Silat Walking, Shaking Hands, And Running Attacks

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Silat uses constant motion as a defensive tool. However, Silat also trains practitioners in how to use motion as an offensive weapon as well. Three important techniques used in Silat are walking attacks, shaking hands attacks, and running attacks. These attacks are used to get close to the opponent quickly, psychologically intimidate the attacker, and do a lot of damage as quickly as possible in order to bring any altercation to a quick, successful close.

Each of these attacks is aimed at different kinds of behaviors in an opponent. Walking attacks are best used when an opponent is standing still or blocking your path. Shaking hands attacks are effective if an opponent is moving around some, but not much. Running attacks are for those opponents who are moving around a lot and swinging there arms. If you think of how a boxer scrimmages, you get the idea as far as the
type of opponent that running attacks are for.

Walking style attacks consist of walking at the opponent with the intention of running them over. Even if you do not actually run the opponent down, this kind of attack will make the opponent feel like they are about to be run over. Instinctively, humans do not run over each other. If you're in a big crowd, you typically walk around people. However, for a walking attack, you will need to alter your usual pattern of behavior. Walk at your opponent and think about walking through them or over them. Swing your arms a lot as you walk. Intend to overwhelm your attacker. This is how a walking attack works.

A shaking hands attack adds something to a walking attack. As you are just about to reach, extend your hand as if you were about to shake hands with your opponent. If this attack works, your opponent will look down at your extended hand at just the right moment to allow you to distract them for just a moment so you can successfully attack. The key to this strategy is timing. If you extend your hand too early, the person you are attacking will have time to look at your hand and then look up to see the rest of your attack. So you must wait until just the right time.

Running attacks are like fast walking attacks. They intend to make the opponent feel quickly overwhelmed. However, running attacks are much faster and also allow you to get closer to your opponent and quickly pepper them with many devestating palm strikes. Since running strikes can be so fast, it is important to practice them carefully so that you and the people you are learning with can be safe.

The first drill to try in order to get thee feel of a running attack is to have a friend stand with their arms in front of them in a circle as if they were hugging a tree or holding a large bowl. Run at the person as fast as you can and run along one side of them hitting them with as many open palm strikes as you can. Hit them along their arms and then anywhere else you can reach. Try this on both sides of the person.

The next drill is a slow motion drill. Have your friend throw a punch at you but this time in slow motion. They should keep good punching form. Now do the same action you did before. In slow motion, run at the person and deluge them with as many open palm strikes as you can in as many places as you can. Keep this drill slow both for safety and so you can think about the attacks you would use. These two drills will safely give you the feel of a running attack.

Walking, shaking hands, and running attacks are all important and devastating Silat tools. Practice them, and if you need them, they will be ready for you to use.

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Richard Clear has 9428 articles online and 6 fans

Richard Clear has studied self defense for over 30 years both in China and America. He is a master practitioner of Kun Tao Silat and of Pentjak Silat. For more information or to read his blog, visit

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Silat Walking, Shaking Hands, And Running Attacks

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This article was published on 2010/10/06