CTS / Footwork Friday / Martial Arts

Footwork Friday: Combining Move Up the Circle

Last Footwork Friday, move up the circle was introduced. It’s a great footwork pattern for changing angles, but you don’t actually go anywhere. The circular footwork is best paired with other footwork. In today’s installment, we’ll combine move up the circle with the reverse triangle footwork.


Disclaimer: The footwork discussed below is from Counterpoint Tactical System as I’ve learned it from Master Zach Whitson. Any errors or inconsistencies are mine. The spirit of this series is me studying footwork in more depth. I don’t claim to know everything, and I will make mistakes. But, again, those mistakes are mine. Also, this article is for reference only and should be used as a secondary source only. Please, see a Filipino martial arts instructor if you wish to accurately learn these techniques.

Footwork Friday Logo

To begin reverse triangle, students start off in a matched lead, i.e. right to right or left to left. In the matched lead, the students are lined up so that if one reaches straight out with a left hand, it will touch the opponents right shoulder. The feet travel along the triangles lines.

Basic Reverse Triangle

Move up the circle is a rotational footwork that I use to make small angular adjustments. It is used to change angles without changing location.

Move Up the Circle

I like pairing reverse triangle and move up the circle. First, walk the triangular footwork. When you change lead foot, then, move up the circle. From there, step on reverse triangle. Again, when the lead foot has changed move up the circle. You should be back to where you started.

This footwork pairs well together because it is a good way to demonstrate centerline theory. The centerline is the imaginary line separates right and left hand sides of the body. In the image below, centerline is the line of buttons that move vertically up and down the man’s body.

With your centerline pointed at your opponent, all weapons are available to strike your opponent. Conversely, when your opponent’s centerline pointed at you, you are vulnerable to all of your opponent’s strikes. Therefore, it makes sense to move such that your centerline is pointed at your opponent while his is pointed away from you. This is what the combination of reverse triangle and move up the circle accomplishes. Reverse triangle takes you off your opponent’s centerline, but your centerline is not pointed at your opponent. This is where move up the circle makes all the difference. In the video below, the stick pointing outwards is a visual representation of the centerline’s direction. Note how moving up the circle points the stick back at the opponent.

Below is a head on view of the same drill.

This is one example of how to combine circular footwork with linear patterns. Try this with forward triangle and the shuffles.


2 thoughts on “Footwork Friday: Combining Move Up the Circle

  1. Pingback: Footwork Friday: Why Angles? | St. Louis Counterpoint Tactical Systems

  2. Pingback: Footwork Friday: Training Clusters | St. Louis Counterpoint Tactical Systems

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s