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When you think of American Football, probably the last thing that comes to mind are the martial arts. Particularly the Filipino Martial Arts (FMA), which have so long been associated with sticks and swords.
And certainly a topic such as Hand Trapping, which has been dismissed as "useless clutter" by some modern practitioners and their devoted followers, would probably not be at the top of your list.
However, you may be surprised to discover that behind the scenes, ever since the 1980's progressive-thinking football coaches and players on professional and college teams have been using trapping drills drawn from the FMA!
Specifically, the Hubud Lubad drill ("To tie up and untie") and its variations are practiced so that players can get past their opponents or escape an attempted grab.
In a sense it is not a surprise that these drills should be so effective. Hand trapping is hand trapping, no matter for fighting or football. However, unlike some other forms of sensitivity training, the FMA trapping is useful while on the run and thus well suited to the gridiron.
Of course the drill has been modified somewhat to deal with the rules of football where you can not strike or follow up in the same ways that an FMA player might do but it is done in a super dynamic way.
Watch this clip by Randy "the Manster" White of the Dallas Cowboys as they demonstrate Football Skill Sparring - a free flow exercise using trapping and footwork skills to get past an opponent!
Do you see it? If you understand the basics of Hubud Lubud then you should be able to track on what they're doing here.
Let's see another example, shall we? This time from Sifu Tim Tacket training the San Francisco 49ers at a training camp in 1990.
So, now that you've seen how football adapted FMA, why not take the next step and re-incorporate this new version into your own bag of tricks? You will have a better skill, more versatile in situations where mobility is paramount.
Then you can mix your Hubud Lubud with your other trapping such as the Lop Sao and Chi Sao. Mr. Keating teaches the combination of these three key skill on Trapping 4: Art of Flow if you need a refresher on how to perform them correctly and most importantly to switch from side to side.
The switch is essential in all these exercise or else they become dead patterns, forever cycling in a single loop. It is the switch which makes all these come alive and truly separates those who can use these skills from those who've just learned the beginner's (seminar) version.
All my very best to you,
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