Continuing with the stretto theme, we began class with exercises meant to get students to recognise entry points and make safe entries. The first of these exercises began from a right foot forward stance, both players cutting to a bind without footwork. The Player attempts to force a bind on the Companion (i.e. force a desired entry – overbind, underbind, etc.) and failing that, recognise and point out the entry before performing an associated technique.
Stepping the drill one step further into bridging the gap, students began from wide measure, and stepping in with a cut to the bind. Again, the Player is attempting to force an entry on the Companion, using blade pressure and angulation as well as depth of the pass to the bind. This sets up a more realistic environment for practising entries into stretto, since the hands hand be high, low, left, right and the entry shallow or deep.
We followed this with a review of the 1st remedy master of dagger plays for stretto, the disarm and the ligadura mezana, followed by the two canonical counters, and inferred two more counters using first remedy master principles.
The tor di spada was to be next, but time ran short, and so these last plays of stretto will be visited next week, along with some slow speed sparring with entries into stretto being the defined goal.