Martial Arts Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Part 2 of 4
16) What are the different Arts, Schools, Styles?
16.1) Aikido 16.2) Baguazhang 16.3) Bushidokan
16.4) Capoeira 16.5) Cha Yon Ryu 16.6) Cuong Nhu
16.7) Daito Ryu Aiki-Jujustu 16.8) Hapkido 16.9) Hwa Rang Do
16.10) Iaido 16.11) Judo 16.12) Jujutsu
16.13) Kajukenbo 16.14) Kali/Escrima/Arnis 16.15) Karate
16.16) Kendo 16.17) Kenjutsu 16.18) Kenpo (Amer.)
16.19) Kempo (Kosho Ryu) 16.20) Kempo (Ryukyu) 16.21) Kobudo
16.22) Krav Maga 16.23) Kyudo
Contents of this section in Part 3 of 4:
16.24) Lua 16.25) MMA/NHB 16.26) Moo Do
16.27) Muay Thai 16.28) Ninjutsu 16.29) Praying Mantis
16.30) ROSS 16.31) SAMBO 16.32) Sanshou
16.33) Savate 16.34) Shogerijutsu 16.35) Shuaijiao
16.36) Silat 16.37) Tae Kwon Do 16.38) Taijiquan
16.39) Wing Chun 16.40) Wushu/Gongfu 16.41) Xingyiquan
16.42) Yoseikan Budo
16) What are the different Arts, Schools and Styles?
This is a question with many, many answers---some could say that there
are as many styles as there are martial artists. So, we'd like to
introduce some Schools and Styles that will give you a basic
familiarity with the world of martial arts. The Arts are listed
Important note: This information is true to the best of the knowledge
of those who wrote the descriptions of the various arts. If your
style has only a small write up or none at all and you have enough
information on it to make a good FAQ entry, write it up in the form
If you have a question about a particular style or its writeup, one
option is to look in the next section for who contributed to the art's
writeup, and send e-mail to them. Otherwise, comment to
Aikido emphasizes evasion and circular/spiral redirection of an
attacker's aggressive force into throws, pins, and immobilizations as
a primary strategy rather than punches and kicks.
Aikido was founded in 1942 by Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969). Prior to
this time, Ueshiba called his art "aikibudo" or "aikinomichi". In
developing aikido, Ueshiba was heavily influenced by Daito Ryu
Aikijujitsu, several styles of Japanese fencing (kenjutsu),
spearfighting (yarijutsu), and by the so- called "new religion":
omotokyo. Largely because of his deep interest in omotokyo, Ueshiba
came to see his aikido as rooted less in techniques for achieving
physical domination over others than in attempting to cultivate a
"spirit of loving protection for all things." The extent to which
Ueshiba's religious and philosophical convictions influenced the
direction of technical developments and changes within the corpus of
aikido techniques is not known, but many aikido practitioners believe
that perfect mastery of aikido would allow one to defend against an
attacker without causing serious or permanent injury.
The primary strategic foundations of aikido are:
(1) moving into a position off the line of attack;
(2) seizing control of the attacker's balance by means of
leverage and timing;
(3) applying a throw, pin, or other sort of immobilization
(such as a wrist/arm lock).
Strikes are not altogether absent from the strategic arsenal of the
aikidoist, but their use is primarily (though not, perhaps,
exclusively) as a means of distraction -- a strike (called "atemi") is
delivered in order to provoke a reaction from the aggressor, thereby
creating a window of opportunity, facilitating the application of a
throw, pin, or other immobilization.
Many aikido schools train (in varying degrees) with weapons. The most
commonly used weapons in aikido are the jo (a staff between 4 or 5
feet in length), the bokken (a wooden sword), and the tanto (a knife,
usually made of wood, for safety). These weapons are used not only to
teach defenses against armed attacks, but also to illustrate
principles of aikido movement, distancing, and timing.
A competitive variant of aikido (Tomiki aikido) holds structured
competitions where opponents attempt to score points by stabbing with
a foam-rubber knife, or by executing aikido techniques in response to
attacks with the knife. Most variants of aikido, however, hold no
competitions, matches, or sparring. Instead, techniques are practiced
in cooperation with a partner who steadily increases the speed, power,
and variety of attacks in accordance with the abilities of the
participants. Participants take turns being attacker and defender,
usually performing pre-arranged attacks and defenses at the lower
levels, gradually working up to full-speed freestyle attacks and
There are several major variants of aikido. The root variant is the
"aikikai", founded by Morihei Ueshiba, and now headed by the founder's
grandson, Moriteru Ueshiba. Several organizations in the United States
are affiliated with the aikikai, including the United States Aikido
Federation, the Aikido Association of America, and Aikido Schools of
Other major variants include:
* the "ki society", founded by Koichi Tohei,
* yoshinkan aikido, founded by Gozo Shioda,
* the kokikai organization, headed by Shuji Maruyama,
* "Tomiki aikido" named after its founder, Kenji Tomiki.
16.2) Baguazhang (Pa Kua Chang)
Baguazhang is one of the three orthodox "internal" styles of Chinese
martial art (the other two being Taijiquan and Xingyiquan).
Translated, Bagua means "Eight Trigram". This refers to the eight
basic principles described in the ancient metaphysical treatise the
Yijing (I-Ching), or "Book of Changes". Bagua is meant to be the
physical manifestation of these eight principles. "Zhang" means "palm"
and designates Baguazhang as a style of martial art which emphasizes
the use of the open hand over the closed fist. Baguazhang as a
martial art is based on the theory of continuously changing in
response to the situation at hand in order to overcome an opponent
with skill rather than brute force.
Origin: Northern China.
Although there are several theories as to the origins of Baguazhang,
recent and exhaustive research by martial scholars in mainland China
concludes without reasonable doubt that the art is the creation of one
individual, Dong Haichuan (or Dong Haiquan). Dong was born in Wen'an
County, Hebei Province about 1813. Dong practiced local martial arts
(which reportedly relied heavily upon the use of openhand palm strikes)
from his youth and gained some notoriety as a skilled practitioner. At
about 40 years of age, Dong left home and travelled southward. At some
point during his travels Dong became a member of the Quanzhen
(Complete Truth) sect of Taoism. The Taoists of this sect practiced a
method of walking in a circle while reciting certain mantras. The
practice was designed to quiet the mind and focus the intent as a
prelude to enlightenment. Dong later combined the circle walking
mechanics with the boxing he had mastered in his youth to create a new
style based on mobility and the ability to apply techniques while in
Dong Haichuan (or Dong Haiquan) originally called his art "Zhuanzhang"
(Turning Palm). In his later years, Dong began to speak of the Art in
conjunction with the Eight Trigrams (Bagua) theory expoused in the
Book Of Changes (Yijing). When Dong began teaching his "Zhuanzhang"
in Beijing, the vast majority of his students were already
accomplished martial artists in their own right. Dong's teachings were
limited to a few "palm changes" executed while walking the circle and
his theory and techniques of combat. His students took Dong's forms
and theories and combined them with their original arts. The result is
that each of Dong's students ended up with quite different
interpretations of the Baguazhang art.
Most of the various styles of Baguazhang found today can be traced
back to one of several of Dong Haichuan's (or Dong Haiquan's) original
students. One of these students was a man called Yin Fu. Yin studied
with Dong longer than any other and was one of the most respected
fighters in the country in his time (he was the personal bodyguard to
the Dowager Empress, the highest prestige position of its kind in the
entire country). Yin Fu was a master of Luohanquan, a Northern Chinese
"external" style of boxing before his long apprenticeship with Dong.
Another top student of Dong was Cheng Tinghua, originally a
master of Shuaijiao (Chinese wrestling). Cheng taught a great number of
students in his lifetime and variations of his style are many. A third
student of Dong which created his own Baguazhang variant was Liang
Zhenpu. Liang was Dong's youngest student and was probably
influenced by other of Dong's older disciples. Although Baguazhang
is a relatively new form of martial art, it became famous throughout
China during its inventor's lifetime, mainly because of its
effectiveness in combat and the high prestige this afforded its
Baguazhang is an art based on evasive footwork and a kind of
"guerilla warfare" strategy applied to personal combat. A Bagua
fighter relies on strategy and skill rather than the direct use of
force against force or brute strength in overcoming an opponent. The
strategy employed is one of constant change in response to the
spontaneous and "live" quality of combat.
Bagua is a very circular art that relies almost entirely on open hand
techniques and full body movement to accomplish its goals. It is also
characterized by its use of spinning movement and extremely evasive
footwork. Many of the techniques in Bagua have analogs in other
Northern Chinese systems;however, Bagua's foot work and body
mechanics allow the practitioner to set up and execute these
techniques while rapidly and smoothly changing movement direction and
orientation. Bagua trains the student to be adaptable and evasive,
two qualities which dramatically decrease the amount of physical power
needed to successfully perform techniques.
The basis of the various styles of Baguazhang is the circle walk
practice. The practitioner "walks the circle" holding various postures
and executing "palm changes" (short patterns of movement or "forms"
which train the body mechanics and methods of generating momentum
which form the basis of the styles' fighting techniques). All styles
have a variation of the "Single Palm Change" which is the most basic
form and is the nucleus of the remaining palm changes found in the
Art. Besides the Single Palm Change, other forms include the "Double
Palm Change" and the "Eight Palm Changes" (also known variously as the
"Eight Mother Palms" or the "Old Eight Palms"). These forms make up
the foundation of the Art. Baguazhang movements have a
characteristic circular nature and there is a great deal of body
spinning, turning and rapid changes in direction. In addition to the
Single, Double and Eight Palm Changes, most but not all styles of
Baguazhang include some variation of the "Sixty-Four Palms." The
Sixty-Four Palms include forms which teach the mechanics and sequence
of the specific techniques included in the style. These forms take the
more general energies developed during the practice of the Palm
Changes and focus them into more exact patterns of movement which are
applied directly to a specific combat technique.
Training usually begins with basic movements designed to train the
fundamental body mechanics associated with the Art. Very often the
student will begin with practicing basic palm changes in place
(stationary practice), or by walking the circle while the upper body
holds various static postures (Xingzhuang). The purpose of these
exercises is to familiarize the beginning student with the feeling of
maintaining correct body alignment and mental focus while in motion.
The student will progress to learning the various palm changes and
related forms. The Sixty-Four Palms or other similar patterns are
usually learned after some level of proficiency has been attained with
the basic circle walk and palm changes. Some styles practice the
Sixty-Four Palms on the circle while other styles practice these forms
in a linear fashion. All of the forms in Baguazhang seek to use the
power of the whole body in every movement, as the power of the whole
will always be much greater than that of isolated parts. The
body-energy cultivated is flexible, resilient and "elastic" in nature.
In addition to the above, most styles of Baguazhang include various
two-person forms and drills as intermediate steps between solo forms
and the practice of combat techniques. Although the techniques of
Baguazhang are many and various, they all adhere to the above mentioned
principles of mobility and skill. Many styles of Baguazhang also
include a variety of weapons, ranging from the more "standard" types
(straight sword, broadsword, spear) to the "exotic." An interesting
difference with other styles of martial arts is that Baguazhang
weapons tend to be "oversized," that is they are much bigger than
standard weapons of the same type (the extra weight increases the
strength and stamina of the user).
Each of Dong Haichuan's (or Dong Haiquan's) students developed their
own "style" of Baguazhang based on their individual backgrounds and
previous martial training. Each style has its own specific forms and
echniques. All of the different styles adhere to the basic principles
of Baguazhang while retaining an individual "flavor" of their own. Most
of the styles in existence today can trace their roots to either The
Yin Fu, Zheng Dinghua, or Liang Zhenpu variations.
Yin Fu styles include a large number of percussive techniques and fast
striking combinations (Yin Fu was said to "fight like a tiger," moving
in swiftly and knocking his opponent to the ground like a tiger
pouncing on prey). The forms include many explosive movements and very
quick and evasive footwork. Variations of the Yin Fu style have been
passed down through his students and their students, including Men
Baozhen, Ma Kui, Gong Baotian, Fu Zhensong, and Lu Shuitian.
Zheng Dinghua styles of Baguazhang include palm changes which are
done in a smooth and flowing manner, with little display of overt
power (Zheng Dinghua's movement was likened to that of a dragon
soaring in the clouds). Popular variants of this style include the Gao
Yisheng system, Dragon style Baguazhang, "Swimming Body" Baguazhang,
the Nine Palace system, Jiang Rongqiao style (probably the
most common form practiced today) and the Sun Ludang style.
The Liang Zhenpu style was popularized by his student Li Ziming
(who was the president of the Beijing Baguazhang Association for
many years and who did much to spread his art worldwide).
Bushidokan is an eclectic art of recent origin, founded by Jim
Harrison in the late 1960's. Harrison has studied Judo and Shorin-Ryu
karate extensively. The Bushidokan Art is a combination of Okinawan
karate, judo, and some JJ, with the primary emphasis on karate. The
karate portion of Bushidokan's training is quite similar to Shotokan -
definitely Okinawan in ancestry. Bushidokan is best suited for those
interested in effective street self-defense, tournament fighting, and
fairly rugged physical conditioning.
Beginning students learn seven basic stances, seven basic strikes (six
linear, one circular), seven basic blocks (one of which is circular)
and seven basic kicks. Many of the self-defenses taught incorporate
techniniques not included in the "basic" seven, thus exposing the
student to a greater variety. These include a number of throws, a few
soft (redirecting) blocks, and several wrist/hand locks. Two basic
self-defense strategies - a direct counter and an indirect counter -
are taught for each type of attack. Sparring is introduced as
students progress, but is always optional, and ranges from "no
contact" to "full contact".
This is a very acrobatic, very energetic Brazilian martial art.
Origin: Angola and Brazil
Capoeira is the common name for the group of African martial arts that
came out of west Africa and were modifed and mixed in Brazil. These
orginal stlyes inculded weapons, grappling and striking as well as
animal forms that became incorpated into different components and sub
styles of the popular art.
In the 1500's, black slaves from Africa were used in Brazil to build
he empire of the sugar cane. These slaves lacked a form of
self-defense, and in a way quite parallel to Karate, they developed a
martial-art with the things they had in hand, namely, sugar cane
knives and 3/4 staffs. Being slaves, they had to disguise the study of
the art, and that is how the dance came into it.
In the early 1800's Capoeira was outlawed in Brazil, especially in its
"home state" of Bahia, where gangs utilized it as their personal
fighting style against police.
Capoeira was born in the "senzalas", the places where the slaves were
kept, and developed in the "quilombos", the places where they used to
run to when they fled from their enslavers.
Capoeira consists of a stylized dance, practiced in a circle called
the "roda", with sound background provided by percussion instruments,
like the "agogo", the "atabaqui", etc. The "Berimbau" is a
percussion instrument that is always used on rodas.
Capoeira relies heavily on kicks and leg sweeps for attacks and dodges
for defenses. Is not uncommon to not be taught any kind of hand
strike of parry, though arm positioning for blocks is taught.
The "ginga" (meaning "swing"_, the footwork of Capoeira, consists in
changing the basic stance (body facing the adversary, front leg flexed
with body weight over it, the other leg strechted back) from the right
leg to the left leg again and again.
Capoeira also puts a heavy emphasis on ground fighting, but not
grappling and locks. Instead, it uses a ground stance (from the basic
stance, you just fall over your leg stretched back, flexing it, and
leaving the front leg stretched ahead), from which you make feints,
dodges, kicks, leg sweeps, acrobatics, etc.
Hand positioning is important but it's used only to block attacks and
ensure balance, though street fighting "capoeiristas" use the hands
When fighting, it is rare to stop in one stance, and in this case, you
just "follow" your opponent with your legs, preventing him from
getting close, or preparing a fast acrobatic move to take advantage
when he attacks. The rest of the time, you just keep changing stances,
feinting, and doing the equivalent of boxing "jabs".
After a through warm-up, standing exercises are done, with emphasis on
the "ginga", the footwork characteristic of the art, and on the basic
kicks: "bencao", a front-stomping kick, "martelo", a roundhouse kick,
"chapa", a side-kick, "meia-lua de frente", a low turning kick, "armada",
a high turning kick, "queixada", an outside-inside crescent kick. Then
walking sequences are done, with the introduction of sommersaults,
backflips and headstands, in couples and individual. Some more
technical training follows, with couples beginning a basic and slow
"jogo", and then the whole class forms and goes for "roda" game for at
least 30 minutes.
Capoeira conditions and develops the muscles, especially the abdominal
Regional: Capoeira in a more artistic, open form, giving more way to
athletic prowess and training. The newer, faster, more popular style
created by mestre Bimba (the guy who was responsible for the legalization
of capoeira and the founder of the first academy). Breakdancing evolved
from this style, and 90% of all breakdancing moves come directly from
capoeira. This is a faster game, less a fight and more of a showing off. Flourishes, high
kicks, and aerial, acrobatic maneuvers are the hallmark
of the regional game, which is usually played to the beat of the berimbau
known as Sao Bento Grande.
Angola: a more closed, harder style that is closest to the original
African systems that came to Brazil. The "traditional" capoeira, the game
is accompanied by a specific beat of the berimbau by the same name. Angola
games are generally slow and low to the ground, and incorporate a lot of trickery, sweeps
and takedowns, and physically grueling movements that
require great strength and balance.
Iuna: Iuna is not really a style of capoeira. Rather, it refers to a
rhythm of the berimbau that is played when somebody dies or when mestres
(masters) play alone. There is no singing when iuna is played, and only
masters are allowed to play during iuna.
16.5) Cha Yon Ryu
Cha Yon Ryu ("Natural Way") is an eclectic, fairly new martial art
founded in 1968 by Kim Soo of Houston, Texas, who remains Director of
the system. Tae Kwon Do contributes kicking techniques, strong stances
and direct, linear strikes and blocks, as does Shotokan Karate. With
the study of movements from Okinawa te (Okinawa), the Cha Yon Ryu
practitioner starts to add techniques with some angularity to his/her
repertoire, and eventually progresses to the fluid, circular movements
of Quanfa Gongfu. Hapkido is the martial art from which are drawn
defenses against chokes, grabs and armed attacks, as well as various
throwing and falling techniques.
Students strive to fulfill The Dojang Hun (Training Hall Oath): Seek
perfection of character, Live the way of truth, Endeavor, Be faithful,
Respect your seniors, and Refrain from violent behavior.
16.6) Cuong Nhu (pronounced "Kung New")
(Contributors: Elizabeth Roman and Robert First -
Cuong Nhu is another eclectic, fairly new martial art, founded in 1965
by Master Ngo Dong in Vietnam. The first US school opened in
Gainesville FL in 1971. Cuong Nhu is an integrated martial art
blending hard aspects ("cuong" in Vietnamese) from Shotokan Karate,
Wing Chun Gongfu, and American Boxing, with influences from the soft
("nhu" in Vietnamese) arts of Judo, Aikido, and Taiji, in addition
to Vovinam, a Vietnamese martial art using both hard and soft
techniques. In keeping with its inclusive nature, Cuong Nhu
instruction extends beyond the traditionally martial to public
speaking, poetry, paintint, and philosophy. There is a strong
emphasis on developing self control, modesty, and a non-defeatist
Beginning students focus on the hard, linear arts, mostly modified
Shotokan Karate techniques and katas. Experienced students add
movements from more advanced softer, circular arts such as Aikido and
Taiji. All levels get some exposure to the entire range of styles.
Training emphasizes moral and philosophical development, and students
discuss the "Code of Ethics" and selections from Cuong Nhu philosophy
in class. As with other styles, belt color indicates rank as certified
by regional testing.
There are approximately 70 Cuong Nhu dojos in the US. For more
information or the location of a school near you, the Cuong Nhu
Oriental Martial Arts Association (CNOMAA) can be reached at (904)
737-7094 or .
16.7) Daito Ryu Aiki-Jujustu
Intro: A prominent sub-style of Jujutsu
Daito-ryu Aiki-Jujutsu is an old Jujutsu style presumably founded my
Minamoto, Yoshimitsu in the eleventh century. Originally, it was only
practised by the highest ranking Samurais in the Takeda family in the
Kai fiefdom in northern Japan.
Feudal overlord Takeda, Shingen died in 1573, and his kinsman Takeda,
Kunitsugu moved to the Aizu fiefdom, where he became Jito - overseer
of the fief. Kunitsugu introduced Daitoryu Aikijujutsu at the Aizu
fiefdom, where the secret fighting art only was taught to the feudal
lords and the highest ranking samurais and ladies in waiting.
The feudal system was broken down after 1868 when the Meiji
restoration begun. Saigo, Tanomo (1829-1905), the heir to Daito-ryu
gave the system to Takeda, Sogaku (1859-1943) and instructed him to
pass it on to future generations. Takeda, Sogaku first used the term
"Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu" in the beginning of the twentieth century and
taught the art of it to many students.
Takeda, Sogaku taught Daito-ryu from the beginning of the twentieth
century until his death in 1943 two of his best known students were
Ueshiba, Morihei, founder of Aikido and Choi, Yong Sul, founder of
Other prominent 20th century Daito-ryu masters include Horikawa, Kodo
(1894-1980); Takuma, Hisa (1895-1979); Hakaru, Mori (1931-), the
current director of the Daitoryu Aikijujutsu Takumakai; Sagawa,
Yukiyoshi (1902-); Takeda, Tokimune (1916-1993), son of Takeda,
Sogaku; Katsuyuki, Kondo (1945-); and Okamoto, Seigo (1925-), who is
often considered the most progressive teacher of Daitoryu Aikijujutsu.
Description and Training:
The way of teaching Daitoryu comes from Takeda, Sogaku's students in
the same manner as the understanding, feeling and character of the
techniques. Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu has four levels of techniques:
Shoden (Lowest), Chuden (advanced), Okuden (highest) and Hiden (secret
The training in Daito-ryu starts with Shoden, where the student learns
ukemi (falling and rolling), taisabaki (moving the body), tesabaki and
ashisabaki (movements of the hands and feet and legs), defense against
grappling, and continues with defense against punches, kicks and
weapons, as for instance short and long staffs (tanbo, jo and chobo)
and knives and swords (tanto and katana).
There are techniques that can be done from standing, sitting or lying
positions. The first transmission scroll Hiden Mokuroku describes the
first 118 jujutsu techniques from the Shoden level.
These are advanced jujutsu techniques with large soft movements as
known from Aikido. The actual aiki training consists of a combination
of these techniques and those from Shoden. At this level of training
it is allowed to use some amount of force, several steps and large
When doing Okuden all movements should be as small as possible.
Breathing, reflexes, circles and timing are used instead of muscles;
the techniques are small and fast, and it is not necessary to hold an
attacker in order to throw him.
The reflexes of the attacker are used against him. He gets a soft
shock, similar to an electric shock activating his reflexes, and it
becomes easy to manipulate the body of the attacker so it is felt as
an extension of one's own.
These are the secret techniques. The real aiki consists always of soft
techniques that only work properly when the whole body and proper
breathing is used. The attacker is touched easily, you are as glued to
him, and the techniques are so small that even experienced budokas
cannot see what is happening. However, the most fascinating part of
Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu is that it is unnecessary to use physical power
for incapacitating the attacker his own force is turned against him.
This Korean art is sometimes confused with Aikido, since the Korean
and Japanese translation of the names is the same.
Hapkido history is the subject of some controversy.
Some sources say that the founder of Hapkido, Choi, Yong Sul was a
houseboy/servant (some even say "the adopted son") of Japanese Daito
Ryu Aikijujutsu GrandMaster Takeda, Sokaku. In Japan, Choi used the
Japanese name Yoshida, Tatsujutsu since all immigrants to Japan took
Japanese names at that time. Choi's Japanese name has also been given
as Asao, Yoshida by some sources. According to this view, Choi
studied under Takeda in Japan from 1913, when he was aged 9, until
Takeda died in 1943. However, Daito Ryu records do not reflect this,
so hard confirmation has not been available. Some claim that Choi's
Daito Ryu training was limited to attending seminars.
Ueshiba, Morihei, the founder of Aikido, was also a student of Takeda
(this is not disputed). Hapkido and Aikido both have significant
similarities to Daito Ryu Aikijujutsu, so it would seem that Hapkido's
link to it is real, regardless of how and where Choi was trained.
Choi returned to Korea after Takeda's death and began studying Korean
arts and teaching Yu Sool or Yawara (other names for jujutsu),
eventually calling his kwan ("school") the Hapki Kwan. Ji, Han Jae,
began studying under Choi and eventually started his own school, where
he taught what he called Hapkido, after the grandmaster's school.
Along the way, Hapkido adopted various techniques from Tang Soo Do,
Tae Kyon, and other Korean kwans (schools).
Korean sources may tend to emphasize the Korean arts lineage of
Hapkido over the Aikijujutsu lineage, with some even omitting the
Aikijujutsu connection. However, as noted above, the connection can
be seen in the techniques.
Ji now calls his system Sin Moo Hapkido. He currently lives and
teaches in California, as does another former Choi student, Myung,
Kwang Sik, who is GrandMaster of the World Hapkido Federation.
Some other Choi Hapkido students are still living. Chang, Chun Il
currently teaches in New York City, and Im, Hyon Soo lives and teaches
in Korea. Both of these men were promoted to 9th dan by Choi. One of
the first Hapkido masters to bring the art to the western culture was
Han, Bong Soo.
In the 1970's and 80's Hapkido was taught as the style of choice to
elite South Korean armed forces units.
Hapkido combines joint locks, pressure points, throws, kicks, and
strikes for practical self-defense. More soft than hard and more
internal than external, but elements of each are included. Emphasizes
circular motion, non-resistive movements, and control of the opponent.
Although Hapkido contains both outfighting and infighting techniques,
the goal in most situations is to get inside for a close-in strike,
lock, or throw. When striking, deriving power from hip rotation is
Varies with organization and instructor. As a general rule, beginners
concentrate on basic strikes and kicks, along with a few joint locks
and throws. Some of the striking and kicking practice is form-like,
that is, with no partner, however, most is done with a partner who is
holding heavy pads that the student strikes and kicks full power.
Advanced students add a few more strikes and kicks as well as many
more throws, locks, and pressure points. There is also some weapons
training for advanced students - primarily belt, kubatan, cane, and
Some schools do forms, some do not. Some do sparring and some do not,
although at the advanced levels, most schools do at least some
sparring. Many Hapkido techniques are unsuitable for use in sparring,
as their use would result in injury, even when protective gear is
used. Thus, sparring typically uses only a limited subset of
There is generally an emphasis on physical conditioning and excercise,
including "ki" exercises.
16.9) Hwa Rang Do
Hwa Rang Do is a comprehensive martial arts system whose training
encompasses unarmed combat, weaponry, internal training and healing
techniques. Translated, Hwa Rang Do means "the way of flowering
For the ancient history of the Hwarang, please refer to the Ancient
Korean History section of .
In March 1942 present day founder of Hwa Rang Do, Dr. Joo Bang Lee and
his brother, Joo Sang Lee was introduced to the Buddhist monk Suahm
Dosa by their father, who was a personal friend of the monk, and they
began their formal training aged 5 & 6.
The brothers lived and trained as the sole students with the monk
mostly in weekends and during school vacations but also trained in
other martial arts when they were unable to train under Suahm Dosa.
Influences include Boxing, Yudo, Komdo, and Tang Soo Do. In addition
the Lee Brothers attained Master level of Dae Dong Ryu Yu Sul (modern
name - Hapkido) from its founder Choi Yong Sool in October 1956.
In April 1960 Dr. Joo Bang Lee created and founded his martial art by
combining Suham Dosa's techniques with the other systems he had
trained. He choose the name Hwa Rang Kwan to describe his system and
this also marked the first time the Hwa Rang was used publicly in
connection with unarmed Korean martial arts. There is no way of
knowing if the techniques Suahm Dosa taught the brothers actually was
the martial art of the Silla Hwa Rang, or another form of monk martial
In 1967, at the request of President Park, Dr. Joo Bang Lee organized
the unification of the Korean martial arts and directed the Unified
Korean Martial Arts Exposition on May 27, 1968 at the Jang Chung
Sports Arena in Seoul. Since it was difficult for all martial art
organization leaders to agree on methods of administration, this
organization was also disbanded shortly after the exposition.
Following the dissolution, Dr. Joo Bang Lee concentrated his efforts
solely on the development of his martial art to the exclusion of all
other martial arts. He renamed it Hwa Rang Do translated to mean "The
Way of the Flowering Manhood". (Do - represents "the way" or the
"martial art"). Also this marked the first time the character for
"Way" was used in connection with the Hwa Rang and the unarmed martial
In 1968, Head Grandmaster Joo Sang Lee introduced Hwa Rang Do to the
United States of America. Dr. Joo Bang Lee became the system's supreme
grandmaster upon Suahm Dosa's death in 1969. He immigrated to America
in 1972 and founded the World Hwa Rang Do Association and since then
Hwa Rang Do has spread all over the world. Today Dr. Joo Bang Lee
presides over the World Hwa Rang Do Association, Hwa Rang Do World
Headquarters in Downey, California (USA).
Hwa Rang Do is a combination of UM (soft/circular movement) and YANG
(hard/linear movement). The Mu Sul (martial aspects) of Hwa Rang Do
can be further explained in four distinct - though interconnecting -
major paths of study.
NAE GONG - deals with developing, controlling, and directing one's Ki,
or internal energy force, through breathing and meditation exercises
in conjunction with specific physical techniques.
WAE GONG - Wae gong includes more than 4000 offensive and defensive
combative applications. Combining elements predominantly tense and
linear in nature with those soft and circular, these techniques mesh
to form a natural fighting system. This phase includes full
instruction in all hand strikes and blocks (trapping and grabbing as
well as deflection applications, using the hands, wrist, forearm,
elbows, arms and shoulders), 365 individual kicks, throws and falls
from any position and onto any surfaces, human anatomical structure as
it pertains to combat applications (knowing and utilizing the body's
weak points to effectively control the opponent, regardless of their
size), joint manipulation and breaking, finger pressure-point
application, prisoner arrest, control and transport, grappling
applications, forms, offensive choking and flesh-tearing techniques,
defense against multiple opponents, breaking techniques,
counter-attacks, and killing techniques.
MOO GI GONG - involves the offensive and defensive use of the over 108
traditional weapons found within 20 categories of weaponry. By
learning these various weapon systems, the practitioner can most
effectively utilize any available object as a weapon as the situation
SHIN GONG - is the study, development, and control of the human mind
in order to attain one's full potential and mental capabilities.
Techniques are taught to achieve an increase in one's total awareness,
focus, and concentration levels. Included are instruction in :
controlling one's mind; development of the "sixth sense"; memory
recall; the study of human character and personalities; practical
psychology; visualization; the art of concealment and stealth as
utilized by special agents (Sulsa); as well as advanced, secretive
applications. Hwa Rang Do teaches both the martial art (mu-sul) and
healing art (in-sul). If one is able to injure or worse, then he/she
should know how to heal as well, once again maintaining harmony
through balance of opposites. First aid applications, revival
techniques are taught in conjunction with the traditional full studies
of acupuncture, Royal Family acupressure, herbal and natural
medicines, and bone setting.
A typical training session includes Meditation (beginning and end of
class). Total body stretching and warm-up exercises. Basic punching
and kicking practice. Ki power exercises. "Basic-8" combination drills
(which vary by belt rank). Two-man countering techniques (vary by belt
rank). Open session which may include: sparring, tumbling, grappling,
sweeps, or advanced techniques. Self-defense techniques. Cool down
exercises. Hwa Rang Do code of ethics.
For further information, please refer to
and/or write to:
World Hwa Rang Do Association
8200 E. Firestone Blvd.,
Downey, Ca 90241
Intro: The Art of drawing the sword for combat.
This art is very old, and has strong philosophical and historical ties
to Kenjutsu. It was practiced by Japanese warriors for centuries.
The object is to draw the sword perfectly, striking as it is drawn,
so that the opponent has no chance to defend against the strike.
Usually practiced in solo form (kata), but also has partner forms
Sub-Styles: Muso Shinden Ryu, Muso Jikishin Ryu, and others.
(Contributors: Neil Ohlenkamp,
Judo is a sport and a way to get in great shape, but is also very
useful for self-defense.
Judo is derived from Jujutsu (see Jujutsu). It was created by
Professor Jigoro Kano who was born in Japan in 1860 and who died in
1938 after a lifetime of promoting Judo. Mastering several styles of
jujutsu in his youth he began to develop his own system based on
modern sports principles. In 1882 he founded the Kodokan Judo
Institute in Tokyo where he began teaching and which still is the
international authority for Judo. The name Judo was chosen because it
means the "gentle way". Kano emphasised the larger educational value
of training in attack and defense so that it could be a path or way of
life that all people could participate in and benefit from. He
eliminated some of the traditional jujutsu techniques and changed
training methods so that most of the moves could be done with full
force to create a decisive victory without injury.
The popularity of Judo increased dramatically after a famous contest
hosted by the Tokyo police in 1886 where the Judo team defeated the
most well-known jujutsu school of the time. It then became a part of
the Japanese physical education system and began its spread around the
world. In 1964 men's Judo competition became a part of the Olympics,
the only eastern martial art that is an official medal sport. In 1992
Judo competition for women was added to the Olympics.
Judo is practiced on mats and consists primarily of throws
(nage-waza), along with katame-waza (grappling), which includes
osaekomi-waza (pins), shime-waza (chokes), and kansetsu-waza
(armbars). Additional techniques, including atemi-waza (striking) and
various joint locks are found in the judo katas. Judo is generally
compared to wrestling but it retains its unique combat forms. As a
daughter to Jujutsu these techniques are also often taught in Judo
Because the founder was involved in education (President of Tokyo
University) Judo training emphasizes mental, moral and character
development as much as physical training. Most instructors stress the
principles of Judo such as the principle of yielding to overcome
greater strength or size, as well as the scientific principles of
leverage, balance, efficiency, momentum and control.
Judo would be a good choice for most children because it is safe and
Judo training has many forms for different interests. Some students
train for competition by sparring and entering the many tournaments
that are available. Other students study the traditional art and
forms (kata) of Judo. Other students train for self-defense, and yet
other students play Judo for fun. Black belts are expected to learn
all of these aspects of Judo.
Because Judo originated in modern times it is organized like other
major sports with one international governing body, the International
Judo Federation (IJF), and one technical authority (Kodokan). There
are several small splinter groups (such as the Zen Judo Assoc.) who
stress judo as a "do" or path, rather than a sport.
Unlike other martial arts, Judo competition rules, training methods,
and rank systems are relatively uniform throughout the world.
Old, practical, fighting art. A parent to Judo, Aikido, and Hapkido.
The begining of Ju-jutsu can be found in the turbulent period of
Japanese history between the 8th and 16th Century. During this time,
there was almost constant civil war in Japan and the classical
weaponed systems were developed and constantly refined on the battle
field. Close fighting techniques were developed as part of these
systems to be use in conjunction with weapons against armoured, armed
apponents. It was from these techniques that Ju-jutsu arose.
The first publicly recognised Ju-jutsu ryu was formed by Takenouchie
Hisamori in 1532 and consisted of techniques of sword, jo-stick and
dagger as well as unarmed techniques.
In 1603, Tokugawa Ieyasu brought peace to Japan by forming the
Tokugawa military government. This marked the beginning of the Edo
period of Japanese history (1603-1868), during which waring ceased to
be a dominant feature of Japanese life.
In the beginning of this period there was a general shift from
weaponed forms of fighting to weaponless styles. These weaponless
styles were developed from the grappling techniques of the weaponed
styles and were collectively known as ju-jutsu. During the height of
the Edo period, there were more than 700 systems of jujutsu.
The end of the Edo was marked by the Meiji Restoration, an abortive
civil war that moved power from the Shogun back to the Emperor. A
large proportion of the Samurai class supported the Shogun during the
war. Consequently, when power was restored to the Emperor, many things
related to the Samurai fell into disrepute. An Imperial edict was
decreed, declaring it a criminal offence to practice the old style
combative martial arts. During the period of the Imperial edict,
Ju-jutsu was almost lost. However, some masters continued to practice
their art "under-ground", or moved to other countries, allowing the
style to continue. By the mid twenty century, the ban on ju-jutsu in
Japan had lifted, allowing the free practicing of the art.
The style encompasses throws, locks, and striking techniques, with a
strong emphasis on throws, locks, and defensive techniques. It is
also characterized by in-fighting and close work. It is a circular,
hard/soft, external style.
Training: Practical with a heavy emphasis on sparring and mock combat.
There are many, each associated with a different "school" (Ryu). Here
is a partial list: Daito Ryu, Danzan Ryu, Shidare Yanagi Ryu, Hokuto
Ryu, Hakko Ryu, Hontai Yoshin Ryu, Sosuishi Ryu, Kito Ryu, Kyushin Ryu.
A more modern addition to this list is "Brazilian Jujutsu" or "Gracie
Jujutsu", so named because of its development by the Gracie family of
Brazil. Gracie/Brazilian Jujutsu (or GJJ/BJJ as it has come to be
known on ) has a heavy emphasis on
(Contributors: Peter Jason Ward - ,
An eclectic martial art that is a blend of Karate, Judo, Kempo, and
Boxing, from which arts it takes its name.
Kajukenbo was synthesized in the Palomas settlements of Hawaii during
the years 1949-1952. Five practitioners of their respective martial
arts developed Kajukenbo to complement each others styles to allow
effective fighting at all ranges and speeds. The last living founder
of Kajukenbo is Sijo Adriano D. Emperado who practiced kempo and
escrima. (Other founders are P.Y.Y. Choo, Frank Ordonez, J. Holck,
and Professor C. Chang). It was decided that kempo would be the
scafolding around which Kajukenbo was built. The arts drawn upon to
found Kajukenbo are Tang soo do, judo, ju-jitsu, kempo, and chu'an fa
gung fu (Chinese boxing); hence the name Ka-ju-kem-bo (Tang Soo Do was
shortened as a form of karate, even though that is technically
To test the effectiveness of their origional techniques the five
founders would get into fights around the Palomas settlements (the
worst slum in Hawaii at the time). If the technique succeeded
consistently in streetfighting it was kept as part of the system.
>From these field test came Kajukenbo's Quins (known as the Palomas
sets (forms or kata)), Natural laws (self-defense), Tricks
(close-quarters fighting), and grab arts (escapes).
Kajukenbo concentrates on being an effective art at all ranges of
fighting, kicking -> Punching -> Trapping -> Grappling. While many
schools of karate and Korean martial arts concentrate on kata,
Kajukenbo stresses the self-defence movements over the relatively
fewer forms in the art. The reasoning behind this is that a
practitioner must be capable of defending himself in streetfighting
situations before turning inward to perfect the 'art' of Kajukenbo.
At higher levels there is meditative and chi training, but the author
cannot comment further at his level of experience.
Kajukenbo stresses the following-up of techniques based on an
opponents reactions and not stopping with just one hit. The reasoning
is that while one should strive to end a fight with the fewest
techniques nessesary, it is important to know how an opponent will
respond to attacks, and how best to take advantage of his reactions.
A major ethical point behind my instruction was, "If he starts the
fight, you decide when the fight is over."
The training is physically intense and very demanding. Exercise is a
part of the class structure to insure that practitioners will be
physically capable of defending themselves outside of the dojo. The
warm-up and callistenics typically last 1/3 of the class period.
Emphasis is placed on bag work (kick, punching, elbows, and knees) as
well as sparring and grappling (contact with control). After a certain
amount of time training, students begin to throw real punches at each
other and their partner is expected to react appropriately or face the
consequences. Learning to absorb and soften an impact is also a major
facet of training. Quins (kata) are performed to fine-tune a person's
movements while working with partners for self defense teaches a
student how to manipulate an opponent and follow up on his reactions.
Kajukenpo, formed in 1970 by Algene Caraulia, and headquartered in
Kenpo Karate is considered to be a sub-style of Kajukenbo (see
eparate entry on Kenpo) and is very close to "the original"
Tum Pai, created in part by Sifu Al Dacascos, is adminstered by Sifu
Jon Loren, and incorporates more of the soft, internal Chinese arts.
Kajukenbo Chuan Fa was created by Dela Cruz and Professor Emperado and
has been taken over by Leonard Endrizzi and Bill Owens. It includes
more Chinese martial arts than Kenpo Karate and is softer but no less
Wun Hop Kuen Do is the newest sub-style - the personal expression of
Sifu Dacascos, containing the original syllabus but with more Chinese
and Filipino influence.
Kali, Escrima, and Arnis are all terms for the native fighting arts of
the Philippines, specifically the arts that use weapons. 'Arnis' and
'Escrima' (or 'Eskrima') are words rooted in Spanish, while 'Kali'
shows up in various pre-Spanish Pilipino dialects.
Some authorities say that Arnis is a term used in the northern parts of
Luzon Island, Escrima or Eskrima is used more commonly in the middle
parts of the Philippines, such as Cebu City, and Kali is used in the
southern island of Mindanao. Some of those who say that Kali is the
term for the southern styles claim that, since Mindanao was never
conquered by the Spanish to the extent that the rest of the Philippines
was, Kali more closely resembles the original pre-Spanish arts of the
area, and is more "complete" (covers more combative possibilities).
There are also some who claim that the word Kali is part of a modern
attempt to marginalize the Spanish (and other European) influence on
Filipino martial arts, and some go so far as to refer to Kali as a
However, most people tend to say that the words don't matter - every
village, and often every master, has a distinct style, and that's what
the important thing is - "do you study Illustrisimo, Caballero, or
Cabales style?" Not "do you study escrima or kali?"
Origin: The Phillipines
Filipino martial arts are the result of the interaction of Spanish and
possibly Italian and other European styles of sword-fighting (cut and
thrust rather than fencing, probably) with the native arts that existed
at the time. Although the European influence is probably mostly
Spanish, there is some evidence of Italian and possibly other European
mercenaries present in the Phillippines, and they probably used (and
possibly taught) their own native fighting styles.
The most popular legend concerning the Filipino arts is that Datu
(Chief) Lapu Lapu killed the Spanish explorer Ferdinand Magellan in
There are many different styles of Filipino martial arts, but general
categories can be drawn along the lines of range. Largo Mano styles
tend to prefer staying at long distance from their opponents, and using
well-timed and placed strikes to the hands of their opponents to disarm
them. Corto or Serrada styles are the opposite, tending to crowd into
their opponents, where the opponent will hopefully be uncomfortable and
unprepared, while the Serrada practitioner, by virtue of his practice,
will feel at home at this range. Other styles prefer the medio, or
middle range, which is between Largo Mano and Serrada. There are also
styles, such as Lameco Escrima, that address all three ranges. The
name Lameco even comes from these ranges; (La)rgo Mano, (Me)dio, and
The different Filipino styles typically cover some (or all) of the following
1 Single Stick (or long blade)
2 Double long weapon
3 Long & Short (sword & dagger, e.g.)
4 Single dagger
5 Double Dagger
6 Palm Stick/Double-end Dagger
7 Empty Hands (punching, kicking, grappling)
8 Spear/Staff, long weapons (two-handed)
9 Flexible weapons (whip, sarong, etc.)
10 Throwing weapons
11 Projectile weapons (bows, blowguns)
12 Healing arts
A further distinction that some people make is that some Filipino
styles are, at their heart, blade arts, while others are designed to
work with sticks. There are some arts, such as Sayoc Kali, that focus
on the knife almost exclusively, while there are others, such as some
lineages of Balintawak Eskrima, that focus almost entirely on the
single stick. This focus in certain lineages or styles may be the
origin of the notion that Kali is more "complete" than Arnis or
Escrima. However, this is a matter of some contention.
A distinctive feature of all of these Filipino arts is their use of
geometry. In strikes/defenses and movement, lines and angles are very
important. In addition, the independent use of the hands, or hands and
feet, to do two different things at the same time, is a high-level
skill sought after a fair amount of experience.
Filipino styles normally classify attacks not by their weapon, or
their delivery style, but by the direction of their energy - for
example, a strike to the head is usually analyzed in terms of "a high
lateral strike." A punch to the gut is treated much the same as a
straight knife thrust to that region would be. Students learn how to
deal with the energy of the attack, and then apply that knowledge to
the slight variations that come with different lengths and types of
Filipino arts place great emphasis on footwork, mobility, and body
positioning. The same concepts (of angles of attack, deflections,
traps, passes, etc.) are applied to similar situations at different
ranges, making the understanding of ranges and how to bridge them very
important. The Filipinos make extensive use of geometric shapes,
superimposing them on a combat situation, and movement patterns, to
teach fighters to use their position and their movement to best
advantage. Some styles emphasize line-cutting (a la Wing Chun), while
some are very circular (like Aikido). Some like to stay at long range,
some will move inside as soon as possible. These differences are hotly
debated, as are most things, but they all work differently for
Most Filipino arts stress the importance of disarming an opponent in
combat. This is not usually done gently, or by using a complex disarm
(although these are taught), but by "destroying" the hand holding the
attacking weapon using your weapon (break the hand, and the stick will
fall.) This is often referred to as "de-fanging the snake", since a
poisonous snake that has no fangs cannot harm you.
Latosa Escrima, Serrada Escrima, Dumog, Panandiakman, Panantukan, Sikaran.
Serrada Escrima, Balintawak Eskrima, Modern Arnis, Garimot Arnis,
Inosanto/LaCoste Kali, Sayoc Kali, Doce Pares, Pekiti-Tirsia Kali, many
Somewhat generic term used for Japanese and Okinawan fighting arts.
Karate is a term that either means "Chinese hand" or "Empty hand"
depending on which Japanese or Chinese characters you use to write it.
The Okinawan Karates could be said to have started in the 1600s when
Chinese practitioners of various Gongfu styles mixed and trained with
local adherents of an art called "te" (meaning "hand") which was a
very rough, very simple fighting style similar to Western boxing.
These arts generally developed into close- range, hard, external
In the late 19th century Gichin Funakoshi trained under several of the
great Okinawan Karate masters (Itosu, Azato) as well as working with
Jigoro Kano (see Judo) and Japanese Kendo masters (see Kendo).
Influenced by these elements, he created a new style of Karate. This
he introduced into Japan in the first decade of the 20th century and
thus to the world. The Japanese Karates (or what most people refer to
when they say "karate") are of this branch.
Okinawan Karate styles tend to be hard and external. In defense they
tend to be circular, and in offense linear. Okinawan karate styles
tend to place more emphasis on rigorous physical conditioning than the
Japanese styles. Japanese styles tend to have longer, more stylistic
movements and to be higher commitment. They also tend to be linear in
movement, offense, and defense.
Both tend to be high commitment, and tend to emphasize kicks and
punches, and a strong offense as a good defense.
This differs widely but most of the Karate styles emphasize a fairly
equal measure of basic technique training (repitition of a particular
technique), sparring, and forms. Forms, or kata, as they are called,
are stylized patterns of attacks and defenses done in sequence for
Sub-Styles: (Okinawan): Uechi-Ryu, Goju-Ryu, Shorin-Ryu, Isshin-Ryu
(Japanese): Shotokan, Shito-Ryu, Wado-Ryu
Here is a more complete list (complements of Howard High) in which
Okinawan and Japanese styles are mixed:
Ashihara, Chinto-Ryu, Chito-Ryu, Doshinkan, Gohaku-Kai, Goju-Ryu
(Kanzen), Goju-Ryu (Okinawan), Goju-Ryu (Meibukan), Gosoku-Ryu,
Isshin-Ryu, Kenseido, Koei-Kan, Kosho-Ryu Kenpo, Kyokushinkai, Kyu
Shin Ryu, Motobu-Ryu, Okinawan Kempo, Okinawa Te, Ryokukai, Ryuken,
Ryukyu Kempo, Sanzyu-Ryu , Seido, Seidokan, Seishin-Ryu, Shindo
Jinen-Ryu, Shinjimasu, Shinko-Ryu, Shito-Ryu (Itosu-Kai), Shito-Ryu
(Seishinkai), Shito-Ryu (Kofukan), Shito-Ryu (Kuniba Ha) , Shito-Ryu
(Motobu Ha), Shorin-Ryu (Kobayashi), Shorin-Ryu (Matsubayashi),
Shorin-Ryu (Shobayashi), Shorin-Ryu (Matsumura), Shorinji Kempo,
Shorinji-Ryu, Shoshin-Ryu, Shotokai, Shotokan, Shotoshinkai, Shudokai,
Shuri-Ryu, Shuri-Te, Uechi-Ryu , Wado-Kai, Wado-Ryu, Washin-Ryu,
Yoseikan, Yoshukai, Yuishinkan.
Wado-Ryu was founded by Hironori Ohtsuka around the 1920s. Ohtsuka
studied Jujutsu for many years before becoming a student of Gichin
Funakoshi. Considered by some to be Funakoshi's most brilliant
student, Ohtsuka combined the movements of Jujutsu with the striking
techniques of Okinawan Karate. After the death of Ohtsuka in the early
1980s, the style split into two factions: Wado Kai, headed by
Ohtsuka's senior students; and Wado Ryu, headed by Ohtsuka's son,
Jiro. Both factions continue to preserve most of the basic elements of
Uechi-ryu Karate, although it has become one of the main Okinawan
martial arts and absorbed many of the traditional Okinawan karate
training methods and approaches, is historically, and to some extent
technically quite separate. The "Uechi" of Uechi-ryu commemorates
Uechi Kanbun, an Okinawan who went to Fuzhou, the capital city of
Fujian province in China in 1897 to avoid being drafted into the
Japanese army. There he studied under master Zhou Zihe for ten years,
finally opening his own school, one of the few non-Chinese who
ventured to do so at the time. The man responisble for bringing
Uechi-ryu to the US is George Mattson.
Uechi-ryu, unlike the other forms of Okinawan and Japanese karate
mentioned in the FAQ, is only a few decades removed from its Chinese
origins. Although it has absorbed quite a bit of Okinawan influence
and evolved closer to such styles as Okinawan Goju-ryu over those
decades, it still retains its original Chinese flavor, both in its
technique and in the culture of the dojo. It is a "half-hard,
half-soft" style very similar to such southern Chinese styles as
Fukienese Crane (as still practiced in the Chinese communities of
Malaysia), Taiwanese Golden Eagle, and even Wing Chun. Conditioning
the body for both attack and defense is a common characteristic of
both Okinawan karate and southern Shaolin "street" styles, and as such
is an important part of Uechi training. There is a strong internal
component to the practice, including focused breathing and tensioning
exercises similar to Chinese Qigong. Uechi, following its Chinese
Crane heritage, emphasizes circular blocks, low snap kicks, infighting
(coordinating footwork with grabs, locks, throws, and sweeps), and
short, rapid hand traps and attacks (not unlike Wing Chun).
Intro: This is a popular sport in Japanese communities.
Kendo is the sport and competitive form of Kenjutsu. Kendo has been
practiced for a long time in one form or another.
The practitioners wear protective armor and use simulated swords
(split bamboo called "shinai") to "spar" against one another. Strike
areas are limited as are moves. It is a very formal art. It is
linear, hard, and external.
Training mostly consists of two-person drills, basics, and some kata
that have been retained from kenjutsu between individuals.
Sub-Styles: none (?)
Intro: The combative use of a sword.
The origins of this art are lost in the midst of history. It probably
has its origins in 12th century or 11th century Japan. It is famous
in myth and story from people like Miyamoto Mushashi in the 15th
There are 4 root systems, Cujo-ryu, Nen-ryu, Kage-ryu and Shinto Ryu.
These probably all have roots prior to the beginning of the 16th
century. In the 16th century, there was an explosion of styles, with
many being formed between then and the present.
Modern kenjutsu schools trace from either the monk Jion (Nen ryu or
Cujo ryu) or from Iiosai, the founder of the Tenshin Shoden Katori
This is a hard, weapon style using the Japanese sword. It involves
powerful, high commitment strikes to selected targets in order to kill
the opponent. There is a strong side of spiritual and philosophical
study, similar in a way to that of Aikido.
There is a large amount of two-person work, mostly with wooden swords
(bokken). Some schools use the fukuru shinai, an ancestor of todays
weapon (Shinkage ryu, Nen-ryu). Sparring is a developed student
Kage, Shinkage, Yagyu Shinkage Cujo, Itto-ryu, Nen-ryu, Katori Shinto
Ryu, Kashima shin-ryu, Niten-ichi-ryu, Jigen-ryu.
Shinkage was a royal school - for the Shogun.
16.18) Kenpo (American - see also Kajukenbo)
Note: In the Japanese language, the consonants "n" and "m" have the
same symbol, thus the English spelling can be rendered either "Kempo"
or "Kenpo". There are several arts in this family, but the spelling
of "Ken/mpo" is not of significance in distinguishing between them.
This art is also called Kenpo Karate. American Kenpo is an eclectic
art developed by Hawaiian Ed Parker in the 60s. The art combines the
Kara-Ho Kenpo which Parker learned from William Chow with influences
from Chinese, Japanese, Hawaiian, and Western Martial sources.
American Kenpo blends circular motions and evasive movements with
linear kicks and punches. The art is oriented toward street-wise self
defense. A big emphasis on basics, sparring, and kata. It is similar
to most Karate styles in its training mechanisms.
The Tracy schools of Kenpo teach Parker's style, but are a
"politically" separate organization.
16.19) Kempo (Kosho Ryu)
Kosho Ryu Ken/mpo is a philosophical art much like Jeet Kune Do but
with a Zen influences...lots of mind science material and healing
arts. It is not a style of compiled kata or specific techniques..it is
a study of all motion and therefore cannot be stylised to look like a
specific teacher or animal movement. Thus, this writeup will discuss
only the history of the art.
Kosho Shorei Kempo was created by several happenings, spanning a
period of centuries. According to Mitose Sensei, during the invasion
of Genghis Khan, the Head Monk of the Shaolin Temple fled China and
found refuge with the Mitose family. In appreciation for the kindness
of the Mitose's, he taught them Shaolin Chuan Fa (Shorinji Kempo in
Japanese). From James Mitose's book:
"Fifteen hundred years ago, the ancestor (of the Author) was a Shinto
priest. He studied and taught many different martial arts including
sword fighting, lance fighting, fighting with the bow and arrow,
fighting on horseback, and swim fighting. Some arts looked like Kempo,
Karate, Gongfu, and Ju-jitsu- but they were different in many ways.
He mastered all of these arts and became Grand Master. Then Grand
Master Mitose founded a martial arts school and called his style
Mitose's Martial Art School."
In 1235 a Shinto priest whom James Mitose called his first ancestor
became enlightened to what we call Kempo. According to Mitose, this
man was a martial arts master and a Buddhist monk studying at Shaka-In
who found it difficult to be both. His religion taught him pacifism;
his martial art taught him destruction. He pondered this dilemma under
an old pine tree meaning Kosho in Japanese. He became enlightened and
was from then on known as, Kosho Bosatsu, the Old Pine Tree
Enlightened One. He discovered the relationship between man and Nature
and also the secret of the Escaping Arts which is what makes Kempo a
True and Pure Kempo or study of all Natural Law through a Martial Arts
medium. Then "the Grand Master founded the Kosho Shorei Temple of
Peace, True Self Defense and Kosho Shorei Yoga School. At that time,
he made up the Coat of Arms and the Motto for his Temple. In his
Temple, he taught how to escape from being harmed by using the
escaping patterns, with God's help."
Only 2 people in the world learned the Escaping Arts from Mitose
Sensei and one of these two learned all the facets of Kosho, namely
its 22 Generation Grandmaster Bruce Juchnik. The highest goal is to
defend oneself without body contact unlike Okinawan/Japanese Karate
systems or many other Ken/mpo systems.
Kosho Ryu influences can be seen in Ed Parker and his creation
American Kenpo. He added many labels to concepts inherent in Kosho
that had Japanese names or no labels at all.
References: "What Is Self Defense" 1953 James M. Mitose
"What Is True Self Defense" 1981 James M. Mitose
16.20) Kempo (Ryukyu)
Ryukyu Kempo (which roughly translates into Okinawan kung-fu, or
Chinese boxing science) is the original style of martial arts learned
and taught by Gichin Funakoshi on the island of Okinawa (1). It
stresses the existence of body points within your opponent that can be
struck or grappled for more effective fighting.
Origin: Okinawa Islands (Ryukyu island chain).
Practioners of Ryukyu Kempo believe that karate-do is a popular
subform of Kempo, established within this century by Gichin Funakoshi.
People with original copies of Funakoshi's first edition book _Ryukyu
Kempo_ state that he is clearly is grappling and touching an opponent.
Later editions and current karate books only show a practioner with a
retracted punch, where the original shows actively grappling an enemy.
It is felt that Funakoshi was the last of the purists, wanting all to
learn the art.
In subseqent years, the Okinawans, who have a culture and history of
their own, became disenchanted with the Japanese, and were less
inclined to teach them the "secret techniques" of self defence. When
American military men occupied Japan after WWII, they became enamored
of the martial-arts. It is theorized that the Japanese and Okinawans
were reluctant to teach the secrets of their national art to the
occupiers, and so taught a "watered down" version of karate-do usually
reserved for children. Contemporary Kempo practioners practice
"pressure point fighting" or Kyushu-jitsu and grappling, called Tuite.
It is an exact art of striking small targets on the body, such as
nerve centers, and grappling body points in manners similar to Jujitsu
Modern teachers of this are George Dillman of Reading, PA, Taiku Oyata
of Independence, Missouri, Rick Clark of Terre Haute, Indiana, and
The practioners of kempo believe that kata do not represent origin or
direction of attacks but positional techniques for the defender.
Concentration is made on physical perfection of kata and the Bunkai,
or explanation of the movements. Tournaments of kata and kumite
(sparriing) are encouraged as learning experiences, but not overly
stressed. Also taught is Kobudo, which is defined as weapons fighting
using ordinary hand tools.
Five principles to be observed in Oyata's school:
1. Proper distance.
2. Eye contact.
3. Minimum pain inflication on your opponent.
4. Legally safe.
5. Morally defensible.(3)
There are a couple of physical differences in Kempo and many other
styles. One is a three-quarter punch, rather than a full twist.
Second is a fist whereby the thumb stops at the first finger, rather
than the first two fingers. Third is the sword hand, which has the
little finger placed as parallel as possible to the third finger and
the thumb straight and on the inside rather than bent.(2)
(1) _Karate-Do: My Way of Life_ by Gichin Funakoshi
(2) _Kyusho Jitsu: The Dillman Method of Pressure Point Fighting_
by George A. Dillman with Chris Thomas.
(3) _Ryukyu Kempo: History and Basics_ by J. D. Logue (Oyata
"Kobudo" literally means "ancient martial ways". In the karate world,
it generally refers to those traditional Okinawan weapons whose
history and practice has been linked to that of karate.
Most Okinawan styles have at least some kobudo/kobujutsu curriculum.
In addition, there are at least two major Okinawan organizations whose
primary focus is these weapons arts: the Ryukyu Kobudo Hozon
Shinko-kai and the Okinawa Kobudo Renmei. In the US there is 'Okinawa
Kobudo Association, USA'; the shihan in the US is in Citrus Heights,
CA. There may be other US Kobudo organizations.
The most common kobudo weapons (and the ones most often taught by
Okinawan karate systems) are:
bo - staff, usually a rokushakubo or "six foot staff", although 4, 9,
and 12 foot staffs are also used.
sai - three-tined iron clubs, usually carried as a set of 3.
nunchaku - two short tapered wooden clubs, connected at the narrow
ends by a short rope or chain (a flail, as well as other uses).
kama - a sickle, used singly or in pairs;
tuifa/tonfa - a club with a hand-length perpendicular handle, the
ancestor to the police PR-24; usually used in pairs.
Less common weapons are:
koa - a hoe.
eku - a boat oar.
tekko - essentially brass knuckles.
shuchu - a small kubotan-like thing about 5" long.
san-setsu-kon - the 3-section staff.
surujin/suruchen - a weighted chain with a spike or blade on one end -
similar to the Chinese chain whip or the Japanese manrikigusari;
tinbe - actually, this is two weapons...the tinbe itself, which is a
small shield traditionally made of the shell of a sea tortoise, and
the rochin, which is a short spear with a cutting blade - the weapon
actually resembles a Zulu spear more than anything else.
kusarikama - a kama on the end of a rope or chain.
nunti - a short spear.
and a few other oddball implements of mayhem including spears and the
occasional pilfered Japanese sword ;-).
16.22) Krav Maga
Intro: The Israeli official Martial Art
The Krav Maga was developed in Israel in the early forties when the
underground liberation organizations were fighting for the
independence of the State of Israel. At that time, it was illegal to
possess weapons. The inventor and developer of the Krav Maga was a
champion heavy weight boxer, a judo champion, and an expert in
jiu-jutsu. In addition, he was as a trapeze acrobat and a well known
dancer. The knowledge he thus obtained, contributed to the
development of the Israeli martial art of self defense. There is no
hidden meaning behind the name Krav Maga, and literarily means
"contact fight / battle".
The Krav Maga was put into practice originally by the fighters of the
liberation organizations that often went to battle armed with knives
or sticks and with the knowledge of Krav Maga, and they were very
successful. After the establishment of the State of Israel, Krav Maga
was adopted as the official martial art taught in the defense forces,
and especially in the elite police and army units. Krav Maga was
integrated into army training by Imi Lichenfield, a career IDF officer
and chief instructor at the armys physical training facility at the
Wingate Institute. Imi is still active involved in the Krav Maga
Association and maintains the role of president.
Over the years, the Krav Maga has turned into an integrated part of
training in many disciplines such as educational institutes. Krav
Maga is taught in many public schools in Isreal.
The Krav Maga is not an ecletic martial art system, rather, it was
developed with the perception that the classic martial arts were
lacking various elements. The defense needs in the eras that the
classic martial arts were developed were different than those of
today. New unique techniques for defense against pistols, guns and
hand grenades were considered needed, and therefore developed.
Krav Maga has no katas or specific sequences that must be followed.
Students use the basic moves in conjunction with any one of a number
of other moves to fend off an attack, the key idea being adaptability
to new situations through improvisation. Emphasis is put on speed,
endurance, strength, accuracy and co-ordination especially for
intensive Krav Maga training.
Since the Krav Maga by definition is for self defense, it does not
have any constitution and judicial rules and therefore there are no
contests and exhibitions. The training is for practical usage in the
every day reality. There is a colored belt system with a Black Belt
typically granted after 8 to 10 years of practice. Spiritual and
philosophical aspects are studied only at the Black Belt level.
Get information from this website:
and/or write to:
Krav Maga Academy
57 West 84 st.
New york, NY 10024
Brazilian Association of Krav Maga:
Intro: Japanese target archery practiced as a martial art.
Kyudo, the Way of the Bow, is the oldest of Japan's traditional
martial arts. The bow has been used in Japan since prehistoric times.
From the fourth to the ninth century, close contacts between China
and Japan had a great influence on Japanese archery, especially the
Confucian belief that through a person's archery their true characters
could be determined. Over hundreds of years archery was influenced by
the Shinto and Zen Buddhist religions along with the pressing
practical requirements of warriors. Court nobles concentrated on
ceremonial archery while the warrior class emphasized kyujutsu, the
martial technique of using the bow in actual warfare.
With the introduction of firearms the bow as a weapon was neglected
and almost died out all together until Honda Toshizane, a kyudo
instructor at Tokyo Imperial University, combined elements of the
warrior style and the court ceremonial style into a hybrid style which
ultimately became known as the Honda Ryu (Honda martial school). This
style found great favor with the general public and he is generally
credited with saving Japanese Archery from oblivion. With the
American occupation banning all martial art instruction, traditional
kyujutsu schools declined further and when the ban was lifted, Kyudo,
as opposed to kyujutsu, became widely practiced and the Zen Nihon
Kyudo Federation (All Japan Kyudo Federation) was established in 1953,
publishing the standard kyudo textbook called the Kyohon, and
overseeing Kyudo development both in Japan and internationally up to
the present time. There now exists a European Kyudo Federation which
has annual seminars and promotion tests and in 1993 the first such
seminar and promotion test was held in America in San Jose,
Kyudo is a highly meditative martial art whose ultimate goals are Shin
(Truth i.e. the ultimate reality), Zen (Goodness) and Bi (Beauty).
When asked the question "What is Truth?" a master archer would pick up
a bow and arrow and shoot it, without saying a word, allowing the
level of mastery of the bow to serve as the gauge of the archer's
progress along the "way" thereby showing the archer's knowledge of
reality i.e. "Truth" itself.
By such diligent practice Confucian theory teaches that the archer
will become morally good (Zen), and this sincerity of personality will
excite the aesthetic sense of anyone watching at an intuitive,
emotional level giving the performance a beauty derived not only from
the technical skill of the archer but also from the archer's emotional
maturity and spiritual sincerity.
Students typically begin by practicing visualization: performing the
shooting motions with no equipment and then perhaps using the gomuyumi
(rubber bow), a short stick with a length of rubber tube attached, to
acquire the feel of real bow resistance. The first actual shots are
fired into a straw bundle, called a makiwara, from a short distance of
about three feet. The student then progresses to target shooting at a
fixed regulation distance of 28 meters.
All students, no matter which instructor or school, will shoot the
same design of Japanese bow which is little changed from the twelfth
century. Traditionally made of hardwoods laminated front and back with
bamboo the Japanese bow is one of the longest in the world, usually
over seven feet in length. It is a natural double recurve bow with the
arrow nocked one third of the way from the bottom and the bow actually
rotating in the hand at release approx. 270 degrees. The unique
design of the bow requires that the bow actually be torqued or twisted
in full draw to make the arrow fly straight.
Technically, styles can be divided into two broad categories, shamen
uchiokoshi and shomen uchiokoshi, the modern shomen uchiokoshi style
having been developed by Honda Toshizane. Shamen archers predraw the
bow at an angle to the body and fix their grip on the bow before
raising it. Shomen archers raise the bow straight over the head and
fix their final grip on the bow in a predraw above the head.
There were dozens of traditional schools before World War II and many
of them survive today provoking endless debate as to the superiority
of one over the other. In fact, some traditional schools still do not
use the word kyudo preferring the word kyujutsu instead to describe
their teachings. Some styles heavily emphasize the spiritual aspect of
shooting and some proponents of Zen Archery view kyudo as a way to
further their own spiritual development in Zen Buddhism.
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Research Systems Programmer
Last Updated on Friday, 29 January 2010 10:42