Weapons Trade-offs

Cop with Old School Billy Club

Words of wisdom from Kuntawman in response to one of my posts:

There is not a man around who would let a trained fighting eskrimador hit him with a rattan stick, even a small one. so its not the size of the stick but what you can do with that stick. Each weapon has advantages and each one has weakness. The advantage of the eskrima stick is that we can hit with power and then hit with power again and again. The disadvantage is we cannot just hit anywhere to get an injury.

The advantage of the cane or baseball bat is that you can hit with power to anywhere, and get an injury. The disadvantage is your recovery time is too slow and you cannot land a powerful hit and then do it again right away and you will need more space.

Kuntawman here alludes to the balancing act involved when choosing a weapon. In my opinion, the short stick –especially the short rattan stick– is too light to be counted on to stop someone. Kuntawman talks about a “trained fighting eskrimador,” and I think this is an important distinction. GM Maranga hits very hard with a rattan stick, but on the other hand I’ve seen tanods ( something of a Philippine neighborhood rent-a-cop) with rattan sticks and thought, “I hope you’re not all that’s standing between me and the public, and some maniac with a knife.” A trained fighter can make the light stick work, but given lower levels of skill, I think the heavier club, like the old style police billy club, will be more effective for the average person.

Kuntawman is right again that the baseball bat presents trade-offs. While the bat is heavy enough to cause damage, it can be slow to launch and even slower to recover. While it has the advantage of reach, it can be awkward in close. The key is to choose the lightest bat possible, to practice blasting things, and to train to hit hard in close. One of my drills is to stand with my nose touching the heavy bag and launch into a flurry at contact distance.


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