|Traditional martial arts provide a path for its students. But which path the|
student takes, is ultimately up to them.
It is competition that mainly sets traditional martial arts apart from sport arts, but as with anything that is similar, there are no definite boundaries to easily define "traditional" vs. "sport" martial arts anymore. A gradation began to blur the difference in about 1964, when most judo became an olympic sport. Today, one can differentiate the extreme end-point martial arts from one another, but there is now everything in between - much like in politics.
|The 1984 Karate Kid|
|Our daughters and sons should have an ability|
to defend themselves if necessary. There are too
many trials in life to leave them unprotected.
In parts of the Middle East, Christian, Jewish and Muslim influence can be seen in some martial arts groups - but I suspect those who train in martial arts can more easily resolve differences in their religion by having common ground of the traditional martial arts bond, except for extremists, whose minds are closed to everything. In India, the original source of martial art, there is influence of religion on martial arts. But this may be because many of the goals in traditional martial arts match many goals in non-violent religions. But no matter what we think, there is evil everywhere in this world, just as there is good. So, it is the individual who brings good or bad to religion, or to martial arts. In the end, we are all judged by what we have done or accomplished.There are aspects of traditional martial arts that one can continue to learn their entire life.
There is no end to learning in the martial arts. Thus, the more one trains in martial art, the more one begins to see various applications of kata and technique. Karate employs forms know as kata. The more a person trains in kata, the more they begin to understand the hidden techniques that were unknown to them during their previous year of training. Kata also teaches proper breathing, movement, balance and with the assistance of a qualified instructor, it will teach speed, power and focus. After the movements in a kata are mastered, each part can be broken down into bunkai (self-defense applications) and each part can have many different applications that include the obvious, the not so obvious, and then the hidden. It takes understanding and creativity to truly master bunkai, because one must learn to react without thinking, react with lightning fast speed, learn to react with maximum power, remain in balance, have proper distance, and understand the many different modifications.
|Training in kobudo is nothing more than an extension of karate. This art|
uses the same stances, same hand movements, and kicks as karate - but
teaches the student to use a weapon, whether it is a traditional martial
arts weapon, or a modern tool. For example, one can use bo (6-foot stick)
as shown here, or than can use a different modern tool - shovel, rake, hoe.
But, when it comes down to employing traditional karate in a self-defense situation - whether it is the defense of oneself, or of another, women can defend as effectively as any man - but they must train hard in a dojo. Traditional martial arts can lead one to peace of mind and even to a path of peace.