Learning to fight is a great way to improve your body. It requires cardio, endurance, strength, flexibility and skill. The turnoff, however, is the risk of sustaining damage. If you value improving your body but don’t want to risk its destruction, then the balance offered by Savate Assaut provides the experience and the thrill of full speed fighting without the violent intent.
Savate Assaut uses the technical moves of full contact Savate – French kickboxing – but sans puissance: that is, without force, or pressure. You may hit, but you may not hit hard. In Assaut one still makes contact, but with control. Occasional hard knocks occur, but as a principle they are forbidden as a strategy. This permits the expression of a more interesting (to me) set of techniques – think jumping, spinning and other flourishes – because the risk posed by a single knockout blow is removed. Over the years I feel I have been in what may be called ‘fights’, I get bruised from time to time, but I am not expected to stand in front of an opponent whose aim it is to damage me.
The Assaut fighter must learn to settle their differences using cunning and guile, resort to technique and fitness as methods of intimidation, train themselves to sublimate aggression into precision. This teaches the athlete how to blend the intellectual with the physical, how to find control under pressure, and how to tame chaos with calmness.
World Champion, Savate Assaut 2014.