Kuntao-Silat Training on the Heavy Bag

Here’s a video of me doing some Kuntao-Silat on the heavy bag. Normally, you train these arts with a partner but that doesn’t always work out. So I started experimenting on the heavy bag and finding ways to practice these techniques alone. In this video, you can see some of my personal training. This means a number of things:

  • This is not an instructional video. I’m not teaching anything here, I’m training, I’m working on my personal development. So don’t read anything more in it than that.
  • It’s freestyle training, not working on a curriculum. So I’m going with what I feel like going instead of working on specific techniques. Not that I don’t do that, on the contrary: I practice the curriculum from these arts a lot more than I train freestyle. But in this clip, I’m just mixing things up a bit.
  • My main Silat and Kuntao teacher is Bob Orlando and you can see this in the way I perform the techniques. I do have some other influences in my training so if you see stuff that is different from what Bob does, that’s where it comes from. Again, I’m not doing curriculum work here, I flowing and mixing all those influences.

That said, here’s the video:


Some more information:

  • I work a lot from block left. The reason is simple: most people are right handed. So the odds of them using a right handed attack are pretty high. Then it only makes sense to practice defensive techniques against such attacks more often than other things.
  • Sometimes I pause slightly between techniques. That’s because something was off and I’m thinking about it so I can correct it on the next rep. When I work freestyle, that’s how I like to train. However, you won’t see me pause during the drill portions of this video. In those, the whole point is to avoid slowing down, even if you mess up.
  • You’ll often see me push or kick the bag to stop it. When it’s moving around too much, I do a quick technique to bring it back to a more stationary position. That technique is not part of my training at that time. It’s just something that avoids wasting too much time on stopping the bag from going all over the place. The more time I chase the bag, the less time I actually train what I want to work on. Hence the quick techniques in between reps.
  • The shearing elbows are sometimes modified. The way I practice them on the bag isn’t always exactly how I’d apply shearing elbows for real but I’m making due with the limitations imposed by the equipment. The shear should sometimes be smaller but because of the width of the heavy bag, I can’t get the correct distance between both arms and still land a good elbow strike. It’s not perfect, but it’s better than nothing.
  • This is just a snapshot and not my entire training. These two rounds are just samples and don’t represent anything. Had I filmed this on another day, you would have seen other techniques. So don’t draw any conclusions on what my training looks like in its entirety.
  • I make mistakes, lots of them. When I look at this video, I cringe at all the errors I have in my techniques. Sometimes it’s small things (WTH is my hand doing there instead of being up high?), sometimes it’s real important stuff (ARGH! I can’t believe I messed up like that.) That’s what happens when you train; it isn’t always pretty. It’s always a work in progress with warts and all sorts of other ugly stuff in there along with the good parts.

That’s pretty much it. I hope you enjoyed the video and can use some of what I showed for your own training.

Bob Orlando Wim Demeere Kuntao Silat

Bob Orlando and me at the Animal List BBQ. Picture by Big Bro Clint.



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  1. Good training video. Your “mistakes” (just like my own training mistakes :-) are acceptable, even desirable during training. Better to make them here, in training, than out there, in the street, in a real fight.

    Again, good “training” video.

  2. Chris Hanson says

    Hey Wim, love the vid. I wish I paid more attention to your stuff a while back man. I like how you freestyle on it from different strikes, defences, and combos. The movements seem to be simplistic and mostly gross-motor reactions. However, some of the combos you do are fine-motor, but I’m sure you utilzed them for “flow” purposes. I tend to do the same. In my freestyling session here for instance (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfQ5ZW5C9sM), I am simply working on flow, head movement, footwork, and cardio…going at 30-40%, just a warm up….open hand strikes, hammerfists, and a few low-line kicks for starters.
    I dig your stuff man….it’s getting my creative juices flowing, and you have inspired me to blog with simlar content.

  3. Hey Wim, check out my new blog bro.
    PS. You’ve inspired me to do this as well.

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