Company: Paladin Press
Tape Name: Crossada, Volume 1
Tape Cost: $49.95
Length of Tape/Time: Approximately 1 hour, 15 minutes
Number of Moves/Techniques: Approximately 12 basics moves + many options
Return Policy: Refund on damaged or defective tapes only
Experiences in dealing with this company: Fantastic
The Instructor: James Keating
Company’s Address: P.O. Box 1307, Boulder, CO., 80306
Company’s Phone Number: 1-800-392-2400
Web Page: http://www.paladin-press.com
E-Mail: sales@paladin-press.com


Primary Grading Criteria:

1. Production/Tape Quality: 9
2. Instructors demonstrated skill level: 9
3. Comprehension Score/Immediate Understanding: 10
4. Degree to which this will make someone a better Martial Artist: 8
5. Score on delivery vs hype: 9
6. Degree to which we would recommend this product: 9
7. Wasted Time ( The higher the number, the less " fluff" /repetition ): 10
8. Playback Score/Watching if over-and-over again: 9
9. Would I purchase more of this company's products:9
10. Overall grade based on cost vs. Value: 9

Grand Total: 91 % ( Good = 2.75 Stars ) Original Grade 90%


Secondary Grading Criteria:

1. Beginners benefit: Fair
2. Intermediate benefit: Good
3. Advanced benefit: Good
4. Time to benefit: Immediate for all some viewers. The use of large blades may not
be readily learned by beginners.
5. The need to buy additional tapes to understand this one: None


Written Summary:

If you plan on packing a 10 inch blade and using it in a duel, then this video is for you. All kidding aside, this video is definitely off the beaten path when it comes to knife fighting videos. Still, I enjoyed the material very much, even if only from an academic standpoint. James Keating is always a treat to watch on a video. He has a definite video persona, an excellent speaking voice, and is very articulate. He projects a menacing appearance which is appropriate for the material he is teaching.

Mr. Keating uses this video to introduce the viewer to European/American knife fighting. This means the use of big ( 10 inches or more ) knives and techniques comprised mainly of long range thrusting attacks. This is not an Asian small blade video although as the video progressed, I did see some filipino knife concepts slipping in. One of my first impressions as I watched this video was to say " That is impractical " or " That looks much too artsy ". But when Mr. Keating performs the very same techniques with a live partner ( who also had a huge knife ), these so called impractical or pretty techniques began to look much more logical. Rear cross over steps that look like Nureyev when performed alone are obviously designed to clear the body from incoming counter attacks. Hands extended to the rear as one thrusts are not artsy, but are meant to keep from getting ones arm hacked off by one of these monster knives. One must not jump to conclusions so rapidly as I did initially.

The trick to watching this video is not allow one's bias about knife size to interfere with what Mr. Keating is trying to communicate. Even if you never plan to carry or use a large knife in such a manner, you may end up facing one. That's when knowing the material on this video may save your life. As martial artists and combat enthusiasts, we must train for every eventuality and that is why this video has a place in your weapons training. To paraphrase an old martial arts cliché, to defend against a large bladed weapon, you must first know how to fight with a large bladed weapon

CJ


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