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#361954 - 09/20/07 10:56 PM Effective Martial Art for Small Guy?
draiko Offline
Newbie

Registered: 09/20/07
Posts: 10
Hey, this is my first time here, and would appreciate it if someone could answer some of my questions.

I'm considering picking up a form of martial art as a sort of hobby I guess, but with the added bonus of being able to hold my own in a fight if I'm ever in that situation.

I'm not a big guy (5'7" 110lbs.) so I need a style that works well for smaller folk, as I'll likely be fighting someone bigger and stronger than myself. I'd also need a style that's better for a bar/street fight rather than sparring or sport type fighting. I'd prefer a style that will end a fight quickly, with strikes if possible as hurting someone in a grapple, to me, seems like a good way to have em come at you again once you release (probably wrong, but would still prefer striking if it's available).

So what are some styles you guys would prefer based on what I have listed? I looked around a bit, and as far as I know, Kempo and Muay Thai are some of the better styles. I doubt I'll find a place that teaches Muay Thai where I live though.

Using elbos seems like a good way to end a fight fast though, if you can connect with it; which might be hard in a real street fight.

So anyways... opinions?

Thanks.

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#361955 - 09/20/07 11:04 PM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: draiko]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Do some research in your area. Look around and even sit in on some classes. Make sure you tell them why you are interested in taking lessons.

As for your size, I wouldn't worry about that. You can adapt to the style you choose. Everyone is not the same size in different styles.

Do some reading and research,watch how people train, stay away from sport oriented mcdojo's and chi-ball throwing ninja types.

BTW, self defense is much more than just fighting.

_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#361956 - 09/21/07 06:42 AM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: BrianS]
Totality Offline
Member

Registered: 09/19/07
Posts: 26
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Hi Draiko,

Like yourself I am not a very big guy and I found that what worked best for me were things like Wing Chun, Jeet Kune Do & Krav Maga.

Though I have also trained in Karate and Boxing for many years I found the above arts gave me an edge because they promoted physics that worked for 'my' body type.

Brian also gives sound advice on checking things out.

Don't ever be intimidated when approaching a Martial Art/Self-Defence school and make sure the interview process is a two way street.

HINT:
No matter where you train make sure you do lots of running (Distance and sprints) because no matter what type of MA you may take, when a gun, knife or multiple opponents are involved once you clear the path the best self-defence will be how fast you can get the hell outta there!

IMHO
Thanks,
_________________________
"You will fight the way you train"!

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#361957 - 09/21/07 06:59 AM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: Totality]
JKogas Offline
Prolific

Registered: 01/25/03
Posts: 10818
Loc: North Carolina
draiko -

I don't know what you have available in your locale. Best thing to do is spend some time at each place observing training and get a feel for which of those things resonates the most with you. Then go and train hard, particularly with regard to physical fitness (hopefully wherever you go, they train athletically and emphasize conditioning).

Over time, step outside of your art and experience other things. Experience boxing, wrestling, judo, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, muay Thai, savate, Karate, Krav Maga etc. You will become a better martial artist for it.


-John

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#361958 - 09/21/07 07:13 AM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: draiko]
Prizewriter Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 2577
What area(s) are you capable of travelling to?

You don't need to be too specific on a public forum, just general areas you could reach e.g. cities you could travel to or what state/province/county you can get to etc... We have been able to find good places for people on here before.

BTW don't get to hung up about size... Bruce Lee was also 5'7"...

Morihei Ueshiba, Founder of Aikido, Expert in Japanese Martial Arts and still capable of throwing men twice his size around a room even in his 60's, was 4'11"...

Masahiko Kimura, one of the greatest Judoka ever, a man who beat Helios Gracie (a formidable opponent himself and no giant at that!) and once overcame 4 drunken marines was 5'6"...

I could go on all day. It's what you do with what you have that counts. Improve the things you can, be happy with the things you can't.



Edited by Prizewriter (09/21/07 08:03 AM)
_________________________
"Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food" Hippocrates.

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#361959 - 09/21/07 12:35 PM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: Prizewriter]
JAMJTX Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/01/02
Posts: 585
Loc: Fort Wayne, IN
Yoshinkan Aikido and Wing Chun come to mind.
Jujutsu styles like Danzan Ryu, Small Circle may alos be good for you.

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#361960 - 09/22/07 10:16 AM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: draiko]
draiko Offline
Newbie

Registered: 09/20/07
Posts: 10
Thank you all for your replies. I'm not sure what's available myself at the moment. I was hoping to get a list of some martial arts that might fit my small/weak stature before beginning to look.

I live in Newfoundland, so my options are likely pretty small.

And of course I realize this is more for fitness and self-defense, which I welcome. I just want that added bonus of being able to hold my own a little better in a fight with some guy at a bar or whatever. Striking, to me, seems like a better route to go than grappling, and it interests me more, so that's what I am looking for right now.

Off the top of my head, Kempo, Karate, and Tae Kwon Do are all available, not sure what else is right now, but once I get a list of some decent martial arts that fit what I'm looking for I'll start asking around.

Again, thanks for the tips so far guys.

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#361961 - 09/22/07 12:12 PM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: draiko]
Prizewriter Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 2577
Well you have a Judo club:

http://www.judonl.ca/

An Aikido Class:

http://aikidonl.com/intro.html

And two TKD classes as you said:

http://nltkdacademy.ca/index.html (WTF TKD)

http://home.thezone.net/~sdowney/ (ITF TKD)

A couple of Karate classes:

http://www.avalonkarate.ca/ (Chito-Ryu)

http://www.mun.ca/master.html#s (Shotokan. It is listed as a club at the university under MUN Shotokan, but there is not link.)

http://www.nsjka.ca/clubindex.html (Another Shotokan club)

And some Kenpo classes too:

http://www.kenpo-nfld.com/HTML/frame_page.html

http://www.foleys-atla.ca/locations.php

And a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu class:

http://www.republicbjj.com/


That's all I could find in my initial search. Please God I hope you meant Newfoundland in Canada!!!

First thing I would suggest is to check out as many schools as you can. Try a class or two, see how you like it and what the teacher is like.

Something else which just occurred to me that I haven't suggested before... if you know someone, be it a relative or family member or school/work mate who has tried martial arts before, get them to go with you. They may know what to look for in terms of a good school.

All things being equal, and if you heart is set on striking martial arts, then you could go with Karate, TKD or the Kenpo.

The WTF TKD place looks like it is geared towards kids... this is a bad sign.

The ITF place seems ok, but again, check everything out.

Regarding the Kenpo, both classes seem like American Kenpo. I don't know much about this to be honest. MattJ and the others may be able to help you out if you ask them nicely.

Regarding the Karate, you have two Shotokan clubs and a Chito club. Shotokan is a Japanese style of karate. Traditionally it is a very powerful style, working from low stances to help build up the legs and develop power.

Chito is an Okinawan/Japanese style. If I am not mistaken, it uses Bogu Kumite. Bogu involves the karateka wearing padded armour on the head and upper body. The Karateka is allowed to use full power strikes in Bogu Kumite i.e. it is full contact.

Chito also contains weapon work (Traditional Okinawan/Japanese weaponry). Shotokan does not usually contain this.

All things being equal (e.g. quality of teaching, expense, distance etc...) I would go with the Chito Ryu. This is my own preference, my reasoning is thus:

i) Full contact training can be very useful resistance training.

ii) It was designed by a medical doctor, Dr. Chitose Tsuyoshi. He used his medical knowledge to make Chito more beneficial for a practioners health amongst other things. May not seem like much to you now, but having good health is the most important thing for an individual. Or it should be at least.

iii) Canada has had a long association with Chito. See this Wikipedia article:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chit%C5%8D-ry%C5%AB

It is likely Canada has some of the best Chito teachers in the world due to its long association with Chito HQ.


One final note: Don't disregard the Judo, BJJ and Aikido altogether. As John said, learning about different arts can usually only help you. If you did study a striking art e.g. Chito-Ryu, and if you had the means, you could maybe consider doing a BJJ/Judo/Aikido class once a week or every other week as a "minor".

Hope this helps. Sorry its such a long post!
_________________________
"Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food" Hippocrates.

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#361962 - 09/23/07 09:43 AM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: Prizewriter]
draiko Offline
Newbie

Registered: 09/20/07
Posts: 10
Quote:

Well you have a Judo club:

http://www.judonl.ca/

An Aikido Class:

http://aikidonl.com/intro.html

And two TKD classes as you said:

http://nltkdacademy.ca/index.html (WTF TKD)

http://home.thezone.net/~sdowney/ (ITF TKD)

A couple of Karate classes:

http://www.avalonkarate.ca/ (Chito-Ryu)

http://www.mun.ca/master.html#s (Shotokan. It is listed as a club at the university under MUN Shotokan, but there is not link.)

http://www.nsjka.ca/clubindex.html (Another Shotokan club)

And some Kenpo classes too:

http://www.kenpo-nfld.com/HTML/frame_page.html

http://www.foleys-atla.ca/locations.php

And a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu class:

http://www.republicbjj.com/


That's all I could find in my initial search. Please God I hope you meant Newfoundland in Canada!!!

First thing I would suggest is to check out as many schools as you can. Try a class or two, see how you like it and what the teacher is like.

Something else which just occurred to me that I haven't suggested before... if you know someone, be it a relative or family member or school/work mate who has tried martial arts before, get them to go with you. They may know what to look for in terms of a good school.

All things being equal, and if you heart is set on striking martial arts, then you could go with Karate, TKD or the Kenpo.

The WTF TKD place looks like it is geared towards kids... this is a bad sign.

The ITF place seems ok, but again, check everything out.

Regarding the Kenpo, both classes seem like American Kenpo. I don't know much about this to be honest. MattJ and the others may be able to help you out if you ask them nicely.

Regarding the Karate, you have two Shotokan clubs and a Chito club. Shotokan is a Japanese style of karate. Traditionally it is a very powerful style, working from low stances to help build up the legs and develop power.

Chito is an Okinawan/Japanese style. If I am not mistaken, it uses Bogu Kumite. Bogu involves the karateka wearing padded armour on the head and upper body. The Karateka is allowed to use full power strikes in Bogu Kumite i.e. it is full contact.

Chito also contains weapon work (Traditional Okinawan/Japanese weaponry). Shotokan does not usually contain this.

All things being equal (e.g. quality of teaching, expense, distance etc...) I would go with the Chito Ryu. This is my own preference, my reasoning is thus:

i) Full contact training can be very useful resistance training.

ii) It was designed by a medical doctor, Dr. Chitose Tsuyoshi. He used his medical knowledge to make Chito more beneficial for a practioners health amongst other things. May not seem like much to you now, but having good health is the most important thing for an individual. Or it should be at least.

iii) Canada has had a long association with Chito. See this Wikipedia article:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chit%C5%8D-ry%C5%AB

It is likely Canada has some of the best Chito teachers in the world due to its long association with Chito HQ.


One final note: Don't disregard the Judo, BJJ and Aikido altogether. As John said, learning about different arts can usually only help you. If you did study a striking art e.g. Chito-Ryu, and if you had the means, you could maybe consider doing a BJJ/Judo/Aikido class once a week or every other week as a "minor".

Hope this helps. Sorry its such a long post!




Wow thank you so much. Not only did you give me some recommendations with reasoning, but you did most of the work for me with regards to locating a school as well.

Much appreciated.

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#361963 - 09/23/07 11:05 AM Re: Effective Martial Art for Small Guy? [Re: draiko]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Truly above and beyond, PW! However -

Quote:

And some Kenpo classes too:

http://www.kenpo-nfld.com/HTML/frame_page.html

http://www.foleys-atla.ca/locations.php




These do not appear to be American Kenpo schools, but rather Okinawan Kenpo, FWIW.
_________________________
"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin

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