event of the day: krav maga + orchestra
930 am Super tired and sleepy from the night before (Polecats gig, plus after gig eating at Mercao Centrale), I forced myself to go to 360 Fitness Club Makati for their Defense Against Knife and Gun Threat Seminar, to be conducted by Krav Maga Philippines.
I was able to chat with the instructors Fred Nogales, and Ed, while waiting for the elevator. They promised a no-frills class, no fancy moves. Just practical and efficient training.Ok, does not sound so bad. But with no sleep and just half a cup of coffee for breakfast– I just hope I don’t collapse during the 3 hour training.
We started with a little warm up,then the instructors explained a little about Krav Maga– that it is a practical and tactical system that is used for self-defense and combat. It has different aspects: physical, tactical, and mental. These would be further explained during the class.
We first studied the knife threat. Fred gave us some practical safety tips. For example, if you’re being held up, and the attacker wants your wallet– you throw the wallet to the attacker’s face, which would create a distraction, and allow you to run away. But for instances when this is not possible, we learned how to punch the attacker in various knife positions (front, side, back) and then create distance to allow for escape. Distance is key here, as a knife is useless if the attacker cannot reach you with the knife. We then practiced the moves with our partners.
Then we studied the gun threat. We were taught how to disarm a gun attacker– this time, distance is not the answer as a bullet can travel that distance. Again, we practiced with our partners.
The last part was what I call the zombie exercise. This is designed to develop our reaction to potentially dangerous situations. We were grouped into 6. One person would be “It”. The others would be the zombies trying to attack the It. The important thing here is that the It not be caught in the middle of the zombie mob. The best thing is to circle around your attacker, to keep moving, to even using one as a shield.
This last part was tiring. And after all that running around, the It was then surprised with 3 different attacks, which s/he had to defend him/herself from.
What I liked about this seminar was that the instructors taught very well. From role playing (they had superb acting skills! ), to explaining the technique– it was all very clear, and they had high regard for safety.
Physical/anatomical aspects were explained (why certain body parts are used to attack; where to hit the attacker, etc), as well as the tactical (why use the hand nearest to the attacker; why a certain kick and not the other, etc). There were mental exercises to prepare us for real life situations.
This was such a fun and useful seminar, I hope they have regular classes in 360 already!
715 pm After back to back pole classes, I take the train to Shangri-la Mall to watch the Manila Symphony Orchestra perform as part of the mall’s Christmas program. I am running late.
I catch the last song in the first part of the show; I make it just in time for Mozart’s ‘Allelujah’. There are some St. Scholastica voice students performing with the MSO, and they also perform excerpts from Mozart’s opera Cosi fan Tutte (Women are Like That). The third part of the show was an English Christmas song medley, after which they did a Paskong Pinoy segment.
At the end of their performance, the crowd stood up and asked for more. For their encore, they played ‘Ang Pasko ay Sumapit’ as arranged by Lucio San Pedro, and they invited the audience to sing. That’s when I realized I didn’t know the lyrics to this Filipino classic! Shame shame. But what a great show! In the mall nonetheless. A lot of shoppers passed by and stayed til the end. I think that’s a good sign 🙂
I was introduced to the MSO by Chino David. I met Chino in 2006 when I helped out with the first music video of his band Silent Sanctuary, for the song ‘Rebound’.
And then, as they would say, the rest is history.
Five years later, Chino David is the musical director for Polecats Manila‘s second anniversary show ‘Polarity’. He arranged 9 contemporary OPM songs and conducted the MSO that night as well. Awesome stuff.
photo by Tammy David