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Monday, July 24, 2006


A special event is arriving shortly to my esteemed city and with it will come a certain community in their thousands. They have a significant reputation for raising hell, stealing and fighting down to the last one standing. It's time to talk technique.

I'm big, not as big as I used to be but big. Broad, solid and very ugly. This season I've gotten my speed back and can dance round most things thrown at me. This is what I do and I'm good enough at it to still be doing the job 7 years after thinking, without a clue about the actual reality of doing the job, it would be a good idea.

This commuity that are appearing in town are easily spotted if you know them. Physically they're small, wiry and very fast. When it comes to going toe-to-toe they do punch hard, fast, accurately and don't pay any regard to size and strength when they wade in. They do however keep it fairly clean. When the inevitable happens and we have to reject, rather than the unfortunate who have to eject, these folk it's worth considering the technique we use.

In some sparring I've been doing lately we've been trying a few methods. One of us spars light, fast and clean, the other tries to work out how to defeat it. The options are many though we've been trying to cut down the risks. The natural response is to be light, fast and clean but we're all too big and strong for that to be risk free. One option is to go for martial arts, sweeps, kicks and throws, this works fine in the gym but it rarely works in the doorway, with uneven floors, confined spaces and multiple tightly spaced aggressors. Another option is the grapple, suits us with our size and weight, we can pin and lock a problem in a tight space and without any distance between us there's no way to swing a good punch. The drawback to this is the numbers. You can only grapple one at a time and it leaves your back very vulnerable.

The solution I and my friends will be employing is going to depend on the circumstances. With only one silly punter it'll be grappling and throwing depending on situation. In the larger open brawl situations we expect it's gonna be dirty and powerful. Using our weight and strength to finish encounters while we use every tactic we've got to buy us the time to land these heavy blows. I'll not go into specifics but there is an arsenal of techniques in the dirty tricks book which should open enough of an opportunity window to create a positive effect for us.

I've probably given too much away but not enough folk read this for it to get back to me. More sparring coming up and the speed work this season is really paying off. I'm missing some of the bulk I used to enjoy throwing people around with. Oh well can't have everything.

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