Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Cutting Tree: 2 - Jab Cut

This is an excerpt of a larger document detailing the 9 branches of the cutting tree. It is not a finished product, but I am putting it here to work on formatting and field any comments people have.



Jab Cut -  The jab cut is done by making a jabbing motion typically in a lateral direction to your frontal plane.  This creates the illusion of running in that direction, while it also loads your leg to push and move in the opposite direction.  In this move you are trying to exploit your defender’s tendency to (over)react to your movement and put them in a weak-reaction state.  As a result it is important to think about the purpose and placement of your jab in terms of your defender.


  • A jab is meant to generate a hip-turn, pause, or weight-shift by your defender.
  • A jab towards the frontal plane of your defender will possibly generate a back-step.
  • A jab along the frontal plane of your defender may generate a hip turn, but it also might cause the defender to shuffle and maintain their positioning.
  • A jab at a 45 degree angle to their frontal plane (an attacking jab) will force a clear hip turn.  At worst, assuming the defender absorbs it well, it will generate a hop backwards.


Placement of the jab (especially the 45-degree jab) with respect to the outside foot of your opponent is also important.  A placement outside the space between the defender’s feet (footbox) will likely create a drop-step or a hip-turn.  A placement inside the footbox will likely create a backpedal.

The last, most important component of the jab step is the acceleration out of the step.  It is your acceleration out of the jab that creates a majority of your separation.  The jab is simply reducing the reaction of your defender, allowing you to start your acceleration before they can react.  Loading your jab foot properly, and being able to generate force from that in the desired direction allows you to get separation from your defender.

Here are some examples of a jab cut:




A note about the last cut: it isn't very effective.  The cutter gets open, and gets the disc, but because they are in front of their defender their jab didn't really change the defender's reaction before motion.  In the first two the jab is perpendicular to the defender's frontal plane (first video is into the frontal plane and the second video is away) causing the defender to generate momentum in their frontal plane and in the wrong direction.

This one shows a double-jab (which is still a jab) more parallel to the frontal plane of the defender and causing a hip-turn.


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