Blocks may use one arm, two arms, a leg, or some other body part. Blocks may be divided into three categories according to the body section they protect: high, middle, and low. They may also be classified by the direction in which they are applied: upward, downward, inward, or outward.
- Guard. A guard is the positioning of the hands and arms that is used to protect your upper body and midsection. The basic guard has both fists held high with the palms facing the face with the middle knuckles just in front of the respective cheekbones. The forearms are vertical with the elbows pulled together as much as possible to protect the midsection. Shoulders are rounded and chin is tucked down. From the basic guard, all vital areas on the front and sides of the head and torso may be protected while still allowing the hands to quickly attack.
- Hard Blocks. Hard blocks use force against the attacking force. The attacking technique is struck with a forceful blow to either, stop, delay, or deflect the attack. Hard blocks are quick since they use minimal blocking movements and require minimal body movement. However, they may be painful or injurious to the blocker as well as the attacker. Under the right circumstances, a hard block may also be considered a counterattack. If the block is powerful and correctly placed, it may not only stop the attack but also may injure the attacker enough to convince him or her to discontinue the attack.
- Soft Blocks. Soft blocks use grabs or relatively gentle force to delay or deflect the attacking force. Soft blocks are generally slower than hard blocks since they require more blocking motion and more body movement. Since there is no forceful contact, soft blocks are not painful to the blocker. Depending on the block, such as a grab with forceful twisting of the attacker's arm, the attacker may experience pain or injury. Since soft blocks require greater blocking and body motion, the blocker needs more time to perform the blocks, and as such, they must react quicker to attacks than is required for hard blocks.
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