Eskrido

Eskrido, a version of Doce Pares, is a Filipino martial art that is a combination of Doce Pares, Aikido, and Judo, with lesser influences from other Japanese systems. It features standard eskrima stick techniques mixed with Jujutsu-style locks and throws that utilize the stick. The stickwork shows a strong sword influence, and indeed the sword, knife, and other Filipino weapons are also taught. It was founded by Ciriaco "Cacoy" Cañete, who continues to teach it in the Philippines and in seminars across the world.

History of Eskrido

Sometime in 1948, shortly after the Americans liberated the Philippines, Ciriaco "Cacoy" Cañete who was a classroom teacher at the Francis Academy (secondary school) in Balamban Cebu, Philippines, met a certain Domingo (from the neighboring island of Negros). Domingo did not hesitate to make known his desire to cross sticks with him, knowing that Cacoy was an accomplished Eskrimador. Late in the afternoon, Cacoy and Domingo met inside a classroom and verbally agreed to face off in a “Espada y Daga” (stick and dagger) skirmish. The weapons each used were: Rattan stick (29 inches long) which was held in the right hand, and the wooden dagger (12 inches long) which was gripped in the left hand. Squaring off in close range (one-length distance between them), both gladiators displaying complete confidence and bearing, quickly maneuvered their weapons while each was sharply eyeing for an opening. Cacoy, who had considered speed, accuracy, reflexes and sense of anticipation as his mainstays in a tight defense, went into a fast-paced offensive. Quite amazing was his delivery of a series of deceptive olisi strikes and dagger thrusts alternately hitting his opponent’s body, face and arms. Opting for a sudden change of timing and weapon movement. Cacoy, skillfully managed to outthink and outhustle his foe by executing olisi and dagger disarms three times in quick successions. With the breath-taking eskrima fight gaining momentum. Cacoy deliberately shifted to a rapid right foot sweep, causing Domingo to fall hard to the wooden floor. But the opponent, showing courage, vigor and determination, stood up proudly but was simply met with another fast foot sweep, forcing him to sprawl to the floor. Nevertheless, he regained his standing posture only to be encountered with a swift third foot sweep, thus finding himself flat on his back on the floor. Sensing the futility of his struggle for safety and survival against Cacoy, the demoralized Domingo decided to beat a hasty retreat towards the wall. Cacoy, however, glanced at his opponent who was evidently in utter confusion. He then mounted a full-throttle assault and charged with vast array of olisi and dagger strikes. No wonder, Domingo threw his weapons (olisi and dagger) to the floor, near Cacoy’s feet and then swiftly raised his hands up high to signal his complete and total surrender. Cacoy’s fight with Domingo could be considered significant because the combination of techniques applied by him to defeat his opponent marked the beginning of “ESKRIDO”. It was just one of the countless fights won by the author at a time when Eskrido was still in its infancy. The gradual growth of “Eskrido” was quite apparent from 1948 through 1956. At this point, Cacoy turned his special interest and fervor to the study of KODOKAN Judo in Cebu City, March 1956, under the able mentorship of Yuichi Hirose (6th Dan), official representative of Kodokan Judo Institute in the Philippines. Over the years, with untiring efforts, patience and dedication, Cacoy was able to develop a passion for rough-and-tumble sports, so much so that he became a judo competitor in regional and national judo championships in Cebu City as well as in Manila from 1959 through 1963. By way of enhancing his personal growth in martial arts, he then chose to undergo rigid training in freestyle wrestling in 1957 and also in 1963 in Cebu City under the auspices of the Philippine Wrestling Association. With renewed grit and vitality, Cacoy continued to expand his knowledge in martial arts by going into the study of Kung Fu, Shorin Ryu (Okinawa) Karate, Shotokan Karate and Aikido until 1971.

Having gained foothold in a system of blended and unified arts, Cacoy had to focus on the opportunities to modify, alter, innovate, devise, create and develop an effective and unique fighting art called “Eskrido”. The term “Eskrido” has been derived from three martial arts-Eksrima Jiu-Jitsu and Judo. It is also derived from the terms “Eskrima” and “Do” ce Pares. Eskrido players are known as “Eskridoist”, “Eskridistas” or “Eskridonauts” (players heaved into the air before they fall to the floor with the use of leverage). The most common and popular self-defense technique such as stances, hand and arm holds, leg locks, foot sweep, leg reaping, arm, shoulder and hip throws, disarms, hand strikes, elbow strikes, finger thrust, palm heel strikes, wrist twist, pushing and pulling method (for balance breaking), finger grips, olisi hooks, olisi thrusts, olisi strikes, butt strikes, punches, takedowns and many other movements, can be used in the art of “Eskrido” in an effective yet fashionable way.

Bibliography

* Cacoy Doce Pares World Federations - [http://www.docepares.com]
* Cacoy Doce Pares World Federations - [http://www.cacoydocepares.com]
* SGM Cacoy Cañete (2004). "ESKRIDO - Eskrima, Jiu-Jitsu and Judo Integrated (page ix & x)."
* Haines, Bruce (1995). "Karate's History and Traditions". Rutland: Tuttle.


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