May 112012

I want to be a responsible for coming up with concepts for extreme sports. I think all you need to invent the next big thing (and by big thing, I mean one or two viral videos on youtube) is to have $30, a few crazy friends, and the reasoning skills of an eleven year old. Then you plug random words into the following sentence.

Wouldn’t it be cool if we took (insert sport) and added (insert cool noun)!

Some ideas I’ve come up with using this process are

Wouldn’t it be cool if we took sking and added Rocket Launchers!

Wouldn’t it be cool if we took baseball and added motorcycles!

Wouldn’t it be cool if we took hunting and added the Statue of Liberty!

As you can see, it works. Well it seems I’m not the only one who thinks so, apparently even back in 1949 they were doing this, and without the aid of the Internet…and that’s just silly. I give you blind folded boxing.

Now the girl who walks around and smacks you if you aren’t being aggressive enough is awesome.

Don’t forget to share this with your friends

Oct 142011

Yet another great white ninja

The post on Ashida Kim reminded me of some other…Ninja Masters. Today I would like to poke fun at Frank Dux. Grand Master Frank Dux is the subject of the movie Blood Sport, and claims to be trained in Koga Ryu Ninjitsu which he has updated into the modern Dux Ryu Ninjitsu using the experience he had being the world heavy weight champion of the secret international (often to the death) fighting championship “The Kumite” (which was formerly called “The Parade of Death”). Continue reading »

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.

Sep 062011

In light of my last post, I figured I’d bring up a really old martial arts tradition, that of Dojo Yaburi, or as we know it, challenging a dojo.

I am sure that you are like me, being raised on a strict diet of martial arts programing that showed martial artists blocking swords, throwing fireballs, flying, punching through brick walls, and challenging other martial arts and taking their signs with them as trophies. I can’t speak to the first bit, but as for the second bit, challenging a dojo, that was a very real and traditional part of martial arts in the past. It sounds like something the ‘roided’ up guys from the local MMA gym, or at the very least a few ’80’s Cobra kai karate dudes would do, but it was a part of traditional martial arts.

Doesn’t sound like your average traditional karate school action does it? Well the practice goes loosely like this. Challenger enters dojo and asks for a match with the sensei or master. Normally at this point, the dojo will be cleared to make room for the match, and some sort of agreement will be signed. At this point the challenger will be paired against a senior student. This is supposed to make sure that the challenger is qualified to fight the instructor, so the instructor does not waste his time, but I’ve always felt it was so the instructor would get a chance to see how the challenger fought. If the challenger won his match with the senior student, the instructor would fight him. Now in movies, the challenger would take the dojo’s sign with him, and that did happen, but it wasn’t a rule. Normally the purse for winning was simply the loss of face for the dojo, but many schools offered a cash prize if anyone managed to win, for example Helio Gracie and his Gracie challenge.

Now, to all you young martial artists out there, please don’t get up from your computer and go down to your local tae kwon do school and challenge their instructor during their kid’s class. There is another side to this. First, the school had to accept your challenge, and that doesn’t mean that they would accept your challenge right then. I don’t care if your instructor is here or not! I demand to fight him! Any reasonable excuse could postpone the match for a short term. Many schools would charge a fee for accepting your challenge. We’d love to fight you, please sign here and here and we will need $500 cash, thanks. After all, if you beat them, the school loses face, and maybe students, if they win, what do they get? Oh, and that fee was non refundable even if you won. Lastly they ask you about your credentials. It says here that you have a black belt in guitar hero. Umm..Is that your mom waiting in the car?  A dojo is not obligated to fight any hobo who sneaks in the door.

Failure to meet any of these rather reasonable demands would result in the dojo not viewing your challenge as such and instead as a crime. This means that the dojo would feel totally justified to send everyone in the school after you at one time, or call the police and have your arrested for starting trouble in their place of business.

Its also good to remind everyone that although dojo yaburi is very rooted in tradition, it has never been considered polite or proper behavior. Do expect any accepting sensei to do his level best to make sure you leave in a horizontal position.

Sep 022011

I am sure at this point they get tired of being compared to the Gracies, kind of like being so-and-so’s little brother, so if you didn’t know the other notable family of Jiu Jitsu, they are the Machado’s.

In the Machado family there are five brothers, Carlos Machado, Roger Machado, Rigan Machado, Jean Jacques Machado, and  John Machado. They rank (BJJ black belt wise) 8th, 7th, 7th, 6th and 5th respectively. To put this in perspective, Royce Gracie is only 6th degree! This high powered BJJ family learned their skills from the founders themselves (Carlos and Helio) due to the fact that their mother’s sister (their aunt) married Carlos Gracie! Talk about a break. I’ve been trying to get someone in my family to marry into the Gracie family, but so far no takers.

Anyway the whole Machado fighting family moved up to the USA and kind of spread out. It is a natural law that awesomeness attracts, and in 1990, Carlos moved to LA and met Chuck Norris. After the city was rebuilt from the resulting shockwave of awesome, Norris invited Carlos to start teaching out the same building he was filming Walker Texas Ranger in Dallas Texas. Chuck Norris became a loud advocate of BJJ and the Machado family and started training with them. Eventually Carlos gave Chuck Norris the only thing he didn’t have, a BJJ Black bel, which disproved the long held scientific theory that once Chuck Norris achieved everything in life that the world would end.

Also notable among the Machado family students, they have also trained to a black belt level, defacto head of Jeet Kune do Dan Inosanto, and Tenth Planet Jiu Jitsu founder Eddie Bravo. My brother is the owner of one of their hats which he got for free at a grappling tournament in Georgia back in 1996! Which is about as close to training with them as we are likely to get.

So it is true, if you meet a guy who says he’s 3rd degree or higher BJJ black belt or higher, and he isn’t related to the Gracies, chances are, he’s lying.