martial art vs self defense

drop bear

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This might not be short…



Yeah, you're off base… most of our (physical) tactics are based around pre-emptive striking… so no, I'm not suggesting that if there's an offensive element it's not self defence… in fact, I can't see anything in my post that suggests that.

As far as what Bodhidarma supposedly taught, it was largely a series of exercises to improve the monks health so they could physically endure the meditation sessions. The idea of "to defend against bandits" was a much later addition to the story…



Well, yeah, it needs to be a lot more complex than that… and while martial arts can certainly help in many ways, that isn't the same thing as saying that they're designed for, or even optimised for such usage or application.



That was really entertaining. And that last word is your clue as to what you actually posted, for the record.

As to telling you that isn't martial arts, well, it was an exhibition… it was largely done for show rather than anything that practical… could you tell which were the practical aspects that might have some place, and which were more "crowd pleasers"? In terms of pure percentage, the majority was the latter… so sure, it could easily be classed as martial arts… but that in itself doesn't really mean anything… for one thing, none of it was self defence either… it was more theatrical combatives than anything else…



No, it's not.



First, they're not soldiers… they're a Canadian MMA group doing a demo for the soldiers. Next, that's not on the battlefield, it's in a military camp. Third, this in no way has anything to do with applications of sport (or martial arts) on the battlefield, so has no real relevance to anything you're saying.



That article specifically states that MMA is not really like actual combative usage, you realise… kinda going against your argument.



He used a choke. What's your point? There's no mention of anything other than Cale having been scooped by the US Military to help teach a combatives system… nothing about sports or anything else related. A choke does not equal sports, or MMA, or anything else.



Yeah… that article was rather flawed in a number of senses… it seems to have made the same assumption that MMA=particular techniques (such as arm bars and chokes), therefore when someone utilises such techniques, they're using MMA… uh, nope. It talks about changing and adapting away from a sporting context, which stops it being MMA really, for military usage, and mentions that some soldiers are taking part in sporting contests within the military… that's pretty standard fare, really, and has existed within military groups as long as there's been military groups. It doesn't mean that those sporting systems and approaches are then used in actual battle… although there can be some crossover, it's really not the same thing at all… and isn't part of their training for such usage, in any case. Most commonly, it's to promote aggressive behaviour, competitive ideals, promote fitness, and more. Not because the soldiers are then expected to actually use it… even though there is a chance they might.



Absolutely. Especially as most of what you posted either counters your position or has no connection or relevance.



As I said, sporting events from combative drills and training have existed as long as military units have… in fact, it could be said that all sports are really a derivation of military training in one way or another… promoting certain aspects that would be useful for a warrior or group of warriors. This isn't anything new, nor does it mean that sports are the same thing as found/used in actual combat.



Well, that's more a ceremony than a sport… and isn't really a "battlefield" method either… so, uh… and?



First things first. This might be hard for you to hear, but… Jujutsu is not a sport martial art. Some modern forms are, including BJJ, but to say that Jujutsu is a sport martial art is to show no understanding of Jujutsu. As far as "who knows where one starts and the other stops", well, anyone who actually knows what the particular systems parameters are.

I have no clue what the wiki page on Edith Garrud is about… as it doesn't really address anything that's being discussed.



Wow, that video was funny… no, Bartitsu isn't a "mixed martial art", anymore than countless other systems before it were. It certainly isn't/wasn't "MMA", and nor was what Bruce Lee was doing, for a large number of reasons.

But, I gotta ask, what does that have to do with anything in this thread? It's not really covering the idea of martial arts versus the concept of self defence… it has nothing to do with the "military arts/martial arts" idea… what are you trying to say?



No, it's not. It's a modern (early 20th Century) sport. The "battlefield" claims are frankly unsupportable myths, which run contrary to the demonstrable aspects of the art/system.



I almost don't know where to start with this one… but, really, no. Just… no. Self defence is about getting home safely… not about doing anything "to" anyone… although that could be part of it, it's not actually what it's about… it's not about gaining control either… although I could say that those definitions fit quite perfectly a number of martial arts themselves… and your definition of "traditional martial arts" can be seen as inaccurate as well… none of my systems (very traditional) even consider "sparring", for example…



And? I'm really struggling to see the relevance…

And how is dropping someone on their head (presumably on concrete outside) not a "murder death kill" approach?


Playing semantics much?
 

K-man

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"Martial Arts" on dictionary.com:
noun
1. any of the traditional forms of Oriental self-defense or combat that utilize physical skill and coordination without weapons, as karate, aikido, judo, or kung fu, often practiced as sport.

So it's clear enough?
Not really. It lists four examples only one of which was developed with sport in mind. That of course is judo. Kung fu, I would suggest is rarely practised as sport unless you are lumping 'wushu' with Kung fu. Modern Wushu is for sport but it is not really traditional. Aikido training uses weapons and has virtually zero sport component. The exception is Tomiki Aikido which was not approved of by the founder of Aikido. In fact it was a requirement of the university that any martial art taught there needed a competitive aspect to be approved. Even then it is a different type of competition to what you generally see in martial arts. Finally we come to karate. Okinawan karate is rarely practised as sport, Japanese karate is. To which one are they referring?

What is traditional? Since when were martial arts without weapons? Basic principles of self defence are about not fighting. If you look up 'self defence' you will mostly find it is to do with the legal aspects of defending yourself in court rather than learning how to fight to defend yourself on the street.

How is that clear? :hmm:

Playing semantics much?
No. Chris is just restating what he has been saying ever since I have known him. Martial arts cover such a broad spectrum that you can't make sweeping claims. :)
 

Buka

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There are over one million books published every year. But it's not realistic to try and explain what's in a book. (besides the obvious) Even ones that are similar - are different.

In the United States alone, there are over 233 billion meals consumed in a year. What a "meal" would consist of would be dependent on availability, then choice. Even the very same meal cooked in different homes or restaurants - would be different.

There's 140 million dogs and cats in the United States. They're all pretty much the same.....unless you have one, or are a veterinarian, then they are all somewhat different.

Which brings me to Martial Arts. I think it fits well with the idea of the above three statements. We all do the same thing, yet all of us here do it differently. Even if we are of the same style.

As for self defense - just like Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart said about the threshold test for obscenity "I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description ["hard-core pornography"], and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that."

I don't think there is anyone here, not one single one of us, who doesn't recognize a self defense situation if they are unfortunate enough to find themselves in one.Yet, they are all different.
 

tifire

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Not really. It lists four examples only one of which was developed with sport in mind. That of course is judo. Kung fu, I would suggest is rarely practised as sport unless you are lumping 'wushu' with Kung fu. Modern Wushu is for sport but it is not really traditional. Aikido training uses weapons and has virtually zero sport component. The exception is Tomiki Aikido which was not approved of by the founder of Aikido. In fact it was a requirement of the university that any martial art taught there needed a competitive aspect to be approved. Even then it is a different type of competition to what you generally see in martial arts. Finally we come to karate. Okinawan karate is rarely practised as sport, Japanese karate is. To which one are they referring?

What is traditional? Since when were martial arts without weapons? Basic principles of self defence are about not fighting. If you look up 'self defence' you will mostly find it is to do with the legal aspects of defending yourself in court rather than learning how to fight to defend yourself on the street.

How is that clear? :hmm:

That's what I found on the dictionary.com. The explanation from other dictionaries is similar. It may not have defined martial arts accurately, but it did show the crossover between martial arts and self-defense.
 

K-man

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That's what I found on the dictionary.com. The explanation from other dictionaries is similar. It may not have defined martial arts accurately, but it did show the crossover between martial arts and self-defense.

Defining a martial art is often problematic because the term has so many different meanings to so many different people today.

Drawing the line between what was and was not historically a legitimate fighting system is problematic. In a way it is almost like trying to define "obscenity." Everyone "knows it" when they see it but everyone has their own definition of what "it" is.
The Challenge of Defining A Martial Art

A better definition for me would be ...

The term martial arts refers to all of the various systems of training for combat that have been arranged or systematized. Generally, these different systems or styles are all designed for one purpose: physically defeating opponents and defending against threats.
Martial Arts - Definition and History


And what I am pointing out is that that dictionary is wrong just as the public perception of 'self defence' is wrong. There is a small overlap of self defence and martial art but they are two different concepts.

noun
1.
the act of defending one's person when physically attacked, as by countering blows or overcoming an assailant:
the art of self-defense.
2.
a claim or plea that the use of force or injuring or killing another was necessary in defending one's own person from physical attack:
He shot the man who was trying to stab him and pleaded self-defense at the murder trial.
3.
an act or instance of defending or protecting one's own interests, property, ideas, etc., as by argument or strategy.
Number one is how most people perceive self defence, number three is the reality. Number two is for when it all goes pear shape. ;)


However, it was your statement in your post, "so it's clear enough", that I was querying. Dictionary.com was anything but clear as I attempted to point out.
:asian:
 

drop bear

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A better definition for me would be ...




And what I am pointing out is that that dictionary is wrong just as the public perception of 'self defence' is wrong. There is a small overlap of self defence and martial art but they are two different concepts.


Number one is how most people perceive self defence, number three is the reality. Number two is for when it all goes pear shape. ;)


However, it was your statement in your post, "so it's clear enough", that I was querying. Dictionary.com was anything but clear as I attempted to point out.
:asian:


Never seen a self defence school that does not focus on martial arts though. Rather than learning how to properly install a deadbolt or something.

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Badger1777

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I don't see what any of you are on about when I look it up on dictionary.com. I get just this (search term: martial arts):

any of the traditional forms of Oriental self-defense or combat thatutilize physical skill and coordination without weapons, as karate,aikido, judo, or kung fu, often practiced as sport.


I totally disagree with this definition. First of all, it doesn't have to be oriental, it doesn't exclude weapons, and it is not 'often practiced as sport' although it can be, and some styles are.

Self defence is not necessarily martial arts. Self defence can be picking up the nearest object on blind panic and being attacked, and whacking the attacker round the head in a totally instinctive, autonomous way, while not even realising what you're doing because you're literally functioning as a crazed biological machine. Self defence can be curling up into a ball while someone beats you, as you try to protect your sensitive parts. Self defence can be locking yourself in your car and flooring the accelerator without regard for who is in the way. None of these examples are martial arts, and none are particularly oriental.

Conversely, martial arts, or the 'art of combat', is not necessarily about self defence. I'm sure its not unique to the British military, but I know that the more elite arms of the British military use martial arts in a proactively aggressive way. A better example, if only I could remember the name of the regiment/corp/division, would be the Chinese special forces that actually don't even use firearms on account of them being slow and unreliable. They use a combination of knife skill, acrobatics, and combat techniques to overwhelm a hostile armed enemy. I believe they are attached more to the police than the armed forces.
 

K-man

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Never seen a self defence school that does not focus on martial arts though. Rather than learning how to properly install a deadbolt or something.
I advertise self defence but I do not call myself a self defence school. I know many guys who run self defence classes, but personally, I have never seen a self defence school? I only know of one so called 'school' and consider the principal guy a total wanker. However, if they are promoting themselves as 'self defence schools' I'd hope they are doing a lot of talking during class. I teach self defence as part of my Karate or Krav training but that is not the physical part normally.
:asian:
 

Chris Parker

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"Martial Arts" on dictionary.com:
noun
1. any of the traditional forms of Oriental self-defense or combat that utilize physical skill and coordination without weapons, as karate, aikido, judo, or kung fu, often practiced as sport.

So it's clear enough?

As has been said, no, it's not clear… more importantly, it's not correct or accurate. Let's take another look at the criteria, looking at case studies that show how wrong that is as a definition:

"Traditional" - Krav Maga, "freestyle" Karate, modern (Western) "Jujitsu" (or however they want to spell it… that hurt me to type…), Crazy Monkey Boxing/Defence, Jeet Kune Do, Keysi Fighting Method, R-SULT, MCMAP, and so on.

"Oriental" - Jogo de Pau, Savate, La Boxe Francais, HEMA (in all it's forms…), Fencing, Boxing (Queensbury Rules), Greco-Roman Wrestling, Freestyle Wrestling, Bartitsu, Capoeira, BJJ, many Western forms of "jujitsu" (more hurt…), such as Small Circle Jujitsu, Quantum Jiujitsu, Can-ryu Jujitsu, Miyama Ryu, and so on.

"Self Defence" - uh… no. Gotta say, there aren't any martial arts that I'm familiar with that I would class as actually self defence. Applicable, sure, but only in a very small area of the context.

"without weapons" - oh boy, how long have we got? Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu, Tenshinsho Den Katori Shinto Ryu, Kashima Shinryu, Owari Kan Ryu, Kyudo, Iaido, Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu, Negishi Ryu, Morishige Ryu, Hozoin Ryu Takeda Ha, Toda-ha Buko Ryu, Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage Ryu, Kage Ryu, Shinkage Ryu, Yagyu Shinkage Ryu, Yagyu Shingan Ryu, Heki Ryu, Ogasawara Ryu, Tendo Ryu, Chokugen Ryu, Chikubujima Ryu, Shinto Muso Ryu, Ittatsu Ryu, Ikkatsu Ryu, Isshin Ryu, Shinto Ryu (Kasumi Shinto Ryu), Masaki Ryu, Asayama Ichiden Ryu, Kukishin Ryu, Muso Shinden Ryu, Mugai Ryu, Suio Ryu, Tenshinsho Jigen Ryu, Yakumaru Jigen Ryu, Takenouchi Ryu… and that's just the Japanese systems, and hardly exhaustive.

"often practiced as sport" - well, in the above list, none of them. And again, that's hardly exhaustive.

Playing semantics much?

Far from it.

That's what I found on the dictionary.com. The explanation from other dictionaries is similar. It may not have defined martial arts accurately, but it did show the crossover between martial arts and self-defense.

The problem with a dictionary definition is that it's never an expert one… in fact, quite the opposite. It aims to give an easily understood basic explanation to people who don't have any real knowledge of the subject themselves… which can lead to huge generalisations, and much of the accuracy being left behind for the sake of a convenient, albeit rather lacking, glimpse at a topic/concept.

In other words, when you're talking to people who are intimately involved in the subject, dictionary definitions get lost very far behind, and are deeply lacking to base an argument around.

Never seen a self defence school that does not focus on martial arts though. Rather than learning how to properly install a deadbolt or something.

Top tips for safe travel - Lonely Planet

And I've never seen a martial art school that actually focuses on self defence (within the art itself)… but I have seen plenty of self defence schools and systems that are nothing to do with martial arts… in fact, they will go out of their way to express just how removed from martial arts what they present is.

Examples would include R-SULT, Senshido, Geoff Thompson's methods, Jim Wagner's school, and far, far more.
 
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