Sunday, July 22, 2012

Ballistic Punching

Recently I've been reading up and watching video of Systema, a Russian system that's becoming more popular in the West. I see a lot of similarity with things I do, incorporating some of the concepts I've learned over the years from Aikido and Tai Chi as well as Escrima. One is something Val Riazanov call "ballistic punching", a term I've used as well to describe the idea. It involves relaxation, not tension; more like firing a bullet than pushing a car. Extreme examples, but to get the idea ... Here's a simple example of how it works. Punch your fist into your opposite open palm. You can do it like a baseball player pounding the palm of his glove, just putting it in there so it sticks. Now keep doing this: stick, pull it out, repeatedly. Now throw one punch that's faster but not "harder" or deeper, just faster. Let it snap back on impact. Feel the difference in energy? There are specialty spark plugs that have capacitors. This takes the incoming electrical charge, stores it for a millisecond and then discharges it in a much shorter but more intense burst of energy, resulting in a hotter spark. Just another analogy.

5 comments:

FSD said...

Nice blog Stickman!

I'm skeptical as to how will this will work in reality. It's fine when you punch your hand or an opponent who is not resisting, but if you try it on a heavy bag I think you'll find the relaxed striking really hurts...as every action has an equal and opposite reaction. That force goes back into your joints, and when your muscles are relaxed, it can really damage them.

stickfighter said...

This sounds similar to Wing Chun punching - which is also something I incorporate into my Escrima training.

The way I was taught to refine this - set up a wall bag. Put a bell on the other side of the wall. Punch the bag. If the bell rings you transferred power from the punch, through the wall and moved the bell. Ballistic punching.

Carmelino Guiao said...

This type of punching is used in wing chun. Plus there are other types of energy distribution such as a deadblow, where you relax into your punch and not withdraw. It has the effect of a deadblow hammer. Thrust punch to create distance. And the ballistic aka whiplash punch. You pack a lot more power...however the fist needs to be conditioned so it doesn't hurt as much.

Stickman said...

If I try it on a heavy bag? I've done that for years! The old kung-fu adage (which Bruce Lee popularized) of a rock on the end of a rope applies. If you are tense, the energy rebounds into your body. By being relaxed it all goes one way. It's like hitting something with a dead hammer vs. a solid mallet, or a whip vs. a stick.

Stickman said...

Notice when drunks get in major auto accidents, they're the ones who don't die? It's because they're relaxed, but they're victims are not.