Wednesday, June 1, 2011

A Look at Filipino Martial Arts

Yesterday, Chris and I tried out a FMA (Filipino Martial Arts) class at a school close by to us in Surrey called Mendoza. We had been looking for something new to try that had daytime classes and this place seems to fit the bill. Being half Filipino and all, it's funny that it's taken all this time for me to give it a shot. To be fair though, there wasn't much in the way of FMA in Ottawa while I was living there.

Our first class went very well and we both enjoyed ourselves thoroughly. It was all empty handed techniques that day, but really fun, useful stuff. The style of movement is so different from what I've seen on other martial arts. The closest I've seen in another style was Wing Chun, at least for the flow of the movement, but it has its differences. For one thing, a lot of their movements are punctuated with slaps, which gives it a neat rhythmic quality that helps with hand flow.

Below is a sample of the hand flow from Filipino martial arts. We did a similar style of hand flow drill that focused more on elbow strikes.

As fun and useful as the empty handed stuff was, I'm looking forward to trying out the weapons work that FMA is famous for. The video below features the instructor from Mendoza doing free flow stick movements.

I consider myself lucky to live in the Vancouver area, which seems to have a wide variety of martial arts training available with all sorts of skilled instructors. I'm very much looking forward to learning more. :)