whats your take on "alive" concepts

Tgace

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I personally havent seen (or dont remember) anybody here saying that trad arts are @#$%. As Paul J. may remember we had a long debate about tactics/h2h etc. and I stated that all this tactical/reality stuff is a structure that can be applied to any art. Its not an issue (IMHO) of reality vs. trad as much as its about if you are training what you currently do in a "realistic" way.

Isnt sneering at "new" ways as wrong as sneering at "old" ones?
 
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rmcrobertson

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I quite liked "Tulisan's," ways of explaining these issues, which seem eminently rational to me.

On other matters, well, first off, if I'd meant to say that everybody who trained in "reality-based," self-defense, or "no-holds barred," competitions was a muscle-bound, stroided jerk, I'd have said pretty much that. I didn't say anything close to it. I said that it was my impression that some of the folks doing such arts were relying on size, aggression, and athletic ability ratheer than anything I'm interested in. I'm quite well aware that there are plenty of guys like Keith Vargo out there, who seem to know a little something about martial arts, cage fighting, and writing.

ALL martial arts are "reality-based." ALL self-defense training is in some sense, "no-holds barred." Question is, how far from which reality are they? Question is, too--aren't there a few problems anybody sees with declaring that, "I do NHB," or, "I do RBSD," and nobody else does? I mean, beyond the fact that it's partly just a marketing strategy, and partly an expression of the way us guys just love them cool abbreviations?

I'd explain what, "tradition," and "aliveness," mean if I knew. But the more I learn, the more I think that this, "tradition," stuff doesn't even begin to describe reality--especially when three-quarters of the time you read about it, it's presented as a straw man for somebody else to attack on the grounds that THEY are real warriors who do the real thing. And I will bet that if we actually went and looked, we would find pretty much the same amount of dead, useless training in so-called, "reality-based," schools as anywhere else. And the same amount of aliveness: I think these discussions are simply replacing one set of frozen, fetishized ideas with another set of frozen, fetishized ideas. We shouldn't be taking these concepts for granted--any of them.

Now I appreciate a "Men In Black," reference as well as the next guy, but if we're gonna talk realism, well, here's real realism: staying alive. For example--and not to pick on Bruce Lee, a genius in many ways--but isn't the truth that, at some level, he was ultimately a failure as a martial artist? he is dead, and it sure seems that his death was directly related to his training practices.

On the other hand, look at Morehei Ueshiba. He appears to have GIVEN UP being a warrior--which for him meant being a bad-*** and a bully, and being a member of a fascist Japanese group that went out and invaded China in 1928--in exhange for something better, and a long happy life. So who's the great martial artist--him or Bruce Lee?

Point is, in other words, you can't ask Elvis. He's dead, and he's dead because at a fundamental level he did not learn what martial arts teach--self-control, for example. It's Rule 1. Don't die, right?

Can't get much more practical and reality-based than that.
 

Cruentus

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Tgace said:
I personally havent seen (or dont remember) anybody here saying that trad arts are @#$%. As Paul J. may remember we had a long debate about tactics/h2h etc. and I stated that all this tactical/reality stuff is a structure that can be applied to any art. Its not an issue (IMHO) of reality vs. trad as much as its about if you are training what you currently do in a "realistic" way.

Isnt sneering at "new" ways as wrong as sneering at "old" ones?

Oh...I don't want to be misunderstood. I am not sneering, just critiquing. The traditional vs. mma thing is something that SBG has brought up many times, and have argued vehemently against "traditional"...so I that's why I brought it up in my critique.

I think that Tactical stuff is cool, and useful. I think the MMA and sport stuff is also very tough, and useful. Traditional is useful too. New or Old...they all have there place. All I really am saying is that there are many roads to a destination. If the destination is proficiency and self defense, there are many roads to get there. The ads that seem to favor SBG, or reality based so and so, or whoever, often tend to miss this point.

:asian:
 

Tgace

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Sorry Paul that last wasnt directed at you....see how you might have thought so. Im in agreement with ya here.

out of that SBG website, this was one of the quotes that I found pretty interesting...

What about knives and multiple opponents . . . .what about them? RUN! I cannot fight two large males who are strong and know even some of what I know. Neither can Randy Couture, Chris Haueter, nor (I've asked him) Rickson Gracie. If someone pulls a knife on me I am doing my best Ben Johnson imitation. I am not going to carry around a clipit and engage him in a knife dual. Bottom line is that if you are staying out of bars, away from alcohol, and "party" people, and living a clean, athletic life. . .its unlikely that you will ever get in a legit streetfight. If you are attacked it will be by a predator. . .you will be out numbered, and or he/they will have a gun and knife. . .and NOTHING, let me repeat, NOTHING anyone could ever teach you, will even the odds in that situation. Your best defense in that situation is awareness, and conditioning. . .to try and find a way out, and RUN. period.
I know the Kali/ Escrima knife drills taught in the JKD Concepts world, etc. So does Burton, so do many others. . .but I am skeptical at best about the application of any of it against someone armed with a real blade and bad intentions. Same with so called "multiple opponent training".
Does that mean we never do it. No, all our Instructors have done a simplified version of it (read tried it against resistance), and are students go through it as well. . but you know what you really learn, you learn you dont ever want to try and fight a blade or several people at once because odds are you'll get a beating. And that's a good lesson to learn!
So why bother with martial arts at all then?
Because, done (correctly), it can make you a better person, a happier person, and teach you lessons that will permeate your entire life. Correctly means athletically. The lessons learned on the mat and in the ring are true lessons of "Gnosis" self knowledge. Its all about self perfection. The real spiritual side to martial arts exists is the athletic aspects of it! Joseph Campbell once stated that the only true "peak spiritual experience" he had ever had was through athletics.
The Straight Blast Gym is in Portland. Between our several locations in the area we have roughly 600 students. Out of those 600, 40% are female. Out of those 600 we have a competition team of about 11 active members that compete in Vale Tudo and Jits. That means 589 of them don't, and have no intention of ever competing. They are here to get in shape, have fun, learn about themselves, who they are and what they can really do. No illusions, no ********, they learn what they can do, and most importantly, what they cant do! Most are middle aged, professional, and go to work everyday. Many are law enforcement. They use it every day on the street.
What we teach works just as good as anything ever could in the street. But, in the end the pursuit of "streetfighting" and "self defense" is a dead end. Think of yourself as an athlete. Train realistically (yes that means like a "sport") and the real spiritual part of all this becomes a reality. Thats the truth!
IMO, the thing many arts fail to tell their students is just how "last ditch" h2h should really be.
 

Flatlander

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Interesting how so many different questions arrive at the same conclusions.
I think, in the end, when all arguments have been made, and understood, everyone is right here. Nobody can argue the value of aliveness in training, but we can banter its definition about for days. Define it how you want, and train vigorously, whatever that means to you. I think everyone that posted on this issue did so quite eloquently.

Thank you for the discussion.

Good topic CFR.
 
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Chrono

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I know I'm a little late here, but can someone tell me what is meant by "alive"?
 

Flatlander

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Resistance in training, movement, flow, elements of realism in spar. Not standing in one place. There's a link to an article on the first post of the thread. You should read it. In fact, you should read the whole thread.
icon7.gif
 

loki09789

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Tulisan said:
The ads that seem to favor SBG, or reality based so and so, or whoever, often tend to miss this point.

:asian:
It is no different than any other martial arts promotion where people emphasize lineage, rank, organizations, ethnic/cultural origins.... just advertising. I think we have all seen inflated claims, mudslinging types of advertising in traditional circles as well. It is not meant to be fair, it is meant to be promotional.

Just like in a position paper or persuasive argument/debate. The only reason to mention the counter position or the alternative is to strengthen your position/thesis.

Honestly, even in the "Reality Based" programs, you will see things looking awefully familiar. Basics being drilled, conditioning being done, partners feeding and responding and some kind of sweaty, grunting 'sparring' application that is free form and unrehearsed. In the worst cases of RB training, form and technique are sacrificed early on to focus on grit and exposure to 'real' resistance early on. BUT in the worst cases of commercial/traditional training you will see technical focus/intricacy/complexity and form 'perfection' being over emphasized and application/intensity being sacrificed.

On the average, when it comes to the physical techniques, trad or RB, the floor training will look reasonably similiar.

I get concerned when traditional practitioners defend their traditional practice based on 'tradition' AND when RB artists reject all trad art practices as archaic or antiquated. Just because that is the way they did it 'back then' is does not mean that it will work exactly the same as today (different body type/size disparities, weapons, culture, mentallity, legal system...) BUT just because it is from "back then" doesn't mean that it has NO value in the current day because the human body only moves so many ways.

"aliveness/reality" is just a new way of saying that people have to train like they expect to fight or they are just fooling themselves. My football analogy was about only preparing one area of an entire range of necessary skills to be prepared for the type of application you expect.

A good example of an art that was reality based/'alive'/tactical is Iaido and Iaido type arts of Kendo/Kenjutsu IMO.

Incorporate some sort of legal prep/orientation, because we live in a far more litigious society than most of the cultures/historical periods that trad arts are linked to, to prepare for the reality of the current day and you have a 'complete' program that covers the mental, physical, moral, tactical and social criteria of preparing students for reality. If self defense is the goal, the current martial arts programs, including some of the RB/Self defense focused schools, will give you some of those skills, but not all of them.
 

hedgehogey

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Addressing various (paraphrased) points made on this thread:

"But what about people who aren't raging roidhead NHB fighters? What about self defense for them, huh?"
You're assuming there's an alternative. There isn't. There is NO SUBSTITUTE for training alive. If it doesn't work for a 220 pound powerlifter it won't work for a 90 pound granny.
Grappling and muay thai training can be modified easily to suit a frailer person, while still giving them real resistance and contact at a level they can take. My mother is a frail, 100 pound, 42 year old woman, but she does BJJ with me.

"Alive training sacrifices good technique too early/sparring immediately leads to bad form"
*What* technique? What use is the technique if it doesn't immediately stand up to real resistance? Throw it away! "Good form" is not a thing in itself. It only works in the context of effective, athletic training. "Good technique is whatever scores" to quote. Without the competitive context, "good technique/form" is a meaningless concept.

"I've seen work with padded suits, definetely very alive."
That is *not* alive. First of all, the padded suits on the market today don't even look remotely human. The heads are like traschans and the eyes like dinner plates.
Second of all, there's a prescripted winner and loser, and it's always the padded man who loses. I've confirmed this by talking with guys who work in the padded suits, and attending two IMPACT graduations. They're not really attacking the women in their classes. It's all contrived.
 

MJS

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hedgehogey said:
Addressing various (paraphrased) points made on this thread:


"I've seen work with padded suits, definetely very alive."
That is *not* alive. First of all, the padded suits on the market today don't even look remotely human. The heads are like traschans and the eyes like dinner plates.
Second of all, there's a prescripted winner and loser, and it's always the padded man who loses. I've confirmed this by talking with guys who work in the padded suits, and attending two IMPACT graduations. They're not really attacking the women in their classes. It's all contrived.

While the padded suits do give that alien look, they do offer much protection. While there seems to be a winner/loser predetermined, I think that the idea that the people who do these programs are trying to get across is to get the defender to be aggressive!! Its not often that you can go all out on a moving, live target. Sure you can hit the heavy bag, but its not a person.

We all have our opinions about this type of training. IMO, it can be beneficial.

Mike
 

kenpo tiger

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hedgehogey said:
Addressing various (paraphrased) points made on this thread:

1) My mother is a frail, 100 pound, 42 year old woman, but she does BJJ with me.

2) They're not really attacking the women in their classes.
Can I tell your mom you think she's frail? Seriously - good for her! BJJ isn't an easy art to do. How long is she training? My younger son is finally going to start training with me and I can't wait to have a partner at home to practice 'alive' techs with.

That is a real problem for us. I realize I took your quote out of context, but I wanted to make the point that we, as women, probably need 'alive' training as much, if not more, that you men do. Who's going to attack someone my size (your mom's size)? Some Neanderthal who thinks we're easy targets. You are all well-brought up gentlemen (I'm making a general assumption here from your posts on the boards) and wouldn't think of hurting a lady, but you have to keep in mind that we need to know what a punch feels like or a choke or being grabbed in a bear hug. Nice isn't going to help in a life and death situation. I've taken shots to the head, face, throat, chest, groin (yes, if you hit hard enough there it hurts us, too!) and probably every limb - and had an assortment of broken bones from my training. I discovered that I'm okay - and able to go back at my attacker and subdue him enough to get away. But that's just me, and I'm lucky the men I train with and have trained with understand that we're friends but I want them to try to hit me. Otherwise, I can practice techs in the air and be Pollyanna and think I'm going through the rest of my life having only been attacked once and it'll never happen again.

As some of you are wont to say - sorry I was babbling.:asian: KT
 

hedgehogey

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kenpo tiger said:
Can I tell your mom you think she's frail? Seriously - good for her! BJJ isn't an easy art to do. How long is she training? My younger son is finally going to start training with me and I can't wait to have a partner at home to practice 'alive' techs with.
About two months, and she comes to every class

That is a real problem for us. I realize I took your quote out of context, but I wanted to make the point that we, as women, probably need 'alive' training as much, if not more, that you men do. Who's going to attack someone my size (your mom's size)? Some Neanderthal who thinks we're easy targets. You are all well-brought up gentlemen (I'm making a general assumption here from your posts on the boards) and wouldn't think of hurting a lady, but you have to keep in mind that we need to know what a punch feels like or a choke or being grabbed in a bear hug. Nice isn't going to help in a life and death situation.
Perfectly summed up.
 
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Hanzo04

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i completely understand the "alive" concept and somewhat except it. it makes perfect sense to practice spontaneously and like a stiff. people do not fight using the one-step or two-step method. but i think the down side of this concept is the actual self-defense practice. it is not evident that they empasize "life" protection, but is more focused on a physically fit "fighter". i dont' like this idea because it does make you come across as a tough guy and you are just a brawler which is why actual martial arts exist - to defend against the street.

matt thorton just irritated me so bad when i read his article. in my opinion he has no ethics and doesn't care what other martial artists think. he is showing cockiness, no discipline, and no humility which martial arts doesn't teach but the exact opposite. he basically calls out everybody who practices "dead" forms and doesn't spar. this includes JKD guys , TKD guys, japanese martialartists everybody. he also speaks on so called "bruce lee wannabes" when he epitimizes that position. this making numerous references to the classic mess, dead forms, and alive training which bruce lee spoke on a lot.

matt then goes on to speak on "titles" and says they are only used for ego, when saying that he just boosted up his own ego! when you speak bad about someone else you're just tryin' to make yourself look better. he says that anybody who calls themself master or sifu or guru is self promoting themselves and are put in a position of supreme authority over their students. and it also gives them an "excuse" not to spar with their students. that is a major generalization. some martial arts teachers are shady and some just don't know any better because their teacher taught them a certain way. but when a godd teacher says he /she shouldn't be sparring whith their students it's for a good reason. I would get my head torn off i really sparred my master. believe me the good masters know there capabilities. these "title" have been passed down from generation to generation for 2 thousand years and it's not gonna stop now. it shows respect to the one who is teaching you regardless of his intentions.

matt should take some notes from a real martial artist and learn humility, honor respect for peers. tradition is a good thing and should not be taken lightly. that's why japanese business still stands today. when transactions go through they bow to each whether it was good or bad. in america what do we do. whe shake hands when something happens right but if it's bad we flip them the bird and now it's bad blood. on top of that we hire cheap labor for 5cents an hour. we love to screw people over instead of paying them teir due.

this why traditon sould stay in america. if it's gone what do we have left but a bunch brawlers who think they're right and everyone is wrong. people need philosophy to understand why things are and not argue about them. that is how war starts. a martial arts war would be disatrous to our community. the government intervenes and what then. traditonal martial artist should learn to practice "alive" and mma should study traditional philosophy of martial arts preferably japanese samurai. they are probably the first reality based martial arts, but their warriors were true to themselves and their way of life. very disciplined people they were. we can all learn from each other if we speak on an intellectual level and not like crazymen. and that goes for both disciplines. peace.
 

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Hanzo04 said:
i completely understand the "alive" concept and somewhat except it. it makes perfect sense to practice spontaneously and like a stiff.
What.

people do not fight using the one-step or two-step method. but i think the down side of this concept is the actual self-defense practice. it is not evident that they empasize "life" protection, but is more focused on a physically fit "fighter".
You're being very vague.

i dont' like this idea because it does make you come across as a tough guy and you are just a brawler
I don't think you could accurately characterize ANYONE from the SBGI as a "brawler".

which is why actual martial arts exist - to defend against the street.
"Defend against" is an unusable concept. Either you can do something or you can't.

matt thorton just irritated me so bad when i read his article. in my opinion he has no ethics and doesn't care what other martial artists think.
Tell you what, I can bring him over and have him debate with you point for point if you want.

he is showing cockiness, no discipline, and no humility which martial arts doesn't teach but the exact opposite.
Actually, martial arts teaches you how to fight. Become a monk if you wanna learn humility.

he basically calls out everybody who practices "dead" forms and doesn't spar. this includes JKD guys , TKD guys, japanese martialartists everybody.
And good for him, too!

he also speaks on so called "bruce lee wannabes" when he epitimizes that position. this making numerous references to the classic mess, dead forms, and alive training which bruce lee spoke on a lot.
There is a big difference between agreeing with Lee's brilliant philosophy and trying to physically imitate him, which is what many JKD people do.

matt then goes on to speak on "titles" and says they are only used for ego, when saying that he just boosted up his own ego!
But he doesn't have a title besides "coach".

when you speak bad about someone else you're just tryin' to make yourself look better. he says that anybody who calls themself master or sifu or guru is self promoting themselves and are put in a position of supreme authority over their students. and it also gives them an "excuse" not to spar with their students. that is a major generalization. some martial arts teachers are shady and some just don't know any better because their teacher taught them a certain way. but when a godd teacher says he /she shouldn't be sparring whith their students it's for a good reason.
That good reason being they know they'd get their *** kicked by a 20 year old greenbelt.

I would get my head torn off i really sparred my master. believe me the good masters know there capabilities.
Depending on your level of indoctrination, you might beat him. Anyway how do you KNOW this? You've never sparred with him! So you don't know what would happen!

these "title" have been passed down from generation to generation for 2 thousand years and it's not gonna stop now. it shows respect to the one who is teaching you regardless of his intentions.
Two thousand? Please provide proof of any martial arts lineage going back that long.

matt should take some notes from a real martial artist and learn humility, honor respect for peers.
Matt Thornton is a bjj black belt. There are less than a hundred people in the united states who can claim that. He does NOTHING but train.

Respect is earned, otherwise it's meaningless.

tradition is a good thing and should not be taken lightly. that's why japanese business still stands today. when transactions go through they bow to each whether it was good or bad.
1: The japanese economy is in the toilet

2: The bubble economy WAS due to the fact that the average japanese worker puts in twice the hours of their american counterpart. It has nothing to do with bowing or calling your seniors sempai.

this why traditon sould stay in america. if it's gone what do we have left but a bunch brawlers who think they're right and everyone is wrong.
God forbid we should become "brawlers". I'm thinking of the monty python episode where the blancmange turns everyone into scotsmen, only instead of scotsmen it's a bunch of tank abbots.

people need philosophy to understand why things are and not argue about them. that is how war starts.
A fighter "needs" some BS hippie psuedo-philosophy like a fish needs a bicycle. If a person is unethical to begin with, no amount of pledges or bowing will change that.

a martial arts war would be disatrous to our community. the government intervenes and what then.
This is a hilarious mental image.

traditonal martial artist should learn to practice "alive" and mma should study traditional philosophy of martial arts preferably japanese samurai.
Ok. Here's some traditional samurai philosophy, from the "go rin no sho" (book of five rings) by miyamoto musashi:

"In my strategy, the training for killing enemies is by way of many contests, fighting for survival, discovering the meaning of life and death, learning the Way of the sword, judging the strength of attacks and understanding the Way of the "edge and ridge" of the sword. "

"What I see on inquiry into other schools is that some are pretentious talkers, and some perform fancy manoeuvres with their hands, even though they may look good to people, there is surely no true heart here at all"
 

pete

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I'm thinking of the monty python episode where the blancmange turns everyone into scotsmen

... but to master your enemy, know your enemy, and to know your enemy you must first know yourself... or else you'll find yourself playing tennis against a french dessert...

pete
 

Flatlander

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Two things:

Hanzo, you said:

he basically calls out everybody who practices "dead" forms and doesn't spar. this includes JKD guys , TKD guys, japanese martialartists everybody.
I don't thinkk you quite grasp JKD training. There are no dead forms at all, and everybody spars.

Hedgehogey, you quoted Musashi:

Ok. Here's some traditional samurai philosophy, from the "go rin no sho" (book of five rings) by miyamoto musashi:
"In my strategy, the training for killing enemies is by way of many contests, fighting for survival, discovering the meaning of life and death, learning the Way of the sword, judging the strength of attacks and understanding the Way of the "edge and ridge" of the sword. "
Though it's nice you are trying to align your philosophies with Musashi to lend credibility to your position, I think Musashi's idea of "training for killing enemies by way of many contests" is very different than what you have in mind. I believe he is referring to putting your life on the line, and fighting, with weapons, many times over in order to gain knowledge. If people die in this practice, and they will, that's OK, I guess they weren't cut out for war.

Don't try to tell me or anyone else that you train this way. Put a knife in your hand sometime, dude. A live one. Find a partner. Train the way Musashi references here. Then you can quote Musashi, and I won't bother you about it.
 

kenpo tiger

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hedgehogey said:
About two months, and she comes to every class


Perfectly summed up.
Thank you. Cheers to your mom from this mom!:asian:
 
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Hanzo04 said:
a martial arts war would be disatrous to our community. the government intervenes and what then.

What, in the name of Zues' butthole, are you talking about???

(Name that actor and movie.)
 
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Hanzo04

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I tried to make a piont and it blew up in my face. I'll just watch and see what happens. peace.
 
O

OC Kid

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I guess that it also has to boil down to why the student wants to take M/A. Little Johnny doesnt have good concentration in his 6th grade class so dad takes him to train in M/A for example. Does he really need that type of training??? It all boils down to the student. Why does He/She want to train.

What do they want to get out of it. Ive had people 55/65 years old starting out in M/A. Do they want to have this kind of training..No.

In my system the student practice basics and Karate/Point fighting until they get green belt (2-3 years) then I start teaching them Thai/ kick boxing techniques along with more street oriented fighting. (not to be confused w/self defense training they get that all along). They also still have to learn forms. They become more and more complexed as they go up in rank. But they still need to learn the forms. I make weapons part of their test requirements, both the usage and self defense against. Not guns but mainly the bow staff and the escrima stick tonfas ect.
 

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