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Defense part 1: Stances

Updated: Jan 20




Learning how to defend against punches, kicks, and takedowns/throws, is essential to round out your self-defense abilities. The first step to having good defense is your stance. A strong stance will allow you to stop oncoming strikes, and takedown attempts.


Additionally, having a strong stance can allow you to attack with more power. Conversely, having a poor (or no) stance can lead to you getting hit and knocked down, controlled, and/or taken down or thrown to the ground.


There are two types of stances you will want to employ: The neutral stance and the fighting stance.

  1. The Neutral Stance is a natural position you may be in if you are not expecting an attack:

  • Put your hands up between cheekbones and temples, about 2-4 inches away from your face.

  • Either clench your fists or open your hands with fingers together and slightly bent (palm heels forward, fingers back).

  • Next, round your shoulders forward and tuck your chin down, but keep your eyes up to see the assailant.

  • Finally, place your feet about shoulder-width apart, and bend knees slightly.

See pic below:

Neutral Stance




2. Next, The Fighting Stance is a stable stance that should be employed the moment the fight

begins:

  • Put your hands up between cheekbones and temples, about 2-4 inches away from your face.

  • Either clench your fists or open your hands with fingers together and slightly bent (palm heels forward, fingers back).

  • Next, round your shoulders forward and tuck your chin, but keep your eyes up to see the assailant.

  • Finally, place your feet about shoulder width apart; bend knees slightly. With both feet about shoulder width apart, step one foot back and a little out to the side. If your left leg is forward, your feet should look somewhat like the letter “L.” If your right leg is forward, your feet should look somewhat like the letter “J.” Make sure your rear foot is not directly behind your lead leg as that will cause imbalance.

Note: There should be a comfortable gait to your stance. You should be able to lean forward,

backwards, laterally, and diagonally without feeling like you are going to lose your balance or

need to take a step. Pick your hands up to protect your face.


See pic below:


Fighting Stance (left leg forward)

Practice these drills to make your stance strong:

  • Exploding into Stance – practice moving explosively into both neutral and fighting stances quickly.

  • Flowing Between Stances – practice flowing from neutral to fighting stance effortlessly.

  • Striking in Stance - practice all of your strikes, and your clinches from both neutral and fighting stances. Practice in the air, on a heavy bag, and/or with a partner.

  • Drill these stances hundreds of times until they become second nature.

Below is a short demonstration video of me flowing between stances while striking.



Please help me:

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This will help me to continue providing free training for you.

Here is the link: The Short Fight, https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0948LNX5M

Thanks so much!



Want to get in the best shape of your life? Check out our fitness training programs here https://www.theshortfight.com/fitness


For more self-defense techniques and tactics, get my book, The Short Fight, on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0948LNX5M


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Until next time, Stay Fit!

Lawrence Castanon,

Author, The Short Fight

#theshortfight


Shadow Boxing While Flowing Between Stances



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