8 Kali Lessons – Marcaida

In this video, we learn 8 critical Kali lessons from the founder of Marcaida Kali, Kuya Doug Marcaida. The whole video was shot inside Doug’s home studio in Rochester by Funker Tactical.

We learn that the studio is actually an extension of his home and people come from all over the world to train under him. The lighting inside the studio was set up to create a mood for training.

The first lesson is to challenge your instructor. This means whenever you are taught a technique, you should not just blindly accept it. You should test it out and see if it works for you. If it doesn’t you should figure out an alternative and challenge your master.

The second lesson is to explore the similarities and differences with different knives. During the sparring with his students, we see that different weapons have some similarities but they also have some differences in how you can handle them. Knowing the differences can help you get an advantage over your opponents.

The third lesson is to understand the value of drills. This means devoting your whole attention when doing your drills.

The fourth lesson is to develop situational awareness. This means you should own your space.

The fifth lesson is to be aware of threat indicators. This means you should be actively looking for visual cues that can indicate that someone is concealing a weapon.

The sixth lesson is weapon retention. Carrying a weapon with you means nothing if you cannot retain or protect it. If your opponent can hurt you as you try to get your weapon then you are doomed.  

The seventh lesson is to understand the nature of predators. Once you learn to understand how the minds of a predator work, you can use it to set up invisible self-defense around yourself.

The eighth lesson is to learn how to embrace fear. Embracing fear helps us to activate our sixth sense. This helps us to stay in our top condition.

3 key points –

1. Kali can be taught to anyone, anywhere, and anytime. In fact, backyard instructors remain in the center of Filipino Martial Arts.

2. You should take your time doing your drills in order to understand them fully.

3. You should embrace fear as it can heighten your senses.

“I am a product of backyard instruction and I’m very proud to say I am a backyard instructor.”

Escrima Stick Disarm

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One of the key principles of any fight is to disarm your opponent as efficiently as possible. Kali escrima has some of the fastest disarming flows that exist in the world of Martial Arts.

Meet Mark Anastacio as he demonstrates a few disarming techniques using the outside attack angle, once you have gotten a solid grasp on your opponent’s weapon of choice (which in this case is an escrima stick).

The point of this video is to teach you to get an advantage over your opponent while avoiding or overcoming a stalemate. You can also execute the disarm flow once you have grappled your opponent.

Mark begins the video with an important lesson, always keep moving your body and hands. In order to successfully disarm your opponent, you need to make the first move, depending on the circumstances. You also need to make sure that your opponent isn’t able to block your shots. If they do so, disengage and begin from the start, or improvise as you seem fit.

Once you make contact, make sure to keep moving and get into the correct position to execute a disarm. The first disarm is quite simple and mostly involves the striking stick arm. For a better understanding watch the video.

Note that this disarm only works with an escrima stick and you will be needing to practice a lot so before you can execute it flawlessly.

The second string of disarms is used once you convinced that the first one isn’t working. There may be a lot of reason; maybe your opponent has a lot of upper body strength, or they may have better positioning, thereby preventing you from disarming them.

In the second disarm, Mark intercepts with his other arm, using it as extra leverage to submit the opponent into giving away his weapon. The third disarm is even more powerful since it utilizes the momentum of the whole body.

In the latter part of the video, Mark introduces melee strikes to his disarms which can help you disarm your opponent’s stick or hit them once they are weaponless. There are lots of options to choose from.

Useful tips:

  1. The last point he emphasizes is that disarming is not the endgame. Your opponent may pull another weapon, so stay alert
  2. This will also help you brainstorm new techniques which can be sued in clutch situations
  3. The techniques are flexible and can easily transition between disarming, control and even elimination

Knife Defense from Chair

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Most people think it is impossible to defend an oncoming attack if you’re in a seated position or in a wheelchair. Silat trainer Maul Mornie demonstrates how easy it is to fend off such an attack even when you’re in a handicapped spot.

The moves he demonstrates in the short video is easy to execute and is done so in just a few simple steps. It’s a great tactic for beginner students and can also be implemented by advanced practitioners into more complex fighting strings.

The video in a nutshell:

  1. Apprehend the attacker
  2. Take control of the situation by disarming the knife(or any other handheld weapon)
  3. Make the assailant submit by pinning him to the ground

Advanced Jeet Kune Do

In this video, Dan Lok teaches us the importance of broken rhythm which is a form of advanced Jeet Kune Do training. Dan Lok was trained by  Bruce Lee’s original student Ted Wong and Joe Lewis.

Right at the start, the video features a scene from the movie ‘Game of Death’, where we see Bruce Lee fighting with Dan Inosanto and demonstrating the art of broken rhythm. Bruce Lee was good at intercepting because he had a great ability to read the moves of his opponents. This was possible because of his mastery over broken rhythm.

In order to demonstrate the art of broken rhythm, Dan spars with his fellow martial arts instructor. We learn that every movement has a rhythm and a flow. If you suddenly incorporate a half beat in your movement of flow, you can disrupt the flow of your opponent and get an advantage.

You can also break the rhythm of your opponents by changing the beat of your movement speed from fast to slow. Although your movement will be slow, you will still hit them as they will be caught unaware.  

Dan informs that the easiest way to learn broken rhythm is to change the speed and timing of your movement when you practice your drills every day. It does not matter whether it is a punching drill, a kicking drill or anything else. As long you practice it daily you will see the results.

This way you will be able to train your nervous system for different tempo and get used to the unnaturalness of broken rhythm. Once you get a little used to the movement, you also include a half beat between a slow movement and a fast movement.

Dan also informs us that although people think that Bruce Lee was good at intercepting his opponent’s technique, it was not completely true. Bruce Lee was actually a master at intercepting the tempo and rhythm of his opponents. This is why he was able to shut down his opponents just as they tried to attack him

3 key points –

1. Bruce Lee was a master of broken rhythm.

2. You can vary your rhythm by inserting a half beat in the flow of your movement. This will also break the rhythm of your opponents.

3. Broken rhythm is against human nature and that’s why it makes you unpredictable.

“If you can beat someone’s rhythm, you can beat the guy. It is very very simple.”

Knife Fighting Defense

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Knife fights can go south pretty quickly. Forget everything you have seen in action movies. In an uncoordinated you must expect the unexpected. Instead of relying on fancy movement strings, you must hone your skills to judge a situation and act accordingly.

Funker Tactical has come up with a video addressing 20 life saving lessons that will surely come in handy during a knife fight. The trainers concentrate on movement and perception. Before learning the countermeasures the video teaches you to detect incoming attacks.

The lesson is quite simple and does not emphasize on any particular defensive tactics. It presents you with a situation, and teaches you to react to it quickly and efficiently. The video will surely come in handy if you happen to find yourself facing a knife-wielding thug who think they can get the better of you just because you’re weaponless.

Don’t Punch in a Fight – JKD

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Contrary to popular belief, punching during a street fight isn’t a good idea. When you’re entering the fight, you have very little information regarding your opponent. Instead of landing blows, you must concentrate on countermeasures that will tip the scales in your favor while minimizing the damage done to yourself.

The video does a great job pointing out the flaws of punching and suggests how you can be more effective in a fight with less devastating options. A punch:

  • Reduces the surface area of your hit, lessening the force behind it
  • Can lead to injuries if you accidentally hit the skull or the elbow
  • Tenses your body and prevents you from releasing all your energy

So instead of a punch, David Wong suggests you use your palm. Not only does it deliver more power to your hits, but it does so while minimizing any risks since your palms can soak up impacts better than your knuckles. For more details on how to improve your technique, visit the link below.

Tim Kennedy – Hard to Kill

This video is a documentary of the ‘Sheepdog Response training course’ conducted in the D.C area which is taught by the president and founder of ‘Sheepdog Response’, Tim Kennedy. It is conducted by film-maker Amir Ebrahimi, the owner of

Tim Kennedy is a special forces sniper, a ranger qualified green beret and a former UFC martial arts fighter. Tim reveals that the purpose of this training is to change the current culture of Americans.

The video also features American stand-up comedian, former television host and actor, mixed martial arts, podcast host, color commentator, and businessman Joseph James Rogan. He shares his thoughts on Tim and explains why Tim is such an incredible person.

During the first half video, we see Tim teaching many law enforcement officers sheepdog tactics and explaining the philosophy behind the training. The idea is not to be lethal or so dangerous that you can kill someone. The idea is to be so strong that you can protect yourself and other people from harm. This will let you enjoy a sense of freedom that is not achievable in any other way.

Thus, sheepdog training is provided in order to prevent bad things from happening instead of responding to it.

We learn in the video that Tim respects officers who commit to their oath of protecting and serving common people. However, he cannot stand people who are in law enforcement in order to have some authority and power or just to earn a paycheck.

During the second half of the video, we see Tim teaching his techniques and philosophy to civilians. He believes that although civilians didn’t swear an oath to protect other people, they still have a responsibility or a duty to protect their children. This means you should always be in your best form and be a role model for your kids.

Tim advises civilians that whenever they find themselves in an unavoidable life or death situation, they should assess themselves and the situation thoroughly with a clear head. A wrong move can get them killed or they can kill someone and go to jail. Neither option is a good choice.  

3 key points –

1. Sheepdog response is divided into two divisions – Service men and women, civilian.

2. Sheepdog training is provided to people so that they can stop something bad before it happens instead of responding to it after it has started.

3. You must drill all the techniques today so that you can survive when you encounter a life-threatening situation tomorrow.

“If we do our job right, if we do our job well, nobody will have to die.”

Kali for Brain Health

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The whole world has heard of yoga or other therapeutic massages that are known to cure the mind without the assistance of any sort of medication. However, Kali till now was widely recognized as a martial art mainly used for fighting purposes. The concept of it being used in treating the mind and the body is a comparatively new concept.

Pharmaceuticals cure us in the blink of an eye and though one cannot deny the benefits of modern medicine, it is a better idea to keep the body healthy so that it doesn’t require sort of medicine.

Paul McCarthy in his speech addresses the benefits of Kali and how it can contribute to curing patients who have cognitive problems. Of course, Kali being a martial art requires heavy exercise which keeps the body in a good shape. What Paul is pointing out is the fact that the movements associated with Kali are super-fast and requires decent coordination on the brains part to execute completely.

Paul narrates a story told by his instructor, Guro Dan Inosanto. In the story, a student came up to Dan at a seminar and thanked him for returning his memory. The student had lost all his memory due to an accident and was unable to remember anything whatsoever. However, he managed to find his way back through a drill in Kali named “Heaven Six”. In order to get a better idea to watch the video. The Heaven Six is an exercise where two fighters exchange blows with dual sticks. If you have seen the footage you will notice the movement is fast and cannot be seen with an untrained eye.

This training was created to shape the brain and enhance its cognitive abilities. Usually, the training that Paul oversees contains 5 motions, the Heaven Six being one of them. They practice these motions as a part of their training.

During a fight or any kind of complex activity, the brain has to work extra hard to coordinate the movements. The training regimen of any martial art is to first discipline the mind and the body. Paul believes that he can train the minds of people suffering from various illnesses such as autism and Alzheimer’s and help them get better with cognitive augmentation.

Paul even shows footage of one of his students, Daniel, who is suffering from cerebral palsy, who he has been training for 4-5 years. Daniel has problems with his gait and balance, but while practicing a modified version of the Heavens Six, he can walk quite comfortably.  

This goes on to show the potential of Kali as a cognitive enhancing in the near future and how the Movement Revolution which Paul has been talking about in the video can truly change the world.  

Filipino Martial Arts from Cebu

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Cebu is believed to be the birthplace of Filipino Martial Arts. Today we are going to take a stroll through the city and learn a bit about the Balintawak School run by Bob Tabimina.

The Tabimina system is a technique which Bob developed by combining what he learned from the first Balintawak instructor and other martial arts such as judo and karate.

The Balintawak is quite unique as it involves close quarters combat with sticks. You use your hand to block incoming strikes while you keep striking with the stick. It sounds pretty easy but it won’t appear so once you see the masters in play.

The video serves as an introduction to the world of Bob Tabimina and his unique martial art involving the Tabimina System.

Escrima Sticks to Empty Hand

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If one were to rate the various martial arts styles across a spectrum, then Filipino Martial Arts will sit closest to perfection on that scale.

The reason behind this statement is evident from the fighting style. Traditional weapons that are used in FMA include sticks, knife, and hands. Interestingly, all of the above ‘weapons’ use the same movement and techniques.

It doesn’t matter if you have a stick or a knife. The weapons are looked upon as an extension of your body. You will be considered just as deadly with or without them since you will have a similar fighting style with all of them.

The short documentary aims to point out the fullness and completeness that encompasses FMA and is a must watch for anyone who is interested in learning the art.