I have been studying at the Academy of Kali and Wing Chun for ten months now and last Saturday it celebrated 23 years of business. During the celebration we watched a student from the kids class demonstrate the Pi Chuan form from Hsing-I. Then Sifu had us demo for the kid, and it was interesting and unplanned on our part.
It was the Four Corners drill. One man in the middle, and one on each corner. Sifu called a name, they attack with a single direct attack (one of the five ways of attack), and the middle defends with whatever they wish. Usually what is the opening move of a fight is a looping right hand punch and that qualified as a single direct attack. Same with the two handed push also seen a lot.
It was very educational in that outside a parry, I did not use a single thing I learned in class as a spontaneous reaction. No planning, just moving when they did, I was trying in my mind to simulate blitz attacks you do not see coming. I did verify my flinch response that I had discovered a few weeks earlier for high or low frontal assaults. Before I had started training, I really did not have any effective response. My hands would twitch when surprised but never came up to stop anything.
A few weeks ago in the park while training in the park, Jeff sped up to break the rhythm and get me to move off center in a forward motion to counterattack. It surprised me (just like a fight) and I discovered my flinch response.
Move backward at an angle while parrying.
Why is this important?
In his book Facing Violence author Rory Miller writes about developing a Counter Ambush technique and training it to reflex speed. He writes that everyone flinches when surprised, freezes (even for a split second as training kicks in) and then fights or escapes. Tony Blauer has made a career studying and training this response. The move should be simple, ideally putting your attacker in a worse position while putting you into a better one that is defensive and has you damaging them.
A palm heel does all four, while my parry retreat does two, maybe three potentially depending how I moved. Therefore, to design an effective response from my flinch I will take from the Wing Chun principle of Simultaneous Attack and Defense or ‘lin sil die dar’. The parry will become a strike and accomplish three of the four prerequisites for a good counter ambush move.
Now to learn how to generate power while going backward…and do some testing.