Focus mitt energy drills

Having fun with the mitts

Hey Joe,

Couple things. First, your carrying your lead hand low, youre extremely vulnerable to a counterpunch, not so much during mitt training but definately sparring.

Second, it's even more pronounced when you switch leads. Even though you advocate practicing both sides, I consider it a bad mojo to get too used to it, and especially for a newbie.

I find out from day one if the person is Lefty or Righty, and make them practice "Stance-Discipline". I know it's close-minded but I used to teach ambidexterity too. Came to the conclusion it's just not necessary to open yourself up to any possible mistakes.

I also found that if you feel accustomed to switching then you dont see the mistakes that you make, also you will switch easily when hurt, (that's as  good as a tell in Poker) and then you just beat the shit out of the guys lead leg.

I know you didnt ask for opinions, but I thought I'd chime in anyway. IMHO.

Dave Rogers

Great point but if you train your weaker side than it will strengthen your common.

yeah, ya get lazy as ya get older, good thing I'm not competing huh???.

I don't know if I agree with the "Stance-Discipline". I do agree with it for newbie's though. but I have seen great boxers, Hagler,Lenard,etc smoothly transition and work it.

I think it also has a place striking first off the clinch. ya might not be based in your disciplined stance, so why miss the opportunity to strike right where you are, that might be the edge you needed especially if your holding a knife and it really means something, ya know..

I guess double stick fighting just brings that out in my teaching.
But it is ultimately up to the fighter if he wants to bring it to the table or not.

Hey Joe awesome work on your vids, right on with your complete fighter-

Joe Maffei - yeah, ya get lazy as ya get older, good thing I'm not competing huh???. 

Yeah, can I get a double "Amen" on that.

When you guys hit 50, give me a call, I'll clue you in on things like arthritis, and macular degeneration.

To late MT, I hit fity a few years back. thank god for MA I'd be dead.

Hey MT, i decided to check out my lead hand last night, so I gloved up and went a few, it wasn't as bad as I first thought.

When I had the mitts on training the guy in the vid, I always rest the mitts on my chest if I'm not showing a target so they are kinda low, plus i don't want them to mistake my face for the mitt, I'm just to old for that shit :) but I did noticed last night when sparring I tend to keep my hands on my forehead most of the time when in range, so I don't feel to bad.

 Hey Joe,

So your an old geezer too. Man I'm telling you I'm feeling my 50 in every bone.

So yeah I'm kind of a stickler on the lead hand being up. (I tell my guys, you drop it below the collarbone, you are dead, plain and simple) So many people just dont see that they drop their hands, I mean it's OK if your a $$$$$$ Million dollar fighter and your hands are as fast as greased lightin, but reality is that if that was you, you wouldnt be talking on the internet. You would be on vacation down in the Bahamas when you werent driving around in your new Mercedes with your new Hollywood girlfriends.

And then when you do a switch lead, you just dont see how you drop the new lead that your not as accustomed to, (I'm not involved in FMA much anymore, so I dont do much knife or stick now, Sorry Guro Dan) mind you I'm not against fighting as a Southy, but stay that way and make that a strategy, I'll hold lefty for Lefties too just to get some practice in. In fact last week I just held Thai Pads for Spencer Fisher when he came to town, didnt realize before that he was south just never paid too much attention I guess.

Hey well have a good weekend fellow AARP member,

Your fav Geezer, Dave.

Thanks Rozz,which vid's did most interest you besides the CF vid???

Dave do you roll with the guys???

 Hey Joe,

I never really caught the fever for BJJ. Back in the 80's/90's when  Larry & Dan would throw it out there but I had my fill of grappling back in the 70's HS, so I gravitated towards Stick & Muay Thai.  One of my freinds teachs Kali around my area now so that makes me happy.

Mainly just punching, kicking, & clinching. Sparred this weekend and the youngsters all had a good time beating on me. Thank god they took some mercy on me.

Were you in the Military?

 Hey Joe,

No, you been reading my bio there, no, I went down to Ft. Benning and Matt Larson asked me to teach at the MACP SchoolHouse & they adopted my ciricullum for Level 3, offered me a job as Civilian coach (me Level 3 and Marc Denny Level 4)  but the funding for the jobs never materalized.

Just a "Joe-Schmoe", doing my patriotic duty. 

>>>>>>>>>PS. I was also a Instructor under Guro Dan but my inactivity (or lack of interest I guess) I'm not JKD/Kali Instructor anymore. I'm still JKD/Kali at heart and I look through those "eyes", but its just not right to stretch myself over all of those area's. I was going to go under Larry (and Paul also asked me back in 88 too), but my life wouldnt deal with the realities of all that training.

Dave, it really is great talking to you. Most of the guys out here are young, Marc Denny was a Vunak Bro of mine back in the day and Larry was a very good friend of mine even though I did not belong formally to his organization, we still saw things eye to eye.
Larry was REAL.

There is something to say about years on this planet, and having parents living through the depression. I think many of the younger guys, although they have a much better learning platform, and I'm not saying this in a disrespectful way, loose a lot in self reliance that we may have had to deal with when we were growing up. But I think they will get a quick learn if the economy continues to go south. I hope the ego can get dropped and realize there is a lot more to fighting then being in the cage.

My grandson was just here watching video's and playing with his X-Box (I have no clue how that is done, I'm so fucking out of it) but I remember back in the 60's being the TV's  "Remote Control" for my Dad.

He would kick me in the ass because his leg could always reach, and tell me to go change the chanell.

Thank God there was only 4. 

PS>>>>>And yes, Larry was REAL,one time he had an gig in Indy and the night before they had a IceStorm and we had to drill out in the parking lot. Had a lot of fun and then he made a comment about  me "You Chicago guys", told him I'm Normal, I aint Chicago (thats an Illinois joke) so he asks if I can meet him at another gig next week to help him with a private. that was a great week for me.

Hey Joe you have a great array of life vids, which are all great. Your movement really hits home- i know that beautiful dance:)-

Normal MT- Great stories, understand "stretch all over areas"

I have 5 kids and the remote is still MINE, must be tradition, like yours mine was same.

Normal MT - So yeah I'm kind of a stickler on the lead hand being up. (I tell my guys, you drop it below the collarbone, you are dead, plain and simple) So many people just dont see that they drop their hands


Even more coaches stop telling their fighters to keep the lead hand up thinking that the fighter isn't listening.  The fact usually is that they've missed out on pad training to help burn it into muscle memory.

hey when you guys are holding mitts, where do you put them when you are not targeting,cheast, behind your back???

Focus mitts you should treat them like gloves, one on your jaw and the other in front of your face, in case you want to hit somebody.  Act like your sparring just dont forget who is supossed to be the one who's hitting the pads. Some guys take the "Hit him when he opens up" a little too close to heart, and then its the other guys turn, so if you have been acting like a spaz, just remember that he gets to make you pay for it when he holds for you.

Sometimes if I dont want everybody to go through too much "take off-put on" equipment routine, I'll have everyone just use their 16oz gloves, and then they can have a better response to a punch/counterpunch.

Thai pads are down in "Nuetral" position and then you can turn and catch their kicks/knees or go high for the punch/elbows, and still be able to fire back a punch or kick when they get lazy.

In all honesty you train like you fight, you fight like you train.

Paul Hopkins - 

Holding focus mitts on the ground is something else I would like to see more people opine on.

We've been doing a good amount of ground pad work but it would be neat to see more footage of this.


I'm getting a number of my guys ready for Golden Gloves and have been video taping the sessions for them to watch after their workouts.  It's mostly sparring but we also do a good amount of pad rounds as well.  I'll upload some footage of them hitting the pads with me soon and post it to this thread.