These are defensive blocks because they are executed from the primary defensive grip.
Instructions for Technique
High Block - over the head follows the same mechanics of a typical karate high block so that the Monouchi is the blocking the strike as it runs down the forearm.
Inside to Outside Middle Block - traveling from the center line of the body outwards to block an incoming strike. Here the mechanics vary slightly from a typical karate middle block with the palm of the fist facing up. Here a hooking block is actually used but with the sai in hand, with the palm facing down. Again similar to a standard middle block but with the the palm down so that the monouchi of the sai is able to block the attack.
Outside to Inside Middle Block - traveling from the outside of the body to the center to block an attack. This is done the same as a typical karate soto uke block but with sai in hand.
Low block - follows the same mechanics as a typical karate low block but with sai in hand.
Note: All blocks can sub-sequentially hook the attacking weapon such as a stick, staff, or sword with the yoku.
The first part of this video shows these defensive blocks.
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