Boxe francaise, Canne de combat and Baton Clip

Discussion in 'Western Martial Arts' started by Louie, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. Louie

    Louie STUNT DAD Supporter

    Interesting old Boxe francaise, Canne de combat and Baton (disciplines of savate) video clip
    [ame=""]YouTube - Roger LaFond method of canne, baton and french boxing[/ame]

  2. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    Terrific find Louie! As a long-time eskrima guy and fledgling Western fencer, I'm really curious about la canne. And I'm a fan of what savate I've seen as well. Thanks very much!
  3. komuso

    komuso Valued Member

    Hi ap,

    I have just kicked off my eskrima training this year (and loving it, of course..). I get that this might well be an excuse for a new thread, but i would be intrigued to hear what you think about the differences and similarities with western fencing. I had a bit of a dabble at foil ages ago, and this feels very different (not to mention it has a lot more hurt invloved, mwa, ha ha ha)

  4. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    You're in luck (sort of). I have exactly one journal entry remaining at MAP. And it's an "article" I wrote on just that very topic. Fair warning: It's utterly unscholarly and (as the song goes) "has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience."

    That said, it's as good an answer to your question as I can offer. :)

  5. komuso

    komuso Valued Member

    Hi Stuart,

    that was really cool! Thanks heaps! Some really interesting ideas, and the best kind of research, first hand! I wish half of the folks that I teach research to formally were as thorough as you were, or as interesting to read :)

  6. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    No worries! Truth told, you've done me a favour. I'd forgotten it was there. And it turns out I'd gotten some other feedback as well. Never even occurred to me to go back and check for comments. Didn't figure anyone had read it. :)

    Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed reading it. I certainly enjoyed writing it.

    I can pretty much promise that I don't have articles written to cover any other questions, but--as you can probably tell--that seldom stops me from gassing on. :D

  7. komuso

    komuso Valued Member


    its good to know that there is someone that I can ask my usual stupid questions of :) Other than my patient instructor of course.

    though... and this is just an initial observation mind you, the fma seem much more about practical experience of an idea or technique than they are about endlessly talking about it or philosophising. Which I had a bit of in some versions of japanese arts....

    I loved the stuff you wrote on the comparison to western fencing. By way of my own, much more inept comparison...

    My aikido club had set up beside the uni fencing club on orientation day. A number of beers later a sort of cultural exchange was sorted out, the fencers got yo do some aiki, a few of us got to go and fence. So I go through the warm ups, learn some basic thrusts and a parry, and then they get two of us begginers to square up with foils, masks on, good to go.

    I had quite clearly failed to understand what was meant by the whole right to attack thing. So, thinking like a good aikidoist, when he thrust I did your trick and squeezed as far off line as I could go, while also stepping into the attack and counter thrusting.

    To be greeted by a thunderous roar of STOP as I had managed to snap the foil.. turning it into a real sword. It would seem the whole thing wasnt really set up for that kind of simultaneous collision.


    When arts collide. My own very clumsly cross cultural experience of swordsmanship :)

  8. lklawson

    lklawson Valued Member

    Nice article. I was particularly pleased to see you point out the difficulties of assuming that one can use a stick in exactly the same way as a blade. It mirrors a conversation I was having just yesterday (literally) with a FMA guy who was asserting that a master of the knife could easily employ his knife skills, applying them to short sword, long(er) sword, stick, and even long staff.

    Peace favor your sword,
  9. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    Yeah, that "translation" bit gets way overplayed in FMA. It suffers from the same problem that most analogies do in that, if they were genuinely precisely the same, it wouldn't be an analogy.

    To adapt a conversation I had with a coworker once on a completely different topic:

    Me: Your hand is like a knife...
    Him: Except that it isn't.
    Me: ...
    Him: ...
    Me: Well, not exactly, no.
    Him: It's actually quite unlike a knife in several important ways.
    Me: Yes.
    Him: Alright then.

    It's very tempting to believe that, in learning one weapon, we're actually learning all weapons. But realistically, that simple doesn't stand up. That's obviously not to say that there isn't a good deal of crossover. The basic idea is solid. But, as with most things, it gets overblown.

  10. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    I discussed this once with a JKD teacher in Indiana who also practiced fencing: The vast difference between people who learn fencing to fence and people who learn fencing to gain insight on something else.

    I think the FMA "philosophy" is mercifully light on philosophy (though there are definitely some spiritual avenues that you can explore if you like) and heavy on pragmatism.

    My own "cultural clash" came during a duello bout. I tended to do quite well in duello, but someone hit me in the leg. So I was obliged to sit down, my leg having been "incapacitated" according to their rules.

    Now, honour dictates that the other guy now fence me from a sitting position as well, rather than taking advantage of his situation. And my opponent sighed and said "oh, alright."

    I cut off both his arms and ran him through as he was sitting down. Shoulda done it out of sword range, I say.

    Not sure that's precisely a cultural clash. But my take on it (at that time) was that honour was more dogmatic than pragmatic. I wasn't proud, precisely, but utilitarianism had its appeal.

  11. lklawson

    lklawson Valued Member

    If it makes you feel any better, this is a standard tactical/procedural technique in Classical Fencing.
    In this second link, notice that white is fencing left handed, which changes the direction of the inqartatta. I assume this was done so that it would be easier to see in the photo.

    Peace favor your sword,
  12. komuso

    komuso Valued Member


    "cut off both his arms and ran him through as he was sitting down. Shoulda done it out of sword range, I say."

    pure gold. But why did you stop when you did? I mean, he could potentially have bitten you or something despite the injuries, and that can be nasty! Going a bit soft?

    I get what you say about the philosophy. I am being trained one to one until I am no longer such a danger to myself and others, so the focus is very pragmatic for now, though every now and again my instructor will talk about things like what would be considered to be a morally correct use of technique, or about restraint, etc.

    But mostly it is just this ever growing collection of practical techniques that move between stick and empty hand. It is a very interesting way to learn things.

    Thanks for the links Kirk, that was kind of what I did, though in my aikido stylee I ended up stepping a long way further into the attack, almost a counter lunge if you like, with my body almost beside theirs by the time we had both stopped. Which, thinking about it now, is why the foil snapped, it must have been very seriously bent at that point.

    Still, if you are going to stab someone, you should REALLY stab them.... At least that was what I though until the somewhat bemused instructor pointed out that the light scrape that I had copped on the way in in fact nullified my awesome thrust of doom because it got there first :)

  13. lklawson

    lklawson Valued Member

    I understand.

    I spent a lot of time in Tomiki style so I grok what you're saying.

    Peace favor your sword,
  14. DaeHanL

    DaeHanL FortuneCracker

    thanks for posting the video! i have been searching for these types of videos endlessly. I found some of Count Beruzzy but never LaFond. Sometimes I can't believe how much the arts have changed in just the past 30 years. Heck the past 15 even. I'll find some vids to show you what i mean.

    [ame=""]YouTube - Canne de combat[/ame]


    [ame=""]YouTube - SAVATE BF FRANCE ELITE 2009 Part 4/6[/ame]
    watch the 2nd match. the woman in red knows her ranges. she gives the gal in blue 3 dozen toes from her Fouetté to the sternum and liver.

    I'll be going for my Red Gloves next month, wish me luck. En Guard :p
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2009
  15. komuso

    komuso Valued Member

    Hi DaeHan

    sorry to ask annoying questions, but....

    In the top clip with the canes, are they sparring, competing, is it a demo? It looks kind of like a demo, but I can't quite be sure,

    Enjoyed it heaps!

  16. DaeHanL

    DaeHanL FortuneCracker

    It is a demo before a BXFS event. I'm sure you noticed how the cane is chambered and placed without much force. That is because it's more about placement and technique than k.o. power. Some would say that's true about savate as well, but it's completely up to the practitioner.

    here's one of my absolute favorite highlight reels
    [ame=""]YouTube - Savate highlights[/ame]
  17. komuso

    komuso Valued Member


    thought as much, but sometimes it can be hard to tell exactly. Loved the second real too, those folks look very solid on their feet when kicking,


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