Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Pekiti Tirsia Kali

Tonight I visited another martial art. I won't call it a school, precisely, because it's basically a guy teaching out of his house. I've looked at this art before, but it was several years ago. Tonight was a strong reminder of why I liked it. This particular style is called Pekiti Tirsia Kali.

The first thing to realize it that was meant to make people ready to fight as quickly as possible. So it starts from weapons, and works back to unarmed from there. The main weapons it uses are machete and knife; it also has some gun-oriented components. This has a certain bloody-minded appeal for me.

Secondarily, it's surprisingly compatible with things that I've already done. It recognizes and trains the Six Harmonies, though it doesn't refer to the concept that way. (The Six Harmonies are hips-and-shoulders, elbows-and-knees, and hands-and-feet. To produce power, they are coordinated in any larger movement - hence, in harmony.) The stepping and stances are compatible, too: angular steps, very mobile, with attention to both closing and exiting. A lot of their attacks are built along diagonal lines, making them very similar to some of the Long Fist movements used in Mantis.

I have a few minor issues - the main one being that their idea of a "long" weapon is a machete. My idea of a long weapon is a staff or spear. I am not entirely sure that those weapons don't exist in this style, but they're certainly not part of the introductory curriculum. I'm also not sure whether this style works mostly with single weapon, or whether they ever use paired weapons.

But it's interesting, it's close, and it's no more expensive than anything else I've looked at. It's firmly focused on weapons, and I could probably get quite a bit out of it in the six months or so that I have available. I could do a whole lot worse than study this.

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