Wednesday, April 01, 2009

The fine art of hair pulling

Last week I posted a bunkai for Heian Shodan, the most distinctive part of which is the interpretation of most of the moves in the kata as hair-pulling. I promised a couple of more details. It turns out that hair-pulling is not just a grab-a-random-fistful-and-jerk sort of proposition. Here's how you do it...
  • Grab hair at the temple if possible - it hurts far more there than other parts of the head.
  • Twist - don't pull. It hurts far, far worse! Try it on yourself. Grab a fistful of your own hair at the temple and compare the misery of twisting vs. pulling. Now, for some relief, try it on the top of your head.
Notice that the down-blocks in Heian Shodan start high and across the body and they involve a pulling motion, bending the elbow as your fist approaches your center. Then the fist twists and the arm locks out into the down-block position. Turns out this is the perfect way to pull hair in a fight.
Grab, pull toward your chest, twist, push down, and hold.
That's a recipe for a great offbalance and distraction.
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  1. Hmmm....girl-fighting for boys! Ha! That's great, though - it hurts like heck. Who knew there was "technique" to hair pulling?

  2. Its a good day to be a bald guy, thats for sure :)


  3. Love the title of this post.

    We instruct that the best way to pull hair is to grab and twist. Never gave much thought to placement...rather...grab what is available. After reading your post, I am going to make sure I point out that hair pulling at the temple hurts a lot more. Thanks.

  4. Try pulling my hair and you'll be sorely disappointed.

    Having said that, many years ago, I worked in security in a hotel. I worked midnights which meant I was one of the guys who patrolled the bar and shut it down at night, etc.

    We were required to wear suit and tie, which I hated. I always wore a clip on tie.

    Well, one night a fight breaks out in the bar, and my partner and I try to break it up. The guy I'm trying to handle that he wants to fight with me, and grabs my tie!

    So he's staring at it in his hand while I lock him up and pin him.

  5. Why diasppointed, Rick, because your hair is too short, or because the bad guy will be left holding your hairpiece looking stupid?


    Yeah, security types should never wear a tie for the same reason superheroes should never wear capes.

  6. Too short.
    Too thin.
    Too gray ...

  7. Clip-on tie for safety. Clip-on white tie with tails for ultimate tacky. Be sure to wear white sox to be completely tacky from a/h to appetite. Pull/twist hair at the temple(s) and get kicked in the cojones.

  8. Theory goes, Bob, that it's hard to get kicked in the nutsies when the bad guy is bent double with his head twisted, getting pounded with the free fist. But I guess you still have to watch for stray limbs in the crotch.

    I like your sense of style. You'll get a kick out of my post on my bad tux experience...


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