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Thread: Returning Serpent

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    Default Returning Serpent

    This is an IKCA technique that I really like. I thought I'd put it up here for discussion. I PM'd CC and he thought this would be a good place to post IKCA techs.

    3) Returning Serpent:
    i/s def > a right straight punch
    Natural stance, opponent throws a right straight punch to your face:

    1. Step back into a RNB while executing a right inward block. Immediately followed by a looping back-fist to the attacker’s right temple.

    2. Shift/pivot into right lunge stance and execute a left vertical punch to the ribs. The right fist goes by your left temple as a check.


    3. Pivot again into a RNB and execute another right back-fist to the face.

    Comments? Thoughts?

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by thedan View Post
    1. Step back into a RNB while executing a right inward block. Immediately followed by a looping back-fist to the attacker’s right temple.
    In practice, I found that hooking the block was most effective. Hooking the block takes advantage of his forward momentum to pull him off ballance and into your striking range, even though you steped back. It's also possible/probable that the block will land as the striking arm starts to pull back, in which case the hook is really effective. The back knuckle strike may require a foot maneuver if this is the case.

    Make sure that you nail the intitial block first. Make it a good, solid block. Don't loop the inward block. Straight in, with good indexing, and a short hook the instant contact is made.

    The initial block cancels his depth, and the back fist loops and striks as quickly.

    Dan C
    Last edited by thedan; 09-17-2006 at 11:26 AM.

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    This is my favorite IKCA organge belt technique. =-)
    It is very much like "Alternating Maces." I have a student that actually refers to it as "Alternating Maces + One". LOL. Anyway, it's still pretty fresh in my mind having just gotten certified at this level through the IKCA.

    The initial block in step 1 utilizes a "looping inward block". It differs slightly from a traditional inward block in that upon contact with the opponents incoming weapon (right step through punch or jab) you arc your arm inward. The reason is to utilize frictional pull against the opponents arm and in effect bring thier head in towards the follow up back knuckle applying the concept of borrowed force to add to the strength and effectiveness of the strike.

    In step two you execute the lunge stance when delivering the reverse punch. I like the lunge stance better than the traditional forward bow because I've found it gives a little more penetration and allows for better mobility. And, just as in "Alternating Maces" you check the left side of your head with your right hand to avoid even an inadvertant strike from the opponent.

    Here's how I have it written in my personal notes:
    Returning Serpent (defense against a right straight punch)
    • Step back into a right neutral bow executing a right looping inward block
    • Execute a right back knuckle to attacker’s head
    • Transition into a forward lunge stance executing a reverse punch to attacker’s ribs
    • Transition back into a right neutral bow executing a right back knuckle to attacker’s head
    * Principles: frictional pull, angle of incidence, anatomical positioning, borrowed force

    I'm sure bdparsons and/or florida_kenpo could offer more insight. =-)
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." – Charles A. Beard

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by thedan View Post
    2. Shift/pivot into right lunge stance and execute a left vertical punch to the ribs. The right fist goes by your left temple as a check.

    3. Pivot again into a RNB and execute another right back-fist to the face.
    The "overskill" part of this technique. Probably won't be necessary, but it is a good thing just in case. And teaches some good moves.

    The shot to his ribs is the first power strike, so it requires a good stance change. The lunge stance is a cross between a close kneel and a transitional forward bow. A good, quick maneuver that gets a lot of distance and power into a trailing hand strike. His reaction to this strike will bring his temple into range for your next strike.

    I like to target the temple or point of the jaw with my second (returning) back knuckle.

    For the punch to ribs, if he has a lot of forward momentum, or you don't need the extra distance, may be more effective if you lock out a good forward bow instead of a lunge.

    Dan C

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    CC, pretty close to what I do.

    Quote Originally Posted by Celtic_Crippler View Post
    The initial block in step 1 utilizes a "looping inward block". It differs slightly from a traditional inward block in that upon contact with the opponents incoming weapon (right step through punch or jab) you arc your arm inward.
    I do a proper inward block, with a well anchored elbow. But I add a hooking motion to the arm as contact is made. Stance solidifies about a quarter beat late so the power is applied to the "hook". Is this similar to your "looping" block?

    In step two you execute the lunge stance when delivering the reverse punch. I like the lunge stance better than the traditional forward bow because I've found it gives a little more penetration and allows for better mobility.
    I love that lunge stance, for the reasons you state. It's still good to know the full forward bow, in case this attack is launched with a lot of forward momentum. But that lunge is usually the way to go. Quick, mobile, and a lot of depth, like you said.

    And, just as in "Alternating Maces" you check the left side of your head with your right hand to avoid even an inadvertant strike from the opponent.
    You must do AM different than me, but the check at the right side of the head is a good point. I missed that.

    * Principles: frictional pull, angle of incidence, anatomical positioning, borrowed force

    I'm sure bdparsons and/or florida_kenpo could offer more insight. =-)
    Hope so, but that is a lot of insight there already. This tech uses a lot of torque, and the initial block makes excellant use of backup mass. Also, if your block cathes his arm on the withdrawal, you'd better have some good marriage of gravity involved. A lot of speed as well in 2 & 3.

    Speaking of speed, I understand that the IKCA doesn't whip their back knuckle strikes at the wrist (I remember GM LeRoux talking about that on the tape). Can you elaborate on that? You've probably done it both ways, having prior Kenpo experience. What are your thoughts on this?

    Dan C

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Every time I've executed this technique I've had to "pull" the reverse punch, and even then there's contact. If executed properly, you can get plenty of penetration on it. As you step back and execute the looping inward block, you are in effect pulling your opponent back with you and upsetting their balance in the process.

    I've found many targets while practicing this technique. Most times I go temple-ribs-behind the ear. Sometimes I go behind the ear-ribs-ribs. Or ribs-ribs-ribs. Or temple-temple-temple. Just depends. I just know I want 3 good shots in there. =-)
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." – Charles A. Beard

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by Celtic_Crippler View Post
    I've found many targets while practicing this technique. Most times I go temple-ribs-behind the ear. Sometimes I go behind the ear-ribs-ribs. Or ribs-ribs-ribs. Or temple-temple-temple. Just depends. I just know I want 3 good shots in there. =-)
    Lot of possible change ups with this tech- one of the reasons I like it!

    I've used it in sparing. One good application is just as an initial attack. Move left as you attack his guard, and the speed, control, and disrupting factor, makes this a good entry/bridging technique. One good changeup used like this is to move left and block, then replace the right block with a left check and strike his ribs with the back knuckle. Vertical punch with the right to his face from point of origin, then vertical back knuckle any available target on his head/face. Done with continuouse motion, this is unbelievably quick and powerful throughout the entire tech! Unlimmited change up possibilities here!

    Dan C

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    It looks like this technique would be best used in tournament application.

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by Celtic_Crippler View Post
    It is very much like "Alternating Maces." I have a student that actually refers to it as "Alternating Maces + One".

    The initial block in step 1 utilizes a "looping inward block". It differs slightly from a traditional inward block in that upon contact with the opponents incoming weapon (right step through punch or jab) you arc your arm inward. The reason is to utilize frictional pull against the opponents arm and in effect bring thier head in towards the follow up back knuckle applying the concept of borrowed force to add to the strength and effectiveness of the strike.
    I thought Alternating Maces when I first read it and then saw your post.

    I think instead of a looping inward, I would just do a hammering inward, as opposed to a thrusting inward. A hammering inward will bring their head forward for sure.

    Is a lunge another way of saying 'forward bow'? I was a little unclear about that in the definition.

    Nice variation of Alternating Maces though.

    --Amy
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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by jfarnsworth View Post
    It looks like this technique would be best used in tournament application.
    Yes, it is a good sparing technique, as I said.

    I think the IKCA has a philosophy of making their techniques work for many applications (as does EPAK, but the IKCA emphasizes it more, I believe). This tech really works beter from outside a left strike. It also works against a right straight push, left cross push, double push, left or right lapel grab, ...

    In a fight, it can be effective with apropriate modifications. I've worked it from a clinch, with changes, and it performed well. I think the idea is to learn the base tech, then learn to use it on as many different scenarios as you can. They are really big on formulating, borrowing, and technique flow also. Maybe some of the IKCA folk could give some more insight to their philosophy and applications.

    Dan C

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by amylong View Post
    I think instead of a looping inward, I would just do a hammering inward, as opposed to a thrusting inward. A hammering inward will bring their head forward for sure.
    That's why I use a hook- it combines the effects of both, as well as a rake, without having to chamber a hammering strike.

    Is a lunge another way of saying 'forward bow'?
    Think of it as a transitional forward bow with more bend in the knee, and a little bounce- a little more "alive". Or, a really high close kneel, with a lot of pivot instead of drop.

    Dan C

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by amylong View Post
    I thought Alternating Maces when I first read it and then saw your post.

    I think instead of a looping inward, I would just do a hammering inward, as opposed to a thrusting inward. A hammering inward will bring their head forward for sure.



    --Amy
    I thought of Alternating Maces as well. I like this adaptation, for a punch, though I don't see it working well for a 2 handed push, you still have to worry about checking the opponent's hands.

    Also I think you're right about using a hammering inward being more likely to bring the opponent's head forward (especially if used with a frictional pull) however economy of motion takes precedence. If my hand is low I'm going to execute a thrusting inward, rather than loop around for a hammering; vice versa if my hand is high.

    Working from a thrusting inward, I would use perhaps a diagonal raking back knuckle strike (traveling up the opponent's face) in place of a snapping back knuckle strike.
    Holding onto anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. - Buddha

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by dubljay View Post
    I thought of Alternating Maces as well. I like this adaptation, for a punch, though I don't see it working well for a 2 handed push, you still have to worry about checking the opponent's hands.

    Also I think you're right about using a hammering inward being more likely to bring the opponent's head forward (especially if used with a frictional pull) however economy of motion takes precedence. If my hand is low I'm going to execute a thrusting inward, rather than loop around for a hammering; vice versa if my hand is high.

    Working from a thrusting inward, I would use perhaps a diagonal raking back knuckle strike (traveling up the opponent's face) in place of a snapping back knuckle strike.

    I agree with you on all counts. If your hands are low, you have to move from POO (hmmm, that acronym doesn't look so good somehow)

    I agree too about the raking backknuckle. Otherwise, you'd have to re-chamber.

    --Amy
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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    I was going to say that I didn't think the vertical back knuckle would work. Too much chance of having your arm traped or craned/pulled in. But you got me thinking, and I'm not so sure.

    If done with a quick shuffle in and the vertical punch is simultaneously thrown to his face, it might work! The raking back knuckle would be the first part of, and flow into, a vertical outward block, which would check his right.And, the high strike with the left checks his right. Is this what you are envisioning? I'll have to try that one out and see...

    Couple of other things I thought of that this tech teaches:

    Returning motion (how the heck did I miss that one)- the back knuckles are sort of a "double returning motion". they don't quite follow the same path out and back in, though close. There is a contrast here with the left vertical punch, which is a reversing motion in that it is the same path out andback.

    Contouring- you follow his striking arm over and under to the targets.

    Working open triangles- this tech is a lesson in trigonometry! Too much to even list!

    Dan C

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by thedan View Post
    I was going to say that I didn't think the vertical back knuckle would work. Too much chance of having your arm traped or craned/pulled in. But you got me thinking, and I'm not so sure.

    If done with a quick shuffle in and the vertical punch is simultaneously thrown to his face, it might work! The raking back knuckle would be the first part of, and flow into, a vertical outward block, which would check his right.And, the high strike with the left checks his right. Is this what you are envisioning? I'll have to try that one out and see...

    Couple of other things I thought of that this tech teaches:

    Returning motion (how the heck did I miss that one)- the back knuckles are sort of a "double returning motion". they don't quite follow the same path out and back in, though close. There is a contrast here with the left vertical punch, which is a reversing motion in that it is the same path out andback.

    Contouring- you follow his striking arm over and under to the targets.

    Working open triangles- this tech is a lesson in trigonometry! Too much to even list!

    Dan C


    Exelent point about getting your arm trapped with the raking back knuckle. I was thinking about being on the outside of a left punch. But working on the inside of a right, the raking back knuckle isnt the best of ideas. Good catch.
    Holding onto anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. - Buddha

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by dubljay View Post
    Exelent point about getting your arm trapped with the raking back knuckle. I was thinking about being on the outside of a left punch. But working on the inside of a right, the raking back knuckle isnt the best of ideas. Good catch.

    ooops. I can't tell my left from my right either. I was thinking left too.

    So, uh, nm.
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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by dubljay View Post
    Exelent point about getting your arm trapped with the raking back knuckle. I was thinking about being on the outside of a left punch. But working on the inside of a right, the raking back knuckle isnt the best of ideas. Good catch.
    Quote Originally Posted by amylong View Post
    ooops. I can't tell my left from my right either. I was thinking left too.
    Well, POO... I have that a lot myself! I tried it in the air, but no partner.

    The raking back knuckle to vert outward works if your first move is back and to the left as you do a thrusting inward block. Hit a lunge stance with that block, as one of the primary bennifits of a lunge is to allow you to bounce off the ball of the stepping (left) foot and quickly move forward.

    As you shuffle/spring forward off this block/lunge move, replace the right block with a left outward parry/check as you back knuckle/rake to the vert outward with your right. You are still in a lunge, or a forward bow if you prefer.

    Pivot into a right neutral bow as you hammer his right with your right, and run the technique from there.

    Gives sort of a Wing Chun flavor to the technique.

    Again, this is all visualization/conjecture, as I don't have a partner handy to try this on.

    Dan C

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    For legal aspects could someone please contact Vic LeRoux and or Chuck Sullivan to make sure we are allowed to have written break downs of their techniques online. As many people will notice we will do not have any of the Tracy's techniques written out on the site because of the legal ramifications.
    Quality outweighs quantity every time.

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    The techniques are broken down on the Chinese Kenpo Technical Forum for anyone to see and they are well aware of that, but I will send Vic an e-mail to make sure they are cool with it.
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." – Charles A. Beard

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    Default Re: Returning Serpent

    Quote Originally Posted by Celtic_Crippler View Post
    The techniques are broken down on the Chinese Kenpo Technical Forum for anyone to see and they are well aware of that, but I will send Vic an e-mail to make sure they are cool with it.
    There was a gentleman by the name of mark Collins a few years ago who got in trouble for posting written breakdowns along with pictures. I would rather be safe than sorry and not generate any ill will with teh IKCA.
    Quality outweighs quantity every time.

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