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Ook!
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PostSubject: The general martial arts thread   Mon Oct 08, 2007 1:56 pm

Well, Agares wanted me to start a new thread on martial arts so here it is.

I think it makes sense to make this a general thread about anything related to martial arts where people can discuss, advise, debate, etc anything to do with it. After all, this is not a martial arts forum! Rolling Eyes Embarassed

Agares wanted some pointers but before I say anything it's important to remember in all cases 'Listen to your teacher!' and not idle 'pub chat' or general chatter on the internet.

I am not a martial arts master. I was brought up around martial arts most of my early life and was also sent to the top Karate School in the world to train for around a year or so when I was 16-18. This does not make me an expert on what is best for people and I can only offer an opinion.

Others may well come along and have completely opposing views. At the end of the day, if you choose a martial art, I repeat 'Listen to your teacher'. OK, now we have that straight, in another thread Agares wrote: -

Agares wrote:
It's not only that I want to be able to defend myself and that I want the inner blanace and stuff, but I also think I'd be quite good at it...I was going to do Gymnastics (I'm kinda flexible!) but I thought it was too girls!

Any tips from you would be much appreciated!

jocolor
You will need to expand on this Agares. Smile Defending yourself can mean learning certain techniques that are effective in certain situations. For many people I have known, defending oneself is more than this as in their minds eye they also want to be a master of martial arts. There is a huge difference between learning tried and tested ways of self-defence in an evening class and being a 6th Dan in <<name a martial art here>>.

The interesting thing from my own perspective is that the most rewarding 'fights' I have ever been in I have not had to lift a finger nor harm the other person. I didn't even need tospeak to them either. As a matter of fact I hardly had to do anything except move a little here and there to prevent being hit and once my 'opponent' realised he wasn't getting anywhere and had second thoughts about getting into a full blown fight, the assailant ran off. This has happened on at least two or three occasions.

Inner balance and stuff - I think you are already well on the way to learning that with what I have read here. Wink Combining spiritual awareness, psychological and emotional discipline and physical training leads to wonderous effects which includes inner balance from bringing every aspect of 'being' into one place. I have only briefly been at one like this on a handful of occasions in my life and it was so wonderful I find it hard to explain, needless to say it was very enlightening.

Anyway, back to you Agares, what exactly do you imagine it is that you want to learn and achieve and why? Based on your answer I will try to point you in a few directions. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Mon Oct 08, 2007 2:27 pm

I don't know what I want to learn....Tae Kwon Doe (or however you spell it!) seems interesting... although I think I would just need to explore a few different regions of the Arts...what type did you practice?

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Mon Oct 08, 2007 2:37 pm

I did Karate (Wado Ryu) and Kendo (armor, swords, etc.).

OK, the reason why I ask you is because there are 'hard' martial arts such as Tae Kwon Do, WuShu, Karate, Ju Jitsu, etc, etc which are very combatative and direct, 'soft' martial arts like Taichi, Hsing Yi and Bagua and other martial arts which are defensive such as Aikido, Judo, etc.

Hard martial arts are well known as they are romantacised by all the chop fuey films.

Soft martial arts are known for their healing abilities but are also known for the immense power a good martial artist can harness (I know... I have been on the receiving end of a 'punch'!! I'll tell you about that later - WOW).

Defensive martial arts such as Aikido where a master can incapacitate an aggressor with just his/her thumb - VERY cool!

People who do these various types or a mixture of the above, tend to have different goals in mind, what they want to achieve, etc. Which is why I asked the question of you. Smile If you want to be Bruce Lee then you choose hard martial arts.

I personally think that if I could do it all again I would have gone down the soft route. Chi(life energy) plays a large part in it, hence Tai Chi Chuan.
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Mon Oct 08, 2007 3:01 pm

I would love to learn the defensive and healing types: I would much rather incapacitate someone with deflection then with hitting them senseless...can you recommend any good teachers in this area??

jocolor

p.s. Thanks for all the help Ook!
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:18 pm

Smile Slow down Agares. Smile

I love the enthusiasm but you need to take a step back as you've decided what type of martial arts you would like to look at but each type has many styles from all over the world to chose from.

Knowing what little I do of your personality I would hazard a guess that one of the Tai Chi styles may suit you for a 'soft' martial art, possibly Tai Chi Chuan or Hsing Yi (a more combatative version of Tai Chi developed by a grea Chinese cammander and warrior many centuries ago). A link to the Tai Chi Union may be a good place to start your investigations. The link is http://www.taichiunion.com/.

Although it is called a 'soft' martial art and is most widely known for it's meditative and healing aspects, as a martial art it is superior imho. I once asked the captain of tha all Japan Karate team what he had been doing after he dropped out of the public eye for a while. His answer in Japanese meant nothing to me so I asked him to demonstrate a fist or attack style as it is usually easy to recognise a martial art from it. He sank his weight slightly and very slowly moved his open palm towards my chest. When he smoothly and slowly touched my chest I was jolted backwards with only my toes barely touching the ground as I flew backwards around 6 or 7 feet before slamming into a wall. When I got my breath back I smiled at him and said 'Oh, we call that Tai Chi!' Laughing Laughing .

For a defensive martial art the choice is simpler imho. Aikido is a Japanese martial art that at it's most basic is fascinating and amazing to watch based on circular motions and techniques that use the opponent against him/herself. At it's best it is breathtakingly efficient. I am a little biased as I saw the top Aikido master demonstrating the art with two assailants with live swords attacking him at lightning speed at the Budokan in Tokyo many years ago. 'Wow' just doesn't describe it enough. A link to the Aikido Association is here >> http://www.aikido-baa.org.uk/baawhats.htm

I hope this helps you a little.
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:58 pm

This has been very helpful Ook, I and I really going to consider it: a close friend of mine from colege knows the basics of Tai Chi and I think she is interested in learning more, so I will talk to her about it and we can look for classes together Smile

Thankyou for all the help Smile

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Tue Oct 09, 2007 12:52 pm

I don't feel I helped very much Tomi but if it has helped you take the first steps on a path then I am very happy.
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Tue Oct 09, 2007 3:58 pm

This was very informative, thank you Ook, and I sincerly mean that!

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 12:52 pm

I have to ask, what makes you think you are too old to start a martial art?
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 1:07 pm

Just because I'm 17, I feel like I might be put in a class of 6 year olds!! Plus I though they they trained people you so they maintained their flexability into adulthood?

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 2:41 pm

Well, to begin with children of that age should be taught in a childrens class and secondly, they do not have the ability to pay attention like a young adult can and they are not mentally, emotionally or physically mature enough to learn arts as effectivelly as a young adult.

As for flexibility, you may not believe it now but I hope you will take my word for it, in your mid to late teens you may feel like you are seizing up a little but in truth you are still growing and developing and you can still practivce and become more flexible with much more ease than someone in their 20's and especially their 30s, 40s, 50s, etc. Now is the right age for you to learn.

Since this is a general martial arts thread, I have plenty of stories I can tell. Do you have any general questions? I might be able to answer them. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 2:51 pm

Stories would be just swell Mr. Ray Smile

I like Martial Arts stories, especially when they're truthful ones!

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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 2:59 pm

OK, not so much a story as much as a fact.

When I was in the Karate School in Japan I trained with the top 30 Karate students in Japan - they were hand picked to join the school. People often used to say that martial arts films were sped up to make the actors look good. Well, the people I trained with were so fast it was unbelievable.

One of them could punch so fast that if he was puching repeatedly and you were watching him from the side all you could see was a blur and it looked like there were 3 or 4 fists moving in piston fashion in the air (a bit like the road runner cartoons).

Another student could kick so fast that all you could see was his foot lift of the ground and then a split second later it would be on the floor again. In between you knew he had just done a round house kick to the head or something! Shocked

The All Japan Kata Champion (forms - they look like choregraphed fighting moves) Was so graceful and fast that she would be able to appear as if she floated across the floor while executing severa l complex attacks and defences but all you saw was this graceful young lady move from one spot to another in just a split second.

A very humbling experience I can assure you. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:10 pm

All 30 students and myself were watching a video of another Karate student doing a demonstration once, I think it was in preparation for the All Japan Karate Championships and they were watching his technique and style to study it for weaknesses I think. Anyway, I was near the front and was open mouthed in shock as I watched tthis guy perform martial arts feats that were absolutely amazing - for me anyway. Embarassed

I went 'WOW!' and looked around and expected to see everyone astounded. I was wrong. They just looked bored and a bit confused by my reaction. I said 'Did you see THAT! Bloody HELL!'. Someone just shrugged and said, 'What are you talking about, all of can do those things, can't you?' Shocked They weren't being funny, they just took it for granted that everyone in that room was superhuman - I think they forgot for a moment that I wasn't like them. Embarassed Laughing Laughing I'd only arrived the week before and certainly wasn't a hand picked champion!
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:13 pm

I would love to see some of these people they sound amazing Smile I love watching very experienced people fight Smile

more...more!...

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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:20 pm

My father was the youngest person to achieve 1st Dan in his generation in Japan - I think he was 17 at the time. Nowadays children can get black belts but it's not the same these days. Anyway, I've heard legends and stories about him when he was young. One that always makes me smile at the sheer 'front' of it (remember, Japan is a very reserved society) is the story of how would like to challenge his own skills at that age by going to every martial arts club he could find and finding their best fighter, challenging them to a fight and then testing himself that way. It's a very 'old Japan' way of doing things but that was what he was like. I don't believe he ever lost either.

Talking about him, I remember when I was around 9 years old I asked him when I would get a black belt. He looked at me very sternly, paused and then said 'If you give me a white belt, does that make me a beginner?'. I said 'No Dad, you are still the Shihan (Grand Master).'. He nodded, swiped me around the back of the head and said 'Good, remember this, your belt is for keeping your trousers up and not worrying about what colour it is!'. Wise words indeed. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:23 pm

What an amazing saying...you do realise that when you do stumble upon one of our group meetings, we will be asking you to relay stories to us: they are so interesting. Is 1st Dan like, uber-amazing?

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:34 pm

Oops, sorry. Didn't mean to assume you would know. Embarassed

1st Dan in Karate is Black Belt. I am happy to relay stories to those that want to hear them but most people would find them not so interesting I'm afraid Tomi. So, I tend not to tell stories like these.

I was talking to Gina about the concept of 'strength' today. Something you may find interesting.

'Strength' is actually a funny concept and I think unless measured purely on the ability to lift something, then I think it is subjective.

Here's an example. Most people assume if you had two people, one female, quiet, slim and small, the other more than twice her weight, male, aggressive, very tall, that if there was an impact that the small person would be crushed. This is due to size and perceived strength. Simple assumption to make don't you think? Well I've seen this scenario and seen the huge man bouce off the small person - it was in Kendo when someone tried to body slam Gina. The armoured bully bounced off her and ended up flat on his back when Gina used a Kendo technique that 'grounded' herand made her practically immovable. It took very little effort on her part. She's done this to me too! She once bounced me out of a Kendo fihting area for getting a bit too close to her during a sparring match! Laughing Laughing Laughing

Another example. Hitting a huge, heavy kick bag. Most people assume that a physically muscular man is going to be able to hit a kick bag with far more strength and damage. I have seen incredibly muscular and physically strong men hit huge kick bags and they will move just a few inches, maybe even get the bag to rock by up to a third of the way (1 or 2 feet in distance) from the impact point with a huge amount of effort. I am not muscular and I am smaller than any of these men. Using science, speed, karate technique, etc. I have been able to make the same large kick bag practically lift off at over 120% (approx 5 to 6 feet from the point of impact) of the height and angle that anyone else could without much effort on my part. Isn't what I did 'stronger' if you look at the end results? But I am not a strong person.

Interesting don't you think? Wink
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:48 pm

Very interesting...do you think Lunarat would mind teaching me that Kendo move?
Razz

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:54 pm

I'm sure she would be happy to Tomi. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:57 pm

Do you think you and Lunarat could possibly drop in on Saturday? We have a CoI meeting and most of the members of the group are really looking forward to meeting you Smile

PM me or reply on this forum!

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 4:05 pm

That's a wonderful invitation however Gina is VERY shy, almost reclusive actually and I'm not very good in groups either to be honest. Embarassed It's very humbling and nice to be invited though and I mean that most sincerely. Smile Thank you.

I have just asked Gina how she does that Kendo move (which I could never do) and she has just said to me 'You just go...' and then she sinks her weight slightly and looks at me like I'm supposed to understand! Rolling Eyes Shocked Laughing And everytime I say to her 'I don't get it' she just says the same thing until I'm on the floor laughing my head off at how I just can't understand!

Ah well, maybe I'm not meant to understand. Rolling Eyes Embarassed Maybe I would have to be 5' 4" with little size five feet to understand *sticks out tongue and then runs and hides*
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 4:09 pm

Oh no, now she's trying to teach me and I'm being body slammed all over the flat! What have you started Tomi!
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Thu Oct 11, 2007 4:53 pm

I would love to see that: and tell Gina that we are all lovely people...except for Sarah...avoid her like the plague!!

She's dead nice really!!

And good lucky with learning the move!!

HIYYYYYYYYYA!!

jocolor
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PostSubject: Re: The general martial arts thread   Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:59 am

What a fascinating thread - could read through these stories for ever.

Blessings

PS - thank you so much for the kind words Tomi ... just wait till I see you tomorrow ... I'll leave it to your imagination there!!!!!!!!!!!!!! lol!

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