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The modern grading system is a very recent innovation within the martial arts. In the early days of Kyokushin in Japan there were no coloured belts, just white and black, and there was no expected grading time for a student, people graded when they were told to, and often waited up to six months for their result. Anyone that has achieved a black belt in a genuine Kyokushin organisation will tell you that it means a great deal to them, because the road is hard and long.
Ultimately, it is the person wearing the belt that counts, not the belt itself. In order to learn how to fight, you need to fight. Much is said these days about safety in training. Our politically correct, health and safety obsessed society seems to suggest that we can achieve great things with virtually no risk, and it is common for martial arts clubs to pitch safety as a selling point.
However, if a person has managed to progress to a high level without ever having been hurt or afraid then they will be woefully unprepared for the reality of real confrontation. Koshki pioneer, Masayuki Hisataka, 48, was here for the inauguration. Hisataka, a ninth degree black belt which entitles him to the awesome red beltis head of the Shorinjiryu School in Japan, to which the Bangalore school is affiliated. Eager to allay fears about the dangers of "hard" Karate, he explains that Koshki is actually'' controlled contact'' Karate.
The blows only carry about 40 per cent of the potential power. To protect against the damage - possibly fatal - of even this much power, Hisataka designed special protective gear when he initiated the style a decade ago. Drawing inspiration from the armour of the Samurai warrior, he created a helmet made of light bullet-proof glass and a chest guard.
The set, priced at about Rs 4, will now be available in India. On the other hand, he adds, "you get a sense of reality". Tae Kwon Do style Also, it now becomes easier to judge each technique. A major problem for Karate so far has been the diversity of its styles - Goju, Wadoi, Chito, Shotokan, Shorin, and a host of others - none of which accepts the norms of another.
While Tae Kwon Do does not suffer from a variety of conflicting styles like Karate does, it has its divisions too. On the international level, there are two federations - one each based in North and South Korea. In India, both have adherents. To complicate things further, two Indian federations owing allegiance to the South Korean World Federation were formed - one each by Jagtiani and Andrew Gurung, another pioneer.
Now, Jagtiani's federation claims legitimacy through affiliation with the Indian Olympic Association. Its membership is concentrated in Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and other northern states. Gurung himself is now in Nepal to teach the art. The sniping between the two federations is intense.
Indeed, the competition between exponents of various martial arts in the country is bitter. Ask them to show their certificates from abroad," says T. He adds that lack of purity has become the bane of martial arts. Teachers are available a dime a dozen and given the variety of styles and even federations, there are few checks. People get black belts in India without really deserving them and set up schools, he asserts.
If you have the money in your pocket, you'll get your belt," says Grover. Techniques differ from one state to another but all make extensive use of circular movements, often circling the weapon around the user's head. The flexible nature and light weight of Indian swords allows for speed but provides little defensive ability, so that the swordsman must instead rely on body maneuvers to dodge attacks.
Entire systems exist focusing on drawing the sword out of the opponent's body. Stances and forms traditionally made up the early training before students progress to free sparring with sticks to simulate swords in an exercise called gatkaalthough this term is more often used in English when referring to the Panjabi-Sikh fighting style.
A common way to practice precision-cutting is to slice cloves or lemonseventually doing so while blindfolded. Pairing two swords of equal length, though considered impractical in some parts of the world, is common and was considered highly advantageous in the Indian subcontinent. The stick lathi in Prakrit is typically made of bamboo with steel caps at the ends to prevent it from splintering[ citation needed ].
Wooden sticks made from Indian ebony may also be used[ citation needed ]. It ranges from the length of a cudgel to a staff equal to the wielders height[ citation needed ]. The stick used during matches is covered in leather to cushion the impact[ citation needed ]. Points are awarded based on which part of the body is hit. Techniques differ from system to system, but northern styles tend to primarily use only one end of the staff for attacking while the other end is held with both hands[ citation needed ].
Gatka is associated with the Sikhs history and an integral part of an array of Sikh Shastar Vidiya developed during 15th century for self-defense. Southern styles like also make use of this technique but will more often use both ends of the staff to strike. The latter is the more common method of attacking in the eastern states and Bangladeshcombined with squatting and frequent changes in height.
Also according to Indian Hindu myths, Kartikeyathe son of Lord Shivais said to be skilled in spear-fighting, by holding his divine spear called Vel. The Indian spear is typically made of bamboo with a steel blade. It can be used in hand-to-hand combat or thrown when the fighters are farther apart. Despite primarily being a thrusting weapon, the wide spearhead also allows for many slashing techniques. By the 17th century, Rajput mercenaries in the Mughal army were using a type of spear which integrated a pointed spear butt and a club near the head, making it similar to a mace.
On the other hand, the longer cavalry spear was made of wood, with red cloth attached near the blade to prevent the opponent's blood from dripping to the shaft.
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Bothati fighting is practiced with a ball-tipped lance, the end of which is covered in dye so that hits may easily be confirmed. In solo training, the spear is aimed at a pile of stones. From this was eventually developed the uniquely Indian vita which has a 5 feet 1.
Using this cord the spear can be pulled back after it has been thrown.
Siddharta Gautama was a champion with the bow, while RamaArjunaKarnaBhishmaDrona and Ekalavya of the epics were all said to be peerless archers. Traditional archery is today practiced mainly in the far northern states of Ladakh and Arunachal. One sport which has persisted into the present day is thoda from Himachal Pradeshin which a team of archers attempt to shoot blunt arrows at the legs of the opposing team.
Lord Vishnu also carries a gada named Kaumodaki in one of his four hands. In the Mahabharata epic, the fighters BhimaDuryodhanaJarasandha and Balarama were said to be masters of the gada.
In the mace combat, Bhima wins the final battle against Duryodhana by hitting his inner thigh. Such an attack below the waist was said to be against the etiquette of mace duels, implying a degree of commonality to this type of fighting. It was and still is used as training equipment by wrestlers.
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The traditional gada mace was essentially a wooden or steel sphere mounted on a handle and with a single spike at the top. An alternative mace-head was the lotus-shaped padam. According to the Agni Puranathe gada can be handled in twenty different ways. Due to its weight, the gada is said to be best suited to fighters with a large build or great strength. The Mughal club or mace, known as a gurj or gargaj, had a head consisting of petal-shaped blades.
Fitted with basket-hilt, a spherical pommel, and a spiked top, this type of club was designed for beating down armour-clad opponents. Alternatively, some gurj had a spiked top and a hand-guard. Pehlwani and Malla-yuddha Grappling arts malla-vidyapracticed either as sport or fighting style, are found throughout the entirety of the Indian subcontinent. True combat-wrestling is called malla-yuddhawhile the term malakhra refers to wrestling for sport.
Karate and Tae Kwon Do vie for supremacy
Malla-yuddha was codified into four forms which progressed from purely sportive contests of strength to actual full-contact fights known as yuddha. The second form, wherein the wrestlers attempt to lift each other off the ground for three seconds, persists in Karnataka. Traditional malla-yuddha is virtually extinct in the north where it has been supplanted by kusti, but another form called malakhra still exists in parts of India and SindhPakistan[ citation needed ].
Vajra-musti was another old grappling art in which the competitors wrestled while wearing a horned knuckleduster. In a later style called naki ka kusti claw wrestlingthe duellists fought with bagh nakha. Boxing Mushtiyuddha [ edit ] Boxing musti-yuddha is traditionally considered the roughest form of Indian unarmed combat.Pakistan: Women take up martial arts in Karachi following spate of knife attacks
In ancient times it was popular throughout northern Indian subcontinent, but is rarely practiced today. Boxers harden their fists by striking stone and other hard objects. Matches may be either one-on-one or group fights. All kinds of strikes and grabs are allowed, and any part of the body may be targeted except the groin. In this variation, boxers fought while wielding a kara or steel bracelet like a knuckleduster[ citation needed ].
Grabs, kicks, biting and attacks to the groin were all legal, the only prohibition being spitting on the opponent which was considered crude and dishonourable[ citation needed ]. The kara used for regular matches was unadorned[ citation needed ], but the form employed during war had one or more spikes around its edge[ citation needed ]. The kara may be paired with one on each hand[ citation needed ], but it was generally only worn on one hand so the other hand could be left free[ citation needed ].
In some cases the free hand could be paired with another weapon, most commonly the bagh nakha [ citation needed ].
Kicking[ edit ] Kick-fighting aki kiti is the preserve of tribes from Nagaland. While the entire Naga population of northeast India and northwest Myanmar was traditionally known for their skill with broadswords dao and other weapons, disputes among tribesmen and between tribes were settled with a solely kick-based form of unarmed fighting.
The goal is to either drive the opponent to their knees or outside of the ring. Only the feet are used to strike, and even blocking must be done with the legs. In modern times when the carrying of weapons is no longer legal, teachers of the martial arts often emphasise the unarmed techniques as these are seen to be more practical for self-defense purposes.
A warrior who fights unarmed is referred to as a bhajanh, literally meaning someone who fights with their arms. The bare-handed components of Indian fighting arts are typically based on the movements of animals or Hindu deities.
Binot, a Central Indian art which focuses on defending against both armed and unarmed opponents, may be the earliest system of its kind.