Hawaii Martial arts Ezine Issue 42 Continuous Blocking Drill

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Quotes of the day:

A Battle Lost A Battle Won

One life before this

I met Death at his door

He greeted me

All bloody and sore

From the battles that he'd fought with me

And he said, "Aren't you glad you're free?"

Well I spit in his face

And he smiled at me

I smiled back and said, "Yes, I'm glad I'm free."

"Now send me back

You son of a !@#$

This time I'll get it right

I'll defeat that witch

I will not go, before my time

So if you want a piece of me

Stand in line

This time I'll meet my destiny

She's in Hawaii

So set me free

by Sensei J. Richard Kirkham B.Sc. 10/11/1998

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Does kata (forms) help you with self-defense? Your Answer

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RK, here's some possible questions to throw out to all...(you can change them a little, if my meanings are unclear):

Is YOUR art a "technique" art, or a "form" art? What's the difference between the two? Which should I practice more of, technique or form?



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Can a good street fighter beat a black belt? Your Answer

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A subscriber has written in and was wondering what martial arts exercises he can do to help lose weight? Your Response

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Concerning The Myths of Internal Energy Strikes

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A Reader posed this question. It really happened: Question: What should happen to a martial arts instructor who uses his position to gain trust and then have a sexual encounter with a minor.

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What is the best defense against a gun?

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Continuous Blocking Drill

Warning: this martial arts blocking drill can cause bruising of the forearms. Light open hand facial contact is used in continuous blocking drill

This is probably one of the best blocking drills I’ve ever developed I stopped doing the blocking drill for a while because some self-defense students were getting their arms bruised my students blocking skills began diminishing so I reinstituted continuous blocking drill asking self-defense students if their arms bruised easily and being extra cautious of self-defense students arms getting red or tender during continuous blocking drill. If the martial arts student’s arms did begin showing signs of bruising I assigned a different drill for that self-defense student for that time period.

Advantages of Continuous Blocking Drill

The self-defense student blocks an actual person's strikes.

The self-defense student gets used to seeing hands coming at his or her face and body. This is a big plus. If you are attacked and it is the first time you've seen a punch coming at you, you will probably get hit by that punch.

The self-defense student learns to block effective techniques that he or she was struck with previously.

Disadvantages of Continuous Blocking Drill

The self-defense student’s arms may bruise easily.

The self-defense student's stress level in actual combat in not developed unless you change the drill, which I have done in the past to suit my self-defense students' needs.

Procedure for Continuous Blocking Drill

Self-defense student pairs up with a partner. If the martial arts instructor wishes to avoid troublesome self-defense students partnering up together without giving the troublesome self-defense students attention for their negative behavior, the martial arts instructor may have students count off by fives or however many pairs of self-defense partners the martial arts instructor would like to have.

The partner will stand near a wall so he or she does not back up during continuous blocking drill. The self-defense student will throw open hand slaps at the partners head and body. Fingertips may be used to simulate straight techniques to the body and forehead. Although I have never had my self-defense students wear eye protection for continuous blocking drill it would not be a bad idea to do so.

Partners attempt to block the students open hand slaps to the best of their abilities. Instead of using the word block I will use the words knock away, as beginning students do not feel they know any blocks. If a student touches the partner on the face or body with a slap or touch, the student repeats the combination over and over again until the partner develops a block for it. This has a two-fold benefit; the partner develops a block for an effective combination and the student gets to repeat an effective combination helping it to become a reflex. All that it takes to make these effective techniques basically is to close your fist and add some power to it. The pattern of effective movements remains the same.

Self-defense and partners should switch feet so they do not get used to defending and attacking with the same foot back all of the time. This can be done at time intervals and self-defense students and partners can even rotate along the line. The last in each line switching roles as attacker and defender. This offers the benefit of a wide variety of partners and younger self-defense students are less likely to get board or start goofing off. This rotation method and other drills are mentioned in my martial arts ezine article Modern Methods of Teaching an Ancient Art.


Environmental training is very important in defending yourself. If a self-defense student is uncomfortable in a certain position or situation that situation should be executed more often in a safe manner. In continuous blocking drill, this is done by taking away blocking tools and switching feet. Have partners block with only one arm as a variation both the front arm, same side as the forward leg, and then the back arm, same side as the rear leg. Partners will notice a difference in how close a strike must get when comparing blocking with the front hand to blocking with the rear hand. When continuous blocking drill is brought up to full speed with one hand blocking, you will also notice what weight lifters refer to as the pump effect, from working the muscles in your arms so hard.

I've also added kicks to continuous blocking drill as well but either very slowly or for advanced self-defense students.

Continuous Blocking Drill is not the perfect drill. Anyone who says they have the perfect self-defense drill is either lying or lacks enough experience to know that nothing, even full contact fighting, is the perfect drill. I personally noticed a comfort when blocking attacks that allows me time to think of a counter-attack and end the situation quickly without threats of injury to myself. For this comfort, I give Continuous Blocking Drill a great deal of credit.

Sensei J. Richard Kirkham is a 27 year martial art veteran. He is a dual certified teacher with a Bachelors of Science Degree in Physical Education with a background in Special Education, Exercise Physiology, Movement Education, and Behavioral Modification. He is presently an in home tutor, self-defense instructor, and body guard. Mr. Kirkham is presently teaching in Honolulu Hawaii. He can be reached at 808-528-5775 Ext. 5. He has one challenge which has yet to fail him, he can increase anyone's striking power 50% to 100% in one lesson. For those who cannot see him in person, he offers the same service with others on affordable custom video tapes. Sensei Kirkham has the unique service of offering in home classes so that people may learn self-defense in the privacy of their home without worrying about travel after a hard days work.

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 All right that's about it this time. How often will this come out? You let me know how often you would like to come out by submitting articles, space ads, and or classifieds. Have any suggestions yourself? Let me know.


Sensei J. Richard Kirkham



Martial Arts Ezine Issue 42 Continuous Blocking Drill

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Martial arts Ezine Issue 39 Internal Energy A Rational Explanation and What is Realistic Martial Arts

Martial Arts Ezine 38 King Sejong: Korea's Finest Ruler

Traditional Martial Arts Martial Arts Ezine 37

Martial Arts Ezine Issue 36 Vital Areas
Understanding and Applying the Art: Martial-Arts-Theory Martial Arts Ezine Issue 35

FIGHTER'S FACT BOOK: Over 400 Concepts, Techniques and Drills to Make You a Better Fighter Martial Arts Ezine Issue 34

Martial Arts Sensitivity Drills Seeing Without Sight Martial Arts Ezine Issue 33

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Shower Power Martial Arts Quick Training Methods for Martial Artists with No Time for Martial Art Training

Admiral Yi Sun-shin A Historical Warrior

Training Your Unwilling Spouse in Realistic Martial Arts


Modern Teaching Methods of an Ancient Art, A Humble Courtesy to All Martial Arts Instructors


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