Centerline Theory

Thursday, July 30th, 2009

Centerline theory is not one of Rory Miller’s core fighting principles:

Several people have explained it to me, “All your vital targets are on the centerline, so you must be able to attack his and defend yours.” That’s horse shit. The ears, the brachial plexus, the liver, the elbow, the knees, the fragile bones in the back of the hand, the quadriceps insertion are all good targets and all are off the centerline.

That doesn’t mean the theory is crap, the understanding of the theory is crap. You strike towards the center of the body to use the weight as tamping, like in demolition — the bodyweight keeps damage from bleeding off into space.

From that perspective the centreline isn’t the middle front of the body, it is inside, and when you are hitting lateral targets you are still striking towards the centerline. Some people use centerline as a quick ranging tool by measuring centerline to centerline, but when you keep the off-line targets in mind you can do disabling kicks in a tight clinch and sometimes damaging handstrikes at long kicking range.

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