A photo of Corporal W.J. (Bill) Underwood, creator of Defendo and Combato martial arts and self-defence disciplines — a uniquely Canadian. Combato has 1 rating and 1 review. Steve said: This was a old book of self defense and combative techniques by author Bill Underwood. Bill Underwood (The “Little Giant Killer”) was Canada’s top Unarmed Unarmed Combat by way of his system known as ”Combato” ().

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June 14, combzto Last Updated December 11, 2: Underwood was in a white undershirt, dress pants and stocking feet. He wore owlish glasses with black frames and looked like an year-old Grandpa, with a stick-out belly, long arms and a kindly way. When he spoke, his accent betrayed his British roots, while his preference for tea — two bags to a cup — did not combayo at any internal menace or capacity to cause grave bodily harm.

Nothing is going to break. Robbie Cressman is an amateur historian and co,bato keeper of the Underwood legend. The year-old is an elite hand-to-hand combat instructor, working with law enforcement and military personnel around the globe.

Before Underwood came along, Canadian army recruits were taught to box and wrestle, gentlemanly stuff, featuring combatants bobbing and weaving and rolling around on a mat.

He was already in his mids and a veteran of the Clmbato World War when he volunteered for duty during the Second and became a trainer. His big idea involved teaching Canadians to fight dirty. Forget bobbing, weaving and wasted movements: After the war, Underwood was deluged with invitations from police forces, requesting his services to train rookie cops. Combato was too dangerous, he said.


Combato by Bill Underwood

Brunton met Underwood in when he was in his 20s. He wanted biill make a short documentary about super seniors, leading active and inspiring lives. Underwood was puttering around Toronto in a beat-up blue station wagon, teaching Defendo.

Bill told these tall tales, but they were true.

Kathleen, his true love and wife of 53 years, died in Underwood grieved by going to Las Vegas, where he met the police chief, disarmed him with a Defendo move — and was hired to train the entire force.

The big night was March 30, Underwood and Brunton walked the red carpet in Los Angeles.

Brunton was star struck. Underwood appeared in his element, waving to the fans and, once inside, working the room.

The art of Defendo: How a forgotten (Canadian!) martial art saved democracy

He was born in His father, John, was a chef and a miserable drunk. The men were small and fearless. They would challenge any man in the audience to best them on stage. Underwood would bring Tani and Maki tea and cigarettes between shows and ask them to demonstrate some tricks. He never forgot their lessons, and after immigrating to Canada inbuilt upon them, creating something new.

Defendo consists of four leverage holds, five hand-grips and 12 pressure points. Underwood detailed his methods in several books.

His fourth and final, Defendo: It includes a forward written by John R. Murray, underwoov deputy chief underwoo the Metropolitan Toronto Police.


It posits scenarios and steps to remedy them, with accompanying photos. For commbato, if you are being strangled from the front: Raise your other hand and point your thumb. At the same time, pull him toward you with the hand behind his neck.

Underwood was discovered by Undeerwood during a trip to California to visit his eldest daughter, Shirley. Underwood offered to demonstrate Defendo, felling man after man, until a call went up the line to bring some of the decision makers to the front desk to check underwodo the old guy. But Underwood died penniless at age 90 in at a nursing home north of Toronto. The human rag doll is now He has a undereood, a daughter and a good job, and has yet to encounter any thugs, looking to relieve him of his wallet in a dark alleyway.

Filed under News Canada. He was that, and more. A photo of Corporal W. You can make Grover swear, or not, depending on which sentence you’re thinking about at the time. Everyone knows a bad reno story.

Bill Underwood

This is not that story. Construction began next door — and then, they say, the nightmare began. Find National Post on Facebook.

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