Photos Courtesy Of James Lafond

artists who would make up the readership. While most of those people practice knife arts in the context of a blade-to-blade encounter, my research demonstrated that a statistically insignificant portion of edged-weapon encounters are blade-to-blade. In fact, of the 316 incidents I have documented, less than 3 percent were knife fights.

Knowing that readers would expect information about knife fights, I began knife sparring to collect data on what such an encounter might be like. Three problems immediately inhibited the rate

The author's knife study took place in an enclosed area that limited participants to three consecutive steps in any direction.

at which I could proceed:

• Martial artists in central Maryland are generally unwilling to engage in any type of contact-weapon sparring, with many citing the Dog Brothers videos as proof that realistic sparring with weapons cannot be engaged in without an unacceptable risk of injury. Although it was desirable for the majority of subjects to be non-martial artists—because most participants in edged-weapon conflicts aren't martial artists—a lack of participants with a knowledge of weapons techniques and empty-hand sparring hurt the experiment in regard to tactical deductions.

• Without a proven, workable sparring format, it took an entire year and three debilitating injuries to work out safety

The author (right) engages a young knife fighter in a simulated duel.

The author (right) engages a young knife fighter in a simulated duel.

A significant portion of the sparring component of the study used a simulated butcher knife, which is the most lethal edged weapon commonly employed in actual encounters. It was constructed so that contact could be felt during a stab and so that injury to the face and hands would be minimized. In the version shown here, red marks the edge, blue the point, black the butt and gray the non-scoring portions of the grip and blade.

A significant portion of the sparring component of the study used a simulated butcher knife, which is the most lethal edged weapon commonly employed in actual encounters. It was constructed so that contact could be felt during a stab and so that injury to the face and hands would be minimized. In the version shown here, red marks the edge, blue the point, black the butt and gray the non-scoring portions of the grip and blade.

concerns within the reality-based parameters set for the experiment. • Unable to recruit more than one sparring partner at a time until 2001, I was able to collect information only as long as my own durability and stamina, neither of which are exceptional, lasted.

To simulate the hyper-aggressive action of an edged-weapon encounter, I recruited as my regular sparring partner a non-martial artist of ordinary stature and average athletic ability with an extensive history of competitive ball-play, primarily in pickup basketball games. I then developed a flow-point scoring system in which we fought until one player scored 11 clean strokes, with a torso stab or neck strike counting as two strokes.

Flow-point scoring is a compromise between break-point and continuous-contact. When a player takes a stroke, he invitation tim to greatness b., yjy aw*.-«

OCTOBER 27-29, 2006

DISNEY'S MARTIAL ARTS FESTIVAL combines the positive atmosphere of competition with magic of the WALT DISNEY WORLD® Resort. Martial artists of all disciplines will enjoy the best competition from around the world.

Disciplines include:

Karate • Tae Kwon Do • Judo • Chinese Martial Arts • Grappling and much more.

TIGER CLAW AND DISNEY'S WIDE WORLD OF SPORTS® ARE LOOKING FOR THE BEST OF THE BEST.

Qualifier tournaments will take place across the U.S. for eligibility in the 2006 TIGER CLAW ELITE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP, part of DISNEY'S MARTIAL FESTIVAL 2006 at Disney's Wide World of Sports® Complex.

The Ultimate Karate Bible

The Ultimate Karate Bible

Stop being the victim. Long lost manuscript will show you exactly how to humiliate your enemies with a few secret moves. Stop for a minute and picture this you're walking home alone one night. It's just a regular night like any other and you are eager to get home.

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment