Arnis Filipino stick and knife fighting


Structure of syllabus









Arnis or Filipino knife and stick fighting (also known as Escrima) is probably the most effective and practical system of combat developed using these weapons. A person trained in Arnis has the advantage over an unarmed attacker and can obviously face even an armed attacker with greater confidence.

Of course, the stick or knife is a complement to unarmed skills and the full range of strikes, kicks, projections, throws and locks can all be used in conjuction with a stick and/or a knife.

Arnis incorporates 3 methods: espada y daga (sword and dagger), solo baston (single stick) and sinawali (to weave) which uses two sticks as per the photo at the start of this page.

The Wu-Wei Dao Arnis system is a composite of various Filipino systems, principally those taught by renowned masters Rene Latosa and Remy Presas.

Arnis is taught alongside the unarmed techniques in the white belt phase of the Wu-Wei Dao syllabus.  It is the  first weapon taught to students because it is the simplest, easiest to learn and is capable of being made effective at a very early stage of training.

Arnis has supplanted the Chinese/Japanese knife and stick fighting methods taught in the Academy prior to 1985 as it is generally acknowledged in the martial arts world that the Filipino knife and stick fighting system is the most practical and effective. Note that Arnis is not structured as an "art" but is intended purely for combat.




Structure of the syllabus

The Arnis syllabus taught in the Academy under the Wu-Wei Dao system is structured as follows:

White 1

Knife: 6 angles attacks and defences

1 stick: 12 angles attacks and defences

 White 2

2 sticks: Double sinawali (standard)

White 3

1 stick: Box pattern 1 (primary hand)

White 4

1 stick: Box pattern 1, 2 and 3 (both hands)

2 sticks: Double sinawali 8 point Drill

Electives (Nidan 3 onwards)


1 stick

Disarms for 12 angles

Dexterity drill

Meet and Follow drill

Combat Drill

2 sticks

Advanced sinawali double drills

X sinawali

Single sinawali drills

18 Angles Drills


Knife and stick

7 count drill

8 point drill

Espada y daga