Do BETTER martial artists train ONE art or MANY arts?

Jenna

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To become a better martial artist do you train SEVERAL arts simultaneously (or change arts over the course of your MA lifespan) or do you train ONE art to the exclusion of all others? Thank you. Jx
 

tshadowchaser

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I think you are going to get mixed answers on this question.
Many will say that to perfect your art you stay within your original art. Others are going to say that you should cross train at some point to learn things that are not necessarily covered in you chosen art.
If your first art dose not meet the needs you have or is not what you wanted to learn then change and learn a new one. If your happy with the first art then you need to stay with it until you master it.
As far as studying many or several at the same time, I do not recommend this until you have a firm grasp of the first one.
 

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To become a better martial artist do you train SEVERAL arts simultaneously (or change arts over the course of your MA lifespan) or do you train ONE art to the exclusion of all others? Thank you. Jx

Hi Jenna! Welcome back! :) I suppose it'll come down to the individual who's training, but for me, I'm a big advocate of cross training. For me, I feel that having a base in 1 art first, is a good idea. Personally, I love training. I love to learn. That said, if I can learn from another art, to make myself better, I'm all for it! :)
 

Tony Dismukes

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To become a better martial artist do you train SEVERAL arts simultaneously (or change arts over the course of your MA lifespan) or do you train ONE art to the exclusion of all others? Thank you. Jx

Yes.

Less snarkily: there are great martial artists who have trained in only one art. There are great martial artists who have trained in many arts. What counts is the training. If you put in long hours of consistent, high-quality training, you will get good.
 

Matt Bryers

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I love what Tony said!

I think that once you devote enough time to a certain martial arts, you start developing your own unique "style" and way of fighting. Sometimes you branch out of your own martial arts to pursue others that may fill in a gap of your current MA.

Basically the Jeet Kune Do Concept.
 

Shai Hulud

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Hello, Jenna. :)

I think it'd depend on what your definition of "better" is. Are we looking at form? Personal development and code of conduct? Or combat proficiency in the streets?

I personally support cross training to fill in plugs in your primary art of choice. Where I come from, martial society has welded several different styles into a loose hybrid system (Systema), and has added heavily to Japanese Judo to come up with something that closely resembles modern MMA (Sambo).
 
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Jenna

Jenna

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Hello, Jenna. :)

I think it'd depend on what your definition of "better" is. Are we looking at form? Personal development and code of conduct? Or combat proficiency in the streets?

I personally support cross training to fill in plugs in your primary art of choice. Where I come from, martial society has welded several different styles into a loose hybrid system (Systema), and has added heavily to Japanese Judo to come up with something that closely resembles modern MMA (Sambo).
Hello back to you my friend :) I would be interested to know what is your (or any one elses) definition of a better martial artist.. and then by that definition in order to become that better martial artist why do you think is it best to train in the one system solely or many systems? It concerns gains and losses taking one path over the other I think, yes? Jx
 

Shai Hulud

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Hello back to you my friend :) I would be interested to know what is your (or any one elses) definition of a better martial artist.. and then by that definition in order to become that better martial artist why do you think is it best to train in the one system solely or many systems? It concerns gains and losses taking one path over the other I think, yes? Jx
For me it'd be efficient and street-smart combat proficiency with a Stoic attitude toward the self. I imagine the gentleman/woman citizen who's confident enough not to posture, analytic but not callous, and with a genuine concern for his/her surroundings and the immediate community. He'd/she'd be calm and controlled, but would always diligently practice because the time it will be needed is hidden, so readiness and the resolve to take immediate action and do what is necessary is of supreme importance.

That's just my take on what an ideal martial artist would be, though I admit I may have been reading too much Kropotkin.:happy:

Yours, friend?
 

Xue Sheng

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To become a better martial artist do you train SEVERAL arts simultaneously (or change arts over the course of your MA lifespan) or do you train ONE art to the exclusion of all others? Thank you. Jx

There is no difference; Several arts at once, several arts over a period of years, one art..... all can make a good martial artist. It depends on what the martial artist is after, how they define a "better marital artist" and how much time they want to dedicate.
 

Mephisto

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I'd say do both. In my case I've been in one art for nearly 10 years and sampled other arts along the way, but maintained the same base art. Exposure to other systems and ways of thinking has strengthened my understanding of my core system. I advocate training with as many different people as you can to see all the possibilities of application.
 

Tony Dismukes

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Better than who?

This question immediately reminds me of Leslie Fish's thoughts on the matter:

Chorus:
Better than who? (better than who)
The scores aren't in. (the scores aren't in)
Let the gods of evolution say who'll win.
Better at what? (better at what)
In what way? (in what way)
Let the gods of evolution have their say.

I'm better than you at shooting,
You're better than me with a knife.
Who's to say which tool works better when the punks come for your life?
You're better than me at karate,
I'm better than you with a stick.
Do you really want to walk through the slums tonight, let the old gods take their pick?

I'm better at breathing pollution,
You're better at avoiding colds.
Which of us will last the longer in the worst the future holds?
You're better at surviving bug bites,
I'm better at eating junk.
If civilization sinks tomorrow, which of us would be sunk?

I'm better at training horses,
You're better at fixing cars.
Which will be in more demand at the next turn of the stars?
You're better at hunting rabbits,
I'm better at making fire.
Which of those skills can better fulfill what tomorrow might require?

I'm better at growing gardens,
You're better at counting cash.
Which will serve us best tomorrow, the money or the stash?
You're better at working computers,
I'm better at making a song.
Which will put more food on the table if the world goes right or wrong?

(musical interlude)
You're better at playing dominance,
I'm better at making friends.
What works better, whether or not civilization ends?
Nobody knows the future,
Or what skill betters the odds.
So it's best to say we're all born equal and leave the rest to the gods.

Let the gods of evolution have their say
 

Kung Fu Wang

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do you train ONE art to the exclusion of all others?
It depends on your own desire. When you see someone applies a technique such as

- MT flying knee,
- TKD flying side kick,
- Judo leg lift (Uchi Mata),
- Shuai-Chiao leg twist,
- ...

that you don't know how to do it, do you have the desire to learn it?

When Bill Gates saw the Apply Lisa desktop user interface, he said, "I want it.". He then evolve his DOS into MS Window. Without that desire, today we may still type on our keyboard such as

dir *xyz* /s /p, ...
 
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K-man

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To become a better martial artist do you train SEVERAL arts simultaneously (or change arts over the course of your MA lifespan) or do you train ONE art to the exclusion of all others? Thank you. Jx
I'll repost the OP because we are starting to wander.

Like the answer to a lot of questions, it depends. If you really have a great instructor (which is different to believing you have a great instructor) then all you need to know should be available to you in a single MA. The irony is, a really great instructor will probably invite you to explore the other martial arts to expand your understanding.

Unfortunately few of us are in that situation so I would suggest it is of value to most people to cross train once they have a reasonable understanding of their base style. The important thing is to chose an art that complements your training, not one that replicates it.
 

toddfletcher

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I think of all "styles" are aspects of the same mountain. The more I train and the more I meet others who have trained for a long time, the more similarities I see. IMO, all martial arts have the common denominator of the human body. It you want to master the movement of your body such that others cannot harm you, and you can dominate them, then ultimately many of the same conclusions will be reached.

The problem is we live such short lives, that we cannot never fully master the entire mountain. Any as irony would have it, as we invest enough time in various aspects - our age starts to catch up with us. Be REALLY good at a single aspect of the arts, or have a working knowledge of many movements? My guess is the latter would be more versatile and therefore more applicable in more applications, but the truly incredible master of a single movement will be devastating in that focused area. Who is better? hm...
 
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