So this is the second of my monthly round ups and there is still a lot going on despite it being technically quieter than last month.
I think the last month has proven to be very useful to almost everyone who has been able to make it. A focus on taking the fight to your opponent has improved free play and there is a lot less running away being employed. Taking a more traditional look at Savate has opened up a range of new techniques as well as opened our eyes to the aggressive nature of this art. Now we have mats grappling was a very different affair this month as we started looking at take downs from the Bartitsu Compendiums. Whilst it was a slow start I think the take home message is that this is something we can do and with practice will become a regular part of our arsenal. Self defence with coat was an interesting continuation of our looking at modern day, readily available, improvised weapons. Whist it was clearly more complex and less reliable that the previously studied belt, it cannot be denied some of the techniques, if kept simple, could be used in a real life context. I suspect we will revisit the coat again in future months. Finally the cane session completed a look at the basic movements that the style employs. It is clear that some people still need to remember it is a stick and not a sword but the progress being made is encouraging. One thing this session made clear is that cane is fast, vicious and deadly with very little practice.
So looking ahead to the coming month it is time for me to decide what the focus of our classes will be. I admit that I am still undecided on where I will take the Pugilism class but I suspect it will either be a focus on free play or a look at basic trapping techniques as a way to close to grappling range. Savate will be a continued look at the classical exercises and techniques with a focus on defending against kicks without retreating out of range. Grappling will be looking at more take down techniques from the cannon material as well as a lot more practice at break falling. Finally cane will be a mix of continuing to look at the basic manoeuvres as well as an introduction to feints. I am also hoping this month will see a couple of new members joining us so will be a good chance to cover some of the basics again over all of the classes which is something you can never train enough.
Coming up in September is the School of Arms at Beamish (I believe there are currently two spaces left due to people dropping out last minute). This will be a great boost to Bartitsu in the local area and I am hoping to be able to bring a lot of the material that we cover there back to our classes. I may even do a seminar on a Saturday afternoon shortly after the event to give a flavour of what was covered at the event.
So let’s make this next month as productive as the last and remember the more you put into your training and into the classes the more you will take away from them.