orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby klonk on Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:58 pm

A related question is how you use a knife. God willing I won't, but I have been exposed to the Tueller Drill and that forever changed my ideas for the pessimistic.

There are two ways to use a knife: knife hand forward or knife hand back.

Knife hand back corresponds to orthodox boxing lead: The left hand's job is to clear and lead the way for the lethal attack: we are back to the Roman Legionnaire and his shield.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby MaartenSFS on Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:46 pm

Lately I have been putting all of my power into the left hand and using that as my primary weapon. I use a lot of different techniques, most using only the left hand or both hands but with the left delivering the strike. When using both, the left often parries first and then the right pins and the left strikes. When I use the left alone, the right moves around to guard. With my longish arms and long legs training my left hand to do most of the attacking means that I can reach the opponent quite easily.

I save striking with the right for when I am trying to overwhelm them with a flurry of attacks or for the occasional strike to the torso or groin, or if I change feet and it becomes my lead. I tend to also do a lot of swinging and whip-like attacks, which can easily be trained on both sides as well.

One of my attacks to the torso is the Bengquan. I think that stabbing someone with a knife is basically the same thing as a Bengquan, and one doesn't need to twist their waist as much as when trying to punch a face (one of the reasons that I don't like straight rights). There are plenty of ways to use a knife with the lead hand or with the rear hand, but I think that, by having my left hand being the main offensive weapon, putting a knife into my rear hand is just a perfect combination. It's just guarding/parrying/slashing whilst the left hand does all the work until an opening emerges and it seizes the opportunity. 8-)
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby chenyaolong on Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:44 am

I like a strong lead, seems better for suited for Mantis which is very strong hand dominant.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby cloudz on Wed Mar 22, 2017 3:31 am

If we are sticking to a striking style with sport combat in mind. I really don't think the strength differential is that meaningful.
But yes there is conventional wisdom and tradition at work in the martial arts.

If we widen that context to include wrestling and sub grappling, I think that staying with a dominant position doesn't serve you very well in the long haul.
Whilst I paid lip service to "both sides" in my earlier training I wasn't good enough with my natural stand up position which was orthodox; power hand to the rear.
It was only when I felt good enough that I could really let it go and go about getting my other side up to scratch.

Regards the dominant side arms/hands, I feel there are 3 factors to consider; power for hitting, strength in various directions and control. Rather than strength I usually find that it's the control part that can make things awkward. Writing with your less dominant side isn't hard or awkward because you aren't strong enough!
It's maybe stating the obvious but the power in your strikes has little to do with arm strength or even isolated arm power, or if it does then for those kind of strikes - if you use them - have other purposes as primary.

Most grappling and wrestling techniques for example use both hands in some way. At least in CIMA work even if you aren't using a hand to contact there should be some force, even if its to balance and or re-enforce what the other hand is up to. Practicing chinna/wrestling techniques both sides is a must for example, and all of us will have noted how some techniques feel better to us one side or other, dependent on what's going on.

As Wayne has pointed out the control factor shows itself a lot more when you come to handling a weapon of some kind. I don't currently do much of that, and haven't for a while, so I'll leave it to others here.

To sum up, I don't think it takes that much training to get similar levels of power in terms of striking, certainly close enough to not be that meaningful. Correct form, mechanics and good accuracy are better considerations. Breaking out of a habit makes things awkward, but the strength factor, or calling it strength I think might be misleading. It's more to do with how we are wired up, the more we stay in that groove the more ingrained and challenging it is to come out of or change, probably..

Having worked this way myself I would only encourage others to do the same and work to acheive a level you're happy with any which way round, as well as to work in the transitions from each and make those a part and parcel of your technique reportpoire/ shadow boxing.
Last edited by cloudz on Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:50 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby Steve James on Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:40 am

Hmm, afa knife use, imo, it's preferable to keep the knife in front of the body (i.e., all parts of the body). I use the inner (empty) hand to guard vitals. If my opponent keeps his blade out front, I'm going to be reluctant to put my empty hand out front. If I were he, I'd try to cut what's closest. Now, that's a general strategy. Tactically, giving up a limb as a sacrifice in order to get in close is certainly viable. It just usually ends up with a maimed limb. Yet, most unarmed people who survive knife attacks will typically have "defensive wounds" on their hands.

Anyway, much of Lee's knife theory was influenced by Kali, in which, knives are used with both hands and in many variations. And, all this depends on what the other guy has and is doing.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby kenneth fish on Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:56 am



Its a bullshit question. First, while the left hand jab may be used to test the opponents guard or set him up or annoy him, it is not necessarily weak. Ask anyone who has been hit with a left jab by an experienced boxer. Second: If you are talking about competitive sport, then you train for the sport using the tool set that the sport provides. If you are talking about self defense or more violent encounters, then the idea of a lead hand is not even in the picture.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby Steve James on Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:14 am

First, while the left hand jab may be used to test the opponents guard or set him up or annoy him, it is not necessarily weak.


Not to mention that the left hand could be the boxer's stronger punch, as in Joe Frazier, for ex. :)
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby everything on Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:16 am

Thanks, very fascinating considerations.

As to whether it's b.s., maybe it's just chat for the bar, but otoh, real competitors have used the strong hand lead in mma, so it doesn't seem like b.s. in sport, at least to me. quite the opposite because individual grappling/entering tactical preferences including vs. specific opponents may vary depending on this question. We would see some competitors change up the stance deliberately (I don't know all the reasons; hence am curious). OTOH, maybe most boxers consider it to be b.s. - would still like to know why (still hypothetical). Maybe they are biased against BL whereas many mma types consider him the godfather of their sport format.

agree about the self-defense, except the historical background stories and knife tangent are still fascinating to me.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby Steve James on Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:41 am

Well, yeah, if it's better in any way, why haven't all western boxers adopted it? At least, since Lee's time? Though, I don't think the old time trainers I've known even knew who he was.

Is it true that mma guys generally adopt a right hand lead ala BL?
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby everything on Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:10 pm

No i don't think that's true; I've read of fighters who did (sorry can't remember names right now but can search later). To me that would make more sense than in boxing since you have to account for many other scenarios and styles (yours and opponents). I think I recall Machida switching in-round (possibly due to injury) to good effect. Somewhat in the same vein, Cung Le, Anderson Silva, Jon Jones have all used a lead leg side kick to good effect, but not sure if they always did it strong side forward. Believe Le did and I think all looked at JKD theory for this and other ideas.

Here's another take on the question for mma: http://www.blackbeltmag.com/daily/mixed ... r-punches/
claiming 10% southpaw stance in boxing vs. 40% deliberate southpaw stance in mma.
Last edited by everything on Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby Steve James on Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:33 pm

That's really what I meant. I can't think of anyone in mma who has adopted a right hand lead for striking. Though there are lots of examples in boxing of natural southpaws who adopt an orthodox stance. And, its not unusual to see some boxers switching stances during a bout. But, watch Sugar Ray Robinson for an example of someone who does it well enough so that both hands are equally effective.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby Wanderingdragon on Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:51 pm

In Chinese Boxing there is no weak striking only the ability to change, hit or don't hit is all the same.
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby wayne hansen on Wed Mar 22, 2017 3:23 pm

If you want to study sword and shield study Espada Yi daga with a skillful practicioners
The weak hand holds the knife the strong one the stick
Bengamen Lima Lumer,s system electric scientific arris is based on Espada Yi daga
He uses the stick in his left hand with no knife,I don't know if he is naturally left handed,this brings up some interesting questions
I modern Arnis there are stick twirling exercises called rampilon that are quite often overlooked as warm ups or superficial
They are not
You start off twirling each hand seperatly on the down stroke then the up
Then together then one up one down at the same time
So one arm is doing a back twirl while the other forward
I remember when I first started doing this I thought it was impossible
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Some people in pushing hands go to the favourite side on all occasions ,there is nothing wrong with this if you are good enough,but it is like having no backhand in tennis
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby Steve James on Wed Mar 22, 2017 3:48 pm

The weak hand holds the knife the strong one the stick


Well, yeah, but I don't think "weak" is an appropriate distinction. But, the stick in espada y daga represents or replaces the sword (espada) for which the exercise is named. So, it's the longer weapon that is placed in the forward position, not necessarily the weaker one. Hmm, I think that Klonk would reaffirm that based on his knowledge of the Spanish (edit: and Italian) schools of medieval fencing. I specified Spanish because that's where the "espada". For ex.,
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Re: orthodox weak hand jab or JKD lead strong hand?

Postby MaartenSFS on Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:45 pm

You are giving Bruce Lee way too much credit. He did not invent the strong hand forward. Or anything, really. We should be grateful to him that he helped popularise Gongfu and openly taught foreigners, but he was far from the only one. He didn't invent mixing arts either, keeping what you like and tossing the rest. Maybe it wasn't prevalent in HK at the time, but that's how CMA evolved for thousands of years! He wasn't some kind of God. He put on a good show.
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