Thursday, March 21, 2024

62: Toi-Gye first mountain block alternatives

One common application for the mountain block / W-block, first found in Toi-Gye, is an outside-trip throw performed by sliding down the opponent's leg with the "stomp" motion. This is closest to what is called an o soto otoshi in Judo. In Toi-Gye the first W-block follows the "hands-on-waist" position, which may be used to pull in an opponent before the throw.

Source: Freestyle Judo

This throw is a common application for the W-block, and I use it for two other patterns (Sam-Il and Gae-Baek). However, there are a couple other ways to interpret these two movements from Toi-Gye. I will share one below.

Alternative: Thrown then Stomp

An alternative interpretation of these two movements is that the hands-on-waist position is the throw, and the first mountain block is a stomp of your downed opponent. 

We use this application following the opening movement of Toi-Gye as a strike to the opponent's neck.

Inner-forearm block as a striking tool. Source: Traditional Taekwondo Ramblings

Having momentarily stunned our opponent, we put them into a headlock while pulling their arm, also called a chancellery. We turn 180-degrees CCW so that we are facing left, like in the form. From here we can perform a cross-buttocks or hip-wheel throw.
Source: Andy Allen demonstrating a cross-buttocks throw from Heian Sandan. Source Video
After this throw, you may stomp your downed opponent before disengaging. One example of this, a humerus stomp, is shown by Tom Hill in the gif below:
Humerus stomp after a cross buttocks throw. Source: Tom Hill's Karate Dojo
The arms of the W-block aren't doing anything in this case, except perhaps providing momentum for the stomp.

Alternative 2: Reverse headlock followed by knee strike

Yet another interpretation of the hands-on-waist position is a reverse headlock while pulling the opponent's right arm.
You may be able to execute this after the reverse punch in the previous step.

From here, it's easy to see how you can use the leg lift for the W-block as a knee strike to the back of the oppoonent, perhaps followed by the W-block as a downward elbow strike or as an attack to the opponent's elbow.

There you go: three applications for the first mountain block in Toi-Gye. Is there one you prefer, or something else?

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