Saturday, June 23, 2007

Today's TDA Tip: Best opening footwork

When teaching, I stress over and over that footwork is everything. Position is the key to good offense or defense in sparring or self defense, and what gets you there is footwork. With that in mind what's the best opening footwork to use, if you are reacting, and not attacking?

First, you almost never want to move straight back (see Why do we get hit?, and look at reason #2, "You are back on your heels"). The reason you want to rarely, if ever, move straight back is because almost everyone can run you down if you're moving backward. The only time you should do that is if you have no other choice (obstacles or multiple opponents), and you should angle off as soon as you can.

Instead, move laterally - either left or right, and depending on your intentions, move toward your opponent's flank at a 45-degree angle. Your best bet is to move so that you are behind the lead shoulder, which normally means you're moving away from the power hand or leg of your adversary.

See also:
Today's TDA Tip: Avoid Moving Straight Back!

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