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Strikes

Characterized as a physical hit with any part of the body or an inanimate object, strikes are meant to cause pain, injury or death to an opponent. For martial artists, striking usually involves hitting with the legs or arms. For the legs, the practitioner strikes with his foot or knees. He also can stomp. For the arms, the practitioner uses his elbows, wrists, fists or fingers in a variety of ways.

Finger strikes can be executed by individual fingers or in combination for soft-tissue and vital strikes. Sometimes the practitioner will hold his hand in a clawlike grasp to rip at flesh or grab at soft tissues and vital points.

Closed-hand techniques include punches and hammerfist strikes. Various open-hand strikes like the spearhand target soft-tissue areas. Open-hand strikes like the knifehand, chop, cupped hand and palm strike instead attempt to bludgeon larger areas with powerful hits.

Depending on the martial art, the head, shoulders, butt and hips also can be used for striking an opponent.

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  1. Neck Attacks: Self-Defense Moves to Escape Chokes and Fight Back!

    Neck Attacks: Self-Defense Moves to Escape Chokes and Fight Back!

    The neck is vulnerable — plain and simple. Compared to the rest of the human body, it is remarkably weak in its structure — and yet it houses some of the body’s most vital pathways for circulation and respiration, not to mention outright support of the skull. Therefore, neck attacks
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  2. New Jean Jacques Machado Grappling DVDs Coming Soon! Set Will Feature Submission Grappling, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Mixed-Martial Arts Techniques!

    New Jean Jacques Machado Grappling DVDs Coming Soon! Set Will Feature Submission Grappling, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Mixed-Martial Arts Techniques!

    Based on their acclaimed best-selling book of the same name, Jean Jacques Machado and Jay Zeballos’ highly anticipated three-DVD set, The Grappler’s Handbook: Gi and No-Gi Techniques, serves as a martial arts multimedia companion wherein the two Brazilian jiu-jitsu masters demonstrate takedowns, chokes, holds and submissions in living color and
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  3. Krav Maga Expert Eyal Yanilov Shows You How to Defend Against a Knife Attack on the Ground

    Krav Maga Expert Eyal Yanilov Shows You How to Defend Against a Knife Attack on the Ground

    Eyal Yanilov and his krav maga defenses against variations of the front kick were featured as the cover story for the March 2011 issue of Black Belt (which happened to be the third of five special 50th Anniversary issues leading up to the June 2011 50th Anniversary Collector’s Issue, all
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  4. Richard Bustillo’s JKD Techniques: The Hammerfist Combo

    Richard Bustillo’s JKD Techniques: The Hammerfist Combo

    To help you become as successful as possible in your self-defense training, Richard Bustillo shared four of his favorite defensive jeet kune do techniques with us.
    Bustillo devoted much of his life to preserving and propagating the timeless teachings of Bruce Lee. Bustillo was one of the “Little Dragon’s” first followers
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  5. Are Your Favorite Self-Defense Techniques Overrated?

    Are Your Favorite Self-Defense Techniques Overrated?

    The first time you watched your favorite martial arts star wipe out a horde of bad guys with a string of jump-spinning back kicks on the silver screen, you probably were impressed. I know I was. On the other hand, you probably weren’t quite as inspired the first time you
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  6. Fight Smart in Close-Quarters Combat Using Wing Chun Techniques

    Fight Smart in Close-Quarters Combat Using Wing Chun Techniques

    In the martial arts, one school of thought holds that you should change your game to match your opponent’s. Example: If you’re a stand-up fighter and you’re facing a grappler, you should immediately switch into grappling mode. Problem is, that requires you to train to such an extent that each
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  7. Women’s Self-Defense Techniques That Actually Work

    Women’s Self-Defense Techniques That Actually Work

    I’m probably going to stir up some controversy here, but it needs to be said: Most women’s self-defense techniques learn are overrated. Unless your initial strike entails sticking your finger knuckle-deep in some guy’s eye or hitting him in the windpipe or groin, not much will have a significant effect
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  8. Systema Expert Discusses Self-Defense Biomechanics

    Systema Expert Discusses Self-Defense Biomechanics

    Systema expert Val Riazanov asks the tough question: At this point in your martial arts career, why should you consider changing the way you strike? What’s wrong with conventional methods? Plenty, says the systema instructor, who’s certified under Mikhail Ryabko. In this exclusive in-studio video, Riazanov discusses the application of
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  9. Systema Ballistic Strikes in Action!

    Systema Ballistic Strikes in Action!

    Systema expert Val Riazanov asks the tough question: At this point in your martial arts career, why should you consider changing the way you strike? What’s wrong with conventional methods? Plenty, says the systema instructor, who’s certified under Mikhail Ryabko. In this exclusive in-studio video, Riazanov demonstrates ballistic-striking action in
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  10. Muay Boran Technique and Accessories Demonstration

    Muay Boran Technique and Accessories Demonstration

    Col. Nattapong Buayam, a former Thai spec-ops hand-to-hand and weapons instructor, trained elite troops in Southeast Asia on the combative essence of krabi krabong (Thai traditional weaponry) and muay Boran (the forefather to muay Thai) for decades. The aggressive footwork and rapid-fire weapon attacks make it a nightmare to defend
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