Some Observations of "Classical" vs. "Modern" Martial Arts [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Vanguard.45
05-22-2005, 11:12
It seems to me that the study of "Classical" martial arts has become rather obsolete. Within the group of "classical" arts I would include those with the following characteristics:

1. Lots of ritual (bowing, shoes off while training, wearing pajamas while training, etc.)

2. Point Sparring/ Overly Controlled Sparring (can't kick here, can't strike there, can't grab and throw the opponent to the ground while sparring, etc.)

3. Emphasis on a ranking system (white belt, camouflage belt, zebra belt, 10th degree ninja, etc.)

4. Study of "traditional weapons" that have very little application in the real world (i.e. nunchaku, kama, tonfa, 9-section whip, kusari-gama, etc.). When will you ever have any of these with you?

5. Unrealistic weapons defense (defending against knife/ gun especially)

Talking about this last point, if you EVER find yourself in a martial arts class and the instructor claims he/she will be showing the class a realistic defense against a knife or a gun, notice that the instructor will most likely be setting up a "best case scenario" attack. The knife wielder will come in on a VERY simple line (i.e. overhead attack, straight thrust, long movements) or the LONE GUNMAN will hold the gun out at arm's length right in front of the martial artist's face and stand still waiting for the defender to act.

This should be a RED FLAG. A person who knows even a little about how to use a gun or knife will own the unarmed defender 100% of the time- PERIOD. Sorry, but knife handlers see the world in four dimensions (height, width, depth, AND time) and tend to transition from straight lines to circles in nanoseconds while traditional martial artists are trying to complete their "X-Blocks" or other outmoded defense techniques. True gunmen in realistic defensive scenarios do not even draw their guns until it is time to SHOOT and will increase distance or keep their weapons out of reach while defending themselves.

As well, the average person would not even know that either are carrying weapons until it is too late.

Within the groups of "Modern" arts I would include the following classifications:

1. Utilize modern, practical weapons likely to be in one's possession (handgun, shotgun, knife, stick, ballpoint pen, etc.)

2. Sparring at all ranges is emphasized and the realistic transition between each is allowed to occur and develop

What are your opinions? I am not trying to disrespect anyone, but am trying to be realistic. I studied classical arts for 21 years (age 9-30), but now study a more modern art (the handgun, and yes, it is ALWAYS with me).;)

Vanguard.45

Fedaykin
05-23-2005, 00:44
A good article about realistic self-defense training:

http://jkdunlimited.com/article_info.php?articles_id=21&osCsid=b07fb71e6eba218f231dc4d8897c2594

Temet nosce,
Fedaykin

thingamajig
05-25-2005, 11:45
I would say it depends entirely on what your goal is.

There is certainly plenty of reason in studying traditional martial arts, if for no other reason than simply keeping the styles and traditions alive. In addition, any traditional school worth its salt strives to instill in the student respect, self-control, discipline, and true character.
For instance, I'm studying Kendo. And I agree - it is one of the martial arts with the least "street value." However, the "intangible" benefits are legion, plus, it's a very good workout, and is really fun. I've always wanted to do swordfighting, and been enamored with knights, samuri, and all that stuff. So for me, it has plenty of value, and is still relevant.

However, if your goal is to be able to scuffle in an alleyway and always win, then what you're saying is right on. You'll need to study the harshest, fiercest, bloody-knuckle art possible, that emphasizes taking out the other guy with whatever's handy, as fast as possible. There would be no fancy leaping kicks, you wouldn't have to "warm up" or start out with stretches. You'd just get in there and get it done, if you couldn't get away.



Then again, if society goes to pot, maybe I'll get to pack my Glock on the right hip, and a katana on the left, and we'll see if you're weaponless style beats my kendo ;a

MARTIN FISHER
05-27-2005, 10:25
Guns and edged weapons have been a part of martial combat for a very long time. What most people forget is combat consists of only ranges.

Projectile range which covers everything from ICBMS to throwing a rock or bottle at someone.

Then kicking range, then boxing, then trapping, then grappling. Use the wrong weapon in the wrong range and you get dead.

Talking about traditional vs modern really misses the mark if ranges are ignored. The idea a katana is a more deadly weapon then a Glock is only applicable if the subjects are in range where the katana can reach the other person. At 20 yards, the Glock is clearly the better weapon, at 200 yards, a scoped 308 is better then a Glock and the katana is nothing but a prize for the guy with the rifle.

thingamajig
05-27-2005, 11:08
Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
... at 200 yards, a scoped 308 is better then a Glock and the katana is nothing but a prize for the guy with the rifle.

;z ;z

I agree, but that's beside the point of this thread. I think Vanguard is talking about in the context of a typical American barfight or alleyway scuffle, is there any point in studying the traditional arts, with traditional weapons, since you're not likely to have a pair of sai or a manrikigusari handy in that situation.

MARTIN FISHER
05-27-2005, 11:54
thinga,
Gald you liked that! It is very difficult to say a traditional MA has any value in a street fight, since traditional MA vary so much. Overall, I would say the majority of TMA schools I have been exposed to are bullshido when it comes to a street fight.

But on the flip side, there are many TMA schools today that have been enlightened to the real world and trian effective street application to some degree or cross train with another MA to improve their chances in a fight. That was really not the case when I started MA some 20 years ago.

Roundeyesamurai
05-27-2005, 13:01
There is a point that must be injected here:

Has anyone in this thread actually trained in a traditional martial art? I highly doubt it.

One of the problems with the "new" movement, is to lump every method developed prior to a decade ago as "traditional"- thereby including the traditional martial arts in the same category as the modern martial arts (read: The watered-down, McDojo type of methods).

The very few people you'll meet (such as myself) who have trained in a genuinely traditional (koryu) martial art, bear absolutely no resemblence to the strip mall joints; although, as Vanguard so eloquently ;Q put it, we do "wear pajamas and bow". Spend a few hours hours in a genuinely traditional school, and you'll see a completely different environment than what you expected.

Folks, superficialism is a ridiculous thing- and making assessments based on such a superficial criteria as what a person wears, is a little juvenile for serious martial artists. Speaking on a topic without the benefit of an understanding of the topic, is equally juvenile- however, on the latter point, the state of ignorance is understandable, because no education had been provided (or sought, for that matter)- and now you know better.

It is equally juvenile to believe that all others should study for precisely the same reason you do- not everyone desires to be "ultimate combat guru"; for that matter, not everyone studies for combative purposes at all.

MARTIN FISHER
05-27-2005, 16:50
I, for one, have trained in a traditional martial art, and it was not even in this country, it was not a Mcdojo. I knew many traditional martial artists there who did use traditional weapons in real street fights. While there, I carried a set of nunchuku around with me all the time, and used them.

The only piece of padded equipment in the whole school was the canvas heavy bag. Compared to schools I have seen in here, this place was like stepping back in time 100 years.

I have no reason to think I am something special in the MA's. But, I have also been around MA in the past twenty years and all over the world to tell you NO traditional martial art I have ever been exposed too holds all the cards when it comes to fighting.

Since the average student spends less then two years in any given martial art, I can honestly say this, an average student with two years in a good boxing, kickboxing, BJJ, MT, or Straight Blast Gym type school will be able to take on most any "street fighter" or the majority of sutdents with two years training in a TMA school.

Its not very often the masters of any TMA come out to the street to play, so telling me a 7th Dan Sifu Grand Master can beat me up does not mean his art good for self defense.

And considering the FACT that only about 1-2% of the population study any kind of MA at all, yet still manage to get through life without many problems (and that includes police officers, military, et al) maybe it really does not make a difference, accept to us 1-2%?

Roundeyesamurai
05-27-2005, 17:00
Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
I, for one, have trained in a traditional martial art, and it was not even in this country, it was not a Mcdojo. I knew many traditional martial artists there who did use traditional weapons in real street fights. While there, I carried a set of nunchuku around with me all the time, and used them.

Might I inquire, which koryu budo you studied, and where?

Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
Since the average student spends less then two years in any given martial art, I can honestly say this, an average student with two years in a good boxing, kickboxing, BJJ, MT, or Straight Blast Gym type school will be able to take on most any "street fighter" or the majority of sutdents with two years training in a TMA school.

I don't agree with this for a second- the determining factor is the individual, not the method. This is as true now as it has been for thousands of years.

Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
And considering the FACT that only about 1-2% of the population study any kind of MA at all, yet still manage to get through life without many problems (and that includes police officers, military, et al) maybe it really does not make a difference, accept to us 1-2%?

No, it really doesn't. One wonders, then, what convinces an even smaller fraction of that small fraction of the population, to get on the internet and proclaim that "their (insert method) is the best".

thingamajig
05-27-2005, 17:12
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai
No, it really doesn't. One wonders, then, what convinces an even smaller fraction of that small fraction of the population, to get on the internet and proclaim that "their (insert method) is the best".

Probably for the same reason you get on and assert how doubtful it is that no one else has studied a traditional martial art.
This isn't a flame, just an observation/assumption.

Roundeyesamurai
05-27-2005, 17:23
Originally posted by thingamajig
Probably for the same reason you get on and assert how doubtful it is that no one else has studied a traditional martial art.
This isn't a flame, just an observation/assumption.

I say so because the proportion of martial artists who have, actually, trained substantially in a koryu budo, is extremely small. In other words, the statement derives not from prejudice, but from probability.

CA_DUDE
05-29-2005, 00:07
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai
I say so because the proportion of martial artists who have, actually, trained substantially in a koryu budo, is extremely small. In other words, the statement derives not from prejudice, but from probability.

You talk funny ~rf

Roundeyesamurai
05-29-2005, 00:19
Originally posted by CA_DUDE
You talk funny ~rf

Oh great, GNG has found out about this subforum. ;Q

CA_DUDE
05-29-2005, 00:24
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai
Oh great, GNG has found out about this subforum. ;Q

FYI, I do practice, and am interested in martial arts. Couldn't help but notice you were pouring it on a little thick Confucious.

Roundeyesamurai
05-29-2005, 00:32
Originally posted by CA_DUDE
FYI, I do practice, and am interested in martial arts. Couldn't help but notice you were pouring it on a little thick Confucious.

It's called the English Language- it's a great thing with which to have proficiency. If you find humor in the fact that someone is highly literate and well-spoken, then you're not worth my time.

I smell troll in these here woods.

CA_DUDE
05-29-2005, 00:40
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai
It's called the English Language- it's a great thing with which to have proficiency. If you find humor in the fact that someone is highly literate and well-spoken, then you're not worth my time.

I smell troll in these here woods.

It's called snooty and pretentious.

By the way, one would not "have" proficiency, one would "be" proficient.

CA_DUDE
05-29-2005, 00:42
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai
If you find humor in the fact that someone is highly literate and well-spoken, then you're not worth my time.

Besides, if you have to claim to be literate and well spoken, who are you trying to convince?

Roundeyesamurai
05-29-2005, 00:46
Originally posted by CA_DUDE
It's called snooty and pretentious.

By the way, one would not "have" proficiency, one would "be" proficient.

It's only "snooty and pretentious", to someone such as yourself (who, judging by your initial comment, probably engages in entire conversations consisting only of reiterations of the word "dude").

Either of the two uses is correct.

Originally posted by CA_DUDE
Besides, if you have to claim to be literate and well spoken, who are you trying to convince?

That only came up in response to your post.

Now, why don't you contribute something of value to this thread? Or, did you come over here solely to display your resemblance to Beavis and Butthead?

EDIT TO ADD: It would be nice if we had a real moderator here... ;Q

CA_DUDE
05-29-2005, 00:52
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai
It's only "snooty and pretentious", to someone such as yourself (who, judging by your initial comment, probably engages in entire conversations consisting only of reiterations of the word "dude").

Either of the two uses is correct.

Now, why don't you contribute something of value to this thread? Or, did you come over here solely to display your resemblance to Beavis and Butthead?

Your being serious about this aren't you? Your trying too hard. Relax and let what you say show people how intellgent you are.

Roundeyesamurai
05-29-2005, 00:58
Originally posted by CA_DUDE
Your being serious about this aren't you? Your trying too hard. Relax and let what you say show people how intellgent you are.

I was doing precisely that, when you came along and said the following:

Originally posted by CA_DUDE
You talk funny ~rf

Now, as asked before, do you have something of substance to contribute, or are you merely here trolling? I suspect the latter. Feel free to prove me incorrect about this suspicion.

MARTIN FISHER
05-30-2005, 10:13
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai
Might I inquire, which koryu budo you studied, and where?

Sure, it was the school in Cerro de Pasco, Peru, it says "KARATE" above the door, I am sure you know it. By the way, I have no idea what koryu budo it was, since the teacher could not speak Spanish or english and the entire class was conducted in Japanise or Chinese, which I do not speak.

On a side note, Cerro de Pasco, at 14,000+ feet in the Andies is the highest city in the world, you have to travel on the highest highway in the world, over 15,000 ft, to get to it. Talk about high altitude training!

I don't agree with this for a second- the determining factor is the individual, not the method. This is as true now as it has been for thousands of years.

And I don't buy that for one second either. And if that is true, it totally contradicts training in any form, because the victor is dictated by your false dicotomy of the individual over the training.



No, it really doesn't. One wonders, then, what convinces an even smaller fraction of that small fraction of the population, to get on the internet and proclaim that "their (insert method) is the best".

I agree, but the facts are the facts, every traditional MA I have ever seen uses the same tired "No true Scottsman" fallicy. They go on and on about how the true karate/kung fu/TKD/gung fu masters choose not to show themselves in the real world of MMA, boxing, kickboxing, or even a challenge fight. They are just too good to mess with the lower forms of MA. Or they are too dangerous and would kill someone with the chi/ki/monkey/tiger/crane/dragon power they have developed over the past 80 years of daily meditation, horse stance traning, candle gazing and brick breaking.

And, for the record, I have never said my art or any art is the best, every single one I have been exposed too has something to offer, even if it is just wild tales of fire balls from the finger tips, they are at least good for a laugh.

Heck, Roundeye, I even like the systema I have seen, what does that tell you about me?

Roundeyesamurai
05-30-2005, 13:43
Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
Sure, it was the school in Cerro de Pasco, Peru, it says "KARATE" above the door, I am sure you know it. By the way, I have no idea what koryu budo it was, since the teacher could not speak Spanish or english and the entire class was conducted in Japanise or Chinese, which I do not speak.

Cool, TYVM.


Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
And I don't buy that for one second either. And if that is true, it totally contradicts training in any form, because the victor is dictated by your false dicotomy of the individual over the training.

Why would it contradict training? The purpose of training is the improvement of the individual. If the purpose of training were solely the regimentation of the individual into a set way of doing things (the theoretical "best way of doing things"), then military training would be the epitome of hand-to-hand combat skills, which it most certainly isn't.


Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
I agree, but the facts are the facts, every traditional MA I have ever seen uses the same tired "No true Scottsman" fallicy. They go on and on about how the true karate/kung fu/TKD/gung fu masters choose not to show themselves in the real world of MMA, boxing, kickboxing, or even a challenge fight. They are just too good to mess with the lower forms of MA. Or they are too dangerous and would kill someone with the chi/ki/monkey/tiger/crane/dragon power they have developed over the past 80 years of daily meditation, horse stance traning, candle gazing and brick breaking.

There again is a significant problem- the McDojoistas use that as a cover for their own ineptitude, and again, they are about as "traditional" as McDonald's is "fine cuisine".

Virtually all of the koryu masters I have known, are all too happy to demonstrate what they know, IF they are approached in the correct fashion. Approach them with a desire to learn, and they're happy to accomodate. Approach them like you want a 'UFC' match, and you'll get nothing.

Ironeagle74
05-30-2005, 22:05
Roundeye you do sound stuck up. And the reason you get nothing if you approach a koryu master like a UFC match is because they know that they'll get *****ed.

Roundeyesamurai
05-30-2005, 22:14
Originally posted by Ironeagle74
Roundeye you do sound stuck up. And the reason you get nothing if you approach a koryu master like a UFC match is because they know that they'll get *****ed.

Well, thank you for both of those witty, well-thought-out observations. ;T

CA_DUDE
05-30-2005, 22:57
Originally posted by Ironeagle74
Roundeye you do sound stuck up. And the reason you get nothing if you approach a koryu master like a UFC match is because they know that they'll get *****ed.

No way he'd get ****ed up, he'd be wearing his magic pajamas, and then he'd bow you to death.

Ironeagle74
05-30-2005, 23:19
Or the Spock death grip hold.

grenadier
05-31-2005, 11:31
Originally posted by Vanguard.45
1. Lots of ritual (bowing, shoes off while training, wearing pajamas while training, etc.)

How does this inhibit one's training? Also, a decent gi is going to be more durable than average clothes, and will wick away perspiration better as well. Furthermore, by everyone being in uniform, you don't have differences that may cause a distraction in the training.



2. Point Sparring/ Overly Controlled Sparring (can't kick here, can't strike there, can't grab and throw the opponent to the ground while sparring, etc.)

The "rules" are in place because you aren't out to injure your partner. While anyone can complain "traditional controlled sparring is stupid because you can't kick someone in the scrotum," how is that going to really help someone learn?

You also seem to not realize, that many traditional schools DO allow some grappling and throwing in their kumite sessions. Again, controlled, since you don't want someone to compress their necks, etc.

The way I see it, if someone has good control, and can hit someone on a non-vital area during a friendly sparring match, then he can certainly land that same attack in a more vital area, should the need arise. If someone can pull a full force punch, so that it lands with minimal impact, then I would certainly have faith in his ability to land that same punch, 7-8 inches deeper. Same mechanics, same movements. If you want to throw someone so that they land in a more awkward position, then it's easy to adjust.


3. Emphasis on a ranking system (white belt, camouflage belt, zebra belt, 10th degree ninja, etc.)

I would be most interested to see what decent traditional schools use such things, such as your above mentioned "camouflage belt, zebra belt, 10th degree ninja" terms. No self-respecting traditional martial arts school would generally allow to call themselves ninjas, much less 10th degree ones.


4. Study of "traditional weapons" that have very little application in the real world (i.e. nunchaku, kama, tonfa, 9-section whip, kusari-gama, etc.). When will you ever have any of these with you?

You seemed to have conveniently forgotten other weapons such as the bo, jo, and tanbo / hanbo, any of which are certainly available at times.

Also, in your example of the kau sin ke (sp?) / 9 section whip, it's VERY similar in terms of its action, to using a chain.


from straight lines to circles in nanoseconds while traditional martial artists are trying to complete their "X-Blocks" or other outmoded defense techniques.


And which style teaches juju-uke to be applied in that manner? I would be most interested to hear from where you got this idea.


1. Utilize modern, practical weapons likely to be in one's possession (handgun, shotgun, knife, stick, ballpoint pen, etc.)


"Sticks" are taught in most traditional martial arts systems that teach weapons use. Almost everyone is taught the use of the bo, and those who want to learn, can certainly also learn the jo and tanbo / hanbo.


2. Sparring at all ranges is emphasized and the realistic transition between each is allowed to occur and develop

You still need some control, otherwise you're going to lose your students to sheer injury, due to the lack of discipline and control. Thus, you still have to have rules so that your students can live to train another day.

Now, just so that I don't entirely disagree with you, Vanguard, your points of being familiar with today's surroundings do have some merit. Attackers can be, and are frequently, armed, and it would certainly help if someone were more familiar with such things.

MARTIN FISHER
05-31-2005, 13:57
Originally posted by Roundeyesamurai

Why would it contradict training? The purpose of training is the improvement of the individual. If the purpose of training were solely the regimentation of the individual into a set way of doing things (the theoretical "best way of doing things"), then military training would be the epitome of hand-to-hand combat skills, which it most certainly isn't.

It is not the individual over the training. Mike Tyson doing Wu Shu would not be as dangerous as Mike Tyson boxing, yet it would be the same individual doing it. If Mike Tyson could pull off Wu Shu it would validate you saying it's the individual over the style, but that has been proven false so many times and in so many different venues it just does not fly.

There again is a significant problem- the McDojoistas use that as a cover for their own ineptitude, and again, they are about as "traditional" as McDonald's is "fine cuisine".

Bring on the real traditionalists, I always hear about them, but they are like Aliens or UFOs, there are plenty of people who have seen them, but they are so rare and secret they have no bearing on the day to day reality of anything, including martial arts or self-defense.

Virtually all of the koryu masters I have known, are all too happy to demonstrate what they know, IF they are approached in the correct fashion. Approach them with a desire to learn, and they're happy to accomodate. Approach them like you want a 'UFC' match, and you'll get nothing.

I do not have time or money to go and seek the true koryo masters you speak of. I learned martial arts because I was a guard in a jail where the inmates out numbered me by 6 to 1 every day. I had no pepper spray, no impact weapons, just me.

I felt I had a real need to learn to learn how to fight anyone, since I could not know the history of the inmates. I needed to counter them all and I did not have the time, money, or energy to get a black belt from some real master even if I could have found one, which, by your own admission really are a rare breed.

I do not really care to fight in the UFC, I am not a gifted MA and I don't like pain. But, when I see Royce Gracie go in there and win against any one from any style and then I look at the history of fighters with a base in BJJ/GJJ, boxing, kick boxing, and wrestling consistantly beating any other style. Well, lets just say, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what really works, its all in the stats.

Like I said, even if there are aliens and TMA masters out there who can take me, it really makes no difference, they are so rare, the stats tell me they are no threat to me. I choose to spend my time training for the more likely threats out there. I carry a Glock and a Cold Steel for the real masters you have been blessed to train with.

Roundeyesamurai
05-31-2005, 19:21
Originally posted by MARTIN FISHER
I carry a Glock and a Cold Steel

Insofar as that sentiment goes... if I didn't agree with it, I wouldn't be a member of GLOCK Talk! :)