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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Defending Against Knife Attacks

Many of our class lessons are available at Sifu Hill's YouTube page. One of our more recent and important classes that we put up are the knife defense lessons. Every few weeks, the Systems within Systems school will practice disarming and defending against various knife attacks.

It's not a pretty class where people use sweeping Hollywood-style blocks or somersualt over their opponent's heads. In our drills, we learn to be aware of how our blocks and our fighting stances align up with the attacking movement as we slash, stab, and slice towards each other (with practice knives, of course). Sometimes, someone gets poked, or screws up a move and misses a block, but it's all part of the learning process. Ultimately, the knife defense classes are a great way for students to visualize different knife attack scenarios and build confidence in their movement against such violent attacks.

Please take a look at one of self-defense classes by Sifu Lawrence Hill:

Part 1

Part 2

Key Class Lessons:

  • Small, everyday items can be used to help defend yourself. Thick pens, keys ready in your hand, rolled up magazines...weapons are extensions of yourselves, and should be easily accessible yet inconspicuous items for your use.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. There's a reason why all self-defense classes emphasizes "awareness" as a principal rule. However, "be aware" doesn't mean "be hyper-paranoid whenever you go out". It only takes a minute in your day to take a quick glance around when you step into a new place: notice the type of people walking around you, and the openness of the area you're in (whether it's a small space like a subway or a crowded sidewalk).
  • If someone is going to attack you, be ready to react. Don't freeze up and be afraid; in class, we call it a "combat state of mind". You have to be ready to respond if someone else is coming maliciously towards you. 
If you are in the New Brunswick, NJ area and would like to see what we do in class, feel free to stop by. Click here for the Systems within Systems school contact information. 

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