Nunchaku Combination Spins

The Nunchaku spins in this article utilize one or more of the spins you already know to accomplish a more complex spinning sequence. Many of these are straight forward and easy to accomplish if you have mastered the solo spins covered earlier. If you have not mastered these previous spins then spend some more time on them before proceeding. You’ll be glad you did.

Once you become familiar with any given spin below begin to practice the spin while randomly walking around. You will want to be able to use these spins in nearly any position so it is always good to practice these spins while you are in some form of constant motion.

Dual Side Spins

This sequence involves spinning the weapon vertically along the left and then right sides of the body. Begin with the weapon draped over your right shoulder. Now move the weapon down and to your left until it is along your left side. Now spin the weapon back, up, and then forward again along your left side until it is above your left shoulder. Move your arm to your right and lower the weapon to initiate a spin along your right side. Spin the weapon back, up, and then forward again on your right side. As it moves slightly above your shoulder begin the first spin again.

This is an easy spin to accomplish and requires little practice. You will want to ensure you remain focused on what you are doing so that you do not slam the weapon into a shin or somehow impact another part of your anatomy. As you become more skilled you may find it faster and more convenient to simply rotate your center back and forth as you perform the two spins. This will allow for a faster spin sequence and allows you to be more accustomed to movement while spinning.

Also pay particular attention to how the movement of the wrist can be used to better accelerate and control the weapon. Wrist action is a vital element in Nunchaku usage.

Figure Eight to Side Spins

Begin a figure eight spin (one or more) and as the spin reaches the bottom left corner of the infinity symbol break out of the spin and start a side spin on your left side. Now roll up into a reverse figure eight spin to the front (one or more) and eventually move into a side spin on your right side (again as the weapon moves toward the bottom right corner of the infinity symbol). Now move back into a figure eight spin and start the process over again.

The hardest part of this spin is appreciating when to move out of a figure eight spin to initiate a side spin. Going from a side spin to a figure eight spin is less difficult. It won’t take you long to master these transitions, but it can take a bit of time to appreciate how to do it fluidly and without thought.

Inverting Figure Eight Spins

This sequence involves completing one or more Forward Figure Eight Spins followed by one or more Reverse Figure Eight Spins. To transition between these two spins is the largest challenge in this sequence, but it is not particularly difficult. The easiest method is to simply roll the free stick behind your right shoulder as the weapon moves toward the final loop on the right side. You then simply move your elbow forward in the direction of angle one and allow the free stick to come to rest behind your shoulder or bicep. From there you can initiate the next spin sequence. Try it multiple times to ensure you have the feel and timing correct. It is not hard, but it takes a little practice.

Another simple transition strategy is to allow the weapon to come to rest either over your right shoulder or on the outside of your right thigh. When doing forward spins you can allow the weapon to come to rest against the outside of your right thigh as the weapon moves downward and to the right. Now you reverse the direction of movement and enter the infinity loop in the lower right corner to begin the reverse spin sequence. When you wish to finish this sequence you allow the weapon to come up and over your right shoulder after it completes the movement upward and to the right. Now you are again positioned to begin the forward spin sequence. You can alternate sides at will at any time during these spins via this simple procedure.

There are countless other ways in which you can exit the infinity loop on an up or down stroke on the left or side of the infinity loop and then transition to begin the spin in the opposite direction. Think through several different strategies for doing this and practice them until they seem natural. This will begin to provide you with the skills necessary to keep the weapon flowing continuously and to quickly adapt to changing needs. These needs may be due to movement of an opponent, unexpected free stick recoils, subsequent Kata requirements, or a sudden lapse in concentration.

Horizontal Spin to Over the Head Spin

Perform one or more Horizontal Spins near the apex of your center triangle then lift the weapon upward and perform “one or more overhead spins. Now lower the weapon to begin another sequence of Horizontal Spins. Just as a reminder, be sure you are moving your wrist around your head or you’ll hear this sound: “Whack!” There could be a number of other impolite sounds that emanate from you subsequent to that.

Backward to Forward Wrist Wrap

This sequence involves doing a backward wrist wrap on the left side of your body, followed by a forward wrist rap on the right side of your body. In between these two movements you can include any other spin and a form of transition between the two sides. Let’s do the sequence in the following order:

  1. Begin a forward figure eight
  2. Break out of the figure eight and do a left side spin
  3. While your hand is on the left side of your body perform a backward wrist wrap
  4. Move back to center as you initiate a reverse figure eight spin
  5. Break out of the reverse figure eight spin and do a right side spin
  6. While your hand is on the right side of your body perform a forward wrist wrap
  7. Return to step 1 above.

You could conceivable do any type of spin between the two sides. For example, you might elect to do horizontal and inverted horizontal spins instead of the figure eight spins. You could even elect to not do any other spin at all between the two sides. Simply move into a spin on the left side of the body, perform the reverse wrist wrap, move to a spin on the right side of the body and then perform a forward wrist wrap.

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