This past Sunday was a great thrill for me. I had a chance to participate in the advancement test of one of the Cannibal Combat Group brothers. He is a fine young man, and a tough, strong and able fighter named John Ramirez. He did very well during his test.
Guru Greg Moody was there as well. He was visiting from out of town. Guru Greg Moody is a Co-Founder of Cannibal (along with Guru Mike Ritz). The two of them started the group in their backyards, sparing with rattan sticks and garden gloves. After six years of beating the tar out of each other they had a group.
I've been studying under Guru Ritz for several years (five or six I think), during which we have spent many hours in my back yard and Mike's garage swinging sticks, knives, swords and every other tool of destruction you can think of. I was into it for a couple of years before I had the privilege of meeting Guru Greg. Five minutes after our first meeting, we were smacking the snot out of each other in my backyard. I loved it and so did Greg. We were instant friends.
Greg came down to visit over the weekend and spared just about every member of the group. I couldn't attend on Saturday, but got to spend time with the group and play around with Greg on Sunday morning. We bagged the gloves and padded sticks and just sparred the old way, live sticks and no gloves. That is the best way, if you ask me. Nothing truly simulates the danger and speed of a real stick. If you really want to learn to hit and not get hit, live stick with no pads is the only way. You take some licks, but you learn a ton with every session.
Greg and I had a terrific time. We were both a little beat-up afterwards, but I would not have traded that time for anything. Here's to you Guru Greg! I'll have my sticks ready for the next time you come to town. In the meantime, I'm sure that Guru Mike will be more than happy to smack me around in your absence.