the filipino martial arts expert

thekuntawman

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the expert in eskrima and arnis, and really any martial art even karate and judo, does not have the same personality he has 20 years ago.

what i mean by this, is that when you use to think of the arnis expert, you would think of a guy who has very strong hands and arms, he could let you hit him anywhere and he wont show any pain, and his eyes are so fast even when you catch him by suprise you wont get a good hit on him. we use to see a guy who could beat any man or group of men, even if he is a drunkard. people respect this guy because more than many people have seen him fight in a match, and they will testify to other people that he is the real deal". here is a person that, if he wants to he can kill you in seconds if he wished that, or break your bones, cut you up or paralyze you. what happend to this kind of martial arts expert.
 
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thekuntawman

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i will tell you what happend to him.

people become experts too easy and too fast. it is rediculous that someone with 5 years of education in arnis is teaching the art. is the only requirement to being an expert on a fighting art that you know how to do the techniques of that style? does a judo black belt mean that he needs less time as a weapons fighter to understand how to teach other people how to save his own life with a weapon? does a certificate and a few hours with a teacher make you qualified to show to other people what this style is about.

the requirement of a teacher in the art that is most important, is his experience. but experience in what, you might ask, its experience in fighting matches. i know right now, about 30 arnis teachers in sacramento to stockton, and i have only sparred with 6. this number would be higher many years ago, but people today worry about how they are going to look against other teachers, or they never had to spar for the rank they hold so why start now. i train in wrestling and jujitsu for about 3 years now, and i had many matches, and i use to lose all of them, but i dont teach "jujitsu" in my class, and i dont care that there is a purple belt running in my city who can say he tapped out mustafa gatdula. for a teacher to say he is experience enough to teach the fighting art,he needed to have a trail of people behind him how saw him fight, or fought with him themself. when he teaches, he has to teach from his own experience and what he learned and fighured out along the way to the level has today, and this is what means you are experienced. not how many wins do you have, or what titiles do you hold, or what kind of champion are you. sport versus fighting means a lot here.

but the teacher is so quickly made today, and he does not have enough experience to show the student how the techniques work, instead he rely on stories of other teachers, and promises that "with practice you will understand/make it work" (sinawali and flow driling). his reputation is built on how many seminars does he teach, how many video does he have, can he work a crowd and make them go "ooh ahh" when he swings around his stick. the number one reason i get old students of other arnis and eskrima, is when they say "i didnt believe in what i am learning". i got this from 2 people last night, so we warmed up with stick sparring. of course after a few rounds with my boys they are now one of us.

(sorry if i sound like i am bragging)

anyway, the learning of a art works this way: you learn all the teachniques of the art, and while you learn, you learn how to use the techniuqes. then when you graduated from your teacher, or he considers you "advance", you meet with other people for "exchanging" or "playing" which is a word not to many people know about today, which means "spar". your sparring career will last you about 3 to 5 years, maybe more if you want to make your own style. when you saw almost everything there is to see in a match, then you call yourself teacher. and when people meet you, they will see that you deserve to be called that. my granpa use to say that the true teacher of the art should be someone whos sparring/tournament career is over. even though you still fight matches, you should have many years, as a travelling expert, to experiment and sample, learn and exchange, before you can show it to others. it is like a teenager having his own family at 19 or 20 years old.
 
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thekuntawman

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my sister sent me this and i like what she wrote and i will put it on my website.

Schools today seem overly concerned with formalism and quick graduation of ranks. It, being a dilution of traditional martial arts simplicity, has degenerated into an inferior system of arbitrary requirements that distinguish between beginner and advanced levels. They use complex and cloudy rationale and reason to explain such structures, which, most likely, the creator of these systems did not climb themselves. The schools of today are less concerned with what rank was traditionally based upon: knowledge and proficiency in technique and ability to prove oneself in combat.

and

There was a time when the ideal "expert" was a fighting man, regardless of his age, size, style, and level of athleticism. He was a man who could hold his own in combet against any unarmed or armed man, and use his hands, weapon or makeshift weapon. He could face any opponent or number of opponents, and held the ever-present ability to slay or spare his opponents, and those around him knew this. He had the superhuman ability to cause damage, and had almost a martyr's courage and strength to endure and receive such. To call himself an "expert", one would assume the so-called expert is a member of the best of the best, whose eyes have "been-there-done-that", and his present ability and past experience showed it. He was a warrior in every sense of the word. Today's businessman/seminar-circuit lecturer/"expert" does not live up to this definition.
 
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Brian Twitty

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Sir,

I like the way you look at the martial arts and I enjoy your posts. It is refreshing to "meet" people who have some integrity and truly want to keep their art clean and pure. But, I was curious about something in your post. Why would anyone's sparring career only last "3 to 5 years"? Cacoy Canete and Dan Inosanto are both in their 60's and they both still spar on a regular basis. The Dog Brothers still spar and compete and have been doing so for much longer than 3 to 5 years. Perhaps I misunderstood your post?
 
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Stick Dummy

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Kuntawman,


BRAVISIMO!!!!!!!!!!!!


Tried the "Blasts" on tire dummy that you discussed with me a while back.


Whew, that will build you grip and shoulders.
 
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thekuntawman

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Originally posted by Brian Twitty

Sir,

I was curious about something in your post. Why would anyone's sparring career only last "3 to 5 years"? Cacoy Canete and Dan Inosanto are both in their 60's and they both still spar on a regular basis. The Dog Brothers still spar and compete and have been doing so for much longer than 3 to 5 years. Perhaps I misunderstood your post?

hi, thank you, and you didnt misunderstand what i said. the 3 to 5 years i am talking about is how long you should have a fighting career before the guy have enough experience to teach someone else. when i talk about a "career" what i mean is someone whos job it is to spar with other fighters and exchange with them. it is a full time thing, and it takes a few years of dedication to go after this level, and not everyone is cut off to do it. i dont consider a person who spars sometime or in class with his classmates to be a person who is pusuing the martial art as a career. when you are travelling to meet with people every week, and you are making your matches the focus of your training, then you have a career on the right path. maybe i am using the word career wrong, but its the only one i can think of.

a person who wants to be a lawyer will take three to four years of his life, and reject all the money he can make on a job to study law. if you are 35 years old and you want to be a doctor you do the same thing with doctor school. maybe you are only part time and you work at the same time, but your schooling takes all of your time away from the job. after a few years, you are called "doctor" and people will trust you to operate on them, but even though you might have more to learn. but anything less than dedicated schooling for four years is not enough.

the martial art is the same way, and dont let anyone tell you differently. when people think of inosanto and presas, and who can fill his shoes, its hard to come up with a name, because who has been a martial artist teacher all his life like these to men? who went broke while they pursued the martial arts, there are not to many people like that. most people stay to his job, and go to class two or three classes a week or they dont go to class at all, but they go to seminars 5 or 10 times a year, and in a few years they believe that he is equal to the guy who takes two years off to train and travel to pursue his martial arts knowledge.

when i was in the philippines, i met many german and australian martial artist, who will take 1-3 months at a time, to go to the philippines to study. i will see the same people in one town one month, and another town 50 miles away six months later. some of these guys have jobs, or they jump from job to job, and a few go to college, but the art is so important, he takes the summer and christmas to train like its a career change or a college degree he is after.

anyway, study alone is not enough. the one who is after the title of "teacher" in the philippine martial arts has to make it a full time job to train and fight matches so that his title of "teacher" will be an earned one.
 
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thekuntawman

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oops sorry, i changed the subject.

3 years is the smallest number you will fight every week to become a good teacher. just like a boxer will fight amature for 3 years before his trainer will turn him pro, and a lawyer goes to school for 3 years to practice law, the martial needs at least 3 years of building his own experience and reputation to be a respected teacher. and yes you will still spar after that, i compete and i became a black belter in 1985, but it is not my priority now my students are. and with a few years of getting around, you develop a kind of wisdom that classroom training or seminar training, and back yard training cant give you. you should have the skill to prove any technique you teach, and the knowledge to get rid of the ones you cant use. you will lose your nervousness of fighting, and you will develop the kind of fast eyes that can catch your students mistake so you can tell him and show him what he did wrong. the theory (my brother calls it an "analyst) teacher can only talk about technique, when the fighting teacher can show you and prove how effective it is.

to be a young teacher you will need your fighting experience for your respect. old teachers will get respect just because he is old, even if his technique is not good. but especially for a 35-50 year old man, he is expected to be able to back himself up since he is still young, and if he became a teacher to fast, what will he do if a student is too good for his classmates to spar? he will have to do it himself, and at that age it is to late to fix a broken reputation.

thats why i say take at least 3 years to build your knowledge up. if you fight at least 2 tournaments a month, any kind like karate, san shou, tkd, arnis, and then find people to play with, you will learn and develop many things you cant get in a class.

see what you are doing is making your own experience and reputation. this is they Filipino way, to be on your own. how many times did you hear remy presas talk about his teachers, and manong leo, does he talk about his teachers. they dont talk about the teachers matches, only his own. but here in these days in america, we cant stop talking about the teacher. today a guy has credibilty because he is part of jkd/kali, or modern arnis, or whatever group. or they made up the style with only a teaching reputation. you cannot live of your teachers advice and reputations, you have to make your own, and you do it by your matches. what i tell my students, theres going to be a time when i am not there with you, and you are going to have to train yourself and fight by yourself. your teacher can only take you so far, the rest of your training will be up to you if you want to go up to that level, or stay a forever student.
 

Rich Parsons

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Just to put this in words I understand.

It sounds like one should study with an
instructor. The student then would be an
apprentice. This Apprentice would then study until
he obtained a certain set of skills to become
a journeyman (Woman). If this junior Journeyman
would travel practicing his art and honing his
skills. Once (s)he had obtained proficiency of
a certain level then this Senior Journeyman could
then settle down and teach other apprentices and
also study for his/her mastery.

This actually sounds like a good idea to me.

Question?
How does one in modern USA find other 'Journeymen'
to compete against and hone your skills? If you
live in an area where there are limited options?

I understand if you dedicate your life to the art
and are willing to live out of your car then this
could be done.

So, is this a question of the US market not having
the 'right' level of commitment?

Sorry for the rambles and abstract thoughts.

Have fun and train hard

Rich
 
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thekuntawman

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hi rich,
maybe i shouldnt say that you have to quit a job to become a martial arts teacher. but it is important that training the martial arts takes most of your time when your not at work, just like a college clases would be if you wanted a new degree. like i have two students who travel almost 2 hours one way to train, they come almost every weekend, and when they train, its for about 4 hours each weekend. i use to have 2 student swho lives one hour away, and one own his own company (with 3 kids) the other one is a cop, and they only come down one weekend a month, but its for 6 hours of training a day. and then they see each other a couple times a week.

for a working man, he has to make a serious committment to study his art as much as possible, not just if "my schedule allows it", like a dance class or something. but if he wants to be a teacher, not just a black belter at large, he has to make his martial art a full time job. that is why many good martial arts with a good heart will end up with another "USA karate for kids" school because he did not make his mind up to do serious martial arts and struggle to make it happen. a good friend of mine who is a good kenpo man, was afraid to spend the time to build his school slowly and to be broke for a little while, now he has a school full of small children, and most people get a black belt so fast they still dont know the art good. i dont know, its hard to explain it.

anyway, i think the best place to find sparring partners is going to the karate tournaments. any kind of tournament will give you experience and skill, and then you can meet other philippine martial artists. you will met all kinds of people, some who have no job and they teach in a church or high school, some have a gas station job and a small school, some who just "get together" with a small group (this is how i found a most of my friends in california, we used to get together every wedsday and friday for sparring). and then of course when you meet with people who do philippine martial arts you can ask them, hey do you spar with stick fighting? lets hook up! and then you met their friends, and their classmets, and before you know it you have a lot of people to train with.

whenever i travel i will look in the phone book to find the teachers in my area, in the last 5years its been hard to find people who will spar especially in california, but at least we might show each other some of our favorite techniques. but to meet with other people and cross sticks, its the best thing you can do to "see the world", not just hop from seminar to seminar.

one of my good friends, whose name is guy kinanahan, told me the best place to find people and spar with them is in cacoy canete's seminars because he makes everyone spar, and only people who like to fight will go to his seminars. i hate seminars, but i will go to the next ones i find.

there is a website, and i will find it for you, its called full contact hawaii, they have a sparring partner list. maybe you can find that.

and if you get around a lot, a good way is to stick with tradition. a respectful young teacher, like me >), will introduce yourself to the older teachers in a area when you arrive there. that is to show your respect, and its best to bring a gift or a letter to introduce yourself (before you get there). that will make the person like you, and then you can ask the old man if he has students you can play with (challenge). at least this way there is no bad feelings when you ask someone to spar.

oh, yeah and one more thing. if you are at the expert level, you should never ask a student to spar. you ask the instructor to spar if he is young, or ask him if he has expert level or advance level people you can spar with. if a student visit you, never ask him into the classroom to spar, unless its okay with his instructor and you know it. thats just to show respect to the instructor that you are not going to "ambush" his student. and never invite an old man who can be your father, to spar. that is very disrespectful. and if he invites you, then dont try to beat him. (unless he is really kicking your ***!):D
 

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Originally posted by thekuntawman

hi rich,
maybe i shouldnt say that you have to quit a job to become a martial arts teacher. but it is important that training the martial arts takes most of your time when your not at work, just like a college clases would be if you wanted a new degree. like i have two students who travel almost 2 hours one way to train, they come almost every weekend, and when they train, its for about 4 hours each weekend. i use to have 2 student swho lives one hour away, and one own his own company (with 3 kids) the other one is a cop, and they only come down one weekend a month, but its for 6 hours of training a day. and then they see each other a couple times a week.
. . .:D

Hi thekuntawman,

Thank for the reply.

Ok, I would have to agree with the commitment thing. It makes a lot of sense. I teach Sunday
nights for 2.5 to 3 hours and on Wednesday for
2 hours and then I take a class on Tuesday for an
hour or so and ten I train with friends and
private lessons through the week. :D

Other than work, it were I spend most of my time.

I am going to address the other paragraphs on the next posts. :)

Thanks
Rich
 

Rich Parsons

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Originally posted by thekuntawman

hi rich,
. . .
anyway, i think the best place to find sparring partners is going to the karate tournaments. any kind of tournament will give you experience and skill, and then you can meet other philippine martial artists. you will met all kinds of people, some who have no job and they teach in a church or high school, some have a gas station job and a small school, some who just "get together" with a small group (this is how i found a most of my friends in california, we used to get together every wedsday and friday for sparring). and then of course when you meet with people who do philippine martial arts you can ask them, hey do you spar with stick fighting? lets hook up! and then you met their friends, and their classmets, and before you know it you have a lot of people to train with.
. . .
:D

Hi thekuntawman,

Ok I see what you mean about going to other type of sparring for the action and hooking up with others there.

Good Idea

Rich
 

Rich Parsons

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Originally posted by thekuntawman

hi rich,
. . .
there is a website, and i will find it for you, its called full contact hawaii, they have a sparring partner list. maybe you can find that.

Thanks man I would like that web site.

Originally posted by thekuntawman

hi rich,
. . .
and if you get around a lot, a good way is to stick with tradition. a respectful young teacher, like me >), will introduce yourself to the older teachers in a area when you arrive there. that is to show your respect, and its best to bring a gift or a letter to introduce yourself (before you get there). that will make the person like you, and then you can ask the old man if he has students you can play with (challenge). at least this way there is no bad feelings when you ask someone to spar.

oh, yeah and one more thing. if you are at the expert level, you should never ask a student to spar. you ask the instructor to spar if he is young, or ask him if he has expert level or advance level people you can spar with. if a student visit you, never ask him into the classroom to spar, unless its okay with his instructor and you know it. thats just to show respect to the instructor that you are not going to "ambush" his student. and never invite an old man who can be your father, to spar. that is very disrespectful. and if he invites you, then dont try to beat him. (unless he is really kicking your ***!):D

This sounds like great advice. I have been through
something like this before. :D


and never invite an old man who can be your father, to spar. that is very disrespectful. and if he invites you, then dont try to beat him. (unless he is really kicking your ***!)


This happens to me every Tuesday :cool: .
I look forward to that time every week.

Rich
 

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