This blog is for my family and for my martial arts friends. This is also for families who loves bonding and having a good time with their children while doing something fun and sometimes crazy stuffs.

WARNING about our videos (located on your right): We train in the traditional way and our practice vids may be a bit hard or rough to many. If you are following the "modern way or art", we are just following our tradition and have no quarrel with yours... Many thanks and ENJOY!!!

Testing our homemade Arnis sticks :)

Me and my son doing some slow Arnis to test our homemade yantok/rattan sticks. The weather was fine but the ground was slippery which added more fun to our stick testing :)

We were both tired from practicing unarmed MA before moving to Arnis and those small slippery pebbles are just evil! This is why we like practicing outdoors because chances of slipping and making a fool of ourselves is added entertainment, lol. We tried doing some spin kicks just like in the dojos but here it was like pebble skating. Luckily we didn't slip or fall but the kicks we did today were surely mediocre, hahaha!

The sticks were raw when we first got them from the Philippines. One of my son's stick got shattered and two of my sticks are peeling off. Though both of our sticks got damaged, the sticks didn't fully break compared to the cheap dowels from the hardware store that we were using before. Dowels usually snap and we always had to dodge broken flying dowels which is not really fun at all :(

We always like to practice freestyle and do heavy strikes but our homemade rattan sticks were not that reliable compared to the sticks that I was using back in the Philippines before. These sticks will do for softer strikes and practices but I guess that we will be needing to get stronger rattan sticks again :)

The reason why we like to practice freestyle and doing heavy strikes and full arm movements compared to softer more fast and nice looking style is because this is what my grandpop teachers taught me and I'm just passing it to my son. I am not taught to be a stick fighter (bastonero) but was only passed some traditional FMA skills to help me with my bush whacking skills, lol! Like my teachers, I also believe that it will be better to practice doing heavy strikes (again because of bush whacking...) and if ever in real life confrontation, my body will remember to hit hard. Many martial arts practitioners will practice a certain technique in full speed and in full power for thousands of times just to get their body to remember the technique (muscle memory, instinct, 2nd nature). My old teachers said that if I practice hard swinging my itak or bolo, then it will be easier for me to chop "real trees". If I always practice soft, then my muscle memory will tend to give a softer swing which will give blisters to my hand because I have to strike more times compared to using my bolo like an ax. One strong strike - one dead tree, 10 soft strikes - the tree might get really pissed and kick you in the balls, hahaha! I am just using the techniques which was originally for itak/bolos/knives and adopted it to sticks. I don't know if this kind of thinking is right or applicable in real street fights (looking at the ceiling scratching my head, lol) but I'll stay using heavy blows than get my balls kicked. Remember that there are "some badass trees" in the forest and even if you whack them hard, they just don't fall. One time during MA practice, there was this huge muscular guy that has abs like wood. His abs just deflected all my kicks and punches with no problems so I just gave him a strong finger lock that send him straight to the floor. If I pussy-finger locked him, I'm sure that he'll tore me to pieces. Same with sticks...

This was my son's first time to use yantok sticks and he said that yantok/rattan has lots of flex and reduces the impact/punishment on our wrists. They are a lot more lighter than the dowels we were using before. We still have several more spares but at this rate, our spares wont last long, lol.

Please don't get discouraged making your homemade sticks because of this. Try different materials for your homemade project. Some materials may not be good for heavy impact but could probably be good as a trainer but as long as you keep on practicing, soft or hard style... you'll still do damage, HAHAHA!!!

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