Eskrima (also known as Kali or Arnis) is an incredibly versatile martial art from the Philippines. When training in these arts, you learn a refined sense of effective angles of attack and defense. Initially trained with rattan sticks, the Eskrimador quickly learns that this attack style can be worked with, a knife, a sword, an empty hand, and other objects as well. The versatility of the weapon-based Filipino martial art (FMA) derives from this ability to use whatever tool is at hand for devastatingly effective self-defense.
Your Portland Eskrima training will focus on footwork drills to develop effective evasive movement, conditioning and strength. With dedicated practice, you will notice a significant improvement in your agility and stability. The strike flow patterns are worked offensively and defensively to help sharpen coordination and refine the reflexes. These patterns progress to incorporate trapping and disarming techniques, which are used to eliminate the threat of an opponent’s weapon.
Ultimately, we move into free form sparring, applying everything we have learned in a live situation. These classes are exciting, varied and a lot of fun.
Basic Concepts of Filipino Kali or Eskrima Courses
Training in Eskrima or Kali involves learning simplified moves without spending too much time on flashy techniques. Only skills that can be easily applied in a real-life combat situation are taught. Even the more advanced and intricate techniques are practical and usable in a fight. The art of Eskrima takes years of determination and hard work to understand and execute even the most basic concepts and skill sets.
Eskrima/Kali Training Stances
Our Portland Eskrima/Kali self-defense training starts with learning the stances. The right stance enables a fighter to make agile and effective defensive and offensive maneuvers. Individual stances take years of dedicated practice to master. One needs to learn to do the stance stationary, then while moving, in combinations with other foot work, then with changing rhythms, and in a stressful situation.. Here are some of the basic stances taught at NWFA:
- The forward stance: helps you to strike powerfully and effectively, stay mobile and quickly change to other stances
- The back stance: for defensive moves and launching counter attacks
- The cat stance: for agile movements, space to yield and quick countering
- The horse stance: to powerfully defend against side attacks
- The cross stance: for counter attacking, angling away from the opponent and as a transitional stance
Our expert instructors help you perfect these stances to give you powerful striking ability and make your defense more effective. With every movement learned, the training instructors will evaluate your stances to make sure your foundation is strong through all the motions.
Weapon Training For Self-Defense
Numerous sticks and bladed/blunt weapons are used by the practitioners of Kali, Eskrima or Arnis. At NWFA’s Eskrima martial arts school, our training programs include learning to safely use many of the following weapons:
- Yantok – Also known as baston or garrote, it has a standard length between 24-28 inches
- Largo mano yantok – Similar weapon with the length ranging between 28-36 inches
- Dulo dulo – A four to seven inches palm held short stick that is similar to the Japanese yawara stick
- Bankaw – A six foot long staff
- Wooden dagger – Shaped like a basic round stick about 12-14 inches in length
- Bladed Eskrima weapons such as daga, balasong, karambit, bolo, barang, binikoko, dinahong palay, kris and the kampilan
- Flexible Kali weapons such as sarong, ecut, nunchaku and the bull whip
- Projectile Arnis weapons such as bow & arrow and blowguns (also known as blow tubes or blow pipes)
- Body parts that can be used as weapons include fists, backhand, open palm, knife hand, fingers for clawing and jabbing, forearms, shoulders, elbows, knees, shins, feet and even head
Although body parts are not normally considered to be weapons, proper training and development of skills can certainly change this and prove to be very valuable in a combat situation. One can distract the opponent with the weapon in one hand while actually striking with the other. Learning to use weapons as well as bare hands makes Eskrima martial art so effective.
Contact us today to take a free private Eskrima lesson with an expert instructor in Portland. If you decide to continue your training, we’ll give you the first 30 days free! Call us now at 503-235-3435.