Originally, I was not a fan a regular “blocking” as you see in many martial arts. I thought it was too passive, opened you up for a counter strike and kept you on the defensive.
Then I started to work a block and simultaneous punch as a combination which eradicated my previous complaints. Let’s take a look at the basic premise and technique, and then we’ll circle back around how it calmed my critiques.
First, picture a circle around your body, as in a 360 degree line of defense where your right arm takes care of your upper right side, all the way down to your lower right side. Your left arm does the same, but on the left side.
There are only so many attack angles a person could throw a punch at you, and your two arms can cover any one of them. This basic blocking is nothing new, but few martial arts use a block and punch in combination.
Therefore, as one of your arms blocks, you can deliver a quick straight on punch at the same time. Regardless of an attacker throwing a jab, cross, hook or upper cut, we simply respond with a block, mixed in with a short jab right to the face.
It is understood that one simple, quick punch thrown from a short distance won’t knock people out, but it will interrupt their attack, and put them back on their heels where we can throw counter strikes such as the combinations below.
As I stated before, using these moves in combination, is a fast form of defense which takes minimal training and accounts for any strike an opponent can bring. Why I like this is because it takes care of the main concerns I had from just blocking. It is not passive at all, rather it is very offensive. It does not necessarily leave you open for a counter attack because both of your arms are either blocking or striking, cutting off most pathways for the attacker to strike you.
When training this, my suggestion is to start slow, and have a partner throw very predictable slow punches at your face in a set pattern. As you improve, have your partner deviate and mix the pattern up. The final stage is to increase the speed until you can do this combo 3-5 times in a row successfully.