Sunday, June 5, 2011

The Evasive Reply

Recently we've been working on 'the box' and 'the wall' - basically blocks and parries.
It's never a great idea to clash swords force to force, even the highest quality Katana is susceptible to damage let alone Filipino swords that were generally made from much poorer quality metal.
If you are in range with no chance at evasion, and it's either your sword or you that will take the hit ... obviously you choose the sword, force on force or whatever, but more preferable is parrying, what we call having a 'wall'.
Note: There are ways of 'catching' a cut force on force turning a block into a parry, and ways of choosing which part of the blade to use to save the edge from damage.

One definition of 'parry' in the dictionary is an 'evasive reply', and though this definition was meant in the context of speaking, it also applies here as there has to be movement associated with going with the force of an opponents cut, as opposed to clashing against it.
Parries can be done near the edge of the range where there is still space for movement (shearing or 'cutting the angle'), or sometimes close in where you have to physically move your opponent's weapon off line and create space to move into (using an arc to meet a straight line), and are very useful as added security when closing.
Blocks are generally 'oh shit' maneuvers and generally occur well inside the range or to protect an exit.

On the way in, stay behind the wall, on the way out, stay inside the box ... and seeing as the majority of the time you should be either on your way in or your way out, not hanging out on the edge,  best understand the defensive line as it needs to move with you.

(Note: The live hand can sometimes deflect a strike angle, changing force on force blocks to 'catches' or going with the force, but checks are a gift, take them if they are there to use, but chase them and you greatly up the risk of losing your hand.)

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