Bushin’s Got Talent

Sensei Ian and I made the cut for the show opener for Britain’s Got Talent! Ok, so not much Bushin was involved in then end but it was a good crack nonetheless. At least we manage to throw a few punches in the dance routine. Next stop Hollywood!

You can check out the clip below. Not easy to spot as we are buried in the crowd but we are wearing our gis….on the left, a few rows back.

Free Self Defence Tasters

“Try out some practical self defence from the Bushin martial art. There will be 20 minute taster sessions where you will learn extremely useful defence techniques and tips to stay street safe. Turn up in your normal clothes, learn from the masters and have some fun!”

We are running some free self defence taster sessions as part of the City of Westminster’s “Be Active” week. These will be three 20 minute sessions between 12 midday and 1pm on Tuesday 27th, Wednesday 28th and Thursday 29thMarch. It will be at Westminster City Hall on Victoria Street, a short walk from Victoria Station. You can register online for any of the classes. More details to follow.

Come along and also receive a free lesson flyer for our regular classes at Queen Mothers Sports Centre. Give it a try!


Triangles and Lines

Whether its martial arts, MMA or self defence, the technical principles can be very similar. Fighting on London streets or fighting in the ring…only the rules change.

A useful aspect of fighting we worked on recently was using lines of movement to execute attacks and defence/counters. Technically speaking, you could move to attack in a number of ways: straight, angled and curved or any variation of the same. Over the years I’ve found straight attacks very difficult to get in unless you are quick and get inside your opponents guard. Usually, most people default to the norm…take a small step in, attempt to attack straight and get bopped on the nose. This often leads to the Mexican stand-off where both fighters become too scared to make any meaningful attack.

I find one of the best lines of attack is to come at an angle, using v-lines to the side. This does two things: attacks at a different angle and protects you from their counter. The knack is to not be lazy…try to shuffle or dodge to the side like a football dummy engaging the glutes and thighs. Be explosive and dynamic and you have a good chance of scoring a shot and breaking the guard to pummel on the inside. L-steps (yose ashi) or skips (kumo ashi) work very well and getting you to the right spot.

Curving round your opponent works well but I tend to find leaves you with difficulty in following up. Very good for the cheeky point or the hard, penetrating jab but difficult to capitalise on. I often use this to soften the opponent up and work them into a sweat before switching to something else.

The straight attack is the most difficult to do well. Its best to use deep footwork or a step-in (sashi kae ashi), to break inside the trading range and onto the opponents centre line (seichusen). Once you are in and on the line, its pretty much there for the taking and you can pound away with little resistance. Centre line fighting is great for close quarter work, trapping and stand-up grappling (juho).

The trick is to practise it in drills and then try and put it into your sparring. The more you do it, the more you will get a feel for the timing and execution. In summary, try not to hesitate and be indecisive. It’s about confidence. Make a decision, move in and be aggressive. Even if your accuracy or timing is a little off you will find you end up in a better position than your opponent. Fight from a position from strength and you will overcome.

Sixes and Sevens

Massive congratulations to all those that grading today. We had 7 gradings…6 people up to the next level: Deborah, Clayton, Paul, Omar and Stephen, and the first Bushin double grading from Jeremy. Well done to all! The bravery award went to Stephen for his acrobatic ukemi, while Omar snatched the spot for biggest improver. Lots of things to work on but the standard was good and the pace brutal as usual. I’m very pleased to see you working on weaknesses in previous gradings and the progression from earlier levels was evident.

Videos will be handed out shortly. Thanks to Jay for helping out and thanks to Fiona for the celebratory biccies!

Keep up the good work and look forward to the next one.

Happy training!