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The Lateral Redondo
Bag Drill for Stick-fighting
At one time or another I have scored this stroke against every man I have crossed sticks with. It is my best piece or rattan work. However, there are some downsides to it.
For one thing, against a guy employing the Brutal Salsa aggressively, or a man with a good stick check, you only get to score this once per bout.
As a self-defense stroke it is legally problematic because it is likely to kill.
This is a highly visible opening point for FMA competition but does not score with the frequency necessary to win against a hyper-aggressive or sharp defensive fighter. It is nice for lighting up overmatched fighters. I must say that it serves best in stick-and-dagger combat and in gladiatorial sets where you are ‘going for a kill’. If you are doing pure submission stick where you are honor bound to tap in acknowledgement of a stroke that would have finished you in the absence of a headpiece, then it comes into its own there.
So, with the upside and the downside behind us, here is my favorite stroke, one which has scored me KOs against men in hockey helmets.
Setup
The timing of this stroke is all important, because if they know it is coming and are any good you are not going to score. It is primarily a matter of footwork, and can be done without much arm motion. Indeed, the last time I landed this to end a stick-and-dagger bout on 11/17/2012 I kept my elbow pinned to my ribs to catch the countering dagger stab as I ripped this shot to the ear of my opponent’s saber mask.
The Lateral Redondo is a one-step double-stroke, or check-and-stroke, or beat-and-stroke, or feint-and-stroke technique. I do not consider it to be a combination, but a single technique with varying applications. It is best delivered from the Doce Paras competition guard taught by Aaron Seligson. This guard has the stick in the lead, with the stick-hand refused above the lead hip, under cover of the shoulder. The stick is slightly forward and crosses the body to cover the far side of the face with the tip, which is used as a sight. The stroke will not be chambered, but fired directly from the guard.
I like this best as a counter to an entry, which gets you a pass and sometimes a disarm. Using this against the Brutal Salsa is like being the T-Rex against Triceratops in the classic dinosaur battle. If it works you are a genius. If it doesn’t work you’re dead meat.
Footwork
This technique, particularly against taller fighters, is highly dependent on the footwork.
With 60-90% of your weight on your rear foot, slide your lead foot diagonally in a long low lunging step. I like this done with an outside C motion of the foot, to get a better outside angle, to avoid stepping on the foot of a left-hander, and to get a high, quick half-pivot.
Ideally you will land on the ball of your foot with your toes pointed diagonally past your opponent, and then pivot high and short as you deliver the second stroke. I like letting the rear foot drag around behind some, counter to my boxing instincts. This helps you achieve your pass, by getting you off line and forcing the opponent—if he was entering—to pivot to keep you in front of him.
The Strokes
The first stroke is a lateral forehand to the hand, or a beat to the stick, or a feint, or a check to an incoming stick.
There is no hesitation between the first and second stroke. Roll your wrist and pull your elbow in as you let fly a lateral forehand to the ear with a pivot.
If you are using blades use the pivot to power the draw cut. With a stick use that pivot to drive the sweet spot through his head.
This is a one-second long technique at most.
Variations
If you have ankle injuries you may not be able to do the high half-pivot. In this case you are not likely to score a side-of-the-head helmet ringer to a taller opponent, and will instead employ this mostly against same height or shorter men or as a counter to low line attacks. Since my left ankle is bad I use this mostly as a pass when fighting left-handed.
I have gotten some good fast snatching disarms with this. If you can’t score to the head rip a hard beat toward his hand and grip while you try to snag his stick with your empty hand.
If you miss the head and score low on the neck or high on the shoulder the high pivot and the close elbow helps you apply downward pressure, and can assist you in passing until you bring the checking hand into play. I have scored the head shot and the disarm simultaneously with this.
Brett does this stroke with a ‘tip dump’, where he breaks his wrist and lets the end of the stick burrow into the target, rather than slashing through. This is real good against hands, and for defeating gear in general. I once used a series of ‘tip dump’ forehands to destroy Robert’s German riot shield during a bout.
In gladiatorial combat feinting low and hitting high is an excellent application of this, particularly when working around shields, and has scored me numerous kills.
With the stick-and-dagger this is good because it gets you a high line on his knife side [and the knife is usually no good for checking a high power-stroke from a stick] and keeps the elbow in to catch a counter thrust. If you go to the well with this in stick-and-dagger too often you will get gored. It is a nice option though, and I like mixing it with the Brutal Salsa as a comprehensive threat.
Again, for self-defense outside of your home or in a less than kill-or-be-killed situation or Jason Bourne type scenario, do not use this stroke to the head. Feint to the head and shatter his hand.
On the bag this should sound like a gunshot, hopefully a rifle-shot.
Enjoy.
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Add Comment
SeanMarch 16, 2017 4:40 PM UTC

First off thank you to Charles for the wonderful search function that allowed me to find this!

Second what is the brutal salsa?
responds:March 17, 2017 10:49 AM UTC

A double forward shift from outer range through midrange behind two X pattern combos and into a stick-side check.