The fourth technique is called She Pu, the Serpent Step. It is so named because the action of the Ninja's body resembles that of a snake. She Pu is used at times when one must move close to the ground to avoid being discovered. Use She Pu when cover is scarce, visibility permits good enemy observation, and speed is not essential.
Fig. 12 -Keep the body as flat as possible. The hands are kept palms down, near the face, with elbows close to the body, legs spread, and toes outward. The head is lifted to observe the enemy. Study the movements of a stalking cat to perfect this approach. To move forward, extend the arms and draw the left leg forward. Pull with the arms and the toes of the left foot. The weight is borne on the forearms and the left leg from knee to ankle. Thus, the body is lifted slightly above the ground to prevent scraping or dragging noises. Change the pushing leg frequently to avoid fatigue. Stop, listen, and observe after each movement. Silence and slow movement are essential. This technique is also taught in every military service in the world. Most frequently called the Low Crawl and practiced under barbed wire while live rounds ricochet overhead to acclimate the recruit to battle. In South Africa it is known as the Leopard Crawl, because that is the action of the animal that most closely resembles that need to be successful. To the Ninja, however, the technique includes the injunction to "weave back and forth across the line of travel" in serpentine fashion to disguise the trail and avoid gunfire.
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