I was recently exchanging tweets with Sam Guthrie, a martial artist, and Twitter buddy regarding the utility of the various martial arts with respect to defending the Western boxing jab – something which I contend many Asian systems have trouble. He related that he taught one Kali class where they covered approximately thirty responses to the jab, and send me this Inosanto video as an example. (Forward to approximately 4:00 to start viewing that particular part).
Inosanto is covering some of what he calls classical Panantukan responses to the jab technique. I have to admit that though I have some training in Arnis, a Filipino martial art utilizing bladed or blunt weapons (commonly trained with sticks), I had little exposure to Panantukan, which, according to a non-authoritative source, Wikipedia, is “the boxing component of Filipino martial arts,” and “a part of eskrima.”
I state my experience to make sure that you understand that I am not an expert, or even student of Panantukan. I am, however, what I like to think of as a practical martial artist, and can see what I believe are the benefits of the system.
First of all, any system which has, as the Wikipedia entry states, a variety of “street” techniques such as elbows, knees, shoulder strikes, head-butts, low kicks, and knees, has a lot going for it. If it has the inherent flow of the Filipino stick arts, known as Kali, Arnis, Escrima, and the like (hereafter referred to by Arnis), then it has all the makings of a sophisticated and practical system.
I posit “practical” because it blends the ability to handle knifes, sticks, clubs, and any weapon of opportunity with the ability to content in any striking range whether an attacker has a weapon or is unarmed.
As you know, I’ve posted repeatedly about the disadvantages of sport systems which have descended from true martial arts – including the Taekwondo, BJJ, Judo, or even Kendo. I acknowledge that all of those arts have their practical aspects, and even some variants that preserve the original, or intended, martial techniques that are against the rules in the modern sport. I refer to the most commonly practiced though – they are stripped of the techniques which are most effective in combat. Arnis is the same, in that there are sport tournaments with protective equipment and rules which reduce it’s effectiveness. Overall, however, the sport aspects are less practiced and emphasized, at least in the US, in my opinion.
Instead, the average Arnis practitioner studies his art for the effective techniques, or the art itself, as classically taught, which is combat-effective. Fewer, though, seem to know the empty-hand aspects known as Panantukan.
I would recommend that anyone who studies the Filipino art of the stick, sword, and knife would be well served by checking out, and learning whatever he can about the entire art – I know I will whenever I can.
Comments or questions? Pass em along, and I’ll try to get answers!
For more information:
Wikipedia on Panantukan
TDA What is the relationship of sport judo to unarmed combat?
TDA The Martial Art vs Sport Debate
TDA Training for Sport vs Training for Combat
Blauer Tactical Systems SUBMISSION, SUBDUAL, OR SURVIVAL?
TDA When Arts Become Sports
TDA If it's against the rules, then it must work!
TDA Why Are Martial Sports Superior?
TDA Enhance Your Empty Hand Speed
TDA Ain't none of it is real!
Technorati Tags: Filipino Martial Arts,Arnis,Kali,Escrima,Panantukan
Interact with us at our TDA Training Facebook page!
All rights reserved. Permission must be obtained before use. Copyright 2010