Modern Arnis - The MFA Method
Modern Arnis, the MFA Method is an explosive system where two Arnisadors each armed with sticks engage in spontaneous sparring. Striking, blocking, entering, trapping, locking, disarming, off balancing, control moves and takedowns are applied, flowing from one technique to the next, with counters and recounters.
In the beginning level, the instructor will feed the student the 12 angles of attack, which the student will defend and counter, incorporating his live, checking hand. The instructor will do the same. This checking with the live hand is important and helps to control the opponent, set up your offense, and backup your defense. This develops good sensitivity in the live hand and intergrates it with the stick, and by either parrying, grabbing or checking (tapi-tapi) the opponents stick, hand or wrist, can set him up for a variety of striking, trapping, locking, disarming and finishing techniques.
Pushing and pulling is also emphasized and used to control and off balance the opponent, as well as grabbing and releasing. Punching and Kicking is incorporated as well as body shifting, bobing and weaving, slipping, angling, footwork and positioning, to develop the proper body mechanics and reflexes essential to becoming a good fighter.
As in some Filipino Systems where groupings of technique are taught, the "MFA Method" uses Pre-set "sequences". They include Basic, Trapping, Striking, Grabbing and releasing, Gunting, Punyo, Abaniko, Lay -on, Long range sequences and more. These are your blueprint and bible of techniques that you can always go back to, to practice your basics and tools of being a well schooled fighter. They are only used as a "way" to train and develop,......... a "Method". Through continuous drilling and training of these the student/fighter develops the neccesary reflexes and tools to becoming a well schooled fighter and progresses to the second level where he can break away from the structure of the sequences, and flow and react spontaneously to any combination of attacks, flowing from counter to counter in a free style sparring.
In the Advanced Level, one has the ability to control his opponent. He knows there can only be certain responses to his attacks, therefore if his opponent blocks his attack, he can imediately follow up with a counter attack. He can also purposely set his opponent up for a variety of counter attacks, therefore always being at least one step ahead of his opponent and sometimes two or three. And if the opponent doesnt block??............ well we all know what happens next!!!!
At this advanced level the "St1ckfighter" puts it all together, striking, punching, kicking and employing takedowns and finishing moves.
In fighting, positioning is everything, and from these positions there are a variety of many techniques that could be applied. Your selection of technique you choose to train is most important. Remember, the way you train is the way you will react. The more complicated and fancy the move, the less likely it will be effective in a real combat situation, thus the difference between the "Art" and the "Combat". What do you want to do? Train 90% of the time on technique that will work maybe 2% of the time? Or train 90% on technique that have a 90% chance of working? Again, it is difference between the "Combat" vs the "Art". You cant prepare for combat, by training the "Art". Or as we call it, "Damage Inc.", maximum damage mininmal effort !!!
This "IS" the system, the "MFA Method" of Modern Arnis. At the most advanced level the "System" teaches itself and is an ongoing, evolving work in progress. Remember, "Always stay a student to the game". Always looking for a better more effective way. Not being bound by "Tradition". Not being afraid to evolve and embrace and include new more effective ways of training and fighting just as the GM Remy Presas. Thus the name "Modern" Arnis, "Modern" Training,"Modern" Fighting Arts.
The more realistic you make your training the more you will see this, as well as other realities of fighting. Full and real contact training is very valuable in the discovery of these truths and realities of combat as well as discovering a lot about yourself.
Mabuhay Ang Arnis,
Guro Andrew "Tattoo" Filardo