"Martial arts has changed more in the last 20 years than the 2000 years before it"

Discussion in 'Koryu Bujutsu' started by Christianson, Jun 29, 2014.

  1. Indie12

    Indie12 Valued Member

    Mixed Martial Arts has done alot for the industry. But if you look at the "Kung Fu" haze of the 70's, Karate of the 80's, and Tae Kwon Do of the 90's, those actually gave rise to more people getting into Martial Arts, 10-30 years before Mixed Martial Arts was introduced in 1993.

    Personally, I think Mixed Martial Arts has done more damage to the industry then good. But that's just from my personal experience, personal witnessing, and personal involvement!! :D
  2. Hannibal

    Hannibal Cry HAVOC and let slip the Dogs of War!!! Supporter

    It cleared out a lot of crap - that's a VERY good thing. It also forced people to look honestly at combat - that's even better
  3. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Interesting, could you expand on this statement?
  4. bodyshot

    bodyshot Brown Belt Zanshin Karate

    It did, to be honest. But you gotta try to understand the dynamic of what really happened. It wasn't all mma fault either it was the people who were trying to jump on the band wag on that did most of the damage. For years and years the wrestlers and boxers poked fun at the Tma guys especially at highschool and college level.
    But. Then again TNA guys were already bashing each other and bashing with the hybrid guys anyway.
    Mma didn't hurt things, but it opened some doors to some hurtful people, mainly at the street level'
  5. The Iron Fist

    The Iron Fist Banned Banned

    Indie, if you had said "UFC" instead of "MMA" I might have agreed because I feel UFC (the business) is clearly a monopoly and has ruled the roost and in many ways has ruined not just a lot of good careers but also not necessarily been honest about martial arts or its history (and look are now being sued by several well known fighters for acting like a monopoly). There has been a lot of marketing hype to support "if it's not UFC it's crap" and while I agree UFC has some of the best fighters in the world in there...they are just one relatively young business. By contrast there are fighting associations and competition formats way older and in some cases, more interesting. Heck until UFC these fights were not even in cages, they used to occur in standard rings, with ropes. Boxing is as old as time and in my opinion can sometimes be so much more interesting than watching a UFC fight simply because there is more space for movement, and the class of combat is finer (yes I am a great lover of the "sweet science"). If I watch UFC nowadays, it's not for UFC's sake but to watch specific fighters I like. I don't think UFC is the "end all-be all" of combat sport.

    But MMA in and of itself has not damaged anything, I think it's one of the best "mixing pots" of martial arts since the Shaolin Temple was last burned to the ground (for the dozenth time :) ). Over the last several centuries where else but MMA venues and its predecessors like Vale Tudo can you point to where styles from all over the world came together to compete with limited rules, and everybody no matter what "style" they claim could essentially either prove it or get a big reality check?

    Do you know why I think fighters fought differently in Vale Tudo years ago compared to MMA of the last couple decades? It wasn't becomes "styles" evolved, but because more styles came to the table, and the best fighters were able to see, examine, pick from, and master all the world's best styles. Without MMA, Brazilian judo/jiujutsu would have essentially stayed there. Muay Thai, a jewel of Asian kickboxing, would have remained a relative unknown in the US. These are all sad alternate histories from my point of view as a martial arts lover.
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2015
  6. Langenschwert

    Langenschwert Molon Labe

    Martial Arts haven't changed. The way they are presented to the mainstream has.

    C'mon, boxers used to grapple. That ain't nothing new. Bartitsu was boxing, savate, cane fighting and jujutsu mixed together. JKD is a mixed system. Joachim Meyer left Germany to study "rappier" in Italy and added it to his own style, which was very German. All these arts had public demonstrations and tournaments.

    What MMA gave is a reasonably safe venue for fighters to practice unarmed duels in a reasonably safe manner in a way the general public could enjoy in a broadcast format. That's not really changing martial arts, that's changing the way they are consumed by non-martial artists. It changes the lens through which people first encounter combat sports, and the expectations they have should they choose to train.

    Yet again, we fall victim to the blinders of our own times.

  7. Christianson

    Christianson Valued Member

    Even most koryu bujutsu (to bring us back to the forum ;) ) was frequently syncretic until relatively recently. There are exceptions, and the preferred language often obscures it (the traditional Confucian viewpoint that all wisdom is from the time of the sages leads to claims of antiquity or rediscovery rather than innovation), but there's a well-documented example in the Kashima-Shinryu outlined in Legacies of the Sword by Karl Friday. My feeling is that the conservatism know associated with the field often has to do with the loss of an acceptable (or at least, perceived acceptable) pressure-testing environment.
  8. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Yes and no, I think you have a lot of good points, but I don't think it's purely cosmetic. I don't think that anyone for instance has been so good at taking people down in a full contact fight than GSP say. In the 90's you could take down anyone and nobody in martial arts could sprawl, save for wrestlers, sambo fighters and a few good judokas. Now that level of all round fighting has increased dramatically. Grappling skill in everyone has improved, as has striking. It's came full circle because a karateka pre UFC gets smashed by the first wreser they come up against. Now that same karateka is Stephen Thompson, or Lyoto Machida, knocking people out with the same style. They can only do that because of their grappling skills.

    I can't think of many people who were training from top to bottom regularly, save for a few "fringe" styles and the Gracies. My sinstrutor was, and also Guru Inosanto, but that was it.
  9. Langenschwert

    Langenschwert Molon Labe

    I'll be the first to admit that for the past couple hundred years, martial arts have become specialized. This is due to the collapse of a professional warrior class, by which I mean fighters trained from a very young age. This led to a specialization in martial arts, and the passing of MA prowess from the nobility to commoners. One used to be able to get instruction in knife defence and wrestling in fencing schools, but now it's only foil epee and sabre. Heck, singlestick used to be an Olympic event.

    Once this specialization occurred, a lot of knowledge was lost. Wrestlers only wrestled, boxers only boxed, and fencers only fenced. It used to be common that you would do all three, though boxing was at the bottom of the list, being useless on the battlefield. When Asian MA were exported to the West, this division was already in place. Arts like Bartitsu were the exception, not the rule.

    I remember reading an old manual that was a "wrestling" manual, and it said something like "know that you can strike with fists and feet, elbows and knees". For the life of me I can't remember which one it was. Admittedly, I could be misremembering.

    When MMA became mainstream, it was a revelation to modern practitioners, but would not have been to anyone living from say, 1300-1600, and probably a lot of earlier times as which I don't know as well.

    I'm not denigrating GSP's skills. But it's not like he's the first person to shoot an awesome double-leg while someone tried to knock him out. He's one of the first to do it with millions watching.

    So, while MMA would have been a gob-stopping revelation to people doing MA in the 1980's or even the 1880's, things are different when you go back further in time.

    Fun fact: I actually had copies of "Ninja" magazine in the 80's.
  10. Mangosteen

    Mangosteen Hold strong not

    its also kind of sad that the hammer throw and javelin are olympic events now rather than anything to do with fighting...

    and that scottish backhold wrestling is only seen at highland games (a few clubs started up in Scotland recently teaching backhold)

    and that theres a dirk dance rather than dirk fights. some silly rich folks dance with swords too.

    on the other hand, S&C in martial arts is coming full circle with peoples training sessions looking a lot more like highland games.

Share This Page