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TRAINING METHODS

OUR PEDAGOGICAL APPROACH

Our training methods have developed over decades of teaching martial arts. They have been particularly influenced in recent times by the pedagogical approach of Grandmaster William Bernas, represented in the diagram below, and influenced by both his early training in the Wedo tradition, and his later study within the structured methods of the Navales Arnis Clinic.

 

Note, that concentrating on only one quadrant of the training cycle, or avoiding a quadrant, are sure ways to find yourself trapped or limited in terms of your progress. It is only by embracing all four quadrants that true martial arts mastery can be achieved. Over-emphasing the "Soft" training phases leaves one lacking in intent and stopping power, and with reduced tactical capabilities. Over-emphasing the "Hard" training phases can lead to mechanical inefficiencies, unnecessary injuries, and a lack of adaptability. Over-emphasising the "Slow" training phases leaves you without an ability to apply your knowledge against a live opponent. Over-emphasising the "Speed" training phases tends to leave you with a superficial understanding of the technical methods of a system, and their practical and tactical purpose. Thus, without engaging all four quadrants in your training, one is fundamentally left LARPing (Live Action Role Playing). We have no objection to LARPing. It just isn't what we are offering in our training, and it isn't the path to true martial arts mastery.

 

The diagram below was inspired by a diagram developed by Tuhon Arelene Stevens and presented in the book Visualising Flow (p. 43). Her approach there is similiarly structured, but with different foci in each of the quadrants, idiosyncratic to the FMA system she teaches. We have generated our own version to match the specifics of our pedagogical methods and training cycle that we use in our club.

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