Hitting People with Sticks
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Evasions and counters

An evasion is a simple concept – just your butt out of the way.  Changing that instinctive response into an effective tactic can be equally simple and part of an excellent defense.

Last night started out with a quick yoga-themed warm-up led by Matt, then paired up and practiced basic evasions, involving simply stepping out of the way of the swing of the stick.  From there, we discussed more advanced evasions, incorporating stepping under or to the side of the swing.  When used properly, these evasions can be part of a larger plan to get inside your opponent’s defenses and strike where they aren’t expected.

For the last part of class, we combined an evasion with a follow up flurry of blows.  We practiced the first combo for a bit, involving blocking two strikes, slipping under the third with a belly strike and a strike to the neck, checking any potential backswing, then a quick 1-2-3-4 and back to guard position.  The second combo involved a similar beginning, but involved a disarm and takedown.  Excellent fun.

Things to remember:

Swing speed and angle are very important. Your opponent’s swing needs to be wide and slow enough for you to dodge under when using the advanced evasions, especially on the 1 & 2 angles.  Otherwise, you just end up walking directly into the swing and get smacked for your efforts.  Not generally considered good.

Use timing to make fuller use of the evasion. Make your counter-strike on the half beat to keep your opponent off balance.

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