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Ted T.
01-11-2005, 12:57 PM
A lot has been said about the (necessary) usefulness of the drop step - a shift of body weight forward, usually with some waist torque, to accompany a hand strike to add force and driving through the target.

But there is another pricipe of combat being talked about and that is 'weapon first' - your hand or foot moves directly toward the target in a relaxed and sometime whipping manner to avoid the dangers of telegraphing your attack and to make sure that you are not just pushing it out.

My problem is that if my hands are up and ready and I can reach my target, if I do 'weapon first', the strike is finished and the target is hit before I can shift my weight. I've never actually timed it but I just know that it takes me more time to lift my front foot and put it down even one inch further than it does to snap out an eye jab. Whenever I try to use the drop weight principle, I have to let most of the step finish and the waist start to turn before I snap out to make the strike so foot, weight and strike all hit about the same time. If I strike too soon, it is always finshed while I am "in the air." This seems to me to have some advantage as it can power the follow thru but it doesn't seem to quite fit the exact definition of the drop step.

Holding back the strike a part of a second is the only way I've found to hit with the drop step principle. This makes me have to disguise my use of the body shift as a turn or just a step or I telegraph.

I've basically decided to keep these very useful concepts but not as a team, used together, more like a one or the other, depending.

michael
01-11-2005, 01:07 PM
McCann talks about "weapon first" in his Combatives series, and I learned the same thing in some of my past training. I learned to strike from where your hands are, without drawing back and telegraphing your attack.

I think there are times you will want to do a quick strike without the drop step, just as there are times when you want full power and will use the drop step. I do think it is possible to do both, but it takes a lot of practice. I can do both, but it does give up a little in speed when doing it this way. It's good to be able to do it in any combination, based on the circumstances and the tactics shown by your attacker. More tools for the toolbox.

tmanifold
01-11-2005, 04:57 PM
http://stickgrappler2.tripod.com/kbox/dempsey8.html

A better description of the drop step then dempsey's doesn't exist.

Skpotamus
01-11-2005, 08:24 PM
Ted, I think you're having problems with the range and purpose of the drop step and not so much the step itself.

There are two reasons to use the drop step, one is to close the distance on a target out of arms reach, the other is for power. These two go hand in hand however, you use the drop step to attack a long range opponent and attack them with maximum power by getting your bodyweight behind your strikes.

If your hand is reaching the target and returning while still in mid step, then the step itself wasn't necessary and will probably only result in you losing balance and putting yourself in a dangerously close position. I say dangerous because your long range strike will most likely be jammed by the closeness of your attacker and will leave you in a position to be easily counter attacked.

Keeping your body moving, through use of the bob and weave will allow you to put your body into strikes where the drop step is inappropriate due to range constraints, as well as allowing you to better attempt to dodge any attacks thrown your way.

RES
01-11-2005, 11:53 PM
A lot has been said about the (necessary) usefulness of the drop step - a shift of body weight forward, usually with some waist torque, to accompany a hand strike to add force and driving through the target.

Holding back the strike a part of a second is the only way I've found to hit with the drop step principle. This makes me have to disguise my use of the body shift as a turn or just a step or I telegraph.

I've basically decided to keep these very useful concepts but not as a team, used together, more like a one or the other, depending.

There's a critical element missing in your line of thinking:

MOVEMENT.

No technique works in a vacuum, and no one fights standing still. The problem with learning techniques alone, is that you learn the technique, but not how to apply it while on the move. The result of this, is that unduly emphasis is placed on "sneaking in" the technique through the application of speed alone. Note that I say "unduly"; this is a needed skill, but not THE essential skill.

Learn to factor movement into your techniques, and the relevance of both types of striking becomes apparent.

Ted T.
01-12-2005, 07:48 AM
Thanks guys, thanks Tony,

Sure, when I snap out a chin jab or eye flick I usually move but it is slow compared to the strike. I also move when I drop step since I like going deep and keeping my forward motion, go into a knee spike.

Two great compatible principles,not necessarily useful at exactly the same time.

Lou Costello
01-12-2005, 08:03 AM
What 'Skpotamus' said.

Years ago I attended seminars given by Joe Lewis, a very powerful professional karate fighter. He taught the drop or 'stutter' step to close distance and deliver power. Part of the learning drill was a 'stutter' step of 6-12". Very effective.

Bri Thai
01-12-2005, 08:20 AM
To me there is a trade off between a power strike and a non telegraphed one. I've lost count of the amount of people who claim to move their "weapon first", but don't.

You really can effectively move your weapon first on low impact techniques. Like flicking the fingers to very vulnerable areas (eyes and throat). These are great techniques to help you win, but won't cause a knockout. Richard Dimitri has this to a fine art. They can win fights on their own, or can help you get in to effectively finish with other things.

But a powerful strike with a drop step (and / or hip twist)? I havent seen it happen and, for the record, I have many tapes from the best out there. There is always body movement first. The better guys acknowledge it and mask it with decptive dialogue. The not so good guys pretend that it isn't there.

I agree, though, that a technique should be launched from hands that are already moving, i.e. launch a pre emptive shot whilst "talking with your hands". But a high impact strike needs the body to move first. Otherwise its like pushing a piece of string.

Ted T.
01-12-2005, 10:38 AM
What Bri sez! :)

I saw a great step into a right open palm to the face with a deep right foot from Bas Reuten at a ufc fight, telegraphed from Ohio but it got the guy and straightened him up like a pole!