Sep 142011

Here is an old martial art from India. You might have heard Kung fu fighters saying the Shaolin Temple is the source of all martial arts, well this martial art claims to be the parent of Shaolin kung fu.

 The style is called Kalarippayattu. That is 14 letters! Off the top of my head, Kalarippayattu wins the award for longest name in martial arts, easily edging  out Tae Kwon Do (9), Jiu Jitsu (8), Hapkido (7),  Karate (6),  Kendo (5), Judo (4), and Te (2).

Anyway the art comes from South India some time around the 11th century. Its training includes strikes, joint locks, throws, and extensive weapon usage. The style was even outlawed during the British occupation of India. This caused it to drop out of the public eye. I’ll let them and the Kung fu crowd fight over who parented who, but its kind of cool to see a martial art developed without interference of Japanese influence.

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