From Joe Maraña …

Guro Bob introduced me to what I consider the finest edged weapons curriculum I have ever seen. From day one we covered projectiles, flexible weapons and short blade material.  Never had I experienced a system or style that was as encompassing of so many types of weaponry, ranges of combat and depth of material so immediately to a student.

In my short 15 years of formal martial arts training in Taekwon-Do, Doce Pares Eskrima, Tien Shan Pai Kung Fu, Inosanto-Lacoste Kali, Majapahit Silat and San Miguel Eskrima, what sets Sayoc apart from other systems or styles is not only in the breadth and depth of material, but the methodology of instruction.  The curriculum is presented in a way that is logical, intuitive and self-correcting.

Guro Bob’s instruction is of the highest caliber.  His precision in timing and technical skill is surpassed only by his ability to teach and explain concepts so that the material is immediately applicable, and his students highly effective practitioners.  Guro Bob’s instruction develops not only high level of skill but fosters the kind of questioning and critical thinking that makes this art a thinking person’s art.  As his students we not only installed correct movements, but understood why they worked and why other movements would not.

Many of the concepts that Guro Bob used to teach me I now incorporate as an Apprentice Instructor.  Anytime I fly back home to Maryland I try to make it out and train with Maharlika Martial Arts.  I cannot recommend Guro Bob and his guys highly enough.

Joe Maraña (Signal Hill, CA)


From Greg D. …

As a law enforcement officer I was looking for a martial arts program that would better prepare me for real life situations on the streets. I have tried several different styles of martial arts through out the years such as karate, brazilian jujitsu and wrestling. Nothing that I learned seemed to prepare me for an armed edged weapon encounter. Being a law enforcement officer, I encounter edged weapons more often than guns.

I was very pleased to find Guro Dr. Bob giving instruction in the Sayoc system. The Sayoc system is an edged weapons based martial art and gives excellent training in dealing with the threat of edged weapons. I would highly recommend Dr. Bob and Maharlika Martial Arts. Dr. Bob is an excellent practitioner of the Sayoc system, and no matter what level you have progressed to you will always have something new and challenging to learn.

Greg D. (19-year veteran police officer)


From Jonathan Han …

Guro Bob is an exceptional teacher. I have trained with many teachers of various martial art styles and I can testify that the knowledge and skills Guro Bob brings to his classes are among the best. The classes are fun and creative while serious in the pursuit of practical skills to survive the grim reality of blade encounters. If you study with Dr. Bob, you WILL increase your chance of surviving a knife attack.

For years, I have trained in knife techniques of other styles that may have worked in another time period but seemed unrealistic to today’s scenarios. Training with Guro Bob showed me the dangers of having faith in archaic techniques that are not rigorously tested and refined to be practical in a modern setting. I learned about the many uses and defensive tactics against knives in ways that I have never imagined. After six weeks of training in Sayoc, I learned more about the proper deployment and protection from a blade than sixteen years of training in another weapons based art.

If anyone is serious about learning blade work in the Maryland region, I recommend paying Guro Bob a visit. The flow drills, speed training, coordination development, and over all blade awareness you gain is well worth the investment. You also get to wear cool black BDUs.

Jonathan Han (Washington, DC)


First impression …

After the Introductory Seminar we held at the Krav Maga school, I found the following blog entry from one of the participants:

I was going to stick around for the Level 1 class but instead I went to the Knife demonstration in the other classroom.


Someone can really hurt you with a knife if they know what they’re doing. 360s won’t do it. Inside defenses won’t do it. That became clear pretty quick.

The guys who’ve been doing it awhile were all wearing belts with knives in them. Knives, as in four or five. Different shapes and sizes. They’d pull em quick, put them back without looking and change grips without trouble.

I dropped my knife five times.

I was using a “sharky”, the plastic knives we use in Krav Maga. They have shark fin shaped holes in the blade. The Silak guys were using metal knives with dull blades.

A few basics. If you drop a knife you don’t pick it up. In a knife fight you can’t worry about a dropped knife, if you do you’ll get hurt.

When you hand a knife to someone else, you hold the handle with the blade pointed down, and hook your fingers around one side. The other person hooks their fingers around the other side and get a grip. When you feel they’ve gotten a grip you let go.

Templates. Templates are a group of targets and the strikes used to attacke them. The template we saw included the jugular on each side of the kneck, the “blue worm” just under the belt line, the line from the sternum to the belly button and the peritenium, the spot past the groin directly between the legs.

You strike the kneck with stabs. First with the palm down, pushing through the neck and into the neck toward the windpipe at the same time. The goal is to cut the jugular. You turn the wrist over so your palm is up and do the same strike.

The knife comes down and you slash across the belt line, palm up.

You raise the knife to the sternum and slash down with the meat of your hand going toward the ground.

That cut goes down and your hand goes with it, then you bring it up and stab the peritenwhatever. Its either perineum or peritenium.

I’ll write more later.