Articles

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 29, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

Itemple on side of a mountainf you want to be truly great, find the most difficult path in Budo and never look back.
by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 29, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

Mas Oyama sitting in front of a snowy mountainThe length one will travel to succeed in Budo, is relative to the strength in his inspiration to be Great - A great teacher helps as well.
Aug 9, 2018 | in National Geographic

Mi Zhong

Jet Li’s movie, “Fearless”, is about Huo Yuanjia, the founder of Jing Wu Hue martial arts, also known as Chin Wu.  Huo Yuanjia was the first martial artist in the history of Chinese martial arts to combine several styles into one school.   Before him, all martial artists focused on only one style in their training.  Today, we refer to this combining of several styles, as the Jia Jing Wu Spirit.  The major style in Jing Wu Hue is Mi Zhong Quan.  In this article I will talk about the basic characteristics, history and principles of Mi Zhong Quan.

 

 I grew up in a martial arts family and learned Mi Zhong Quan in my childhood, as part of my training.  Literally translated as “Secret Ancestor”, Mi Zhong Quan is a famous traditional art in the northern style of Shao Lin Kung Fu.  It is very popular throughout China, and because of its great influence, even in southern China, many Jing Wu associations and schools have been established.    The style itself is divided into different and complex branches, each with its own system, flavor, concept, techniques and methods.  From ancient times to the present, traditional masters accepted different parts of the Mi Zhong system.  Because it was practiced in different regions of China, Mi Zhong Quan eventually developed into several branches and styles, each with its own unique fighting characteristics.  All of the Mi Zhong Quan styles belong to the “Long Fist” category, although their frame and structure is mainly Shao Lin External Fist.  

 

  Mi Zhong fist fighting posture is clear, precise, smooth, freely open, firmly rooted and grounded, characterized by strong and heavy punching.  Although appearing to be gentle and light overall, it has sudden, rapid attacks and shooting fists.  It seems to be in a straight direction, but actually goes to eight different directions.  The foot and handwork respond to each other.  Retreating and other actions create a series of attacking and defending forms inherent in this style, as this Quan form changes unexpectedly and surprisingly with jumping feet, lightning dodges, with solid and fixed stances...

Aug 9, 2018 | in Samurai

Japan has a history that dates back thousands of years. Scientists believe the Japanese people descended from many groups that migrated to the islands from other parts of Asia, including China and Korea. As early as 4500 B.C., the Japanese islands were inhabited by fishermen, hunters and farmers. The early culture was known as "Jomon," which meant "cord pattern." That's because the people made pottery decorated with rope-like designs. Scientists believe a caucasian race called the "Ainu" were the first inhabitants of what is now Japan. The Ainu still exist today, mostly in the northernmost islands of Japan called "Hokkaido." The next major Japanese cultural changed occured about 200 B.C. The people were known as "Yayoi." The Yayoi were mostly farmers. Scientists believe the present-day Japanese closely resemble the Yayoi in appearance and language.

War played a central part in the history of Japan. Warring clans controlled much of the country. A chief headed each clan; made up of related families. The chiefs were the ancestors of Japan's imperial family. The wars were usually about "land." Only 20% of the land was fit for farming. The struggle for control of that land eventually gave rise to the Samurai.

One of the important dates in the history of the Japanese warring class is 660 B.C. That's when, according to legend, Jimmu Tenno became head of a confederation of warlike clans. Tenno was known as "The Divine Warrior." He led his people from Kyushu to the Kinki region and conquered the people there. Tenno settled in the area of Yamato. This eventually gave rise to the Yamato dynasty and state. The leaders of Yamato believed themselves to be of divine origin...

Aug 9, 2018 | in Holistic Practices
Sometimes you may feel like your body is beginning to creak and fail you on the outside, but do you ever stop to consider the incredible work that is taking place inside of it? There is so much going on and everything fits together so well, that it's almost impossible to comprehend it. This presentation will remind you that there are miracles going on inside your body every single day.
quote about the body

 

Aug 6, 2018 | in Training Secrets

Zebra Martial arts logo

ring with martial artists training

We shouldn’t have to stress the importance of warming up before training. But there’s too many MMA trainers that do not warm up before training or even before they participate in a match. What these athletes don’t realize is that their bodies are more prone to injury when they don’t complete simple drills.

So, what warm ups should trainers add to their routine?

Here’s a few of the top drills for MMA trainers:

  • Running Patterns - this includes skipping, high knees, butt kicks, among others to get the heart rate up and the body ready for a session.
  • Dynamic Warm Ups - this consists of full range of motion exercises like arm circles, hip circles, lateral lunges and more to get their muscles ready for training.
  • MMA Specific Motions - adding motions like takedowns, striking, and others at a lower intensity and speed can also help the muscles prepare for training at full speed.

Additionally, athletes should incorporate any warm up activities, at a minimum of 5 reps per action, that focus on range of motion, balance and stability as those will help their body prepare for the training session to come.

Aug 6, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

Karate, for centuries was originally practiced in secret, cloaked in classical Okinawan dance. The fighting art was closely guarded by family members, teachers and practitioners. Karate was indigenous to the RyuKyu culture, pervaded by weapons bans throughout the centuries which forced the Okinawans to employ empty or China hand (Te) for self-protection.

The lack of records also lends to the curtain of uncertainty regarding historical events and facts for any given time period of Te history. The bombings during the United States invasion of Japan and Okinawa in the 1940's was the final blow and catalyst to obliterate karate's ancient history. Many records of RyuKyu culture, politics and government were destroyed during the war by the bombs and aftermath of fire. After World War II the RyuKyu language Okinawa Hogen was forbidden to be spoken or taught in the schools. We do have some information regarding martial arts in Okinawa and most historians would agree on the following important overview of facts.

Aug 6, 2018 | in Masters Speak

depiction of martial arts body parts to strike withAs Westerners we can be quite the idiots. We have this belief system "Orientals" are inscrutable, mystical and in contact with the mysteries of the universe which elude us. So in karate we look for the "hidden secrets". When the Okinawan masters say "there are no secrets" we don't accept it, we think "Ahhh. . . they're hiding something!?" If its hidden, its hiding in plain sight.

  If the Okinawan Masters doesn't admit there are secrets we set out to discover them for ourselves. Worse case scenario, the Okinawans acquiesce and reveal the "secrets" i.e. make them up. Then we walk around, obi tied tight, secure in the knowledge we have received transmission of the "secrets" of Okinawan karate-do. Heck even my old (1973) promotion certificates states "This is to certify that the above named person has learned Karate-Do secrets of karate training…"

  Somehow this belief in undiscovered secrets has worked it's way into our dojo training. Not only that but it has colored that training and not in a very helpful way.

  Take the Naihanchi katas. Most American Masters still teach the Naihanchis have no actual bunkai applications. Yet martial arts history researchers now know the Naihanchis are taken from the Chinese Niafunchin forms which do have bunkai as it was originally a Chinese grappling kata.

Aug 6, 2018 | in Masters Speak

Gogen YamaguchiSome readers may have seen a movie which came out a few years ago (1976), entitled "Way of the Sword." It was only a short film, a supporting feature, but it was about the traditional Japanese budo. Various martial arts were shown such as aikido, kendo, and kusarigama but the most intriguing part was the short section on karate, because this featured Gogen Yamaguchi, the headmaster of the Japan Karate-do Goju-kai (Goju Association).

Gogen Yamaguchi was shown sitting in front of a crystal ball. He performed various mudras (mystic hand movements) in the direction of the crystal ball, while doing special breathing exercises. He beat on a drum to summon up the spirits. According to the narration, Yamaguchi uses the crystal ball to communicate with the spirits of fighters past and future. They give him their secrets.

Yamaguchi was also shown doing Tensho kata, a slow, breathing form of the Goju style--I was unfamiliar with the Goju style at this time, and I thought the breathing method looked forced and unnatural--and then two young instructors from the Goju-kai did an exhibition of free style sparring. This looked good, fast, continuous, and with a sharp staccato-type of power. In fact, it was nice to watch--exciting and varied. The fighting was carried out at a little closer distance than, say, in the JKA or Wado-ryu, and the two karatemen stuck to basic fast and strong attacks, with both hand and foot. The blocking was sharp and performed with the open hand. No doubt these two had sparred many times, and it was only a demonstration but still quite impressive.

It was difficult to know what to make of this glimpse of Master Yamaguchi, but he did have "charisma." He always wears traditional Japanese dress. And, although he wears his hair long, this does not make him look up to date, but more like some Yamabushi (mountain warrior) from days gone by, transported incongruously to the Tokyo suburbs. I knew that he was a sort of semi-legendary karate master, a practitioner of yoga and a priest of the Shinto religion. In person I had heard he was generous and helpful.

Aug 6, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

Where there is only a choice between cowardice and violence, I would advise violence.

Mohandas Gandhi
Mohandas Gandhi

~ Mohandas Gandhi

The nation that will insist upon drawing a broad line of demarcation between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking by cowards.
~ William Francis Butler

He who is taught only by himself has a fool for a master.
~ Ben Jonson

The weakest of all weak things is a virtue that has not been tested in the fire.
~ Mark Twain

Courage first; power second; technique third.
~ Author unknown

Joe Louis
Joe Louis

Everyone has a plan until they’ve been hit.
~ Joe Louis

Seek not to follow in the footsteps of men of old; seek what they sought.
~ Matsu Basho

Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.
~ Napoleon Bonaparte

Who overcomes by force, hath overcome but half his foe.
~ John Milton

That man is the richest whose pleasures are the cheapest.
~ Henry David Thoreau

Aug 6, 2018 | in Featured Masters

Jacki ChanJackie Chan was born in 1954, the son of a poor couple who had just come to Hong Kong from the Province of Shandong, China. When he was born, his parents could barely raise the money for the hospital bill, and were almost forced to adopt him out to the delivering doctor. His parents tried very hard to raise money to pay the hospital bill and took Jackie, their only child, home. They named him Chan Kong-sang, which means "born in Hong Kong", to celebrate their safe arrival in Hong Kong.
The family lived in the French Embassy for a while because Jackie's father worked as a cook there and his mother as a housekeeper. Jackie did not like school so much and he left after finishing Primary One.
When Jackie was seven years old, his father was hired as chief chef in the American Embassy in Australia and went there to improve the family's financial status. At the age of seven, Jackie's life changed direction as he studied at the Chinese Drama Academy, studying and working 19 hours a day under the famous Chinese Opera Master, Yu Jim-Yuen. The students practiced Kung Fu, stunts, flips and somersaults, and helped with cleaning and washing up.

Aug 6, 2018 | in National Geographic

Chinese martial artist

In a Chinese New Year special, DynastyClothingStore.com dives into the seldom-spoken topic of Chinese fighters in MMA. Brace yourselves… this is the longest blog entry we’ve ever done. It is not for the casual reader. If you call yourself an MMA fan though, we know you’ve been dying to ask these questions. We’ve got the answers, and the videos.

But if you’re too lazy, scroll down all the way to the bottom for the “Too Long, Didn’t Read” version, where we sum up this near 7,000 word article in one short paragraph.

bruce lee drawing
Strapped in tight? Here we go.

Being the birthplace of Asian martial arts (as the Chinese phrase goes: “all martial arts come from Shaolin” – albeit with influences from India), China (a.k.a. The Middle Kingdom) possesses over five thousand years of history, and is the central origin of all Asian people and culture that can be traced back to the ancient times. While they won’t openly admit it, neighbouring nations such as Japan, Korea, and all of South East Asia owe their historical and cultural roots to China, in one way or another.

Why is it then, in a society of more than 2 billion ethnic Chinese people scattered across the globe combined, we have not had any successful Chinese fighters (so far)? Why is it that Japan, a tiny island comprised of only about 125 million people, has produced some of the sport’s most legendary MMA fighters, and Korea is taking the lead in pushing the next wave of successful Asian fighters, while China (and its neighbouring Chinese populations in and of Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Macau) is still the odd country out of the party? Why have Chinese fighters failed to find success at prize fighting and what is it that makes Chinese people “different” than other Asian fighters?

Aug 5, 2018 | in Masters Speak

Steve Anderson is an icon in the sport-karate universe. The native of Toledo, Ohio, spent time in various parts of the country before settling in Southern California in 1973, where he rose to the top of the circuit and acquired the nickname “Nasty.” The Black Belt Hall of Famer now operates two schools in Ontario, Canada, and oversees the instruction of some 500 students. We caught up with him for the purposes of this interview. We’re confident you will find his recollections as enlightening and entertaining as we did. You started training with your first instructors, “Chicken” Gabriel and Reynaldo Leal, when you were 15. What was it about karate that appealed to you? Steve Anderson: It was the Bruce Lee thing. Karate carried a mysticism back in those days. All the Orientals were doing it, and I wanted to have their speed and power. I wanted to be able to touch somebody and then have that person die in a few years. (laughs)

Steve "Nasty" Anderson (left) and "Chicken" Gabriel
Steve "Nasty" Anderson (left) and "Chicken" Gabriel

How did you get interested in competition? Steve Anderson: Chicken’s school was the most dominant one in Southern California — and in all of California. It was right there with the Black Karate Federation. We were actually a bit better, I thought. Rey was one of the top brown belts in Southern California, and Chicken was one of the top black belts. What enabled you to build your phenomenal tournament record? Steve Anderson: Those guys were so competitive, and that helped me set my sights on winning. I thought, If they can do it, I’ve got a good opportunity to do it, too, because I was a better athlete than most of those guys. So I started going to tournaments every week — even when they didn’t go, I’d go by myself. And I’d win and win. It was an addiction. What was your first significant win? Steve Anderson: It was in 1980 at a tournament run by Steve Fisher. That was where I first beat Keith Vitali, the No. 1 fighter. Then I beat him again later that year in the U.S. Top 10 Nationals in Stockton, California. Then I beat him in Atlanta at the U.S. Open in October of the same year. So we had three fights that year, and I won them all. Karate Illustrated rated me the No. 1 fighter in the country — in my rookie year.

Aug 5, 2018 | in Masters Speak

Master He Il ChoLegendary taekwondo master Hee Il Cho was about 10 years old when he started studying the martial arts. That was back in the 1950s when South Korea was in a state of chaos because the Korean War had just ended. The people were poor and undernourished. Cho and his family lived in a small, poverty-stricken city called Pohang. Until fairly recently, it used to take Pohang resident 12 or 13 hours on a train to reach Seoul, the nation’s capital. Back then, Koreans used names like subak, tang soo do, kong soo do and tae soo do to describe their fighting arts. “After the Korean War, Gen. Choi Hong-hi said people should get rid of all the names and call it taekwondo,” Cho says. In the 1950s, martial arts training wasn’t for exercise, he says. It was for survival. “Although they were not really gang members, young people used to roam from town to town and beat up kids and take away their toys,” Cho says. “One time I was beaten up by some boys around 12 or 13 years old. At the time, I thought it was pretty bad, so I wanted to protect myself.” Taekwondo turned out to be the answer...

Aug 5, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

George Kirby
The Black Belt staff completed a photo shoot with jujitsu icon George Kirby. The images will be used to illustrate his new book, which is in production now • The staff also conducted a photo shoot with legendary grappler Gokor Chivichyan of the Hayastan MMA Academy. Chivichyan, 55, talked about his efforts to learn the rules of Brazilian jiu-jitsu for an upcoming BJJ world championship • The talk of the town in Hollywood is a plan to remake Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon. David Leitch of Deadpool 2 might direct • Ronda Rousey swam with the sharks for an episode of Discovery’s Shark Week.
 
Black Belt Hall of Famer Tim Kennedy is making the rounds to promote his new series Hard to Kill • Various news outlets are reporting that the UFC is expanding into Russia • According to Donnie Yen’s Instagram feed, the action star has finished filming Ip Man 4 • Forbes.com called One Championship fighter Angela Lee one of the most influential martial artists in the world • Daniele Bolelli released a two-part episode of his History on Fire podcast titled “The 47 Ronin” • Iko Uwais will star in a Netflix martial arts series called Wu Assassins •

Aug 5, 2018 | in Sumo Wrestling

group of sumo wrestlers

Written by: Andrew Zerling
Originally published in the Journal of Asian Martial Arts – Volume 21 Number 1 – 2012
All photos courtesy of Aikido Centers of New Jersey – Manasquan Dojo, except where noted.

Abstract

The study and appreciation of sumo wrestling, Japan’s ancient and popular martial art, is greatly overlooked in the West. This article focuses on sumo’s winning techniques, with special emphasis on how smaller players can win against larger players. Some famous martial artists who have studied sumo are discussed. Also, there is a brief discussion sumo痴 development, rules, and training, as well as recent changes in sumo techniques. Some parallels are drawn between sumo and mixed martial arts (MMA). Techniques and tactics are presented in detail so readers might add some of these sumo moves to their own martial arts repertoire. The references used to support this article include various published literature and broadcast video.

Introduction

With a tremendous impact, two strikingly large men collide on an earthen ring. They are thickly muscled, flexible, highly trained martial artists; they are sumo wrestlers (rikishi). When all other things equal, the bigger rikishi usually wins. But rarely are all other things equal. Throughout sumo’s history there have been smaller rikishi who, with the proper technique, have toppled man-mountains. A sumo historian once said the earthen ring that sumo takes place in (dohyo) is circular to help a smaller rikishi angle away from a larger rikishi. This allows for better matches to watch, and it also illustrates that in some ways sumo roots for the underdog.

Some well-known martial artists have studied sumo. Draeger and Smith state in Asian Fighting Arts (1969: 138) that the founder of judo, Jigoro Kano, studied a great variety of martial arts, including sumo, to help formulate his modern-day judo. When Kano wanted to beat a competitor, he would study everything available, along with sumo techniques and even training books from abroad. The founder of aikido, Ueshiba Morihei, had his first real training in the martial arts with sumo. In Abundant Peace (1987: 67), Stevens describes the grueling conditioning Ueshiba did with his sumo training.

In Okinawa, karate master and pioneer Funakoshi Gichin in his youth engaged in sumo-like wrestling called tegumi, which he recounts in his book Karate-Do, My Way of Life (1975: 122-124). Funakoshi mentioned in his book that his tegumi training probably improved his karate mastery. On a more recent note, former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Lyoto Machida, besides being an expert in Shotokan karate and Brazilian jiu-jitsu, has a strong background in sumo. Machida describes in his book Machida Karate-Do Mixed Martial Arts Techniques (2009: 11, 13, 124 and 148), that his sumo training strengthened his fighting stance and base, as well as his mind...

Aug 3, 2018 | in Holistic Practices

Holistic medicine means consideration of the complete person, physically, psychologically, socially, and spiritually, in the management and prevention of disease. It is underpinned by the concept that there is a link between our physical health and our more general 'well-being'. In an holistic approach to medicine, there is the belief that our well-being relies not just on what is going on in our body physically in terms of illness or disease, but also on the close inter-relation of this with our psychological, emotional, social, spiritual and environmental state. These different states can be equally important. They should be managed together so that a person is treated as a whole. In fact some feel that the word holistic should really be spelt 'wholistic'. An holistic approach means that the doctor is informed about a patient's whole life situation.

Holistic medicine treats symptoms but it also looks for underlying causes of these symptoms. One way of explaining this is by looking for 'the story behind the story'. An example of this has been described in an Accident and Emergency setting where patients may present with one problem and then, having had relief from pain, diagnosis, and care, may explain what led to their problems and attendance. This may reveal, for example, domestic violence, exploitation, or danger. The same can be applied in a General Practice, or any other medical consultation, setting.

Holistic medicine is something that alternative medicine practitioners traditionally use as a basis for their treatments. However, it is a common misconception that holistic medicine is just 'alternative' or 'complementary' medicine. It is true that holistic medicine allows for a wider range of treatment approaches to be used together and encourages open-mindedness for these different approaches. Some of these approaches may include the use of complementary and alternative medicine but holistic medicine does not dismiss conventional medicine. It uses conventional medicine as part of the treatment approach. Nutrition, exercise, homeopathy, prayer, acupuncture and meditation are just a few other treatments that may be used together with conventional medicine as part of an holistic approach. Holistic nursing is also recognised as being an important concept.

Aug 3, 2018 | in Holistic Practices

If you haven’t noticed by now, stress is everywhere. The way your clients perform and respond to your exercise programs will depend on their ability to cope with stress.

In my own personal research, I have found that many of the top strength and conditioning facilities are monitoring stress levels of their athletes through adrenal stress tests. This is actually a very simple process, and the information gathered with this test is the cornerstone of any strength and conditioning program. Typically, the results of such tests are given in a graph as well as hard numbers that correspond to statistical norms. These are always nice to have for a couple of reasons: they will dispel any doubts your client may have, and you will be able to easily monitor success.

The only real way to monitor stress levels is through a 24-hour saliva test. In this test, the subject submits saliva into a vial at specific times of the day. Usually, the subject is required to make this submission four or more times a day with each submission in its own vial. The test is designed to measure hormone levels in the saliva at various times in the day (for more, see my article on circadian rhythms, under "related articles" at right). A great web site for locating laboratories that do saliva testing and a list of doctors familiar with the test is www.adrenalfatigue.org. It is best to get help with these clients at first...

Aug 3, 2018 | in Training Secrets

Learn how you can improve your martial arts techniques, skills & abilities in any martial art

drawing of two martial artists training on heavy bagMartial arts techniques training is one of the three components which compose the assimilation process or the system of any martial art – press here to read

The C-S-T-T The Theory - concept-strategy-tactics-technique - provides us with an end result - A “list” of mental, physical and technical qualities, which we want to acquire in order to achieve our goals. .

In this article we will talk about the assimilating stage of any technique qualities

Some helpful reading material:

To check out the checklist

The 5 questions any technique must answer...

In other words – What are the training stages, in our martial arts techniques training, which will make our techniques become our natural reactions and reflexes; which will cause them to become our second nature?

The four stages of martial arts techniques training

 

1. “In the air”.

2. Against resistance – Object feedback

3. With a partner

4. Against a partner

 

Aug 3, 2018 | in Philosophy and History
CITIZENSHIP IN A REPUBLIC
"The Man In The Arena"
Speech at the Sorbonne
Paris, France
April 23, 1910
 
The Famous Quote:
 
Theodore Roosevelt"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong
man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.
The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is
marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who
comes short again and again, because th
ere is no effort without error and
shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows
great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy
cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement,
and who
at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that
his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know
victory nor defeat"
Jul 31, 2018 | in Training Secrets

"It should be known that the secret principles of Goju Ryu Karate exist in the Kata"
-Chojun Miyagi

If Karate-do is an art, then kata is the martial artist’s portfolio. Like any good painting, kata can be enjoyed on the superficial level for the sheer beauty of its movements. But as the talent of the artist grows those same movements begin to display a hidden quality, much in the way the brush strokes of a fine painter add depth to the subject. This hidden quality is the bunkai, or application of, the kata.

But why bother with this application, this bunkai? Shouldn’t we be focused on sparring? Isn’t sparring a more accurate representation of what we’ll need to save ourselves and our loved ones on the mean streets of modern society?

Clearly sparring is a valuable aspect of martial arts instruction. Sparring teaches confidence, timing, control (both physically and emotionally) and, depending upon the intensity, it allows the student to experience being hit in a controlled environment. However, in a true life and death situation sparring has one glaring problem: both parties shake hands and walk away.

The intent of this short essay is to explore the history and application of kata while also presenting an argument to support more study into the Okuden Waza (hidden techniques) that the kata bring to self-defense applications. To quote Iain Abernethy Sensei,

"The kata are a collection of karate’s most brutal and effective fighting techniques, including not only the commonly practiced kicks and punches, but also neck cranks, throws, chokes, strangles, joint locks/dislocations and many other grappling techniques."1...

Jul 19, 2018 | in National Geographic
Calligraphy of the kanji for Uechi-Ryū
Calligraphy of the
kanji for Uechi-Ryū

Uechi-Ryū (上地流 Uechi-Ryū) is a traditional style of Okinawan karate. Uechi-Ryū means "Style of Uechi" or "School of Uechi". Originally called Pangai-noon, which translates to English as "half-hard, half-soft", the style was renamed Uechi-Ryū after the founder of the style, Kanbun Uechi, an Okinawan who went to Fuzhou in Fujian Province, China to study martial arts and Chinese medicine when he was 19 years old.

After his death, in 1948, the style was refined, expanded, and popularized by Kanbun Uechi's son, Kanei Uechi.

Jul 19, 2018 | in National Geographic
Shōtōkan
(松濤館流)
Shoto Kan Kanji

Shotokan (松濤館 Shōtōkan) is a style of karate, developed from various martial arts by Gichin Funakoshi (1868–1957) and his son Gigo (Yoshitaka) Funakoshi (1906–1945). Gichin was born in Okinawa and is widely credited with popularizing "karate do" through a series of public demonstrations, and by promoting the development of university karate clubs, including those at Keio, Waseda, Hitotsubashi (Shodai), Takushoku, Chuo, Gakushuin, and Hosei.

Funakoshi had many students at the university clubs and outside dojos, who continued to teach karate after his death in 1957. However, internal disagreements (in particular the notion that competition is contrary to the essence of karate) led to the creation of different organisations—including an initial split between the Japan Karate Association (headed by Masatoshi Nakayama) and the Shotokai (headed by Motonobu Hironishi and Shigeru Egami), followed by many others—so that today there is no single "Shotokan school", although they all bear Funakoshi's influence.

As the most widely practiced style, Shotokan is considered a traditional and influential form of karate do.

Jul 19, 2018 | in National Geographic
Motobu-ryū
(本部流)
motobu ryu in 1926

Motobu-ryū (本部流) is a school of karate founded by Choki Motobu in 1922. The official full name is Nihon Denryu Heiho Motobu Kenpo ("Japan's traditional tactics Motobu Kenpo").

Motobu Udun-di (本部御殿手), a Motobu family style of Karate, is also sometimes called Motobu-ryu or Motobu-ryu Udundi. It is a combination of the native Okinawan martial arts Te (an earlier name for Karate), Okinawan kobudō and Ryukyuan Dance.

Chosei Motobu is the inheritor of both Motobu-Ryu (his father's art) and Motobu Udundi (the art of his uncle, Choyu Motobu).

Jul 19, 2018 | in National Geographic
Wadō-ryū
(和道流)
wado ryu flag

Wadō-ryū (和道流) is a karate style; three organizations now teach the Wadō-ryū style: the Japan Karate-dō Federation Wadōkai (abbreviated to Wadōkai; "Zen Nihon Karate-dō Renmei Wadokai" in Japan), the Wadōryū Karatedō Renmei, and the Wadō Kokusai Karatedō Renmei (abbreviated to Wadō Kokusai; also known as the Wadō International Karatedō Federation [WIKF]).

Jul 19, 2018 | in National Geographic
Gōjū-ryū
(剛柔流)
chojun miyagi

Gōjū-ryū (剛柔流), Japanese for "hard-soft style", is one of the main traditional Okinawan styles of karate, featuring a combination of hard and soft techniques. Both principles, hard and soft, come from the famous martial arts book used by Okinawan masters during the 19th and 20th centuries, the Bubishi (Chinese: 武備志; pinyin: Wǔbèi Zhì). Gō, which means hard, refers to closed hand techniques or straight linear attacks; jū, which means soft, refers to open hand techniques and circular movements. Gōjū-ryū incorporates both circular and linear movements into its curriculum, combining hard striking attacks such as kicks and close hand punches with softer open hand circular techniques for attacking, blocking, and controlling the opponent, including joint locks, grappling, takedowns, and throws.

Major emphasis is given to breathing correctly in all of the katas but particularly in the Sanchin kata which is one of two core katas of this style. The second kata is called Tensho, meant to teach the student about the soft style of the system. Gōjū-ryū practices methods that include body strengthening and conditioning, its basic approach to fighting (distance, stickiness, power generation, etc.), and partner drills.

Jul 19, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

crouching tiger hidden dragon sequel picA sequel to Ang Lee’s acclaimed 2000 Kung-Fu fantasy epic, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON, is slated to begin production in May, The Weinstein Company have confirmed. A script from John Fusco currently has FREDDY VS JASON and BRIDE OF CHUCKY director Ronny Yu in talks to helm. Despite those ‘unique’ Hollywood horror sequels on his resume, Hong Kong native Yu does have plenty experience in the martial arts genre with the likes of Jet Li’s FEARLESS and THE BRIDE WITH WHITE HAIR.

 

Lee’s Oscar-winning film was based on the fourth book in Wang Du Lu’s Crane-Iron series, it is expected the as-yet-untitled follow-up will continue with the fifth book, Silver Vase, Iron Knight, which continues the adventures of Yu Shu Lien (Michelle Yeoh’s character in Lee’s film). This announcement suggests Yeoh will be returning but is yet to be confirmed.

Jul 19, 2018 | in National Geographic
Shorinji Kempo
少林寺拳法
Shorinji Kempo 少林寺拳法

Shorinji Kempo (少林寺拳法 shōrinji-kempō, meaning "Shaolin Temple Fist Method") is an esoteric Japanese martial art considered as the modified version of Shaolin Kung Fu (using the same kanji). It was established in 1947 by Doshin So (宗 道臣 Sō Dōshin), a Japanese martial artist and former military intelligence agent.

Shorinji Kempo claims to be a holistic system, whose training methods are divided into three parts: self-defense training, mental training, and health training. The basis are the concepts that "spirit and body are not separable" (心身一如: shinshin-ichinyo) and that it is integral to "train both body and spirit" (拳禅一如: kenzen ichinyo).

Through employing a well-organized technical course outline, Shorinji Kempo claims to help the practitioner "establish oneself" and to promote "mutual comfort". The philosophy and techniques of Shorinji Kempo are outlined in their handbook, (少林寺拳法教範) Shōrinji-kempō-kyōhan

Jul 18, 2018 | in National Geographic
Arnis
arnis practitioners training

Arnis, also known as Kali or Eskrima, is the national sport and martial art of the Philippines. The three are roughly interchangeable umbrella terms for the traditional martial arts of the Philippines ("Filipino Martial Arts", or FMA) that emphasize weapon-based fighting with sticks, knives, bladed weapons, and various improvised weapons as well as "open hand" or techniques without weapons. It is also known as Estoque (Spanish for rapier), Estocada (Spanish for thrust or stab) and Garrote (Spanish for club). In Luzon it may go by the name of Arnis de Mano.

The indigenous martial art that the Spanish encountered in 1610 was not yet called "Eskrima" at that time. During those times, this martial art was known as Paccalicali-t to the Ibanags, Didya (later changed to Kabaroan) to the Ilokanos, Sitbatan or Kalirongan to Pangasinenses, Sinawali ("to weave") to the Kapampangans, Calis or Pananandata ("use of weapons") to the Tagalogs, Pagaradman to the Ilonggos and Kaliradman to the Cebuanos. Kuntaw and Silat are separate martial arts that are also practiced in the Philippine Archipelago...

Jul 18, 2018 | in National Geographic

 

Muay Thai
muay thai fighter striking opponent with knee kick

Muay Thai (Thai: มวยไทย, RTGS: Muai Thai, pronounced[mūa̯j tʰāj]) or Thai boxing is a combat sport of Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques. This discipline is known as the "Art of Eight Limbs" because it is characterized by the combined use of fists, elbows, knees and shins. Muay Thai became widespread internationally in the twentieth century, when practitioners from Thailand began competing in Kickboxing, mixed rules matches, as well as matches under Muay Thai rules around the world. The professional league is governed by The Professional Boxing Association of Thailand (P.A.T) sanctioned by The Sports Authority of Thailand (S.A.T.), and World Professional Muaythai Federation (WMF) overseas. It is similar to related styles in other parts of the Indian cultural sphere, namely Lethwei from Myanmar, Pradal Serey from Cambodia, Muay Lao from Laos, Tomoi from Malaysia...

Jul 16, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

To be a well-rounded fighter, you must possess the ability to strike and grapple. Using punching to complement your grappling and ground-fighting skills is very important. In fact, it is necessary to have a background in striking if you wish to excel in MMA fighting events.

For instance, if you’re a grappler and you want to be able to close the distance between yourself and your opponent, you must understand how to strike. A good sense of timing is especially important for you to develop. You must be able to judge the potential danger of the movements of your opponent. Knowing the right time to block a technique and avoid taking punishment from your opponent’s blows is also a product of good timing.

two fighters grappling
(Brazilian jiu-jitsu instructor Rickson Gracie, above left)

If you are competing in a wrestling match, you might not need to have this type of understanding of timing, especially while you and your opponent are on your feet. But to succeed in MMA competition, you absolutely must have mastered this element of fighting. That will enable you to shoot in for a takedown and totally avoid the punishment your striking opponent will try to inflict as he struggles to avoid being taken to the ground...

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 16, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

japanese buildings on a cliff's edgeIf you are not moving forward, you are slowly inching backwards from whence you came. So plan on hanging on the edge, because if you’re not,
you're taking up too much of my space and others.

 

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 16, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

image of building and mountains in the distance"It's not the Violence that makes the man, it's the distance he's willing to travel in order to succeed."​

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 16, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

two fighters fighting in the sunset"If you can control the distance/interval in "battle," you can control the strategic balance/battle of your mind."  

Note: Distance in striking, kicking, blocking, and most of all in 'Movement.'

Jul 16, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

sabate practitioner high kickMost martial artists know that savate is the official fighting art of France, but beyond that, they would probably be hard-pressed to recite any details about the style. That’s unfortunate because it possesses a long and distinguished history that makes it a valuable addition to the world of martial arts. The following is an easy-to-digest list of facts and is designed to enlighten all martial artists about the history, rules and techniques of this dynamic form of fighting. If it inspires a few to sign up for lessons, so much the better.

A Brief History of Savate

  • The roots of savate are unclear, but some scholars believe they can be traced all the way back to the legendary Greek fighting art of pankration.
  • More recent records indicate that it sprouted from various street-fighting systems used in France during the late 17th century.
  • Boxe francaise, an alternative name for savate, was founded in 1838 by Charles Lecour.
  • Before that, two fighting arts were popular in France: la savate and le chausson. The former was a system of street fighting that used all parts of the body for striking, while the latter was regarded as a milder system and the ancestor of the sport of boxe francaise. Both taught self-defense techniques.
  • After losing a friendly sparring match with English boxer Owen Swift, Charles Lecour was inspired to combine le chausson with English boxing.
  • Charles Lecour’s loss led to tremendous technical changes in savate that spanned decades. It was finally codified as a ring sport in Joseph Charlemont’s L’Art de la Boxe Fra Francaise.
  • Although the teachings of Joseph Charlemont have remained definitive, they are still open to modification. All changes must be approved by the executive committee of the French and International Federation of Boxe Francaise Savate and Related Disciplines...
Jul 14, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
kung fu drawing
Hanart TZ Gallery

Hong Kong's Hanart TZ gallery’s Kung Fu in Africa exhibition unveils a rare collection of lively, hand-painted film art from the '80s and '90s depicting everyone from Bruce Lee to Jean-Claude Van Damme.

Hong Kong's film heritage is coming full circle — by way of West Africa.

Currently showing at Hanart TZ, one of Hong Kong's finest galleries dealing in Chinese contemporary art, is "Kung Fu in Africa," an exhibition of 32 colorful, hand-painted martial arts movie posters, which were produced by enterprising artists in Ghana during the 1980s and 1990s. Painted on huge canvas flour sacks, the images are as delightful as they are unlikely. As the exhibition's curator Ernie Wolfe puts it: "These works are a product of globalization in the best possible way."

Wolfe, a longtime dealer in African art via his namesake gallery in Los Angeles, collected the works over dozens of trips to Ghana during the past two decades. A personal friendship with Hanart founder Johnson Chang — the two went to college together — led to the collaboration on the current show...

Jul 14, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
scene from the pink panther
United Artists/Photofest
Peter Sellers and Burt Kwouk in 1975's
'Return of the Pink Panther'

He also appeared in the James Bond films 'Goldfinger' and 'You Only Live Twice.'

LONDON (AP) — Burt Kwouk, an actor who played martial arts expert Cato in the comic Pink Panther films, has died. He was 85.

Kwouk's agent, Jean Diamond, said in a statement that he "passed peacefully" on Tuesday. She didn't give a cause of death.

Born in northwest England in 1930 and raised in Shanghai, Kwouk had his first major film role in 1958's The Inn of the Sixth Happiness, starring Ingrid Bergman.

Jul 14, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
danny chen
Danny Chan

'Matrix' stuntman Tiger Chen will also star in the martial arts/Western mash up from director Jonathan Lim.

Martial arts stars Robin Shou, Danny Chan and Tiger Chen have signed on to star in Kung Fu Cowboy, a martial arts meets western mash-up from Deadwood writer W. Earl Brown and Pali Road director Jonathan Lim.

The feature is set during the anti-Chinese riots in California in the 1880s led by xenophobic politicians like Denis Kearney and his Workingmen’s Party of California. Thousands of immigrant Chinese, who had helped build America's transnational railroad, were faced with rising discrimination and racial tension...

Jul 14, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
pic of the real miyagi
Courtesy of Fantasia Festival

Meet the man behind the Karate Kid's teacher.

In the kind of admiring portrait a student might make of his master, Kevin Derek's The Real Miyagi introduces the Japanese karate sensei who, upon emigrating to the US in the mid-60s, became one of the discipline's key promoters in the West. Fumio Demura's strong connection to The Karate Kid will be the biggest selling point for this informative but unpolished film, drawing attention at fests, but the doc will be seen mostly within the martial arts community, with some small spillover on video to fans of chopsocky cinema.

An opening interview with Steven Seagal assures the uninitiated that Demura is "the real thing" as opposed to the large number of "experts" working in Hollywood who actually have few accomplishments under their black belts. Glancing at the walls of his dojo, we see photos of visitors from Bruce Lee to Hilary Swank and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Not a bad group of admirers for a man who, after a few years of near-success in Japan, moved to the US in 1965 with $300 and slept in a garage, frightened and lonesome.

Jul 14, 2018 | in Philosophy and History
two man bed of nails concrete breaking"Vulnerability is our most accurate measure of personal Courage."
Jul 14, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

image of the earth from space"Humility isn't thinking less of yourself; it's thinking of yourself less."

Jul 13, 2018 | in Samurai

samurai with swordThe Japanese sword has acquired mystical significance in the wake of Samurai history, but to what extent is this image justified? This article will attempt to shatter a few myths surrounding both the use and omnipotence of the sword in the samurai arsenal. Tokugawa Ieyasu's famous remark that the sword was the 'soul of the samurai' should not be taken at face value. This was most likely a comment made reflecting the relatively peaceful years of Sekigahara (1600) to Osaka (1614) when battlefield weapons (i.e. firearms, spears and bows) were being pushed to the back of samurai life and the sword as the weapon of everyday life.

It is necessary to look at both the use and importance of other samurai weapons in relation to the sword in order to discover whether it would have been valued and utilised above all else. The comment made by Ieyasu (1543-1616) was more than likely aimed at samurai (including the lowly ashigaru) in the wake of Hideyoshi's Separation Edicts of 1587 and 1591. This edict sought to ensure that the vast armies of the Sengoku period would never be raised again; by providing a clear distinction between peasant and samurai. It should be noted that the ashigaru were not completely integrated into the samurai caste until the Edo period, forming the lower echelons thereof. As a result, I will be paying far more attention to the weapons used by the samurai, as opposed to the sohei (warrior monks) or ashigaru.

Jul 13, 2018 | in Samurai
samurai armor
Ii Naomasa (1561-1602) at
Sekigahara (1600), bust by
Agustín J. Rodríguez

[Author’s note: This article was first published in the French journal Figurines as "Le Samourai: un grand seigneur de guerre du Sengoku" (no. 29. [Aug.-Sept. 1999], pp. 50-53; translated by Dominique Breffort.). What appears before you is a revised and updated edition of this article, published here for the first time. AJR]

Samurai. The word conjures images of fierce oriental warriors in ornate silks, laced armour, and horn-bedecked helmets brandishing gleaming swords of near-mythical qualities. While this is not altogether a false impression, it is somewhat of a romantic and simplistic notion. The feudal Japanese warrior class is victim to the same misconceptions as its Western counterpart of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. To complicate matters are the seemingly insurmountable language barrier, and a general lack of familiarity with Oriental culture and history: the former can be worked around; the latter can be overcome.

Anything but a cursory overview of the evolution of Japanese armour is beyond the scope of an article such as this; but there are some things to look for, and perhaps even comparisons to be made with what was taking place in the West. What most think of as the "classic" samurai is in fact the early feudal Japanese warrior (a prime example is Ray Lamb's now classic Taisho) -- much as many might consider a mailed and surcoated "crusader" the prototypical European knight or man-at-arms. The Kamakura period (ca. 1186 - ca. 1333) is characterized by extremely colourful and ornately laced, albeit "boxy", armours (ô-yoroi and early dô-maru) with huge shoulder guards (sode), and helmets (kabuto) with sweeping neckguards (shikoro), adorned with imposing gilt, stylized horns (kuwagata). The Muromachi period (ca. 1334 - ca. 1572) represents a transitional period in the history of Japanese armour that roughly corresponds to a similar evolutionary parallel in Western Europe. Whereas in the latter we see a transition from mail to plate, in Japan we witness a "streamlining" of armour as it becomes more form-fitting, its components reduced in size, relatively less ornate and arguably more functional. In Europe, armour evolved in response to the changing nature of warfare; in Japan, despite an ongoing distancing from the style of warfare dominated by a mounted archer nobility and an ever-increasing diversification within the field armies, there is no overwhelming "evolutionary" pressure to simplify the harness (gusoku), save for practicality, cost, and supply. The overture to the Sengoku would place hitherto unseen demands on the armourers' craft and the nobility's purse owing to the extended time in the field and the increase in the number of forces fielded.

Jul 13, 2018 | in Samurai

Sakamoto Ryomo

In June 1853, Commodore Matthew Perry of the United States Navy led a squadron of four heavily armed warships into Sagami Bay, to the Port of Uraga, just south of the Shogun's capital at Edo. What the Americans found was a technologically backward, though intricately complicated, island nation, under the rule of the House of Tokugawa, that had been isolated from the rest of the world for two and a half centuries.

Whether or not the Americans realized the far-reaching effects of their gunboat diplomacy, they now set into motion a coup de theatre which fifteen years hence would transform the conglomerate of some 260 feudal domains into a single, unified country. When the fifteenth and last Shogun, Yoshinobu Tokugawa, abdicated his rule and restored the emperor to his ancient seat of power in November 1867, Japan was well on its way to becoming an industrialized nation, rapidly modernizing and Westernizing in a unique Japanese sense.

Jul 13, 2018 | in Samurai

life of the samurai and shogunates

There is an old tale that is told in Japan called In the Land of the Rising Sun. "Go! And may prosperity attend thy dynasty, and may it, like heaven and Earth, endure for ever." With this command, the sun god Amaterasu sent her grandson Ninigi to rule over Japan. Ninigi descended from the heavens, but he only stayed on the island, and left it up to his grandson Jimmu to fulfill Amaterasu's wish. Jimmu journeyed to the main island of Honshu, where he became the firs emperor of the Land of the Rising Sun.

This tale of Japan's beginning is related in the Nihon Shoki, or Chronicles of Japan. Ever since the 700s when the story was set down, Japan's many clans have placed themselves under the reign of an imperial family, who claimed to trace its origins back to Jimmu. This dynasty founded a long lasting capital in Nara, which drew its inspiration from China. Earlier, the Japanese court had used a Chinese model for a series of political reforms known as the Taika, which was aimed at strengthening the central government...

Jul 13, 2018 | in Samurai

“A man exists for a generation, but his name lasts to the end of time.”

 

(The quotations cited in this article are from the Hagakure (“Hidden Leaves”) a book of aphorisms by the samurai Yamamoto Tsunetomo, published in 1716, unless otherwise noted).

 

When you look the artifacts on display at the Cranbrook Institute of Science, remember that each has its own unique story. The practicalities of exhibition design prevent us from relating the saga of all the many wonderful items on display. This is quite aside from the time it would take you to make it through the museum were we to tell them all! So the stories sadly stay untold.

 

This article tells the story behind several of the artifacts from the Anthropology collection of the Cranbrook Institute of Science. We will begin with a simple description of the artifact and then let our minds range out from there to the history and culture of the people who made and used it. In this way any item, from the grandest piece of jewelry to the humblest of baskets can reveal much of the human condition.

 

We begin with a real showpiece: a set of Japanese “samurai” armor, made in the 17th century. Frederick Stearns, who co-founded Stearns Brothers’ Pharmacy in Detroit, purchased the armor in the latter part of the 1800’s. He donated it to the Detroit Arts Council (later the Detroit Institute of Arts) as part of a large collection that he had amassed from around the world. It was then passed on to Cranbrook in the 1940’s...

Jul 13, 2018 | in Kids Martial Arts

“The martial arts are ultimately self-knowledge. A punch or a kick is not to knock the hell out of the guy in front, but to knock the hell out of your ego, your fear, or your hang-ups.”

- Bruce Lee

Recently on a visit back home, I met my one of my close friends at his son’s martial arts studio so I could drop in and see what young Ethan was up to. Ethan was one step away from getting his white sash in Poekoelan, an Indonesian martial art. He beamed with pride as we watched him do various forms and drills. Shortly after I left town, Ethan earned his white sash, upon which he got to join the big kids in the adjacent room. There the big kids practice more advanced forms, techniques, and even some sparring. He was thrilled.

Ethan’s always been a good kid, but from what I observed the martial arts gave him quite a healthy dose of self esteem and self respect - two of the many benefits one gains with participation in them. Whether your kid is too bossy, too shy, or perhaps just a little hyper, the martial arts can help your child learn many important life lessons. (And, of course, those same lessons apply for all of us, not just kids.)

Here are seven reasons why your child should practice martial arts:

Reason #1: They (and You) Will Get More Active...

Jul 12, 2018 | in Samurai

bushido code of seven virtuesThe Bushido consisted of seven virtues.  These virtues were the heart and soul of the Samurai.  It was not just the way they lived their lives, it was who they were.  To truly understand the Samurai, you must understand the Bushido.  Although it was an unspoken code and certainly never canonized like the Bible, Bushido reached such popularity that certain elements were turned into law by during the Edo period(1603-1868).  Training in the seven virtues of Bushido can make a great and positive impact on your life.

bushido bookBushido came to America in the early 1900’s via a book entitled Bushido: The Soul of Japan, or Bushido: The Spirit of the Samurai written by Nitobe Inazo, a Japanese scholar, agricultural economist, author, diplomat, and politician.  The book is often criticized by scholars today for romanticizing about a chivalrous age that never existed (some Samurai were very corrupt; they were political figures and landowners with the ability to raise taxes and abused their power).  The book however, is grounded in fact as most Samurai were adamant followers of Bushido.  The question is “What exactly is Bushido, and how can it be applied to my modern, non-violent life?”  You do not need to practice Kendo or any other martial art for that matter to follow Bushido.  No one needs to be a warrior ready to sacrifice their life for their Shogun.  We do however need to be fearless and ready to sacrifice our lives (metaphorically speaking) for a higher purpose.  That purpose is different for each individual.  Through meditation and self evaluation/discovery, we will be able to discover who we are and what that purpose is.  Bushido is the pathway that will lead us to that discovery...

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 10, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

shoreline in the distanceNever allow the difference between what you say and what you do to be far from the truth. This is known as ‘Hane no Tate mae;’ the difference between what you say and what you do. This goes for training and matches the real world you live in. Be true to thy self.

Remember Your Past “Shoshin wasu re be kara zu.” Do not forget your initial intentions connected to your Budo. Remember the early lessons and hardships connected with the search for mastering skills and enlightenment. Don’t forget where you came from or you won’t get to where you need to go!

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 10, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

 

top of a mountain“To fight and conquer in one hundred battles is not the highest skill. 
To subdue the enemy with no fight at all, that’s the highest skill.”

 

 

Jul 10, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
ip man 3 movie shot
Courtesy of Pegasus Motion Pictures
'Ip Man 3'

'Zootopia,' meanwhile, gave Disney Animation its highest China debut ever, pulling in $23.5 million and earning rave local reviews.

Ip Man 3, the latest installment of the hit Hong Kong martial-arts franchise starring Donnie Yen, punched its way to a massive opening weekend in mainland China.

The fight flick, which was produced by Pegasus Motion Pictures and includes the stunt casting of Mike Tyson as a bone-crunching villain, grossed $71.5 million from Friday to Sunday, according to estimates from Beijing-based box-office monitor Ent Group.

The film's high-flying rollout has been marred by widespread allegations of fraud, however.

Several major media outlets, including the state-backed China Daily, carried reports Monday alleging that Ip Man 3's Chinese distributor, Dayinmu Film Distribution, orchestrated an audacious scheme to enhance the film's perceived performance...

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 10, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

top of a mountain with spectacular viewsLive your dream. If you don’t have one, find one. 
Life is too short to allow The sands of time to slip by without contributing something great. 
Training is our Budo key. Practice as if it was impossible to fail. 
Think of that; just by pushing to the brink of exhaustion you’ll find a deep understanding of what you’re made of. What’s your ilk?? Upon that moment, many things become clear mentally allowing your mind to focus On the magic of self-belief and awakening. 
End each day knowing everything you did was executed with total completion. 
Stay close to your practice and stay connected every day. It is the continual advancement of the human body through training, that things truly change. 
Life is passing by all too quickly. So, go on, believe in the self. 
Courtesy to all, Respect to some, Fear to NONE 
Live your virtues: Considerations
​-​
Compassion
​-​
Respect
​-​
Passion
​-​
Forgiveness
​-​
Honor
​-​
and love. 
Most of all, cultivate a selfless spirit. Share your children’s Joy ..

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 10, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

shoreline in the distanceNever allow the difference between what you say and what you do to be far from the truth. This is known as ‘Hane no Tate mae;’ the difference between what you say and what you do. This goes for training and matches the real world you live in. Be true to thy self.

Remember Your Past “Shoshin wasu re be kara zu.” Do not forget your initial intentions connected to your Budo. Remember the early lessons and hardships connected with the search for mastering skills and enlightenment. Don’t forget where you came from or you won’t get to where you need to go!

Jul 9, 2018 | in National Geographic
shito ryu kanji
Shitō-ryū
(糸東流)

Shitō-ryū (糸東流) is a form of karate that was founded in 1934 by Kenwa Mabuni (摩文仁 賢和Mabuni Kenwa). A synthesis of various different Okinawan schools of martial arts, the Shitō-ryū is primarily practiced in Osaka. Due to both controversies in Kenwa Mabuni's line of succession and Mabuni's extensive efforts to popularize the martial art form in Japan, there exist many successor karate schools that claim Shitō-ryū as an influence.

Jul 9, 2018 | in Training Secrets

There are two type of breathing use when performing a kata. The first is called “ibuki” or quick energy breath. Ibuki breathing is done at the execution of blocks, kicks, and punches. The second is “nogare”, or slow breathing. Nogare breathing is usually done when moving from one position to the next or when there is a pause in the kata. Through the practice of proper breathing the student is able to keep mental composer throughout practice in the dojo and in his everyday life. Correct breathing will enhance a students mental and physical endurance as well as his concentration, focus and develop the warrior spirit necessary to be a good martial artist. Effective and the body.

Jul 9, 2018 | in Holistic Practices

Pranayama, most commonly known as deep breathing exercises, is a compound word with Pran and Ayama. Pran means breathing or respiration and Ayama means extension or expansion. Thus, Pranayama means extension of breath or life span. During pranayama the mind must concentrate on breathing process. According to the father of Modern Science Yoga, acquiring the skill of controlling and regulating the inhalation, exhalation and retention of breath is called “Pranayama”. Life exists in different systems (such as digestive system, nervous systems, circulatory systems etc.) and organs. Pranayama strengthens, protects and energizes them. If pranayama is practiced on a systematic and regular basis, almost all the diseases can be prevented and cured. It acts like a gateway to higher yoga and leads to realize your inner self. Also you don’t no need to spend a lot of time on making simple healthy recipes.

5 Most Effective Pranayamas : Deep Breathing Exercises

pranyama diagramThere pranayamas are simple, but very effective tool for relaxation. These simple deep breathing exercises must be done taking care of the preventive measures. Certain people suffering from delicate diseases must consult their physician before practicing these exercises. After practicing these, it is recommended to practice the acupressure therapy to enjoy all the benefits of acupressure points on your palms and feet.

Jul 9, 2018 | in Holistic Practices

praying mantis kung fu logoNote: the Chinese terms in this article are in expressed in Cantonese.

 

Seven Star Praying Mantis kung fu has, as a part of its syllabus, health enhancing breathing exercises called (in Cantonese) Law Hon Gong which, when translated, means "The Monk’s Strength". Acquired from the fabled Shaolin Temple, these chi gong-styled breathing exercises have meditative, health enhancing, strength building, and martial training aspects to them.

 

The Law Hon Gong movements and postures combine to a total of eighteen. They are believed to be the chi gong movements the Shaolin temple monks used to increase the strength of their martial arts.

 

Although at present there is no written history as to which of the Seven Star Praying Mantis teacher brought the Law Hon Gong into the system it is thought to be fifth generation Fan Yuk Tung. He was known as "Giant Fan" as he weighted about three hundred pounds...

Jul 6, 2018 | in National Geographic

shorin-ryu founderShōrin-ryū (少林流) is one of the major modern Okinawan martial arts and is one of the oldest styles of karate. It was named by Choshin Chibana in 1933, but the system itself is much older. The characters 少林, meaning "small" and "forest" respectively and pronounced "shōrin" in Japanese, are also used in the Chinese and Japanese words for Shaolin Kung Fu. "Ryū" means "school". Shōrin-ryū combines elements of the traditional Okinawan fighting styles of Shuri-te.

History

Chosin Chibana was a top student of the great master of shuri-te, Anko Itosu. Anko Itosu was the top student of Matsumura Sōkon, who was a renowned warrior in his time; bodyguard to three kings of Okinawa, he has been called the Miyamoto Musashi of Okinawa and was dubbed bushi, or warrior, by his king. However, while Sōkon is often referred to as the "founder" of Shuri-te, he did not invent all of its components. In 1933, Chosin Chibana chose to name his style Shōrin-ryū in honor of its samurai roots and to differentiate it from other styles that were being modified from the original teachings of Anko Itosu. Generally, Okinawan karate schools did not have individual names for styles like schools in Japan. Several branches of traditional Shōrin-ryū exist today in both Okinawa and the Western World. While there is a more concentrated population of practitioners in its birthplace of Okinawa, Shōrin-ryū Karate has had many high dan grades outside Okinawa.

Jul 6, 2018 | in National Geographic
2 american kenpo practitioners
American Kenpo

American Kenpo (/ˈkɛnp/, pronounced KeNpo), also known as Kenpo Karate, is a martial art characterized by the use of quick and powerful strikes delivered from all of the body's natural weapons, powered by rapid stance transitions, called "shifting." Beginners are introduced to basic attack responses, which comprise a larger system taught through scripted scenarios, which allow instructors a platform to share concepts and principles Ed Parker emphasized in his teachings.

The purpose of training in this manner is to increase physical coordination and continuity with linear and circular motion. Each movement when correctly executed leads into the next, keeping an adversary's "dimensional zone" in check while limiting their ability to retaliate. Should the adversary not react as anticipated, the skilled Kenpo practitioner is able to seamlessly transition into an alternative and appropriate action, drawn spontaneously from the trained subconscious.

Founded and codified by Ed Parker, American Kenpo is primarily a self-defense combat system. Parker, a Senior Grand Master, made significant modifications to the original art of Kenpo which he learned throughout his life, introducing or changing principles, theories, and concepts of motion, as well as terminology. At the time of his passing in December 1990, Parker had created: Short Form 1, Long Form 1, Short Form 2, Long Form 2, Short Form 3, Long Form 3, Long Form 4, Long Form 5 (Surprise Attacks), Long Form 6 (Bare Hands vs. Weapons), Long Form 7 (Twin Clubs), Long Form 8 (Twin Knives), 154 named (ideal phase) technique sequences with 96 extensions, taught in three phases (Ideal, What-if and Formulation Phases). Parker believed in tailoring Kenpo to the individual and would also encourage his students to explore the unknown areas of martial arts.

Parker left behind a large following of instructors who honored his teachings by implementing many different versions of American Kenpo. As Senior Grandmaster, Parker did not name a successor to his art, but instead entrusted his senior students to continue his teachings in their own way.

Jul 6, 2018 | in National Geographic
Hapkido
hapkido kanji
hapkido tournament

Hapkido (UK: /ˌhæpkˈd/HAP-kee-DOH,US: /hɑːpˈkd/hahp-KEE-doh, also spelled hap ki do or hapki-do; from Koreanhapgido[hap̚.k͈i.do]) is a highly eclecticKorean martial art. It is a form of self-defense that employs joint locks, grappling, and throwing techniques similar to those of other martial arts, as well as kicks, punches, and other striking attacks. It also teaches the use of traditional weapons, including knife, sword, rope, ssang juhl bong (nunchaku), cane (ji pang ee), short stick (dan bong), and middle-length staff (joong bong, gun (analogous to the Japanese jō), and bō (Japanese)), which vary in emphasis depending on the particular tradition examined.

Hapkido employs both long-range and close-range fighting techniques, utilizing jumping kicks and percussive hand strikes at longer ranges, and pressure point strikes, joint locks, and throws at closer fighting distances. Hapkido emphasizes circular motion, redirection of force, and control of the opponent. Practitioners seek to gain advantage over their opponents through footwork and body positioning to incorporate the use of leverage, avoiding the use of brute strength against brute strength.

The art was adapted from Daitō-ryū Aiki-jūjutsu as it was taught by Choi Yong-Sool (최용술) when he returned to Korea after World War II after having lived in Japan for 30 years. This system was later combined by Choi´s disciples with kicking and striking techniques of indigenous and contemporary arts such as taekkyeon, and Tang Soo Do; as well as various throwing techniques and ground fighting from Japanese Judo.

Jul 5, 2018 | in National Geographic
kyodu - bow and arrow
Kyūdō

Kyūdō is the Japanese martial art of archery. Experts in kyūdō are referred to as kyūdōka(弓道家). Kyūdō is based on kyūjutsu ("art of archery"), which originated with the samurai class of feudal Japan. Kyūdō is practised by thousands of people worldwide. As of 2005, the International Kyudo Federation had 132,760 graded members...

Jul 4, 2018 | in Weapons

2 martial artists fighting with sai and staffStrictly translated, the Japanese word kobudo covers all ancient martial traditions, armed or unarmed, of Okinawa or Japan. Today, when specifically referring to Okinawan traditions, the term kobudo is most often used to describe the weapons of the Ryukyu Islands.

These weapons include:

 

  • sai (iron truncheon)
  • Bō (Six foot staff)
  • nunchaku (horse bridle)
  • kama (sickle)
  • tekko (metal knuckles)
  • tsuifa (millstone handle)
  • eiku (oar)
  • suruchin (weighted rope)
  • timbi (shield and short spear)

 

Kobudo is an Okinawan term that refers to Kobujutsu or, ancient weapon art. In 1477, during the Second Sho

Dynasty, swords and other weapons were banned from Okinawa and the Ryukyu islands by Emperor Shoshin. All weapons on the island were collected and garrisoned in his royal castle in Shuri on Okinawa. It was as a direct result of Shoshin's edict that Okinawans turned to the development of karate (open hand) fighting. Although kobudo weapons are not really a part of karate, their development has shadowed the development and evolution of karate to the degree that they are almost inseparable. In 1600 the Japanese invaded and occupied Okinawa. As a conquering army they used the continued prohibition of weapons as a method of controlling the population.

Jul 4, 2018 | in National Geographic

Krav Maga (/krɑːv məˈɡɑː/; Hebrew: קְרַב מַגָּע[ˈkʁav maˈɡa], lit. "contact-combat") is a military self-defense and fighting system developed for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and Israeli security forces (Shin Bet and Mossad) that derived from a combination of techniques sourced from boxing, wrestling, aikido, judo and karate, along with realistic fight training.

two fighters training in Krav Maga
Krav Maga lesson at a paratrooper
school in Israel, 1955

Krav Maga is known for its focus on real-world situations and its extreme efficiency. It was derived from the street-fighting experience of Hungarian-Israeli martial artist Imi Lichtenfeld, who made use of his training as a boxer and wrestler while defending the Jewish quarter against fascist groups in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia, during the mid-to-late 1930s. In the late 1940s, following his migration to Israel, he began to provide lessons on combat training to what was to become the IDF.

From the outset, the original concept of Krav Maga was to take the most simple and practical techniques of other fighting styles (originally European boxing, wrestling and street fighting) and to make them rapidly teachable to military conscripts.

Krav Maga has a philosophy emphasizing aggression, and simultaneous defensive and offensive maneuvers. Krav Maga has been used by the Israel Defense Forces' special forces units, the security apparatus, and by regular infantry units. Closely related variations have been developed and adopted by Israeli law enforcement and intelligence organizations. There are several organizations teaching variations of Krav Maga internationally...

Jul 4, 2018 | in National Geographic

fighters training in russian samboThere are a number of martial arts styles and schools of Russian origin.Traditional Russian fist fighting has existed since the 1st millennium AD. It was outlawed in the Russian Empire in 1832. However, it has seen a resurgence after the break-up of the Soviet Union.

During the Soviet era, the government wanted to create both military hand-to-hand combat systems and combat sports, resulting in the creation of sambo. During the 1980s and after the fall of Communism the interest in the folk martial arts was reawakened. Through ethnographic study, many new styles based on the folk styles appeared.

Jul 4, 2018 | in National Geographic

koei kan karate do kanjiAbout Koei-Kan

Koei-Kan Karate-Do is a traditional system of martial art, originating in Japan. Master Eizo Onishi founded it in 1952. His teacher, Master Kanken Toyama, suggested the name "Koei-Kan" to Onishi. The basic translation of Koei-Kan, happiness (ko), prosperity (ei), and hall or house (kan), implies its underlying philosophy: "prosper with happiness toward the future." The ultimate purpose of Koei-Kan, by means of combative training and discipline, is to cultivate character. Koei-Kan is devoted to developing the spirit, and encourages the individual to find success and fulfillment.koei kan monsho and japan karate do crest

Jul 3, 2018 | in The Science of M.A.

In the martial arts community, those who practice kyusho-jitsu (pressure-point fighting) are often subjected to criticism. It all started when their self-defense moves were first brought into the limelight and onlookers didn’t even want to believe the techniques were real. Those days are long past, however, and the reality of knockouts resulting from usage of human pressure points has been convincingly demonstrated time and time again — most notably by Black Belt Hall of Fame member (and kyusho-jitsu expert) George Dillman and his students.

Nowadays, two main criticisms of kyusho-jitsu persist. The first consists of dire warnings that self-defense moves using pressure-point techniques are dangerous and that those who practice them by actually knocking each other out are reckless and foolhardy. This accusation was later found to be groundless.

Are the Self-Defense Moves of Kyusho-Jitsu Dangerous?

For decades now, the once-secret art of kyusho-jitsu has been publicly taught and demonstrated. Thousands of students now practice the methods of kyusho-jitsu, and an untold number of people have been knocked out practicing its self-defense moves, some on numerous occasions.

In 1997, at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, a team of scientists sought to examine the mechanism behind human-pressure-point knockouts. In their findings — which were reported in Black Belt’s September 1998 issue and subsequently published in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness (1999; 39:328-335) — they stated that “… no hazardous complications were demonstrated and no immediately dangerous phenomena … were noted...”

Jul 3, 2018 | in Samurai

Japanese martial arts refer to the variety of martial arts native to the country of Japan. At least three Japanese terms are used interchangeably with the English phrase "Japanese martial arts".

The usage of term "budō" to mean martial arts is a modern one, and historically the term meant a way of life encompassing physical, spiritual, and moral dimensions with a focus of self-improvement, fulfillment, or personal growth.The terms bujutsu and bugei have more discrete definitions, at least historically speaking. Bujutsu refers specifically to the practical application of martial tactics and techniques in actual combat. Bugei refers to the adaptation or refinement of those tactics and techniques to facilitate systematic instruction and dissemination within a formal learning environment.

Jul 3, 2018 | in Samurai

The life of the Samurai not only became one of discipline and military education, but a rich cultivation of the spirit and mind through the arts of writing, painting, calligraphy, philosophy, etc. It was as if a Renaissance was being experienced within their social sect. Zen provided the warrior class with personal enlightenment, polish, and refinement.

The unwritten Samurai code of conduct, known as Bushido, held that the true warrior must hold loyalty, courage, veracity, compassion, and honor as important, above all else. An appreciation and respect of life was also imperative, as it added balance to the warrior character of the Samurai. He was often very stoic with a deep and strong philosophical passion. He could be deadly in combat and yet so gentle and compassionate with children and the weak...

Jul 3, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai is a classic 300 year old book about bushido, which is the Samurai’s “way of the warrior.” There’s a lot of wisdom in the book, although all of it is not applicable to modern life. Even in the areas where Yamamoto Tsunetomo’s honor code doesn’t quite fit, it still entertains and fascinates, as you’re about to see.

Life is not so important when forced to choose between life and integrity.

If one is overly strict, his subordinates will become untrustworthy. If he over-trusts, his subordinates will become unruly.

Take a look at the men today. It seems that most of them have a woman’s heart. There are very few true men anymore. It is easy for a strong warrior to gain the advantage these days because so few have any courage at all. This loss of the warrior spirit is easily shown by the fact that men today cannot even behead a convicted criminal with his hands tied behind his back...

Jul 3, 2018 | in Samurai

ObataIf you want to be a swordsman, you have your work cut out for you. For true samurai education, you must learn how to properly handle and maintain a real blade. You must master the basic body-sword mechanics and train safely and effectively in two-person and solo forms. You must study combat strategy, etiquette and the philosophy of the warrior — all elements of the samurai code of bushido. It’s a tall order, to be sure.

For guidance in this quest for samurai education, which is one of the most popular in the martial arts, Black Belt turned to Toshishiro Obata, a renowned master in samurai training who now heads the International Shinkendo Federation in Los Angeles. Before delving into the essence of samurai education and samurai training according to Toshishiro Obata, some background information will help put things in perspective...

Jul 3, 2018 | in Sumo Wrestling
sumo wrestlers squaring off
Ready, steady ... : Sumotori face off at a morning practice session, which is easier to witness than you might think. | HARUNA MIYASHITA PHOTO
Jul 3, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
Justin Beiber and Selena Gomez
Getty Images
Selena Gomez, left, and Justin Bieber

A man claims the pop star violently attacked him as he tried to snap Bieber's picture.

 

A photographer allegedly assaulted by Justin Bieber last year is suing the pop sensation.

 

A lawsuit brought by Jose Osmin Hernandez Duran alleges that Bieber delivered a “martial arts-type kick” to the photographer’s lower rib cage and punched the right side of his face.

 

The incident is said to have occurred May 27, 2012, as a group of photographers and fans surrounded Bieber’s Mercedes Sprinter van, which was sitting in a parking space at a Calabasas shopping mall. According to the suit, Bieber was in the vehicle with his then-girlfriend Selena Gomez and was attempting to back out of the space, but he was having difficulty doing so because of the vehicle's large size...

Jul 3, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
Chuck Norris Rock Climbing
Everett Collection

"Chuck Norris isn't turning 75. 75 is turning Chuck Norris."

Chuck Norris turns 75 today, and the Internet is celebrating.

In recent years, a mythology has sprung up around the action icon, with tales about his great fetes becoming their own brand of joke and even inspiring a series of books.

See more Senior Superheroes: 19 Action Stars Kicking Butt Past 50

Predictably, the jokes have started pouring in on Norris' birthday. Check out the best (so far), which will be updating throughout the day. First up: one from the man himself.

Jul 2, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
jackie chan
'The Foreigner'

Local comedy 'Never Say Die' outperformed Chan's STX-backed action thriller, which earned $21.9 million on Saturday and Sunday.

Martial arts comedy Never Say Die came out swinging at the Chinese box office over the weekend, opening with $46.2 million on Saturday and Sunday.

The slapstick hit relegated Jackie Chan to a rare second-place finish, as his STX-produced action thriller The Foreigner opened with $21.9 million over the same two days...

 

Jun 30, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
Jet Li
Frederic Nebinger/Getty Images
Jet Li at the 2011 Venice Film Festival

Li revealed in 2013 that he was suffering from hyperthyroidism as well as a heart condition, and a litany of on-set injuries also have affected his health.

Jet Li’s appearance during a recent visit to Tibet has sparked concern for the martial arts legend's health. Pictures of an aged and frail Li shocked his fans online. Many people on social media in China and Hong Kong have been drawing unfavorable comparisons between the 55-year-old  Expendables star and someone 20 or 30 years older, according to a report in Hong Kong’s Apple Daily.

Jun 30, 2018 | in National Geographic

illustration of tied up individualHojōjutsu (捕縄術), or Torinawajutsu (捕縄術), or just Nawajutsu (縄術), is the traditional Japanese martial art of restraining a person using cord or rope (said nawa 縄 in Japanese). Encompassing many different materials, techniques and methods from many different schools, Hojōjutsu is a quintessentially Japanese art that is a unique product of Japanese history and culture.

 

As a martial arts practice, Hojōjutsu is seldom if ever taught on its own but as part of a curriculum under the aegis of the body of study encompassed by a larger school of bugei or budō, often as an advanced study in jujutsu. Whatever their source, Hojōjutsu techniques and methods are seldom demonstrated outside Japan...

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 30, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

sword cutting water"Even the finest sword, when plunged into salt water, will rust." ~ Sun Tzu

by Dr. Alex Sternberg
Jun 29, 2018 | in Masters Speak

Dr Alex SternbergDuring the past 60 years, we have seen lots of changes affecting our karate community. The technical skill of todays champions is on a higher level than the early fighters, although most old timers would argue that fighters were tougher ‘back in the day.’

In the early sixties when I started to train, very few people ever heard of or knew what karate was. When I wanted to explain to someone what I was doing I used to ask if they ever heard of Judo. Then I would explain, karate is ”very similar, with the white gi and all, but we kick and punch and not throw.” Today, with the tremendous growth in the martial arts industry, everyone is familiar with what karate is. The hundreds of movies with karate trained heroes and villains, with ninja turtles and other popular karate themed shows having created a generation of children kicking and punching and doing karate. Millions have trained in some dojo or other as there are tens of thousands of local schools teaching karate throughout the USA. 

One thing, though, has not changed with all the evolution. We still have almost as many organizations as there are dojos. In fact, I defy anyone to come up with a new name for a karate association or group that hasn’t already been taken.

As karate training has flourished many students have become senseis, masters and grandmasters. Naturally, each grandmaster is entitled to start  his or her federation and add to the already crowded  field of “alphabet soup” groups.

And what’s wrong with this picture?...

Jun 28, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
group of movie stars
Courtesy of the Shanghai International Film Festival
John Cena, Jackie Chan and Scott Waugh in Shanghai

 

THR joined the martial arts legend and WWE superstar as they met for the first time to discuss their upcoming work together in Scott Waugh's big-budget action adventure set in the Middle East.

WWE champion and rising film star John Cena flew into the Shanghai International Film Festival this week to speak alongside screen legend Jackie Chan about their upcoming action-thriller-comedy Project X.

The big-budget Hong Kong–China co-production led by Chan is entirely Chinese funded, will be filmed all in China using local crews, but with Cena as co-star and Hollywood’s Scott Waugh (Act of Valor, Need for Speed) directing from a script by Arash Amel (Grace of Monaco, Erased, The Titan).

“The highlight of this movie is really simple: we have one of the greatest legends of action working with a talented newcomer in the action genre,” says Waugh. “It’s possibly one of the greatest pairings… in terms of how the movie is stylized, it will hopefully be another level — our action will be extremely exciting.”

Set in the Middle East, the plot follows a retired Chinese military man and now private security contractor (Chan) who is sent to rescue workers from a Chinese-run oil refinery under attack. Cena appears as a former U.S. Marine who ends up helping Chan. Together they fight to defeat the attackers whose real motive — a massive oil heist — is soon revealed.

by Dr. Alex Sternberg
Jun 28, 2018 | in Masters Speak

Dr Alex SternbergJews and blacks have many shared experiences of discrimination, suffering, and poverty that has made us natural allies for many years. During the civil rights movement, many Jews and prominent rabbis participated in demonstrations and marches with Dr King and were arrested. Some Jews like Schwerner and Goodman were killed by the Klan for leading voter registration drives among poor southern blacks in Mississippi. I, however, grew up in an all black Brooklyn ghetto and learned about black life from personal experience.

In 1965, four short years after emigrating to NY from Hungary, I found myself with a summer job in Brownsville Brooklyn. The year before, Brownsville erupted in one of the most destructive riots that made the community a household name across America.  Buildings were set on fire, stores were looted and people were hurt. Many were arrested.  A year later I was a 15 year old student attending one of the most respected and rigorous Rabbinical seminaries in Brooklyn when my father got me a summer job as a ‘gopher’ in his garment factory. Most of my friends from the seminary were off to camps and vacations while I was off working in a sweat shop because we needed the money.

Shortly after the summer began, I joined a local karate ‘dojo’ on Fulton street. Needles to say, I was the only rabbinical student and was training alongside some of the hard core denizens of one of America’s poorest black neighborhoods. I was an oddity but just as I was learning about black people, they were learning about me. The students were tough physically with hard-core attitudes. We didn’t have much interaction in the beginning, as I really didn’t understand the black lingo. I showed up and trained then went home...

by Dr. Alex Sternberg
Jun 28, 2018 | in Featured Masters

Background

Dr Alex SternbergMartial arts development goes back a long way. According to legend, Bodhidharma traveled from India to China to teach his brand of Buddhism. The monks at the Shaolin monastery where he stopped to teach did not possess the physical stamina required for hours of meditation, so Bodhidharma taught them physical endurance exercises in order to increase their stamina. As the story is told, these monks became very fierce fighters as a result of these exercises and thus the origins of martial arts were born.

Over the next many centuries, the development of jiu-jitsu and subsequently karate was done in secret, handed down from teacher to pupil and often from father to son. Knowledge of this secret and powerful art was a family business, to be perfected to the highest level. Lack of preparation often resulted in severe injury and even death. Everyone trained hard to survive. Later on, warriors such as the samurai, continued training in hand to hand combat and continued the tradition of perfection of all of the techniques that they learned. To best serve their lord, the highest level of skill mastery was expected...

Jun 26, 2018 | in Martial Arts News
man training with speed bag
Photographed by Adam Amengual
The speed bag is part of Peter Berg's morning routine at his gym, Wild Card West. "For a certain type of individual, sparring is a very active form of meditation," says Berg, photo­graphed on June 5 in Santa Monica.

Box-office bombs? Pummel away mounting industry anxiety as everyone from Rihanna to Peter Berg moves from Pilates to punching and kicking. Says one martial arts trainer: "I've never been so booked in my life."

Under the gaze of a caramel-mottled pit bull named Dempsey, Peter Berg is slugging his way — literally — through his morning ritual. After a warm-up of stretching and working the bags, the Patriot's Day director is sparring with Julian Chua, a former Golden Glove champion and taekwondo black belt. Chua works as a trainer at Berg's Wild Card West Boxing Club in Santa Monica, which counts some of the biggest names in Hollywood as regulars. Padded in protective gear, Berg, 53, ducks and crouches his way around the ring, throwing a pattern of jabs, hooks and crosses at the much younger Chua. It is a surprisingly friendly affair, considering that these two men are trying to make contact with each other's face.

It's been four years since Berg opened Wild Card West with the late Garry Shandling as his partner, and he currently finds himself with an enviable problem. After years of hemorrhaging money, the boxing gym is on a serious roll. "It's going great, it's going too great," Berg tells THR. "We don't have enough parking."

Jun 23, 2018 | in Kids Martial Arts

youth martial arts demonstration breaking boards

OAKLAND, Calif. (KTVU) - Spinning roundhouse kicks, trick moves and snapping boards. First Friday this month in Oakland was electric when students from local martial arts schools performed in front of a roaring crowd for Korean Culture Fest 2018. 

Normally we choose one, maybe two, kids with standout skills to feature on That Kid’s Got Game, but this week a crew of kids caught our eye and we decided to throw them all together. So for this week’s talent, we’re featuring students from Han Martial Arts in Oakland, TG Taekwondo in Albany and Choi’s Martial Arts in Union City and Fremont.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 21, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

ninja squirrelThe Greatest victory is the one where no battle is waged.  Peace over war.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 21, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

"samurai in forestTo know the enemy, one must become the enemy." ~ Sun Tzu
May 6, 2018 | in Nutrition
fish market
Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Look at any seafood guide and you’re bound to come across the occasional red flag with an ominous warning: “High in Mercury.” Scary enough, but what exactly does that mean? Just how is mercury winding up in the fish on your plate?

 

Mercury itself isn’t a bogeyman, as it occurs naturally at low levels in rock, soil, and water throughout the world. But about half of all mercury released into the atmosphere today comes from the burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas, with contributions from waste incineration, mining, and other industrial activities. This mercury pollution falls directly into the ocean and other water bodies or onto land, where it can be washed into waterways. In this form, mercury poses little danger because living things can get rid of it quickly. But bacteria convert mercury as it’s carried down from the ocean surface, turning it into a highly toxic form called methylmercury.

 

The food chain takes it from there, as methylmercury is absorbed by phytoplankton, which are gobbled up by zooplankton, which are then feasted upon by small fish and onwards and upwards as the amount of the toxin grows in ever-accumulating quantities. The largest predatory fish in the sea, like sharks and swordfish, can have mercury concentrations in their muscles — the meat of the fish — that are 10 million times higher than those of their surrounding habitat.

May 6, 2018 | in Nutrition
cells under microscope
This picture shows HeLa cells growing in a lab dish, infected for
the purposes of research with the pathogen that causes Chlamydia.

Credit: CDC/ Joe Miller

For decades, the immortal line of cells known as HeLa cells has been a crucial tool for researchers. But the cells' use has also been the source of anxiety, confusion and frustration for the family of the woman, Henrietta Lacks, from whom the cells were taken without consent more than 60 years ago.

 

Now, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has brokered a compromise between the desire of the Lacks family for privacy and the interests of research, at least with regard to genomic sequence information taken from the cells, officials announced today (Aug. 7).

 

"In 20 years at NIH, I can't recall a specific circumstance more charged with scientific, societal and ethical challenges than this one," said Francis Collins, NIH director, at a news conference earlier today.

According to the agreement reached with the family, researchers will need to apply for access to data on the HeLa genome sequence, and receive approval from a panel that includes members of the Lacks family, according to NIH Director Francis Collins and deputy director Kathy Hudson, who outlined the plan that appears tomorrow (Aug. 8) in the journal Nature. (The cells are code-named HeLa after the first two letters of Henrietta Lacks' name.)

 

"For more than 60 years our family has been pulled into science without our consent and researchers have never stopped to talk with us to share information with us or give us a voice in the conversation about the HeLa cells until now,"Jeri Lacks-Whye, Lacks' granddaughter, said during the news conference...

May 5, 2018 | in Nutrition
steaming rice
Photo by Shutterstock.

Rice. It’s just one of the basics, right? Whether eaten on its own, or in products like pastas or cereal, this inexpensive and healthy food is a staple for Asian and Latino communities, as well as the growing number of people looking to avoid gluten.

 

Here’s the bad news (cue Debbie Downer sound effect): The food most of us think we have more or less locked down is shockingly high in arsenic. And arsenic, especially the inorganic form often found in rice, is a known carcinogen linked to several types of cancer, and believed to interfere with fetal development.

According to new research by the Consumers Union, which took over 200 samples of both organic and conventionally grown rice and rice products, nearly all the samples contained some level of arsenic, and a great deal of them contained enough to cause alarm. While there is no federal standard for arsenic in food, according to the Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, one serving of rice may have as much inorganic arsenic as an entire day’s worth of water. (They’ve also created a useful chart of various rice products, rice brands, and their arsenic levels.)

Here’s the bad news (cue Debbie Downer sound effect): The food most of us think we have more or less locked down is shockingly high in arsenic. And arsenic, especially the inorganic form often found in rice, is a known carcinogen linked to several types of cancer, and believed to interfere with fetal development.

According to new research by the Consumers Union, which took over 200 samples of both organic and conventionally grown rice and rice products, nearly all the samples contained some level of arsenic, and a great deal of them contained enough to cause alarm. While there is no federal standard for arsenic in food, according to the Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, one serving of rice may have as much inorganic arsenic as an entire day’s worth of water. (They’ve also created a useful chart of various rice products, rice brands, and their arsenic levels.)

May 1, 2018 | in Sumo Wrestling

18th Annual US Sumo Open

Could This Be the BEST EVER? 

Saturday, May 12, 2018, Main Event Starts from 1 pm (PT) 

Walter Pyramid @ California State University Long Beach

With the MOST wrestlers (60+), who have the MOST World Champion titles (7+), and the MOST World-level medals (30+), this is a tournament you've gotta see! Your location: the edge of your seat . .

Apr 30, 2018 | in Asian Arts

group of samuraiEast Asian arts, the visual arts, performing arts, and music of China, Korea (North Korea and South Korea), and Japan. (The literature of this region is treated in separate articles on Chinese literature, Korean literature, and Japanese literature.) Some studies of East Asia also include the cultures of the Indochinese peninsula and adjoining islands, as well as Mongolia to the north. The logic of this occasional inclusion is based on a strict geographic definition as well as a recognition of common bonds forged through the acceptance of Buddhism by many of these cultures. China, Korea, and Japan, however, have been uniquely linked for several millennia by a common written language and by broad cultural and political connections that have ranged in spirit from the uncritically adorational to the contentious...

Apr 16, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

Hi there,

I trust your 2nd quarter of 2018 is going way better than just good!
We've been sorting through content like a New York Times editor on a 5pm deadline getting our first book closer to complete.
So far it's got some compelling stories and content that isn't being talked about enough in leadership circles, so we're pretty excited to share this with the world.
What's the title?
Glad you asked...it's not finalized yet but it's in this direction:
 
BECOMING AN INVINCIBLE LEADER
Conquering Adversity, Inertia & Negativity to Lead an Extraordinary Life
 
It will be our first definitive work on what we call the Science of Protection of achievement and progress. 
 
It includes the latest understanding of leadership brain functioning and laws, nature's laws, to help ensure a leader is able to protect their and their teams achievement and progress.
 
Any feedback on the title most welcome!
 
Isn't being invincible impossible?...
Mar 15, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

martial artist with his opponent in a wrist lockRelson Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy/YouTube
Robin Gieseler of the Relson Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy shows a defensive move to the Trump-style handshake.

"I promise, if I meet the president, I probably won't wristlock him," the black-belt instructor for the Relson Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy says.

By now, most people have seen video of President Donald Trump forcefully shaking hands with politicians and dignitaries. 

The internet has had a field day...

 

by Emil Farkas
Mar 13, 2018 | in Featured Masters

emil farkas in his office

emil farkas in fighting stance wearing giEmil Farkas is an American martial arts instructor, author and fight coordinator. He started his martial arts career while still a youngster in Hungary where he was born. Before he was 20, he had earned his black belt in both Judo and Karate. Today Emil Farkas is one of America’s most respected senseis and he is internationally recognized as one of the top authorities on the martial arts. He holds a 7th degree Black Belt in Karate, 4th degree Black Belt in Judo and a 4th degree Black Belt in Ju-Jitsu. Farkas worked as a bodyguard for numerous celebrities...

Mar 13, 2018 | in Featured Masters

dave johnsonHistory
Professor Johnson began his journey into the world of Martial Arts in 1959. For over four decades he has studied more than a dozen styles of martial arts. In 1996 he was named “Master Instructor of the Year” by the World Martial Arts Hall of Fame and listed internationally in the Who is Who in Martial Arts by martialinfo.com. He is also a member of...

Mar 13, 2018 | in Featured Masters

tadashi yamashitaTadashi Yamashita was born in Japan in 1942, but he considers himself an Okinawan. His father died when he was three, and his mother moved to Okinawa when Tadashi Yamashita was eight years old. He lived in Okinawa until, at the age of 24, he came to the U.S.A. where he became a citizen. Sensei Tadashi Yamashita’s experience of more than 4 decades in the martial arts began at age 11. He was the roughest kid in school, and picked fights...

Mar 12, 2018 | in Featured Masters

sensei oyama and jacques"Mr. Mas Oyama amazed me with his feats of physical power, control, and speed, superhuman strength. This type of superhuman strength was not entirely new to me. I came from a part of the world that just naturally produced very strong men."

They were a gang of vicious streetfighters who liked to come into Greenwich Village on a Saturday night and pick a restaurant or club at random to terrorize. Tonight their Harley’s were parked in front of my Flamenco coffeehouse. Inside, the guitar was silent, and my waitresses and patrons were cowering, terrified. The street glittered with shards of glass from the brick the gang’s leader had thrown through the front window when the waitress protested their refusal to pay the bill. That was when my friend and I had walked in...

Mar 10, 2018 | in The Science of M.A.
Abstract
We live in two worlds, one on either side of our skin. The very survival ofthe Ninja or the hunting wild cat is dependent on their alertness and presence in both worlds. Body-Mindfulness is what I call this embodied awareness and aliveness. Its full expression is found in martial arts mastery. Body-Mindfulness is a calm, open state of present-time awareness ofinner and outer body experiences, including sensory stimulations such as pressure, touch, stretch, temperature, pain, tingling, physical movement and position in space, visual, auditory and olfactory impressions. An integral aspect of Body-Mindfulness is fascial awareness: the capacity to sense our body-wide network of myofascial tissue in stillness and in movement. We can develop this skill and build the elastic potential of the connective tissue system (Chapter l) in fine, coordinated, controlled martial training such as tai ji, karate and kung fu forms , then actualise this controlled power in explosive high speed movements. The quest for ultimate power and awareness in self-defence and attack is an ancient one. Two thousand years ago the masters, who trained tendon power, knew something intuitively that science has only recently validated. Shaolin training and tai ji masters both recognised the vital importance of conditioning and strengthening the fascia and connective tissues to build and protect the body's Qi energy (life force). Since research has shown that it is the organ of stability and the seat of our proprioception, the fascia has finally received the attention it deserves. In fact, most musculo-skeletal injuries involve inappropriate loading of the connective tissues and fascia, not the muscles. Therefore, the fascia must be considered an important factor in peak performance and training. The pioneers in the Figure 16.1 Shaolin KungFu training develops fascial strength SiFu Pierre Yves Roqueferre new fascia research define fascia more broadly than traditionally. They recognise fascia as the soft tissue component of the connective tissue system permeating the entire human body as one interconnected tensional network. It includes tendons , ligaments, joint and organ capsules, membranes , dense sheets and softer collagenous layers Chapter 16 (Chapter 1). In the new Fascial Fitness approach there is an emphasis on developing elasticity, of acknowledging the stress-responsive nature and tensional integrity of fascial tissue, of specifically conditioning and hydrating the fascia for appropriate stress-loading, as well as appreciating its recently discovered proprioceptive qualities (Chapter 11). This chapter explores some of the implications of the current research and how Fascial Fitness , attained through physical training and Body-Mindfulness, is one of the secrets for success in martial arts mastery.
Mar 10, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

warriors grappling

A mixed martial arts training session at Brian Beury Jiu Jitsu in Colonie, N.Y. | AP Photo/Mike Groll

ALBANY — A bill to legalize mixed martial arts in New York easily cleared a state Senate committee on Tuesday, the first step toward a floor vote that could come next month.

The bill passed the chamber's committee on cultural affairs, tourism and parks 10-2. State Sen. Joe Griffo, a Utica Republican who sponsored the bill, said he hoped it would clear the chamber for the seventh time before the Legislature breaks for winter recess on Feb. 9...

 

Mar 9, 2018 | in MMA Stars

2 cage fighters grapplingMixed Martial Arts is a regulated full contact combat sport between two fighters trained in various martial arts forms. Mixed Martial Arts or MMA involves both stand up and ground fighting so it employs both striking and grappling techniques from a variety of different martial arts styles such as boxing, submission fighting, catch wrestling, jiu jitsu, judo, thai boxing, karate as well as others.

Mixed martial arts are extremely popular nowadays, but in actuality MMA has been around for a very long time. As a matter of fact, mixed martial arts date back to the Greco-Roman era where the ancient martial art Penetration appeared in the Olympic Games. Many historians agree that the mixed martial arts of ancient Greece and very similar to the mixed martial arts of modern day. However, mixed martial arts of today are considered to be one of the most regulated and controlled sports in the world.

Mar 9, 2018 | in The Science of M.A.

Abstract

Martial arts are practiced in both amateur and in high professional level, stimulating scientific research in several areas of knowledge, including biomechanics. The main purpose of this review is to present the biomechanics methods used in the study of martial arts. The great importance of this study is the compilation of information science of what has already been analyzed under the biomechanics aspects related to martial arts and how this has been done. The methodology was directed to the revision of literature starting from articles, books, and seminars. From the collection of bibliographic surveys, it has been concluded that depending on the parameters studied e.g.: reaction time, speed, strength, power, among others, there is the need to apply one or more methods since there are situations in which only one biomechanical method will not be enough to answer the pointed question. It is also concluded that the investigated studies in the presented review showed the character of a descriptive examination, not directly applied to the development of techniques used on different modalities.
Mar 3, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

Jeff Unay's documentary profiles an aging mixed martial arts fighter struggling with personal and physical issues.

 

cage fighter movie coverIf The Cage Fighter were a fiction film rather than a documentary, it would feel awfully familiar. This portrait of an aging amateur mixed martial arts fighter uncannily echoes Hollywood movies such as The Champ, Rocky, The Wrestler, Raging Bull and countless others. That the real-life figure at its center seems hellbent on following a trajectory similar to those films' fictional characters gives the documentary its emotional power.

Marking the directorial debut of Jeff Unay (a visual effects veteran whose credits include Avatar and Peter Jackson's King Kong), the documentary revolves around Joe Carman, who's facing a tough time as he turns 40. Based in Washington state, Joe toils in the boiler room of a ferry...

 

Mar 3, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

scene from movie shadow

Courtesy of Village Roadshow Asia
'Shadow'

The Village Roadshow Asia and Le Vision Pictures' period film will be Zhang's first film since 'The Great Wall.'

After the costly, and ultimately disappointing, monster-packed Hollywood tentpole The Great Wall, Chinese cinema legend Zhang Yimou appears to be returning to more tried and tested material — beautifully crafted martial arts period drama.

Village Roadshow Pictures Asia offered Asian film fans a sneak peek of Zhang's much anticipated next project, Shadow, at the Shanghai International Film Festival on Monday...

by Jack M. Sabat
Feb 9, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

King Leonitus in battle"Work yourself Strong not Out."

by Jack M. Sabat
Feb 4, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

ninja flying frontkick“Instead of counting the moments that take your breath away, count the moments that left you breathless.” ~ Take Risks.

Jan 30, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

Rousey

Trailblazing UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey has agreed to terms with WWE to perform for the company as a full-time professional wrestler.

Rousey made a surprise appearance at the WWE's Royal Rumble pay-per-view in Philadelphia on Sunday night. After the conclusion of the first-ever women's Royal Rumble match, Rousey emerged and shocked the crowd.

Jan 27, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

two men shaking handsThe Japanese envoy, Takayuki Miyashita, and the Rwanda Karate Federation president, Theogene Uwayo, signed the deal on Friday. (James Karuhanga)

The Japanese envoy to Rwanda, Takayuki Miyashita, and the Rwanda Karate Federation (FERWAKA) president, Theogene Uwayo, on Friday signed a grant agreement under which the latter will receive Karate equipment.

Under the deal, signed at the embassy, Japan committed to provide US$67,372 (about Rwf57million) to purchase Karate equipment, especially 400 karate tatami mats, three scoreboards and 30 flags for local referees.

 

Jan 19, 2018 | in Featured Masters

fumio demura

Jan 19, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

mcgregor mma photo UFC fighter Conor McGregor's only fight in 2017 was a lucrative boxing bout against the undefeated Floyd Mayweather, which he lost.

NEW YORK (REUTERS) - UFC president Dana White has said that the organization's lightweight title will be put up for grabs in a showdown between interim holder Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov, casting doubts over the reign of current champion Conor McGregor.

Jan 17, 2018 | in Philosophy and History

East Asia, the region dominated by Chinese, Japanese and Korean culture, was greatly transformed following its contact with the West in the 19th century. This defining period can be considered as the start of the modern period of East Asian history, and also happens to be the time of origin of most schools of martial arts of East Asian origin practiced today. New approaches and ideas about martial arts were created that were distinct and different from previous history of martial arts, especially under the influence of nascent nationalism in the region, which took the respective traditions of martial arts as being part of the nation's heritage to be polished into a pure form and showcased.

Jan 17, 2018 | in Martial Arts News

The Bottom Line
"One of the strangest martial arts dramas ever made."

Actor-director Chapman To steps away from comedy for his sophomore foray behind the camera, anchored by Stephy Tang’s career-best performance.

man on phoneA woman dead set on securing ownership of the other half of her father’s apartment experiences a personal epiphany, if not much in the way of redemption, in The Empty Hands, a willfully oddball martial arts drama that rises above its modest station thanks to star Stephy Tang's lead performance.

 

Dec 1, 2017 | in Martial Arts News

Geoff Ho was protecting a bouncer when he was stabbed

A martial arts expert journalist was stabbed in the throat after intervening to help a bouncer who was wounded in the London Bridge terror attack .

Defiant Geoff Ho, a business editor with the Sunday Express, wrote on Facebook: "Don't know whether it was stupid or noble to jump in and break up the fight outside the Southwark Tavern, but two a***s trying to do over the lone bouncer on the door isn't happening on my watch."

 

 

Nov 25, 2017 | in Martial Arts News

Actress Meryl Streep accepts the Cecil B. DeMille Award during the Golden Globe Awards on Sunday. (Paul Drinkwater/Courtesy of NBC)

As a red-blooded American male — the sort of uber-masculine guy who spends his days watching glitzy and glamorous Hollywood shindigs to discover if the musical he enjoyed will take home any major awards — it wasn’t Meryl Streep’s attack against Donald Trump that got my dander up Sunday night. Rather, it was the moment in her acceptance speech at the Golden Globes during which she, for some reason, decided to attack forms of entertainment she doesn’t care for.

 

 

 

Nov 14, 2017 | in Martial Arts News

Empty Top reality producer Mark Burnett has teamed with mixed martial arts company ProElite Inc. to develop a primetime reality series involving the combat sport.

Nov 14, 2017 | in Martial Arts News

Courtesy of Village Roadshow Asia - 'Shadow'

The Village Roadshow Asia and Le Vision Pictures' period film will be Zhang's first film since 'The Great Wall.'

After the costly, and ultimately disappointing, monster-packed Hollywood tentpole The Great Wall, Chinese cinema legend Zhang Yimou appears to be returning to more tried and tested material — beautifully crafted martial arts period drama.

Village Roadshow Pictures Asia offered Asian film fans a sneak peek of Zhang's much anticipated next project, Shadow, at the Shanghai International Film Festival on Monday.

 

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 18, 2017 | in Philosophy and History

Our greatest weakness is Giving Up, our greatest strength is moving forward even it's painful.

by Al da Costa
Mar 2, 2017 | in Philosophy and History

The quality or state of being accountable; especially :  an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one's actions.
Everything starts here, flourishes or diminishes here…  And in the end, everything finishes here. 

Mar 1, 2017 | in Nutrition

It’s a question a lot of people have when training:

“I’m hurting after that workout yesterday, so do I ice it or use heat?”

It’s inevitable: you stretch and stay hydrated but you still sometimes get injured during a workout. So what do you do with the nagging pain, do you ice it or use heat?

Feb 28, 2017 | in Nutrition

Bio-Hack

your body.

Truly remarkable. Ketones. Ketosis.
Life changing alternative energy source.

Have you heard about Ketosis or Ketones?

 

 

by Jack M. Sabat
Feb 19, 2017 | in Philosophy and History

Over the years, I've had the opportunity to experience styles and systems that I felt had the depth and breath of real Budo.  Most of my experiences were eye opening to say the least. After training in Japan and in the Military, testing the fiber of my existence was constant, while testing my ability to rise to any occasion while getting my 'Ass' put in place by my teacher. Instead of a matted floor or hard wood, I enjoyed the bruising from a steel deck. Case and point; Come up the hard way.  How could anything else be more difficult?  Well, it was! I believe the foundation was laid that summer night in the Gulf of Tonkin off Viet Nam, where I was punished in 95 degree humid weather to defend myself against a few other arrogant Brooklyn practitioners.  A rude awakening! Snapshot forward, in USA, I found myself seeking the battle foundation in Detroit (lovely resort).

Skipping the nuances, I trained in Dojo after Dojo, and found Koei-Kan and the teacher 'OSensei' that met my Will to Survive through hardships. The unyielding & tested will to win, was drilled into every fiber...

by Jack M. Sabat
Jan 8, 2017 | in Training Secrets

martial artist utilizing sanchin breathingSanchin (三戦) is a kata of apparent Southern Chinese (Fujianese) origin that is considered to be the core of several styles, the most well-known being the Okinawan Karate styles of Uechi Ryu and Goju Ryu, as well as the Chinese martial arts of Fujian White Crane, Five Ancestors, Pangai-noon and the Tiger-Crane Combination style associated with Ang Lian-Huat. Tam Hon taught a style that was called simply "Saam Jin" (Cantonese for "Sanchin"). The name Sanchin, meaning "three battles/conflicts/wars" is usually interpreted as the battle to unify the mind, body, and spirit; however, there are other interpretations.

Jan 8, 2017 | in Training Secrets

temple gateIt is common knowledge that eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly is needed to have a healthy and strong body. Without exercise, the general condition of the body suffers. Without a healthy diet, we lack the calories and nutrients we need for physical and mental health. However, air is arguably more important that diet and exercise. Because we work hard to earn money to buy food (or work hard to grow food to eat), we have learned to value food. Air is free, and so it is easy to forget its importance, but we can go far longer without food and water than we can go without air. Breathing (along with digestion, sleeping patterns, and blood and lymph flow) is a part of the body's cyclic patterns, but is often overlooked and rarely practiced. Daoist breathing exercises are breathing practices designed to activate the diaphragm muscle, expand the lungs, and invoke the body's innate relaxation response. There are four major types of breathing (调息tiao xi) used in Daoist practice. These are natural breathing, reverse breathing, dantian breathing, and embryonic breathing. These breathing practices can be used on their own as a spiritual meditation practice, or used to compliment your martial arts training, allowing your to reach a deeper level of mental and physical health.

...

by Jack M. Sabat
Jan 4, 2017 | in Philosophy and History

 

No one said Budo would be easy, and anyone who professes it is, hasn't traveled far enough.

 

 

by Jack M. Sabat
Dec 19, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) is several levels different from the traditional Heart & Soul of Budo (traditional Martial Arts). It's more related to competition - competing in the field of combat focused on the vein of  destruction over another - versus the practice of Virtues in order to seek and discover one's true identity with the goal of self-understanding and self knowledge. In MMA the embodiment of a fighter’s mentality is rooted in fame, glory and dollars.

by Jack M. Sabat
Dec 19, 2016 | in Training Secrets

1. Began private training at the professional Koei-Kan Karate-Do academy on State St. Santa Barbara. Upon acceptance into the dojo, Liddell starting the basic program of striking / kicking / and defensive tactics in and around the traditional atmosphere of the Koei-Kan dojo.

by Jack M. Sabat
Dec 17, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

All Budo has two levels: The Heart and the Handsword - 'The Heart reflects the will and the handsword the courage to execute.'

Dec 10, 2016 | in Nutrition

apple cider videgarApple cider vinegar has been touted as a cure-all for decades. I’ve seen claims that it can do everything from halt hiccups to whiten teeth, and even banish dandruff. Whether or not it's capable of all those things, there is some solid research to back up apple cider vinegar as a healthy elixir, as long as you use it correctly.

One promising benefit: It seems to help regulate blood sugar. A study published in Diabetes Care looked at men and women with type 2 diabetes. The researchers found that when the participants downed two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar before bed with a snack (one ounce of cheese), they had lower blood sugar levels the next morning, compared to when they ate the same bedtime snack paired with two tablespoons of water...

by Thomas (Tom) Davies
Dec 3, 2016 | in The Science of M.A.
by Thomas (Tom) Davies
Dec 3, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

canadian judo

It was around 1924 that Judo was introduced on the Canadian West Coast under the impetus of and through the enthusiasm of a young Japanese Judoka, Takagaki, who was at the time a fourth Dan. He and a few fellow immigrant Japanese founded the first Canadian Dojo, for both socio-cultural and sport purposes. After a few years, Mr. Takagaki returned to Japan where he later obtained his 9th Dan...

by Jack M. Sabat
Nov 25, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

"If you're not willing to take Risk, you're taking up too much Space."

Nov 21, 2016 | in Martial Arts News
by Jack M. Sabat
Sep 11, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

Be all that you can be in a world of amazement & miracles. Continue your training in any Way that provides joy & solace. If something Budo is not working; Find a Way. Renkiohen! Remember! Fortune favors the BRAVE, and that your are! I ALWAYS remind myself of this: "An individual seldom remembers what you've said, BUT they Always remember how you made them feel!"
When you get down & feel alone; there's someone Out There thinking about you! 
Breath Deep... Sanchin is Life in motion. 

Sep 5, 2016 | in Holistic Practices

When Benjamin Franklin said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” he wasn’t speaking about martial arts injuries. However, the statement’s wisdom applies to many common martial arts injuries. Prevention must be a priority for practitioners, and that generally comes down to patience and proper training through strengthening exercises, stretching, stance and weight training, and internal and external toughening of the muscles and connective tissues...

Sep 5, 2016 | in The Science of M.A.
by Jack M. Sabat
Sep 5, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

“Logical change comes from small advantages hammered out day by day without fail. That’s one Underlying method to success among others.” Remember how you performed under pressure in the past? When you assumed, youth was there then, and Slipping away now! Perform the best way that allows you to still excel. Simply, “Find a Way!!" ....

Aug 14, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

roaring tiger“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place It will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me or nobody is going to hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit, it is about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward, how much can you take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 14, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

Remember how you never gave up? Well! Never give up ~ ever. Have Courage and believe in yourself. Stay the fight, never allowing yourself to give in to foolish emotions. Know, that in the quiet corners of life and the essence of your spirit left behind; you are remembered for your Intrepid Honor as a Budoka who makes a difference. "Weigh your Past Against the Future." "Do more towards self-empowerment.” Your past has not deterred you, detained you, defeated you, or destroyed you, when in fact: ‘its made you stronger.'

​ Believe!! ​

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 14, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

“The mind is incredible. Once you’ve gained mastery over it, channeling its powers positively for your purposes, you can do anything. I mean anything. The secret is to make your mind work for you.”—not against you. This means constantly being positive. Constantly setting up challenges you can meet—either today, next week, or next month. “I can’t…” should be permanently stricken from your vocabulary, especially the vocabulary of your thoughts. You must see yourself always growing and improving.” 

“Good things don’t happen by coincidence. Every dream carries with it certain risks, especially the risk of failure. But I am not stopped by risks. Suppose a great person takes the risk and fails. Then the person must try again. You cannot fail forever. If you try ten times, you have a better chance of making it on the eleventh try than if you didn’t try at all.” 

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 14, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

Osu!! Your future is determined by a Spartan Willingness to discipline Ones Mind & Body. So with each breath and every drop of sweat; you temper your steel and galvanize the Destiny you desire to Own! Push to Destroy any lame excuses out of your mind; hence, cross the minefield without FEAR. Become a raging Storm towards success becoming that what you've dreamed. BELIEVE! Unstoppable - Powerful beyond measure. Be SOMEBODY. Breathe deeply the gathering spiritual energy.

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 13, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

“He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.”

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 13, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

“Ask yourself what problem you have right now. Not next year, tomorrow or five minutes from now. You can always cope with the now, but you can never cope with the future. Nor do you have to. The answer, the strength and the right action will be there when you need it. Not before or after.” – 

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

chief tecumeshBy: Williamsburg Military Insider The movie Act of Valor at the end, has this amazing poem by Native American Shawnee Chief, Tecumseh. I wanted to share it with you all. As a Current Military Spouse it has a special place. It’s truly amazing and I hope that it inspires you to make this life count, to pursue noble undertakings, and live to the fullest having used all your talents and have no regrets. “So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Trouble no one about their religion; respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours. Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life. Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide. Always give a word or a sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend, even a stranger, when in a lonely place. Show respect to all people and grovel to none.​"

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

There is no place in contemporary Karate-do for different schools. Some instructors, I know, claim to have invented new and unusual kata, and so they arrogate to themselves the right to be called founders of "schools". Indeed, I have heard myself and my colleagues referred to as the Shoto-kan school, but I strongly object to this attempt at classification. My belief is that all these "schools" should be amalgamated into one so that Karate-do may pursue an orderly and useful progress into man's future. 

 Gichin Funakoshi

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

Follow not in the footsteps of the masters, but rather seek what they sought.

​Comments;  Never think you are finished.  The end of one journey is the beginning of another.  What this implies, is that once 'ONE' masters the waza - techniques in any given style, once you have mastered the ability to strategically control your destiny, once you have skillfully developed the attitude of battle ~ "Seek outside knowledge, and ADD it to the basic and advanced principles of what you have already come to understand."  Solidify your existing art.  Too many times, pupils who achieve greatness, move on.  Take new knowledge and move deeper into your existing art.  "It takes one life to learn an art, and a second life to master it."

Jack Sabat - Study

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

“There is no mystique to Tai Chi Chuan. What is difficult is the perseverance. It took me ten years to discover my chi, but thirty years to learn how to use it. Once you see the benefit, you won’t want to stop.”

by Jack M. Sabat
Aug 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

“We all have inner demons to fight. We call these demons ‘fear,’ and ‘hatred,’ and ‘anger.' If you don’t conquer them, then a life of a hundred years… is a tragedy. If you do, a life of a single day can be a triumph.” 

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 24, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

“As soon as you concern yourself with the “good” and “bad” of your fellows, you create an opening in your heart for maliciousness to enter. Testing, competing with, and criticizing others weakens and defeats you.”

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 24, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

You're gifted with amazing spirits and spartan tenacity. Because of you; others achieved greatness and Honorable recognition. Because of you, the path to achievement is honored, and your ability to translate the meaning of the ‘Way’ comes from the dynamic strength of a tenacious spirit. Your example serves as a beacon of light where one can find his or​ her way to the freedom of expression through the state of continued ​practice. By touching family & friends​,​ you've made the world a better place. Training is the source of enlightenment. The harder you practice, the more you find. 
Push to the end of exhaustion and see perhaps a glimmer of awakening.

 

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 24, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

Be like water!  Just as water, when it fills a vessel, takes the shape of that object, so should one who follows the way.  Shape yourself to the situation, be it battle or life. Be like water, adaptable, and strategize to that which is before you.  Seek a deeper understanding of the 'Way'.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 23, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

The total absence of discursive thought; a state of which the ego is forgotten and the individual is free to perform without concern for dualistic notions of good or bad, success or failure.  

Mushin is the 'essence of Zen Martial Arts.'

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 23, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

How many truly gain wisdom in martial arts, Budo?  Wisdom is the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgement; the quality of being wise.  It embodies a great sense of intelligence, and common sense, including shrewdness, smartness, judiciousness, judgement, and prudence.  It is the soundness of an action or decision with regard to the application of experience, knowledge, and good judgement.  I would ascertain, that in the Budo, one must apply himself fully and completely in every act to the end.  In training, it would mean years and years devoted to the repetition of application of technique towards perfection and one step further; 'To execute without a thought stopping the mind.'  Complete exhaustion, where the mind and body become as ONE.  
Seek wisdom by scaling the cliff of life, only focused on one thing~ Doing!! Completely!

Comment;
The Secret is to listen to the Breath during both inhaling and ​exhale.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 23, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

mountain lake

If you want to obtain the secrets of such wonderful techniques, drill yourself, harden yourself, undergo severe training, abandon body and mind; follow this course for years and you will naturally reach the profoundest levels. 
To know if water is hot or cold you must taste it yourself. ​

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 23, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

samurai with swordAlways keep your mind as bright and clear as the vast sky, the great ocean, and the highest peak, empty of all  thoughts. Always keep your body filled with light and heat. Fill yourself with the power of wisdom and enlightenment.
     Morihei Ueshiba

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 23, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

Don't fall victim to your emotions. They have the ability to shut you down. Fill your mind with positive energy and thoughts that create action. Create your destiny with a clear perception of your goals and never look back. You can not change the past. Focusing on the past only can Immobilize you in the present. 
Simply this: "Get on with living or get on with dying." Your dreams are what make you go. Light it up! 
Kill negative thinking with affirmative thoughts and win the fight against fear.

Jack Sabat

Jul 23, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

drawing of samurai“We can no longer rely on the external teachings of Buddha, Confucius, or Christ. 
The era of organized religion controlling every aspect of life is over. No single religion has all the answers. 
Construction of shrine and temple buildings is not enough. Establish yourself as a living buddha image. We all should be transformed into goddesses of compassion or victorious buddhas.” ― 
John Stevens, The Art of Peace

Jul 23, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

samurai drawing“Aikido is the Way of Harmony. It brings together people of all races and manifests the original form of all things. The universe has a single source, and from that core all things emerged in a cosmic pattern.
At the end of WWII, it become clear that the world needed to be purified of filth and degradation, and that is why Aikido emerged. In order to eliminate war, deception, greed, and hatred, the gods of peace and harmony manifested their powers. 
All of us in this world are members of the same family, and we should work together to make discord and war disappear from our midst. 

Without Love, our nation, the world, and the universe will be destroyed.” ― 
John Stevens, The Art of Peace

Jul 17, 2016 | in Holistic Practices

Tai Chi, a form of Chinese martial arts often practiced for its health benefits, may be an effective treatment option for patients who suffer from dizziness and balance disorders (also known as vestibular disorders).

In a paper presented at the 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO in San Diego, researchers evaluated the utility of Tai Chi...

Jul 17, 2016 | in Holistic Practices

kombuchaBenefits Including Gut Health, Immunity, Cancer-Fighter, and even helps with Weight Loss? 184 Healthy organic kombucha superfood probiotic drink in glass on white background by Cat Ebeling & Mike Geary co-authors of the best-sellers: The Fat Burning Kitchen & The Top 101 Foods that Fight Aging I actually fell in love with the tangy, sweet/sour, bubbly awesomeness about ten years ago, and have been addicted ever since. Barely a day goes by when I don’t pick up a bottle or pour myself a glass from my home brew. It has an amazing taste, and really does make you feel happier and energetic...

 

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 12, 2016 | in Martial Arts News
by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 9, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

river and rocks

You "Face your Greatest Opposition when you're closest to your Biggest Miracle." We are subjected to risks each day where fate takes the Reins. Choosing the right path with common sense & the Help of Faith is what we're left with. Train to find Reason!! 

Challenge the self! 
Fighting the slippery slope w optimism is a frustrating Journey but doable. .  
Stay in Health & continue the Battle w a strong HEART.
Seek new mountains & Cross calm waters. Fight the Storms of Adversity & DO NOT GIVE UP or GIVE IN.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 4, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

Our world is in a state of crisis. There will always be chaos and conflict As there always has been.

The idea, is to approach all those conditions as a means to adjust or adapt.

In times such as these, there are always opportunities, go and seek them.​

One can not control others, however, one has the power to change how he appears​ in​ life and change oneself based on discipline. 

Reach out to your brothers, and cultivate a greater sense of caring based on gratitude. Look at the big picture.

Practice to know yourself through austerity and the unlimited abilities one is capable of creating and remember; 

We are all connected.
Raise your consciousness to "Live like a feather on the breath of God."
Jack Sabat

japenese structure

by Jack M. Sabat
Jul 4, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

"Ishin Denshin"  One Heart ~ One Mind

Connection: Everything you do affects those connected in your life. Once an act is finished, you can not take it back. It’s vested in the matrix. Consider all the greatness you've created and  your unselfish Generosity. Look up stoicism and in training , coming  from the heart; develop a spartan attitude. Remember: You never start to learn until you learn to carefully listen. Smash overzealous egos and allow oneself to absorb, while deleting the useless .

"Stay in the Heart of Budo" "Reach Out". sand garden

Jul 4, 2016 | in Training Secrets

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 26, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

kanji"The tallest trees have to withstand the strongest winds."  

Note: When an individual strives to lead others and takes a position of authority when prepared, he must also learn to tolerate and temper the resistance that challenges him.  Simply, anyone can scream on the bottom, however, on the top there's little room.  Strive to climb to the summit and be on Top.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 26, 2016 | in Philosophy and History
female martial artist with sword"Affirmations only work if you have the underlying structure/system to build upon" 
Note;  It is by design, that the results fostered by the mind ie; confidence/self-esteem, understanding/compassion and other virtues are understood and developed by the act of repetition.  With repetition, one can solidify self-belief in UNION with affirmations.
by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 26, 2016 | in Philosophy and History
young frost breaking concreteSHU is expressed by an ideograph meaning "practice" ​and/or study.  
GYO is represented by a pictograph conveying crossroads.  Each day we come to crossroads in training as well as in other walks of life. 
To Quit or Continue???
It is at these times in our practice of the martial way, to recognize the beginners
mind/spirit (shoshin) so as to rejuvenate oneself through purification of hard work.
It is for this reason that special forms of austerity, severe, rigorous training is referred to as shugyo.
One can and should use shugyo to forge and hone oneself in ways aimed at the self-disciplines.
Brian Frost 'O'Sensei
by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 26, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

harbor with lightening

'If you are not moving forward, you are slowly inching backwards from whence you came.  So plan on hanging on the edge, because if you're not, you're taking up too much of my space and others'.'

Jack Sabat

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 26, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

orion nebula"Sometimes; the most gifted students have to take the most abuse because they have the most to offer." 

This also means, delivering the most sincere consideration to the heart of the matter for the preparation for life battles/struggles/ and austerity.  However, this should be explained in detail to the practitioner.  Hard on the outside ~ Soft on the inside.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 12, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

sunset

Know that with each driving attempt to master your skills; you become a stronger man (HERO WITHIN).

"Knowledge is a measure, but practice is the key to it."

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 12, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

machine samurai"Don't try to fix yesterday & get distracted by a place you'll eventually leave." Push to the highest & purest level of self cultivation through the demanding act of training.

by Bill Wallace
Jun 11, 2016 | in Masters Speak

Bill Wallace PhotosBill ‘Superfoot’ Wallace is a kicking legend. With his kicks clocked at over 60mph, and the ability to throw a hook kick, roundhouse (turning) and sidekick from the same chamber, he was as great a pioneer in kicking as Bruce Lee was in concepts.

Such was his influence in kicking, that many people now use his chamber without realising where it came from in the first place.

With an active career spanning more than 30 years, Bill is still as good a kicker now, as he was when he started. His view on training however, has moved with the times.

“I don’t want to do the same things that I’ve done before. My body just doesn’t do the things that I used to do. Number two, my ideas have changed, my priorities have changed. When I was younger all I wanted to do was workout, spar, and fight. And now there are other things to do. Your priorities change as you get older. Your body changes and gets different. But I still love it.”

These conflicting priorities are otherwise known as ‘life’. Fortunately, Bill used his nimble footwork to out manoeuvre life, and still gets to train whilst working, “I do seminars every weekend and that’s when I get to do my workouts. That’s my job. I get paid to work out. It’s perfect, I’m having fun.”

Having fun whilst training in the martial arts, is one of the most overlooked but important, factors. If you’re not having fun whilst training, then it becomes a chore. If you’re losing students, it could well be due to apathy or (more likely) they’ve become bored and disenchanted.

This certainly isn’t the case for Bill as he explains: “I find the training is still great. I don’t like to fight as much as I used to, I’m 61 years old. I like to have someone come out and say to them ‘okay, now you block this kick’. I’ll show them where it’s going and have them try to block the kick. Then I move onto the creation of a combination, so I have the guy able to block the first technique and hit him with something else. That’s the fun part of it.”

Hearing Bill say this took me back a few years to when I was watching a VMA release. Bill was teaching a seminar, and called Bob Sykes out to the front of the class. Doing exactly what he said above, he threw an excellent combination that ended with a good clock to the chin. He had a grin on his face all the way through...

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 4, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

lake and mountainsI believe that austerity and unfortunately tragedy offers a great lesson. 
One simple thing always exists: We can't control how or when nature may take our lives! 
We can control how we live in the moment and in some cases how we die, however, not when. 
Once Gifted with wise insight from training, Continue to move into the light & be proud of your devoted contributions toward human enrichment. 
Cast malice from your heart.
Galvanize the bonds (kizuna) that strengthen the unification of your brotherhood. 
Win battles against​ the self and all others will tend to become unimportant. Train each day on the B​udo path.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 4, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

"Do every act in your life as though it were your last."
Marcus Aurelius ~ Romanmountain wilderness

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 4, 2016 | in Philosophy and History
samurai slashing with swordThe total absence of discursive thought; a state in which the ego is forgotten and the individual is free to perform without concern for dualistic notions of good or bad, success or failure.  Mushin is the essence of Zen in Martial Arts
 
Comment: The mind of no-mind reflects the thought of nothing.  No thoughts or if a thought is held, it means the mind momentarily stops.  In battle, this is the point where hesitation produces disaster or death.  Keep the mind free.  How? through the actions of repetition.
by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 4, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

lake and mountains

Remember that skill outweighs luck by vast divides. Luck is not an intention. It is by skilled Practice that true science of strategies “Heiho” are realized. Allow your mind to wander while executing Technique. Simply, the first thing one must do is visualize what is going on with the body. 
Think through the body, by focusing the mind in the physical movement. 
Step outside and Look at yourself. 
If you are honest and aware, you can see the weaknesses and make corrections In order to build the perfect weapon and in the end, the perfect form. 
“Kata is everything, hence, It is the way of doing things” 
 
Comments; Pound away at the foundations of the system. 
Master the basics and the principles rather Than being a mindless fool. 
Study the waza- techniques and become invincible through austerity.   ​
by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 4, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

kendokaBe in the game with pain rather than sitting on the sidelines. Reach out to your brothers and bare no resentments. 

Don’t wine, and make up excuses. ‘Win without boasting – Loose without excuse.’ 
No one said Budo would be easy. It is the very thing that makes you brave and courageous. 
Don't allow ego or excuses to substitute your will to win in tough times. ‘Tough times don’t last, tough people do.’ 
We are champions. Solidify the mind through right thinking and be that what you Wish to be, not who you want to be. 
Set the standard and follow your discipline Through all extremes. 
 
Comments: Set Goals and experience the sea of changes.
by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 2, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

snowy mountain topsKata allows us to master 'mushin' no mind. The thought of no-thoughts.

Active meditation- ie: DoZen or the clear mind when the physical body is engaged In a pattern or battle. The zen-mind challenge allows us to take a break in mental chaos as it relates to normal life among other reasons. Our kata are similar to many others. Our kata simply connects the traditional aspect of age-old systems and styles. The development of ‘Budo’ is a means to an end in the vein of all karate do. Everything is ‘Kata.’ Train with it, use it, and master it! 

Comment: When your physical ability no longer supersedes the senior students, re-focus on the practice of Kata. Results are found in the secrets of Heiho ‘strategy’ and Kata’s hidden hand expressions.

 

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 2, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

If you do not seek the light you remain in darkness? Therefore, one must practice to lighten the way out of darkness (doubt).

Questions pertaining to the thought provoking nature of budo should be stimulated by each Budoka. 

Martial arts is more than punching – kicking – striking – and fighting. It’s called ‘finding a way’ or seeking peace through austerity.

It's like "what's next?" My answer is: ‘Execute another 5000 punches’ or train in the forest for 24 hours without any outside contact. 

Simply, but aggressively, push to the edge. 

Note: without deep thought through self challenging mastery, an emptiness remains.

Comments: Most of the time, the practitioner does what they must in order to find specific 'degrees' of effectiveness aimed at skills. 

True realization is not going to happen unless one pushes to the edge of the void.sword forging

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 1, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

mountains and lake scenery"Always Shine" like the sun reflecting against the blade of a sword – Nippon-to Make a difference in life, knowing that what you do affects others And bears significance to those you touch both directly and indirectly. Don't just work - Live to be a better Man ‘practitioner’ Reach out and encourage peace to your brothers Remember; we are all the sum of our thoughts. You are what you think And what you believe. Seek the higher levels of Budo by training to Exhaustion. It is then and there, in the grasp of a breath, you find enlightenment.

by Jack M. Sabat
Jun 1, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

man surrounded by water1. Respect others, even if they don’t respect you. Later in life they may remember that respect. 

2. Live with your whole heart. It may be broken, but you can’t say that you never loved. 

3. Treat animals with kindness and it will be repaid to you a hundred fold. 

4. Be Honest with the people you love. Honesty is the best policy. 

5. Admit your mistakes; it shows you are human 

6. Learn from your mistakes, but don’t dwell on them. Negative thinking will only make you depressed – and that’s not good for you or those around you. 

7. Tell your family that you love them. You never know when it may be the last time you get to say it. 

8. Never tell others that their dreams are worthless or dumb. Each of us are entitled to our own dreams and beliefs. 

9. Realize that the only person you can change is yourself. 

10. Be thankful for what you have. Knowing you are blessed isn’t arrogant if you’re truly thankful for your blessings. 

by Jack M. Sabat
May 30, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

glacier above water surface, giant glacier beneath; kata and bunkai"The purpose of training is to Tighten up the Slack, Toughen the Body & Polish the Spirit" OSensei Ueshiba 
"The difference between winning & loosing is in the Preparation"  Preparation for Battle must be more intense than Battle itself. 
"Intelligence of the brain is consciousness - Consciousness in motion without holding a thought is Zen"
Comments:
When one is tough enough to take full blows to the Body, one is Strong enough to take anything in Life. 
"Fear is no more than an Illusion" "Use Fear to Push You to the summit and eventually make you Rise". Be Inspired.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 21, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

enso - circle of enlightenmentReal Warriorship is doing what you say!! Study boldly. Getting older is inevitable /However,  aging is Optional. What's truly Right & Best about You is what you Are. Be the powerful change You want to MANIFEST in the world. This way, you can MASTER living the way you envision.  Everything starts w an idea & the power OR MAGIC in an idea is that you can't Kill it. IT remains to be Great or Stagnant. I go through my Budo practice passing the knowledge & eventually the 'Colors' to those who have the abilities to master life & spread Koeikan. From Master to Student to a LEGACY. Never loose sight of the summit. Your SENSEI is proud of you. Be Somebody

by Jack M. Sabat
May 21, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

riverOur Well Being is dependent on the Well Being of Others! Osu!! Use the Skills of MARTIAL arts to elevate your psyche toward  phenomenal levels. The secret; is to MANIFEST 100%+ self believe by executing each technique w precise accuracy & driving Force. Don't flinch / Don't hold back / Risk everything to become Something greater than the Self. What comes from the Heart always goes to the Heart. Don't allow outside pressures to take you Down;; instead Rise up & like a Spartan, be that brick in THE Wall. You are gifted w all the talented tools. However, If the ONLY tool you have is a hammer, then every problem will be treated like a Nail. If you want to ACHIEVE Greatness through Budo,  be tenacious, and REACH out to your BROTHER & lift him up w Your inner FIRE (Care). Eventually after the STORMs of life pass, we'll all meet again. Sanchin- the Way to Peace // Zensho- to live Completely. Remember: Everything you do has Great Significance.
Quote "Fear is a product of our imagination - A future thought of what's to come." Fear is a choice. Danger is Real!

May 20, 2016 | in Martial Arts News
by Jack M. Sabat
May 13, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

bruce lee in fighting stanceZANSHIN

Zanshin is a word commonly used throughout the Japanese martial arts and refers To a state of relaxed mental alertness. Literally translates as; Zanshin “the mind with no remainder.” In other words, the mind is completely focused on action and fixated on the task at hand. Zanshin is being constantly aware of your body, mind, and surroundings without stressing Yourself. It is an effortless vigilance on what may or may not come. In martial arts practice though, zanshin has an even deeper meaning. Zanshin is choosing To live your life intentionally/fully, and acting with ‘deliberate purpose’ rather than mindlessly falling Victim to whatever lies before you or chance. o'sensei kaloudis breaking stack of bricks with his headIt is also known as the state of mind before – during – and after a demanding situation. Going into Battle or a difficult task where the body may be at risk. It’s the feeling at the end of a major Challenging ordeal. The ‘Ahhh’ moment of success and/or survival. Zanshin is what you are During Battle / Battle Engagement / survival in action; This is Zanshin Gratitude Know how much your appreciated.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 13, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

o'sensei kaloudis breaking bricks on o'sensei frost with a sledgehammerYour history in Budo and challenging achievements or successes should not be taken lightly. Your abilities and skills are reflective of your determination to win and control your destiny. In order, to challenge the inner monsters and bridle the positive nature of your soul, you must force oneself to train. You just can’t give in, give up, or allow failure to stand in your path.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 13, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

path through lush green forrestKeep your Japanese sword ‘Nippon-to’ sharp. Train as though you may enter the field of combat each day, and never look back. It begins with a vision of greatness. That becomes your journey which starts with an idea. You can't kill a great Idea.

Appreciation Thank you for your contributions to the United Spirit of Koei Kan Karate-Do. You make me realize that we all belong to something greater than ourselves! Something that took Root long ago. A modern day art found out of ancient rituals (reigisaho) Ability and skill is what you are capable of executing relative to thousands of repetitions. Motivation determines what you do and attitude determines how well. This is devotion to task. Build our family with unconditional acceptance of each other. An unselfish heart is master over the ego. Always something new!

by Jack M. Sabat
May 13, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

samurai in armor on the battlefieldThere is much to learn. Remember this clear vision based on emotional connection breeds emotional genius. We need sincere Mentors who are always reaching. "I'm still Learning" & if we care; We must never give up.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

teacher watching to students battle with swordsYudanshakai: Warriors and Spartans of Budo Know that your unselfish efforts to serve practitioners Without consideration to personal gain reflect the authentic aspirations of real humanitarians. Our bonds or kizuna (ties as brothers) is the glue that mirrors each one’s persona. "Success is not final- Failure is not fatal- it is the courage to face the enemies of the soul and to continue that counts." Believe in your dreams & aspirations by looking into yourselves. 

Comment: Don’t strive on who you want to be, but more on what you want to be. Challenge the self.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

 

group of monks hanging upside down meditatingThe mind always fights the body. Regarding courage: I've taught students with disabilities. blind/one leg/ one arm/ cerebral palsy/ burn victims/ & others who fight the winds of adversity. They always attack that which attempts to hold them back.

"What comes from the Heart, Goes to the Heart."

Great enterprise comes from hard Austerity training and painful sweat. Make training & your teacher your best friend & the Heavy bag your worst enemy. Karate will never let you down..! 

Comments: The mind strives to return to familiarity.  Simply, you must force it to go against itself and Will; thereby developing a body that responds to positive influence.  If not, you are always left as victim to your circumstances. Change the mind by changing the thoughts.  Make it through the pain.  Welcome adversity.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

bruce lee with fire behind himWarriors! "Without knowledge skill cannot be focused, Without skill, strength cannot be brought to bear, Without strength, knowledge cannot be applied." ~ Alexander the Great

When you do not rise to the level of your expectations "You fall to the level of your training." In practice become the unstoppable entity with no regard for fear! Turn up the heat and walk on Fire!! Be a Hero..

Comments: Regarding practice ~ Attack your practice as though fire raged in your hair. Push to exhaustion and find your peace after the battle. Fight as though it was impossible to fail!!

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

temple on top of a mountain with waterfall in backgroundReaching the Pinnacle: First you need a clear destination, Then a game plan, then an action plan, then bench marks, and finally, an unstoppable self belief including daily actions with affirmations. If one follows these principles, an iron will tempered by training will absolutely  become reality. "You are the sum total of your thoughts." Lastly: Let nothing stand in your path! Galvanize one's Will in the face of your challenge. "Trust is a great thing but trusting yourself is even greater." 

Hardships & failure work hand in hand when striving towards success. Taking the hits is the strategic magnificence of rising over & over to win in your mission. We are blessed as Y​udansha (Black-Belts)​ with a sense of reason & practical leadership. Most importantly we are the custodians of our Budo Journey.

Comments:
When one decides to create change in life; it must be final. A strongly shaped strategic plan must match your goals. Most of all, one​'s lifestyle should reflect your Values.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

group of monks climbing tall mountain stairs"If you want to produce something great in your life. You must start now by aligning yourself with powerful people who push you to rise. Strive to get on top in life because its overcrowded on the bottom." If you are not willing to take risks, you are not willing to grow. Your history is the tale of the tape. Empower your growth by climbing to higher ground. Remember: if there's no enemy within, the enemy outside can do us no harm. 

"Fight for the Light.” Never give up in life no matter what it is. Always keep moving forward. Keep pushing hard until you reach your dream. Execute action without hesitation. Remember you can't afford the impact of a negative thought. The best thing that happened to you came from one thought of determination! 

You are no longer getting by. You are leading the charge and acting by example.  Bust out of darkness into greatness black belt. 

Comment: The above quote can be used as an affirmation read upon rising and/or prior to a difficult situation.  Find the best affirmation to launch your heart and soul in the Right Light.

 

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

temple on mountainBuild yourself a warrior's code. This is the moment you find out who you really are!! The talents are there hidden under your dreams and skills. Be the strongest sword with the greatest vision and will. Adversity makes the weak strong & the strong stronger. Make Adversity your friend & go beyond the Normal. When you do more than expected You excel to excellence. Kill negativity & reach for unchartered challenges. Nothing great ever comes easily. Live close to the edge and leave room for others to shine. TaSumo Fighters Doing Battleke Charge!! It’s all about who you become. No one can take that away and don’t settle for average. Connect the dots and without delay, Train!! Say Yes to your dreams. The philosophy of Budo serves as guide to life laws. Use them well. Find the thoughts and goals that motivate your spirit and never look back.

Comments: The Universe will respond to you and support your quest.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

drawing of a warrior with weaponsRemember how strongly you have been created: Train, train, train, and stay in faith based on reason & sensible moral ethics. Everything great is only predicated on determined discipline & the love of life liberty & the pursuit of challenges. I never lose sight of my will to know who & what I'm made of. I just Practice!! Endlessly…. Find your element! Look for the best Environment that best Unlocks your potential! That place is your mental state of Goals and Skills fostered by attitude. Know this: you are Yudanshakai, "the culmination of gut wrenching years of Practice." Stay in the Element of your Budo!! Be the conduit of unlimited but bridled physical courage. 

Comments: Powerful people recognize potential in others. Recognize the potential in you and Remember: no matter how difficult the climb, I’m going to make it!

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History
beautiful geology in natureHello Butaedo Warriors!

More quotes from J.Sabat Shihan philosophy and others guiding us to the top of Mt. Fuji.

To fully understand oneself, one must combine both budo & bujitsu. Old Bujitsu (military) Waza (technique-training) when combined with modern day application and virtues are the only real way to cultivate the inner self and strength of spirit. Never stop training, and always seek knowledge for higher learning. I never began to learn, until I shut down my ego, and began to listen openly. Investigate – research – and test your skills for more than conceptual practice, and go the way of ‘reality training,' step into the lions pit. Reach for the stars! ‘Seek wise council by Query’ and in training go the Way of most Resistance and then in life, Go the way of least resistance. Extend your Ki and reach out for the hidden aspects of your budo.

Comments: Satori – enlightenment comes and goes. There may only be a glimmer, a clue, or it may be Staring you in the face, but the answers are found in quiet moments of contemplation and more so in the Heat of pushing oneself to the brink of failure. Just Go for it!!

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

tiger“Logical change comes from small advantages hammered out day by day without fail. That’s one Underlying method to success among others.” Remember how you performed under pressure in the past? When you assumed, youth was there then, and Slipping away now! Perform the best way that allows you to still excel. Simply: “Find a Way!!" A smart martial artist knows when To change direction based on the cause and effect of nature. "Hane no Tate Mae" ~ the difference between what you say & what you do!! Once you decide to do only what You say, those thoughts become imprinted within and nothing can stop you towards your goals. What you do, the mark you make, those you touch, goes a lifetime - not what you say. You are your thoughts, ie: thoughts are your first mover. Trust your budo. Trust in your art and be bold, however, remain open-minded. You are never alone!! 

 
Comments: Take your habits to the next level and allow your behavior to shape and manage your destiny. 

This is a discovery moment – use it wisely!!

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

martial artist smashing stack of bricks with elbowBudo: Japanese translation for ‘philosophy’ is ‘Tetsu-gaku.’ You gotta be stronger/ wiser/ better/ tougher/ and together. Be the change you want to see in the world. Stand proud in your beliefs but remain ever flexible as bamboo (taki) in your thinking. Enter the battles with the unstoppable will to win. Know this: you are a Black-Belt and an example for others to follow! That is a somebody! And Don't wine or complain. What you do signifies what you are and points you in the direction of what destiny you desire. Years of practice should not be considered lightly. Re-energize profound and defined practices! Stay young - Stay strong - Stay focused. Surround yourself with influence that comes from successful entities in support of your dreams. Remember: "Great things come from small beginnings." Smash egos and reach out to the stars. Always Present Always Ready. 

Comments: Practice Fighting over and over again, attempting to Galvanize the mind-body-and spirit.

by Jack M. Sabat
May 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

ninja standing by riverYudanshakai: Those of Black-Belt level "Trusting in self is an act of self belief, while ​Trusting in others completely is always an expectation rarely found." Lift yourself to higher standards so you may be trusted in your selfless acts of compassion; hence Inflated egos create a defensive persona & shackles growth. You are a Force that outsiders wish they could match as few ever do. Strength/Honor/Adaptation/ & Acceptance is an ongoing practice of life. After all, you are Blackbelts.

Comments: Realization as enlightenment comes through the training habit of Repetition - Renma (To Polish)

As the body and the technique become perfected, so it is with the mind.

May 1, 2016 | in Holistic Practices

li ching-yuen

According to the official records, herbalist Li Ching-Yuen was born in China in 1677 (although he himself claimed that he was born in 1736). Throughout his long life, he constantly practiced herbalism and martial arts. In 1930, the New York Times newspaper printed an article in which they published official Chinese government documents that were uncovered. These documents, dating back to 1827, contained official congratulations on Li Ching-Yuen's 150th birthday. Later documents, dating back to 1877, contained official congratulations on his 200th birthday.

How did he do that?

May 1, 2016 | in Training Secrets

When most people think of recent Iron Palm Masters the only person who comes to mind is Lee Ying Arng the author of “Iron Palm in 100 days”. Of course we all know the legend of Ku Yu Cheung also called Ru Gu Zhang in Mandarin. But somebody who has gone under the radar is Sifu James McNeil. Sifu McNeil is really a legend in his own right, for years he has instructed his students at his Little Nine Heaven Taoist Institute in various styles of Kung Fu and of course Iron Palm techniques. Sifu McNeil has demonstrated over the years similar techniques and power as the legend himself Ku Yu Chueng.

Apr 16, 2016 | in Training Secrets

two shadowy figures battling with swordsKenjutsu, as opposed to Iaido and Kendo is the art of using a live blade in combat. It is not a sport or 'do' (way). In medieval Japan, the Kenjutsu practitioner's focus was on cutting down an opponent without sustaining any injury to himself. Like any type of live blade work, the situation was do or die, therefore, the swordsman must be sure that when the blade strikes in the heat of battle it cuts clean and sure from whatever posture or position they are in. Although this has little application in today's society, serious students of sword work should focus on the intent of the sword rather mimic the actions. One practical application of the sword today is in tameshigiri. Tameshigiri is literally test cutting, but it is not enough to statically cut a straw target. Tameshigiri should also be a test...

Apr 10, 2016 | in Training Secrets

An excerpt from "The Japanese Way of the Artist" by H. E. Davey


Kata

If the Ways can be considered philosophies, then they are “philosophies” with a physical expression, or philosophies discov­ered through their physical expression. Chado (tea ceremony), shodo (calligraphy), kado (flower arrangement), and others can be thought of as Ways of art and life whose physical expression is keiko, or “practice.” But what constitutes keiko and why? Let us turn to kata, which are the means through which the Ways are practiced.

Kata means “form,” in the sense of a prearranged form or formal pattern. In shodo, students strive to make exact copies of tehon, which are either books of classic calligraphy or samples of their sensei’s brush writing. In sumi-e, “ink painting,” every novice copies a spe­cific painting and isn’t allowed to progress to the next subject of study until the copy is exact. In the tea ceremony, chado disciples must work through a set series of rituals two centuries old, and in the martial Ways, practitioners endlessly repeat established com­bat sequences.

Yet even in Japan, there are those who claim that, in the mar­tial arts, for example, fixed, predictable kata do not correspond to real-life combat. Similar comments could be made regarding the kata of many Japanese arts, not just budo. And these critics are correct in that the kata of any Do are artificial to the extent they are predetermined. They are incorrect, however, in supposing that practicing kata is inefficient and cannot lead to spontaneous action. 

Apr 7, 2016 | in Philosophy and History

You can use these quotes to help motivate you during your training!

 

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COLOMBO, May 30 (Xinhua) - One man attacks while the other energetically parries and the rest watch in tense silence. The practice session is of Angampora, the ancient Sri Lankan martial art that has been practiced for thousands of years and is still taught in traditional schools around the country.

The ancient art Angampora centers around unarmed combat where...

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Martial Arts in Ancient China

Kung-Fu is the most ancient of all martial arts and it is possible to trace its roots back more than 4,000 years. The earliest form of Chinese martial arts were those practised by soldiers for direct use in battlefield combat. Ancient legend states that weapons and hand-to-hand martial arts’ techniques were propagated by China’s Yellow Emperor. Before he rose to...

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Too many karate-ka today relegate kata to a secondary status behind practice of kumite. This is a mistake. This view, I believe, represents a profound misunderstanding of kata’s role and purpose.

Kata should instead be the foundation of karate training. Why? Three Points of discussion:

- Philosophy & Zen
- Relationship to sports karate
- A time chest of advanced self defense techniques for black belts

Kata allows students to share a pool of knowledge which the greatest karate-ka of the past, and present, have used to study the Way. The kanji (Chinese character) for kata can be interpreted as a pictograph representing a bamboo lattice window. Sunlight can shine through such a window leaving a pattern which is defined by not only light but also the presence of shade.

This “Yin-Yang” essence in kata is noted in such opposites as fast/slow, hard/soft & still/movement. For example, at the...

Dec 14, 2015 | in Training Secrets

woman kicking assailantIt is true that In California the law allows a person to kill an assailant in self-defense.

But, are these two statements true or false?

In California, a person claiming self-defense...

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2015 sumo group shot

2015 US Sumo Open Overview

The 2015 US Sumo Open returned to the Walter Pyramid on August 8, 2015. Nearly 4,000 fans watched history being made, as Byamba's 8-year streak of gold medals was ended at last by Ramy Elgazar (Egypt) and Roy Sims (USA). In fact, until the final match of the day, all 29 previous heavyweight and openweight gold medalists (for 15 years) had been foreigners, but with a victory in the openweight finals, Roy Sims entered the history books as the first American EVER to win a US Sumo Open gold medal in either the men's heavyweight or men's openweight divisions!

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"Courage is the foundation of Risk ~ Nothing transforms without Courage"

We’ve all been there. You spend hours upon hours of throwing punches (tsuki-waza) in the dojo. You’re laser focused on perfecting technique, bag contact, snap-back and control. The problem is you’re just not getting any more power or speed. As karate-ka we spend the majority of our training time...

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One of the key factors for any athlete is staying injury free. There have been many articles written on the subject and this article will differ in the concentration of three key factors. Preparing the mind, the body and the soul for battle. As martial artist we differ in many respects then other athletes and in that vain this article will focus on the martial artist.  The mind is a powerful weapon and as any other part of the whole it must be cultivated in such a manner that failure is not an option...

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japanese art

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O'Sensei Brian Frost‘O’Sensei Frost held an 8th degree black-belt (Hachi-dan) and an International Instructor’s Certificate in Koei-Kan Karate-Do. A strong advocate for old style martial arts, ‘O’Sensei Frost trained in Boxing, Okinawan Karate, Judo, and eventually Koei-Kan Karate-Do.

Sensei Frost trained as Uchi-Deshi (live in student) under the tutelage of the founder of Koei-Kan Karate-Do, ‘Kancho Eizo Onishi’. ‘O’Sensei Frost served as the Chief Technical Instructor and National Director for Koei-Kan Karate-Do in the United States. 1972, ‘O’Sensei Frost captured the All Japan Koei-Kan Championship held in Kamata Sports Stadium in Tokyo, as well as competing and demonstrating the art of Koei-Kan world-wide. His efforts took Koei-Kan to Venezuela / Spain / Italy / Greece / and England. For over 40 years of experience in Karate, ‘O’Sensei Frost was the guiding force that light the way in the promulgation of Koei-Kan system...

Sep 30, 2015 | in Martial Arts News