our Something that Luke Thomas spoke about during his post-fight analysis of the Yoel Romero Luke Rockhold bout, the parry. The parry is the ability to deflect and smother strikes with your body to reduce damage from say a severe strike to a minor knick here and there. The limbs that typically parry strikes are the arms mainly the bicep and palms. Biceps are not big in combat arts for power typically, at a certain point size in arms hits a diminishing return think bodybuilders punching it looks like they would be powerful but speed is power, not size. The ability to meet that equilibrium is important to be able to parry. Once the equality between the arm size and speed to react and counter still will lead you to actually start deflecting shots.
Starting with the Old man special the cross guard block, yes a block first to understand the parry you have to learn to take shots on the arm without freaking out. So cross arm technique one arm across the top guarding from your nose down exposing the top of the eyes and forehead. Cross the lead arm across leading side of the chest down to your rear lower body.
Next, we move to a parry counter 2, 3, or 6 which leads to the Dutchie and your basic kickboxing combinations. Now we start the parry understanding to parry initially is just to smother a punch which jams the opponent up for a split second which gives you an opening. Here is the parry counter of the lines of the cross guard, once you feel the shot usually a straight punch to at the beginning with because the hook is another layer that comes with comfort and time. Once you feel the touch you have to recognize the feet there’s an adage in fighting that once you through a punch you’re out of position so it’s about who gets there first. Now the parry elongates that period your opponent will be out of position for in which time you land your counter.
Now we get into the strict parry starting with the cross arm parry. As the name implies you cross your lead arm underneath the rear arm, either circle out while separating your arms while you move to dissipate any power. Observe Yoels movements below to understand the body mechanics because of Yoels size it’s easy to learn from him because he’s not moving as fast as Mouse nor is he as small as Mouse making him a great example.
Lastly, the most flashy parry is the open arm parry where you are more or less catching the punch and turning the hands outward to deflect punches. Then you have the ability to deflect and parry shots off your forearm due to the speed in which you can react with your hands to advantage is a more speedy recovery. The downside is the open nature of the arm as you can see Luke slipped through the guard even though Yoel was aware of the shots coming. Now, this is a highly advanced practice that needs to be trained on pads and understood before it can be applied into practice. Don’t be the mark in the gym trying to do this in sparring on the first-day work through it on pads study video to really gain an understanding because what I’m providing is a cursory idea of the movements.