Self-defense training vs bodyguard training video, Latosa Concepts, FMA

Self-defense training vs bodyguard training video, Latosa Concepts, FMA terminology

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Proactive in Life and Training



The Danish FMA and Self-defense Group.

The Danish FMA and Self-defence Group.

Well, we did it. We finished the bylaws for the ( ” forening vedtægter ” ) Danish FMA and Self-Defense Group. We had our meeting and worked out who would be filling which board position and so on. Our little band of friends is now looking for better training facilities, aka a club house or gym to train in and store training equipment. We will be excepting members very soon.

The list of chores is longish but we’ll get there. Dansk FMA go selvforsvars gruppen One such “thing to do” will be a site / web page for the Danish FMA and Self-defence Grp. We’ll see if we use a Facebook page or a page. Regarding the hunt for a place to train and store equipment, we have a pdf flyer. So download it here and send it around to any possible places. This could be a company that has extra warehouse space, and extra office space that is big enough and so on. The city of Gentofte doesn’t want to give us any place to train because we are a bunch of old farts, not young whipper snapper kids! Other sports clubs that have some extra space and any other type of place that we could train and store our equipment in is also welcome.

Membership will be 1050 pr. 3 months, or 400 kr pr single month. There will be the possibility to support our group with a passive membership of 150 kr. pr month. That option will also work for the members who go on a long vacation or what ever it might be. We’ll be getting a bank account very soon for this reason.

The syllabus taught will be the Latosa Concepts Escrima Syllabus MA and I put together, when I had the company a few years back. In short:

  • Grades 1-3 … Single stick, unarmed and palm stick
  • Grades 4-6 … 2 stick, 1 stick, unarmed and palm stick
  • Grades 7- 9 …. Bladed weapons, 2 sticks,1 stick, unarmed and palm stick
  • Grades 10-12 …. All sorts of stuff! Standards will be high!

Members are ready for a grading test when the instructor says they  are ready. How long that takes is up to the member / student. Coming from another system will mean that you have to learn the drills and abilities that match that grade for Latosa Concepts Escrima. This could mean a new member ( w/ a 3rd gr. from another system) has to learn the basic box system as taught by GM Rene Latosa for the 3rd gr. before testing for the 4th. AND all the other stuff leading up to it! “This old fart” plans on continuing to train and build up the abilities I had before my shoulder / collar bone injury. I repeat no short cuts! Only quality!

We need to put our heads together to have some kind of kick off soon. We’ll let you know when we are ready. Until then, heres some of what NH and I did together the other day. This is passing level for the two drills shown ( for the 4th grade) The 2 stick drill is a variation of the HIGH, HIGH, LOW drill. The single stick drill was for training good solid # 2 strikes against harder strikes. In short … reality. When the other drills look just as good and We feel they are burned into his bones, he may test for the 4th Latosa Concepts Escrima gr.

By the way, we were using some heavy rattans. NH’s arms were long and tired when we were finished training. You might say it was a weight lifting session for him. Well done sir! I am looking forward to seeing the other drills go as well. We’ll try to get some clips from the guys training for the 2nd grade next.

Ya’ll have a great day!

Stay Proactive in Life and Training


Latosa Concepts Escrima video. Examples 1

Latosa Concepts Escrima video. Examples

Screen shot 2014-07-27 at 5.14.34 PMCranking an old stiffffff body in to gear can be hard but there is only one way to do it…Get started! As time goes by, we’ll be posting some of what we are doing. Until then, I have posted some old and new clips. Some of what you see in the video is from when N. and I trained at the beach the other day. Other clips are from when more of us  had our sparring day at the beach about a month ago. And yet other clips are from before my shoulder / collar bone injury.

To the men helping me to get back to what I used to be regarding escrima. Thanks men for all the help and thanks for being my training partners. I know it can be painful from time to time. I feel the need for more hitting sit-ups!

Look forward to some more fun and more videos.

Stay Proactive in Life and Training



Mixed training routines with rest and explosion. LC strength and conditioning 5.

 Mixed training routines with rest and explosion. LC strength and conditioning 5.

I make it to Martin Rooney’s weekend seminars every time he comes to Copenhagen. The reasons for this are many. To start with he is a power house of positive energy, then we can start talking about all the knowledge he has and his ability to teach. Finally he walks the walk. As you can see in the video and on the YouTube channel, he works with fighters as well as other sports groups.

When I saw the video below I felt inspired to put this entry up. It made me think about my “stick- aerobics.” The name stick aerobics is a joke even though there is some truth to it. In the past, I have put things together like: box jumps, push ups, hitting sit-ups with hand weights, shadow boxing with hand weights, different bag work unarmed and with sticks. I have even used wt-dummies, side arm draws and weightlifting bars as heavy swords/staffs. The idea is simple, you work on explosive work and power or you work on the long haul. Even if you choose to train the long term burn you should be aware not to beat your self down to where you are training sloppy technique into your system. Remember that you are teaching your nervous system to perform an action again and again. If you teach your body to be tired and sloppy that what you will get. did you know that you can have chronically tired/fatigued nervous system?

Martin likes to build fighters up, you can see that in the video. One of the reasons I feel so inspired by him is the fact that MMA fighters and any other type of martial artist is expected to be a good athlete. That means power work, strength work, body weight work, and much more as well as being good at the art they choose. One way to achieve this is through exercises that are strength and power orientated and still closely related to the sport at hand. You can see some of the examples on the YouTube page TFWarriors1.

One of the reason I believe so much in balanced training is the changes I have experienced by looking at balanced training and do it … walking the walk! A good example is how a shoulder injury did not get better until I looked at the static strength in my shoulder as well as the mobility there.  Working with clients has become easier because of the widened view I have on what balanced is.

Any Hoo, enough about all that. Watch the video and use some rest based training to keep your power powerful, your speed quick and your focus on the end result. As you become better at the given skills you will be able to take shorter and shorter breaks and your power and speed will improve. If you are working on speed with a weapon and a tire then keep the speed up to a certain level at all times.

The last little tip is this: Try to put some actual fight related skills in with a mix of power/speed exercises. Have you ever done fig-8s with dumbbells?

Well do you feel inspired to start mixing things up? Here’s an idea for FMA.

Kung fu people have their wooden dummies and boxers have their speed bags and heavy bags. What do you do as a FMA person? Using training tools such as dummies, tires, heavy bags and so on can be a way to train aspects of self-defense/combative training.

The next question is why use the lifeless training partners? The answer is easy… Because your training partner can’t meet with you that day, you might want to work on some things ( point foot work or triggers possibly ?) without the added stress of a person hitting you in the head, maybe your partner doesn’t like getting hit with to much force, or you might even like to use it as warm up for strength and conditioning like I do. Another possibility when it comes to dummies etc can be speed drills. Using different weight sticks is a good way to work on speed as well.

I’ve seen different possibilities on the web and a few in person. I’ll mention a few and show some pictures which are links to videos.  As I have written before in other blog entries … the techniques and or ways of training are not something I support or not support. They are chosen only for the views of the training dummies / tools.

We will start with the first video which I have put up. It goes back to Stonewall-Shield.  Click Here or watch the video here on the blog.

That was straight forward and easy to understand. Wheels a metal frame and a tire can get you warmed up nicely if you use the require energy. The bag will also supply many possibilities for training alone if you pad your stick, don’t cut into it with real knives or use to much force with trainers.  The next video shows a possibility that someone put together with several tires. A few mods like some elastic cords connected to the bottom (connected to a weight) and some protective gloves could really be fun to work with. Heres the next video/picture link. Once again the personal trainer in me says, make sure you are using something heavy to avoid the vibrations going back to your joints.

In the next one you can see the traditional way with the tire bound to a tree /pole. One, two or three tires would also supply the possibility for more techniques to be trained. But that’s only if you want to, otherwise one is more than enough. Another idea could be to hang some more tires at several different angle around the tree. That would give you a chance to work on footwork etc.

The next version I would like to mention is the cutting pole. I’m still working on how to put one in the yard without the people next door going nuts. A simple pole in the ground supplies a hard object to cut into with real bladed weapons. It gives a little idea of what happens when a knife/etc gets stuck or bounces back in unexpected ways.

Last but not least a very simple version on a rope.

All this brings me to the subject of why do it again. You can work on speed and power and many other aspects of training, but you have to train with partners/classes to be able to defend your self or have a chance at defending yourself. I like to tell people to train with helmets from time to time in order to make sure you are still hitting to target with timing. This can get tricky when you only train with a dummy.

That’s it for now, Keep it real out there.

Be Proactive in Life and Training


From The Vault Escrima videos

I did it! I found some old dvd’s with demo’s and other stuff on them. There were some with other instructors. I’ll try to get a hold of them to make sure it’s OK to post a video with them. Until then I have posted a demo we did for a shoot fighting tournament around 10 years ago (?) There is another music track added to it because I knew YouTube would ban it due to music infringements. That means no cracking sounds from the hickory sticks striking. Sorry about that.

I am still looking for the GM Rene clips I have somewhere. We’ll se if those are the next videos posted. For those of you who notice little details you will see that we have different logo’s on. There is a bit of history there.

When GM Rene stopped working with the Germans, Master Bill stayed with the German org. Steve Tappin and the Scandinavian org. went it’s own way. That is the logo you can see on the tee shirts. Just to finish the story, politics and ego’s got in the way again and there was another split. The Scandinavian org and Tappin stopped working together. That is where Weapons Combat System came into the picture.

After 15+ years of politics I finally came home to where I belong by following the teachings of GM Rene Latosa again. Now I just want to train, teach a little and hopefully get to the states from time to time to get more feed back from GM Rene. OOH and post a few old videos from time to time. What can I say, I must be getting old.

Any HOO! Here’s the video. I’m just tired of all the heavy metal music with the videos right now. Live with it.

Be Proactive in Training and Life


Thoughts on real life self-defense.

Master Bill Newman liked to say that he was very happy with the escrimadors here in Copenhagen many years ago when GM Rene, Master Bill and many others were still part of the same organization. He would also say that we were good because we did not know defeat, you could see that in the nature of our attacks / counter attacks and we never gave up. We refused to accept defeat in any form. That is the essence of real life self-defense. The minute you focus on the possibility of defeat in a given situation, it affects the nature of your responses and actions.

For me it’s about self-defense and combative training. Because of this I have run into the mentality that martial arts is bla bla bla. When I trained at a local karate club there were two factions. There was a sports and “art” side/group and there was a a group that was pretty hardcore. The hardcore types drifted away with time, which made me do the same. I like the idea of discipline and many other things about what people “call” the art today. With that said we have to look at the real life applications and ask our selves if they would work if just one of a variety of factors changed.  Adrenaline and it’s effects on motor skills alone is one of the factors.

When we go back in time to when we were kids, we were tought to use this technique or that one to defend our selves so no one got hurt. We have to be sure we are not controlled by this same set of rules when we learn how to really defend ourselves today. That is the reason I do not teach kids what I teach other people. With that said I do say you will learn more later. I was taught to be the man of the family, and the ugly consequences of it,  if my father never came home from work. It’s a hard burden for a young boy. I would not wish it on anybody else. There were reasons I will not get into here, but there was a reason for what was taught to me. That way of learning changed me for life. Having a girl friend that was raped at one time in her life and another that I suspected was raped reenforced this way of living. Working security has reenforced many thought once again. What I am trying to say/write is that we can hope the world was/is what we wish for, but there are some solid truths that we have to acknowledge.  Regarding this subject you can check out When is there a lethal threat.

All this ties into why the combative arts are not focused on many of the same facets of defense as martial arts. Assumptions that an attacker follows some kind of fair play code are dangerous. Assumptions that we can knock a man out with a single blow are very over stated. Just look back at the beginning of MMA when karate fighters fought  BJJ fighters. It was very hard to get that one all or nothing punch to work. The BJJ guys almost always won because of this.

Getting back to the mind set. I have taught students to train to survive first for quite a while. When they are aware of the dangers of “being nice” and how they risk their own well being, then they can train those applications of techniques if they wish. It is based on a realistic understanding of what can happen. This is also why the teachings of GM Latosa have always been so truthful for me. Good honest hits!

MA, The other instructor for the LC Group, and I can train some nerdy aspects of self-dense, with that said it is not for beginners to train. ( we trained espada y daga yesterday) There is a whole basis of reactions and knowledge that are built up over time. That basis has to be built up before being overly nice / fancy in a self-defense situation is possible. Mental strength in many situations has to be built up in some people and others just have it. Some people can see past the pain they are feeling and focus on damaging you with a vengeance.

What’s funny about this is, If we go back in time martial arts were self-defense. The term means art of war. What happened? I can’t give you all the answers without a looooong winded answer. The art of war contains the will to stop, damage, injure and/or kill an attacker and more.  We have forgotten this. To get a little peek into one western view of it go to Bullet Proof Your Mind.  We are getting back to the earlier post When is there a lethal threat.” 

When it’s all over with and done, each of us has to decide how far we are willing to take  the most realistic aspects of self-defense. If you train enough you can move between the different severities of your response to a situation, but that takes time, experience and ability to think under fire. Many people don’t have that. How many people have said “try to cave my head in to a training partner.”  Not many, I would bet. It’s not pretty, or anything else. It is effective!

As I wrote before I will look through some of the dvd’s soon to post some more From the Vault and Strength and Conditioning videos.

Be Proactive in Life and Training


Interview with GM Rene Latosa

GM Rene posted this on his wall. Click on the picture link.

Enjoy the interview and have a great day.

Be Proactive in life and Training


Latosa Concepts, FMA. Why train with two sticks/weapons?

Latosa Concepts, FMA. Why train with two sticks/weapons?

To start with, I know this is not the eco-friendly list of places to buy food and more. The sun was shining and MA, my training partner, and I got to talking about some Filipino martial arts ideas that he had been reading about. We ended up recording a little video to help people become better at working on two stick training and why they should do it.

Depending on who you are teaching, there can be different ways to get some one to understand and use tools and concepts. Splitting a beat / rhythm and getting past the pattern that will trap you in the end is always one of those subjects that some students pick up and others don’t pick up easily. Double stick training is a good way to make people aware of the beat so they can split it. If your standard figure-8 is closed with out too many open windows your shoulders are going to have to roll with the strikes. Body flow working with footwork will help improve the power you generate.

Here comes the saddening part. There are some instructors, who teach a pattern as a secret weapon. If you are being told this, you are being tricked. The patterns ( be is traditional fig. 8, open 8, heavenly 6, etc. ) are there to teach you other concepts and ideas. Some could be general coordination, the ability to split timing, the ability to prepare the next attack quickly, or the ability to generate power via flow.  A case in point could be how your live hand becomes more effective  through training the traditional fig. 8 with 2 stick. If you are training your fig.-8 correctly, each strike starts as an attack. It may end up being nullified because of a counter strike from your opponent, but it should be performed as a powerful attack. It might be that strike which ends the conflict. When looking at a single weapon or self-defense tool  each counter strike or pre-emptive strike should give you the time to do what you have to, be it a tactical function or just getting the h… out of dodge before the attackers friends decide to assault you.

Any Hoo! Enough of that. We recorded this video to help you get started with your two stick training so you can really train with one stick. Ya’ll have a good day and I hope the sun is shining on you where ever you are.

Be Proactive in life and Training


Latosa Concepts edged weapons training with heavy bag video

I promised to put his video up last night when I was working with power mechanism. The video shows some of the training that can be done with a nok knife and a heavy bag. I recorded the video when I was at Butcherslab in Copenhagen the other day. Once again, thanks for all the mails and messages. Enjoy and have a great day.

Be Proactive in Life and Training


Latosa Concepts power mechanism video 2

Latosa Concepts power mechanism video 2

I got around to putting the next video up. This one show another aspect of power generation for striking power. I will try to put another video up to round the subject off. In This video you can see another way to generate power and speed for weapons training as well as unarmed training and so on.

Ya’ll have a great day

Be Proactive in Life and Training