Kendo/other sword based training helpful in unarmed martial arts?

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I'm gonna have to be contrary here and say that it's at best a "maybe." If you want to excel in a facet of martial arts, train in THAT facet. The modern world is hung up on cross-training and maximizing potential, among other buzz words. But the sad fact is that spending a couple of hours a week on general martial arts skills gets you very little besides baby steps. If you want to punch well, you practice punching. Adding a bunch of kicking does not improve your punching. Learning throws and joint locks will not improve striking skills. These are all things that should be learned though a martial arts curriculum, but the skills come together differently depending on the person, the character of the art, and the amount of time invested in mastering those skills.

Weapon training is a perk of the martial arts, something fun that keeps up interest. But a lot of the weapons training can conflict with other skills--spacing and timing for instance. If the consequence for not maintaining the right distance is a sharp blade through the body or the loss of a limb, it pays to be very attentive. The single, devastating hit can happen in unarmed fighting, but it's less common and weathering a few hits is a very viable strategy. Given the limited time, money, and energy most of us have to engage in martial arts pursuits, we can't train it all. Pick something you want to get good at, and work it. Then pick some other skills that might be useful, like sticks, staves, or knives. Or go full in on learning sword, but with the knowledge that it won't necessarily lift the rest of your skills. There really is no wrong path to pick, except the path of doing nothing.
 
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The Fhilippino stuff is integrated so their weapons stuff is also kind of their hand to hand stuff.

Otherwise there is grappling in hema.
 
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I'm gonna have to be contrary here and say that it's at best a "maybe." If you want to excel in a facet of martial arts, train in THAT facet. The modern world is hung up on cross-training and maximizing potential, among other buzz words. But the sad fact is that spending a couple of hours a week on general martial arts skills gets you very little besides baby steps. If you want to punch well, you practice punching. Adding a bunch of kicking does not improve your punching. Learning throws and joint locks will not improve striking skills. These are all things that should be learned though a martial arts curriculum, but the skills come together differently depending on the person, the character of the art, and the amount of time invested in mastering those skills.

Weapon training is a perk of the martial arts, something fun that keeps up interest. But a lot of the weapons training can conflict with other skills--spacing and timing for instance. If the consequence for not maintaining the right distance is a sharp blade through the body or the loss of a limb, it pays to be very attentive. The single, devastating hit can happen in unarmed fighting, but it's less common and weathering a few hits is a very viable strategy. Given the limited time, money, and energy most of us have to engage in martial arts pursuits, we can't train it all. Pick something you want to get good at, and work it. Then pick some other skills that might be useful, like sticks, staves, or knives. Or go full in on learning sword, but with the knowledge that it won't necessarily lift the rest of your skills. There really is no wrong path to pick, except the path of doing nothing.
I agree if your main intent is to excel as a sport competitor within a specific style or school .

But NOT if you are trying to actually learn to fight , as in self-defense , warfare , security work etc .

In sporting matches there are normally rules and limitations that are nothing like a serious "no rules and no ref " fight in the real world .
 
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I agree if your main intent is to excel as a sport competitor within a specific style or school .

But NOT if you are trying to actually learn to fight , as in self-defense , warfare , security work etc .

In sporting matches there are normally rules and limitations that are nothing like a serious "no rules and no ref " fight in the real world .

A lot of serious competitors cross train though.
 
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There is this mis conception that if you only have a limited time to train then you can somehow rearrange reality to suit your social calender.

But your level of competence doesn't care about your busy life or your bad day. If you don't put the work in you won't gain the skills needed.

This is different to getting as much bang for buck out of your training time.

There are systems that will try to confuse these two ideas with the intention of peddling what is probably garbage. And it is good to be aware of that.

We get this focus thing a bit at our gym. Say boxers don't want to do the jits class because they don't want to muddy the waters or something.

But they are not spending that jits class time doing more boxing drills. They are going home and sitting on the couch.

In which case regardless of how unrelated the other style is. It is going to be more beneficial than doing nothing.

So if you are doing two day a week martial arts doing a third day sword would be beneficial.

And this is consistent with sport and self defense.
 
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Weapon training is a perk of the martial arts, something fun that keeps up interest. But a lot of the weapons training can conflict with other skills--spacing and timing for instance. If the consequence for not maintaining the right distance is a sharp blade through the body or the loss of a limb, it pays to be very attentive. The single, devastating hit can happen in unarmed fighting, but it's less common and weathering a few hits is a very viable strategy.

This is less distinct in self defense as you really want to treat the opponent's strikes as being quite dangerous.

The reason is if you become incapacitated by a stray punch you might have a very bad day.

And the way that is generally dealt with is keeping more distance and engaging over less time. Which is similar to weapon fighting.

You see it a bit more with bare knuckle.

For kind of the same reasons. Punches are more likely to get through and more likely to hurt you when they do.
 
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I agree if your main intent is to excel as a sport competitor within a specific style or school .

But NOT if you are trying to actually learn to fight , as in self-defense , warfare , security work etc .

In sporting matches there are normally rules and limitations that are nothing like a serious "no rules and no ref " fight in the real world .
That's the exact opposite of the point. The people who lived and died by their skills didn't pick up a telephone directory of skills, they concentrated their time, resources, and energy on the handful of ones that they were going to use. In the Katori Shinto Ryu school of kenjutsu, the practitioners have to get a serious ways into the swordwork before they learn how to throw shuriken. How much time do soldiers spend on unarmed or knife drills versus firearms training? One set of skills is likely to get used, the other is a question mark. In martial arts history, I continually found examples of practitioners who were renowned for a specific weapon or fighting style. One of the best spear fighters was a man whose name translates to "Magic Spear." He was famed for one specific thrust that he practiced incessantly, any time he passed through his front door he would pick up a spear he kept there and do that thrust 10 times. In a time when challenges often ended in maiming and death, he was undefeated. He died that way, because someone poisoned him. One technique that you are 100% solid in is superior to a bunch of techniques that one trains in less intensively.

This is less distinct in self defense as you really want to treat the opponent's strikes as being quite dangerous.

The reason is if you become incapacitated by a stray punch you might have a very bad day.

And the way that is generally dealt with is keeping more distance and engaging over less time. Which is similar to weapon fighting.

You see it a bit more with bare knuckle.
I said that the single devastating hit is uncommon, and I am standing by that. The human body does not have an On/Off switch that you see in video games and movies. KOs happen, and are more likely to happen with heavier hitters, greatly mismatched opponents, or sucker punches. I used to fight in bareknuckle competitions, and I would give the other guy controlled openings to hit me in the body so he would get his hands off guard. It is a lot harder to incapacitate a person with punches than it is to incapacitate with a broken arm or structural damage. Weapons change that equation instantly. A 3 inch blade can kill, an Arnis stick can move faster than the eye can track and absolutely shatter a forearm used defensively.
 

XJ-linux

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Anything where you get use to getting hit repeatedly, but not freaking or passing out, gets you ahead of at least half the population, right off the bat. Learning how to time and react to hit a moving opponent, and hit well, get you further. Anything that gets you thinking and reacting to block and move and evade is great too.

Don’t let martial purists dissuade your interest in fighting arts you find attractive.
 
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That's the exact opposite of the point. The people who lived and died by their skills didn't pick up a telephone directory of skills, they concentrated their time, resources, and energy on the handful of ones that they were going to use. In the Katori Shinto Ryu school of kenjutsu, the practitioners have to get a serious ways into the swordwork before they learn how to throw shuriken. How much time do soldiers spend on unarmed or knife drills versus firearms training? One set of skills is likely to get used, the other is a question mark. In martial arts history, I continually found examples of practitioners who were renowned for a specific weapon or fighting style. One of the best spear fighters was a man whose name translates to "Magic Spear." He was famed for one specific thrust that he practiced incessantly, any time he passed through his front door he would pick up a spear he kept there and do that thrust 10 times. In a time when challenges often ended in maiming and death, he was undefeated. He died that way, because someone poisoned him. One technique that you are 100% solid in is superior to a bunch of techniques that one trains in less intensively.


I said that the single devastating hit is uncommon, and I am standing by that. The human body does not have an On/Off switch that you see in video games and movies. KOs happen, and are more likely to happen with heavier hitters, greatly mismatched opponents, or sucker punches. I used to fight in bareknuckle competitions, and I would give the other guy controlled openings to hit me in the body so he would get his hands off guard. It is a lot harder to incapacitate a person with punches than it is to incapacitate with a broken arm or structural damage. Weapons change that equation instantly. A 3 inch blade can kill, an Arnis stick can move faster than the eye can track and absolutely shatter a forearm used defensively.

Yeah. There is this idea that we can engage in meat grinder style street fights because of our level of toughy toughness and because all the cool kids do it.

And you see those krav style drills where you just tee off on a guy without repercussions.

But it is a silly high risk way to defend yourself that relies a lot on physical ability. Rather than just being smart and playing the percentages.

Ko,s are also likely to happen if someone is over reaching to make range. And this is less reliant on heavy hitting and more reliant on the fact that if you want your fist to go forwards fast and hard you generally also have to make your head go forward fast and hard.

And if that person does have a weapon you potentially didn't see. Then you haven't eaten a bunch of shots before you find out.

All of this is about the very much overlooked concept of saftey distances in self defense. They really are further back than a lot of people think.
 
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That's the exact opposite of the point. The people who lived and died by their skills didn't pick up a telephone directory of skills, they concentrated their time, resources, and energy on the handful of ones that they were going to use. In the Katori Shinto Ryu school of kenjutsu, the practitioners have to get a serious ways into the swordwork before they learn how to throw shuriken. How much time do soldiers spend on unarmed or knife drills versus firearms training? One set of skills is likely to get used, the other is a question mark. In martial arts history, I continually found examples of practitioners who were renowned for a specific weapon or fighting style. One of the best spear fighters was a man whose name translates to "Magic Spear." He was famed for one specific thrust that he practiced incessantly, any time he passed through his front door he would pick up a spear he kept there and do that thrust 10 times. In a time when challenges often ended in maiming and death, he was undefeated. He died that way, because someone poisoned him. One technique that you are 100% solid in is superior to a bunch of techniques that one trains in less intensively.


I said that the single devastating hit is uncommon, and I am standing by that. The human body does not have an On/Off switch that you see in video games and movies. KOs happen, and are more likely to happen with heavier hitters, greatly mismatched opponents, or sucker punches. I used to fight in bareknuckle competitions, and I would give the other guy controlled openings to hit me in the body so he would get his hands off guard. It is a lot harder to incapacitate a person with punches than it is to incapacitate with a broken arm or structural damage. Weapons change that equation instantly. A 3 inch blade can kill, an Arnis stick can move faster than the eye can track and absolutely shatter a forearm used defensively.
In the olden days , martial arts schools jealously guarded their special techniques and sometimes even tried to gain a psychological advantage by claiming supernatural powers . That's not entirely gone , but far less than used to be , even when I was young .

Information is power and can grant decisive advantage in a fight .

If your knowledge and skills are too narrow in focus , you may achieve mastery of a limited sort within a specialized school / style , but be relatively unprepared against the unknown opponent from outside your style .

Of course , unless you can concentrate enough time and energy in one area at a time , you won't make any meaningful progress at all .

Some kind of balanced approach , IMO, is most beneficial .
 

XJ-linux

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Had a guy tell me to watch out for practitioners of “My-do”. Took me a while to figure that out. LOL
 
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