A very intriging question

terryl965

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Well I was ask today in a general decussion is what we teach as in western Martial arts really consider martial arts anymore. I stopped and ask what do you mean and he replyed well see all I have seen in the last twenty years in alot of school is fitness and tournaments. The tournaments want light contact and the fitness people really never want to learn proper techniques. The sport has grown so much that ever MMA has so many rules that they make sure that nobody even get hurt that much anymore. All I could do was agree with him, too many school believe no bruise everything light contact and by all means no blood ever. People do not like to be seen with the bruise we once was so proud to have from the niight before when sparring. Sop many people look at Martial Arts as a form of entertainment and not self defense like it once was. We have become after school program summer camps and tournament bound society, little Johnny needs to be made a winner so no more than 4 to a group so everyone takes home a trophy or medal.

What has really made this happen society, lawyers or just that Martial Arts has become a trophy for all and nothing more.
 

Tez3

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My club fights!
I've just posted up a couple of MMA montages in the MMA section which prove very much you can still get hurt in MMA and it's very much fighting not point sparring, I'd argue too that we don't have that many rules.
I know of a good many clubs here in the UK that fight, TMAs not just MMA. We do have the touch sparring lot but they are probably the minority at the moment.
There's plenty of full contact MT and kickboxing here too. People like Karl Tanswell, Dave Turton and Geoff Thompson keep it real, Gavin Mulholland still has 30 man kumites for gradings.
Plenty of bruising, missing teeth and bust noses here lol!
 
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terryl965

terryl965

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My club fights!
I've just posted up a couple of MMA montages in the MMA section which prove very much you can still get hurt in MMA and it's very much fighting not point sparring, I'd argue too that we don't have that many rules.
I know of a good many clubs here in the UK that fight, TMAs not just MMA. We do have the touch sparring lot but they are probably the minority at the moment.
There's plenty of full contact MT and kickboxing here too. People like Karl Tanswell, Dave Turton and Geoff Thompson keep it real, Gavin Mulholland still has 30 man kumites for gradings.
Plenty of bruising, missing teeth and bust noses here lol!


Ok your MMA does it allow knees and elbows to the back of the head? Dopes it allow knees when the opponet is on a knee? Does it allow any pressure points when you are on the ground? Not trying to be mean here but just because we hit hard in the right areas does not mean full contract. I know I cannot put my knuckles into the small ribcage to get away from the guy on top of me and I also know that I cannot grab the windpipe for a choake. There are so many rules that it is not true contract but a form of sport like boxing.
 
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terryl965

terryl965

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PS Tez I am not trying to start a war with you or anybody else just looking at this really hard this time.
 

14 Kempo

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Well you know a lot of us are teaching martial arts in 'bedroom communities' where people get upset if you tell them there is crime out there, they don't want to hear it. Heck, put a silhouette of a woman being approached by a shadowy character on a flier and there is an outrage.

There is a place for traditional martial arts and there is a place for a toned down version. It was recognized way back when, -jitsu versus -do ... anyway, bills need to be paid and the non-aggressive are the bread and butter. That is not to say that a school can't have say a traditional class where there is a more serious practitioner that likes the bumps and bruises.
 

Ironcrane

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Let me see.....first, I don't think this is just a Western thing. I've only seen a little bit of MA in other countries, and honestly it's isn't always that much better then what I've seen here.
I also think there are many reasons why Martial Arts have been watered down over the years, but I'll just add in two. The commercialisation of Martial Arts of course, but also the general public itself. The mainstream who don't care to educate themselves about what martial Arts is really about, and are afraid of it, because it's to violent, or to difficult, or it's just a for men, etc.
I like someone with first hand experience with a school that started out good, but gradually became lesser to add in what they've seen.
But I also don't think all hope is lost. I've still seen good schools out there, that are really into their art, and are giving it their all. I believe these schools will always be around, and will keep the Martial Arts on par with what it should be.
 

Tez3

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Ok your MMA does it allow knees and elbows to the back of the head? Dopes it allow knees when the opponet is on a knee? Does it allow any pressure points when you are on the ground? Not trying to be mean here but just because we hit hard in the right areas does not mean full contract. I know I cannot put my knuckles into the small ribcage to get away from the guy on top of me and I also know that I cannot grab the windpipe for a choake. There are so many rules that it is not true contract but a form of sport like boxing.


No to the back of the head. . . . side, top and face is fine lol
Yes to knees on a knee
Yes to pressure points
You can use knuckles as you describe
You can use knees and elbows while on floor


You said that MMA had so many rules that hardly anyone got hurt any more, yes there's rules, we don't want fighters permanently injured or killed, it's a sport. (There's an army saying it's only a game until you lose an eye, then it's a sport!) but there's not so many rules! Pride allowed stomps and what we call football kicks to the head when opponent is on the floor as do some other promotions still. I think the American promotions have made more rules than we have. We don't have any governing body to please nor are we licensed.

I know you're not looking for a fight Terry but a robust discussion is fun lol! :ultracool
 

Guardian

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Very interesting discussion for sure. I think it all depends where you go and what you go for. If you go for the sport, then you have sport and the MAs as you have put down here are watered down for safety reasons, if you go for the trophies, then you've chosen that path.

If you go for the self-defense part of it, you have to go and find those places that teach it and strictly it. You might find them hard to find in todays society, but those of us who came up with the bruises and bumps and bones broken, know where they are or who to go to.

In my view, it's what your looking for, that conversation took place with only the sports side or trophy side in mind or maybe the other individual has only been taught those concepts thus, his/her knowledge of the other side is limited or non-existant (just saying, don't know for sure).
 

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Ok your MMA does it allow knees and elbows to the back of the head? Dopes it allow knees when the opponet is on a knee? Does it allow any pressure points when you are on the ground? Not trying to be mean here but just because we hit hard in the right areas does not mean full contract. I know I cannot put my knuckles into the small ribcage to get away from the guy on top of me and I also know that I cannot grab the windpipe for a choake. There are so many rules that it is not true contract but a form of sport like boxing.
Is there any school anywhere that routinely "allows knees and elbows to the back of the head?" I'm very confused. Are you talking about bumps, bruises and somewhat regular scrapes? Or are you talking about fight club? Because you switch back and forth.
 

championmarius

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I think it stems from overt commercialization. And Sheeple. People dont' want self defense, or a martial art. they want something that looks like a martial art. They crave the self approval and false recognition of peers. They need to appear to be involved in self defense or martial arts, without the actual risk of getting hurt.

I can't even blame the instructors that cater to this debasement, they are just providing the service that the Sheeple want. So this is how you get contact free sparring and no touch self defense, and martial arts that turn into glorified aerobics classes.

As long as it maintains the facade of being a martial art, then it continues to collect praise and draw the sheeple to it like moths to a flame.

Yet, there are those who keep the martial in the arts, and they are domonized by the sheeple for being too rough and violent. Yet, these sheep-dogs are the only ones truly capable or going tooth to claw with the wolves and tussling them out of the herd.

These martial artists are not glitzy or even very popular. Demonized and attacked by the media, and the sheeple, they go about their arts, quietly, waiting for the wolves.
 

jks9199

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Twenty or thirty years ago -- even at the height of the ninja/ninja turtle craze -- there really was a fairly small set of people who trained in martial arts. The ones that really stuck around and trained hard were the "nuts" who wanted to train hard.

Today, there are a lot more people who train, and for quite a few of them, training is kind of like a bowling league. It's a social activity, it's "what they do" on Tuesdays and Thursdays, or it's the "sport" their kid does. There's also been a big change and development in the sport side of things, not only MMA, but even in tournaments.

It's neither good nor bad; there are people who are hard core, dedicated traditional martial artists, and there are people who meet the desires of the activity/sport crowd, too. Sometimes, they're in the same school.

You just don't see the "old style" folks as visibly because they're lost in the crowd today, I think.
 

Deaf Smith

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The reason is sort of like this:

"California Supreme Court allows good Samaritans to be sued for nonmedical care"

http://www.latimes.com/features/health/medicine/la-me-good-samaritan19-2008dec19,0,6547898.story

Now it turns out if you do anything to save someone, but it's not actual medical care, and you arn't a trained EMT or above, then you can be sued by the 'victiim'. So no pulling people out of burning cars, or from in front of a bus, or extinguishing a blaze if they are on fire, or...

So in a dojo, while you sign a release, the release is only good in civil court for normal expected accidents and some cases of negligence. It is not good for gross negligence. Only question is, what will a silver toung lawyer say is gross negligence? Busted nose? Broke Jaw? Broke elbow? Back? Death? And we are all sure they will pull up their on 'Dojo' expert to tell why the techniques allowed or the power that was allow just invited the very accident that happend to happen!

Now days, the idea of a person making their own decisions and taking responsiblity for their decisions is considered a rather quaint notion. No we are all 'victims' and must be protected!

Deaf
 
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terryl965

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Is there any school anywhere that routinely "allows knees and elbows to the back of the head?" I'm very confused. Are you talking about bumps, bruises and somewhat regular scrapes? Or are you talking about fight club? Because you switch back and forth.

No I am not switching just playing the evil advocate here. I do not know of any school that allow anything to the back of the head.
 

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No I am not switching just playing the evil advocate here. I do not know of any school that allow anything to the back of the head.

Well then why did you bring it up? From the context of your post, it really looks like you were implying that MMA schools don't do these things but you do.
 

Tez3

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On the point of suing, the courts here would not find for someone who sued another who was injured during a sporting activity or a bout such as boxing or MMA. It's consensual violence. As long as it was within the rules you won't stand a chance of being sued. We have rugby here which is more than a bit like MMA lol, there are countless injuries some very serious leaving people paralysed and some people die from injuries received on the pitch but as long as the rules are kept to of the game there's no grounds for suing.
In a martial arts club, again, as long as it's clear what the rules are and the participants understand them, if they are then injuried there's no grounds for legal action. If the rules aren't adhered to and someone is injured it's more likely to be a criminal case any way. If you consent to fighting or sparring hard and it's kept within the rules of that particular club/school theres no problem. It's why we can have boxing, rugby, football, MMA, kickboxing etc. Interestingly enough this was also brought up when some men were arrested and charged for sado masochistic behavior, not to elaborate too much but they were hurting each other ( the actualitities would make your eyes water!) and they were being charged with GBH and ABH, the judge said however that as it was consensual there was no case to answer. If people chose to hurt each other and be hurt by mutual consent it wasn't a criminal case, this means it's also not a civil offence for which you can sue for damages.
Odd to be lumped tgether with sexual strangeness but that's the law, consensual violence is fine!
 
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terryl965

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Well then why did you bring it up? From the context of your post, it really looks like you were implying that MMA schools don't do these things but you do.

Early on in a post it was stated that they do full contact so I ask was all this allowed. Please go back and read the entire post for the right info. The worst thing in the world of communication is someone not really undersanding what has been said by all parties. Steve here is a tidbit of what yu did not read: I've just posted up a couple of MMA montages in the MMA section which prove very much you can still get hurt in MMA and it's very much fighting not point sparring, I'd argue too that we don't have that many rules.
I know of a good many clubs here in the UK that fight, TMAs not just MMA. We do have the touch sparring lot but they are probably the minority at the moment.
There's plenty of full contact MT and kickboxing here too. People like Karl Tanswell, Dave Turton and Geoff Thompson keep it real, Gavin Mulholland still has 30 man kumites for gradings.
Plenty of bruising, missing teeth and bust noses here lol!


This is when I ask about if they allowed these other things. I hope you have a wonderful day.
 

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It's my opinion that it's a combination of several different things...all these reasons kind of get stirred together in a pot, and it comes out being a big lump of stinky, gooey, cheesy mess.

This is how it happened in my neck of the woods...other's perception of these events may vary:

To me, it hasn't been acceptable in the public view to be a "hardcore" martial artist since the early 80's. When the martial arts were first being brought over to America and the Ed Parker's and Brude Lee's first started opening schools, martial arts was new to Western society...well, fairly new, anyway. It became a new public interest, and everyone started to take a genuine interest in learning how to protect themselves. After that, Hollywood glammed it up and made it something fun to watch, not something effective to practice.

After Hollywood got ahold of the TMA's, the "ninja craze" started, and everyone wanted to sneak around and be a ninja. That didn't last too long before the public decided that it was hokey, and anything that resembled the ninja, i.e. TMA's in general, was equally as hokey.

At some point after this, and I'm not sure where, it became popular for families to enroll in a TMA at the same time....not that this is a bad thing, but many dojo's out there capitilized on this new movement, and started charging deals for families to join at a certain rate, and in return gave substandard instruction, essentially watering down the cirriculum to keep everyone interested....thus, the McDojo was born.

Also, in addition to the famliy movement, many people decided that they could get into shape by getting involved with a TMA. Around here, it seemed that most of these people were getting into the art and were truly interested, but were more caught up in the fitness aspect and not so much the art itself. It was a combination of this and the McDojo that killed the mysticism of the TMA's...around here, anyway.

As far as tournements go, the last great test that I was able to see of different TMA's was the original UFC's...again, this is in my neck of the woods...and referring to the Western public...when the tournements basically didn't have any rules, no weight classes, no time limits...it was just a contest of martial artist vs. martial artist. It wasn't pretty, and sure, the tournement seemed to be in favor of the Gracies, but the point was that there were no rules holding back the fighters.

What I also see happening, I'm afraid, is MMA heading in the same direction. The over-commercialization of the fights, thanks to the current UFC, and the big name sponsers like Tap Out, we're starting to see a huge increase in "MMA fanboys". Now, again, this is what I'm seeing in my area, and in the United States in general.

Now, I love MMA...so don't confuse what I'm saying as bashing on it, by any means...it's actually quite the contrary. I don't want to see anything sputter and die out, be it TMA's or MMA. But, the way I see it, commercialization is what kills these things, much the same as bands get overplayed on the radio.

And once things start getting over commercialized, they become watered down.

Another aspect to look at this from is that there are so many people out there now that will sue anybody for anything, and it makes even the most traditional instructor think twice about using the same cirriculum that was used when people were dedicated enough to the art to accept the injuries that came with it. Now, people often see dollar signs when anything happens at practice, even though they basically accept the fact that they may be injured simply by being involved in the martial art. Kind of the same thing as football players need to accept that the risk of injury is there before they step foot on the field.

Now, this is just how I see it. As I said, opinions may vary...but that's pretty much how things have gone down around here where I live.
 

Daniel Sullivan

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Twenty or thirty years ago -- even at the height of the ninja/ninja turtle craze -- there really was a fairly small set of people who trained in martial arts. The ones that really stuck around and trained hard were the "nuts" who wanted to train hard.

Today, there are a lot more people who train, and for quite a few of them, training is kind of like a bowling league. It's a social activity, it's "what they do" on Tuesdays and Thursdays, or it's the "sport" their kid does. There's also been a big change and development in the sport side of things, not only MMA, but even in tournaments.

It's neither good nor bad; there are people who are hard core, dedicated traditional martial artists, and there are people who meet the desires of the activity/sport crowd, too. Sometimes, they're in the same school.

You just don't see the "old style" folks as visibly because they're lost in the crowd today, I think.
This post really hits the nail on the head. Particularly the last sentence. Unfortunately, the crowd is who most of the schools and certainly the WTF are concerned with, as the crowd represends wealth.

Daniel
 

Ninebird8

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Over the last 32 years, as the society has become more litigious and softer, I believe there has been a decline in the way true martial arts has been taught. I personally have experienced it and in all three schools I have trained in and ranked, people being taught today look for far less than what we were taught. One of the major complaints against kung fu today is the enormous length of time it takes to become somewhat decent at it if one wants to learn the old way. With my Shaolin master, I endured so much brutal training, that even today if someone hits me in the chest to groin area, I just look at them and smile, and I am a small man. The problem today is the lack of attention span and willingness to achieve the highest common denominator. Back 30 years ago, our parents and teachers did not care if we liked them, we were to learn, strive, and achieve to the best of our abilities. Today, I am sad to say, there is no personal responsibility or motivation, which should come from within. In a society where schools suspend someone if they are attacked by 3 people and defend themselves, or the parents fined if their child actually stands up for themselves, what is one to expect in the martial arts? If I put any one of my students through today what I went through, I would be sued, shot, ostracized, or committed to a mental institution!!

When I formally open a school next year, I will have to divide it into two distinct formats: the commercial version to teach those who want to train to be seen and the real version, with a waiver, for true training. As far as fighting, in all three schools, we were required to fight our style without padding. In our Shaolin school, it was full contact Snake style vs. full contact Mantis style, and all was legal except for organs, senses like eyes, and dim mak strikes, though you could go to the point. In Ying Jow in NYC, it was full grab and lock back in the day but today is generally watered down, except for specific schools like my brother's Ying Jow school in Atlanta. In Houston, my teacher started out being this way but over the years left it up to the seniors on how hard to do the white crane and long fist. I do know our push hands, both moving and stationary, were very controlled but still incorporated alot of fa jing, rooting, and sinking.

Frankly, it is partly society but the true ONUS of this failure to relay the true fighting arts that our teachers gave us over the last 30-40 years, is on OUR generation! We let it slip, we did not teach what we truly knew. That is why today MMA and UFC are so popular and why great art like Krav Magda are prevalent. They are quick to learn, quick to fight, and quick to see where one is! My art takes time, and done properly the old way, will produce a pretty decent fighter in 3-5 years....but no one is willing to put in the time and take event that relatively short time. When I showed a eagle claw student of a classmate's of mine recently how to use fa jing and waist to really pull with a yin/yang eagle lock to the floor while jarring the shoulder severely, both my classmate and his student professed surprise, while my master sat at the other side of the room and grinned. Brothers and sisters, the true martial arts lie with those of us in it for the last 25-40 years....it is up to us to find a way to pass on, through true app of technique, etc. to keep it alive. It is, after all, a survival and war art!! As two of my masters once told me,separately, " I can show you all the techniques and all the footwork, but the only true way to learn how to fight is to fight!! Only way to make technique natural, reactive, and effective. One must get beat first, to learn how to protect oneself and handle the pressure of survival!" I still agree with this premise.
 

Tez3

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MMA quick to learn? No, I'm afraid it isn't. Most people I know who do MMA have been training for years, they have BBs in TMA as well as being MMA fighters. Krav Maga needs to be taught quickly as it's for defence not art as such. I know of MMA fighters who've also spent a long time learning CMA btw.
 

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