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Old July 9, 1999, 02:04 PM   #1
Skorzeny
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I'll start.

So what do you people here think are some good "street-effective" unarmed combat arts?

Skorzeny

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For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Sun Tzu

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Old July 9, 1999, 06:09 PM   #2
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Old July 9, 1999, 07:54 PM   #3
Rich Lucibella
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Any style you *really* work at...that means use your mind in training (and debriefing) as much as your body. Your mind will lead your training in the right direction.
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Old July 10, 1999, 12:22 PM   #4
many
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DEAR FRIEND:FOR PURE PERSONAL DEFENSE I THINK AIKIDO OR HAPKIDO ARE VERY GOOD.
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Old July 10, 1999, 12:49 PM   #5
Macoute
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For the martial arts layman, I think that the Marine Corps' LINES (Linear In-Fighting Neural-Override Engagment System) is hard to beat. It is fast to learn, and relatively easy to maintain to proficiency with it. However, I do not know of anyone teaching it in the civilian market, but someone probably does.
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Old July 10, 1999, 10:49 PM   #6
Rob Pincus
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Personally, As Rich alluded to, I don't think there is any special "art" that is going to give you a significant edge on the street.

In fact, I think that dedication to any certain form or art can be the beginnning of a downfall for the real on the street type fighter. The key is to expose yourself to a variety of ideas and take from each of them what you think is the most efficient and effective means of self-defense. Take what bits are most likely to stop your attacker, practice them and be prepared to use the skills you developed without reservation.

Self-Defense is not in a book or an ancient secret, it is in the mind, A mind which is capable of effectively using the body as a tool.

My advice would be to find a dojo which stresses practical self-defense, regardless of the particular Art they specialize in.
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Old July 11, 1999, 09:52 AM   #7
fubsy
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1. Decide if your willing to put the time energy and dedication into learning. If you are find a martial arts traininghall/dojo or a boxing school or a jujitsu hall.....all of the martial arts have techniques that work, most people dont learn or worse dont train how they are going to fight(kinda like shooting),.....I dont know what area of the country your in but in my area there are many martial "arts" academys/doj0's....In my mid 30's I took up issinryu, and never regretted it, I never acquired a high skill level(belts), but I fought three days a week, mostly against the black belts as our classes were quite small, I experienced 4 or 5 cracked ribs, seperated left shoulder and pulled ligaments in the right hand, sounds horrible right.........I loved every minute of it, I came to the fighting arts late in life so I was already out of my prime so to speak, but what I learned and what I can do gives me quite a bit of satisfaction,...isshinryu is a complete system, and is very fight oriented not only do they do standup style of fighting they encorporate jujitsu techniques as well, along the pressure point strikes and akido style techniques............My only regret is I didnt find them sooner.......later fubsy.
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Old July 11, 1999, 10:29 AM   #8
SB
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The style is less important than who your instructor is. If you want to learn to street fight, find one that emphasizes street fighting, not aerobics.

Is there a FAQ for this? Because this is yet another question that pops up quite often.
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Old July 12, 1999, 08:36 AM   #9
Skorzeny
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Actually, folks, I just wanted to know what all of you think about the matter. I wasn't looking for recommendations.

I started my training with Tae Kwon Do (older, more combative style, pre-***) some 20 years ago. Then I learned some Judo (Korean-style Judo, very similar to pre-WWII Kodokan-style). Simultaneously, I learned boxing and Muy Thai kickboxing (I also dabbled in various different Ryu's of Karate-Do). For the past few years, I've been primarily training in Aikido (Aikikai-style) and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu/Vale Tudo.

I agree that learning one stylized (Tae Kwon Do) and ritualized (Aikido) system may and probably will hurt one's effectivenss on the street. Certainly learning a number of different styles help, I think, enabling one to be proficient in different elements of fighting such as punching (boxing), kicking (Muy Thai), weapons defense/retention (Jujutsu/Aikido) and ground-fighting (BJJ/Vale Tudo).

On the other hand, I think that one ought to be fully proficient in one art before moving to another. "Cliff notes" knowledge of martial arts actually hurt rather than help.

Lastly, I personally think that if one had to learn one martial art for civilian self-defense, the "best" one is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu/Vale Tudo (the "anything goes" version of BJJ).

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For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Sun Tzu

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Old July 12, 1999, 12:54 PM   #10
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Okay, IMHO, you have to look at the individual school, not the name of the art. I've seen BS that used almost every martial art's name out there to make it look legit. The more popular the art at the time, the closer you have to examine the credentials of the instructors. When Bruce Lee was popular, every school taught Kung Fu; Chuck Norris - Tang Soo Do (or the "Chuck Norris System); Sonny Chiba - Karate; the Olympics made Tae Kwon Do popular; Steven Seagal - Aikido; now the Gracies have made Ju Jitsu popular. Suddenly, you can't swing a dead cat without hitting an Aikido or BJJ school. Where did they all come from? This isn't to say there aren't good schools out there in these styles, just be careful about choosing the "flavor of the month". There's no regulation or standards in this country for what an instructor is, so cavaet emptor.

That being said, back to your question. I don't believe there is a superior martial art out there - they all have strengths and weaknesses. The effectiveness of the art depends mostly on the effectiveness of the individual fighter.

Of course, Chang Moo Kwan Tae Kwon Do and Hapkido works best for me, your results may vary.
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Old July 12, 1999, 04:53 PM   #11
Erich
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Hapkido for me.
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Old July 13, 1999, 09:52 AM   #12
Skorzeny
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Danger Dave:

I agree that the "flavor of the month" syndrome does exist in the martial arts world (Bruce Lee - Jeet Kune Do, Karate-Kid - Karate and Tae Kwon Do, UFC - Jiu-Jitsu and grappling, etc. etc.).

However, I think that putting Bruce Lee (movies), Chuck Norris (point competitions/movies) Steven Seagal (again, movies) and the Gracie family (75 years of no-holds barred fights and consequent refinements) in the same category is out of place.

I agree that BJJ is not the be-all, end-all of martial arts and that it is not the "ultimate" martial art good for all situations, but I tend to believe that it is the most effective one-on-one, unarmed combat system that truly requires (and takes advantage of) superior skill than brute strength (Tae Kwon Do, for example, requires more strength and speed than skill; Aikido isn't really effective even against a minimally trained opponent; Hapkido is, well, a combination of the above two arts - actually of Daito-Ryu Aiki-Jujutsu and Taekyon/Shotokan Karate).

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For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Sun Tzu

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Old July 14, 1999, 03:08 PM   #13
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Skorzeny,

I'm sorry if you thought I intended any disrespect to the Gracies or Brazilian Ju-Jitsu. None was intended, I assure you. I only compared their popularity, and the resultant surge in popular interest in the martial arts they studied. My point was that the Gracies have largely contributed to the current surge in popularity of Ju-jitsu, much like the success of Bruce Lee contributed to the popularity of Kung Fu, etc. Is that not so?

My point was that just because a school says "Brazilian Ju-jitsu" or "The Chuck Norris System" or "Kyokushin-Kai" or even "Chang Moo Kwan" on the door, doesn't mean that the classes are taught by legitimate martial arts instructors. You have to check for yourself. Cavaet emptor, you know.

As to your other comments about the effectiveness/usefulness of TKD, Aikido, and Hapkido, I have to say that, subject to the limitations outlined in the preceding paragraph, you are wrong.

BTW, there are rules for every competition which limit the techniques of the competitors. So, no competition - not even NHB tournaments - translates into an absolute, unquestionable superiority in a fight.



[This message has been edited by Danger Dave (edited July 14, 1999).]
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Old July 14, 1999, 04:06 PM   #14
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Danger Dave:

Your point of Caveat Emptor is well taken. There are now more BJJ and other grappling schools now than there used to be. However, one can reasonably defend against the over-night BJJ schools by checking the lineages from some excellent websites that list all the legitimate BJJ instructors and their lineages.

And, yes, indeed, the popularity of Bruce Lee movies created a huge world-wide "resurgence" of Kung Fu (even though Lee practiced a particular version of Wing Chun and then created his own Jeet Kune Do that are very different from what "lay" people think of as Kung Fu). Note, however, that the popularity derived from movies, i.e. fictional combat.

On the other hand, the Gracies have been involved in real NHB fights for the past 75 years. They popularized their style of Jiu-Jitsu (actually pre-WWII, Kodokan Judo, as practiced by Maeda; vastly different from Nihon Jujutsu, which is more similar to Aikido or Hapkido) through the Ultimate Fighting Championship and other NHB events where they had to deal with actual opponents intent on harming them.

As for the usefulness of Tae Kwon Do, Hapkido and Aikido, I do not deny that they are useful in some circumstances, particularly against those untrained in unarmed combat arts. Here are, however, some problems of why I do not think that they are as effective as, say, BJJ, in actual one-on-one unarmed fight:

1. Tae Kwon Do - In order to get everyone involved in this art and to popularize it as an Olympic sport, TKD has become a sport.
Even at the beginning, it was nothing more than a Koreanized version of Shotokan Karate. The "Korean" emphasis to make it distinct from a Japanese art by adding more emphasis to kicks actually made it more INeffective. High kicks look "cool" in demonstrations and movies, but in a real fight, it makes you unbalanced and vulnerable to a clinch.

I am no stranger to TKD. I studied TKD for over 10 years including several years in ROK itself. I have a Ei-Dan (2nd Degree) black belt that I earned at the World Tae Kwon Do Federation HQ in Seoul.

I find it hilarious now a days when TKD blackbelts try to "chase" me with one foot up. I avoid the first kick, throw a low kick, take them down, and proceed to finish them (either with strikes or with rear chokes when they turtle).

2. Aikido - It is truly a spiritual and beautiful art. Its movements are graceful and pleasing to observe. However, practicing against slow fake punches and kicks, no matter how often one trains, will not prepare one for dealing with actual, unexpected, dynamic attacks by opponents. Since there is no Randori (free-sparring), one does not learn to deal with dynamic movements of the opponent. Besides, most Aikido styles (mainly Aikikai) tell Uke or Tori to "cooperate" with the Nage to make the whole movement smoother. Theoretically, one can eventually become like O-Sensei (Ueshiba Morihei) in being able to move like a butterfly and neutralize any attack from any angle. However, that will take a lifetime devotion to the art (we are looking at 25-30 years here) before one can even begin to have the kind of "sense" to feel the aggression coming.

I also studied Aikido.

3. Hapkido - Hapkido is a bit more utilitarian as it originates from the fusion of Daito-Ryu Aiki-Jujutsu (a highly combative Nihon Jujutsu-Ryu) and Taekyon (supposedly an indigenous Korean style though that is very speculative to anyone who is not a Korean nationalist). Hapkido suffers from two main problems. First, there is no randori utilizing the full range of its techniques. Some schools practice TKD-like sparring, which we all know is pretty useless. Thus, like Aikido, its joint-lock and throw techniques are practiced against static, non-dynamic, in essence "fake," opponents. Secondly, HKD never really achieved a full fusion of the Daito-Ryu techniques (joint-locks and throws) and punches and kicks (TKD). In effect, smooth transition from one from the other is difficult because one relies on suppleness and circularity whereas the other relies on strength/speed and linear attacks. Thus, often HKD practitioners of similar "level" punch and kick worse than TKD folks while their throws and joint-locks are not as smooth as Judo/Aikido artists.

So, what about Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu? Surely, it has its weaknesses, but here are its main strengths:

1. Dynamic training - one can practice full-force in BJJ and not get hurt (seriously anyway). That's the nice thing about chokes (submission or painless unconsciousness) and joint-locks of major joints (elbows and knees) as opposed to those of small joints (fingers and wrists as in Aikido and HKD). Thus, one learns to deal with constant and dynamic movements of the opponent.

2. Constant refinement for street-effectiveness. BJJ does not hold its tradition as being "sacred" ancient secrets. If some techniques work, they are kept. If not, they are discarded.

3. Detractors often point out that NHB competitions are still competitions. I respond thusly to that notion. First, NHB competitions are much more realistic than point-contact competitions or having no competitions at all (static practice only). Much like IDPA being more realistic than IPSC or static target shooting. Second, Gracies have participated in challenge fights (much like the old Japanese Ryu's of 18th and 19th centuries) and other, ahem, unsanctioned events where there are no rules of any kind (except of course, one-on-one, unarmed). They have the videos to prove it (for example, a classic fight on a Rio beach between Rickson Gracie and Hugo Duarte, who naturally hates the Gracies, is also a practitioner of a rival style- Luta Livre or Free Style).

I could go on, but since I've already typed too much, I'll await responses before commenting further. My apologies to everyone for a lengthy post.

Skorzeny

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For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Sun Tzu

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Old July 14, 1999, 04:44 PM   #15
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I'll keep this short...

A) I agree that there is a difference between how BJJ and JKD became popular.

B) The "basement fight" isn't unique to BJJ. This is something that has always gone on, and probably always will (you mention the Ryu's of the 18th & 19th century - I recall the self-proclaimed "Most Dangerous Man Alive" and his war with a neighboring Kung Fu school in Chicago in the 1960's, my instructor has told me it was commonplace to go to any new school and fight the instructor in the 60's and early 70's). Challenge matches between martial arts styles & schools and individual martial artists are as old as martial arts themselves. However, they have fallen out of popularity (PC'ness, I guess - they used to have stick fighting matches in Hawaii - often with fatal results) in the last 50 or so years, and have been replaced by many, many types of tournaments. But, challenge matches are still popular in some regions of the world (e.g. Brazil, the Philipines - at least from what I've heard, probably Russia, etc.), and go on everywhere. Of course, experience is an edge.

1) Yes, TKD has been sporterized. No, I don't like it. Interestingly enough, a lot of the more traditional instructors (Gen. Choi, Nam Suk Lee, etc.) came to the US to get away from that. Just because I can kick high with power, don't think I can't kick low. I've seen that "joust" tactic, too - it scores points, but is worthless.

2) Aikido - yes, it takes a long time. I know at least one effective fighter, though.

3) Hapkido - Don't know. Never seen "pure" Hapkido. My instructor has been trained in Yudo (his instructor was a captain of the Korean national team), TKD, Hapkido, and Kyokushin-Kai karate (from Mas Oyama).

BJJ - can't comment. Never studied it. Got no interest in learning. I'd like to see that video though.

Gotta go! Vacation's calling!

Later!


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Old July 14, 1999, 06:49 PM   #16
many
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dear fellows:calm down a little bit,every one has it's preferences about martial arts as long as many loves M1911 .45 acp and some loves wondernines,and even reaching the new milenium there are people who loves revolvers.
A word here, I thinks there is no ultimate martial art,some lyke the tkd others kung fu,a the new craze the ultimate fighting and gracies style.
Yes the mod are jujitsui the gracie's way,but I think too that the person is more importante than his/her style,I've seen tkd against street fighters (persons who never taught a martial art classes) and the street fighter beat the black belt so badly.
I trained for several years tkd and yes I left the classes cause tkd classes were towards the olimpics and they trained for competition only (I love self defense empty hand),yes the flying kicks are wonderfull to see but impractical in real combat,for that matter I trained some shotokan karate and some aikido.
I think you should read my post SUDEN REACTION in the street you have to be very nasty (bitting,eye poking,troat smashing) to don't be beaten,forget the chokes,high kicks,be simple fast and nasty.
I want to train kempo karate I think is has it's place in martial arts sadly in my town there is no a dojo of kempo.
stay safe,the best form to avoid a confrontation is not to be there,behave yor self,and always run,only fight when there is no place to run and fight dirty and nasty.
many the mexican kid.
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Old July 15, 1999, 04:08 PM   #17
Skorzeny
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By the way, I don't think that BJJ/grappling arts are just a fad.

I think that the practitioners of traditional and striking arts have learned their lessons. Many of these arts are adding these techniques.

For example, Dan Inosanto (head of Jeet Kune Do) is a BJJ purple belt. Chuck Norris (Tang Soo Do) now trains with Machado brothers (BJJ). I've also noticed that several Aikido (American Yoshinkan) schools and other Nihon Jujutsu-derivatives (such as Hwa Rang Do and Hapkido) are adding BJJ techniques to their reportoire. My only problem, of course, is that they often only have "cliff notes" knowledge of BJJ/grappling techniques.

Skorzeny

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For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Sun Tzu

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Old August 1, 1999, 09:33 PM   #18
shiv
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I study Tkd for unarmed hand to hand and kali for knife skills. i find the combo orks for me.
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Old August 2, 1999, 07:37 AM   #19
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I was a bouncer for many ( 10 ) years. I have a black belt in TKD. I have found that cross training in other styles, BJJ, Akido,
and Kenpo work well for me.

I agree that the high kicks are somewhat worthless aginst a trained opponent, however if one has never trained with someone skilled in a kick, or whatever, it is hard to defend aginst it.

As I said, I was a bouncer for a long time.
Some of the funniest fights I ever saw were people attempting to use martial arts techniques in a crowd. If you have not trained for it it's hard to make it work.

Another point. Some TKD schools, and I am sure there are others, do not allow physical
contact during sparring or other drills. If you don't train with contact you will not know how your body will react. I have had my share of injuries in training, but I would rather be hurt there where I can stop than on the street where I cannot.
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Old August 5, 1999, 05:24 AM   #20
tuc22
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Check out Chris Clugston on TRS (Threat Response Systems). He calls it Chamrac Bas his martial art is very effective.
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Old August 16, 1999, 11:34 AM   #21
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For me, a combination of de-escalation, followed by a fast exit of the area has always worked. I imagine however, that in the face of someone determined to do you harm almost any style will be effective. Fear of bodily harm tends to make one move faster than the average Joe would expect. On the other hand, an in-depth knowledge of a versatile close combat system such as akido would probably have advantages. You will be more confident in a confrontation, which could help you talk your way out of the fight, and if it actually comes down to doing ugly things to each other, you'll know some good dirty tricks to play. Before all though, use your Nikes before your fists. Then you don't need an ambulance or a lawyer.
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Old August 23, 1999, 09:45 PM   #22
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I study Wing Chun, Muay Thai, Kali and Escrima at Francis Fong Academy. Just started, I'm trying to pick up a little bit of all of them.
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Old August 24, 1999, 12:25 AM   #23
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I prefer head-butting my opponent, and then kick him while he's down. Hey, works for me. Right Skorz?

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"To die as a warrior means to have crossed swords and either won or lost without any consideration for winning or loosing. There is just not enough time and generally not enough strength in the resolve of any man to do otherwise"-Miyamoto Musashi
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Old August 24, 1999, 12:02 PM   #24
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My suggestion, if you want to be prepared for any street encounter, is to be sure that you are familiar in all ranges of combat: weapon range, punch/kick range, trapping range, standing grappling, and groundfighting.

Sifu Francis Fong's Academy is an excellent choice.

I've studied Aikido since 1991 and while I love the art, it generally takes a long time to make it work comprehensively, due to the ritualized training method. Not to mention that 90% of the "Aikido" instructors around are New Age weirdos that have completely taken the martial aspect out of the art.

Ultimately, check out a bunch of systems and schools, and pick the one you like best and covers the most ranges. If you don't enjoy what you are training, then I think you are wasting your time.

Tim
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Old August 28, 1999, 12:09 AM   #25
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Boxing(combative, not sport) for striking, catch for close in, and El Cuchillo for knives.

All three have a long and proven track record. It doesn't have to be Oriental to work.
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