Escrima Concepts

Weapons Based Movement

Originating from the Philippines, Escrima (also known as Kali and Arnis) was used against the Spanish colonialists in the 1500’s. Escrima has since evolved into a modern, realistic and effective martial art though the study of other weapon and unarmed concepts; Balance, Focus, Power, Timing/Distance/Speed, and Transition. Everything which we do with a weapon in Escrima uses the same concepts for our unarmed applications which has the benefit of making Escrima Concepts an easily accessible martial art for street situations. We live in a society in which weapons are used widely in violent crime and understanding weapons can prove invaluable in protecting yourself.

Learn more about 'Escrima Concepts'.

The Benefits of Escrima Concepts

Escrima Concepts is a very practical martial art which is excellent for both self defence and fitness. The physical benefits of our Escrima Concepts classes include increased mobility, increased dexterity and improved coordination. As students progress through our syllabus and begin to use two weapons, they will benefit from improved left/right coordination as a result of using both their left and right arms with different weapons and leg combinations simultaneously. The added pressure of using weapons without hurting yourself, or your training partner, improves confidence and develops increased body control and awareness of yourself and others. This all leads to you becoming better equiped to function calmly in stressful situations.

Many of the techniques you will practice do not require strength or power since most of the power is derived from body movement and economy of motion; because of this anyone can practice Escrima Concepts regardless of their build or physical strength.

The Aims of Escrima Concepts

In addition to the physical benefits of our Escrima Concepts classes, it is our aim for all of our students to benefit from the self-discipline that comes from studying a martial art and the self-confidence that comes from knowing ways in which you could defend yourself should it become necessary. All of our classes are designed to help students lead a safe, happy, healthy and successful life.

Our Escrima Concepts Classes

In our classes we teach the art of Escrima Concepts as taught by Grandmaster Steve Tappin. This is a weapons based system and therefore you will learn to use weapons from your very first lesson. As the name suggests, this is also a conceptual system which means it is the idea that ultimately matters, not the technique, which is true of everything we teach at Cambridge Kung Fu.

The fundamental concepts used in our classes are: Balance, Power, Focus, Timing (speed and distance), and Transition. These concepts are explored to find the safest and most efficient way of ending a fight, using control of both your own and your opponent's weapon and body to make effective use of what you have.

EC - Concepts Tree

Initially we train with rattan sticks, then as you progress through the syllabus you will move on to use knives, palm sticks, machetes, staff and a whole host of other weapons, including combinations, for example double stick or stick and knife. From the outset you will also train unarmed using just your own body (which is also a weapon) against all the different weapon types. Students learn to interchange weaponry depending on its availability so they can fight just as well with a weapon or without it, learning to adapt the concepts to whatever weapons they are using.

Because you will be using weapons from the very beginning everything is initially taught slowly and with control, aiming to keep students relaxed under the natural pressure caused by using weapons. Once you are comfortable with, and proficient in, the use of basic attacks and defences, students can then begin to add some speed and eventually power.

Learn more about 'Our Escrima Concepts Classes' and 'Small Group or Private Lessons'.

Our Escrima Concepts Teachers

At Cambridge Kung Fu we are very fortunate to have learnt Escrima from some of the top Escrima practitioners in the world, including Grandmaster Bill Newman (Latosa Escrima), Grandmaster Brian Jones and Master Ricky Crofts (Latosa Escrima and Integrated Kun Tao) and Master John Morgan.

We are now proud to train and teach the Escrima Concepts of Grandmaster Steve Tappin, who is an internationally renowned master of martial arts specialising in the use of unarmed and weapons for self protection. Grandmaster Steve, along with his son Wayne, teaches all round the world to top martial artists and special police and military units. Throughout the year both Grandmaster Steve and Wayne visit Cambridge to give seminars which are open to all Cambridge Kung Fu students and to grade the students who practice Escrima Concepts in Cambridge.

Our Escrima Concepts Instructor is Col Maggs who is a private student of Instructor Wayne Tappin.

Escrima Concepts Grading

Grading days are held twice a year in Cambridge with Grandmaster Steve Tappin, and throughout the year at other clubs across the country. We also have Wayne Tappin visit our Tuesday night classes periodically to grade the Beginner Grades for people who have been unable to attend a weekend day. If you get good enough at your level but there isn’t grading anytime soon you will begin training the next grade - you will not be made to wait if we feel you are good enough to train at a higher level.

There are 9 Student Grades followed by 4 Technician Grades. There are also several Instructor Grades for anyone who wants to pass their knowledge on to fellow students. Learn more about 'Instructor Grades'.

  • Grades 1-3 are the Beginner Grades and students working towards these wear a White T-Shirt.
  • Grades 4-6 are the Intermediate Grades and students working towards these wear a Green T-Shirt.
  • Grades 7-9 are the Senior Grades and students working towards these wear a Brown T-Shirt. These are the grades when you can begin training to teach as well.
  • Students who pass their Ninth Grade have completed the Student Grades are then on the Advanced Level and wear a Black T-Shirt.
  • Technicians wear Black and Red.


Escrima Concepts Beginner/Senior

Tue Hills Road Sports and Tennis Centre, Cambridge 7pm

Escrima Concepts Intermediate

Tue Hills Road Sports and Tennis Centre, Cambridge 8.30pm

Escrima Concepts Small Group Training

Thu CKF HQ 11am

Escrima Calendar