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Martial Arts

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by danqi, Oct 12, 2002.

  1. danqi


    May 21, 2001
    This call goes out to all those profound in martial arts. I need some counseling concerning which art I want to study. I know it is kind of ... hmm... unfitting to post such a thing in a bass forum, but this is the only forum I really know. I know you people (kinda), and I know what to make of your judgements.
    If anyone knows any martial arts forums where I could post this too, please tell me.
    So here it goes:
    I would like to start training a martial art. I just don‘t know which one and I thought you could maybe help me deciding, since my knowledge is extremely limited.
    I understand that it is not possible to answer questions like "What is the best martial art?", because they are simply different, not better or worse. I guess it depends on what is the best art for one specific person. But how do I know what is best for me?
    I will start by giving you some information about myself. Maybe then you could suggest a fitting art.
    I am 19 years old, male, 1.86 m (about 6‘2“) tall and weigh about 75 kg. I have two main goals concerning training martial arts. First: I want to learn street-appliable self-defense. Second: I want to shape my character, explore myself, etc. I have no interest whatsoever in taking part in competitions or other sporting events.
    So I guess I want to learn a martial ART and not a martial SPORT like judo.
    I have already spent some time looking through the internet for information. I think I prefer well balanced martial arts, that use soft and hard techniques, punches and kicks and locks and utiliarize circular as well as linear motions, while tending more to circular and soft than to linear and hard movements. Also it should not be extremely physically demanding. I do not want to spent all of my free time doing body workouts. But since I have absolutely no experience with martial arts, I would not take these preferences too seriously, since they might change when I start training something and begin to understand what that stuff is all about.
    By browsing the web I have found the following arts to be interesting:

    Wing Chun
    Jeet Kune Do
    Baguazhang (Pa Kua Chang)
    Hwa Rang Do
    Praying Mantis (Tanglangquan/Tanglangpai)
    Yoseikan Budo

    Now, the problem is, that in order to really decide between these arts, I guess I would have to try them all out. And not only once, but for a year at least.
    That is, of course, not possible. :-(
    That‘s why I am asking for your help.

    Thank you very much,
  2. Bard2dbone


    Aug 4, 2002
    Arlington TX
    When you describe the art form you are looking for (circular more than linear, soft more than hard,etc) I picture Aikido. But I would also recommend for usefulness Krav Maga. The police taught us some of this method and I found it much more intuitive and useful than what I was shown in the Navy.
  3. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX
    If you want something that is very practical as far as street defense goes I wouldn't recommend any of the kung fu (gong fu) arts. Having lived in China I've seen some of the best of gong fu and it's a really graceful art that is great for self-discipline, fitness etc... but it's just not practical in it's traditional form and I've never seen a gong fu practicioner have any success in mixed martial arts contests.

    I agree with bard about Aikido. It's very circular and based on natural motions..that or Hapkido which mixes in striking.

    brad cook
  4. danqi


    May 21, 2001
    I really don't know about Aikido. I think - for me - Hapkido would be much more interesting, because Aikido seems too be too soft for my taste. Also, I have heard it lacks effectivity when you are facing multiple opponents. I think it is very likely that in a "street-situation" the agressor has a buddy on his side. While you are dealing with the first guy by locking him somehow, his friend will just knock you down. Please correct me, if I am totally wrong.

    What about Jeet Kune Do (sp?)?
  5. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I studied Aikido for 5 years, and I loved it. It is only a "soft" art in that it has no forms of attack - it's all defense. You use the force and motion of the attacker's energy against him/her. You also learn to fall and roll without injuring yourself. It is somewhat related to Ju-Jitsu (I have no idea how to spell that), but the latter is more aggressive. Bottom line: If you're looking for something that will help you kick someone else's @$$, Aikido is not for you. On the other hand, if you are looking for something that will help you keep your own @$$ from getting kicked, Aikido is the way to go. I chose it for the above reasons, plus the fact that there is very little potential for hand damage since you never really throw any punches.
  6. danqi


    May 21, 2001
    Why did you quit it?
  7. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    that's the whole point behind jeet, isn't it?

    still, though, my experience is a bit different than yours. i've seen a 5 animals practicioner totally destroy all comers at a mixed arts contest full contact no pads - the dude broke another guy's (mui tai boxer) shin with a lotus kick :eek: . the issue is how points are determined, and whether joint locks are allowed. many point systems favor straight-ahead karate - a good friend and training partner of mine competed in a karete competition and did a behind-the-back lotus kick that wasn't even scored by one of the judges - the judge didn't even see it, even though it knocked the wind out of the competitor. funny thing is my friend ended up losing, since the scoring system they were using favored karate moves.

    if it's a no holds barred competition, the gracie jujitsu practicioners are going to have a lock ;).

    lastly, a bad ass is a bad ass, regardless of school or style. some half drunk wingnut starts giving you crap and you start kicking his ass with some exotic 5 animals or hsing-yi, his buddies are going to run.
  8. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    As stupid as it sounds on my part, I never even thought of that. I was considering starting a boxing program in addition to the lifting I do, but I think I'll reconsider. :eek: I'd like to do SOMEthing besides lift.
  9. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    Nice selection of choices. I am more interested in the Chinese styles that are often labled as internal arts. Baguazhang and Xingyiquan would be categorized as internal arts and don't forget about Tai Chi. Shuai Jiao is not an internal art per se but Tai Chi, Bagua & Xing Yi would contain elements of it if the teacher is authentic.

    I would not consider either of the arts mentioned above to be methods that would provide you with a lot of skills short term. All three are such that you can practice them at a high level throughout your lifetime and the applications can be very devastating.

    See if you can find someone who teaches Pentjak Silat and Kuntao in your area. If you can, I think that art would be worth looking into. There's a whole lot of street applicable techniques contained in that art form. Go to www.google.com to search for more information. Good luck!
  10. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    I have to agree with J.T. I've been exposed to some pretty good Chinese stylists.
  11. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    To make a long story short, through a divorce. You know how in a difficult divorce, one person "retains" certain friends, places, possessions, etc? In mine, my ex was getting ready to teach Aikido at the University here, so it was only fitting that she be the one to continue studying at our Dojo. The only other "Aikido" school in town was run by a man I don't care for, so I just dropped it and started lifting instead. Now that I'm remarried and about to have a son, I know that I want to do a martial art with my son when he's old enough.

    Wow, so much for keeping a long story short...:rolleyes: :D
  12. James G. Ellis

    James G. Ellis

    Jun 22, 2001
    I find aikido to be highly useful in real world, multiple-attacker situations. It has preserved my well-being more than once and can be a highly-damaging method depending on the level of force initiated by the attacker.
    Having studied judo, jiu-jitsu and some highly bastardized, hybrid forms of self-defense and having put them to the test in real combat situations with a true threat to my well-being inside correctional situations as well as on the "street" I can tell you of a certainty, aikido is VERY useful.
    Unless you just want to go attack somebody. In that case, get a Louisville Slugger or a gun. ;-)

  13. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX
    As far as I know.

    Sheesh...your experience is definitely different than mine. That guy was indeed one of the badasses. Was he native Chinese (my guess is "no")? Actually I'm guessing that the gong fu guy wasn't a native Chinese and the muy thai guy wasn't native Thai. My reasoning for this is that having spent time in both Thailand and China I've found that Chinese gong fu guys tend to be a little unrealistic as to what a real world situation might be and what is practical. I've also found that the thai boxers are freaking tough. They train from little kids and are constantly doing things to strengthen striking surfaces (such as shins). They are tough mothers. So are my guesses right? (Hopefully I won't get a lesson in generalizations here :))

    Yup...remember when Royce just rocked those huge guys? Severns/Gracie was a such a great display of Gracie Jujitsu and how it works and the patience involved. A lot of guys are getting way more wise to that though and learning a lot of hybrid forms and adding it to a an arsenal of other styles and methods. Those seem to be the guys that are winning these days...although I haven't watched any no-holds barred stuff in a long time.

    Anyway...that's about all I've got.

    brad cook
  14. Aaack! I usually stay out of martial arts threads / forums but I gotta jump in here. I've been doing kung fu for 6 years now and have to say that kung fu IS an effective fighting art.

    THAT BEING SAID, I have to agree that there are horrible "Chinese" kung fu practitioners. Nay, GOD AWFUL Chinese martial artists. Most of the kung fu you see is garbage because the good martial artists stay away from the limelight / politics.

    (Man, stay away from the martial arts forums. Lots of knowledge but even more EGO. You'd think that martial arts would be polite and respectful. Good luck.)

    Anyways, Orthanc, I think you have it backwards. You should see which martial arts styles are available for you THEN check them out on the internet.

    Visit the schools you are interested in joining then watch the classes. See if the teaching style, curriculum and company is to your liking.


    Oh ya, Wing Chun is a pretty good style. I don't do it but it's a practical (and popular) fighting style.
  15. danqi


    May 21, 2001
    What is the point with internal arts? What makes them more interesting?

    That's fline with me. Of course, like everybody (I guess), I am eager to see quick results, but I also understand that that is not the point behind studying a martial art.

    I have not yet found out much about Kuntao. Silat seems to be centreed around the use of weapons (correct me if I am wrong), which makes it not very attractive for me.

    You are probably right. But that's easier said than done:D . I found a nice website that lists all sport clubs and sports available in Hamburg. It's just that the site does not seem to work with my browser. But that won't stop me.:cool:
    It seems like there are quite a lot of schools around here. That's why I am trying to get some information on the internet. That way I can close in to some styles and don't have to check out 200 schools (imaginary number).

    It seems like Aikido is really popular among you guys. I gotta check that out, too.
  16. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    I think that you will find that most, if not all, of the martial arts that you listed above include a lot of extensive weapons training. Don't shy away from an art because of that. Weapons training can actually help your empty-hand technique. Silat/Kuntao also incorporates the use of weapons but it is a very effective art for the unarmed person. If you're looking for quick results, I would definitely check it out. I found a Deutsch site that may help you with your search. Click ~~~~~~> here to take a look.

    Aikido does not include any kicks or punches but it is a high art form that you should probably consider. It would not be one that falls into the quick results description though.
  17. I know that aikido is a "defensive" martial art in the sense that you use the opponent's attack/momentum against them. My question though, is can't you hurt someone really badly? What kinds of "moves" are available? If someone were to throw a punch, what could an aikido master do? Could he end up breaking the opponent's wrist, or would he use the momentum of the punch to throw the opponent down on the ground?

    These are just totally hypothetical questions on my part as I have no deep understanding of aikido.
  18. danqi


    May 21, 2001
    Thanks for your tips. But to set that straight: I do NOT target for quick results. Of course, it would be cool to press a button and learn an art in 2 seconds.:D
    But I know that there are no shortcuts to learning a martial art. I understand that the mental processes take many years to develop and I have no problems with that.
  19. [dfire]knight


    Mar 30, 2002
    bend, or
    ground fighting would be your best for self defense. most people dont know it and your chances of winning a fight is by taking it to the ground.
  20. ebozzz

    ebozzz Supporting Member

    May 17, 2001
    That's cool. :) You still need to check out the Silat if you can. It's a sophisticated art and it's one where you could put together some decent skills in a relatively short period of time. There is still enough substance to it for you go a long way with it.

    I'm still partial to Bagua, Xing Yi and Tai Chi. Each one of them is a wonderful art that I feel would give you everything that you are looking for, especially if you have patience. ;) Bagua & Xing Yi would be the more dynamic of the three but Chen style Tai Chi is pretty dynamic also.

    It's not a kick/punch art but that doesn't mean that it can't be effective as a self defense medium. Have you ever seen any Steven Seagal movies? He's an Aikido practitioner. If you take away the puches or kicks that you see him do on screen, which I feel are mostly for entertainment value, you can probably get an idea of what Aikido is like. Aikido's founder took a trip to China. It's believed that Bagua, Xing Yi and Tai Chi influenced his art.

    True. As I mentioned earlier, most authentic Chinese styles would include grappling and training in many other forms of combat. Silat/Kuntao would also have a lot ground techniques.

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