Self Defence Technique - Delayed Sword

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In this technique your attacker has grabbed you with their right hand and they are stood close enough to you to punch you in the face with their left hand. The right hand grab on its own is not an immediate threat.


This is something we should consider in our training. We should try to look at what else our attacker could do as a follow up to their current move.  

Moving from your point of origin, you increase the distance between you and your attacker by stepping back with your left foot into a right neutral bow. This gains you time and moves the targets your attacker may strike further away, to the extend of your attackers reach. (See Ranges of Contact)

Your stance change from normal standing position to a right neutral bow, decreases height, increases depth and narrows your width. Also this stablises your base and lowers your centre of gravity. 

As we drop into our stance we execute a right inward block, striking the attackers right bicep. This cause pain, and will weaken or break the grab all together. Looking at the cause and affect of our strikes is very important in our techniques as we are dependant upon the attackers reaction in order to choose what our follow up move will be. In our self defence techniques we define the reactions in order to practice our sequences of motion. Note our left hand and right knee are positional checks.

Our next move is to adjust our stance from our right neutral bow to a right 45 degree cat stance. The cat stance loads our left leg and lightens our right leg in prepartion for the kick (weight distribution 90/10). It increases the distance from our attacker, and opens our width/centre line. It lines our ankle, knee and hip up with the target. We call this an angle of entry. We maintain the postional check with the left hand and right inward block now becomes a check but it is also in a postion or readiness for a follow up strike.

The next move is a right snapping ball kick to the attackers groin. The mechanics (methods of execution) of this kick are "Thrust" your knee into the air, "Whip" your right foot out to strike the target and "Hammer" your heel back to beside your knee, while keeping your knee in the air.


Do not strike your own knee when hammering. Your knee should be used as  your target sight for your kick. 

The kick to the groin will cause your attacker to bend forwards at the waist due to the intense pain. The bodies natural reaction is to centreand focus on the pain and protect the affected area. If you get poked in the eye, your hand will go straight to the area and your body will focus on just that area.


the groin kick will cause the hands to drop to the groin area, and new targets will present themselves.

Right after the snapping ball kick strikes, by controlling the planting of your right foot, you can employ marriage of gravity to drop into a right neutral bow. 


As you settle, deliver a right outward handsword to your opponents neck, using torque. Your elbow should be down and anchored when striking as this will aid with the back up mass. (bumper truck principle).


Your left hand remains checking in case your  attackers right arm is in your way.


Remember, there are two basic ways of getting hit, intentionally and unintentionally. Checks help to cancel out the unintentional moves a person may make once struck.

The final part of the technique should now be a conscious decision on your part as to whether to cover out of the technique or follow up with further strikes.


You need to consider the damage done to your attacker and if the threat has been neutralised. Remember this is a base technique that does not employ any of the "What if?" principles.


In actual combat anything can happen. Our techniques help with the sequences of motion, actions and reactions, cause and affect, fitting of natural weapons to targets, considerations in combat, how to constantly protect yourself throughout the movements and many other concepts and principles contained in our Kenpo motion. 

Some Basic Technique Considerations 

1. Attitude (Of You/Attacker/Weapon)

2. Enviroment (What 's in/on/around)

3. Range (Increase/Decrease)

4. Position (Point of Origin)

5. Manoeuvres (Motion)

6. Targets

7. Natural Weapons

8. Natural Targets/Defences

9. Cover/Exit

A good memory aid is to remember the first letter of each item:


Delayed Sword is our first Kenpo technique in our syllabus. It only has three basic moves but there are a large number of concepts and principles behind each of these moves. The purpose of this page is not to show you all of the concepts and principles contained in this simple technique but to help you understand that at a higher level there is alot more to learn about the motion you employ.


For more detail or clarification on any of the terms used, speak to one of our academy's instructors, check our the glossary, or email a question to the Kenpo Forum and your question will be answered.

Classes and Times

All classes held at Countess Wear School, Glasshouse Lane, Countess Wear, Exeter EX2 7BS

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