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#103812 - 12/12/03 06:56 PM Gymnastics in forms?
Kotetsu Offline
Member

Registered: 04/17/03
Posts: 314
Loc: Hollis, NH, USA
I went to a tournament awhile ago, and was very disappointed(very,very,very disappointed). Most of the 'freestyle' forms were simply gymnastics with the occasional block and strike thrown in, nothing traditional enough would be the best way i could put it. It seemed to be more of a dance/aerial gymnastics competition rather than a karate tournament. I know they're freestyle forms but they should be more karate and less gymnastics stuff.

Have anyone of you ever noticed this in tournaments these days? And what do you think of this, in my eyes, travesty of karate?

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#103813 - 02/17/04 05:23 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
sunspots Offline
oldtimer/newbie
Enthusiast

Registered: 05/02/03
Posts: 650
Loc: Southern Oregon, USA
(I know this is kind of an old topic, but I just stumbled onto it.)

I don't care for the gymnastics I see in competitions these days either. What purpose do they serve? They are all flash and no real substance, just a "showing off" of flexibility. Say for instance you are mugged in a small alley, are all those flying cartwheels, and backflips going to help you? I think not. You need good blocks, strikes, and maneuverability, not flash.

I was overjoyed to overhear the head judge at my last tournament instruct others to ignore gymnastics and concentrate on judging martial arts...

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#103814 - 02/19/04 01:28 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
Kotetsu Offline
Member

Registered: 04/17/03
Posts: 314
Loc: Hollis, NH, USA
Cool, I'm glad someone agrees with me, and i'm glad to hear about that judge. Thanks for the reply.

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#103815 - 04/23/04 03:10 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
WADO Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 04/23/04
Posts: 900
Loc: denver co usa
One of the cardinal rules of fighting is be extremely carefull if you have to lift both feet off the ground at the same time. 225 pound Steve Atwater knocked 260 lb Christian Okoye flat on his back because he had both feet off the ground at the same time. Remember again Kata is never an end unto itself just a means of training, so any technique that does not improve your fighting is silly. Doing a back flip or jumping twisty spinny triple flip flop kick would not have any practical benefit. Mabey serious Martial Artists should cut these people off or agree that while beautifull that type of Kata is not part of our art or sport.

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#103816 - 03/19/05 06:01 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
Anonymous
Unregistered


Freestyle forms are about showing off not beating people up. I think that its ok for them to do gumnastics as long as there is martal arts techinques in every move. advanced jump kicks should be ok but just fliping for no reason souldent increase someones score.
if you are looking for more street practical competition theres ufc.

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#103817 - 03/20/05 09:44 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
schanne Offline
breaks things

Registered: 02/18/04
Posts: 4370
Loc: Woodbury NJ
Tournament are fun but I wish they would keep them traditional and stop the gymnastics mixed in with the katas, they look flashy....but ridiculous. If they have to have it make a seperate catagory for gymnastic kata?

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#103818 - 03/29/05 09:59 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
Anonymous
Unregistered


I don't mind an open kata division that allows some of the people capable of doing the really complicated hollywood stunt type martial arts, but that should be it, a stunt, but one that reasonably looks like a martial art. The total gymnastics crap needs to be disallowed, or at least scored really low in any division to prevent it from becoming the norm in what is supposed to be a fighting art.

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#103819 - 04/06/05 02:48 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
Anonymous
Unregistered


sounds like cheerleading.

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#103820 - 04/28/05 10:39 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms?
Anonymous
Unregistered


yes, haha, i been seeing alot of these also in some of my last tourney's

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#103821 - 05/04/05 05:56 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: schanne]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
Let the mcdojos make up their "tournament katas" and lose to the rest of us when we face traditionalist judges who like technically correct and functional katas. I've seen people lose tournaments before because they try to add too much flash to their katas.

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#103822 - 05/04/05 04:44 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
sunspots Offline
oldtimer/newbie
Enthusiast

Registered: 05/02/03
Posts: 650
Loc: Southern Oregon, USA
I have been in tournaments which had separate divisions for "Traditional Forms," (the way they are usually taught in your school and performed for testing purposes,) and "Creative Forms," where pretty much anything goes.

Seems like a good way to divide the two areas....
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#103823 - 05/05/05 02:09 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: sunspots]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
Here's a link if you want more info on gymnastic MA:

http://www.powercheerleading.com/
_________________________
Boris the Irresistable Monstrosity.

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#103824 - 05/06/05 08:40 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Kintama]
Ominae Offline
Newbie

Registered: 05/06/05
Posts: 10
Loc: USA - Massachusetts
Heres another linky: http://www.bilang.com/system.php

I wish they'd stop calling this crap martial arts. If the only requirement for something to be a martial art is that you kick/punch then technically my entire formative years as a toddler could be considered martial arts. Don't get me wrong, these folks look like they are in great shape and there is definite value in being that flexible and having those "fast-twitch" muscles. But seriously, why flip-kick when a well placed punch will do so much better.

A little Wikipedia definition: "Martial arts, also known as fighting systems, are bodies of codified practices or traditions of training for unarmed and armed combat."

*Edt: Anyone ever seen the movie "Gymkata"? Oh man, talk about one cheesy ass movie. There is a scene in the movie where the star uses a well that is conveniently shaped like a pommel horse to kick all his attackers as they circle in on him. I can't do this movies cheese factor justice, google it to find some good pics.


Edited by Ominae (05/06/05 08:43 PM)

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#103825 - 05/09/05 04:19 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Ominae]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
was that sight even about MA??? All it looked like to me was gymnasts doing floor excercises, and they just wore gi. You're not trying to tell me that people actually consider that MA are you. MCDOJO ALERT!!!

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#103826 - 05/09/05 05:43 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
There are Chinese arte where gymnastic ability is part of the fighting tradition. Those arts practice extremely complicated locks and throws and the gymnastic movements are ways of countering those techniques, to move out of those locks as they're being formed, and if you can't do the release, too bad.

Of course that's a far cry from using gymnastic movement to 'look good' to the judges.

V
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#103827 - 05/10/05 12:37 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Victor Smith]
WhiteRice Offline
Newbie

Registered: 04/12/05
Posts: 19
I train at a dojo for bujinkan budo taijutsu (ninjitsu), and there is a lot of rolling, cartwheels (no hands), and other acrobatic thigns. I think this all shows an important part in being aware of where you are. Agility is important in martial arts, and acrobatics shows that well.

On the other hand I don't think that this should be a large portion of what is judged.
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Persistence

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#103828 - 05/10/05 07:47 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Victor Smith]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
Quote:

There are Chinese arte where gymnastic ability is part of the fighting tradition. Those arts practice extremely complicated locks and throws and the gymnastic movements are ways of countering those techniques, to move out of those locks as they're being formed, and if you can't do the release, too bad.

Of course that's a far cry from using gymnastic movement to 'look good' to the judges.

V




I've actually seen a practitioner of such an art once at a tournament. His form was awesome. However, you could tell that it was MA in nature, because his moves always flowed together, and the hand motions made alot of sense in conjuction with his body. Ie, his hands always led and then followed his body, and the position of his arms looked like they were in a lock, sans opponent.

What peeves me is the guys who take a traditional form and change a part of it to look better, or add unnecessary and/or irrelevant flips to their forms.

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#103829 - 05/10/05 12:36 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
People have been including gymnastics in kata since forever. Hidy Ochiai used to do traditional style forms and incorporate back flips in them in the 70's.

Some people have very impressive gymnastics and martial technique interwoven.

If you want a way to judge whether their efforts are more than superior gymnastics (and nothing wrong with that if that's where your head is at.

If in the form if there is one movement where the punch is a push (to just extend the movement flor for the eyes of those watching) or one technique that is not martial in intent, then the entire form is not martial. [I'm assuming this is not a beginner, where mistakes may make incorrect technique.]

The flaw most modern forms have, is the high energy of the gymnastics is often followed with pretend techniques.

To consider a form martial each technique must be directed with correct energy/flow to martial contentl. The advanced Chinese forms (not modern WuShu) using gymnastics were all created with that in mind.

It still seems a reasonable way to look at it.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#103830 - 05/10/05 03:24 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Victor Smith]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
That is a reasonable way to look at it. Most people who've been training seriously for at least a few years can tell the difference between a real kata and a gymnastic routine. A sr ranking BB should most certainly be able to tell the difference. I've beaten guys in tournaments who changed their forms to include flying spinning kicks in places they didn't belong simply because I chose a traditional form and didn't change it. The one time I tried changing my form all I did was add something to the end, and I didn't do as well, even though the flow was there.

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#103831 - 05/10/05 09:28 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
Bushi,

I've been at this over 30 years.
When the first gymnastic forms came about they were rather tradition, like Hidy Ochiai doing a perfect back flip in the middle of a form. Or Jhoon Rhee's classical music TKD forms.
Then Gary Michak created 'Superman' to the superman theme song (from the movie). His was a prefectly, incredibly complex form.

When gymnastics crept in (such as instructors havingi their young students begin training in gymnastics too, and the custom building forms, I don't think we knew how to judge them.

They didn't look like karate, but the skills to do what they were doing were extreme, so a great gymnastic routine, versus a great Chinto became hard to judge, and many (myself included) likely gave extra credit to the gym form.

But in those days nobody was spending much time on the application potential of karate. As I greadually became enraptured by the 'force' (star wars plug, good timing of course) I eventually left tournaments behind.

Then I came to realize martial intent and other things. And when I saw how the early gymnastic MA forms became modern Juke and Jive forms, with kicks and strikes for looks, not focus how to judge them came to me.

Today I only would judge any black belts forms of any sort by one standard. If the entire martial intent is perfect 100% if thee's one mistake 0. And from what I've seen todays Juke and Jive are almost a certain 0.

But then judging myself I'm a 0 too. But those I would give 100% too, those are the ones to watch out for.

Heck If I could do Superman I'd love to do it, martial or not, it was neat!
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#103832 - 06/27/05 01:53 PM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
muaythaiguy Offline
Member

Registered: 06/26/05
Posts: 108
Loc: Michigan, USA
I myself am a gymnast, and when I first became interested in the martial arts, I immediately gravitated toward a more solid, grounded art. I love doing gymnastics, don't get me wrong, but simply because both gymnastics and MA require great physical conditioning, doesn't mean that the two are easily intertwined. I think some martial artists could benefit from some basic gymnastics training, such as with back handsprings, which cover a great deal of distance with minimal effort, and still leaves your opponent in your view, but flash kicks and roundoff double backs should be scored from 1-10, and shouldn't find their way into a MA tournament. and powercheerleading is nowhere near gymnastics, please don't insult my fav. sport.

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#103833 - 07/16/05 12:11 AM Re: Gymnastics in forms? [Re: muaythaiguy]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
Gymnastics and MA can most certainly complement each other, but you're right, they don't automatically intertwine. The balance and coordination you gain from gymnastics does translate over very well though.

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