Eclectic Self Protection (ESP) - North London Martial Arts & Self Defence
May 4 Week Self Defence Course 2019
The Crouch End Self Defence course was held by the Eclectic Self Protection Association (ESPA) was held in May 2019 at Hornsey Town Hall in Crouch End. As with all of our ESP courses a national martketing campaign was released and we had a very good turnout both male and female from aged 12years and up. We had an equal amount of male and female, with a black belt from another Karate Association, and someone who was graded in Ju Jitsu eleswhere. This was the 52nd course to be run by the ESPA with in the north london community.
The course began with a student signup, meet and greet, name teaser exercise and a general talk of what we were going to cover. The 1st session commenced with a warm up and full body stretch. We introduced our preparotory striking techniques from Level 1 Syllsabus including pre-emptive striking off the 'eclectically adapted fence concepts' on both sides of the body with basic striking combinations using the hook punch, the elbow, front kick and thai kick. Emphasis was made on using verbal sly deceptive dialogue and questions at a basic level such as 'have you got the time? / have you got any spare change?' to initiate a window of opportunity for pre-emption. We did this stationary before moving on to pads and impact equipment.
Students were encouraged to line up with me holding the kick shield and executive 1st - 10 solid palm strikes followed by a defencive push and 2 front kicks. Second we drilled 5 solid low thai kicks off both sides followed by 2 front kicks. Students were encourages to develop their explosive power.
Straight after we did 5 minutes of mini circuit based training including press-ups, squats and leg raises.
With students being full warm and mentally and physically aroused we moved on to basic choke releases fron the front, rear and side with 2 variations on each. Details were given about choking time windows and how to naturally and aggressively defend against them.
Next we looked at the 'cover and smother defence' which I had learnt off Dave Turton at a seminar years ago. I have 'eclectically adapted this technique' now using Korean based alterations eg stamping on the ankle, thigh, groin and applying direct knee pressure into the jaw line structure / temple bone and then exiting the situation immediately, and evading to a 'safe zone'. We did this at 'walking pace' and went into details about twisting the attackers head and sweeping their legs whilst taking them down safely to the floor. I have had great feed back teaching my variations of this technique at various courses over the years by students.
In addition, we looked at 2 defence variations of being in a 'street based head lock' from the Level 2 syllabus. I taught the old classic Krav Maga variation which can work but in some circumstances ecspecially against bigger and more experienced practitioners can be insufficient to use. I then taught variation 2 with plantation and stand up grappling with emphasis to come through the attackers forearms use leverage by forcing the head up, gouging towards the face, take the attacker down and stamp on the attakers ankle. This i call the 'eclectic modern headlock defence'. A breif discussion was made on the advantages and disadvantages of both variations, with the 2nd variation the preferred method.
Towards the end of the session we looked at a basic ground position with the attacker pushing you on the floor and then trying to get on top. I taught students how to body launch the attacker off you as they make entry into mount position using correct 'sports science'.
We then did 2 minutes of 'free-directional striking' off the 'Eclectic Match Fighting Stance' using only techniques from the beginnig of the session in combination formats moving around the hall.
The session finalised with star jumps, squats, cool down developmental strateching. 3 minute of meditation on this class only concluded the session.
After the normal standard warm up and preperatory stretches we went back over the basic pre-emptive strikes off the 'fence' but this time going over in detail about the principles of power generation, and slight variations of how to window into pre-emption. The same techniques that were covered in the first session were used again. We then looked at 'eclectic match fighting stance' and i taught the basic striking techniques that we did at the end of last session in combinations standing on the spot. We looked at the basic lead/reverse punch followed by the lead/reverse hooking punch, and front kick/low thai kick, and low thai/low thai kick. Students were encouraged to alternate against different target areas of the attackers body and use 'full body action'. I've taught these types of kickboxing techniques for years and years, and students always seem to like this type of striking work.
Shield work was again introduced with students doing 6 sets of lead/reverse hook / slap as fast as they could followed by the offensive push. Second we did 10 palm heel strikes, and 5 low thai kicks off both sides into the shield.
Students were then partner up and we looked at the differences between the 'offensive' and 'defensive push' using power talking. Students were encouraged to practice off both sides of the body and use 'body shifting'.
We moved on into 'how to parry' before applying 2 arm lock variations. With the arm locks we went into detail about snaking, how to do figure 4, how to dominate the attacker, and subject to 'tap'. I also went into detail about how to apply these 2 types of lock against bigger opponents using simple principles such as stamping on the foot, kicking the back of the achillies tendon, and driving the elbow into the shoulder to drop the attackers height before applying the lock.
Short mini intensive fitness exercises were drilled so students were getting a workout.
We went onto the ground work and looked at attacker choking 'in guard' from Level 2 Syllabus. Emphasis was made on eye gouging the face and 'eclectically swording' into the juggular knotch, hooking one of the attackers leg and then shifting them off at a 45 degree angle, and following up into mount. Staying with the same defence we went into detail about how to apply and 'eclectic modern arm bar' on the ground with emphasis on locking up the attackers arms with the feet on oneside, grabbing the attackers wrist and forearm and twisting whilst pushing hips up at a 45 degree angle, and 'coiling like an anaconda'. Students practiced against with different parnters of all shapes and sizes for a feel of how both technique and size and strength do matter!.
We then re-warmed back up and looked at how to get up safefy from the floor in a horizontal format with good body action. Once comfortable with their technique students drilled this 15 times on left and right. Statying with the same technique we looked at how to make an attachment to the attacker and strike pre-emptively as you get up and continue moving fowards aggressively making impact agaisnt pads.
To warm and cool down we did kicking from the floor using the side kick. Students divided into pairs with one on the floor in side position and the other moving around in a circular format whislt the other continnously stikes for 1 minute, and then they change rolls.
Students were again paired up and did partner work using kickboxing based strecthing drills eg one person standing and holding the leg, whilst the other pushes down with the leg on their partners shoulders and then changes.
The session concluded with 5 minutes of meditation we visualization exercsies for mental refinnement.
After a 12 minute warm up we went straight into Levels 2 to 5 striking techniques off 'match fighting stance'. We looked at both the 'snapping' and 'swinging' backfists, front kick and back kick to all sesctions of the body, back kick and rear arm knife hand, and also the inverse side kick which im known for. We went back over the prinicples of power genration, and some details about sports science of the human body in relastion to 'fast, effective and dynamic' self defence training.
Students were rowed up with one side holding pads for the others to strike. We looked at the slap against the side of the face, and the ear with the differences between both and what would be better to use. All students did 25 sides with the empasis on 'engaging the attackers mind' and developinng explosive power.
In addition, we drilled a fitness and striking exercise using squats followed by front kick on both sides of the body against pads.
We also did some linear striking work from the Level 4 Syllabus using the 'flinch reponse' palm heel strike drill with emphasis on how to use body weight as an advantage and to keep moving fowards into the attacker, and then evade to safety. Students liked this particualr drill.
Moving swiftly on, we looked at wrist releases from level 1. All basic releases left to right, right to left, one on one, two on one and two on two. These are very simple and dead eay to pick up.
Back on the ground like the first 2 sessions we went into detail about how to apply a 'key lock' from the Level 7 Syllabus. We looked at how to be in side mount and then go into side control and stike before actually putting the lock on. I did a full detailed demonstration on how to put it one effectivelly explaining on how to exhaust the opponent whilest being in side amout and the details about using figure of 4, forearms being horizontal, using the anti-clockwise theory and 'painting like a brush'. I have always had great feeback teaching this technique. So students could understand how to feel if their partner was executing it right, I went round and individually applied it on them with self control. We spent a majority of the session looking at this particular technque to ensure everyone knew how to do it correctly.
I go the students to stand back up and we did a loop-holing exercise for mental stimulation, and to improve the students confidence, assertiveness, awareness and self-assurance.
We did some free-directional string work with combinations.
Following this we did a balancing and stretching exercise which was held for 1 minute on both sides.
As with the previous sessions we concluded with 5 minute of meditation for relaxation.
Following a warm up we proceed with some boxing combinations 'off match fighting stance' from level 4. We looked at the lead/reverse punch, upset punch and horizontal hook. Second we looked at the lead/reverse punch, 45 degree angle punch and rear arm hook. Third we looked at twin lead, rear arm punch and uppercut.
I moved on to teaching the thai clinch using gabel grip, pre-emptively knee striking and then relocating the attacker to a different position and then following up again with knees and inner elbow strike.
Self defence techniques against a two handing clothing grab was drilled. We looked at two variations. Variation 1 was grabbing the attackers foearm, eye gouging before attacking the juggular knotch, and then taking down by moving fowards whilsts steppig on the attackers foot. Variation 2 - my 'eclectic favourite', used the upset punch, snaking the arm applying a standing upright shoulder lock, attacking the masteroid gap, following up with knee strikes and then taking the attacker down to the floor, and evading to a safe zone.
The remaining 50% of the session looked at 2 knife threats and one knife attack. We looked at attacker threatening with the knife in front towards the cente. Students were taught to use the basic fence and dilaguoe routine before grabbing the attackers wrist, kicking and then executing a wrist throw with self control, and then proceeding with using the wrist and arm smash when the attacker is down on the floor, taking the knife and escaping to safety whilst mainintaing awareness. The second knife thrat we looked at was attacker behind, one hand on shoulder and blade under throat. Again complying with the attacker was stressed before using physical tools. The fence and deceptive dialogue was explained and to act on suprise by grabbing the attackers wrist and knife hand, striking the groin at least twice, moving side on to the attacker with two hand control and taking the attacker down and applying knee pressure, and running to safety. Third we looked at personal defence against an assailant attacking towards the gut with a recoil. Knife hand defence with simultaneous striking was used, followed up by using the 'eclectic double arm scoop' (to stop recoil), and pre-emptively kneeing into the groin, sternum area and draw backwards keeping control of the attackers knife hand, and securing the attacker whilst in sitting knee position, before evading to safety.
Before teaching these knife defences I gave a breif talk about treating rubber knives as real blades, complying with the attacker, only resorting to physical action if you really have to, the types of situations they would happen in, and the ESP Knife Self Protection and Personal Secuirty Model.
Before concluding the session we did 90 seconnds of holding a squat with a 90 degree angle in the knee joint and alpha omegas.
The last part finished with breathing, concentration and stretching exercises and meditation.
Lots of the people who attended this course made some great comments about what they learnt and how i taught. To see our reviews please use this link: http://eclecticselfprotection.com/reviews-.php
Thanks to all thoses who attended!
Written by Luke James May 2019