” Respect the weapon, accept the pain, train hard! ”
Besides the generic names of Arnis, Eskrima or Kali, the various filipino fighting systems
have one thing in common: they all begin with weapons training.
The main reason for this fact is the believe that nobody will ever fight empty handed
if there is a chance to use a weapon or any surrounding object as a weapon.
Another reason is that training with weapons will develop good conditioning,
power and awareness and the transition to empty hands will be easier.
There are 3 main categories of Filipino Martial Arts systems:
A. Blade oriented systems – the stick used in training is regarded as a blade, hitting power
is not emphasized, footwork is very agile and the long distance is favored for fighting.
There are no blocks, only deflections.
B. Stick oriented systems – they emphasize the ”power shots” – devastating strikes.
The practitioners of such styles are succesful in modern competitions,
with protective gear. They fight in large and medium range.
C. Short range oriented systems – they place a great importance on the use
of the ”live hand” (the hand without weapon) and they make a very easy transition
to empty hands. Very suitable for self-defense and for military/police training.
In training there are various weapons used (long, medium and short stick,
knife, sword, flexible tools etc.), but all the FMA are based on principles – which can be
extended from stick to umbrella or glass-bottle, from knife to pen or cellphone.
My menthors and trainers in Arnis-Eskrima are:
De Campo 1-2-3 Original - a long range stickfighting system
and Igmat Baraw Knife Fighting System.
short range stickfighting system named Kalye Todo Arnis
- his personal interpretation of Balintawak Arnis-Eskrima.
We do not learn how to defend against weapons – this is utopic.
We learn how to efficiently use them in a fight.