As one of mankind's oldest weapons, it's hard to beat the simple effectiveness of the stick. Combine that with the fact that a walking cane can be carried in many places other tools like blades and firearms cannot and you have an extremely versatile force multiplier that can accompany you almost anywhere.

Due to the age of the weapon there are countless stick based systems. We're going to look past the common stick arts like Kali, Arnis, and Pekiti Tirsia and examine two arts we teach at the Wik Academy that utilize specifically the walking stick or cane.

La Canne de Combat

La Canne at the Wik Academy of Martial Arts

The first is the art of La Canne de Combat, an art closely connected with Savate. Originating in France at least as far back as the early 1800s Canne de Combat utilizes the cane in a manner reminiscent of the foil used in fencing. It was a popular gentleman's self-defense discipline throughout the 1960s, and there are tales of assassins using the art in occupied France during World War II to dispatch high ranking Nazi officers.

After being largely codified into a sport in order to survive as a discipline the original self-defense oriented techniques which include more targeting of vulnerable areas, throws, chokes, and joint locks using the cane have come to sometimes be called canne défense. Another variation which blends in a range of kicks and striking from Savate also exists, generally called canne chausson.

The canne de combat techniques that we teach at the Academy come down from the Federation de Savate Boxe Francaise through Professor Salem Assli.

Silek Harimau Minangkabau

Silek Harimau Mingangkabau Tongkat at the Wik Academy of Martial Arts

The walking stick, ortongkat, was traditionally the last weapon a practitioner of Silek Harimau Minangkabau learned and was considered the weapon of Grandmasters. It was thought that it took the years of experience and wisdom of a Grandmaster to be able to defend effectively against enemies armed with machetes and other more lethal weapons.

The tongkat techniques of Silek Harimau Minangkabau include low-crouched stances that allow a defender to hook and catch the legs of attackers with the crook of the cane, loose hand locks and blade immobilization techniques using the stick, and extended long and mid-range strikes.

Our Academy's Silek Harimau Minangkabau comes down from the Hanafi lineage through Grandmaster Maha Guru Richard Crabbe De-Bordes. Maha Guru De-Bordes will be leading a seminar this month in both empty hand and walking cane techniques.

If you're interested in learning effective self-defense techniques using empty hands, blades, and a variety of other tools contact us to schedule a time to come in and discuss your goals.

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