Motion Science

Level III * Position Formulation

Position formulation is one of the Level III advanced concepts of Motion Science. Position formulation involves the strategies and tactics to place yourself in an advantageous position vis--vis your opponent.

The components of position formulation studied in Motion Science are as follows.

Setup--Distance and Angle Control
Active Defense--Disguise and Disrupt
Probing--Tendency and Timing Detection

Setup--Distance and Angle Control

When facing an opponent, distance and angle should be immediately controlled. This is referred to as the "Setup". The control of distance is the most important action you can take. This is done by staying at or beyond the range of the opponent's weapons and is called "controlling the critical distance". If you enter the critical distance, by either your own or your opponent's initiative, you should do so with either a strike or a fake. This weakens his position. You should never stay within the critical distance and be inactive.

Controlling angle includes controlling your angle in relation to the opponent, and controlling the angle of your own body in relation to your center line. Once you are inside the critical distance of the opponent, angle control becomes the primary factor. Angle control uses the dimensions of width, depth, and height to control the opponent.

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Active Defense--Disguise and Disrupt

Active defense refers to the use of appropriate foot work and body maneuvers to disguise your intended course of action. It also refers to disrupting your opponent's timing and rhythm. Being an unpredictable fighter is the main goal of an active defense. A skilled fighter's intended movement can be disguised within his general movement. This is not to be confused with meaningless movement, which is moving around an opponent without intended purpose--the type of movement most seen with inexperienced fighters.

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Probing--Tendency and Timing Detection

An integral part of sparring is deception. This is the ability to fake and is an essential factor in defeating an opponent. However, determining and implementing the correct deceptive strategy for the specific opponent you are facing is the real challenge. This is done by a tactic called probing.

Each opponent you face has a tendency to act in a certain way. He has favorite moves that make up his style of fighting. Some fighters charge in, some lay back, some like to kick, some like to punch, just to name a few. Probing is a tactic that uses false leads to allow the opponent's style to be determined. A false lead is the extension of a weapon towards an opponent without the commitment of body weight. So, when you first face an opponent, probe to see what he does and then choose the correct strategy to fit his style.

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