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Messages - maija

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Martial Arts Topics / Re: Secrecy vs. Knowledge wants to be free
« on: February 13, 2009, 11:46:59 AM »
Whilst I was in Europe recently, I took the chance to train with this guy, Mick Coup. Interestingly a question turned up 2 weeks ago on a Q and A forum he moderates. So here is a view on this subject from the other side of the pond -
A guy asked a question about 'target selection for edged weapons'. Here is the reply:
Mick Coup:
"I'm sorry to say that I won't be posting any details that cover such topics mate - it isn't the way I operate.

There's far too much 'offensive knife' training offered in my opinion, and I know for a fact that all the claims of 'positive vetting' and background checks are in the main part nothing but lip service and a token gesture at appearing responsible.

Every year over here, and I'm sure over there as well, there are numerous seminars offered that promise to teach the covert carriage of knives, rapid deployment with all manner of maiming and killing methods, plus the all important 'escape the scene' postvention. For all intents and purposes this could be nothing more than an exercise in training a better criminal - thankfully most of what I've seen is substandard and not even up to scratch with the current crop of teenage knife-wielding thugs found in a Glasgow housing estate! It would even appear that some of these 'instructors' have simply watched 'West Side Story' a few times and gone from there...

Eligibility for such courses? Turn up with the money, maybe book in advance via email - if anyone doesn't believe me I'll point you at the next such event and you'll see for yourself...

I don't subscribe to this level of irresponsibility personally, and have little respect for those that do unfortunately.

Knife usage is something that I teach and offer extensive instruction in, real knife usage at that, not what I refer to as 'knife gymnastics' that is too commonly seen looking good on Youtube - but this is only if you have a justifiable purpose for the subject, and I either know you well or you are a serving member of the military/police - and most importantly, you have already covered the fundamental foundation material, because without this you'll have an accessory - but no vehicle to put it on!"

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Secrecy vs. Knowledge wants to be free
« on: February 08, 2009, 11:03:08 PM »
The impression I got from Sonny was that you had to live with the consequences of your actions whether or not you were ┬┤justified', however this was not what he was talking about when he referred to the 'dark side'.
To him, the dark side was a state of mind; one that feels powerful through doing harm to others, lusts in violence, enjoys inflicting pain or chooses to take life without regret - for money or for fun, or just because one can.
He saw the danger in building skill in a student and what this could potentially do to the ego. The mindset he tried to instill through his method of teaching was clarity and awareness, never power or the glorification of violence.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Secrecy vs. Knowledge wants to be free
« on: February 07, 2009, 05:42:39 AM »
Sonny (Umpad) was very uncomfortable teaching anything from 'the dark side' as he called it. By that he meant material which involved a want, and a wish to do harm, without the necessity to do so. He would very occasionally demonstrate these type of attacks so the student could understand what it felt like to be on the receiving end of it, but he was against it in an of itself.
He was very reclusive as is well known, and interviewed all prospective students, I suspect for the very reasons in this thread. He was also very sensitive to how the training was affecting people and if you were getting obnoxious or cocky had no reservations about cutting you down to size (no pun intended!).
As was pointed out, the offensive and defensive ends are both apparent in the teaching, and you have to see what the 'dark' looks like to be able to learn to deal with it.
Personally I believe the mindset instilled during training and the atmosphere the teacher creates are very important. Sonny was very clear that in training you left your ego at the door and that you respected the time you trained. As he put it 'This is not sport, nor competition. No bullsh#t'.!
As for Youtube etc, there is truly a universe of information out there, but it is something very different to learn froma teacher than it is to learn from a video. As the saying goes, 'information is not knowledge and knowledge is not wisdom'. It's the teachers that are key.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Self Defense with Pistols
« on: January 26, 2009, 06:39:03 PM »
Can't fault his logic.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Movie Fights
« on: January 26, 2009, 06:33:16 PM »
 ".........I AM smiling" !! :lol: :lol: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
That looks brilliant :-)

Martial Arts Topics / Annual Live Cannon Shoot
« on: January 26, 2009, 08:44:09 AM »
A friend just forwarded me this for those of you with a cannon in the garage you've been itching to fire! The public is also welcome to watch.  8-)

" Friends;
Save this date:  Saturday, February 21   This is the 5th US Artillery's
(of the Civil War Reenactment Society) annual LIVE SHOOT.  Cannon owners from all over the state come to the Tulare County foothills to fire their Civil War era reproduction cannons
at various targets and see who's got the best aim!  There is really no official competition, as just watching the reaction of the guns with real ammunition is a lesson in itself.
This is the information we have so far:   It will be held on the Trivoli Ranch here in Tulare County Cutler area) and it's normally a one day thing starting at 9:00 a.m., but there has been talk of possibly allowing us to tent there overnight.  Even if that doesn't happen, it's an all day thing, so if you're traveling from a fair distance, plan to just "hold up" with us here at our place (Exeter, CA - about 25 miles from the site), and make a weekend of it. We have more than an acre to park motorhomes, cannons, etc.  If you have a cannon you want to bring, contact Steve Miller, 5th US Artillery Cmdr (real soon) at: for approval/ instructions/ requirements, etc.
Here's a link to pix from last years shoot!
  Let us hear from you!
 Becki Redwine Enjoy the updated website for the Civil
War Reenactment Society:
! New news.  Be the first to know what is making headlines .

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: January 09, 2009, 10:24:52 AM »
Cool old footage of O-Sensei with Bokken and Bo:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Movie Fights
« on: January 09, 2009, 06:54:45 AM »
That looks awesome!!
Yip Man is a legend .... looking forward to seeing Donnie Yen do some Wing Chun!

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Citizens defend themselves/others.
« on: January 03, 2009, 09:39:01 AM »
That's awesome! I shop there :-o
Yay! even the 'hippies' are fighting back  :mrgreen:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: December 31, 2008, 07:08:51 AM »

Martial Arts Topics / Re: home made equipment
« on: December 29, 2008, 05:36:43 PM »
Thanks guys.
Pretty much all the footage I have is of me training with Sonny. Everybody got a copy of their workouts, and Sonny kept one for himself. We reviewed, and so did he. He said he often didn't know 'what was going to come out', so he liked to have a video to review. It's a long process looking through them now, but I hope to post more stuff as I come across it.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: home made equipment
« on: December 28, 2008, 05:19:43 PM »
Ahhh only 3 months later ..... Finally .... a couple pendulum training clips ...
I couldn't find 'The Frustrator', but here is the 'Half Frustrator'  :lol:
Double Blade training:

Also, another clip, training with the Sandung:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Happy Holidays, whatever your version
« on: December 24, 2008, 05:11:49 PM »
Hauskaa Joulua ja onnellista Uutta Vuotta!!

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Knife Clips
« on: December 24, 2008, 08:19:18 AM »
Your 1st clip illustrates a point that Sonny often made - "Watch out for the other one...."
In the Grandfathers Speak interview he describes an altercation he was involved in. You'll notice he describes targeting both assailants, the one in front of him and the one he knew would be behind him.

And thanks for the other clips ... Michael Jackson is indeed a badass :-D :lol:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Boxing Thread
« on: December 22, 2008, 04:42:54 PM »
Mayweather has very good timing, finds good openings, plays range very well and has great body angles and evasive skills .... In the system of eskrima I study (Visayan Corto Kadena), these skills are what our, so called, 'TippyTappy' drills develop. Perhaps for him also .....?

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Hatton vs. Mayweather
« on: December 15, 2008, 08:50:05 AM »
Ronin said:

I have never and will never be, a fan of "tippy-tappy" pad work.
Regardless of who does it and how great a fighter they may be.
Fact is Mayweather is a freak, he would probably be just as good a boxer if he did pad work on one leg while wearing garters.


Why are you against "Tippy-tappy drills" for boxing?
Why do you think Mayweather spends/wastes time on them?

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Citizens defend themselves/others.
« on: December 15, 2008, 08:46:31 AM »
"Food" for self defense ....?!

Martial Arts Topics / Re: We the unorganized militia
« on: December 13, 2008, 06:47:41 AM »
Food for thought ....
Good, straightforward advice.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: December 11, 2008, 04:28:39 PM »
Sambo demo clip
Very smooth. Nice transitions.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Citizens defend themselves/others.
« on: November 29, 2008, 06:30:13 AM »
Man with candy cane fends off attacker:

"A man using a candy cane lawn ornament fended off a knife-wielding neighbor who had been attacking holiday guests at a Sacramento home.

Police spokesman Sgt. Norm Leong said the man used the 2-foot-tall plastic ornament to subdue the attacker until officers arrived and arrested him.

He said the 49-year-old suspect became intoxicated, went over to a neighbor's home on Thanksgiving and began waving a kitchen knife at people gathered on the lawn. He cut several people's clothing before one of them decided to fight back.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Gary Spiers article
« on: November 26, 2008, 07:00:46 PM »
Actually, Richie Grannon found it and posted it on his site, I just thought it should keep going  :-D

Martial Arts Topics / Gary Spiers article
« on: November 25, 2008, 06:04:42 PM »
Here's a link to an interview by Terry O'Neill with Gary Spiers, from "Fighting Arts" magazine in 1986.
It's long, but well worth the read: Tough upbringing + traditional martial arts training + a lifetime of real life 'encounters' as a doorman and security in Australia and the UK.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: November 15, 2008, 06:27:42 PM »
Eddie Izzard "How to choose a martial art":

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Movie Fights
« on: November 14, 2008, 11:28:22 AM »
I enjoyed "Hero" also. My favorite move is the switch to back grip during the assassination attempt on the Emperor, where 'Broken Sword' pulls the cut at the last moment. I've seen my teacher use that very same move during sparring  8-).

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Umpad Corto-Kadena
« on: November 13, 2008, 03:36:32 PM »
There is a new article about Maestro Sonny Umpad in the Jan 2009 edition of Inside KungFu, the one just out on the news stands.
It was written by Guros Chris Suboreau and Steve Magness.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: What would you like to see from DBMA?
« on: November 09, 2008, 05:48:24 PM »
I like GM's idea alot. That would be awesome! Even for average martial artists too ....

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: November 07, 2008, 04:20:05 PM »
Found this on another forum. Thought it was interesting ....
'The Best of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Street Fighting'

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Being Prepared without Being Paranoid
« on: November 01, 2008, 11:58:12 AM »
OK, so I couldn't resist checking out some of the related clips from the previous one. This one would have perhaps been better in the 'Pre emption and sucker punches' thread, but here it is anyway:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Being Prepared without Being Paranoid
« on: November 01, 2008, 09:06:39 AM »
Bob Spour's DVD "No Doubt No Fear"

This is the 2nd of 3 excerpts. The other 2 are interesting (and funny) also.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: MMA Thread
« on: October 25, 2008, 05:35:34 PM »
Yeah, he always seems to get his leg in the right place for the trip or sweep .....
Seems like taking out the legs is a great thing to be able to pull off, especially if you are smaller, against someone bigger and heavier.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Knife Clips
« on: October 25, 2008, 02:01:16 PM »
Tony: 'Maija, What would you have done if you where red'?

HA HA HA ..... Now that would be telling ....

Martial Arts Topics / Re: MMA Thread
« on: October 25, 2008, 01:56:59 PM »
Apols for posting this if it is already up somewhere. Thought it was interesting.
Lyoto Machida takedown GIFs

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Knife Clips
« on: October 25, 2008, 07:21:56 AM »
Great points Tony, thanks! 8-)
Like you said it is Monday morning quarterbacking, but I think it is useful to watch others spar and fight to see the weaknesses and strengths of different tactics and techniques.
Like you said, quote ".... it seems both guys had some idea of what they where doing", which for me made it a very interesting clip to watch.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Knife Clips
« on: October 24, 2008, 11:00:26 AM »
The fact that this was a duel clearly changes the dynamic of the interaction from that of a 'shanking', where I am assuming the object of the attack is presumed unarmed and unaware. Also in this case it seems that neither party wanted to die, just win - in this case judged by red conceding - which for me, makes this clip particularly interesting.
Red perhaps tried to fake, but "lack of commitment" ? Only because black gave him no opening to go for, as far as I could see.
Also seems like the couple times black actually went for a cut, they were all aimed high (face, upper body). The second time red really had to get his head out of the way which caused the backpedaling to accelerate. The deepening of his stance and the throwing out of a slash to gain range were indeed his ultimate downfall. He left his side totally open by extending forward whilst black was timing him and ready to lunge.
What I'm thinking about as a hypothetical exercise, is if in red's shoes, as it were, how would you fight black?

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Knife Clips
« on: October 24, 2008, 07:46:33 AM »
This is what struck me from watching the video -
Both parties were armed and ready, so neither closes.
Red plays low to keep the most distance between him and black - red is playing defense (fears black?).
Strikes thrown are most, if not all slashes, not pokes (video quality makes it hard to see for sure).
Red throws many cuts. Black extends only 3 times, and only when he thinks he has a target.
Black plays blade close to his body, using weight shift and shuffle to stay out of range.
Each of black's cuts are thrown when red is extended.
Black taunts red to strike by posturing.
This clip shows well that you are open whenever you extend to cut.
Black has higher skill than red.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Knife Clips
« on: October 23, 2008, 03:26:25 PM »
Good find, Tony. Alot to notice there....

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: October 20, 2008, 05:09:38 PM »
Not sure whether I ever thought about putting Mettalica and Tai Chi together before  :lol:, but ....
Tai Chi drills for self defense:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Woof from a FMA noob
« on: October 17, 2008, 05:47:11 PM »
@ Blackwolf 101:
I've traveled only once through South Dakota, and found the area where you grew up to be very interesting and beautiful. It has a very powerful atmosphere.
I think you are right that training Martial Arts can be a most positive experience, especially with a good teacher. The combination of mental, physical and emotional training, along with learning about history, culture and 'human nature' are great tools to take into all walks of life. I wish you the best of luck with your training and teaching.
I still wonder sometimes, at how something that seems so violent, brutal and conflict driven like stick/blade fighting can develop calm, centered, decent human beings .....  weird :? 8-) :lol:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Something big is brewing
« on: October 17, 2008, 01:21:16 PM »
"Ave Maria" LOL!

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: October 17, 2008, 06:59:48 AM »
Zurkhaneh - Persian Martial Arts training:

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Street Weapons
« on: October 11, 2008, 10:22:01 AM »

Martial Arts Topics / Re: home made equipment
« on: October 10, 2008, 06:18:18 PM »
OK, so there is not technically any 'equipment' in this clip, but following on the idea of how to see the "open spaces between the moving objects" ....

With thanks to my training partner and elder brother Kev Baptiste for pointing out how some of Maestro Sonny's ideas appear in Mayweather's boxing.   

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Movie Fights
« on: October 08, 2008, 06:07:19 PM »
I had forgotten about this one - 'Rob Roy' sword fight between Tim Roth and Liam Neeson

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Women fighters at DB Gathering
« on: October 08, 2008, 05:54:26 PM »
If you have a desire and a talent for something, seems that you should go do it regardless of gender.
On the other hand, fighting as spectacle, and fighting for money add a whole other aspect to the thing. It's not a pretty business.
Personally I don't like seeing anyone get pummelled into the ground, either because the other fighter was way superior, or purely due to an ability to endure pain.
Now skill and technique .... THAT'S fun to watch.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: VIDEO CLIPS OF INTEREST
« on: October 08, 2008, 03:51:23 PM »
Awesome clip! Very cool.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: home made equipment
« on: October 08, 2008, 07:04:19 AM »
@ Jogo do Pao
I'll call him - I'm glad one of us labeled our training vids accurately :-D

Martial Arts Topics / Re: home made equipment
« on: October 05, 2008, 12:08:11 PM »
@ Jonobos -
...Success? ...Hmmm, well I guess it would depend on how you define it!  Training with it certainly gave you a great appreciation of how blocking/striking to one side leaves you wide open on the other, and how it's hard to keep track of high, low, left and right at the same time  :-P
It was certainly good at training the eyes to perceive motion, improving the peripheral vision, getting blocks up fast, keeping the feet light and looking for the open space between the moving objects instead of the focusing on the weapons themselves.
Maestro Sonny was all about having an exit aswell as an entry and it was good training for that.

@ Crafty Dog -
I will try to see what I can find, though it is more likely to by my lame ass attempts captured on tape, not his ...though I do remember him demonstrating it ..... If the worst comes to the worst I'll try to get together a clip of us working with it now.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: Kali Tudo Working Examples
« on: October 04, 2008, 01:18:34 PM »
..."Ajarn Chai gave me the cruel idea to tape push pins "tacks" to the heels of the feet to make people stay on their toes.  I have yet to try it but the concept states how important it is to Chai so I myself make sure my students stay "tall" on the balls of the feet. "

LOL! Nice idea!!
Staying on the balls of the feet is key. Couldn't agree with you more.

Martial Arts Topics / Re: home made equipment
« on: October 04, 2008, 01:10:44 PM »
I'm going to have to look harder to see if any footage exists of Maestro Sonny's "Frustrator" in use . Like the one shown, there are 2 sticks hung from a center rope, one at knee and the other at shoulder level. But unlike the one shown, Sonny added blades to the ends and devised a way to connect the sticks to the central rope in such a way that they could spin 360 degrees in opposite directions without twisting the rope up. He also left the low end free so the sticks would swing round more randomly.
The MAIN difference in Sonny's exercises from other versions I've seen is that the practitioner does not stay in front of the sticks. Sonny wanted his students to cross from one side to the other, not just left and right, but stepping through the central point to the other side (trying to get to the back of the opponent). He wanted at least one foot to touch the point directly under the center (or as close as possible) before ending up 180 degrees to where you started. This would sometimes involve stepping over the lower stick, ducking under or fading round the end of the upper stick and of course blocking, redirecting and striking as you went.
...that's why the device got it's name :evil:

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