Martial Arts Philosophy : What are the Martial Arts Styles?

Hi everybody I’m John Graden, Executive Director
of the Martial Arts Teacher’s Association and an eighth degree black belt. I’m excited
to be here today with you. Let’s talk a little bit about the origins of the martial arts.
Today the rage of course is mixed martial arts and that is going to be the future but
in order to have mixed martial arts you have to have separate martial arts. And we have
a variety of styles and part of the martial arts tradition is to look forward but honor
our past so let’s do that right now. There are two primary categories of martial arts,
striking martial arts. One is a soft style and the other is the hard style. The soft
style probably is where the origins of the martial arts began and that would be the Kung
Fu or Gung Fu systems. The difference is that hard styles are very straight and linear and
soft styles tend to work more in circles in a softer fashion. So the Kung Fu system is
also typically more internally based than some of the other systems so the soft style
of Kung Fu is a circular system. On the straight hard line styles our origins are in Okinawan
karate which is a very traditional strong system that emphasizes blocking and then countering.
They like to let you make the first move, capitalize on your mistake and make you pay
for it. Out of Okinawan karate came Japanese karate, shotakon, pioneered by the great Gichin
Funakoshi in the early 1920’s. That’s a very straight linear driving forward kind of style,
just like the Japanese, very simple, very powerful and right to the point. The fourth
major system is one of the later ones and this was developed in the 1950’s and this
is Tai Kwan Do or the various Korean systems of martial arts and they emphasize kicking.
The beauty of kicking is that your leg is a lot stronger than your arm. It is a lot
longer than your arm so it is a very effective weapon if you can keep your opponent at bay.
In the 70’s we started to merge these together, actually the origins of mixed martial arts
into a system that is called kickboxing. Kickboxing at the time took all the best of all the various
styles and applied them in a kickboxing ring with gloves, with rules, and started to develop
the sport that I think today has led to the mixed martial arts that we all enjoy on television
and of course on the internet. So there is an overview of the various systems of martial
arts all four of those, or five of those have deep subsystems and family trees and it is
quite, it is like roots going everywhere. So it is exciting, it is interesting, but
again we want to look with the future of mixed martial arts but always honor our past. I’m
John Graden and we’ll see you again at Thank you.

20 Replies to “Martial Arts Philosophy : What are the Martial Arts Styles?

  1. I also agree with "Livelife417" Gung Fu is not just soft, it can also be hard. Gung Fu is soft and hard to be clear. Every other styles thats ur talking about, comes from Gung Fu, such as taekwondo, karate and ect. Karate ppl just focuses on the "hard" style of Gung Fu, they exclude the soft, therefore there punches and kicks are too stiff and straight forward. MMA style to me is just, "boxing" "jiujitsu" and karate kicks..nothing more.

  2. he forgot to talk about grappling styles
    it doesnt seem right to classify all kung fu styles as soft or circular as many styles such as wing chun are extremely linear, basic and defensive

  3. He has the right idea. Facts are mostly wrong. Just a few styles I'll list to get your mind thinking. Aikido, Judo, Jiujitsu, Tai Chi, Xing Yi Quan, Baqua, Wing Chun. He forgot to mention the origins of kickboxing in 1950 Japan and Bruce Lee's aggressive merging of "hard," "soft" and grappling martial arts in 1970

  4. 8th degree in bullshit-do god this guy doesnt know what he's talking about "mma is the future"
    traditonal martial arts have been around for thousands of years do you really think they are all gona get bastardised? i can trace my karate roots to my sensai and his sensai all the way back to okinawa

  5. Except I think that Bruce Lee was truly the first mixed martial artist. Period. Kickboxing is basically what???? Taekwondo, thank you very much. Not really a mix of anything. A karate guy can go in there and do just as well, as a taekwondo guy or a kick boxer, cause it's the same shit.

  6. Martial Arts had always been on developing, and still are. However, the bases of martial arts shouldn't be distorted. That's why you can't forget the past, because if you do you will lose everything from technique to mentality and discipline.
    This will of mixing the martial arts has always been the enemy of perfection.
    That's what you see on a mcdojo…

  7. How can you talk about Mixed Martial Arts and not mention 'Muay Thai,Jiu-Jitsu, Wrestling and Boxing?' I know they are not strictly 'martial arts' but they are essential in 'Mixed martial Arts'

  8. @thelolguy007 Dude, Martial arts are everything that serves you in combat, including (but not limited to) boxing, fencing, archering, gun firing and wrestling.

  9. @TheRedGuitar00 It's not exactly fake. Many martial artists, when discussing the history of their or others' arts, don't exactly know what they're talking about. They repeat what they hear from their fellows and their instructors, and think teleologically.

    There is no research here–he aint a historian. There are no sources, only the repetition of commonly held beliefs regarding the "history" of the martial arts. I'm sure he captures some essence of truth, though.

  10. Hmm…. not too sure about the details. The host seems to oversimplify the info to the point of inaccuracy. just saying what i think.

  11. technically all combat sports are martial arts. They're an art form and they're martial which means they're based in fighting and combat.

  12. he completely forgot to generalize the grappling arts too. people who have little to no knowledge of martial arts while watching this vid will now think that martial arts are just punching and kicking…whether they're internal or external.

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