Video 3: Low Level Series (filmed November, 2006)
About the Videos
One of the hallmarks of Albo Kali Silat is the ability to conduct low level, mid level and high level attacks and defenses, and to flow between the levels with ease. The series of moves depicted is predominantly low level. I performed this series twice, filming from two different angles, so that the viewer could more easily observe what was occurring. Also, to aid the viewer, I performed all of these moves very slowly, at 1/3 to 1/2 of the speed with which they would be used in combat. For ease of viewing during this series, I did not include an opponent. In doing the motions in this fashion none of the series was hidden by an opponents body. As in any single person practice of martial arts, an opponent should be visualized by the person conducting the drill. In this series, one very skilled opponent, or two to three less skilled opponents who are bunched together to the front of the defender should be visualized.
The first move following the traditional Kali bow is a simultaneous low and high line attack. The opponent could be standing in a ready posture or actually launching an attack with one of his fists. I move forward, striking upward with my right elbow, which will strike the opponents arms, clearing the center line, if the opponent has either of his arms in an attacking or guarding posture. If the opponents arms are not in the way of the strike, then the elbow will strike the opponent on the chin. Simultaneous with the elbow strike, my right foot executes a low, sweeping kick with my shin, which would impact on the outside of the opponents left ankle. Following the kick, my right foot is placed in the lima position, with the inside edge of my right foot directly outside and behind the opponents ankle, and the elbow strike is not retracted, as it is now the often seen elbow shield used in Kali to screen the head and upper quadrant of the body from blows. The right leg now folds over, with the outside of my right knee pushing sideways and down on the inside of the opponents left knee. As I sit in the hari mau or tiger posture, the opponents leg should be folded over, resulting in a takedown, with the opponent falling on his back or side. Alternatively, the opponent could have been very skilled and have moved out of range of the sweeping kick and the takedown.
If the opponent has fallen, the most natural reaction is for the opponent to get out of the vulnerable posture (flat on the ground) and attempt to rise up. In my next motion, I move forward, launching a round kick to the rising opponents head, stopping his aggressive actions and ending in a kneeling posture called kuha-kuha in Albo Kali Silat. Alternatively, if the opponent was skilled and had avoided the takedown, the most natural reaction for the opponent would be to attack while I was sitting in hari mau, at an apparent disadvantage. The round kick, in this situation, would impact on the attacking opponents knee, causing his leg to buckle and his balance to falter. My next move is an upward elbow strike. If I had already kicked my opponent in the head, then this move would be an elbow shield against the advancing opponents and the powerful, upward elbow strike should cause them to keep their distance for the next second or so. If I had just hit a skilled opponent in the knee with the round kick, then the elbow strike would be to the slightly unbalanced opponents groin, or a very unbalanced opponents face as he was falling. I follow this upward elbow strike by moving backward, back into hari mau. Notice that the hooking, sweeping motion of my left leg could sweep the leg out from under an opponent, especially if his posture and balance had already been affected by the strikes described above. Also notice that the right arm executes an upward elbow strike at the same time that the left leg sweeps back.
A logical move for a falling attacker might be to clutch at the person who is sitting in front of him and who has just struck him. A grasping or grappling attack is also a valid and probable option for a new and uninjured attacker. A further option for an uninjured attacker would be to try to kick the sitting person in the face. My next move counters all of these options as I flow from hari mau to a naga (snake or dragon) posture. Notice that my hands circle downward, my body dips down until my face touches the floor, and my right leg goes straight back, forming the tail of the snake. The circular, downward motion of the arms acts to push a grabbing attackers arms to the side. Alternatively, this motion also will deflect a kick to the face. Dropping my body face-down on the floor will pull a grappling attacker down onto his face and, in the case of a kick to the face, will put my body out of the line of the attack. If the opponent is attempting to rise after being taken down onto his face, then my right leg front kick from the naga posture will strike him in the face. If he has attacked with a kick or has not been unbalanced enough to be taken down, then the front kick impacts his groin. The immediate dropping of my body back to face-down on the mat allows me to go below the line of most retaliatory strikes from the opponent, and also coils my muscles to act as a spring for the subsequent upward movement of my body, and a possible rising groin strike with the back of my left hand.
My next move in this series is to step forward in kuha-kuha while executing an upward elbow strike to the opponents groin, immediately following up with a flying knee strike to the opponents face, conducted with my left leg. Notice that my arms travel downward, as my hands would be grasping the opponents shoulders in order to pull him downward, making the knee strike even more devastating. This is a transition from low line attacks to a high line attack. I land in a low or sitting kuha-kuha posture, once again ready to attack or defend from the low line.