Fundamentals Class 19/10/2011


Class began with a warm up as usual: laps around the gym, sprints, burpees, paired push ups, animal walks. Following this, I lectured a bit about the weapon, the context of its use, period clothing, the poste and grips.

This was followed by a simple flow drill for moving between the ligadure. The focus is on flow and proper mechanics. The drill goes like this:

  • The Companion attacks the Player with a hammer fist, like a mandritto dagger blow.
  • The Player covers, applying the ligadura mezana.
  • The Companion taps when pressure is sufficient, followed by attempting the counter.
  • In response to pressure, the Player extricates his arm, controls the wrist and applies an armbar.
  • Again, when pressure is sufficient, the hold is reversed, and the Player transitions to a ligadura soprana.
  • Once the Companion taps again, move into the ligadura di sotto/chiave forte.
  • Repeat.
This was followed by the dagger poste dance, available here:
The first remedy of dagger followed. The base play for this is the cover, and it incorporates its own scholar: the disarm. Proper execution requires an acressere into the attack, breaking his structure and halting it before it has time to develop. Note that you may not have time for this, but the cover is done the same way: attack the Companion’s wrist with your arm. Do not wait passively for it to arrive. First part of the exercise was focused solely on the cover and grab: a fundamental part of the remedies. Students were instructed to cover, then flip the hand and control the wrist. Second part was to have the Companion try to retrieve his dagger while you maintain control. It’s important not to game the results by not committing an attack. Make strong, committed attacks and then remove the arm.
The disarm was practised next. The mechanics involved for this drill were as follows:
  1. Make cover.
  2. Grip wrist.
  3. Pull the wrist back and into your hip, breaking structure.
  4. Volta stabile, passing the hand across the centerline and bringing the dagger into your right hand. This action liberates the dagger through the applied leverage to the dagger blade, as well as giving you a bead on the outside line.
  5. Stab him in the eye.
The ligadura mezana was practised next. What is interesting about this technique is that apart from distance (the disarm occurs at wrist distance, while the ligadura happens from a deeper cover), the mechanics are relatively the same.

  1. Make cover
  2. Due to the deeper cover, either because his attack was deeper or your cover was deeper, rather than circle his wrist to grip it, you will pass your arm into the crook of his elbow, while his wrist lies in your armpit or thereabouts.
  3. To ensure good structure, pull his arm back into your body, joining his arm to your hips and torso.
  4. Perform a volta stabile, setting the Companion up on his toes. Moving forcefully into dente di cinghiale will dislocate the arm.
  5. Maintaining pressure with an upward torsion of the elbow, step slightly along the line formed by his legs, and drive his shoulder into the ground – effectively “folding” him onto himself. This is a bad fall to take, so do so in a controlled manner. If you don’t feel comfortable, take it to unbalancing.
  6. Apply the lock on the ground.
  7. Stab him in the eye.
  8. At step 4, if you perform you may also step into his knee from the side to help the takedown. Please don’t do this to someone you want to continue practising with. Alternatively, performing a tutta volta will bring you alongside your partner. Step behind his knee and along the calf, effecting the takedown.
Next week will be a review and continuation of these plays before moving to the third remedy master.