Chinese and Southeast Asian Martial Arts

Gung Fu Man

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I practice both Chinese and Southeast Asian martial arts. Does any one have any knowledge as to the influence of Chinese martial arts on S.E. Asian arts such as Silat, Muay Thai and Kali- Escrima- Arnis. Some say that it all comes from China. I have always wondered if this is true or did people in different places just discover the same things on their own. Any help on this will be greatly appreciated.
 

Blindside

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I don't believe that there is any one source for martial arts, figuring out how to fight is a very natural thing, which isn't to say that you won't get cultural influence on a region that will shape its appearance. Some obvious links for China would be the presence of Kuntao in its various forms across the Malay archipelago. But I don't think anyone has a definate origin for Muay Thai, and if we look at Moro armors they look suspiciously like the plate and mail armors you see in India. These regions were subject to multiple waves of colonization and all of them play an influence.
 
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Gung Fu Man

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I don't believe that there is any one source for martial arts, figuring out how to fight is a very natural thing, which isn't to say that you won't get cultural influence on a region that will shape its appearance. Some obvious links for China would be the presence of Kuntao in its various forms across the Malay archipelago. But I don't think anyone has a definate origin for Muay Thai, and if we look at Moro armors they look suspiciously like the plate and mail armors you see in India. These regions were subject to multiple waves of colonization and all of them play an influence.
Great answer. Thanks for taking the time to help me with this.
 

clfsean

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I practice both Chinese and Southeast Asian martial arts. Does any one have any knowledge as to the influence of Chinese martial arts on S.E. Asian arts such as Silat, Muay Thai and Kali- Escrima- Arnis. Some say that it all comes from China. I have always wondered if this is true or did people in different places just discover the same things on their own. Any help on this will be greatly appreciated.

Blindside kinda hit it, but yeah... Indo arts have definitely been touched by Chinese for their Kuntao. I have friends working it now & it's not far off from Hakka arts, but decidedly with an Indo twist. I think that is what worked its way to the Philipines more so than CMAs directly.

Muay Thai ... Couldn't even speculate and sound like I was trying to tell a GOOD lie ...
 

zzj

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Blindside kinda hit it, but yeah... Indo arts have definitely been touched by Chinese for their Kuntao. I have friends working it now & it's not far off from Hakka arts, but decidedly with an Indo twist. I think that is what worked its way to the Philipines more so than CMAs directly.

Muay Thai ... Couldn't even speculate and sound like I was trying to tell a GOOD lie ...

I agree, however, the degree of influence varies as much as different South East Asian Styles vary from each other. Kun Tao for example is very much influenced by southern Chinese Styles, even the name 'Kun Tao' is Southern Chinese Dialect in origin. Various Silat styles, Escrima, Muay Thai etc are very diverse and martial arts with probably many influences and are the result of hundreds if not thousands of years of cross pollination and evolution, I wouldn't agree with a sweeping generalization that these MA's 'came from China'.
 
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Gung Fu Man

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I guess it's like Okinawan Karate. They already had an art called Te. They combined it with the forms and techniques that they learned from the Chinese and called it Karate.
 

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