Tuesday, August 28, 2018

21: Ul-Ji second set

For the second set in Ul-Ji, we perform a double X-block combination. This combination originally comes from the kata Heian Godan, where its standard explanation is to block a kick and then block a punch. But it has several other hidden applications to explore. The set is:
  • Left front stance X-fist pressing block
  • In place, X-knifehand rising block
  • In place, right hand inward knifehand strike, placing left palm on right inner-elbow
Here we begin from the opening technique described in the previous post. Now we assume that the technique didn't work; we still have a hold of the opponent's left arm with our left fist, but their head is free. To prevent the opponent from turning towards us, we step backwards again and pull down their left arm. At the same time, we push down their left shoulder with our right fist. This creates the X-fist pressing block.

Doodle of the technique
Steps 2 and 3 in the above diagram are down simultaneously in the pattern, but I break them down here so you can see the technique. After pushing down the opponent's left shoulder, wrap your right arm under it and lift. This creates a hammer lock. At the same time, slap across the opponent's face with your left rising knifehand. Besides being a distracting strike to our opponent, this also turns their face away from you, exposing the back of their neck. Notice how the right arm stays on top of the left in both X-block techniques.

Finally, with the back of their neck exposed, we finish with an inward strike. This should knockout your opponent. Your left palm comes back to over your opponent's left shoulder for control. Although the set ends with the inward strike, from here you can strengthen the shoulder lock using both palms to push the shoulder down, and then spin to take the opponent to the floor if they are not knocked out.

Sunday, August 19, 2018

20: Ul-Ji opening

Ul-Ji has a unique ready position. It has no formal name, and to my knowledge appears in no other taekwondo pattern or karate kata. Combined with the two opening moves it comprises a simple application: a reverse head throw.

Source: Funker Tactical
The motion begins from a cross-hands position. You then grab the arm or shoulder of the opponent with one fist and their face your the other fist. Step backwards and forcefully uncross your arms, forcing the opponent to turn around. From here, pull them to the floor. The position of the hands in Ul-Ji suggests that we are grabbing under their triceps, specifically their left triceps, meaning we grab their face with our right fist. The opponent may escape this throw by ducking their head under our grip, in which case we follow with other sets from Ul-Ji.

Those of you who have studied patterns might note that this technique can be represented in other ways, usually with the standard low block. Another technique which often represents this throw is the "low opening block", what in ITF is called "Closed Ready Stance D" in Eui-Am. In fact, the ending of Eui-Am can represent the same throw.
Application for ending of Eui-Am.
Image sources:ITF Radix, Funker Tactical

This throw also exists in Silat, where it is called tarik kepala.