Knife fighting: The backbone of Filipino martial arts

November 16, 2013 9:43 pm
The attacker delivers a high stab with his right hand. Punong Lakan Garitony Nicolas checks the attacker’s knife hand with his left hand while performing an upward cut on the elbow crook with his knife.

The attacker delivers a high stab with his right hand. Punong Lakan Garitony Nicolas checks the attacker’s knife hand with his left hand while performing an upward cut on the elbow crook with his knife.

Dan Inosanto once said that the knife is the backbone of the Filipino martial arts (FMA). The Philippines has an enduring blade culture and Filipino men in earlier times considered their attires incomplete without their knives on them. In some FMA schools, the stick is a mere training tool to teach the movements of the blade.

The one thing that separates knife fighting from stick fighting or empty hand fighting is that it requires a killing commitment. There are primarily two ways to inflict damage with a knife – to stab with its point or to slash with its edge.

In the above photos, Punong Lakan Garitony Nicolas, the founder of Modern Arnis Mano-Mano Filipino Martial Arts demonstrates a solo daga or single knife technique using the pakal or ice pick grip while his opponent employs a standard grip.

 







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