Class began with the usual warm up, begun by Jean François Gagné, as I attempted to repair our weapons cabinet (don’t ask…). This was followed by a simple partnered moulinet dagger flow drill, and our version of the dagger poste dance. By this time, I’d managed to get dressed, and jumped in. Thank you, JF!
The rest of the class was dedicated to the 6th remedy master of dagger and some of its derived plays. Beginning with the cover, we drilled covering from different position and footwork – stepping in to break the attack, receiving the attack without moving, and moving offline with a compass step. Some points to consider for each one:
- When breaking the attack, some offline movement is desirable – the range is shortened when using the dagger to cover in frontale. Don’t eat a dagger to the face.
- When receiving the attack, ground yourself with proper structure by dropping your weight and extending your rear leg. all the force of the dagger should be routed into the ground through your back leg.
- Offline with a compass pace sets up a natural path for the dagger to move to the outside.
We proceeded then to the second scholar of the remedy, setting aside the dagger to gain the attacker’s outside. Always remember to suppress the dagger as you enter and stab with your own. Not doing so gives your partner an opportunity to free himself and counter with a direct thrust.
The dagger disarm was practised next. An important point to consider is an anchoring point for your own dagger as your strip your partner’s. Adding insult to injury, you can also get a ligadura if he refuses to let go.
Finally, the dagger plays were related back to the first and third (unarmed) remedies that play to the inside and outside, respectively. To end, the first scholar of the sixth remedy was practised, whereby the scholar covers with the dagger, but then transfers to a first master grip to stab the player in the ribs. Notes: Don’t remove your second hand from the dagger if your partner is bearing down on you. This turns out to be a good sentimento di daga drill as well, because you have to understand when it is appropriate to remove the left hand from the dagger. In essence, when pressure is removed (beginning to draw back for a second attack) or redirected to the outside.
In all, excellent class, and students picked up quickly and intuitively. Good work!