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Old February 12, 2000, 10:34 AM   #2
Senior Member
Join Date: April 11, 1999
Posts: 1,904
1- There is a difference between martial arts and the sports junk that is passed off as martial arts.

I wouldn't necessarily call them "junk". What makes a martial art an "art" is included emphasis on beauty, spirit, philosophy, etc. Karate can be learned purely as sport or technique, and handguns can be taught with artistic factors.

2- Any martial arts training should include training with weapons. Knives, firearms, baseball bats, police batons, any weapon that you might encounter today.

While such education is certainly a good idea, requiring the inclusion in a particular art may be counter-productive. A given tool has limitations on its use, and its range of use may simply not fit within a given martial art. Handing a sword to a boxer simply doesn't work.

Learning multiple martial arts is more what you're looking for. I've addressed different systems to have access a spectrum of weapons: gun, sword, knife, stick, hand. Depending on the situation and tools needed, I'll switch to a different system.

3- Martials arts training that does not include strength and fitness training is hopelessly limited.

Strength is one thing, fitness is another.

Strength may be irrelevant for some people: regardless of how strong they try to be, some just won't be strong enough (hence the need for equalizing tools). One instructor emphasizes the "Bambi vs. Gozilla" issue: my petite 5' girlfriend simply will never have enough raw strength to fight off a burly 6' rapist...but if she knows certain techniques and throws her total weight against one of his joints, she'll win.

Fitness is obviously necessary. Don't forget that it includes knowing your own abilities and limitations. A shuffling, crippled old man can still drop a thug via a cane if he can employ techniques adequately thru appropriate fitness.

Why do you think Chuck Noris is busy pimping those fitness machines of his?

Because it makes him truckloads of cash. Period.

Most serious martial arts students are also seldom without a set of handgrips of some sort.

...IF that student needs strong hands for his techniques. Strong hands are not particularly special in the techniqes I study.

4- A lot of elements of martial arts are often left out. Do you know how to move silently? Hide effectively? Evade pursuit? These are all important aspects of self defense. If you enemy cannot find you, it is alot harder for them to hurt you.

"The most difficult kata is kata #37: Run Away."

Your comments make me wonder: what do you actually study?
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