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Combat Lab Systema Soft Work - Drunkard and Pillar


There has to be a balance in Martial Arts Training.  Hard, fast work is important, but so is the softer drills that we see in many Russian Systema Schools.  

At Combat Lab our goal is not to loose the principles of Systema by drifting towards a poor reproduction of MMA schools.  Instead we are trying to find a training method that allows us to use what we learn at slow speed in a more realistic environment.

This is not an uncommon practice.  Many martial arts styles either balance their students with hard and soft training or the students move from a harder art to a softer one as their skill improves.

That is why soft work has not been completely removed from the way we train and why we do a lot of research on styles that on the first glance look to be heading down the internal (soft) art route.

In this clip we are working with a drill from the Lubki drill that I first came across on youTube and was lucky to get some explanations on it from Arthur Rowell, who spent over 10 years travelling to Russia and exploring many different Russian Martial Arts Schools including Lubki.

The drill is called ‘Drunkard and Pillar,’ and is a great way to explore our bodies form when pressure is applied to it and how we can work with support created when an attacker leans into us.

There is quite a lot going on in the drill where the person playing the drunkard leans all his weight into the person playing the pillar.  One thing that is important is the pillar doesn’t simply crumble.  There has to be an element of support provided to the drunkard and this is not achieved if the person supporting them simply goes floppy.

This support is then used to manipulate their structure or removed once the drunkard’s centre mass is so far beyond their base of support that they collapse.




For more information on Combat Lab's approach to studying the Science of Russian Martial Arts and learn how to train it for self defence check out our other Systema blog articles.


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