One of the great, unique aspects of CM is its modular approach to learning martial arts and self defense. While most martial arts have a linear system - forcing all students to learn the same material in the same order - CM provides a choice of modules, allowing you to delve more deeply into the areas of the martial arts that you enjoy most, and focus on the techniques and tactics that are most relevant to your strengths. Below is a brief overview of each module, beginning with the foundational Glove Modules. If you would like to talk about any of the modules, or how they all fit together, feel free to get in touch any time or mention it at your next session.
The Glove Modules
Only through developing a solid, consistent level of performance can you achieve your goals and targets. The Glove Modules provide us with the blueprint for this development across the main areas that are likely to occur in a self defense or sparring situation. Developing the key skills and concepts delivered within these modules then allow us to “plug-in” the other modules when the time is right. Even without the additional modules, the knowledge and experience within The Glove Modules will give you a high level of ability and skill.
As you progress through these modules, you will be recognised for your growing skills and performance with the award of different coloured gloves. These awards recognise your ability to put your skills into practice in a performance setting such as self defense or sparring, and are a recognition of your abilities that is used by Crazy Monkey Defense Trainers around the world.
In addition, since these modules are generally larger than the "Plug-In" Modules, you will also be award a series of 'Laces' (1st, 2nd, and 3rd) within each module to mark progress and achievement.
CM1 CORE (White Gloves)
The CM1 Module provides the solid foundation of defense, balance and structure you need to succeed at any area of martial arts or self defense. Within this module, you will learn the most effective stance, footwork, strikes and defense to utilise both for self defense and sparring. At the same time, you will be learning to maintain and dominate the Rim Shot Range – the most useful default distance to maintain from an opponent, and the safe zone to return to when utilising the skills and ranges covered in other modules. No matter how advanced you get, you will return to the techniques, concepts and tactics covered within this module time and time again.
CM2 CORE (Blue Gloves)
Drawing upon the confidence you have developed during the CM1 CORE, the CM2 CORE Module focuses upon giving you the skills to "take the fight to the opponent." Through the use of Evasive Tactics and the unique CM2 Defense, you will discover how to utilise the Middle Range to deliver powerful combinations and elbows that allow you to succeed quickly and effectively. You will increase your confidence to the point where you welcome incoming attacks as the opportunity to take advantage of the openings your opponent has made for you.
CM3 CORE (Purple Gloves)
Occasions will occur, both within self defense and sparring, when all the distance between you and your opponent has been eliminated. This may have happened because you or your opponent chose to close-in, or it may have happened by accident in the chaos of the situation. In either case, it is vital to know what to do at this range, regardless of whether you want to grapple with your opponent or to break free to return to the distances of the previous modules. The CM3 CORE explores the Close Range, giving you the chance to control your opponent and to disrupt their balance and structure. Not only will you will learn the secrets of, what for want of a better term is called, “dirty boxing”, but you will also discover the methods and tactics of preventing your opponent using the same against you. Knowledge of the CM3 CORE allows you to both maintain your structure and balance when put under close pressure and to disrupt your opponent's to your advantage.
CM Integral (Bronze, Silver & Gold Gloves)
Though not a conventional module itself, upon reaching the CM Integral level, you have developed a consistent level of knowledge of performance across all three of the key ranges of conflict. You now have the opportunity not only to complete or re-explore any of the other modules you have yet to get to, but also to deepen your knowledge of the ways in which the three CORE modules fit together and to develop the advanced tactics we are able to utilise at each range. In addition, you will increase your understanding of sparring and self defense, exploring the Sparring Performance and Combat Intelligent Athlete Modules, respectively. The beauty of the CM Integral level is in having the strong, consistent foundation you need to grow and expand your martial arts knowledge and performance in the way that is right for you.
The “Plug-In” Modules
Though it is possible to work through the entirety of the Primary Glove Modules before moving onto these additional modules, it is far more common for people to do some or all of them as they go. This sometimes depends on the instructor (some will incorporate elements of the Kick CORE into the CM1 CORE sessions, for example), but most often it is down to your individual needs and interests. The unique element to this area of the curriculum is that most of the modules need not be done in any particular order and can be entered into at as deep a level as you want – it's all about what is best for you.
Kick CORE (K-CORE)
The K-CORE contains all the kicks of the CM system. While there are hundreds of kicks out there, this module focuses on those which work effectively and regularly within sparring and self defense. Most people will be exposed to this module either during or after the CM1 CORE through looking at the most fundamental and reliable kicks for sparring, as well as the important area of Kick Defense. For most people, this provides a good, solid kicking game that can be incorporated into the rest of the system they are learning within The Glove Modules; while others will enjoy returning to the K-CORE to explore different kicks, defenses, combinations, and tactics.
Stand-Up, Clinch & Ground CORE (SCG-CORE)
While martial arts in the 20th century traditionally focused upon one area of conflict to the exclusion of all others, more and more modern martial artists are recognising that to be truly effective as a martial artist and in self defense, it is important to be able to perform in all three “phases” of a fight – stand-up, clinch and ground. Within CM, we cover all three of these areas – stand-up (ie. boxing and kickboxing) and clinch through the Glove Modules, and ground through the Monkey Jits BJJ program. This module takes the techniques and transitions you have learnt within the other modules and gives you the opportunity to focus upon smoothly combining and refining them, so that they work together seamlessly. In addition, if you have limited experience of the Monkey Jits BJJ program, the SCG-CORE covers all the skills and techniques you need to survive on the ground, escape pins and hold-downs, and return to your feet.
Spider-CORE: Double Neck Tie (S-CORE: DNT)
There are three distinct but related forms of clinch taught within CM – Double Neck Tie, Modified Wrestling Clinch, and Straight Jacket Clinch (the last of which is taught within The CM3 CORE Module). Often taught around the same time as the CM1 CORE, this module looks at one of the easiest forms of clinch to learn and develop, the Double Neck Tie. This is very important, as even if you do not want to go into the clinch, you may find yourself there when working against a skilled opponent. Having the knowledge and experience to get back to where you want to be will get you out of trouble many times. Like all the “Plug-In” Modules, those who enjoy the DNT style of clinch can return to this module throughout their martial arts journey to learn new techniques and tactics to further develop their DNT skills.
S-CORE: Modified Wrestling Clinch (S-CORE: MWC)
The S-CORE: MWC takes the highly effective wrestling clinch and modifies it to work within a self defense or sparring environment. Though slightly more complex than the DNT form of clinch, MWC has the advantage of allowing you to control and secure your opponent to a much greater extent. This in turn provides you with a larger range of options as to how you want to progress towards victory. The MWC is useful not only for those that want to gain greater control over their opponent, but also to those who want to delve into the area of throws and take-downs. Though this latter element is not usually taught when you first go through the MWC module, it is one of the areas to which you can return if this area of the martial arts particularly interests you.
Somatic Martial Arts (SMA)
Though we often like to talk about gaining martial arts knowledge, the truth about learning the martial arts is that real understanding involves a intuitive sense of the mind and body working together. This area is often what separates the beginner from the advanced martial artist – both intellectually know the technical aspects of each move but the experienced martial artist has developed the ability to embody them in a deeper way that adds to their fluidity and effectiveness. This module looks at this ability with a view to speeding up the process and making you aware of the elements that really underlie it.
The Combat Intelligent Athlete Modules: Levels 1-3
Though all the CM modules are developed with self defense in mind, the Combat Intelligent Athlete Modules provide you with the opportunity to take the skills you have developed within the other modules and look at them in a purely self defense context. In addition to allowing you to explore a variety of common and not-so-common self defense situations, these modules also contain important techniques and concepts for handling dangerous or concerning situations before they get to the stage of full physical confrontation. These skills in defusing and avoiding potential self defense situations before they arise are the real secret to success, allowing us to protect ourselves and our loved ones without drawing on our physical skills. If we cannot defuse a situation, however, these modules also give us the confidence to apply our skills in a situation where the goal is not to finish a round but to get home safe.
The Sparring Modules
While technical knowledge and performance go together throughout the CM program, there are a variety of contexts in which we can address the idea of 'performance'. The following three modules take this technical knowledge and skill and place them firming within the context of Sparring. The Glove award system allows you to mark your milestones as your sparring performance gets better and better throughout your martial arts journey.
The Secrets of Sparring Performance (SoSP)
Rather than learn any new techniques, the SoSP module takes the extensive skills you have developed throughout The Glove Modules and gives you the opportunity to hone the tactics and habits that will have you sparring at a high level very quickly. Learning through a series of sparring games, you will gradually add to your sparring options as well as develop the confidence to deploy these options when under pressure. By the end of this module, your physical game will be effective, efficient and consistent, giving you a sparring game you can rely on and use as the basis for future tactics and styles.
Embodied-Mind Performance for Sparring (EMP)
One of the premier programs of CM, the EMP module takes a clear, informed look at the mental game required to perform at your best within sparring or any activity requiring focus and awareness. Best of all, this module gives you a clear, straightforward way of building your mental game so that you can perform at your best and quickly adapt to changing circumstances. The mental skills you develop within this module will give you the ability you need to succeed both within sparring and throughout life.
The Fight Compass (FC)
Another unique element of CM, the Fight Compass allows you to understand and explore the different strategies and tactics that are seen throughout sparring. On one level, this will allow you to understand your opponent's main tactics and effectively counter them. As you progress however, you will both explore and develop your own tactical strengths, as well as learn to flow and adapt to the situation. A mastery of all the main sparring strategies is the mark of a highly developed sparring game.