Head Movement Training

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Welcome to the Fight Smart Head Movement Training Program. I assure you beyond any shadow of a doubt, this will change the way you look at fighting.

Let’s get right into it.

The first thing that you need to do is familiarize yourself with the 5 basic types of head movement, or “slips”.  Each one has it’s own purposes, and will have different results.  For example, a “Rear Slip” will allow you to retreat from your opponent where a “U-Slip” will move you under your opponents attack, keeping you close, and allowing you to rip very powerful counter-punches.

Before you worry about reading your opponent or dodging 50 attacks at once, you MUST MAKE THESE MOVEMENTS SECOND NATURE!  These are not things that you should have to think about, your body should just be able to do them.  They need to be implanted into your “Muscle Memory”.

Muscle memory is like a connection to your brain’s memory stores and your muscles.  When your brain has “told” your body to execute certain movements enough times, those movements seem to become a part of you.  You don’t have to pause and walk your body through them, it just happens.

If you played baseball growing up, you can probably pick up a ball and throw it to someone without any issue, and at any time.  It wasn’t like that for you all the time though… if your Dad ever video taped you playing ball when you were four years old, I bet you sucked at it.

The bottom line is, until you repeat a movement many many times, it will not be stored in your brain and body’s data-banks.  You have to do this stuff over and over in order to implant it into your body and make it second nature.

For that reason, we will start this program with the basic slips, and you repeating them many many many times.  The first lessons that you're going to be watching in the program come from the Free section of the website... (obviously they had to be included in the full program whether you've already seen them or not).

The “Straight Slip” -  (I also just refer to this as “The Slip”.  This might be the most important lesson in the entire Fight Smart Training Program.  This technique gives you the quickest, and least-energy-consuming way to make your opponents punch miss entirely.  This leaves him off balance, wasting energy, and easily smashed with a counter-attack.  This lesson builds off of a technique called the “Shoulder Pop” which I mention in the Uppercuts video above, but I’m not sure that you need to watch the video above in order to absorb all of this.

The Rear Slip – This is a fantastic way to make a punch miss, and it will work on any punch.  The only drawback is that most times, you’re not in a good position to counter-punch after you make the guy miss.  However, if you check out the “Fadeaway Hook” lesson immediately beneath this video, you can execute a rear slip, and then put your opponent to sleep easily.

The U-Slip – This is a crucial form of head movement. The U-Slip is the best way to avoid hooks and a damn good way to avoid head kicks. This technique will keep you safe, leave your opponent off balance, and improve your fighting angle… a must watch.

Now Build What You Know

The following training programs will only be done for a couple of days... then I want you to move to the Head Movement Training Regiment URL which will place a much larger emphasis on combining these individual movements.  (That page will be explained later).  You can print these initial workouts out if you like, and take them wherever you train.

I would recommend that you try to do these workouts pretty much every other day, but it's more important for you to reinforce the lessons when you watch them.  As soon as you add the slips to your arsenal, I expect you to do the workout that's associated with them.

Day 1 Training:

***You have a few workouts to do before you should be using the excel sheet to train.***

***There are extra sets in here in which I have you performing the same movements in a lefty stance.  They are extra but I highly recommend doing them to keep your thigh development even, and you never know when you might randomly end up with your stance switched.  These are marked with an asterisk “*”.

If the following doesn't make sense to you, watch this video on Slipping to the Left on your Left vs Right Foot.

100 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Left, Stepping on your Left Foot

100 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Left, Stepping on your Right Foot

100 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Right, Stepping On your Left Foot

100 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Right, Stepping On your Right Foot

100 U-Slips Back and Forth In Place (Empasize Shoulder Turn... NO STEPS)

100 U-Slips Back and Forth Stepping Out On Angles (Empasize Shoulder Turn)\ *100 U-Slips Back and Forth, Southpaw, In Place (Empasize Shoulder Turn)

*100 U-Slips Back and Forth, SOUTHPAW STANCE, Stepping Out On Angles (Empasize Shoulder Turn)

*100 U-Slips Back and Forth In Place SOUTHPAW STANCE (Empasize Shoulder Turn... NO STEPS)

100 Rear Slips Left

100 Rear Slips Right

Back to some lessons...

Dip Slip Lesson - The "Dip Slip" is really just another way to say, "Ducking".  There's no very fancy technique to this, you just want your head to be lower than the place where it previously was and any punch (except for an uppercut) is going to sail over your head.  This video explains ways to train this, get it sharper, add it to combinations, and some things that you can do off of a dip slip.

Slide Slip Lesson - The slide slip is a cool way to enter and exit your combinations, though I must admit, I use it far more as an exit.  This is a simple movement that many people overlook when it has so many practical uses in any type of stand up fighting.  This technique will make your legs stronger, in addition to making you safer.

Day 2 Training

100 Dip Slips (Orthodox Stance)

100 Dip Slips (Southpaw… this is just to even out your thigh development)

100 Dip Slip Plyometrics (Orthodox Stance)

100 Dip Slip Plyometrics (Southpaw)

100 Slide Slips (Orthodox Forward and Backward)

100 Slide Slips (Southpaw Forward and Backward)

50 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Left, Stepping on your Left Foot

50 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Left, Stepping on your Right Foot

50 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Right, Stepping On your Left Foot

50 Straight Slips, Head Moving To the Right, Stepping On your Right Foot

50 U-Slips Back and Forth In Place (Emphasize Shoulder Turn)

50 U-Slips Back and Forth Stepping Out On Angles (Empasize Shoulder Turn)

100 Rear Slips Right and Left Alternating

Back to the learning...

Now that you have the U-Slips and Slide Slips under control, it’s time to introduce one of the most useful pieces of head-movement equipment that you can put together for yourself.

The Slip Rope is merely an object that represents a punch, and you can slip underneath it to build U-Slips and Slide Slips, work on your muscle memory, and get a great workout that applies to fighting.  All you will need is a rope (ideally) attached between two objects, AT SHOULDER HEIGHT.

Speaking of ridiculously important equipment, here’s on that you’re going to need to get for yourself beyond all shadow of a doubt.

The Jump Rope is my favorite piece of training equipment… other than perhaps a heavy bag.  This thing has been responsible for a HUGE amount of the development in my footwork and speed, and it will do the same thing for you.

Click this image right here if you want to check out my personal favorite jump ropes by Rogue Fitness.

Shop Now Rogue Fitness

Penguin Slip - The penguin slip is a form of head movement, which can be characterized by rapid back and forth slips that will work very well for straight punches.  This is a great way to freeze your opponent, in addition to entering while keeping your head hard to hit.

Tyson Slips - In all honesty, I have watched some clips of Mike Tyson and been absolutely in awe of the things he does.  His movements are explosive, and his head movement seems insanely intuitive.  I've spent a LOT of time watching his form and his training footage, and here are the things that he does which differ from my other lessons.

Day 3 Training

Before you do Day 3's workout, you're going to need to watch this next video... this is a dynamic slipping day, so I want you to be using dynamic slipping exercises.

U-Slip Plyometrics - The name really says it all.  We're going to combine the U-Slip with a Russian strength training concept called a "Plyometric".  It's all explained in the lesson.  This is going to be both painful, and exhausting.

*This first bit is going to be very tiring… fucking do it.  I don’t care if you feel like you’re going to die, get through it, and don’t bitch about it either.  It’s time to step up and build some skills.

60 Seconds Straight Penguin Slip

30 Seconds Rest

60 Seconds Jump Rope (if you don’t have a jump rope, then shadow box)

30 Seconds Rest

60 Seconds Tyson Slips

60 Seconds Rest

60 Seconds Jump Rope

30 Seconds Rest

15 U-Slip Plyometrics in a regular stance

60 seconds rest

15 U-Slip Plyometrics in a Southpaw stance

60 seconds rest

10 U-Slip Plyometrics in a regular stance

60 seconds rest

10 U-Slip Plyometrics in a Southpaw stance

... and that's the workout.  Your legs are going to be sore tomorrow... take a hot shower and post about it in the forum.

Back to the Learning...

This next lesson is ridiculously important.  It's about 40% of my head movement strategy. Watch this lesson and absorb it.

Lateral Movement - The literal definition of lateral movement is side-to-side movement... don't quote me on that, I obviously didn't look it up or anything.  The point is, you don't want to be in front of your opponent if you can help it.  A great way to make someone miss, is simply moving to the side and this lesson will give you all of the details that you need.

Basic Angle Changes - If you haven't seen the video on "Attack Angles" (um... it's right above this one), do yourself a favor and watch it.  You need to understand the importance of that lesson and the importance of changing your angle before you skim over these details.  This is an incredibly quick, and incredibly effective way to move out from your opponent's direct line of fire, and stay safe during a fight.

This next one is not a head movement video, but you should definitely take a look at it so that you can have the importance of lateral movement and "attack angles" beaten into your head.

Angles of Attack - This is a very solid video that introduces one of the most important fighting concepts that you will ever learn." How do you hit someone and not get hit back?

This next lesson might be the most important lesson in the entire head movement training program.  I want you to be mind-blow by the end of this.

Any Slip Will Work For Any Punch - The name pretty much says it all, but how could this be true?  By the end of this video, you will be forced into the realization that by constantly moving your head in the ways that I've taught you, and by combining slips into combinations, you become incredibly difficult to hit.  This is some "wax-on-wax-off" shit right here.

Top 5 Common Combos To Slip - Before you start making up your own combinations to slip, these are 5 that I strongly recommend you work on.  In addition, I introduce two incredibly important concepts in this video… the "inside" and "outside" zone.

Day 4 Workout

100 Basic Angle Changes To The Left

100 Basic Angle Changes To The Right

100 Straight Slips Moving Left and then Right

100 U-Slips Moving Left and Right With Lateral Movement

100 Slide Slips Up and Back

100 Dip Slips

100 Rear Slips Both Sides

Introducing... Trav's Video Workouts

Admittedly, these workouts are not "professional production" but I thought it would be important for you to see how I make up workouts on the spot.  I pick a few things that I want to work on, and then I let my body flow for 10 - 15 minutes with my focus on head movement.  Have some faith that your body is going to take you where you need to go, and try to be creative when you're making these things up.

Now please keep in mind that I'm not Jane Fonda... and I'm not in the business of making workpout videos when you watch the next bit.

Click Here To Watch Head Movement Workout Number 1.

Back to the learning...

Look, I'm not going to be here to think for you when you're out on the street and someone is trying to punch your face.  Even if I was there, what am I going to do, yell out the stuff that you should be doing?  No.  Part of fighting is learning how to be creative, and let me tell you, people fucking hate it.  One of the HARDEST things for me to get my students to do (at times) is shadow box.

It should be so easy!  All you have to do is stand there and make up punches and movements but people freeze.  They don't want to think for themselves... they want to be told what to do.  As I just said, I'm not always going to be there to tell you what to do.  Inherently, you must learn how to make up your own slip combinations... and then you're going to shadow slip.

Adding ANY Punch to ANY Slip - This lesson is intended to make your slips and counter-punches versatile.  In order to be able to fight intuitively (where you don't have to think... you can just flow), you're going to need to make your body familiar with moving in any direction and throwing any counterpunch.  You never know where you're going to have to move, and you never know what specific punch will be necessary to throw, so this drill/lesson will get you good at every possible combination of a slip and counterpunch (only straight slips are covered in this lesson, but all slips can be drilled).

Making Up Slip Combinations - This video gives you some hints on how to be creative and select the slips that you want to throw together to create your own head movement style.

Top 5 Combinations On The Noodles - Here I show you in some detail how to train head movement with the pool noodles by revisiting the Top 5 Combinations that we looked at before.  The pool noodes are probably the MOST IMPORTANT HEAD MOVEMENT TRAINING TOOL there is, so I would strongly recommend you heed my advice in this video.

Just in case I didn't go in enough depth on you want to learn a little more about the pool noodles, here's the first lesson I ever filmed on them:

Slipping 1-2′s with Noodles – This video breaks down the form on how to slip common punch combos, and gives you some ideas on how to actually get good at this. I liked watching this video.

Now that you understand my expectations with respect to your creativity, it's time for you to get creative.  This lesson on "Shadow Slipping" in place is going to show you the way to do it.

Shadow Slipping In Place - This lesson is to get you to focus on being creative more with your head, and less with your feet (though it didn't turn out that way when I filmed it).

Day 5 Workout

Head Movement Video Workout #2. - Here's the last of the workouts that I managed to film (actually there's one more you can watch...) I seem to remember this one getting me tired.

Take a 3 Minute Break

Throw on some music and do 15 minutes of shadow slipping.

Back to the learning... this section is going to have a lot of stuff.

Horse Stance - Also called "Horse Riding Stance", this exercise has been used in martial arts for thousands of years.  You will get your legs strong, and flexible for slips and kicks, and you will suffer while doing it.

The Bonus Slip - In the spirit of freestyle movement, I ended up making up my own form of slip.  At this point, you need to understand that there are no rules, and any that I've given you need to be broken.  This video will show you a little bit more about the freedom that you have in shadow slipping and head movement training.

Shadow Slipping With Lateral and Head Movement - So the last video was to get you to freestyle with your mostly your  head, now this one is to get you to think a lot about moving your feet along with it.  This video shows me running through a shadow slipping workout with a lateral focus.

Keeping Distance - If you watch my street martial arts challenge video, you will notice that I don't let the guys swarm me.  If they get too close, it's a lot easier to hit you.  This is one reason why I move on angles so much... it opens up new avenues in which I can create space.  I use the 5 techniques mentioned in this video to make that space, and keep me safe.

The Jab – This punch is pretty much the fundamental basis for any fighting style.  You need this thing to crack people in the face when they get too close to you.   I use a number of high school prom metaphors in this video, and Casey and I threw together what we though to be some funny clips to represent that shiz… at least we think we’re funny.

The Feint – This is your first lesson in deception.  A feint is a fake… you fake as though you’re going to throw a strike in order to either see what your opponent is about to do, or to set up a vicious combo.  This is a very important and powerful lesson in fighting.

The Front Kick - This is the longest attack in your arsenal... seems like a good one to use to make some distance.  A well placed and well delivered front kick can send someone flying through a wall, this is not just a positioning attack.

The Shoulder Bump - This is one of my favorite ways to get people away from me, and I have knocked a lot of people's wind out with this... in addition to knocking them on the floor.  Combining a slide slip with a shoulder thrust is all it takes.

Day 6 Workout

Today is going to consist of working the tools that you need to create distance and shadow slipping.

First, go outside and find yourself a nice open road with no traffic... a field will do... anywhere where you can constantly back up.  Then you're going to use the technique that I taught you to back up for 5 minutes straight IN YOUR STANCE.  I want you to take small steps, keep distance between your feet, and keep going no matter how bad it burns.  Until you're used to it, moving around in your stance is not going to be easy.

Then Shadow Box for 5 Minutes

Switch to a southpaw stance and back up for 5 minutes.  Back up down the block, down the beach, down the gym, BE CAREFUL but you can probably go down a treadmill (I would fall).  Five minutes in a southpaw stance.

Then Shadow Slip For 5 Minutes

Jump Rope For 5 Minutes

Shadow Slip For 5 Minutes

Back to the learning...

Now that you are getting comfortable with these movements, it's time to start teaching you the finer details of head movement and elusive training.

Reading your opponent - This lesson tells you all of the things that actually matter about reading your opponent.  You already know how the slip game works with respect to simply moving your head, now you have to learn when to move your head, and what to look for.  Don't worry about reading the difference between hooks and straights, I mention it briefly.  As you practice with a real partner, you're going to see that it's not very difficult to distinguish between the two an turn your slips into rolls.

Actually Dodging Punches - Ok... you pretty much know all of my tricks, now you have to put them into action.  The only way that you will ever be able to dodge every punch in a street fight is if you truly practice it with a real partner.  Otherwise, when the time comes, you will not be relaxed and your movements will pr0bably be too drastic.  This video teaches you how to practice this stuff safely, and gives another demonstration of head movement in action.

You have officially graduated to the next step in the head movement training program, you are about to be introduced to the next level of head movement training.

First, watch this really quick video on ring timers.  They will help your training immensely with the types of work and rest intervals that you're doing.

Ring Timers - A handy piece of equipment that eliminates your need to look at a clock during your workout.

Now, watch this video on The Head Movement Training Regiment

Any workout you do from this point on will always start with 10 minutes of shadow slipping.  You will get warmed up and express your creativity every single time you walk into the gym.

Every time you do a scripted workout, I want you to push yourself harder and harder.  You need to dig deep and see if you can get one more round every time.   I know it's tough, and trust me I know that these combinations can be tough to remember.  The harder you push, the sharper you're going to be in a street fight circumstance so give it all you got, and try to get to another level every single time.

Now we can add some attacks to your head movements...

In no particular order, I'm going to start feeding you attacks and combinations that I pull from the Ultimate Training Program.  As I make more and more lessons that contribute to the Ultimate library, when they involve head movement, I will add them in here and send everyone an email.  You are going to be privy to stuff that no one else is.

Lateral Movement Plus Attacks - This lesson introduces you to the concept of moving sideways and attacking at the same time.  I feel like I need to add another sentence here to give this link the paragraphical power that it deserves.

The following are two examples of lateral movement with attacks:

U-Slip With a Punch Underneath - If you land this, it's game over... no doubt about it.  You make your opponent miss and then send a crushing blow to his unsuspecting body... which also happens to be in the perfect position to be decimated.

Switch Kick Angle Change – This lesson will give you a true idea of the versatility of the switch kick. You already know that it’s a powerful strike, now you will get to see a few ways to use the switch to position your body safely, taking angles, while also ripping a very powerful kick to your opponents midsection.

The following attacks use the Slide Slip technique to move in and do some crushing damage:

Sliding Into A 6-3 – Here’s a sweet way to enter in an elusive, confusing fashion, and rip your opponent with two power strikes.

Duck Under Osotogari – This is a tricky takedown that ends up smashing the back of somebody’s head into the ground. If you do this on the wrong surface, someone could end up with brain injury or worse, so don’t say I didn’t warn you. Also, we end up on a Tangent about the time when Christian Bale freaked the F out on the set of Batman… Good times.

The following attacks are executed directly off of a straight slip, and they rip some great knockout punches.  (The slip 5-2 and slip 5-2-3 might have some repeated information)

Slip 5-2 – The slip 5 -2… this is a great way to make someone miss a punch, and then blast him in the face with two quick and easy to throw strikes. The cool thing about this one is that the left uppercut positions the guys head perfectly for throwing a right straight… quick, easy, and effective.

The liver shot can easily be thrown as a straight punch counter... just wait for the guy to initiate his punch and the "Right shoulder dropping forward" should simply be a slip.

The Liver Shot – You might not have known that you can make your opponent fall to the ground and shit himself if you hit him in the liver. This outlines a very specific method of punching which is designed to damage and cause massive stress to internal organs. The only complaint that I have about this video is that I leave out a number of very important details about how to generate hook power… however, you can get these from the hook video, so it’s really no big deal. I guess it’s probably better to avoid being redundant.

The Slip 5-2-3 – This is a great counter punch combination, and it builds on our previous weeks two strike combination (The Slip 5-2).  This one adds a vicious hook to the combo… make the guy miss and then hit him with three murder shots.  This video also introduces you to the concept of juggling heads.

The Slip 6-3 - This is building a nice little counter-punch series from the other side... that is, starting with your right uppercut.

The Slip 6-3-2 – Let's build on that last combo and make it an additional punch more badass.

The following attacks should be executed at the same time as your opponents attack:

Punching with head movement - This video gives you the basic tutorial of how to strike your opponent, while moving your head, WHILE HE'S TRYING TO STRIKE YOU AT THE SAME TIME.  This is a great way to freak someone out (as well as knock him out), and make him not want to attempt any further strikes.

Straight Punches To The Body – Sending a punch straight to the body is not as simple as you might think.  There are a couple of things to keep in mind in your for which will make the punch more powerful, and keep you very safe.  Any technique that can do damage while remaining low risk should be incorporated into your arsenal.

A Sweet Set-Up For The Overhand Right – (You might want to watch the overhand right lesson first.) I taught a kid this set up who had already decided to do a tough-man competition before I started training him… then he tore his left shoulder to pieces playing rugby. He only had one arm with which to fight… and he knocked the kid out cold. So satisfying…

The Cut Kick - This is a clever way to add some head movement to your roundhouse... it can be used either as a counter punch or just a way to make your roundhouse safe so you know that you won't get punched in the face while throwing it.

The Following are some bonus attacks that I wanted to throw in here for the hell of it:

Entering and Striking With Head Movement (an example combo) – This is a good set-up because of the sound principles that it applies, but each principle involves techniques that require some practice. Striking with head movement is hard… in both slips used in this video. Also, moving to the right and immediately round-housing is going to take some practice. This is not a new guy combo, and involves fighting in high risk areas close to your opponent.

(Slip + Cross) + Hook = Damage – This is a way to attack a guy while moving your head to get in close, and then ripping a solid hook to finish the job.  I love entries with head movement, and I love hooks… combine the two and I giggle like a school girl.

That's the end of the videos...Keep on working hard, and keep pushing yourself to the next level.  Go through the training regiment three times per week until you complete the entire schedule... take a week off, and do it again.  After one or two cycles of this in conjunction with some live training, you will be ready to go out on the street and make your own YouTube videos.

Let me know if you have any questions, and congrats on getting through the program.

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