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Old 30th April 2008, 03:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Systema, Krav Maga and "Guided Chaos"? Making The Singapore Equivalent..

Greetings, mates.

I'm a practitioner of an inherited art (mainly a derivative of Silat and Kung Fu developed by my pirate ancestors) and a novice at scientific boxing. I'm deeply interested in Systema, Krav Maga and "Guided Chaos", though have only had a taste of it while in the Army and with a few acquaintences.

It seems to me that while most martial arts are birthed in Asia, it is in the West where it is refined to not an art, but as a practical tool that actually works when applied in real life situations.

It is my belief that many instructors who teach martial arts there only view "martial arts" as "a way of defending oneself against another".

To me, it is clear that they have never been whacked by 6 people while walking out of a club, or getting robbed by 3 armed people in a back alley. Also, there are just certain techniques that a smaller built person has not much power to execute effectively, or a bigger built person has not the flexibility to perform.


From my experiences both in and out of the ring, outside discotheques being hit by 6 just-out-of-prison guys, in a foreign country being mugged at knifepoint and numerous brawls in and out of the country, it seemed to me at one point in time that either I was not learning enough, or, that I was learning all the wrong things, or that there were just things that I don't know.

After giving it much thought and analysing my fights and other peoples fights, I just thought, "Man, I gotta break loose".

So I tried to ignore (yes, ignore, but not forget) everything I ever learned, forgo all the traditions, say @$% to all the rules laid down in martial arts and see what techniques and moves could survive facing the real world in a real fight.

I mean, traditional arts like karate, aikido, ninjutsu are all good and well, but there's just so much well.. tradition in it that practicality is sometimes lost. There's no honour in a brawl, right? I'm not saying that they're bad. Good for discipline and all, but try fighting 6 guys whose aim is to do you in. Maybe a black belt can survive, but what if you're not one?

Same goes for sports-based martial arts like kickboxing and taekwondo, even boxing. Too many rules. What's stopping a hooligan from kicking your family jewels? The referee? The "sport" mindset is still there, holding you back from hitting foul areas because that's how you trained yourself to be.

Fighting ability is arguable the product of your knowledge, application of it, and training. If you train yourself to fight in a ring-based situation, in a real-life-situation, that is how you'll fight. If you fight like that and facing me in an elevator, I could pommel you right down.


I definitely won't expect a robber to come up at me, execute a bow and then say, "Prepare yourself to get robbed". Then maybe a sexy girl holding up a signboard catwalks around is and a bell chimes, refferee says "Fight!"

What I came up with (or rather, what I have left) after 4 years of delving into this is something that breaks things down to basics, utilising moves and techniques that are heavily tested and assessed for practicality, devastating effect and realism. Among my students (or tryouts as I refer to them), training involves using the Contact Flow, which we formerly dubbed "Slow-Play fighting". Mainly because it is a form of playfighting (punches and strikes are pulled) and even though it is called slow, it isn't really slow. It's just not fast enough to inflict damage. I've learnt long ago that speed + force = power

Tryouts also train to maintain their safety when beset by multiple opponents (2 to 5 opponents), when attacked in a sitting position (on a chair and on the ground), prone position, flat on the ground, knife attacks and sword/parang attacks and numerous other weapon attacks from various angles, stand-up one-on-one fights, in enclosed/small spaces (elevators and stairs work best) and sneak attacks. We also try to work our way around everyday situations which could possible turn into an attack (e.g. a backpacker w/ heavy pack being besotted, tired person taking the lift home from work being robbed, etc).

One of our methods is called "touch and go". It is similar to Krav Maga's "Bursting" technique, but it does not only involve the hands. Blocking/parrying and striking are done simultaneously with any two limbs, then the follows up with one or many devastating moves, applying the primary action, secondary action rule. Why? Because, it's just not realistic to make someone fall with just one strike. It works wonderfully when you have distance and space to move around, but even in confined spaces, the same rules apply.

I've been searching for many arts that could fill just one criteria.

The ability to teach a normal, able bodied person the means to survive a real fight against 5 attackers.

So far, I've only identified Systema, Krav Maga and "Guided Chaos" as the 3 arts which could teach a person that, and NOT require the person to train for long years and be a master or black belt or whatever just to survive the 5 attackers.

The thing is, they're all Western systems. And I do know that the said arts do have a lot of moves similar to karate, kung fu, jujitsu, muay thai, you name it.

So, why don't us asians have something like that?

Perhaps we at Singapore could help start one off.

I do know that there are many "masters" around. Maybe we could get together and mesh somethings up and see what we could come up with? That doesn't sound so bad, does it?

I'll bet some of you don't even know that Singapore has it's share of locally made martial arts.

Seni Silat Gayong and prison-originated Blackwood for instance. (Actually, Singapore Prisons has had quite a few arts that originated there)

So what say you guys? Anyone up there wanna take up this once in a lifetime challenge?

To make a Uniquely Singaporean Defence System?

All we need is a place, the people, the time and a structure to adhere to, which is, to create a practical, reality-based defence system for the everyman. And woman, of course.

What are you waiting for? Join the club!

Can I share something with you guys? I am not trying to patronise you guys or anything, mates but, if it's a good thing, why not share, right?

Around a hundred years ago, my pirate ancestors developed a hybrid form of fighting, a cross of whatever they thought was useful. Silat, kali, kungfu, you name it.

What they came up with relied heavily on the upper body because of the fact that they're always on board ship.

One technique they used, which I find is still applicable today is the use of the elbow joint area not only to strike, but to block and parry as well.

Not just the outside-lower part of the elbow, but the surrounding area on the joint. Kind of like a chicken wing, which is the technique's literal translation from Malay. Using the chicken wing, a strike is blocked and/or redirected/parried upwards or to the outside by opening the "wing" followed by moving into the opponent and striking him down using whatever the hell you feel like doing.

It follows my basic primary action - secondary action rule.
Primary action is the first thing you do to get the job done. Secondary action can be a whole series of whatever you want to do, with the ultimate aim of getting it done.

Maybe you could try the "Chicken Wing" (nope it's not a wrestling move) with some of you friends and give me feedback on it. If you're unclear on how it's done, maybe you could drop me a mail at asfihani.k@gmail.com .

Perhaps we could share thoughts and ideas, or maybe you could clear some of my doubts and theories.

Oh. Another tip: If you're ever beset by a boxing-type guy giving you a flurry or a JKD/Wing Chun type dishing out a straight lead, give the guy an uppercut if you're heavy on honour. If not, just kick his balls. That really works, 'cos at one point, I was the boxing guy.

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