Systema Martial Arts
The goal of a strike is to apply a direction of force onto someone and have minimal force or ‘recoil’ coming back into you. Consider a strike as a movement, just like walking or running, albeit more calculated, at its core, it is still just a movement. A strike should not compromise your own movements and abilities. It should be performed in a relaxed manner. Tension will ultimately rob power and mobility. This is especially true for the shoulder and hip area. Think of a baseball pitcher throwing a ball or a golfer swinging a club. They are completely relaxed as they go through their movements. It is one true way to achieving maximum force. By remaining relaxed and you will also find that your reactions will be much quicker and power much greater.
Good placement of your strikes and proper body position and alignment is also critical to a good strike. Keep a good upright posture and look for forgiving spots on the body to strike. Learning to place your strikes on the body is just as important as generating power. Training in this fashion is important and will help avoid injury later on when more power and movement is added. With such a variety of strikes and movements available this aspect of training is quite in depth. In short, a strike should fit onto a person like a key goes into a keyhole.
The importance of taking and giving strikes is seen as vital in the development process. No padding or protection is used when training. The belief is that it will create a false sense of safety and ultimately weaken the student. Training on heavy bags or using equipment to practice strikes is also not favored. The belief is it only builds the ego and does not allow for the consideration of the other to develop. Its usefulness is seen as limited and does more harm to the body.
The goal of strikes in Systema Martial Arts while training is to ultimately build a good fighting spirit. It also helps students overcome the fear of contact and build trust with each other. In this fashion, students learn to train hard and help each other at the same time.