In my Kali class tonight, we spent most of the time working on a technique called “crossada”. Basically “X”… “crossing”. There are many interpretations and approaches to it, and here are some videos that illustrate the concept. Note that what’s in these videos isn’t exactly what we were doing in class, just using the videos to illustrate the basic concept.
The key thing is to note the crossing motions done with the hands and/or weapons.
Note as well the variance of weapons: maybe two sticks, maybe one stick and empty hand, maybe sword and dagger, maybe stick and dagger. Whatever you actually see in their hands, imagine something else or nothing at all. In the end, the motions are basically the same. Consider the motions of the first video using just sticks. Now watch again but mentally put a knife in place of the stick and consider how that changes the impact of the exact same motions.
This is what I am loving about Kali: the simplicity. True simplicity. Your body gets trained to a single set of motions. If your hands are empty, the motions work. If you have a knife in one hand and nothing in the other, the same motions work. If you have one stick in one hand, or one stick in each hand, or a stick in one and knife in the other, the same motions work. You aren’t learning one thing for this weapon, then another thing for this weapon, then this other thing for empty hands, and so on. This allows you to not only get up to speed quickly, but it also gives you a broader spectrum to draw from. When I talked about cross-training, maybe you’d have to learn one thing for empty hands, then learn sword, then learn staff. That’s got the “bricks wide, bricks tall” problem I spoke of. But here with Kali (or Escrima or Arnis), you can just stack your bricks tall and you’ll get width for free (so to speak).
Granted I’m simplifying and I’m still a n00b at Kali. But I can see the simplicity and appreciate it, and it reinforces my decision to make the switch and study Kali. Good, good stuff.