Can anyone suggest to me some good partner training drills?

Benevolentbob

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My friend and I have decided to start training regularly together outside of class in my garage. Today was our first day and we did a little bit of heavy bag work, some pushups and the like, some basic sensitivity drills, and some light sparring. We already plan on getting some focus mitts and probably a kick shield. The problem is that after an hour or so we quickly ran out of things to do. Does anyone have some good martial arts related drills we could do? We were also thinking about getting some medicine balls and trying to find some partner drills we can do with those as well. If anyone has any suggestions it would be greatly appreciated as would any explanation as to why you use that drill or exercise or a video of it being performed.
 

jks9199

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Do you do partner drills in class? If so -- do them.

How long have you been training?

Otherwise, your creativity is your only limit. You might consider buying Rory Miller's e-book Drills: Training for Sudden Violence; it's got some interesting exercises if you give them a chance. Start with his One-Step Drill...
 
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Benevolentbob

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What discipline do you guys study?
I've got a background in Kempo, Judo, and Tae Kwon Do. I believe he has done Kempo and Judo. I'm currently searching for a school that will fit my needs better but he is still training at the Kempo school.

@jks9199
I've trained on & off my whole life and my friend/training partner is going on about two years. The school where I used to go and he still attends mainly focuses on kata and "defensive maneuvers". There really wasn't much drilling and hardly any sparring at all, which is why I no longer attend classes there. I like Rory Miller so I'll have to check that book out. I would be up for doing some Judo drills except that our space is rather confined and falling on concrete doesn't appeal to us. Safety first as they say.

Thanks again for the replies guys, all input is appreciated!
 
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frank raud

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Uchikomi for every throw you know,left and right side. 10 times each, lift but dont throw. Groundwork flow drills moving from one position to another, this can be done slowly on the concrete without anyone getting hurt. Combine these with your heavy bag workout and medicine balls,, can keep you busy for hours, if you are up to it.
 

jks9199

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I've got a background in Kempo, Judo, and Tae Kwon Do. I believe he has done Kempo and Judo. I'm currently searching for a school that will fit my needs better but he is still training at the Kempo school.

@jks9199
I've trained on & off my whole life and my friend/training partner is going on about two years. The school where I used to go and he still attends mainly focuses on kata and "defensive maneuvers". There really wasn't much drilling and hardly any sparring at all, which is why I no longer attend classes there. I like Rory Miller so I'll have to check that book out. I would be up for doing some Judo drills except that our space is rather confined and falling on concrete doesn't appeal to us. Safety first as they say.

Thanks again for the replies guys, all input is appreciated!

You've got a background in Judo, Kempo, and TKD and you've never done partner drills. Blunt question: does your background in any of them extend beyond introductory classes? Judo is hugely done in partner drills -- though I understand not wanting to do falls on concrete. As I've gotten older, I'm less inclined to do that myself... :D TKD has the various step sparring exercises, and I know that most forms of Kempo include partner drills.

Here's a simple starting drill. Take fighting stances facing each other. You throw a punch at your partner, he defends. Reset. Trade roles; he's going to punch you. You defend. After you do this a couple times -- change the punch. Or kick... You can either use a scripted defense (e.g., you throw a straight punch to the face, he side steps, using an outside block, and counter punches) or you can change the defense each time. The puncher is trying to throw a perfect, clean technique -- with no telegraph. It should be aimed at a target, and at realistic ranges. In other words -- if the defender doesn't respond to it properly, they should be hit. You can start slow to develop comfort and pick up the speed and force as you get more comfortable with it. Do this with each of your techniques, and you've got quite a lot to do. Add combinations or responses from a neutral stance, and it goes further and further.
 

mook jong man

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I don't know how beneficial this will be to you not being a Wing Chun person , but you might as well give it a go anyway.
This exercise could be considered a very primitive type of Chi Sau.

Get into your fighting stance and hold your arms up , have your arms bent at an angle of approximately 110 degrees.
Your partner will grab both your wrists and then proceed to push and pull your arms violently in all directions , he should be doing his best to off balance you.

Your objective is to try and minimise this disruption to your balance and try not to get thrown around by your partner.
Try and maintain the angles in your arms don't let the partner collapse them.

But don't be rigid , let your arms have a spring like quality and keep the shoulders relaxed , your arms can move up or down to redirect his force and the elbow can go out but try and keep your wrists close to the centreline.

With your legs , relax your thighs and sink your weight down into your stance.
Mentally focus your force towards his centreline for the duration of the whole exercise.
Don't attempt to break out of his wrist grabs , that is not the point of the exercise.
This exercise teaches you to stay relaxed , absorb and channel incoming force down to the floor so that your stance is not affected by outside force.

Next one you can try is one armed sparring , both you and your partner face each other at close range in your fighting stance with your guards up.
You and your partner each extend your right arm out at the same angle as the last exercise with the wrist on your centreline.
Make contact with each other arms on the outside of the wrist , from that contact point you will both try to defend and attack using only the one arm.
Make sure you train your other arm and also work from other configurations like starting from inside his arm as well.
Try to keep your movements minimal and keep your wrist on the centreline , when you feel a loss of contact strike through.

Of course you are not going to do these exercises as well as a Wing Chun person , you don't have the correct stance and structure , but I think that you will still find them useful and rather enjoyable.
 

MaxiMe

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You've got a background in Judo, Kempo, and TKD and you've never done partner drills. Blunt question: does your background in any of them extend beyond introductory classes? Judo is hugely done in partner drills TKD has the various step sparring exercises, and I know that most forms of Kempo include partner drills.

Here's a simple starting drill. Take fighting stances facing each other. You throw a punch at your partner, he defends. Reset. Trade roles; he's going to punch you. You defend. After you do this a couple times -- change the punch. Or kick... You can either use a scripted defense (e.g., you throw a straight punch to the face, he side steps, using an outside block, and counter punches) or you can change the defense each time. The puncher is trying to throw a perfect, clean technique -- with no telegraph. It should be aimed at a target, and at realistic ranges. In other words -- if the defender doesn't respond to it properly, they should be hit. You can start slow to develop comfort and pick up the speed and force as you get more comfortable with it. Do this with each of your techniques, and you've got quite a lot to do. Add combinations or responses from a neutral stance, and it goes further and further.

Not sure of other MA's or schools. I know for a fact we do a lot of partner drills in our TKD. One step sparring like JK describes above. buddy sit ups and pushups. kick drills. I kick/punch partner kicks/punch, just touch the Gi. Good for distance. Sparring at slow speeds and no or light contact. Just use your imagination the possibilties are endless.
 

Bill Mattocks

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Backside of your kata, assuming you have any. Best drills out there.

When doing kata, many people complain that they don't know why they are doing what they are doing. Or they are told what the applications are, but they don't 'see' it. Or they want to explore more into the bunkai of their kata.

One person does the kata. The other person provides the reason to do the kata. They attack when the kata is blocking, they defend when the kata is punching or kicking.

First; you learn to do kata with power and form, because it would REALLY WORK. I can't tell you how many graceful but completely ineffective blocks I've seen in kata work. Yes, it's pretty. No, it would not stop a punch.

Second, you begin to live in the kata. Your form better be correct, or you're going to eat a punch or a kick.

Third, you begin to see applications (bunkai) that may not have been described to you before. This is the 'secret' part everybody talks about. It's not really secret, it's just forgotten by many.

Just a suggestion. I think doing the backside of the kata is great partner training.
 
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Benevolentbob

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You've got a background in Judo, Kempo, and TKD and you've never done partner drills. Blunt question: does your background in any of them extend beyond introductory classes? Judo is hugely done in partner drills -- though I understand not wanting to do falls on concrete. As I've gotten older, I'm less inclined to do that myself... :D TKD has the various step sparring exercises, and I know that most forms of Kempo include partner drills.

Here's a simple starting drill. Take fighting stances facing each other. You throw a punch at your partner, he defends. Reset. Trade roles; he's going to punch you. You defend. After you do this a couple times -- change the punch. Or kick... You can either use a scripted defense (e.g., you throw a straight punch to the face, he side steps, using an outside block, and counter punches) or you can change the defense each time. The puncher is trying to throw a perfect, clean technique -- with no telegraph. It should be aimed at a target, and at realistic ranges. In other words -- if the defender doesn't respond to it properly, they should be hit. You can start slow to develop comfort and pick up the speed and force as you get more comfortable with it. Do this with each of your techniques, and you've got quite a lot to do. Add combinations or responses from a neutral stance, and it goes further and further.

Judo offers a lot of nice drills we could use but we both feel the environment isn't safe. Perhaps we could do some groundwork as frank raud suggested. I did Tae Kwon Do growing up and they pretty much just had us focus on forms or improving our kicks with those paddles. The Kempo place was very similar in that the focus was on forms and defensive maneuvers (essentially mini forms). I can only remember sparring once. The same school had a Judo program which is where we both draw our experience from. That class's focus was on exercise and practicing throws with the occasional randori. I quickly realized that the Kempo place was not what I was looking for and left. These past experiences combined with schoolwork are why I haven't signed up somewhere else yet. Most of the MA schools I check out near where I live are very similar in training methods to the ones I described to you unless I want to join an MMA gym which isn't really my thing. Thanks for the drill suggestion, it reminds me a lot of the one-step sparring Mas Oyama mentions in one of his books.

@mook jong man
Thanks for the helpful post. I actually have a strong and growing interest in Wing Chun (you may remember me asking about places to train a while back on the WC forum) so Chi Sau is something we've been working on. I was taught the basic of it by my friend that used to host a sparring night at his house although he called it sticky hands. You explain it in a lot more detail than he did though and I can tell that ti will be very useful. Your input is very appreciated.

@Bill Mattocks
Thanks for the response. I definitely understand where you're coming from given your Karate background and would possibly agree with you except that I don't find the kata from the Kempo school I was at particularly useful, it's part of why I left. Many of the movements are flamboyant and unnecessary, most are completely unrealistic, and their weapon defenses within the forms would quickly get you killed. I've seen kata from other schools of Kempo or Karate and see the use in them but for the most part the ones I was taught feel fairly shallow and useless. There are some solid defensive maneuvers but overall I'm glad to leave the school behind as much as possible.
 
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Benevolentbob

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You seem to have had a Strange Experience with Martial Arts, Good Sir :)
Heh, well to me it seems to be the area I live in. There are a lot of people with high incomes who don't usually have to worry about fighting or defending themselves and don't have much of an interest in the martial arts as a whole. As a result most TMA places tend to act more like daycare centers than places of learning. The adult classes are usually sparsely populated and cater towards a feel-good atmosphere that ends up feeling more like role-playing than anything else. As a result, if you really want to learn how to fight or defend yourself you're pretty much stuck with MMA unless you want to make the commute into the city which as a college student with limited time and money I don't have that opportunity.
 
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Cyriacus

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Heh, well to me it seems to be the area I live in. There are a lot of people with high incomes who don't usually have to worry about fighting or defending themselves and don't have much of an interest in the martial arts as a whole. As a result most TMA places tend to act more like daycare centers than places of learning. The adult classes are usually sparsely populated and cater towards a feel-good atmosphere that ends up feeling more like role-playing than anything else. As a result, if you really want to learn how to fight or defend yourself you're pretty much stuck with MMA unless you want to make the commute into the city which as a college student with limited time and money I don't have that opportunity.
Youre working with what You have Available then - Fair Enough, in this Context.
 

Mark Lynn

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How soon do you plan on getting a kick shield and or focus mitts? I have a lot of drills that are just basic boxing, kick boxing, and various off shoots that I could post but you need some basic equipment to do them.

What are your goals in training with your friend, i.e. conditioning, more self defense related, improve your sparring skills, etc. etc.? That might help narrow the type of drills posted in order to help you.
 
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Benevolentbob

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How soon do you plan on getting a kick shield and or focus mitts? I have a lot of drills that are just basic boxing, kick boxing, and various off shoots that I could post but you need some basic equipment to do them.

What are your goals in training with your friend, i.e. conditioning, more self defense related, improve your sparring skills, etc. etc.? That might help narrow the type of drills posted in order to help you.

I have to wait until I'm done with holiday shopping until I'll have some money to spend on things like focus mitts. The focus is on conditioning and sparring but self defense is important too.
 

Cyriacus

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I have to wait until I'm done with holiday shopping until I'll have some money to spend on things like focus mitts. The focus is on conditioning and sparring but self defense is important too.
Well, just to ensure, though to some im stating the Obvious, but just in case;
Hand Wraps without Gloves = Better Wrist Conditioning against anything Heavy.
Bare Knuckles with Less Force = Better Knuckle Conditioning. (These arent the Relevant ones, these are a leadup)
Kicking with Ankle Supports = A Good Idea if Youre going to be doing alot of Conditioning.
 

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One that I've enjoyed doing is clasping wrists, then taking turns doing 10 roundhouse kicks (preferably head high, but up to you). Partner provides a hand target for light contact (and to protect his head). Practices targeting without worrying about the balance, since your partner provides it. Then do other side. Could play with the drill (double kicks, different heights, etc.).

Partner, as well as providing a target, and keeping their guard up, also should critique the kick (off target, too much lean, dropping hands while kicking, not turning the base foot enough, and so on).

Even if you don't like high kicks (in a self-defense context for instance), practicing them increases your power, speed, and accuracy on the low ones.
 
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Benevolentbob

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Thanks Nomad and Cyriacus. I didn't know that about the different kinds of hand conditioning. Also we will certainly give the kicking drill a try.
 

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