^What SifuJason said pretty much sums up my thoughts on training the off side. I'll note that SifuJason just said train one side first to become proficient than focus on the other side. I also like what Poidog said about training the weak side first then train the strong side later. In Balintawak the core of the art is the counter to counter drill which is done single stick with the right hand because most people are right handed. Since I am left handed I was forced to train my weak side(right) first, as a result I found it rather easy to switch to my left. We play around doing the drill left handed and left vs right handed ect. but a lot of it has to be modified if players are using different hands, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.
We train everything both left- and right-handed, starting any drill with our non-dominant (or as Crafty Dog calls it, "complimentary") hand, and then the dominant.
Not only does it help when it comes to wielding two weapons, but if our goal is to be able to use both hands intelligently and independently, then they each have to take turns leading.
And I really like the idea of using the complimentary/non-dominant hand first. If you're a righty, and you learn a drill right-handed, you will of course suck when you switch. However, if you start the drill as a lefty, and then switch, you'll feel like a rock star at the continued improvement in performance.
I find that with two sticks, I tend to use a different guard/game depending on which is leading. With a right lead, I like to have a chambered stance or modified boxing style stance, but with the left lead, I like a right overhead cover with the left one held across ready to witik. I think this has to do with my comfort level with my right vs left hand. The strategies and angles I use in either lead are still somewhat right-side dominant either way (right lead with conventional shuffles, left lead stepping through counters after defending with the right roof).
We work on using dominant side and offside.
I've been trying to focus on the off side more, just to see where I stand, and I notice that with my left hand, I am significantly slower than the right hand. Also when defending against incoming strikes I am slower when I have the left hand forward. This is kind of funny, because that is actually my boxing stance which I only use in boxing! I think the issue is that I am doing more thinking when my left hand is forward because I'm not as comfortable with it.
Yes, me too - funny, eh?
Originally Posted by Permalost
I don't think I could list what I do differently left- vs. right-lead, but there are differences, all the way down to footwork.