The responsibility of power, Latosa Concepts FMA terminology.


I hope ya’ll are doing well. It’s time for another post, which I hope, will give you food for thought. Before I get started there are a few things that need “saying.”

  1. GM Rene Latosa is making the rounds. Make sure you get to one of his seminars if you can.
  2. Congratulations to D.K. and A.N. on the new grades. Well done. Both men were given there grades a while back, but it’s worth saying again.
  3. Remember members and former students  need to let us know if you are coming to the Before Christmas Christmas Party for the club.

Enough of that. Now let’s get down to the nitty gritty. What is power, or for that sake responsibility ? Power can be uncomfortable for many people. I would venture to say/write that power is something that scares many power in many cases. The power and responsibility for our children can be the catalyst for profound change in us. For many of us it’s a scary thing in the beginning. Some people never really are relaxed with it. For some people power is the ability to live ones life without fear.

We have all seen people who don’t want to make a decision. They are just scared of the responsibility of power. Other in turn relish having the power and end up being real pains in bottom for others. In many ways, you can see the different types of people in the election process at the moment. Many younger people would like to just give all the power to the government in the hope that system and the people running it, are good people. Others think that the government should be smaller and less powerfull.

We see the same thing in the gun issue. Many people are not afraid to protect their individual power by way of concealed carry and others can’t stand the idea of the person next to them carrying a concealed weapon. Colin Noir touches on this subject in his introduction to the video below.

I have been lucky enough to help people several times in my life. The power, I have is not a firearm on my hip ( that would mean jail and expulsion from Denmark). The power I have is the my training. I have had many very good instructors who I have learned from. Add to that some life experiences, and I was able to help people at times in my life as well as avoiding violent conflicts, when others could see it would be a hard fight to get what they wanted from me and my family ( ill gotten gains).

That ability / power came from embracing the fact that part of power and responsibility for those in my care means doing what has to be done. In short taking on the responsibility as mine. Training combative sports, martial arts and other defensive system may not be scary for some people. Others feel very frightened by just walking past out little group training with wooden knives. (BTW, we worked on some knife scenario training at Saturday’s training yesterday.) I can tell you from experience that the guy, that an American and a Russian protected from three men with bottles is not upset about the training those two individuals had, or the fact that they were willing to help him. All of the others looking on did not feel like they could help. They were powerless! I was told this by many people who heard what I ( The American ) did. Should we go through life with a feeling of no power? You should ask yourself that. My family always had firearms when I was kid. We were raised with what could happen when one was handled incorrectly. In short I was raised to respect power and understand that I had it as well as my father. My families safety was my responsibility when my father was not home.

We all have to develop power and the responsibility of power. If we don’t, we will never be whole. How can we be good parents unless we have the power to say “no” when our children need to hear that word. Feeling incapable to parent our children means our children will not grow to be responsible, powerfull and truly happy people.

The colleges in the states have become political correct hot beds of late. Part of understanding the power we have is seeing all aspects of it. By not saying or thinking something we are cheating ourselves of the responsibility of power. In shorts we are sheep. Sheep have no power. They enjoy the protection of the sheep dog when needed but are scared by it’s presence when there are no wolves around.

We can’t be powerful, aka responsible when we refuse to do what needs tone done (a self-defense situation) or say what needs to be said ( example of parenting) if we done except the responsibility! I get the fact, that not everybody needs a combative / self-defense instructor like myself. Some people might want a bjj or some other type of instructor. What needs to be understood is not taking on the responsibility for your own and your families safety gives the power to someone else.  You can’t say anything bad about what was done to you if yo have always given your power away to other people.

Btw., if we lived in Texas, my whole family would have firearms training. We are in Denmark, so my firearm has to be my knowledge of FMA and self-defense. The Danish and the American idea of responsibility for ones family are quite different. In one case the  government has all the power ergo has to protect the people as well as it can. In the other case people feel the responsibility for their families protection.  For the Danes this could relate to “bestandshjælp”/ welfare  contra  “A-kassen” / unemployment insurance.

Embracing our power and responsibility can be seen in many ways. I know I have embraced the responsibility for my family’s health and well being instead of going along with the budget based treatments that we might experience in the health care system here in DK.

Escrima and self-defense is just one facit of embracing responsibility and power.

Stay Proactive in Life and Training

CW

 

 

LC Escrima and DK FMA class update and Terminology for January 2016.


LC Escrima and DK FMA class update and Terminology for January 2016.

Latosa Concepts Logo white pict.To start with i hope ya’ll are doing well. It’s been a while since there has been an update for the club and what else is happening in general.

So let’s get started. Starting on the 18th of January class will start at 16:45 to make room for a new wrestling class for kids. We’ll stop training at 18:15. We are still in the grip of winter, so there is no outdoor training training on Saturdays. In other words Monday and Wednesday are the days to get your FMA on.

Regarding the new training time, we’ll have to see how things go. The number of members who train on a more regular basis is limited because of the extra shift work. Aka, terror and security jobs. If It turns out that the new times are a problem for the members, we’ll have to start looking for a new training facility or find another room in Grøndals Center. We’ll give it a chance and see what happens.

Remember that the first month of training, when you become a member, is free.

1 måneds gratis træning selvforsvar københavn

1 måneds gratis træning selvforsvar københavn

A is still well on his way to the next grade. His understanding and ability to use GM Latosa’s basic box is growing. A new members, J has started and done well. He should pick up the skills needed for the 1st grade quickly. N is doing well with the 2 stick training and the progression of the 1 stick skills for other grades.

With all that said,we are working on sparring drills and strike training once again. We’ll see what the next pet project and theme for training will be. Before Christmas, my pet project was focus and intent with capital letters. The kettlebells will make a return soon. That much is certain.

GM Rene Latosa is once again booking his calendar for future. So, with that said have a look at his FB page … FB Link to see where he will be.

That’s all the practical stuff. So let’s talk about Terminology and why we are focusing on sparring drills at the moment. The basic sparring drill for the 2nd is an excellent place to start. When we look at the reasons for a planned sparring drill, we can talk/write about the benefit of moving from a counter strike mind set to an attacking mind set. Looking at mind set and the mental states we experience when switching between the role of Bad Guy and Good Guy, we learn to be more mentally elastic. One way to look at it is that we are not easily knocked from our ability to adapt. At least if we have learned that lesson from the planned sparring drills.

Escrima træning i københavn med Dansk fma 1What else can we learn from a planned sparring drill? To start with the drill the men work on for the second grade alternates attacks. Both persons start with a #5 ( low stab),they do a # 1 or # 2 strike, a #3 strike and a high #4 strike. One subject to work on is the ability to flow from one start position to a counter attack or attack (depending on the role) and learning to believe in the attack and move on. Many people like to stop mid-stream and check to see if they did it (what ever it may be) correctly. As we progress with the sparring drills we need to get away from checking to see if something worked and just get on with the next strike. looking down at the #5 attack is and example of this. I teach people to see everything and not focus on the stick, punch or knife. There many other self-defense skills that can be adjusted while working on planned sparring drills.

We can do the same drill with 2 sticks and or a  mix of 1 stick and 2 sticks or any other combo. This could be knife vs stick, or palm stick vs 2 sticks. You get the Idea. N is working on the next level of 2 stick training as I wrote earlier. He has the chance to mix differing attacks with the 2 sticks into the mix. This is one way to work on what some systems call sinawali drills…. Hitting in specific patterns. Because he ( N ) knows what is coming next, he can relax mentally and focus on starting his counter strike from a new start position and so on.

Some of the best sparring drills I have worked on were some routines my old instructor put together. Master Lars kept us on our toes when we did them. I am looking forward to seeing my students at DK FMA work on some of the same drills.

Here’s a rant while on the subject. We all need to recognise where we get our knowledgeLatosa Concepts Escrima. Training, seminars and friends past and present from. Some instructors don’t do this! GM Latosa has always been my guiding light. With that said the man who kept me on the path was Master Lars. We all evolve and learn in different ways. We should never be too proud, angry, or just full of our selves to not give credit where it is due. Remember that when you see krav mega doing escrima / fma or see an instructor with a cv that’s just made up bull poop!

I’ll stop bending your proverbial ear now and let you get on with life. I could go on for ever regarding ways to train sparring drills. Have a great day and send us a message to hear more about trying a class.

Stay Proactive in Life and Training

CW

 

Learning figure-8 strikes before stabbing attacks. Latosa Concepts FMA Terminology


Learning figure-8 strikes before stabbing attacks. Latosa Concepts FMA Terminology.

eskrima free sparring latosa concepts escrimaI was training with J the other day and working on / refreshing some of my tools / abilities while he was working on some new tools. That’s going to be the starting point for this posts. Where it goes from there … who knows!

Before that, I like to ask you if you … if you have done anything for your general mobility, strength and conditioning? I’ll tell you what I did today after sleeping late. Had some coffee and coconut milk, kisses a purity lady then worked out. It was a pull day. That ment deadlifts, bend over row with a rotation, 2 core exercises, a calf exercise and lat pulls. Get off your butt tomorrow morning and do something. 

Getting back to what we worked on when we were training. Timing is a strange thing if you don’t understand the doors it open for you. When you do, it’s just fun. To refresh, the basic timing variations are: preempting, same time variations, and late timing. When we start to mix the timing variations in an attack sequence we get things like half beat attacks. These can be  joint locks, takedowns, strikes, stabs , cuts and more. I did a leg sweep and took J’s second stick from him at one time. Of course, I had one stick at the time.

Any Hoo! At some point in time, I felt the urge to start using my second stick to stab with ( espada y daga style. ) J’s first response was to say … what was that? Jokingly I told him is was an old man cheating! On a serious note, J noticed that it was harder to see, ergo he was caught off guard by it ever time. That’s very true! Stabs are harder to read when we look at the ability to read attacks (baring the ability to read the attackers body movement.) Just the fact that the tip of the weapon may be all you see is enough to scare people. Add to that the fact that a stab with a knife goes deep without much force and you get a new respect. This is one reason that GM Rene Latosa talks a lot about zones and students of his, like myself preach about zones of attack from every mountain we find. It was the same, when I was with Master Lind at WCS. Regardless of what we doing the most effective way to protect your self is to look at attack zones. This could be with the array of FMA weapons / tools, it could be true of the general British type of sword training (sword and buckler is great fun!), and it could be true of the German type sword training.

Back to the order of learning. When we start with the figure-8 system of basic blunt weapon strikes, we learn about reading what the attacker / assailant is attacking us with. With time we learn to read the attacker and move from same time strikes to preemptive strike. Once that ability is bettered to a suitable point, we can start learning to read the stabs. This means we start to understand that stab can stop and start in the same little bitty segment of space and still be just as dangerous.  It’s all about taking baby steps before we walk then run.

You might be thinking that the old man has forgotten about the half beat! He’s gotta be getting old. Nope, I’m not that far gone yet! As we progress from same time strikes, we learn to step on the gas with an extra strike between the beat. Stabs or #5 strikes are an easy way to do that.  With time, we can learn to act and react on one third beats, one quarter beats and so on. It’s all about the flow drills and the speed that are performed to build this ability. This gets back to my last post about flow and so on. Flow is a tool, to learn about and better, your half beat strikes and more.

All this gets into energy and short power and everything starts to interlock, intersect and become universal when we look at FMA and GM Latosa teachings. I’ll let you think about that one for a while. Can you say nexus? We’ll call it the LC Nexus just for kicks! Remember learning to do is becoming aware of what you have learned to do! In this case, learning to use the #5 is learning to be aware of that same attack if an attacker uses it on you.

That’s it, the red meat and green stuff I ate after training is almost gone. It’s time for some more food!

Make sure you see where GM Rene will be teaching while on his travels.

Stay proactive and enjoy life!

CW

GM Latosa Future Seminars


GM Latosa is traveling and giving seminars at the moment. With that said the blog gets a lot of hits from the states. Some of you from the other side of the pond may want to train with the man himself. One of the links you can follow to see more about the subject is here. You can also see a list of seminars on his website. Click on the picture and you will be there ( In the virtual sense at least!).

Have a great day!

Be Proactive in Life and Training

CW

Filipino Martial Arts History


Some people have asked about the Filipino martial arts and what they are as well as some other questions. It’s much easier to answer that question here  so everybody is on the same page. The first link is to The description of the FMA that GM Rene has on his site Click here. The next question is who is GM Latosa. Well here is the link to his history. Click here.

I’ll round it off with this last place you can find some information about the Filipino arts and more. Click here.

That’s it for now and keep the questions coming.

Be Proactive in Life and Training

CW


Latosa Concepts, FMA Terminology 3. Balance.


Latosa Concepts, FMA Terminology 3. Balance.

As you have seen with the previous two entries for Latosa Concepts, FMA Terminology, I have written about subjects that were relevant at the moment. With this entry we will be getting back to basics.

Balance is required to do almost anything. The question is what is balance.  Before getting into the martial arts aspect of it we will start with the bare basics of balance. While writing this, I am standing on a balance board at the desk. How am I physically able to do that. To start with my body had to learn how to cope with gravity and it’s own weight. If we look at a baby that has to learn how to sit up and then stand up. The muscles in our body have to learn how to time what could be called a tug-of-war between the two sides of the body. (we are sticking with the front and back side of the body to keep it simple). If one side is too strong we fall that way. We also need core structure to hold us up and function as a base for the rest to work off of.

How does this pertain to martial arts? The same process is happening the whole time we are trying to stand solidly against an attack or while performing an attack or some other movement. A simplified example could be when comparing a baby learning to sit up and myself writing at the desk while standing on a balance board.

A beginner in Filipino Martial Arts will have to learn how to find their balance in simple situations to start with. This will have to do with how and where to have place their weapons while in a relaxed and ready state as well as in an attack or movement. From there the next job will be to learn how not to fall out of the position while under pressure from one or more attackers. As well as the physical act of standing and coping with attacks and adjustments we have to look at developing the Power Mechanisms that we use to generate and absorb / deflect / destroy an attackers power.

This brings us to finding a balance regarding our mental energy. When we are in a state of arousal our nervous system reacts to this. Adrenaline kicks in and parts of our nervous system shuts down taking certain motor skill with it as well as many other handy tools we could use in a fight. By learning to relax at moments we choose, we increase our ability to act and react in the best possible way.  The ability to explode with power and intensity then relax a moment afterwards has to be trained over time. We are talking about training a mental balance. To get back to the first example we  used, we have to cope and adjust. Instead of gravity it is the adrenaline rush and other effects we are coping with.

You know what’s coming now…. What else? The last thing I’ll write about is the ability to balance our exertion of energy and which power mechanisms we use according to our surroundings and the tools we are using. In other words Transition. This has to do with environmental balance and environmental training. I remember when I trained with GM Latosa in California. The first thing he did was put me on loose gravel because he knew what kind of power and speed I was capable of. On top of that he had me on the balls of my feet (both of them). I had to adjust quickly. What happened? Instead of using a pushing back leg as a main power mechanism, dropping power took over. Once again this adjustment was an act of balancing my environment with my movements.

If you want to physically train your balance while working on general strength and condition, then you need to work on complex exercises. What I did Sunday was a good example. Two of the exercises:

1. Burpee, sumo dead lift, curl performed in an explosive movement.

2. Landmine one arm deep squat, stand and rotate to ball of back foot, perform an over head press. Once again this is a an explosive movement.

3. Kettlebell and sandbag training are always good because you are working with asymmetrical forces and complex movements.

As usual I could go on for a while so I’ll just stop here so your ear/eyes are not bent too much. Keep the questions coming and keep an eye out for the next terminology post. Ya’ll have a great holiday.

Time to get off the balance board.

Be Proactive in Life and Training

CW

Latosa Concepts, FMA Terminology 2. Transition


Latosa Concepts, FMA Terminology 2. Transition

For the Latosa Concepts, FMA Terminology this time, I will be focusing on transition. Transition is many things depending on your level of training and understanding. The same can be said for many of the other concepts that govern Grand Master Latosa’s teachings.

In basic terms, transition builds on the understanding / use of the other concepts. This understanding enables a person to defend themself using a stick, bladed weapon, an improvised weapon and defend one self unarmed. Transition is the tool that connects how a PR 24 ( side handle or tongfa) is used in a much the same way that unarmed defenses are executed.

If we look at the tactical or military use of the word transition, we are talking about the act of switching from the AR to a handgun to a knife and then to unarmed defense and attacks quickly and fluidly. This also is a definition that is part of the Latosa Concepts Terminology. Once it is possible to use the different weapons the goal is to do it fluidly without having to change the governing concepts and basic movement patterns. An example of this could be an unarmed person (Good Guy) defending them self against a blunt weapon attack and that person (GG) gaining control of the weapon in order to help with defense against a second attacker / assailant (Bad Guy). efficiency comes from following the same concepts regardless of the weapon.

Where do we go from here? … you might ask. The next step is to be able to use a staff or a long blunt weapon as though it were a sword and reverse. Using a machete as though it were a blunt weapon during a certain phase of an attack or counter attack could be an example. To take it even farther, we could look at the ability to use the striking power to push or do takedowns and possibly control techniques. Once again the goal is to do it fluidly so an elbow strike is part of a counter attack using a knife. Again we should not switch defense systems to do the elbow strike and then go back to bladed weapons thought patterns directly afterwards. The elbow strike has to be done within the parameters of the of system. In This case, the teachings of Grand Master Rene Latosa.

There are many examples of transition. I love using a pr 24 as though it were a dagger. There was a time when I was crazy about rapper and dagger training. The PR 24 can be used as a blunt dagger that traps the weapon as well as functioning as a shield built onto my arm or a stabbing tool when held in a different way. Just to top it off there are many ways to control a person with it. It is actually a shame that it has the bad reputation that was created by the Rodney King case. Many agencies refuse to use because of this one fact.

I’ll ask you once again, What now? Well have you learned to think like a lefty? Being able to transition from a right-handed thought pattern to a left-handed thought pattern is a fantastic tool.

I could go on and on, There are other example of transition but I will stop here. You get the idea of what it’s all about. Transition is all about being consistent regarding the governing concepts no matter what weapon is being used. Once again this could range from unarmed counters and attacks to improvised weapon/tools to the ability to use the striking power od the Filipino Martial Arts to do take downs and control techniques.

That’s it for now, Stay away from the flashy techniques when training real self-defense and have a great day.

As always questions are welcome. Text, email, or write on the blog.

Be Proactive in Life and Training

CW


What is Latosa Concepts?


What is Latosa Concepts?

Through out the years in which I taught the Filipino Martial Arts (FMA/ Escrima) with WT Scand. and via Security Concepts at the police club on Artillerivej in Copenhagen, I have continued to evolve the situations in which the FMA are taught in Denmark. Stress training, environmental training, power seminars and other subjects are some examples. Latosa Concepts is the result of this evolution.

Latosa Concepts is based largely on the dynamic teachings of Grand Master Rene Latosa. As well as being a stand alone system, LC also works well as a supplement to other martial arts because of the realistic view of weapons. Realistic, logical, and dynamic solutions to self-defense are the key. Add to that the fact that all attackers are assumed to have a weapon and it becomes even more universal.

Some of the terms that are used during workshops and classes are buffer zone, power mechanisms, dynamics and the concepts that GM Rene Latosa has combined and refined to create his special brand of Filipino Martial Arts. Speed, Timing, distance and transition are but a few of the guide line and tools Latosa Concepts follows / uses.

What situations are trained in Latosa Concepts?

After the basic mechanics of moving and some of the mental aspects of Filipino Martial Arts are developed, you will learn about blunt weapon defense, bladed/edge weapon dangers, unarmed application including take downs, and the use of longer weapons. Add to that a percentage of training is based on some of the themes mentioned: Environmental Training, Power Training, etc., and you will have a complete package.

Be Proactive In Life and Training

CW