International Martial Science Federation
Phase I Outline & Syllabus
Awareness and Familiarization
“Physical application without science is empty and
science without physical application is lost”
Course Definition – “First Principles”
Phase I provides the “First Principles” needed to support the student’s continued studies with a major emphasis on physical application. These “first principles” serve as the foundational pillars to which the student will reference time and time again to confirm and question; serving as a sort of “lie detector.”
These “first principles” are broken into two categories and are specifically designed to support the other. The “Five Combative Postures” and “Five Technical Essentials” are the “nuts & bolts” and will continually expand according to the student’s progress.
After a brief awareness training, any new job or workout, including the martial arts, almost immediately starts with physical training. This life-long study applies the same successful prominence.
Five Combative Postures
Footwork includes controlled movement, foot position, balance in transition, “rooting”, quick take off, recovery and more. Without a proper physical foundation technique will suffer. It is important to move properly with the technique. Overstepping or under stepping will put the student too far inside or outside to be effective. Improper foot positioning can place the body in contradiction to itself through poor body alignment.
Placement and Targeting
Placement and targeting apply to “blocking” as well as striking. It is equally important to aim your deflecting technique to the correct area as it is to target a punch. Blocking or striking with the wrong part of the hand or arm can cause more damage to the defender than to the attacker. Never throw a technique in a general area. Always be specific in targeting.
Proper control of distancing is one of the more essential principles to develop. In Japanese Martial Arts this is called Maai (間合い), translating simply to "interval", is a term referring to the space between two opponents in combat; it is the "engagement distance". It is a complex concept, incorporating not just the distance between opponents, but also the time it will take to cross the distance, angle and rhythm of attack.
Proper control of distancing is one of the more essential principles to develop. Remaining calm (BAR) under attack requires courage and confidence in the student’s abilities. Distancing not only applies to the distance between opponents but also applies to the range of a technique. Targeting a punch to the head for example will change with the height of either party. This may require a different technique or target area. Over extension of a technique can nullify the effectiveness of a technique, even open possible attack areas on the defender.
Proper timing has several applications. Timing in attacking or evasion, execution of technique and timing between techniques are but few examples. “Jumping the gun” or hesitating can back fire resulting in bumps and bruises. In Karate, there are three very sought after concepts of awareness (Zanshin) attack and defend; Go No Sen, Sen no Sen and Zen No Sen. Go no sen refers to the defender’s response after the initial attack while Sen no sen is the ability to counter simultaneously to an attack, while Zen No Sen is the ability to read your opponent’s intent and counter before the opponent actually has the opportunity to execute their technique. The latter can only be achieved through detailed study of human physique and movement or “body mapping”.
Physical body positioning is key to a positive resolution of an attack or defense. If the arms are positioned wrong, stability is lost. If the body is improperly aligned with the opponent, balance is greatly diminished. Holding an arm too far from the base of the body greatly reduces strength.
Five Technical Essentials
Kinesthesia – Awareness of the position and movement of the parts of the body by means of sensory organs *(proprioceptors) in the muscles and joints. *Proprioceptor is a nerve ending that functions as a sensory receptor in the muscles, tendons, joint and the inner ear: they respond to movement and position.
Simply put the study of proper body physics in motion.
Yin-Yang - Law of Complimentary Opposites
· Physical -
· 6 Paired Superficial Pathways
· Conception & Governing Extraordinary Vessels
· Associated Acupoints
· Five Elements
Physical and energetic divisions of the human body that provides common physical reactionary responses that can be applied to life-protection techniques as well as the defining the student’s personal kinesthetic studies (body mechanics). It is the Understanding of the use of diving the body, Kuzushi (breaking balance), and Yin Yang.