Sunday, September 01, 2013

Vunak's Top 50 Combat Secrets Ch. 22

Chapter 22: Footwork

On April 10, 2010, Frankie Edgar defeated BJ Penn to win the UFC light weight championship of the world. There is just one minor problem with this fact. BJ Penn is 3 times a better athlete than Frankie, his boxing skills are three times greater, he is 100% more powerful. His clinch game is twice as good, his takedown defense is the best on planet earth, and his jiu-jitsu skills are roughly three times better than Frankie’s. However knowing this empirical data, the fact of the matter is, BJ still lost. Why …. For this answer I will refer you to the title of our chapter, Footwork !

They say there are no superior attributes (like the game rock paper and scissors), however if there were, footwork would be on the top of my list. When one has great footwork, as with Frankie Edgar they can use it to nullify just about every other attribute on their opponent.

It is footwork that enabled Bruce Lee to intercept, it is footwork that makes the straight blast work, and at the end of the day the reason why we loose a fight, when we get tired is because we lost a certain attribute. Yes you guessed it, footwork !

When we look back at individuals with super footwork, individuals like Mohammad Ali, Sugar Ray Leonard, Roy Jones Jr, and more currently Frankie Edgar. They are popular because, these particular sports (boxing, mma), showcase these individuals and put them in the lime light.

However, behind the scenes, please let me share with you, some other folks that you can watch, who I believe have even better footwork than these aforementioned individuals, there is a tape on the internet floating around, that showcases Master Johnny Lacoste doing carenzza. He was 86 at the time. When I asked Inosanto one day, if he felt anyone on this earth had better footwork than Master Lacoste, or perhaps Bruce Lee, he stopped what he was doing, looked up and to the left, about 6 seconds went by, and then he caught me right in the eyes, and said Fred Astaire, and then he gave me a wink !

Needless to say, I spent the next year becoming the Fred Astaire buff, however perhaps not so needless to say, I learned more from this endeavor about footwork, than any thing any martial art teacher ever taught me. I watched Fred Astaire bursting forward and backward, traversing laterally, dropping elevation, twisting, pivoting, breaking rhythm. I saw male triangles, female triangles, bisexual triangles, etc… In a nutshell, the athleticism exuded from this 70 year old man blew away the athleticism exuded from younger martial artists. It was now my mission in life to find out why, was it just that Fred Astaire was so special, was it just that Fred Astaire was the “Michael Jordan” of footwork. Or could it have been something else. So I started investigating other dancers. I investigated different types of dancing, different styles, ethnicities, cultures, and I found over 100 Fred Astaires out there. I found folks, that did things with their feet (and could be directly related to martial arts) that no martial artist, has or could even ever attempt. This led me down, a principle that has molded me for the last 25 years… Music is magical, music improves, clarifies, and enhances, music usurps complacency, transmutes boredom, and literally metamorphasizes ones ability.

Roughly one week after these revelations hit me, I became a musician, and have never looked back. Happy Footwork !

Please check the Table of Contents for links to other chapters of this Online Book.



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Stickgrappler's Sojourn of Septillion Steps