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 Post subject: Belegarth forms?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 10:33 am 
Monkey
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I have been considering this for awhile now because i practice other martial arts out side of belegarth. Now one of the first things anyone learns in almost all martial arts is the basic forms, which consist of movements pieced together of commno strikes and blocks. Now my idea is, is too piece together basic Belegarth shots and blocks to put together some forms that are belegarth related.

Now Im not the most experienced fighter but I have been around awhile, so I was wandering if anyone else was interested in the implications this could possible bring.

I believe it would be a great way to practice belegarth technique on ones own, as well as a great way to help new fighters practice good technique.

So if anyone else is interested Ill be at spring war and ill probably begin putting some stuff together.

Kiran

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 12:50 pm 
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I'm not gonna be at Spring Wars, but I think it's a fantastic idea, and I think everyone usually has their own methods of how to train people but it'd be great to stockpile that into a regimen for new fighters.

There's a couple drills I do with new fighters to teach them some of the basic motions, usually helps cut down on crazy newb flailing. I'll often pick up a shield and just block as I have them swing at my left leg, left shoulder, and then cross to the right shoulder, it helps them become familiar with the basic shots to throw and gain some control as they're learning to handle a weapon. You can even do that like a Simon Says game for more of a challenge.

The other thing I'll do is have them just parry with a blue weapon, and I'll start slow, alternating left and right and gradually build speed and throw in some other shots, once again gets them used to the motion and helps build battlefield awareness.

The other things I would consider essential though I don't have any particular drills for this would be the hip wrap and shoulder wrap.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 1:28 pm 
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When I'm teaching new people, I use something I picked up from the Filipino martial arts. Assign each attack angle a specific number. Normally it goes like this (assuming you're starting out with the right hand):

1) Swing at about a 45 degree angle toward your opponent's left shoulder.
2) [Cross shot] Mirror image of #1 except to oppoent's right shoulder.
3) Horizontal swing at opponent's left side of the torso.
4) Mirror image of #3 except to right side.
5) Low swing towards opponent's left calf.
6) Mirror image of #5 except opponent's right calf.

The following shots are introduced later:

7) Thrust
8 ) Wrap shot over the shoulder (also known as a scorpion)
9) Horizontal wrap shot around the side (wrap to kidneys/back)
10) Wrap shot to back of thigh/butt

If you think about it, almost all of the attacks a person can do other than wraps and thrusts are some variation (usually in wrist angle) of those 6 basic angles. I have the person develop flowing motions in combos by stringing together the 6 basic angles. So once a person gets comfortable with all of the angles in sequence (if you follow the progression, you'll notice that many of the subsequent shots that follow an arcing path from the previous ones), I'll start calling out number combinations and have the person execute them. As the person progresses, they can string together longer combos. Also, I try to actively make sure the person is keeping their shots at the shoulders and below since that downward shot to the dome seems to be such a popular one when a person is first starting out. Once they are used to those, then I introduce them to the thrust and wrap shots. These shouldn't necessarily be introduced early since a person should have a pretty good grasp of footwork before learning the wraps; you have to close the distance by about a 1/2-full step in order to reach your opponent.

Another one I try to teach is to teach the person how to avoid the shield leg shot either by lifting the leg or by sliding it back.

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Last edited by Kyrian on Mon Apr 02, 2007 1:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 1:37 pm 
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Kyrian wrote:
When I'm teaching new people, I use something I picked up from the Filipino martial arts. Assign each attack angle a specific number. Normally it goes like this (assuming you're starting out with the right hand):

1) Swing at about a 45 degree angle toward your opponent's left shoulder.
2) [Cross shot] Mirror image of #1 except to oppoent's right shoulder.
3) Horizontal swing at opponent's left side of the torso.
4) Mirror image of #3 except to right side.
5) Low swing towards opponent's left calf.
6) Mirror image of #5 except opponent's right calf.

The following shots are introduced later:

7) Thrust
8 ) Wrap shot over the shoulder (also known as a scorpion)
9) Horizontal wrap shot around the side (wrap to kidneys/back)
10) Wrap shot to back of thigh/butt

If you think about it, almost all of the attacks a person can do other than wraps and thrusts are some variation (usually in wrist angle) of those 6 basic angles. I have the person develop flowing motions in combo by stringing together the 6 basic angles. So once a person gets comfortable with all of the angles in sequence (if you follow the progression, you'll notice that many of the subsequent shots that follow an arcing path from the previous ones), I'll start calling out number combinations and have the person execute them. As the person progresses, they can string together longer combos. Also, I try to actively make sure the person is keeping their shots at the shoulders and below since that downward shot to the dome seems to be such a popular one when a person is first starting out. Once they are used to those, then I introduce them to the thrust and wrap shots. These shouldn't necessarily be introduced early since a person should have a pretty good grasp of footwork before learning the wraps; you have to close the distance by about a 1/2-full step in order to reach your opponent.

Another one I try to teach is to teach the person how to avoid the shield leg shot either by lifting the leg or by sliding it back.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 1:51 pm 
Monkey
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Kryian that was perfect it is exacly what I am talking about. I think what goal know will be to use your method and odd on to it. In essence almsot turn many aspects of Belegarth into a form. However, I will of course not take it to far, because in this sport creativity is of the ut-most importance. However there are several concrete themes that persistently appear in almost all styles of fighting. So if anyone is still up for it, I would like to meet at spring wars and discuss excersises and forms that work well, and possible put them into writing and practice. I dont at all wish to formalize belegarth but I wish to compile of list of successful skills that can be used as examples and what not.

Thanks again Kyrian for a great list and place to begin. I really wish to ellaborate on what you have done already. So please Anyone who is willing I am looking for all the help and guidance I can get. Thanks again,
Kiran

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2007 1:54 pm 
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I too have studied the philipino arts and came up with a simular system. I use the same 6 strikes plus two more. #7 is an upward angled attack to the opponents left side, #8 is the same but on the right.

I also explain there are 4 basic strike types. Whipping, hacking, bouncing and wrapping. I then created 4 basic forms, each with 4 movements consisting of 3-5 attacks. Each for is a bit more complex than the last and introduces the fighter to the concepts of shield kicking, shield rips and punches, retracting defense and shield reversals. The ideas of economy of motion and off-angling are also highly integrated into the system.

Having a system is highly effective when teaching someone totally new to the sport and shaping up those who have experience as well.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 5:57 pm 
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Soo Ma Tai wrote:
Whipping, hacking, bouncing...


Could you elaborate more on what "bouncing" is? Is that using the rebound energy of a shot, say off a shield, to redirect the weapon in a different direction?

On another tangent...

Another concept I think might be worth discussing is power generation and use. If anyone has fought in the SCA, the heavy fighters stress utilizing the hips as the starting point for developing shot power. It may seem somewhat counterintuitive since our weapons are considerably lighter. However, it can be a benefit to fighters who have difficulty generating sufficient power from their upper-body alone.

Power generation:
1) Wrist only--often insufficient for a good hit. However, can be integrated into a swing to provide more "oomph" at the point of contact.
2) Arm and wrist--Some fighters possess sufficient arm strength to swing a weapon effectively with only arm and wrist power.
3) Back, chest, arm, and wrist--Utilizes larger muscle groups for addtional power. Less exertion required by the smaller muscles of the arm. The arm and wrist direct the shot, not necessarily generate the power.
4) Full body (feet, legs, hips, upper body, arm, wrist)--Generates the most power and is generally more efficient than using only the upper body. Shot generation can start in the feet, work its way up the body and end with a pivot on the ball of the foot or can start from the hips with the feet planted.

Power use:
1) Low power-->high speed. Used for precise, accurate shots.
2) Medium power-->medium speed. General purpose attacks.
3) High power-->low speed. Used to blow through defenses.

One other concept would be rhythm. I remember when I went to my first Rag (IX), I fought against a Shindar (I can't remember his name now.) who taught me about changing speeds in your combinations. If you throw all your shots at exactly the same speed, then your opponent can predict when the next shot will come. If you throw a slow shot, then a couple of fast ones, and then a medium-speed shot, you'll keep your opponent guessing as to how fast he or she should react. If he reacts too quickly to a slow shot and ends up creating an opening, you may be able to redirect the shot mid-attack to an unprotected area.

When I'm training someone, I stress control first--put the weapon exactly where you want it to go. Speed and power will come later. What kinds of accuracy and control drills do people use?

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Last edited by Kyrian on Mon Apr 16, 2007 7:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 7:22 pm 
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Kyrian wrote:

4) Full body (hips, upper body, arm, wrist)--Generates the most power and is generally more efficient than using only the upper body.


And FEET! If you keep your feet planted, and turn your hips, it's considerably different from rotating your hips with a swing, and following through by pivoting on ball of your foot.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 7:22 pm 
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Kyrian wrote:
When I'm teaching new people, I use something I picked up from the Filipino martial arts. Assign each attack angle a specific number. Normally it goes like this (assuming you're starting out with the right hand):

1) Swing at about a 45 degree angle toward your opponent's left shoulder.
2) [Cross shot] Mirror image of #1 except to oppoent's right shoulder.
3) Horizontal swing at opponent's left side of the torso.
4) Mirror image of #3 except to right side.
5) Low swing towards opponent's left calf.
6) Mirror image of #5 except opponent's right calf.

The following shots are introduced later:

7) Thrust
8 ) Wrap shot over the shoulder (also known as a scorpion)
9) Horizontal wrap shot around the side (wrap to kidneys/back)
10) Wrap shot to back of thigh/butt

If you think about it, almost all of the attacks a person can do other than wraps and thrusts are some variation (usually in wrist angle) of those 6 basic angles. I have the person develop flowing motions in combos by stringing together the 6 basic angles. So once a person gets comfortable with all of the angles in sequence (if you follow the progression, you'll notice that many of the subsequent shots that follow an arcing path from the previous ones), I'll start calling out number combinations and have the person execute them. As the person progresses, they can string together longer combos. Also, I try to actively make sure the person is keeping their shots at the shoulders and below since that downward shot to the dome seems to be such a popular one when a person is first starting out. Once they are used to those, then I introduce them to the thrust and wrap shots. These shouldn't necessarily be introduced early since a person should have a pretty good grasp of footwork before learning the wraps; you have to close the distance by about a 1/2-full step in order to reach your opponent.

Another one I try to teach is to teach the person how to avoid the shield leg shot either by lifting the leg or by sliding it back.



My sister had asked that Zenith and I train her a bit before she got back into fighting, because though she had been in/around Belegarth for about the same amount of time as me, she hadn't really picked anything up. So, for about two weeks, we trained her, using a system almost the same as this, and when she made her fighting debut after about 2 years of inaction, she did better than she ever had, and had a lot more fun because of it.

The point of this post is that, even besides just for new people, it could be beneficial to some of the people that have been around for a while as well. I find that teaching people is also a good way for me to realize some of the basic flaws I myself commit, and so I enjoy helping new fighters whenever asked. I believe that a basic rundown of this course (whether you're teaching or being taught) could be helpful to a large number of fighters. Thanks for the useful articulation, Kyrian, I now have a much more structured way to go about training people.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 7:29 pm 
Hero
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Robo-alimar wrote:
Kyrian wrote:

4) Full body (hips, upper body, arm, wrist)--Generates the most power and is generally more efficient than using only the upper body.


And FEET! If you keep your feet planted, and turn your hips, it's considerably different from rotating your hips with a swing, and following through by pivoting on ball of your foot.


Duly noted and added to the list...

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 8:03 pm 
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I typically teach about 4 different basic level strikes. Most of this comes from such a high amount of flail fighting that Avalon does. This is in order that they're taught.

1) On-side shoulder. This is the most basic shot that when it connects leaves the weapon at a 45 degree angle.
2) Off-side shoulder. This is also referred to as the high-cross. It's thrown your start position to your target's weapons shoulder.
3) On-side leg. From your normal position to right above the knee where there is typically no armour.
4) On-side body. A straight horizontal shot straight to where the elbow would fall on the body.

People are told to swing hard and swing fast. Typically fast wins over hard and people don't hit as hard as they could due to improper mechanics of the shot.

Their stance is what I've come to understand a basic horse stance. Shield foot forward, pointed toward your opponent. Sword foot back, at a 45 degree angle, should width apart from the shield foot. Since punch shields are like crack out here, everyone is told to keep their elbow in and shield away from their body (i.e. the distance from elbow to fist).

Sword fighting is a bit different here. I don't see too many wraps, no one except me, throws scorpian whips. Normally the only time I see wraps are when it's a last ditch effort (lost of a arm or something like that). Alot of whipping shots, with emphasis on speed, are thrown.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 6:21 am 
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Yeah, being trained in SCA fighting at a young age, when I had only been doing Dag for like a year or so, I learned and still throw lots of wrap shots and what I call deep wrap shots that use proper (passing steps)footwork and shield work. The latter works pretty well when fighting folks with barndoor-size shields. I also use a longer sword than most, because I've lost a lot of speed and I try to fight well in the transition ranges where a longer weapon has the advantage.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2007 4:56 pm 
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GvK, can you describe one of your deep wrap shots in depth? I always enjoy good tower-shield killers

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2007 8:16 pm 
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Winfang, do you ever do a weapon-foot-forward stance? When I fight, I change my footing a lot, and it seems to work really well. It changes the target area my opponent can hit, and my offensive range increases a lot on the 'on-side' with my sword-foot in front. I've found it very effective for moves that require or benefit from spinning, as well.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 6:28 am 
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What I do versus what I teach are two different things. I will change my stance to have my weapon foot forward to increase my range for my offside body shot. The crux of my fighting revolves around defense, so it's very rare that I switch my stance to goofy footed.

I've stopped with the spinning. It was good for a little bit to learn how it worked and how to block it, but it wasn't practical for me. The one thing I learned about spinning was hide it because if people can read what you're doing you'll just die like a chump.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 5:06 pm 
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this pell work seems to be a good system for striking.
http://www.3wave.com/~csanders/FP_drills_pell.htm

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 5:24 pm 
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I can see a 6 zone system making sense in SCA rules where head shots are legal, but I think a more general 4 (or 5 if you include wraps) target system is more practical for Bel fighting. I see the difference betwen a shoulder/torso shot being negligible; both are kill shots (assuming you don't hit arm in either situation), and there's not a big difference in the mechanics of the swing, whereas there's a more obvious mechanical difference between a shoulder/torso shot and a leg shot. Especially for teaching new fighters, 4 strike zones is pretty self-explanatory, and I don't see the distinction between torso and shoulder being very significant except on certain kinds of fakes to get past a shield.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 11:08 pm 
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I couldn't disagree more. Nailing someones head is less than an inch from hitting their shoulder. Striking a shoulder also requires a completely different set of body mechanics than wrapping someones hip/butt/back or sniping a chicken wing, straight down instead of lateral. In Bel, the shoulder is a primary prone location simply because it's adjacent to the neck and head. With most styles it's not difficult at all to adjust a head strike to target the shoulder. When I used to take the time to train fresh retruits, the shoulder slot was the very first technique we'd work on. Shoulders, butt, and (to a much lesser extent,) legs.

I don't think that practicing kata would be as beneficial as sparring regularly, but it can help to improve and expand your vocabularly. I've always gotten better by hitting people than by hitting a dummy.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 5:35 pm 
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bounce shots are as you described Kyrian.

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