SM Dan Anderson’s influence is found through his motion application principles, and body management principles to help us apply techniques found within the anyos.

Perhaps the two areas of the least influence of Modern Arnis that we have in our program is the espada y daga and the knife material.  Both of these bodies of material are heavily influenced by GM Ernesto Presas’s Kombatan, Hock Hochheim, Guru Inosanto and Bram Frank.  The espada y daga material is mainly from Kombatan and the espada y daga flow drills from Guru Inosanto, where as the knife material is from all four men.  In all of the camps and all of the 1 day seminars I went featuring GM Remy Presas, he covered this material only 2-3 times which is why GM Remy’s knife and espada y daga material is so sparse in our curriculum.  I reserve this material for the advanced ranks.

In a previous post I stated that we (my school and the instructors associated with Hidden Sword Martial Arts) are not part of or associated with any of the Modern Arnis governing bodies at this time.  One of the reasons this is so, is because that what I teach, how I teach, and what I believe should be taught is different because of all of my (our) influences.  It is not that my Modern Arnis is better than anyone else’s, but mine is different.

Datu Dieter teaching a spiraling take down at the 2007 International DAV Summer Camp

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