Why train to receive strikes?

by Vladimir Vasiliev


An excerpt from the book STRIKES: Soul Meets Body

(Chapter 7 - Strike Training)


Only if a man can guarantee that he will never be hit in a fight, that he can see everything coming and that he can perfectly avoid all the time - only such a man doesn't need this training.

You have to check yourself - how you react to contact. Some people teach you defense, defense, defense. What do you mean, defense- People will hit you no matter what. You need to know how to react. It's normal.

You start working with limited force. That's why we do pushing practice before striking practice. You have to learn to be stable, to take a step back with the leg, not to protrude any part of your body, and so on. It applies very directly to the real world. Suppose somebody lunges at your midsection with a knife. You recoil your mid-section to avoid it, which lowers your head and neck. The attacker then immediately slashes upward and you're done. That's the kind of stupid response we're working to eliminate.

In the army, they have all kinds of mock single combats, with pugil sticks and so on. It's good in a way, because it trains the spirit. But you need some technical knowledge to go with your spirit. Imagine you have a good spirit, but you face a guy who outweighs you by 100+ pounds. That's when you need both good spirit and good skills. Otherwise the big guy won't care about your spirit, he'll just destroy you.

In Systema, we have two primary ways to remove and dissipate strikes - through breathing and through movement.


The book, Strikes: Soul Meets Body, can be purchased here:  http://www.russianmartialart.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=331#.V_FcOsnkpWE