Coming from a boxing background it was very difficult, no I mean impossible to think or consider that there are more powerful options for striking than a cross, hook or uppercut.
I mean I have lost count of the amount of strikes I have seen in boxing where people are 'out cold' from one of those shots. However I had to 'feel' a hammer strike before I could believe it!
It was actually at a Defence Lab seminar that I got to experience my first hammer strike and that was the moment I was hooked! The sheer power transmitted through the pad and I know that the shot would have caused untold damage had it been in my face. But that wasnt the real reason I was so impressed, it was the speed it was delivered with. This was lighting fast!!!
I have been around the block. 17 years in the police, a boxer, a Judo player and I was even a pro boxing official working at world title events but despite this when I saw the Hammer's from Defence Lab in action I was blown away. Then Just when I thought I couldn't be blown away any more Andy Norman and Paul Strauther just sent me into orbit with this next aspect!
Hammers in Combination
In Defence Lab the Hammer strike or Hammer fist plays an important part of the training but it is part of a larger technical curriculum that has over 200 drills from standing alone and at this seminar Andy and Paul showed me the Hammer in combination. You see its at this point that the imitators of the DL shapes became just that- 'Bad Copies' because Andy showed the depth of the system in a few seconds.
It was like reading a whole book and learning that you have just only read the introduction- that's how I felt about my life in self defence training at that point! and that's why I am on a mission to master Defence Lab and become an instructor. Not because I think its cool (which it is) but because it works and works well!
In Defence Lab the Hammer strikes roll just like I used to throw hooks and straights in boxing, its like being a child in a sweet shop. All of a sudden I have been given strikes more powerful than my other techniques but it is the unique way that Defence lab uses them that is why they are so magical.
If you take what we refer to as Shape 1 for example. From here you can block, crash or enter and then flow into a range of combinations that would leave anyone in a heap on the floor. However this is all done from a position or shape that protects the head!
This is what the people that try and copy DL don't seem to understand. The depth that each technique has could require a lifetime to study, yet a student can be really effective in a short space of time!
Lets take a look at some video of DL Roma and its Lead Instructor Dorian Colombi in action showing a variety of techniques:
I am sure you can now start to see the Hammers in action and in combination with the shapes. Now add another 198 drills and variations and you are starting to get a grasp of just how amazing and powerful the Defence Lab training is.
But Why Are Hammers So Powerful?
The power behind the Hammer strike has a lot to do with the way our body generates power. The basic straight right punch used in boxing has a range of issues that make it a very difficult to actually perform. For starters you have to take your punch and push it in a straight line. This requires a large quantity of control and body mechanics, without the body mechanics the strike simply wont be powerful. However the hammer is a natural movement. Our arms follow a very natural path as all that really is required is for us to straighten our arm as we swing it downwards.
Just look at the ability to use a sledge hammer. Yes I know that this a piece of equipment but the mechanics remain the same, the strike is using a very natural muscular movement beacsue we contract our arms as we lift the hammer and then straighten as we deliver the hammer . Our arm is designed to bend and straighten which is why we have biceps and triceps!
Now when you start to add the Defence Lab body mechanics to this strike we see the potential of the power of this strike, but putting it all together is the key to Defence Lab and it takes time and training!
Hammers on the Ground
If you own DL Pack 1 then you will have seen the DL ground training and how it uses Hammer strikes. If not then we have an old video showing Defence Lab founder Andy Norman in action and using his Hammer strikes. Now since this Video Andy changed his training to make it much better and gave birth to Defence Lab but you will see the early steps in this evolution in this video. You will also get to see Andy nailing hammer fists in combination. We have placed these 3 videos on here for pure value!
Now I Know that this will wet your appetite because its pure class, but Andy Norman has evolved this type of training to another level!! You are seeing footage form a long long time ago so imagine just what it is like now.
But we also understand that Defence Labs are not everywhere, no matter how much we would like them to be growth takes time. For this reason we have created an on line university that goes live very soon!!!
In this on line facility you will get to see Andy Norman in action along with the rest of Team Storm and you will be blown away with what you see but more importantly you will see some amazing drills and techniques that will take your hammers and the rest of your game to a new level.
To finish off I will let you see some footage of a Defence Lab workshop and again you will see Hammers in action!
The bottom line is that Hammer strikes are amazing and DL has taken them to a new level. The hammers got me hooked and I know if you try DL then you will be too!!
Until next time shifters