Krav Maga (Hebrew: קרב מגע, IPA: /krɑːv mə’gɑː/, Hebrew IPA: ['kʁav ˌma'ga], lit. “contact combat” or “close combat”) is an eclectic hand-to-hand combat system developed in Israel. Principally designed by Imi Lichtenfeld as a means for self-defense from Nazi youth in Czechoslovakia during the Second World War, it matured as a fighting system with the Hagana during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. It has since been refined for both civilian and military applications. Unlike most martial arts, Krav Maga is essentially a survival skill. Its philosophy emphasizes threat neutralization, simultaneous defensive and offensive manouvres, and aggressive endurance in a ‘him-or-me’ context. Krav Maga is still used by the IDF and several closely related variations have been developed and adopted by law enforcement, Mossad, FBI and the US military. There are several organisations teaching variations of Krav Maga internationally including Commando Krav Maga, Krav Maga World Wide, International Krav Maga Foundation and Israeli Krav Maga Association.
Krav Maga was developed in Hungary and Czechoslovakia in the 1930s by Imi Lichtenfeld, also known as Imi Sde-Or. (Sde-Or – “Light Field” – a calque of his surname into Hebrew). Imi (Imerich) Lichtenfeld, was born in Budapest on 25th of June 1910 to a Jewish family. Imi spent his youth in Bratislava (Presburg).
He began training when he was 10 years old. Imi earned the junior boxing and wrestling titles for the Slovak team, which was the basis for his fighting system. He first taught his fighting system in Bratislava in order to help protect the local Jewish community from Nazi militia. Upon arriving in the British Mandate of Palestine, Imi began teaching Kapap to the Haganah, the Jewish underground army.
With the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, Imi became the Chief Instructor of Physical Fitness and Krav Maga at the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) School of Combat Fitness. He served in the IDF for 15 years, during which time he continued to develop and refine his hand-to-hand combat method. In 1978, Imi founded the non-profit Israeli Krav Maga Association with several senior instructors to promote krav maga throughout the world. After Imi’s retirement in 1964 as the military’s chief instructor of physical training and self-defense, he focused on adapting his system to provide both professional security agencies and ordinary civilians – men, women, and children – with solutions to avoid and/or end a violent encounter. The IKMA sponsors worldwide programs and courses are available at the International Training Headquarters in Hamilton, New Jersey and the Association’s Israeli main training facility in Netanya, Israel.
Prior to 1980, all experts in Krav Maga lived in Israel and trained under the Israeli Krav Maga Association. That year marks the beginning of contact between Israeli Krav Maga experts and interested students in the United States. In 1981, a group of six Krav Maga instructors traveled to the US to demonstrate their system, primarily to local Jewish Community Centers. The New York Field Office of the FBI and the FBI’s Main Training Center at Quantico, Virginia saw it and expressed interest. The result was a visit by 22 people from the US to Israel in the summer of 1981 to attend a basic Krav Maga instructor course. The graduates from this course returned to the US and began to establish training facilities in their local areas. Additional students traveled to Israel in 1984 and again in 1986 to become instructors. At the same time, instructors from Israel continued to visit the US. Law Enforcement training in the US began in 1985.
One thing that is immediately recognizable about Krav Maga, is how strikingly similar the principles are to Jeet Kune Do. Ironically, both arts were essentially developed around the same time, in completely different parts of the world, with no recognizable or traceable connection between the two individuals who created the arts, Imi Lichtenfeld and Bruce Lee.
Unlike in martial art sports, there are no hard-and-fast rules for Krav Maga fighting, and no built-in distinctions in training between men and women. It has no sporting federation, and there are no official uniforms or attire, although some organizations, internally, do recognize progress through training with rank badges and different levels.
Techniques generally focus on training combatants in conditions approximating real-life scenarios. Krav Maga trains combatants for situations where losing would be potentially fatal. Its attack and defense maneuvers aim to neutralize the threat and facilitate rapid and safe escape. These include crippling attacks to vulnerable body parts, and various efficient and often brutal strikes. The improvised use of any available aids is encouraged, and maximizing personal safety in a fight is emphasized.
While no limits are placed on techniques to be used in life-threatening situations, during training the legal need to minimize damage is generally stressed (at least in civilian contexts) and instructors are required to demonstrate how to moderate the techniques to suit the seriousness of the circumstances.
Krav Maga basic training emphasizes the following:
Krav Maga trainees learn to deal first with the immediate threat and then prevent further attacks, if necessary by neutralizing the attacker. Actions are carried out in a methodical manner. In order to avoid a dangerous situation some circumstances may call for anticipatory action.
Krav maga is based on our most primitive and natural instincts. In developing the self-defense system, survival in any situation was foremost in Imi’s mind. Accordingly, krav maga relies on a person’s natural instincts and reflexes for self-defense. Awareness and mental conditioning are integral to krav maga training.
Krav maga’s philosophy is never to do more than necessary, but to react with speed, economy of motion, and the appropriate measure of force. If a situation is dire, the defender must do whatever is necessary to overcome the threat. This may include multiple strikes to the groin, throat, and kidneys, a finger planted into an eye, shouting into an attacker’s ear, a head butt, breaking an attacker’s elbow using an armbar variation, severing an attacker’s Achilles tendon using an ankle lock, a bite to the neck, or choking an assailant into unconsciousness.
Speed is paramount and one is taught to strike instinctively at the human body’s vulnerable parts. Krav maga is dynamic and constantly evolves as situations require.
The Israeli krav maga system is one of the most effective, practical, and holistic fighting systems in the world. Krav maga will build your body, mind, and soul. Imi designed krav maga to benefit people of all shapes, sizes, and physical abilities regardless of age.
You may be your first and last line of defense in an increasingly violent world. You must be prepared to whatever it takes to survive. Most important, there are no rules on the street.
Krav Maga breaks down it’s essential concepts into the “6 pillars” which are as follows:
Simultaneous Defense and Attack
Combine your defense and offense into one complete strategy.
Focus on Vulnerable Soft Tissue
Counter-attack the vulnerable areas of your opponent’s body including the groin, eyes, and throat.
Retzev Continuous Combat Motion
Move fast, continuously, seamlessly and determinedly to overwhelm your attacker giving him no time to react.
A Building Block Learning Process
Learn one elemental technique at a time and then build on it over time.
Be both decisive and quick in responding to a violent encounter. Do whatever is necessary to overcome a dangerous threat.
If possible, use subduing techniques to de-escalate a situation quickly.
Here is some video of author and Head of the US IKMA, David Kahn using some Krav Maga techniques:
Krav Maga has borrowed many techniques from other martial arts and includes elements from boxing, Muay Thai, Aikido, Judo, and Jujutsu although the training is often quite different. Unlike the set routines and choreographed moves in martial arts, Krav Maga teaches realistic fighting and self-defence even in conditions of stress and exhaustion. Typical training often includes exercises simulating fighting against several opponents, while protecting another, with the use of only one arm, while dizzy, and against armed opponents. Krav Maga training programs involve rapid learning, with offensive and defensive techniques introduced from the first lesson and retzev (pronounced ret-zef and meaning “continuous motion or momentum”) playing an important part in both training and maneuvers.
Most instructors emphasize two training rules: (1) there are no rules in a fight and (2) partner preservation – one must not injure oneself or one’s partner when training.
Basic training is an intense mixed aerobic and anaerobic workout, relying heavily on the use of protective pads. In striking this helps the trainee practice his maneuvers at full strength, while the holder learns a little of the impact they would feel when getting hit. It can be almost as taxing to hold a pad as to practice against one. Students will also wear head guards, mouthpieces, groin protectors, shin and forearm guards, etc. during practice of attack/defense techniques, so that a realistic level of violence may be attained without risk of injury. Some schools incorporate “Strike and Fight,” which consists of full-contact sparring intended to familiarize the student with the stresses of a violent situation.
Training within extreme acoustic, visual, and verbal scenarios prepares students to ignore peripheral distractions and focus on the needs of the situation. Other training methods to increase realism might include blindfolding or exercising trainees to near exhaustion before dealing with a simulated attack as well as training outdoors on a variety of surfaces and restrictive situations.
Training will usually also cover situational awareness, to develop an understanding of one’s surroundings and potentially threatening circumstances before an attack is launched. It may also cover “Self Protection”: ways to deal with potentially violent situations, and physical and verbal methods to avoid violence whenever possible.
A typical session in a civilian school is about an hour long and mixes conditioning with self-defense training. As levels increase, the instructors focus a little more on complicated and less common types of attacks, such as knife attacks, hostage situations and defense under extreme duress.
Classes usually feature a very intense drill to raise the heart rates. This is often done at the beginning of the lesson. Then, after stretching, the instructor will teach two or three self-defense techniques. Techniques will either be combative (punches, hammer-fists, elbows, and knees) or grappling (breaking out of chokes or wrist-grabs, getting out from under an opponent while on one’s back). The class usually moves to a drill that combines the techniques just taught with an aerobic technique. Lastly, there is the final drill intended to burn out the students. Depending on the class, this drill may be at the very beginning or at the end of the class.
A typical class will start with some warmup exercises followed by a group stretch. Classes will show several techniques or drills and students are encourage to go at full speed or near full speed to simulate what may happen in an actual attack. Some schools also use practice weapons to simulate an attack with a weapon such as a knife or gun. Since the concept behind Krav Maga is very militant while at the same time creating a family enviroment among the trainees, most classes end with a hand shake line were every individual provides a sign of respect and thanks for the training to their instructors and partners.
Imi emphasized good citizenship and a strong sense of morality. The following pillars of Imi’s system help summarize his teachings.
Treat your fellow-citizens with respect and obey the law. Imi sought to instill “a sense of self worth.”
Train properly to avoid injury
Do not injure your partner or yourself by training haphazardly or over aggressively.
Do not show-off your skills or provoke others to test your mettle. Act courteously toward others. As Imi said, “The most necessary thing, is to educate you– and that is the hardest thing–to be humble. You must be so humble that you don’t want to show him that you’re better than him. That is one of the most necessary things for pupils. If a pupil tells me, ‘I fought him and beat him,’ it’s no good.”
Avoid or deescalate a potential violent situation whenever possible. When asked about a hypothetical confrontation that could be avoided, Imi responded, “Know what I told you – to be humble. I don’t want to get beaten. I don’t want to beat him. My purpose in learning krav maga is not to get hurt. If you beat him, you want to show him you can beat him. If you turn away, you have enough confidence.”
Do not use unnecessary force
Respond to a threat or attack with only the necessary amount of force to neutralize the attack. Imi underscored, “That is most necessary and difficult thing in krav maga – that I must be so good that I don’t must kill.”
Although most Krav Maga schools do not have uniforms that are consistant with a typical martial arts school, they do have a unique ranking system, where belts are provided to signify rank. The belt ranking system is as follows: Yellow, Orange, Green, Blue, Brown, Black (dans 1 – 5), Red/White (dans 6 – 7), Red (dan 8). Moving from one level to another requires the mastery of specific techniques and skills as well as a specific amount of time training in Krav Maga, under a certified instructor. A rank is granted after passing examinations conducted by trained professional examiners.
Sources: Wikipedia.com, IsraeliKrav.com, & KravMagaIsraeli.com
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a martial art and combat sport that focuses on grappling and especially ground fighting. It is a derivative of early 20th century Kodokan Judo, which was itself then a recently-developed system (founded in 1882), based on multiple schools (or Ryu) of Japanese jujutsu.
Like judo, it promotes the principle that smaller, weaker person can successfully defend themselves against a bigger, stronger assailant using leverage and proper technique; applying joint-locks and chokeholds to defeat them. BJJ can be trained for self defense, sport grappling tournaments (gi and no-gi) and mixed martial arts (MMA) competition. Sparring (commonly referred to as ‘rolling’) and live drilling play a major role in training, and a premium is placed on performance, especially in competition.
Jiu-Jitsu itself was developed in Japan during the Feudal period. It was originally an art designed for warfare, but after the abolition of the Feudal system in Japan, certain modifications needed to be made to the art in order to make it suitable for practice. During Feudal times, Jiu-Jitsu was also known as Yawara, Hakuda, Kogusoko, and an assortment of other names. The earliest recorded use of the word “jiu-jitsu” happens in 1532 and is coined by the Takenouchi Ryu (school). The history of the art during this time is uncertain because teachers kept everything secret to give their art a feeling of importance and then would change the stories of their art to suit their own needs.
After the Feudal period in Japan ended (Jiu-jitsu was no longer needed on the battlefield), a way to practice the art realistically was needed, which is why Jigoro Kano (1860–1938), a practitioner of Jiu-Jitsu, developed his own system of Jiu-Jitsu in the late 1800′s, called Judo. Judo was helpful because it allowed practitioners the ability to try the art safely and realistically at the same time. Since its inception, judo was separated from jujutsu in its goals, philosophy, and training regime. Although there was great rivalry among jujutsu teachers, this was more than just Kano’s ambition to clearly individualize his art. To Kano, judo wasn’t solely a martial art: it was also a sport, a method for promoting physical fitness and building character in young people, and, ultimately, a way (Do) of life. To a very large extent, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has also encompassed these philosophies.
The art of Jiu Jitsu offically began with Mitsuyo Maeda (aka Conde Koma, or Count Combat in English), an expert Japanese judoka and member of the Kodokan. Maeda was one of five of the Kodokan’s top groundwork experts that Judo’s founder Kano Jigoro sent overseas to spread his art to the world. Maeda left Japan in 1904 and visited a number of countries giving “jiu-do” demonstrations and accepting challenges from wrestlers, boxers, savate fighters and various other martial artists before eventually arriving in Brazil on November 14, 1914.
It wasn’t until the sport art of Judo and the combat art of Jiu-Jitsu were introduced to the Gracie family in Brazil that the real art of Jiu-Jitsu would be brought to life again. Japanese Jiu-Jitsu (practiced as Judo) was introduced to the Gracie family in Brazil by Maeda.
Maeda met an influential businessman named Gastão Gracie who helped him get established. In 1916, his son Carlos Gracie, still a 14 year-old boy, watched a demonstration by Maeda at the Teatro da Paz and decided to learn the art. Maeda accepted Carlos as a student, and Carlos went on to become a great exponent of the art and ultimately, with his younger brother Hélio Gracie became the founder of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, modern Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
In 1921, Gastão Gracie and his family moved to Rio de Janeiro. Carlos, then 17 years old, passed Maeda’s teachings on to his brothers Osvaldo, Gastão and Jorge. Hélio was too young and sick at that time to learn the art, and due to medical imposition was prohibited to take part in the training sessions. Despite that, Hélio learned from watching his brothers. He eventually overcame his health problems and is now considered by many as the founder of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (though others, such as Carlson Gracie, have pointed to Carlos as the founder of the art).
Hélio competed in several submission judo competitions which mostly ended in a draw. One defeat (in Brazil in 1951) was by visiting Japanese judoka Masahiko Kimura, whose surname the Gracies gave to the arm lock used to defeat Hélio.
The Gracie family continued to develop the system throughout the 20th century, often fighting vale tudo matches (precursors to modern MMA), during which it increased its focus on ground fighting and refined its techniques.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu emphasizes ground fighting techniques and submission holds involving joint-locks and chokeholds also found in numerous other arts with or without ground fighting emphasis. The premise is that most of the advantage of a larger, stronger opponent comes from superior reach and more powerful strikes, both of which are somewhat negated when grappling on the ground.
BJJ permits a wide variety of techniques to take the fight to the ground after taking a grip. Once the opponent is on the ground, a number of maneuvers (and counter-maneuvers) are available to manipulate the opponent into a suitable position for the application of a submission technique. Achieving a dominant position on the ground is one of the hallmarks of the BJJ style, and includes effective use of the guard position to defend oneself from bottom, and passing the guard to dominate from top position with side control, mount, and back mount positions. This system of maneuvering and manipulation can be likened to a form of kinetic chess when utilized by two experienced practitioners. A submission hold is the equivalent of checkmate in the sport. However, it is possible for a combat situation to continue even after a proper submission is performed.
The majority of submission holds can be grouped into two broad categories: joint locks and chokes. Joint locks typically involve isolating an opponent’s limb and creating a lever with the body position which will force the joint to move past its normal range of motion. Pressure is increased in a controlled manner and released if the opponent cannot escape the hold and signals defeat by submitting. Opponents can indicate submission verbally or they can tap out (i.e. tap the opponent, the mat, or even themselves, several times.) A choke hold, disrupting the blood supply to the brain, can cause unconsciousness if the opponent does not submit soon enough.
While many joint locks are permitted, most competitions ban or restrict some or all joint locks involving the knees, ankles, and spine. The reason for this is that the angles of manipulation required to cause pain are nearly the same as those that would cause serious injury. Joint locks that require a twisting motion of the knee (called twisting knee locks or twisting knee bars, or techniques such as heel hooks, and toe holds) are usually banned in competitions because successfully completing the move nearly always results in permanent damage that requires surgery. Similarly, joint manipulations of the spine are typically barred due to the inherent danger of crushing or mis-aligning cervical vertebrae. Leglocks are allowed in varying degrees depending on skill level.
Chokes and strangles (commonly but somewhat incorrectly referred to as “air chokes” and “blood chokes” respectively) are a common form of submission. Chokes involve constriction of the windpipe (causing asphyxia.) Strangles involve constriction of the carotid artery (causing ischemia.)
Air chokes are less efficient than strangles and may result in damage to the opponent’s trachea, sometimes even resulting in death. By contrast, blood chokes (strangulations) cut the flow of blood to the opponent’s brain, causing a rapid loss of consciousness without damaging any internal structures.
The typical belts or ranks in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu are as follows: White Belt, Blut Belt, Purple Belt, Brown Belt, Black Belt, Red Belt (Mastery Level). Some schools use a stripe system for each belt level, indicating progress through that belt. However, not all schools award stripes, or award them consistently, so the number of stripes a person has is not necessarily a good measure of their accomplishments or time in training. When they are used, it is standard for a student to receive four stripes before being promoted to the next rank.
Black belts can receive degrees, up to 9th degree, for as long as they train or teach the art. At 7th degree, the black belt is replaced by an alternately red and black belt. At 9th and 10th degree, the belt becomes solid red. Only the founding Gracie Brothers Helio, Carlos, and their brothers will ever have the 10th degree red belt. The Gracie family members who are 9th degrees belt holders are Carlson Gracie, Reylson Gracie, Relson Gracie, Reyson Gracie, and Rorion Gracie.
The standards for grading and belt promotions vary between schools, but the widely accepted measures of a person’s skill and rank in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu are:
Technical knowledge is judged by the number of techniques a person can perform, and the level of skill with which he performs them in sparring and competition. This allows for smaller and older practitioners to be recognized for their knowledge though they may not be the strongest fighters in the school.
BJJ differs in some aspects from other martial arts in the criteria for grade promotion, which is almost exclusively based on practical expertise in randori (free sparring, or rolling) and championship results. Apparently in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, less emphasis is given to theoretical and background knowledge. Rarely is any formal test undertaken for the grading, which is based mainly in observation at every-day practice sessions.
There is a vast difference in how often belt progression takes place, and the requirements for the progression. A blue belt will typically take 1-3 years to earn, depending on the amount of time the student puts in, and how quickly they learn. A purple belt can take 3-6 years to earn. More traditional schools and especially Gracie-affiliated schools believe that black belt cannot be achieved in under 8 to 10 years, while some schools allow students to achieve black belt more quickly.
BJJ in Mixed Martial Arts
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has quickly become one of the most popular arts used to compete in the world of Mixed Martial Arts. This is largely due to the success of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. BJJ has been entrenched in the UFC dating back to the very first event, UFC 1.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (later renamed UFC 1: The Beginning) was the first mixed martial arts (MMA) event held by the Ultimate Fighting Championship, occurring at the McNichols Sports Arena in Denver, Colorado, on November 12, 1993.
UFC 1 used an eight-man tournament format, with the winner receiving $50,000. The tournament had no weight classes or weight limits. The matches had 5 minute time limits with unlimited rounds; therefore no judges were necessary. Competitors only won by submission, knockout, or throwing in the towel. Royce Gracie won the competition ultimately beating 3 opponents including the famed MMA star Ken Shamrock.
Sources: Wikipedia.org, Shenwu.com, Jiu-Jitsu.net
Absolute Nutrition NoPHEDRA 80 caps
“Mild Stimulant NoPHEDRA is the answer for the customer who does not want to use a product containing ephedra. Because NoPHEDRA is a mild stimulant, it will never have the side effects of ephedra products.NoPHEDRA contains a special blend of herbs id…Read More
Absolute Nutrition LipoSlim System 3 bottles
“NoPhedra, F-Block and C-Block The Liposlim System contains 3 top supplements: NoPhedra, F-Block and C-Block. These 3 supplements work synergistically together to create a unique weight loss environment for your body. When combined with a healthy die…Read More
Combat Submission Wrestling is a reformulated Shoot wrestling curriculum as taught by Erik Paulson, world light heavyweight champion of Shooto. The curriculum is a three dimensional martial artform involving striking, takedowns and submissions. The base of CSW is shoot wrestling, which was introduced to Paulson by Yorinaga Nakamura, an instructor from Japan.
Starting with Judo in 1974, Erik Paulson has trained in many disciplines including Freestyle and Greco-Roman Wrestling, Tae Kwon Do, Boxing, Jeet Kune Do, Filipino Kali/Eskrima, Catch Wrestling and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He has studied with 40 different teachers over his 30 years of training including Rick Faye, Greg Nelson, Charlie Gergan, Yorinaga Nakamura, Larry Hartsell, and the legendary Dan Inosanto, who claims Erik is one of the world’s most dynamic grapplers.
Erik Paulson’s Combat Submission Wrestling is said to be most dominant Mixed Martial Arts training system available. CSW is a blend of STX Kickboxing, Jun Fan Kickboxing, Muay Thai, French Savate, Western Boxing, Greco-Roman and Freestyle Wrestling, Shooto, Filipino Dumog, Judo and Brazilian Jiu -Jitsu. It encompasses three areas: Kickboxing, Clinching and Grappling which focuses on Submission Wrestling, Submission Fighting and Self-Defense.
Erik Paulson currently owns and runs the CSW Training Center in Fullerton, CA where he trains MMA fighters such as Josh Barnett, Ken Shamrock, Cub Swanson, Ginelle Marquez, and is closely affiliated with Sean Sherk and Brock Lesnar of the Minnesota Martial Arts Academy. Erik Paulson is the three time World Shooto Champion, the only American to ever achieve this.
History of Shoot Wrestling
Shoot wrestling is a general term that describes a range of hybrid fighting systems originating in Japan in the late 1970s, in close association with Japanese professional wrestling. Shoot wrestling has several sub-disciplines eg. Shootfighting, Shooto, Pancrase, RINGS submission fighting, Shoot boxing and Combat Submission Wrestling.
The term “shoot” refers to the fact that the techniques are applied for real, as opposed to a “work”. The shoot wrestling techniques are often applied in shoot-style professional wrestling matches, which feature predetermined outcomes, but with much technique applied in a stiff or full contact manner.
History of shoot wrestling and shoot-style wrestlingHistorically, shoot wrestling has been influenced by many martial arts such as catch wrestling, freestyle wrestling, Greco-Roman wrestling and Pehlwani/Kushti in the beginning and Karate, Muay thai and Judo in the final stages. The strongest influence on shoot wrestling though, has been that of catch wrestling.
In 1984 many wrestlers became interested in promoting an even more realistic style of professional wrestling and thus the Universal Wrestling Federation was formed. The UWF was a professional wrestling organisation, which promoted the strong shoot style/strong style wrestling. This essentially meant that it employed effective and practical martial arts moves, which were applied with force. The organization even hosted some real mixed martial arts matches, where the wrestlers were able to test their shoot wrestling techniques against other styles.
After the breakup of the original Universal Wrestling Federation, shoot wrestling branched into several disciplines. Each of the disciplines were also strongly influenced by other martial arts. Shoot wrestling branched into several sub disciplines after the breakup of the original Universal Wrestling Federation. The main forms are listed below.
* Yoshiaki Fujiwara’s students Masakatsu Funaki and Minoru Suzuki formed Pancrase, which is also a fighting style under shoot wrestling.
* Another Yoshiaki Fujiwara student Bart Vale formed Shootfighting.
* Tiger Mask Sayama’s style of shoot wrestling also includes Muay thai kicks and is called Shooto.
* Akira Maeda’s version of shoot wrestling emphasises on submissions and is known as RINGS submission fighting.
* Kickboxer Caesar Takeshi formed Shoot boxing with standing submission aspect influenced by catch wrestling and shoot wrestling.
* Erik Paulson modified Shooto to form Combat Submission Wrestling.
* World renowed gyms like the Lion’s Den, Takada Dojo and Shamrock Martial Arts Academy propogate shoot wrestling based styles of martial arts.
Sources: Erikpaulson.com, Martial-Art-Concepts.co.uk
Four hundred years ago, there lived a man named Yim Say Koan who had trained for many years in the Shaolin Temple. His bean cake store was the means by which he supported his only child, a girl, named Yim Wing Chun. Mr. Yim started his daughter training in the martial arts under his tutelage while she was still very young. As she reached her mid-teens, she began attracting many suitors. One was a gangster who tried to force Wing Chun into marriage. In order to prevent this, Mr. Yim sent his daughter to Pot Hok Kwoon, a temple where she could continue her boxing training under the nun, Ng Mui.
One morning while walking, Ng Mui was reflecting on her teaching at the temple. She was not totally satisfied with the low horse stance and power-oriented punches and felt they were not particularly suited for a woman. Lost in thought, she was startled by the noise of an ongoing battle between a snake and a crane. She was particularly impressed by the crane’s ability to simultaneously block the snake’s attack and retaliate.
Later, Ng Mui began to modify the methods she already knew. She incorporated some of the snake and crane movements and altered the horse stance and punch. From this she developed three forms: Sil Num Tao, Chum Kiu, and Bil Gee. She also instituted Chi Sao training. She called the new system Wing Chun, after her first disciple Yim Wing Chun.
The History of Yip Man
Most forms of Wing Chun Kung Fu that are practiced and taught today come from the Yip Man Lineage. Some of the more popular practicitioners in the Yip Man lineage include: Bruce Lee, William Cheung, Francis Fong and Jason Lau. In fact, 90 percent of Wing Chun schools in the world can be traced directly to his efforts.
Yip Man was born in October 1893 in the town of Fatshan in Namhoi County, Kwangtung Province, in Southern China. He was the son of a wealthy merchant named Yip Oi Doh and his wife, Madame Ng. The Yip family lived in some 20 old-style Chinese estates which lined both sides of Happiness and Scholarship Avenue. On one side of the avenue, in the centre of the estates, stood the Yip ancestral temple. Inside the temple, the Yip family permitted Wing Chun master Chan Wah Shun to live and teach a small group of disciples, since Chan’s local reputation as a fighter discouraged thieves and highwaymen from attacking the family business.
When Yip was about nine years old he approached Chan and asked to be accepted as a student. Chan did not take the boy’s request seriously. To spare the boy’s feelings, Chan diplomatically told Yip that he would admit him as a student as soon as he could pay the tuition price of three taels of silver. Chan did not think that a nine year old boy, from a wealthy family or not, could produce that much money anytime in the near future. When Yip Man returned the next day, he went up to Chan Wah Shun with 300 pieces of silver.
Chan Wah Shun did not simply accept the money. Instead he thought that this little kid had just pinched 300 pieces of silver to give to him. So he took Yip Man to his parents to try to find out where the silver had come from.
They soon realized that the 300 pieces of silver were his whole life savings. Once they saw that this boy had such a strong desire to learn Wing Chun that he’d given away all his money, his parents agreed to let him study. And Chan Wah Shun accepted him.
Wing Chun incorporates 3 main principles into it’s design, including: Practicality, Efficiency, and Economy of Movement. Wing Chun techniques emphasize practicality and efficiency to maintain its ideals on effectiveness. Strikes are intended to injure or disrupt the target. Efficiency in Wing Chun is based on the concept that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Likewise its primary targets all lie along the “centerline” of one’s opponent.
Wing Chun believes in using the least amount of required force in any fighting situation. It believes properly timed positioning and movements can and should be used to defeat an opponent. This is achieved through balance, body structure and relaxation. The Chinese saying “4 taels to move 1000 catties” (referring to an old Chinese measurement system) is appropriate here in describing how a small amount of force, correctly applied, can deflect a powerful attack.
Wing Chun uses deflection and counter-attack in the same motion or will intercept the opponent to nullify an attack, rather than blocking then attacking in two separate motions. Further on interception the punch can act as a block as a consequence of the structure and the position of the arm traveling along its triangular “power-line” pathway to the opponent’s “Core”. This means that the opponent’s attack is automatically deflected by the arm-structure of the Wing Chun practitioner as the counter-punch is delivered.
Most Wing Chun attacks take the straightest possible path to the target (usually a straight line) to break the opponent’s structure. Wing Chun theory focuses on the opponent’s centerline, an imaginary vertical line bisecting the opponent’s vitals (throat, heart, stomach, groin). The Wing Chun punch, for example, is delivered centrally from the practitioner’s chest rather than diagonally from the shoulders in the first two forms. This helps teach the centerline concept. In the later forms, the punch is delivered diagonally from the shoulder to the centerline. This is because the distance is shorter than bringing the hand from the shoulder, to the center of the chest, and then down the centerline at the opponent.
In Wing Chun training, several key techniques are used including Chi Sao, Forms, the Wooden Dummy and Butterfly Swords. The Muk Yan Jong form is performed against a “wooden dummy”, a thick wooden post with three arms and a leg mounted on a slightly springy frame representing a stationary human opponent. Although representative of a human opponent, the dummy is not a physical representation of a human, but an energetic one. Wooden dummy practice aims to refine a practitioner’s understanding of angles, positions, and footwork, and to develop full body power. It is here that the open hand forms are pieced together and understood as a whole.
Both the Way Yan (Weng Chun) and Nguyễn Tế-Công branches use different curricula of empty hand forms. The Tam Yeung and Fung Sang lineages both trace their origins to Leung Jan’s retirement to his native village of Gu Lao, where he taught a curriculum of San Sik.
The Siu Lien Tao (Little First Training) of Cho Ga Wing Chun is one long form that includes movements that are comparative to a combination of Siu Nim Tao, Chum Kiu, and Biu Jee of other families. The other major forms of the style are Sui Da (“Random Striking”), Chui Da (“Chase Striking”), Fa Kuen (“Variegated Fist”), Jin Jeung (“Arrow Palm”), Jin Kuen (“Arrow Fist”), Joy Kuen (“Drunken Fist”), Sup Saam Sao (“Thirteen Hands”), and Chi Sao Lung (“Sticking Hands Set”).
Butterfly swords are used in several Chinese martial arts, notably Wing Chun. In Wing Chun, one notable aspect of butterfly sword combat is that its principles are the basis for all other weaponry. In theory, any object that can be held in the hands of a Wing Chun practitioner will follow the same basic principles of movement as the butterfly swords. This is because the use of butterfly swords is simply an extension of empty-handed combat.
Butterfly swords are regarded by many Chinese martial artists to hold the most versatility and balance of offensive and defensive capabilities of any other Chinese weapon, with many more capabilities than just a weapon.
Chi Sao or “sticking hands”. Term for the principle, and drills used for the development of automatic reflexes upon contact and the idea of “sticking” to the opponent. In Wing Chun this is practiced through two practitioners maintaining contact with each other’s forearms while executing techniques, thereby training each other to sense changes in body mechanics, pressure, momentum and “feel”. This increased sensitivity gained from this drill helps a practitioner attack and counter an opponent’s movements precisely, quickly and with the appropriate technique.
Chi Sao additionally refers to methods of rolling hands drills (Luk Sao). Luk Sao participants push and “roll” their forearms against each other in a single circle while trying to remain relaxed. The aim is to feel forces, test resistances and find defensive gaps. Other branches do a version of this where each of the arms roll in small separate circles. Luk Sao is most notably taught within the Pan Nam branches where both the larger rolling drills and the method where each of the arms roll in small separate circles are taught.
In some lineages (such as the Yip Man and Jiu Wan branches), Chi Sao drills begin with one-armed sets called Dan Chi Sao which help the novice student to get the feel of the exercise, each practitioner uses one hand from the same side as they face each other. Chi Sao is a sensitivity drill to obtain specific responses, it should not be confused with sparring/fighting, though it can be practiced or expressed in a combat form.
Sources: Wikipedia, FrancisFongAcademy.com, CheungsWingChun.com
Jeet Kune Do (JKD) is the name Bruce Lee gave to his combat system and philosophy in 1967. Originally, when Sijo Bruce Lee began researching various fighting styles, he gave his martial art his own name of Jun Fan Gung Fu. However not wanting to create another style that would share the limitations that all styles have, he instead gave us the process that created it. Essentially, The concept of combining the elements of multiple martial arts was pioneered and popularized by Bruce Lee in the late 1960s to early 1970s via his system and philosophy which he called Jeet Kune Do. Lee believed that “the best fighter is not a Boxer, Karate or Judo man. The best fighter is someone who can adapt to any style.”
With Wing Chun at the core of his system, Bruce Lee incorporated a modification of various techniques from Northern Praying Mantis, Southern Praying Mantis, Choy Li Fut, Eagle Claw, Western Boxing, Savate, Muay Thai, Wrestling, Fencing, Aikido, Judo, Jiu Jitsu, and some of the more refined kicks of the Northern & Southern Chinese styles. Innovative and radically ahead of his time in his training and teaching methodology, Bruce Lee developed a martial system and fighting strategy that has lost none of its effectiveness over time.
JKD as it survives today – if one wants to view it “refined” as a product, not a process – is what was left at the time of Bruce Lee’s death. It is the result of the life-long martial arts development process Lee went through. Bruce Lee stated that his concept is not an “adding to” of more and more things on top of each other to form a system, but rather, a winnowing out. The metaphor Lee borrowed from Chan Buddhism was of constantly filling a cup with water, and then emptying it, used for describing Lee’s philosophy of “casting off what is useless”. He also used the sculptor’s mentality of beginning with a lump of clay and hacking away at the “unessentials”; the end result was what he considered to be the bare combat essentials, or JKD.
One of the theories of JKD is that a fighter should do whatever is necessary to defend himself, regardless of where the techniques come from. One of Lee’s goals in Jeet Kune Do was to break down what he claimed were limiting factors in the training of the traditional styles, and seek a fighting thesis which he believed could only be found within the reality of a fight. Jeet Kune Do is currently seen as the genesis of the modern state of hybrid martial arts.
Sijo Bruce Lee incorporated several key principles into Jeet Kune Do including: 4 Ranges of Combat, 5 Ways of Attack, Economy of Motion, Centerline Principle, Absorbing What Is Useful and “Be Like Water”. He felt these were universal combat truths that were self evident and would lead to combat success if followed. The “4 Combat Ranges” in particular are what he felt were instrumental in becoming a “total” martial artist.
JKD practitioners also subscribe to the notion that the best defense is a strong offense, hence the principle of “Intercepting”. Lee believed that in order for an opponent to attack someone they had to move towards them. This provided an opportunity to “intercept” that attack or movement. The principle of interception covers more than just intercepting physical attacks. Lee believed that many non-verbals and telegraphs (subtle movements that an opponent is unaware of) could be perceived or “intercepted” and thus be used to one’s advantage.
Jeet Kune Do students train in the 4 ranges of combat which include: Kicking, Punching, Trappling and Grappling. According to Lee, this range of training serves to differentiate JKD from other martial arts. Lee stated that most but not all traditional martial systems specialize in training at one or two ranges. As a historical note, the ranges in JKD have evolved over time. Initially the ranges were categorized as short or close, medium, and long range.
Absorbing what is useful is perhaps the least understood and most confusing principle in Jeet Kune Do. This principle does not mean choosing, collecting, compiling, or assembling the best techniques from various diverse styles and slapping them together to form a new style. To do so is to miss the point of Jeet Kune Do. Absorbing what is useful is about immersing oneself in style or system and learning and grasping its essence. It is only through a holistic approach that one learns techniques in their proper context. Styles provide more than just mere techniques; they offer training methods, theories, and mental attitudes to name a few. Learning all of these factors allows a student to experience a system (in what Lee would call) its “totality”. It is only through its totality that one can “absorb what is useful”. Applying what is learned in real combat training situations is what allows the student to figure what works or doesn’t work for oneself. It is at this point that one can “discard that which is useless”. The critical point of this principle is that the choice of what to keep is based on personal experimentation with various opponents over time. It is not based on how a technique may look or feel or how well one can execute it. In the final analysis if the technique is not beneficial in combat it is discarded. Lee believed that only the individual could come to understand what worked for oneself based on critical self analysis and by “honestly expressing oneself; without lying to oneself”.
Although Bruce Lee officially closed his martial arts schools two years before his death, he allowed his curriculum to be taught privately by the 3 students he personally certified as instructors in Jun Fan Gung Fu/ Jeet Kune Do. Those individuals were James Lee, Taky Kimura and Dan Inosanto. Currently only Taky Kimura and Dan Inosanto are alive. Since 1964, Taky Kimura has been the instructor of the Jun Fan Gung Fu Institute of Seattle, while Dan Inosanto teaches The Art and Philosophy of Jeet Kune Do, Filipino Martial Arts, Shoot Wrestling, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai, Silat, Mixed Martial Arts and other arts at his Marina del Rey, California school, the Inosanto Academy of Martial Arts.
Sources: Tao of Jeet Kune Do, Inosanto.com, AndyKimura.com