7. Of Paces

7.1. Of the Agreement of the Foot and Hand

The right leg ought always to be the strength of the right hand, and likewise the left leg of the left hand: So that if at any time it shall happen a thrust to be forcibly delivered, reason would that it be accompanied with the leg: for otherwise, by means of the force and weight, which is without the perpendicular or hanging line of the body, having no prop to sustain it, a man is in danger of falling. And it is to be understood, that the pace does naturally so much increase or diminish his motion, as the hand. Therefore we see when the right foot is behind, the hand is there also: for what who so strains himself to stand otherwise, as he offers violence unto nature, so he can never endure it: wherefore when he stands at his ward, bearing his hand wide, there also the foot helps by his strength, being placed towards that part: and when the hand is borne low, and the right foot before, if then he would lift his hand aloft, it is necessary that he draw back his foot: And there is so much distance from the place where the foot does part, to join itself to the other foot, as there is from the place whence the hand parts, to that place where it remains steadfast, little more or less: wherefore presupposing the said rules to be true, he must have great care to make his pace, he move his hand at one time together: And above all, not to skip or leap, but keep one foot always firm and steadfast: and when he would move it, to do it upon some great occasion, considering the foot ought chiefly to agree in motion with the hand, which hand, ought not in any case what soever happen to vary from his purpose, either in striking or defending.

diagram showing how hand should be aligned with and supported by foot

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