Martial Arts 12/17/2019: A Horizontal Elbow is Just a Shortened Hook

The holiday season is upon us. The hustle and bustle is pressing, and work is still going on. But the one thing that helps me focus is my martial arts training. I am tired, because, there is so much to do. It was so nice turn everything else off and just focus on my training.

If you throw a hook, and shorten it, it is an elbow. At least the #1 horizontal elbow is a shortened hook. This little tidbit last year really helped me realize how to do the mid range hooks.

Tuesday 12/17/2019 – 2 hours… Muay Thai and Kali/Silat

Today in Muay Thai, we continued our month of elbows to clenches. I can feel my elbow strikes getting much better in execution. I am executing them well because I am stepping in, I am using my body, and I am throwing them with good form. Yay progress…!

  1. lead elbow #2 upward diagonal elbow, rear elbow #6 side in elbow, lead elbow #9 spinning backward elbow, and lead elbow #1 horizontal elbow when opponent advances.
  2. lead elbow #1 horizontal elbow, rear #8 lady putting flower behind her ear elbow, clench, 3 skip knees #2, off balance spin out, and kick
  3. Clench to 3 skip knee #2, off balance, to spin out, to double rear kick.
  4. We then got a chance to do the man in the middle drill. It was so much fun. This is a clench drill with three people. One man in the middle has to switch up between the other two to clench and get knees in. The third person has to have a hand on middle persons back.

Kali/Silat

We worked on disarms, asymmetrical sparring, blocking, passing, cutting stabbing and C cuts.

Wednesday 12/18/2019 – 1.5 hours… Muay Thai

If you have been practicing martial arts for a while I am sure you have experienced this phenomenon. If you have not, look out for it. It is absolutely amazing. This phenomenon I am talking about is the, your trainer asks you to do one thing just slightly different and it completely throws you off.

We are often taught about advancing when fighting. Today we were doing advancing drills for jab, jab, cross. However, Tony had us doing it were we had to attack while backing up. Let me say that again. Attack while backing up. Now you might think yeah… nah that is easy. But then your brain will mess you up.

So what I had to do was work on the footwork first and then work on adding the punch in. Focus a pendulum step back while throwing a jab. This felt so counter intuitive. However, by the time we finished I was able to get some what comfortable with it. This is a drill I will have to practice on my own. But it is great for when some one is advancing and you need to pop some in punches in there and then return a harder one.

Warm UP:

  1. 3 minute jump rope
  2. 1 minute burpees
  3. 3 minute jump rope

Training:

  1. Jab, jab, cross, advancing x 2 rounds
  2. Jab, jab, cross, while backing up x 2 rounds (focus on pendulum feet)
  3. Jab, jab, rear kick x 2 rounds
  4. Drill 1: x 2 rounds
    1. 1 – Jab, rear kick, lead hook, rear cross, lead hook
    2. 2 – Jab, cross, lead kick, rear cross, lead hook, rear cross
    3. 30 seconds of kicking after every round
  5. Drill 2: x 2 rounds
    1. 1 with elbow – Jab, rear knee, lead elbow
    2. 2 with elbow – Jab, cross, lead knee, rear elbow
    3. 2 with hands – Jab, rear knee, lead hook, rear cross, lead hook
    4. 2 with hands – Jab, cross, lead knee, rear cross, lead hook, rear cross
    5. 30 seconds of knees after every round

Cool Down:

  1. 30 seconds of flutter kicks
  2. 30 seconds of side scissor kicks
  3. 30 seconds of sit ups
  4. 30 seconds of planks

Thursday 12/19/2019 – 3 hours… Muay Thai and Kali

Whew I am exhausted today. My husband asked me if I wanted to practice/pad rounds, the hour before class we were going to be at the gym. My answer was no. I don’t want to, because I have been up since 4:30 am

Conditioning rounds with Tony

Muay Thai:

  1. Jump rope for 3 minutes
  2. Jab, clench, three knees, push out, teep
  3. Jab, cross, three knees, push out, teep
  4. Jab, lead hook, lead elbow, knees, push off, teep
  5. Clench, to step in off balance, to curved knees
  6. Clench sparring

Kali:

Again working on disarms, asymmetrical sparring, knife and stick.

  1. Disarm an assailant with a stick with bear hands on a #2 strike, or on the outside.
  2. Disarm an assailant with a stick with a knife in hand, on a #2 strike, or on the outside.
  3. C cut
  4. Asymmetrical sparring, one person has a stick and one has a knife.

Friday 12/20/2019 – 1 hour 20 minutes… Muay Thai and Kali

My trainer kicked my booty today. I mean it was one of the hardest workouts I have done in a long time. We had to do a ladder of exercises and run around the gym. I was gassed afterward.

I did the maths, and if I am correct, I think we did 210 burpees, 210 push ups, and 210 mountain climbers, with 20 laps of the gym.

Then he had us doing pad work. It was so hard to keep going after that ladder. But I kept working the pads. Tony brought the 110% out of me today. I loved it and I hated it. It was a fantastic workout.

  1. 20 of each burpees, push ups, mountain climbers, run around the gym onces
  2. 19 of each burpees, push ups, mountain climbers, run around the gym once
  3. 18 of each
  4. 17 of each
  5. 16 of each
  6. 15 of each
  7. 14 of each
  8. 13 of each
  9. 12 of each
  10. 11 of each
  11. 10 of each
  12. 9 of each
  13. 8 of each
  14. 7 of each
  15. 6 of each
  16. 5 of each
  17. 4 of each
  18. 3 of each
  19. 2 of each
  20. 1 of each

Then pad work:

  1. lead kick, rear cross, lead body hook, rear elbow, rear knee, lead leg kick
  2. lead double leg kick, rear cross, lead body hook, rear elbow, 2 x lead leg kick
  3. Clenching flow drilling

I am absolutely pooped. When we went to the gym today, I really did not want to do the workout. I did it cause I feel like those days when I really don’t want to go, I should go. I may not necessarily learn more, but I will push through and I will teach my body to do so. I am so happy that I stuck it out and came to class. I had my booty kicked but it was so worth it. I feel accomplished.


Thank you for reading. I learned a lot of things like attacking while backing up. I learned that asymmetric sparring with one double handed sword against 2 sticks is hard. Both those things melted my brain. I am I did it. I am happy I learned it. I have to work on those things for sure, but I learned it. I hope you have a great weekend and Happy Holiday season and a Very Merry Christmas if you celebrate it. If you have any questions feel free to ask.

Martial Arts 10/29/2019: “Don’t focus on kicking hard, you will just waste your energy”

What a quote to start the week on. “Don’t focus on kicking hard, you will just waste your energy.” Tony… This is such a Muay Thai mentality. In Muay Thai you are told that power comes later. It comes when you are throwing your strikes correctly. It comes when you are moving correctly. It especially comes when you are tired. Why does this happen? Its because your body is tired, so when you throw your kicks for instance, you will throw it in such a way that you don’t have the power to put it in hard. Hrm… Here let me see if I can explain it better.

What does not focusing on kicking hard do? Why does this matter? This seems so counter intuitive. I want to kick hard, shouldn’t I just kick hard? The reason is, this form of martial art is all about the mechanics of the body and how it moves. Instead of just using the strength in your muscles you use physics, and body mechanics. Anyone can put power in to a kick by trying to kick hard with your quads, glutes, and hamstrings. But how much harder can you kick when you use your leg like a bat on the end of a chain? You whip the leg with your torso like you would whip a flail with your arm. This lets not only the momentum that you can create with your muscles, but the huge amounts of force created since a small acceleration that happens at the center helps create a large velocity at the end of your leg.

The more tired you get, the harder you kick. Why? Because you are not forcing the kick. Your body is moving like you taught it, and your leg is going along for the ride.

Tuesday 10/29/2019 – 2 hours… Muay Thai, and Kali

There are some days after class that I sit here in front of the computer and have a hard time of thinking of much to say. Most of the time it is cause I am so exhausted I just don’t have the faculties to put to words what I am feeling. Sometimes I am so tired, I just don’t have much to say other than I just want to shower, and sleep. Tonight is the latter kind of night. So here is an overview of what we did.

In Muay Thai we were working on isolating jabs and kicks. We worked on traveling, distance management, and Thank you Tony for a great class.

In Kali we worked on panastas (cut and cover), funnel tapping and sticky hands, and Paula soot. Then we did a circle drill. It is hard to fend off a gang of five people. Thank you Paul for a great class!

Thursday 10/31/2019 – 1 hour… Muay Thai – Halloween

Well I have been trying to listen to my body. I have been fighting congestion a small cold that my husband brought home so I stayed home last night and rested. Today I went in and only did Muay Thai for training. Returning home early so I can rest.

2 years ago I would never have thought to go and train, or work out at the gym on Halloween. I am so happy I did. I love Muay Thai. I love the people. I love my Thai family. I am so happy I went.

My husband and I went int costume and Khun Kru Krysta went in costume as well. I trained the entire time in costume and it was awesome. I should wear wings when training all the time. =)

Here are some pictures I was able to get. I was a Muay Thaicorn!

Enough of that frivolity. =) On to the training. Today we worked on the Inosanto 18 count.

Khun Kru Krysta broke it down into three digestible parts. Where we worked them working on our form.

  1. Striking drill part 1
  2. burn out, lead knee, lead kick done all the way down the mat and back as fast as you can.
  3. Drill part 2
  4. Burn out, rear knee, rear kick done all the way down the mat and back again as fast as you can.
  5. Drill part 3
  6. Burn out, jab, cross, lead elbow, rear elbow done all the way down to the end of the mat and back as fast as you can.
  7. Put part 1, part 2, and part 3 together and do the whole 18 count.

I don’t have permission to publish the entire 18 count here. I would never want to disrespect my teachers and the great Innosanto, whom I have had the pleasure to meet. So until I do. I will only mention part of one of the drills we did.

There was a small part where it seems my Khun Kru was watching and she said I had perfect form. She mentioned that it was really just great, and that it was not because of the wings. I was over the moon about it. The part I am talking about is a cross, a rear elbow, a knee, and a kick.

You know what was even better. I took the compliment as it was intended. I did not second guess her, or doubt my abilities. Yay… that is progress for me.

I had a great time today. I am glad we went home after though. I needed to just rest.

Friday 11/1/2019 – 1 hour… Muay Thai – Everyone starts out with the same tools

Today we worked on something called Hanuman climbing up the temple a.k.a. flying knees. We also worked on hop double kicks.

I have some… a form of a mental block. I often think I can’t jump or do some of these more acrobatic moves. I am working on it. I see it and think wow how in the heckity heck am I going to do that. Mental blocks are the worst some times. However, I still keep trying. Today was a day filled with those things that my brain says ohh heck no we are not able to do that. So it is a great learning time for me. Pushing me beyond what I think my limits are.

Tony mentioned that all people start with the same tools. What he meant by this is that, everyone has a teep, is taught kicks, knees, elbows, and punches. But not everyone processes it the same way. They may morph it to what works for them. The basic is still there, but they may get to it in a different way. He does not want me to get down on myself about not being able to do a move just yet. He says, “you will get there.”

Training:

  1. Warm up
    • Skip knees on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Jab, cross on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Skip knees on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Jab, cross on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Skip knees on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Jab, cross on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Skip knees on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Jab, cross on bag 30 seconds as fast as you can
    • Jump rope for what felt like 10 minutes but was probably more like 5 minutes.
  1. Rear knee, to lead teep, to walking lead knee
  2. 10 kicks right side burn out
  3. Parry the cross, to jumping knee
  4. 10 kicks left side burn out
  5. Lead teep, to rear flying knee (Hanuman climbing the temple), to hop double kick
  6. 10 kicks left side, 10 kicks right side.
  7. sparring

In training when he demonstrated the hop kick he said something that just clicked for me. Now this is not the first time we have been taught the hop kick, however, this is the first time that a light bulb went off and I understood the mechanics of it. He mention that at the beginning of the hop kick, to just pull the leg up like you are shielding, then put it down, and do the kicks. This may seem silly, like well of course… but for some reason my brain and my body did not understand each other. Today when he explained it like that, it felt like a puzzle piece just slipping into place.

At the end of the class not only was I doing the hop kicks, but I was also doing the Hanuman climbing the temple. I was doing it! Yay!

In sparring I had one of my class mates compliment me on my kicks. I am placing them well, and I am actually getting them in. We talked afterward and he mentioned that he did not know if I was just more relaxed in sparring or what but it was showing.

So yay today was a good day. I seem to have something to say today. One more day of training tomorrow and then I get a much needed. break.

Saturday 11/2/2019 – 2.5 hours… Muay Thai, Kali, and Silat -Asymmetrical Sparring, and Lead With the Heel

Woot today was a great day to train. H and I started on working the flying knees I am trying to get down. So we did that, and moved on to parry the cross to a jumping knee. We did this so I could get the leaping, pushing, movement down. Similar to the flying knee. The pictures above are of that training. I wanted to take pictures to see if my feet were leaving the ground and how far.

We worked on Kali, and Silat the rest of the time. Its getting cold upper 30 F, or lower 40 F. So we worked on Kali inside instead of staff class.

Kali –

Today we in Kali we work an asymmetrical heaven and full box with sword and shield. That was awesome. The main thing we had to work on was figuring out how to hold the shield to keep from getting hit. You might think ah whats the difference. However, there is a big difference in the way you angle your shield so that you can stop the incoming blow.

Today that is what we were working on and puzzling out.

Here is a video of us puzzling it out. We are not good at it yet, but we will keep working on it. It was fun trying to puzzle out the correct angles so that we don’t get hurt or hit.

Silat – Lead with your heels

We focused on the Puta Kepala, Biset Dolem, Sieko Kinjet (elbow compress), and then we learned a new very vicious or brutal way to end a fight. Put your heel on their chin, and walk through to break their arm.

Puta Kepala – you are redirecting your opponents head, you are facing them and using their moment put them on the ground.

Biset Dolem – you are facing away from your opponent, you control the body of your opponent taking moving their balance, weight and structure out from under them to put them on the ground.

Sieko Kinjet (elbow compress) – you are facing away from your opponent, and connecting hip to hip, you off balance them, and drive/compress your elbow in to their hip. This pushes them down onto the ground.

Once they are on the ground there are many things you can do to a person. You can knee on belly and arm bar them, or knee on belly and punch them. You can knee on belly and then drop knees into belly or face. When you drop the knee on belly, we started calling it knee on soul. You can return their knife to them or in them if they are attacking you with a knife. But the last one most vicious move we did was a… walk through to break the arm. You have their attacking hand or hand with weapon, you stomp their chin with your heel, keeping their shoulder up, then you hook your rear foot on their arm and walk through. This is not a compliance this is a break. This is a person is attacking you, and does not stop, you successfully got them on the ground and you still fear for your life, so you break their arm in hopes that they will stop trying to stab you. Here is a picture of me learning to do this in a very slow careful way.

It was a great day of training. I learned a lot. I worked on things I know. I was able to puzzle out things. Some days it is great to do that. Some days it is great to just move through the motions/strikes you know, and change it up. See how it feels to do it a different way.


Thank you for reading my blog. I am so amazed that you all read it. I started this blog to catalog my thoughts, and things I learned. This is a place I can look back and see how far I have come. I can see how much I have to work on still. I hope you all have a great weekend, and had a great week. I know I did. My respects to you and your family.

Martial Arts 10/22/2019: Avoid the Pointy Bits

Today starts a new week of martial arts training. Its cold here and its only going to get colder. Its always a good idea to make sure to avoid the pointy bits, or keep your opponents weapons away from you. Whether it is knives or it is fists/feet/elbows.


Tuesday 10/22/2019 – 2 hours… Running, Muay Thai, and Kali

Today we started with a 1.5 mile run. The weather was a little cold and wet, but over all was a nice run. Now if you have been reading my blog you already know I have scoliosis, and because of it I have problems with my back, neck and hips. Today is one of those days where my hip was hurting and in turn it made my knee hurt. So to start off the run, I did not push it hard, I just concentrated on running straight and focusing on making sure my stride stayed straight. Toward the end of the run, the last half mile, my hip was feeling better, and I felt my stride was longer. So I am going to keep focusing on starting slowly in the future even if everything is feeling ok.

Muay Thai – Focus on the move, break it down

In Muay Thai today, Tony had us working on focusing on what we were doing. We so often focus on flow. Work this four count. Flow from shield into kick, or into a punch. Move from left to right. Rear kick, hook, cross, lead kick. I could tell you these in my sleep. That is good we need to learn the flow. But he had us break it down this time.

Shield a kick, then place the foot down and get back into your stance.

Throw a snapping cross. Step into it and and bring your hand back fast.

Switch kick and get back into your stance.

Don’t worry about flow worry about feeling where you body is. Work with your body.

Shield twice, throw a light kick, then feel where your foot comes down, then pushing off with your toes throw a heavy kick.

He wanted us to focus on the moves. Not trying to move everywhere in the ring, or make sure it looks pretty. I am sure he did this cause he knows we do that kind of training and drilling all the time. This was great training… for me at least. Placing the light kick was like dipping your toe in the water to see how cold it was, also to see how far you were from the water. Landing the heavier kick was like stopping in to the water. You know were the pad was and how it felt. Ok, ok so that analogy may need some work but you get the picture. This type of training helped me, because it is easy to keep throwing kicks in there. But to modulate, to slow a kick down focus on it, and then kick hard for the second one… really made me hone in and focus on what I was doing. Also it is hard to throw a slow kick, then a fast one. You should try it. Do something you are learning, make yourself slow down the first one, then quickly do it again.

Tony also really wanted us to focus on learning our own body. Because, Muay Thai really emphisizes doing what works for you. There are a lot of different moves and strikes. Not every one is going to work for you or me. When some one shields your kick, he said, “if you know your leg is heavier, or you are stronger, instead of putting your foot down, hook their leg and pull them toward you. Learn what works for you, and play with it.” This is great cause I so often take my body for granted, and when I don’t I don’t think about how it moves or what I ask of it. I am going to try to focus on my body and how it moves, and what works for me from now on.

Kali Training – My left side is stupid

Oh boy… when you take a basic move like the gunting and you make me do it on my left side. Woo do I feel stupid. My left side is stiffer, does not move as easy as my right side. This is not a muscular skeletal thing. This is not due to my scoliosis. This is due to the fact that I am a right handed person, and I don’t practice a lot on my left side.

Now when taking Kali we do sometimes practice on the left side, or my weaker side. The side that I apologize to people and say… “I am sorry my left side is stupid, and while I am telling it what I want to do, it is not always cooperating.”

Today we worked on gunting, a basic move. I was called up to the front of the class room to help demonstrate the gunting. However, we were using our left hand today. Our teacher said and I agree with him, “we should practice the side that feels the worst to us. Because that is the side that needs the most work.” So I fumbled through it, forgetting my foot work, and turning red in the process due to embarrassment. The instructor then changed to right hand, my hand, my best hand… and it it felt like I was gliding through water. I ebbed and flowed and avoided getting stabbed with the knife. Don’t worry it is a practice non edged knife. But it still stings my ego when I do get cut. Because in my head I know that if that was a real knife, it would have been a real cut. I did not move out of the way.

Class was great, and I have to say just the 1 hour of training, and my left hand side was going much smother in the end. Not perfect… more like rocky road. Smooth ice cream, then every once in a while you hit a nut, or a marshmallow. That is the part where I mess up. =)

Wednesday 10/23/2019 – 2.5 hours… Brazilian Jui Jitsu, Muay Thai

Today was a great day. I got a chance to train in Brazilian Jui Jitsu and Muay Thai.

Brazilian Jui Jitsu – little angles

We learned how to do the cross body. We then learned how to do a leg mount, and a knee mount. How to deal with cross body when the arm is in and out. We learned some tools to use when some one frames with their elbow.

Muay Thai – Flying Knees

So we have been taught flying knees before. We have been taught flying elbows as well. However, there is always some fear holding me back from executing it. So I never get much air, or move very far. But today, today seems to be the day. I did it. I was able to do flying knees, followed by an elbow. But it was fantastic. I did it over and over again. I need to work on them, however, I was moving my partner with my energy. We practiced this in between BJJ and Muay Thai.

Here is a video of part of my training rounds.

We worked on face teeps. Yes I said it teeping the face.

We just started with teeping at the teepers chin level. With a burn out of face level teeps.

Then we did face level teeps, to a walking lead kick, then throw a side in and down elbow

We did face level teeps, to rear face level kicks. I did a face level kick. I was able to do it all. It was great.

Finally we all were doing asymetrical sparring.

Today was a great day. I had a lot of fun. I was doing moves that I was not able to previously do before. Or I just did not let myself do it. Flying knees and head kicks… all in one day. I was able to do them. I need to work on them. But I was able to. What will I be able to do the next day? Woot!

Thursday 10/24/2019 – 2.5 hours… Muay Thai, and Kali

Today was a day of covering basics. Not all training sessions will be shiny and new. Not all training sessions will I learn or be able to execute a newly acquired skill. Like I did yesterday. Some days like today are going to be review of skills and techniques. Some days in some classes I am really going to need it. A majority of classes are honing that skill set, working on old techniques. I needed some refresh on my Kali foot work for sure today. I needed some refresh on my Thai shield today.

Thai training – focusing on the basics

  1. Jab, to front shield, to lead kick
  2. Kick burn outs
  3. Jab, cross, to front shield, to lead kick
  4. Kick burn outs
  5. Jab, cross, to front sheild, to lead kick, cross, hook, rear kick, teep
  6. Jumping squats burn outs
  7. 4 count pop the leather

Kali training – paula soot, hubud, cut and cover or panastas, gunting

We worked on gunting first, and realized I needed to work on my footing.

We worked on paula soot, and realized I had forgotten how to do it. So refresh was great.

We did flow of strikes 1 – 12, gunting, cut and cover, paula soot, hubud. I got pretend cut a lot. I was off my game but I worked on my footwork a lot.

Saturday 10/26/2019 – 2.5 hours… Kali, Silat

Felt absolutely exhausted yesterday, so I decided to listen to my body and just sleep when my husband went to the gym to train Muay Thai. So this morning I woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed. We went to the gym, and studied Kali, Silat, and did some sparring at the end.

It turns out I have a little post nasal drip now, so my husband may have brought home a cold. Meh…

Kali Training:

But training was fun and fundamental today… ehh ehh ehh… ok I will stop. Instead of our usual staff class outside, it was raining so we did kali double stick today.

We worked on:

  1. Heaven 6 – 6 count drill sticks pointed to heaven
  2. Equis with low back hand and high back hand
  3. Redondo with low back hand and high back hand
  4. Abecedario – basic back hand drills

It was great working on basics again. I worked a lot on my foot positions. In Kali you want to make sure your feet are moving the right way. Because if you don’t your knee, leg, or other part of you body will be vulnerable. If your foot work is incorrect, then your opponent can hit your leg with a stick or knife and either shatter that leg or give you a huge laceration. These are all things you should be avoiding.

Here is a video of one of the drills we did. Abecedario is what it is called.

Silat Training:

Today in Silat training, my instructor said something that really resonated with me. “Most Silat moves, are made to calculate the weapons.” So when you are say doing a puta kapala. You are controlling arm that has the weapon, and when you throw the opponent, you then follow them down to the ground keeping control of that weapon. I had never thought about it that way.

Again we had some great training in this class. We were also able to approach class like a workshop. Since we have worked these moves before. We were able to work on some ways to escape the knee on belly. In the end I like the teeter totter move the best. Where you move their knee toward the ground, upa a little, and push them off of you.

We worked on:

  1. Basset Dal – rear facing to opponent inside leg sweep
  2. Basset Luar – rear facing to opponent outside leg sweep
  3. Puta Kapala – is a throw sometimes called “turning the skull”

Here is a video of me working on how to escape a knee on belly after I have been puta kapala’d. I teeter tottered, forcing his knee toward the ground, upa’d and pushed him off.

Address the arm first. If they have you in an arm lock get that into a safe position then work on getting them off you.

I took yesterday/Friday off. It was good for me. I was exhausted, and falling asleep when I stopped for even a few minutes. I realized I needed the break. I am glad I did. I had a great set of classes today, and was able to give it my all.

I am off to a Halloween party now. Thanks for reading. Keep working to be the best you that you can be. My respects.

Muay Thai and Kali…Timing and distance management are the real skills, Trig 10, Palm Stick

2 hours of Muay Thai and Kali training. Yesterday I worked on kicking through my opponent, and I was sore from that work out. But today after I practiced my Wai Krhu I loosened up.

Muay Thai – Timing and distance management are the real skills

Kru Kristen had us drilling more knee entries from catch jab and scoop of incoming cross. When you were able to push your training partner back we then worked into the Thai 4 counts. We also were working drills to feel when your opponent breaks the distance or enters your striking range with knees.

I find my knees are the worst skill in Muay Thai. I realized today that it was because when I had a herniated disk, they hurt so much to put knees in, that I have been babying my back since then. I was placing my knee but not pushing through. Kru Kristen told me again to give myself permission to hit and push through. So today I was working on pushing through my opponent to knee into and through them. Driving them back, so I could kick. I was putting the knees in and it was not hurting at all. This makes me so happy.

We also worked on full plumb to fence control of the opponents arm, and then to controlling the opponent with a choke or a putting the blade of your hand into the pocket of the arm and controlling your opponent by controlling their shoulder socket.

Toward the end, Kru Kristen wanted to emphasize that you may know the moves, but in a fight it is about knowing distance and timing management. If you cannot judge distance correctly then you will be hit, if you cannot get the timing down right, and avoid their hits you will get hit. In a fight you want to get hit less and hit more. Its the energy your opponent gives you, that you need to harness and return to them. If they commit to a shot then do a destruction, step off the line and return shots at them.

Kali/Silat – Panantukan Palm Stick and Trigg Ten

In Kali we worked on Silat again, Panantukan, and we practiced the Trigg Ten. Kru Kristen wanted us to do the Trigg Ten to focus on committing to the shots. Because with panantukan tonight we worked with palm stick. Where we could use the inside gunting and outside gunting to mouse the funny bone nerve cluster. This is were we find the entry for the gunting and use the palm stick, we can really hurt our opponent, or attacker.

A palm stick is any implement, usually a short stick, but can be a flash light, or a sharpie that you can use to do destructions (a destruction is a move where you damage the attackers hand with your elbow, knees, or a weapon in hopes to deter your attacker) on your opponent with.

Here are some examples of palm sticks:

So when your attacker throws a punch instead of parrying, or blocking you can hit your opponents hand with a palm stick, sharpie, flashlight, or the punyo/butt of a bladed weapon. Most people will stop trying to punch you if you hit them with this. Also it has a good chance of breaking their hand.

The Trigg Ten is a punching/boxing drill, I filmed me drilling below. Here are the punch combinations.

Trigg Ten:

  1. 1 jab
  2. 2 jabs
  3. 3 jabs
  4. 1 cross
  5. 2 crosses
  6. 3 crosses
  7. jab then cross
  8. cross then jab
  9. jab, jab then cross
  10. cross, cross, then jab

It is really late and I need to go to bed. I hope you all had a great day. Thank you for reading.

Thursday Muay Thai and Kali… Level 1 test, Pummeling 4 ways

2 hours of Muay Thai and Kali. Today was an exciting day. Every last Thursday of the month we have a testing day. Those that are testing, or have had enough training to be told they are testing. I just tested last month so this was not a testing month for me. However, we did have a teammate who wanted to be tested, and he was ready for his level 1 test.

Muay Thai – Level 1 test


For reference I have tested and been awarded a green armband so far. Level 1 test produces a the red armband. We all started with line up and showing different Thai moves. For instance all the Elbows, 1-8, then all the kicks, then all the knees.

Then we worked on some drills, and after that it was time for D’s Thai test. Where we were supposed to cheer him on. I am losing my voice so I was assigned counting of all knees that were put in silently. =)

Level 1 test round 1
Level 1 test round 2

Kali/Silat – pummeling 4 ways

On Tuesday we worked on a Silat Puta Kapala from pommel entry. This time we were working on the same thing, but we got to work on 4 ways to pummel.

Pummeling:

  1. Traditional pummeling where you swim between each others arms. Often used in Jui Jistsu.
  2. Bicep pummeling, where you are controlling one bicep, and your training partner is controlling the other side. Where you make a c with your hand to control their bicep and slide your other hand under to get out of their c clamp.
  3. Neck pummeling, where you control the neck, you pawk or hit the arm to make space, mouse their arm right above the elbow, and then you shoot your arm in behind their head. This is great when some one has a weapon and you are controlling that hand so that they can’t hurt you. You could side elbow their hand away or or downward elbow their hand out of your neck as well then grab their head/neck.
  4. Then we did the wrist pommeling. First single hand wrist pommeling, where you grab their wrist and then they twist that same wrist and grab your wrist. Or you hit down on their hand to remove their hand and you grab their wrist and upper arm to keep control. You could hit up on the wrist from below and then control the arm by holding the wrist and right above the elbow as well.

We then did the Puta Kapala throws, and we drilled all of these pummels. Switching through all 4, and having fun. Almost like sparring with just pummels. It was fun to see who could get the upper hand, and win control over the other person.

So that is all for me today. Its always exciting to see a Level 1 test. This is the 3rd Level 1 I have seen. Class was great again. I love Muay Thai, and Kali, and can’t wait till next class. I need to shower, and go to bed.

Thanks for reading and have a great day.

Tuesday Muay Thai and Kali…Distance Management, Flow, and Axe Kick Puta

Today was a great day in class again. We did 2 hours of martial arts, Muay Thai and Kali/Silat. I had a great time working with my class mates. I came into the class very annoyed with how the children were acting and treating me today. (They are getting older and talking back, and I am the enemy today.) I know I am not special. Every parent deals with this at some time or another. I was really at my wits end, and while I am not feeling 100% about today. I only mention it to maybe help other parents know this is normal and for me, exercise is sometimes the ticket to re-centering myself. It really is cathartic to just hit and kick things, focus on my form, and trying to get better.

Muay Thai – Distance Management, and Flow

So today in Muay Thai we worked on distance management and flow. Really we strive to making our strikes flow from one to another. Not just staccato da…. da…. da… but flowing da da, da, or da,da,da. If you have played music you will know what I am talking about. However, in the real world, or even in a professional fight. Your opponent is not going to stand there and let you hit them. You have to hit them multiple times, and the theory is you will get one hit in. You may not get all hits in. You most likely will not get all hits in. They will block some of your hits if they are smart, but one or two will land and then you switch it up.

When we work on distance for instance, we work on entries from far away to up close or in the “box”. Meaning the opponents box around them, or personal space. For this drill we were working on starting in the box, or in elbowing range. The theory is that when you elbow some one, they will naturally move away from the damaging elbows, to now knee range, where you can knee them further away from you and then you can land a kick further damaging them.

As you can see… I have a lot to work on with my knees. I baby my back a little bit due to the previous injury, but every day it gets better. However, I need to eject more, and as you can see when I do eject the person more with my knee, I have to make up the distance. Which means I should do a hop kick or some other way to get in. I can see where I need to improve. This is the top reason I take these videos. They help me see where I am failing and what I should work on.

Kali/Silat – Puta Kapala with an Axe kick

Today in Silat, we worked on Puta Kapala from the grappling entry. Where we are “swimming” in each others arms, trying to get the the upper hand. Or in this instance the over hook. I get the over hook, lock out opponents elbow, step out, knee his head, then lift my inner leg up in an axe kick, then push him over and around with my leg.

Kru Kristen did a great job with class today, and I am so grateful for such talented instructors that take their job seriously.

I had a great time in class. I worked up a fantastic sweat. I got some great compliments about my elbow, to knee, to kick combinations. I take it as I am doing something right. Maybe not perfectly but I am doing it right or improving. Kru Kristen is not the kind to give hollow compliments. So she means it when she does.

Thank you all for reading my blog. I am always amazed that you are, and that there are so many of you from all over the world. I never thought I would have 52 people following me. Comment if you have any questions. Have a great day!

Thursday Muay Thai and Kali…Punctuate the sentence, Sparring, Silat kicks from the ground, Langkah

2 hours of Muay Thai and Kali and I had an amazing class. I was asked to spar in Muay Thai and while I was totally nervous I did it. Yay!

I am a little exhausted at the moment. I have had on top of my normal routine, two extra cake orders. You see if you did not know I am a Pastry Chef and I have people ask me to do birthday cakes, pastries, wedding cakes, etc.

I am not complaining by any means, but I am just tired. I have been trying to get more sleep in. My average sleep last month was 4.5 to 5 hours of sleep a night. Lately I have been averating 5.5 to 6. So that is an upward trend. I know it takes about 2 weeks for my habbit to stick that I go to bed earlier. That is good. Enough rambling back to my workout stuff.

Muay Thai – Punctuating the sentence, Sparring

Kru Kristen had us all warming up. Then we were working on elbows. Feeling the resistance from our training partners then doing a forward elbow thrust then a side in elbow, to tie up in a full plumb, and get knees strikes in.

Then I was asked to spar. I kinda made a meep sound and said yes… sure. Sparing is both hard and scary for me. I fear I will forget all the things I have been taught. I know that forgetting is normal, and I know we all forget some of what we have learned in the moment when the adrenaline drops. However, I want so much to do well, oh and also not get hit a lot. I have gotten better about being scared of being hit. I have been hit a number of times in the head, I have been kicked in the side, and kneed in the leg and kicked in the leg. However, the fear is still there. One day it won’t be so scary but it still is. I don’t plan on being a fighter professionally, however, part of me is excited about the next time I get to spar.

Anyway I got into the ring and did it. I sparred again. I think this is my third time. I stepped up and did it. I did get punched in the face twice and I ate some leg kicks and a torso kick. But I got in a few face punches, some torso hooks, and I got a 5 or 6 good kicks in. I felt accomplished. We were sparring to help one of our team that is going to go fight in a professional fight. He is training and those of us who were asked to spar all helped him do conditioning. We were coached by Kru Kristen that when throwing we want to throw a cross in afterward. “It is like punctuating your sentence” as Kru Kristen says.

Kali – Silat from the ground, Langkah

We had a guest instructor named In Chun Kim. He was amazing. He brought us back to basics of Silat. He had us learning the kicks from the ground.

This video is similar to what we did. It is not me or my video.

Then we worked on foot work or Langkah and learning where our opponents balance breaks, so that we can better get our opponent off balance and it helps with our Basset Dal, and Basset Luar, Sapu Dal, and Sapu Luar. Or our foot sweeps inside and out, or our trips inside and out.

Langkah: Stepping and footwork
1) Langkah Lurus: Linear stepping
6) Langkah Persegitiga: Triangle stepping
4) Langkah Sigsag: Zig zag stepping

For this we did the above, 1, 4, and 6. All great practice, and really gave me insight to why and how we to do the moves better. If you understand the basics better you can understand the moves better. Sometimes I try to muscle the persons foot off the mat, but all you have to do is off balance them correctly and it becomes so much simpler.

Today was a great day and a lot of great information. I had a great amount of a-hah moments. Punctuating the sentence with a cross, and the langkah or footwork and how to do our Silat moves better. Where some of the things just clicked. I also had a good time trying something I did not know if I could do those cool Ground kicks.

Thank you for reading… if you have any questions let me know. Have a great night. I need to get to sleep. =)

Tuesday Muay Thai and Kali…Cross, elbow, Sapu Luar, Sapu Dalam

Two hours of Muay Thai and Kali. It was a blast. This day was not a huge cardio day for our class. Meaning we did not do a lot of conditioning today. However it was still a lot of fun.

Muay Thai – Cross

In Muay Thai we worked on the cross, elbows, and clench work. While not the exciting dynamic kicking, boxing 20, or Thai 15 routine. I believe there is value in taking a step back and working on the basics. For instance my cross. While I can hit a cross just fine, there are a lot of fine tuning things I need to work on so that I get full extension.

At 5 foot I am short and so I often short change my punches. Because I feel like I don’t or cant get the distance in. However, today I was working on just that. As an orthodox fighter, I have to step out to the left and pivot on the back foot, throw the punch where I turn my hand at the end and point my first two knuckles at the opponent. What this does is extend my body and covers my right hands side of my face with my shoulder.

Sometimes it is good to just focus on one thing and try to make it the best you can. Then trying to do all the things the best. Kru Kristen, says she would rather us be great at a few things than mediocre to horrible at all the things.

Here is a video of me practicing just that. Again not the cool flashy, fast drills that we do some days, but a necessary step back to get these strikes closer to perfection.

Kali – Silat Sapu Dal, and Sapu Luar

In Kali we were working on Silat again, and while we did Basset Dal/Basset Luar before, where our back is toward our opponent. Sapu is where we are facing our opponent. Luar is outside leg sweep, and Dal is inside leg sweep.

We worked on off balancing our opponent only to sweep the leg out from under them just at the right time. This is very fun to do, and gets simpler once you understand the physics behind body movement.

We worked on a take down where you weave your arm between the legs lock out our elbow grab their hand. Pull their hand to the 3 point in the triangle and nudge them with your shoulder. This is a move you can do from the ground if they have hit you and you fell.

We also worked on if we are prone, just fallen, coming back up into combat ready stance, and then grabbing the persons arm and behind the knee to pull them down. Place knee on belly and then punch them.

Today was fun. We got to do sticky legs and work on some strikes where we take steps back and just work on our form and techniques.

Have a great day and thank you for reading. I am so amazed. I now have 51 international subscribers reading my blog. Who would have thought.

Thursday Muay Thai and Kali… Encouraging the body, Puta/Basset from Pummel

It has been an interesting week to say the least. Sick kid, turned to emergency allergic reaction to meds kid, all while I am trying to keep the household in order, and work life going. I had my own yearly check up. Which I am happy to say I am healthy, but had some miscommunication so I was a little concerned.

Muay Thai- Encouraging the body

In Muay Thai today, we had a blast. I was sweating up a storm. I don’t know if you can see how soaked I am in this picture. Anyway, we worked on the 8 version of 4 count today again. Video of the full 8 are on this weeks previous Tuesday Muay Thai and Kali post. We then worked on clench work with a take down, where you off balance a person so they fall down. This is where our Kru Kristen, also shows us how to “Encourage the body”, where if they are not going down you kick the knee. sweep the leg, kick the ankle. In training we do not do that, but we place our foot in the correct position. If we did it in training, we would be hurting our partners and that would be bad.

We did ladders as well, where you start at one kick on each side, up to 5 kicks on each side. Those are brutal and fun at the same time. I will add these to our Wednesday training sessions.

Kali – Puta Kapala and Basset Dal from Pummel

So today in Kali, we worked more on Silat and take downs from the Pummel entry. We worked on “swimming” with our partner where we move back and forth trying to get underhooks in. We are working on feeling our partners energy. By energy I mean, when we can feel where our partner is going to based on the movement of center of gravity. When I can feel it change, I can get a better handle on when it will be advantageous for me to move them and get them off balance. Then I can put their bodies where I want them to, and can do the most damage.

This was fun, because we have now done Puta Kapala, and Basset Dal, from the shield block entry, from the striking entry, and now from pummel entry. I am starting to see where all of this connects and it is awesome. When I make that mental connection it clicks more for me.

Anyway thank you all for reading. I am amazed I have readers from all over the world, and I want to say hallo/hello to you all. Have a great night, I need to be better about getting to bed on time.

Tuesday Muay Thai and Kali… 4 more Thai 4 counts, and Silat Basset Dal

forgive me I have wild hair

Getting to kick and hit things in Muay Thai was very cathartic. I have been carrying around some anxiety about a lot of things including my son being sick, and having a horrible allergic reaction. Having to watch him like a hawk to make sure that he is still breathing.

We found out that my son is allergic to the quinolone antibiotic. That is what was causing his reaction. So he is off of those antibiotics, we are hoping his infection is cleared up, and now we have to dose him with Benadryl.

Muay Thai, 4 more Thai 4 counts

On to more fun things. Today was Muay Thai and Kali. It was 2 hours of hitting and kicking, and it was great! I love learning, and trying to get tweak my movements to make them better, faster, more powerful.

So today Kru Kristen was back. She went to the Inosanto instructor camp. They did some Thai 4 counts that she wanted us to do today. So we added them to our normal 4.

Normal 4 counts include:

  1. Left kick (torso or leg), cross, hook, right torso roundhouse kick
  2. Right kick (torso or leg), hook, cross, left torso roundhouse kick
  3. Left kick (torso or leg), cross, hook, left torso roundhouse kick
  4. Right kick (torso or leg), hook, cross, right torso roundhouse kick

We added these four for a total of 8:

  1. Jab, cross, left kick (torso or leg), right torso kick
  2. Jab, cross, right kick (torso or leg), left torso kick
  3. Jab, cross, left kick (torso or leg), left torso kick
  4. Jab, cross, right kick (torso or leg), right torso kick.

These are not any new moves for us, but it is a new way of drilling and getting repetitions in. Because, we all know one of the key ways you improve is to get repetitions in.


Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”

Pablo Picasso

The key is to over train your body, and mind. You do this so that your muscle memory and your actions become automatic. At first your learning is forced. You are so focused on the how, and mimicking others, that it is hart and you have to slog through it. Think back to learning how to read, and how it felt like work. Well eventually it is a automatic thing. You can read things fast, and glean the knowledge you need from just a glance. Eventually we hope to have our bodies move in Thai as if we are just walking, or running. It is automatic, rote, or something you do without thinking. When my brain see’s something coming at my head, my brain will eventually send signals for my body to react and cover to protect the head.

Here is a video of all 8 Thai 4 counts

Kali – Basset Dal vs Sapu Dal

In Kali we worked on Silat again. We learned that Basset means facing away, and Dal means in between the legs. Where Sapu means facing the opponent, and Dal means between the legs. So today we focused on Basset Dal, where we entered from the similar Thai 4 count. Left kick, Cross, Hook, Right kick.We answer the left kick with a destruction, then we slip the cross, then we had to high cover the hook and perform a posting choke, where the thumb is right under the adams apple, then we block the right kick while pushing the opponent away. After that we move to control the arm by rolling the bicep and forcing them down, off balancing them and then dumping them.

This was fun, and we are getting to a point where we know some of the basic moves, such as basset dal, and puta kapala, that we are now just fine tuning it, trying to make them more smooth, more flowing, and more finding the entries.

I got dumped multiple times and better yet I got to dump a lot of people. It is fun to feel where body mechanics takes over and your actions cause peoples bodies to just move to your whim. Because I guarantee you if you push on a persons knee they will move it back. Their body is smarter than you think and will want to preserve functionality, by avoiding being hurt.

We got to do a sticky legs drill, where we got to feel just that. Where your partner/opponent can feel when your body is about to move, and you have to re-position, and get them in a hold again.

Thank you all for reading my blog. I started this and continue to do this to log/write down my training, and my journey. So I am surprised that any of you read it. If you have any questions please feel free to ask.

Pablo Picasso had it right… I am going to keep learning Muay Thai, and Kali like a professional fighter would, and then I can perform it with my flare like any great martial artist.