My elbow hurts!

Argus

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I know what you're thinking! Nope, I don't mean tennis elbow or anything of the sort, and my joints are in good shape.

I just thought I'd share a very embarrassing and occasionally painful bad habit that I wonder if anyone else has.

So...

I started up my training again recently, and am getting reacquainted with some of my old bad habits. To be specific, I have a bad habit of hitting myself in the left elbow on occasion, especially when swinging a single stick at full speed, and transitioning from an open horizontal strike to a closed (back hand) horizontal strike -- strikes 3 to 4 in most systems. It occasionally happens with upward figure eight strikes as well.

It only happens when I swing fast/hard. Most of the time, I'm practicing in the house, and therefore swinging in a rather careful and controlled manner. When I occasionally put power into it though, this happens. So, it seems this habit isn't as self correcting as one would hope... Maybe I just need to find a safer place to swing a stick.

Anybody else do this? I'd hate to imagine what might happen if I were using a blade...
 

Alan0354

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I hit my knee two or three times!!! Just glancing only. I am trying to swing more compact for tighter space, that's why.
 

Buka

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Might be a good idea to slow up the speed until you get into your old training shape. And you know if you don't address the elbow issue......it's gonna' getcha.
 

isshinryuronin

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Try to watch a video of yourself. Hard to see problems in real time going fast and hard. Obviously, you have some (probably slight) problem with your form. Maybe you're over-bending the wrist of the stick hand, or maybe your guard/checking arm's elbow is sticking out too much. Adding that power and speed seems to be throwing your form off a bit. A video should help you ID and correct the problem.

I'd add, use an elbow pad in the meantime. But, then again, pain is such an effective teacher.
 

geezer

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Anybody else do this? I'd hate to imagine what might happen if I were using a blade...
I've done that before. :facepalm:

...Not in a long time, though. Can't even remember how, exactly... Probably swinging across hard and all the way through so the stick passes under (or is supposed to pass under) my left (free-hand) elbow, wrapping around behind my body with the tip pointing back. Like you said, it only happens when you are going really hard and fast, and usually after a lay-off when you are out of practice. It's just a matter of poor free-hand position and being out of practice.

IMO it's good that it hurts, because you will fix the problem right away... and, like you said, "Imagine if you were using a blade"! :eek:
 

geezer

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Try to watch a video of yourself. Hard to see problems in real time going fast and hard. Obviously, you have some (probably slight) problem with your form. Maybe you're over-bending the wrist of the stick hand, or maybe your guard/checking arm's elbow is sticking out too much. Adding that power and speed seems to be throwing your form off a bit. A video should help you ID and correct the problem.

I'd add, use an elbow pad in the meantime. But, then again, pain is such an effective teacher.
Isshinryuronin: Great response! Bolded the parts that I liked the most. Argus: Using video can be problematic, because you probably won't do it wrong and hit your elbow when you are recording ...and then of course you will do it as soon as you are off camera!
 

Blindside

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What is your left hand/arm doing? As a point of comparison this is what I am supposed to be doing with my left.
 

Alan0354

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What is your left hand/arm doing? As a point of comparison this is what I am supposed to be doing with my left.
I actually thought about holding a knife on the left hand, but on second thoughts, it's too dangerous. In the middle of everything, people easily lose track of the left hand and the right hand can easily swing to the knife. I gave that one up.
 

Blindside

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I actually thought about holding a knife on the left hand, but on second thoughts, it's too dangerous. In the middle of everything, people easily lose track of the left hand and the right hand can easily swing to the knife. I gave that one up.
We have literally centuries of records of people fighting with short knives in their off hand, this speaks to the lack of your own training or interest in training.
 

Alan0354

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We have literally centuries of records of people fighting with short knives in their off hand, this speaks to the lack of your own training or interest in training.
It is easier to say than to do. This is like keeping the hands up in boxing, it is so simple but how many people can actually do that in the middle of the fight? So many times a boxer get caught hands down!!!

Yeh, I am no expert and not even want to be an expert. I am too old for that already. Just want to practice for self defense using a walking cane. I put in a lot of effort in the last 3 months, I figure I should be well trained for my purpose if I can keep this up for total of one year. I have no illusion I will go anywhere in stick fight.


I almost forgot, I find it is more secure, hitting harder and faster using two hands swing like holding a katana. I won't accidentally lose the cane as easy if I swing with two hands. also, with two hands, I can use a heavier cane. I change to a 17oz United Cutlery nylon walking cane that is a lot tougher than wood or rattan. So holding a knife with one hand is out of the question. Besides, I am only interested in self defense, not out to kill someone using a knife.
 
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A

Argus

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@isshinryuronin @geezer
Welp, I took your advice and started recording myself.
I haven't hit my elbow since, of course. lol
It is helping me become aware of a ton of bad habits / things in dire need of practice though. Lots of awkward stuff, especially my feet. (What am I doing with that gan-sau & thrust thing? I'm not even properly offline I think. And that low Kali Ilustrisimo parry/wipe where I walk right into the strike...)
I uh, uploaded it for fun. Beware! I am basically a completely out of practice FMA mutt at this point, with just a bit of experience in Lameco / Kali Ilustrisimo, Pekiti, and now Modern Arnis. This is just free flow practice where I try to remember and explore what little I know...
I've always been too embarrassed to upload a video of myself doing Martial Arts, but I thought it might motivate me to practice more and be a kind of nice way to record my progress.
 
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Argus

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What is your left hand/arm doing? As a point of comparison this is what I am supposed to be doing with my left.
Ah, yes. I remember Pekiti guys slide the hand down and out of the way like that!
I don't fully remember what I was instructed to do with my left hand in Lameco, to be honest. What I am doing with it is probably that, but perhaps also influenced by my Wing Chun habits (where we keep the rear hand in very similar positions). I'm sure I'm doing quite a bit wrong! Looking at the video of myself, there's times where I'm aimlessly exposing the hand to a counter strike, for sure -- putting it in position that might make sense for empty hand but probably not for Eskrima/Arnis. I likely keep it too far forward in general. I guess my Arnis instructor will correct me at some point.
 
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geezer

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Ah, yes. I remember Pekiti guys slide the hand down and out of the way like that!
I don't fully remember what I was instructed to do with my left hand in Lameco, to be honest. What I am doing with it is probably that, but perhaps also influenced by my Wing Chun habits (where we keep the rear hand in very similar positions). I'm sure I'm doing quite a bit wrong! Looking at the video of myself, there's times where I'm aimlessly exposing the hand to a counter strike, for sure -- putting it in position that might make sense for empty hand but probably not for Eskrima/Arnis. I likely keep it too far forward in general. I guess my Arnis instructor will correct me at some point.
In our escrima we don't slide the hand down to the hip. The movement is smaller. The energy and flow is more linked to the shoulder ...kinda like a double-stick four count figure-eight pattern, except the free-hand movement is compact and close to the chest. I find it gives my free hand strikes more power ...which matters more if you do not have a weapon in your free hand. With a knife speed is more important.

But honestly, if some stranger asked me what I did with my left hand when I was swinging my stick.... well I'd be at a loss for words! :oops:
 
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