Defying the Storm

Defying the Storm is one of several techniques that are used against a right roundhouse club attack. While being one of the most street effective club defenses, it also showcases and uses many of the principles that Mr. Parker thought were very important.

The Technique

1. Step your right foot to 12 o'clock as you execute a right hammering inward handsword to your attacker's right bicep and a left outward handsword to your attacker's inner wrist. (You are on the inside of the right roundhouse club attack.)

2. Have your left hand grab your attacker's right wrist as you simultaneously hook your right hand over and above their elbow.

3. Step your right foot back to 5 o'clock as you pull your atacker forward using a push / pull effect against their elbow joint.

4. Execute a right step through knee strike to your attacker's sternum.

5. As you land forward, execute an inward overhead elbow strike to your attacker's 7th vertebrae using marriage of gravity to enhance the strike.

6. As you cover out grab the club with your right hand.

The Analysis:

I will break down each move in more detail and highlight important elements. Obviously techniques in a written format can not be covered in the same detail as one-on-one instruction, but the major points can be covered.
1. The initial motion contains one of the most important parts of the technique, which is stepping inside of the apex of the arc drawn by the hand that is weilding the club. Stepping forward and blocking the arm is really only half the battle. You have to make sure you stop them as they are swinging with some tremendous power. Remember, they are trying to take your head off with that club. The other half of the battle is that you also have to try to avoid the whip action of the club. Abruptly stopping the arm that is swinging a club accelerates the club itself. When you step deep into the apex of the swing, it (the step) takes the target, your head, and moves it safely out of range. Out of range in this case is in reality very close to your attacker.

The block that is used in this technique is a right inward handsword to your attacker's bicep and a left outward handsword to your attacker's inner wrist. The right inward handsword is delivered with a hammering action and this strike, it hits just above the elbow, near the rise of the bicep, can have debilitating effects on your attacker's arm. Your left hand needs to strike hard at the wrist, possibly causing a release as well as preventing and checking most chances for the inadvertant club whip. Your hands should be far enough apart so that if your block is overpowered your thumbs will not poke your eyes accidentally.

2. The second move contains several important principles. As you step back with your right foot, your left-hand pushes away from you and your right hand pulls back towards you. This is the typical push-pull effect found in many Kenpo techniques. It's essentially the inside version of the arm bar found in Crossing Talon and others. Your right elbow should anchor itself towards your right hip, don't leave the elbow up. Along with the push-pull and the anchoring is the use of body momentum. As this move progresses you need to time it with the use of your body weight moving in line to assist with the elbow break. All of these principles and movements should be timed together to assist your efforts in bringing your attacker towards you.

3. When your attacker is in the proper position and his various dimensions are canceled out, it is time to continue to the next move and deliver the knee strike. The target of choice is the sternum. Angle of incidence is desired here so the angle of the chest determines whether the knee is linear or vertical. A linear or a vertical delivery is crucial to achieve the proper angle of attack. Since ideal is a bit harder to come by, we need to look at alternative targets. First off, self-composure is the key to looking ahead to find targets that give maximum results. Although, most options deal with directing the knee to other targets, sometimes you ought to extend the knee to front kick range and look for other targets deeper into the zone of attack. An example might be to kick your attacker in the groin or take out your attacker's left knee as an alternative to the sternum shot. Repetition and practice as well as having good instruction will help with these types of alternatives.

4. The inward overhead elbow is one of the upper body's most powerful strikes. Angle of incidence is not too hard to accomplish in this move. Your attacker is usually bent over at this point. Any spinal target is good, although soft tissue in the back of the neck is a place that doesn't absorb well. The elbow should have a tight circular action which enhances the speed of it. This move is also one of the classic examples of how to apply gravity to a strike. The elbow strike should make contact just prior to your weight settling onto the ground. This timing is what determines how hard the elbow will make contact. Watch the timing of this movement yourself to see how the timing relates to the maximum power in the strike.

5. The crossover cover runs along the line of your attacker's right arm. If the club is still in your attacker's hand, use gravity along with the body momentum in the crossover to get the club out of your attacker's hand. Take the club away with the web of your hand. As your cover is completed with a step through reverse the club will be in your right hand, which is now the farthest away from your attacker.

If the club is not in your attacker's hand, you may want to see if you can sweep it out of your attacker's reach. Don't bend over to pick it up until you are well away from your attacker.