Saturday, November 05, 2011

The Way of Spock

Striking Thought's post on Captain Kirk's fighting prowess immediately conjured up images of his first officer's skill in Vulcan kyushu waza. Kirk was a hack compared to Mr. Spock.

Actually, there may be some real science to the Vulcan nerve pinch, applied exclusively to the base of the neck. The neck is home to the apex of the (cervical) spine which enters the medulla and a ganglia of neurons, synapses and baroreceptors which are responsible for blood flow to the brain via the carotid artery.*

A shuto to the side of the neck, delivered properly, will cause unconsciousness, but high level exponents can perform a variant of this rather neat trick with little effort. I've been assured by colleagues that Seiyu Oyata of Ryu-te karate has developed a variety of hand strikes that specifically target the carotid sinus on the neck that has put the lights out on enough uke to quiet naysayers and skeptics. (On a side note: Oyata is the real deal as his services for demonstrating bunkai [forms applications] were in high demand in my area at one time. High ranking people from various Okinawan karate styles turned out in droves at his workshops and then modified his tutorials to fit their syllabi. Alas, nobody could duplicate his deft touch-to-the-neck KO move.)

Now if I can just figure out this mind-meld thing Spock does I'm in business.

*Lawrence A. Kane and Kris Wilder 2005. The Way of Kata: A Comprehensive Guide to Deciphering Martial Applications. YMMA Publication Center.

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