The formalization of Kapatiran Olisi Baraw has required a structure of instruction and training that is recognised by the Philippines and at the same time relevant to westerners when defending themselves within the boundaries of the law. We believe we have achieved this.
Learning is structured via a ranking system of levels and stages. The first stage is covering the material in each level that builds to the black belt level. In each level the student is trained in a “style” and “subset” of the Filipino martial arts.
After acquiring the basics, the second stage begins with students being paired off for controlled sparring working on various patterns of offensive and defensive techniques to gain an understanding of the many applications of their newly learned vocabulary. Forms are also introduced at this point.
In the third stage students are asked to perform a free-style solo form of their creation. Free-sparring as a demonstration of the student’s mastery of the basic techniques is the essence of the 4th and final stage. This stage finds the practitioners displaying highly controlled strikes and defensive maneuvres. After the student gains enough, individual experience through hours of dedicated training we go to the black belt level and training changes from the concepts of self-defense to self-betterment. The knowledge of the martial art is now structured towards giving back. Instructors referee full contact matches; the basics of manual therapy are learned to be of aid for injuries and keeping healthy enough to continue in the arts at a later age. Philosophical principals of avoiding conflict are addressed in depth to be passed on to the novices.