Forbidden Kill Strikes

How to Teach Yourself Martial Arts

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Jump »chool at fort Campbell in-troduced Dan to Karate via Hank Slomunsky In I960. Slomansky uoa later to be killed on duty In Viet Nam.

Thlm Ittu t il Parker'n 1965 Kcnpu Kurule team after a tournament In Soft take City. Bob Coofc (left) wot the ('»ram! Champion. Steve Sunder» (right) u«i the uhlte belt champion. Steix u^ll luter gain International recognition a* one of the founder* nf the Muck Kutate Federal inn (BKF).

Jump »chool at fort Campbell in-troduced Dan to Karate via Hank Slomunsky In I960. Slomansky uoa later to be killed on duty In Viet Nam.

"We had many Instructors," says Danny, "and some were pretty good for that time Even Slomansky had a mixture of styles When we were on the mat. we did what he said to do but during free time, other Instructors had their say "

That kind of arrangement sometimes leads to problem*, but it worked out to Danny's advantage It gave him the opportunity to see different styles and judge for himself what suited him best.

"At that time," he remembers, "there was a guy from Hawaii. He was only a brown belt and he was knocking the hell out of second and third-degree black belts While he was sparring with all the different black belts, somebody said that it was Kenpo. I liked the way he moved around and I %aid. 'Gee. that's something Yd like because I'm small; that's the thing for me.'"

Kenpo When Danny was discharged and moved to Los Angeles in 1961. his interest in Kcnpo led him to Ed Parker, a man who would change his life considerably and send him on the path he walks today

Parker has become known as the "Father of American Karate" for his efforts to put the martial arts before the public. Through his International Karate Championships, the oldest major com petition on the American tournament scene, he has worked with men like Matsuoka. Chow. Ohshima. Wong. Uyeshiba. Oyama. Vamaguchi. Choy and Tohei Danny came to Parker as a kicking specialist .ind by the time he earned a black belt under the Kenpo founder. Parker had infused his own brand of deceptive hand work to Danny's movements to round him out One day he touched a special cord in Danny with )ust a few words.

"Have you ever seen the art of Escrima?"

"Stickflghtlng." Danny replied.

And that's where Danny's enlightenment began He went to his father In Stockton. California, where Escrima was practiced only among Filipinos. Sebastian Inosanto was the first Filipino farm lal>or contractor in California and knew most of .the Escrirnadors by name The first three he introduced Danny to were Max Sarmiento. Angel Cabales and Johnny Lacoste While vtill training with Ed Parker. Danny gained a reputation.among the Filipino community as a man who. besides having ability, was willing to listen and learn In time, doors began to open all around him.

In 1964 Ed Parker made arrangements for Bruce Lee to make his first major public appearance at the International Karate Championships Danny, an elimination chairman at the time, was asked to escort Bruce around town. The meeting began a second major change In Danny's martial arts career.

"When I first met Bruce Lee. I couldn't sleep that night." soys Danny "I was really bothered because it was something that I'd never seen It was like having learned an occupation for five years, and then having someone say. 'We no longer have any use for your occupation ' But in this case. I'd studied all these different arts I won't say that they were worthless-- but what he did was counter everything without really trying It was very frustrating."

In the next nine years of training with Bruce Lee. Danny learned the reasons for his frustrations and began to see the relationships of what he had previously learned to Bruce's philosophy of combative efficiency. Mists cleared and curtains lifted as he began to apply the principles of what would become known as Jeet Kune Do to the Judo. Karate and Escrima that were a part of him already. While he was studying with Bruce, he continued to work with other instructors. Ark Wong among them He could study different arts at the same time because, as Bruce taught him. the basis of his own personal "style" came from within. With the background he had in the martial arts and with Bruce Lee as a sounding board, he was able to "take that which Is useful and discard the rest."

With perhaps the exception of modified versions of Western boxing and Chinese Wing Chun. Kali was the art he adhered to most Perhaps he favored Kali because the principles involved were so closely aligned or easily adaptable to the principles in Jeet Kunr Do.

When Bruce Lee died in 1973, Danny was still working with a small group of martial artists that Bruce was teaching before he went to Hong Kong in 1970 Men from the group Daniel Lee. Richard Bustillo and Jerry Poteet among them, gave Danny the opportunity to continue his Escrima. Kali. Amis and JKD training and develop a personal "style" of movement found nowhere else in the world. Since one teaches from what one knows. Danny's JKD students today study Kali as part of their regular training, but the principles they are taught don't confine them to any martial art or style Any one of them may choose another way and Danny will smile in the middle of a conversation and say, "If it works, use it; whatever you want "


The history of any fighting art Is a reflection of the society and culture from which it was formed. The Filipino arts arc no different. Consequently, In order to develop a fuller understanding of this unique martial art. it is a good kJea to take a brief look at the history of the Filipino people

Despite decades of research and study, historians ' rd anthropologists have failed to solve the migratory mystery of the multi-racial society that has developed over the last several thousand years; One theory postulates that the ancient Filipinos came from India and Persia and worked their way down through the Indonesian islands into the Philippines

Another theory claims that the earliest Inhabitants migrated from ancient Egypt in reed, boats.

One of the most interesting theories, however, contends that the beautiful and sprawling island chain was once a part of the Asian mainland The Anthropologists from this school of thought claim an early pygmy tribe called Negritos journeyed west in search of food and game and eventually settled In the Philippines before the Pacific Ocean swallowed up the earthen umbilical cord that tied the Islands to the mainland.

The next group of people who found a home in the lush mountain slopes were called the Proto Malay. Their origins are still unclear but their features were said to have tied them to the Mongol race Their preference for mountain living would seem to add credence to that belief

The tall, burly and sea-loving Indonesians were said to be the next group of people to settle and they are believed to be the first to arrive by boat The forerunners of the various Polynesian tribes (people of many islands), the Indonesians, were fearless sailors who took wives and interbred with the cultures already established

The next Immigrants were also Indonesians but they were shorter and darker skinned than the Indo Aryan group that preceeded them. They too. interbred with the established cultures and relied on [arming and fishing for their existence.

Around the fifth century, one of the earliest of the great Asian empires began to form. A group :al!ed the Brahlns came from India to Sumatra and created the famous I iindu-Malayan empire of Sri Vishaya They conquered and colonized many lands and their fame and influence were felt all over ftsia. and the Pacific

After ColonWnq Bo?neo, the Sri Vishaya Invaded the Philippines Superior weaponry and organization enabled them to conquer the early Filipinos and many of them fled to more distant Islands. Others moved deeper Into the mountains and forests to escape the invaders. Yet many stayed, made friends with their new rulers and eventually the two cultures merged

The Sri Vishaya had a great Impact on the development of the Filipino culture. Aside from be ing skilled warriors, farmers and seamen, they brought a more advanced civilization to the islands by introducing new laws, the calendar, a written alphabet, a new religion and the use of weights and measures. The people from Sri Vishaya became the Vmayan people of the central Philippines.

Still another great empire formed In Java around the 12th century and it was called the Mad)apahit empire. Influenced by Arab missionaries who were spreading the Moslem faith and who conquered them In the latter part of the fifteenth century, the Mad)apahlt empire took over the Srl Vishayan empire and spread the Moslem religion Into the Philip pines They settled most heavily in the Southern part of the islands and became known as the Moro (Muslim) Filipinos. Fiercely independent and proud, they still exist as a distinct culture.

The Chinese also had a tremendous influence on the development of the Filipino culture Thousands immigrated to the Philippines as peaceful traders and merchants following the Manchurlan invasion in the 12th century In their homeland The Chinese had been involved In trading with the Filipino people for over 400 years by this time and they were easily assimilated Into the culture.

In the early part of the 16th century, the Spanish conqulstadores invaded the Philippines The fir*t famous foreigner to encounter Filipino sticks was Magellan According to Filipino history. Magellan was a pirate He burned their homes and tried to enslave their people as part of the great Spanish conquest It was on the small island of Mactan in what is now the province of Cebu. several hundred miles south of Manila, where he was finally stopped by Ihe fiery chieftain Lapu l.apu and his men

Lapu Lapu and his men stopped the first Spanish Invasion with rattan and hardw<K>d sticks an the Island of Marian. Magellan paid with hi» life.

Villagers in cotton clo<h fought the armoured Spaniards to the beach They battled Spain's finest •.•eel with pieces of rattan, homemade lances and fire hardened sticks with points. Magellan died there and a statue of l~apu L&pu on Mftctan credits the chief tan for hit death

The old R&plnos who made stick fighting an aft preferred to hit the bone and preferred a stick to a blade Instead of a clean cut. the stick left shattered bone The business **nd of a stick can travel many timci the speed of the empty hand And .! feel* nothing, whether it hits hard bone or soit flesh.

Little wonder the vicious, swift, elusive ;r«cks of the Filipinos were feared. Their elliptical motions, reversals. fluctuating angles and constant motX>n made the Filipinos very tough to deal with. I? was the savage art of a savag»- land, cultured over a thousand years of bloodshed that continues even today.

The encounter was only the beginning of a 400-year r.truggie Magellan'-« men sailed home without him. but the spanlsh would return. The Filipinos were impressed wrth the Spanish sword and danger lyirrm of fighting. Imitated it arvd -.oon found the weaknesses of the Spanish style Ihelr new method that employed a long and short stick eventually assumed the Spanish name of "espada y dago," meaning sword and dagger

The hi ipinos were a clever people As more invaders came, their fighting styles were studied by the islanders who developed new styles arvd methods to combat them Some of the methods took names that described their tactics such as' "repcticfon" (repeating attacks) or "r.terada retreating style) or ' largo mono" llong hand) or "abanlco." which means fan Others took the names of their .nventors such as "Toledo" or "Bergonia ' Some were named after locations where they were developed. Bohol" and "Pangasinan" were two And some, such as "Etaliano." were named after the enemy There are probably over 100 styles In the Filipino martial arts but they can be divided into three main groups: the Northern styles, the Southern styles and ihe Central style of the Philippines A common mis conception Is that the Filipino martial arts are only a sword, stick or dagger art Rather it is a complete self-defense system of ^-mplv hand*. using swords, various types of sticks, clubs, staffs, lances, knives and projectile weapons It includes the cane art, newspaper art. shoe art. chair, fan arts and various other hand weapons

There ore an uncountable number of styles in lh< Flfeplno arts, but they all have one commor denominator that gives them an odaptabiliiv fa surpassing most martial arts today. Their principal of combat are based on a pattern of angSes that a' attacks must fall Into, regardless of the style regardless of the weapon. With the angles of artacV understood, all fighting styles are fam !inr and ail }ustments need only be mode for peculiarities c/ footwork or striking characteristics. A light weapon, for Instance, may changc angles several times Ir the midst of a single strike, yet It takes very little u deflect It. A heavier we«5>on must complete ts motion on a single angle before returning, so it needs only a single defensive motion, but that motion must generally include getting out of the way

Al" of this from a primitive but sophisticated ancient art. With thic kind of understanding, the RUplnoi possessed .in inbred knowledge of the Spanish fenc ng that they had never seen before Little wonder they gave the Spanvsrds so much trouble

When live Spaniards returned, they come with reinforcements aivd firearms. Though the Filipinos understood combat with empty hands and with the stfck and bladed weapons, they had little chance against the Spanish, guns and their practiced tactics of conquest.

The islanders themselves seldom crossed the boundaries of their own regions and often fought civil battles with neighboring regions The large Spanish forces found this weakness and conquered each small area as individual nations With such tactics they used the people of one region to que:! uprisings In another, pitting the fighting skills of the Filipinos against each other The Filipino people eventually conquered themselves and elements of the Sponiih language, arts and religion crept Into their culture.

Once Spanish rule was secured, the Filipino martial arts were outlawed Skirmish, a translation of the Latin word escrima. was not something the Spanish wanted their conquered people practicing

Escrima became a clandestine art. hidden from Spanish eyes. Meanwhile, the lace and steel cl«:i Spanish nobles developed o new interest -n some of the quaint island dances In one particular dance, the performers isoee dccocated wristlet* made of leather to accentuate their hands This became a favorite of the Spaniards who commissioned the dancer« to perform at speoaJ function*

and even lo entertain in Spain They were amused by the ViSagers. danong m island costumes, ro&ng their outstretched hand« lo the beat ol ra&vt drums The I tlipcncn must hew been amused as well. The native dances employed many combative Kail moves This was the way limy practiced and preserved the outlawed martial arts r>|ht under the noses of the Spanish The decorative ornamen tal designs on their person also preserved the alphabet after the Spantsh burned all the» books

Spanish rule was followed by American domination m the early 1900s After more civil stnfe. the Ftbpcno people subsided into a reluctant accept ance of foreign rule. They had fought foe hundreds of year* against foreigners from many lands and found that every form oi resistance only left another opening Most oi the Filipinos laid down their arms and en>oyed a short period oi complacency AM except the Moros*

h should be remembered that the Spanish conquest was also a religious one, bent on imposing the rule of the Roman Catholic Chun h. Apart form the main of Filipino people who accepted the Catholic rebgfion. the Moros of I he South main tained their sovereignty and preserved their culture and retgfon to the end oi the Spanish regime They were MusLms and they opposed the Roman Catholic form of Chmoantty with hot. flowing bloodshed. The raiding Muslims were pure hate, cloaked and mounted on horseback. brandishing death dealing blades Their hoofbtats and their fasl ships terrorized Spaniards and Fdiplnos alike

With the encroachment of American rule, the Moros continued to oppose foreigners on thetr native soli Under fire from United Scales «• maments. they became fanatic warriors "Juramentado'* was a new cry that meant the Woodthlrsty Muslims were running amuck'

V a single Muilm furamentado caused terror, a handful sent into a military encampment brought utter chaos But It wasn't just their religious fervor that made them so effective The art behind their Waded weapons was "Kali." (siLal) the oldest form of weaponry on th%* islands and mother to Escrlma Older than Escrlma ' Ka& comes form I he word kalis. which impHes a Made, and it dates back to a time before Chinese from the King Oynasfy Infiltrated the islands Kali, also a stick, empty hand or multi-weaponcd art, defended the islanders fOf centuries before the Spanish Invasions

Whether live Muslim were ever beaten \ a matter of debate. In wars culminating with General John J Pershing, many thousands ol Musfcm men. women and children vkrre slaughtered by American guns and mortars Except foe occasional incidents. Muslim raids ceased but today the peo pie still retain both their religion and their fierce independence

For a time after American rule, the Philippines became a commonwealth. Then. World War U broke out. Suddenly, the Filipino people were fighting with mcks and blades and guns against the

Japanese American Intervention was welcomed this time and Flhptnos eagerly enlisted into the American services

Hundred* of o<court f of Moras continuing to fight after being riddled ivtth bullet* forced the U.S. Army to l»*u+ the .43.

In religious fervent a single Musfem would stride trancefck* down the mamstreet ol a town, blade in hand, lolling everything In his path Any Christians he killed supposedly assured him a place in heaven. Often, he wore a red headband shaved head, that meant lie would not stop killing until he too was killed not an easy task One hltforlcal source describes an American captain who stood before a Muslim juramentado and empeed the slugs Ol a 38 cakbre p«»<ol «mo Nm The Musfcm decapitated the Christian before he died According to the accounl. that incident prompled the American servicemen to request a weapon wwh more stopping power, resulting in the den-pi of the 4S calfcre

Hundred* of o<court f of Moras continuing to fight after being riddled ivtth bullet* forced the U.S. Army to l»*u+ the .43.

Tlx? young Filipino enlistees wre soon dtsen chanted In the inimitable way oí military service*, they were required to conform to the armed forcen* methods of close quarter combat When they were ftnoBy given the char.ce to dcmon^i.Vc thor native arts the order was remanded. Their demonstration» included bettering the seJi-defense bayonet Instructors with long leafed shaped boSo knives and sticks Thereafter, all platoons of Filipinos were Knucd boto knives and they practiced their own arts In basic training.

Filipinos were frequently used for guerilla war fare on the .-.Unds On patrol, they maneuvered through the brush in a triangle formation with their best man walking point the point man encountered the enemy first, disabled him <or them) and kep: walking, leaving the man in the rear to ftntsh the Job

After and during the war. «he rnor«* adventurous I scr,madors and men left their Homes and Immigrated to Hawaii and California. Alone In a strange land, they tended to group together and soon became a m«S>or source of farm laborers In Hawa i they wielded machetes to cut lugar cane and In California they handled long shanked tools with square Wade» on the ends to cut asparaguv l>>ggir>g potatoes. hoeing fields, the warriors of the Philippines resigned themselves to domestic labor

Even their children knew little of thr r fathers' arts The clack, clack of slicks or ring of steel near sunrise ar»d late at night invited curious youngsters' but they were always sent away live new generations had to live peacefuÄy Yet. the elders couldn't fotget the arts that had helped them sur vlve

Finally • happened: %ome of the children found out Young, strong youths bred of hot Malayan blood were captured by the excitement oi flashing weapons. In ways only the* fathers couki understand, they demanded what was nghtfully theirs. And the an began to flourish again

Now EscrSnu^dors say the majority of Filipinos have at least a rudimentary knowledge of Kali or bscrlma The older "masters" who have proven themselves In combat are revered and treated w«lh the utmost respect. Etcrlma In the Philippines ts dead, they say The proven f»ghters. the adventurous ones, hove a3 left. If what they say »s true, then America Is the new home of the h sen ma dor -or Kal. of the ancient savage and sophisticated arts of the Filipino people

The knowledge we possess in the Filipino arts, we owe to these elderly EscrimadofS and Kali men who were willing to pass their arts on to us the younger generation.

77l< J »I Filipino Infantry'* favorite u>eapon - the boto.

"Atway* J\nt.~ uws ehe saying on the regiment's coot •>/ arm«. Ihr c/iw^ Krt% and lyorot uor shield represented the two dominant war-Hke pagan trib+.% and the J stor3 ttymbolize the 3 principal Islands - Luzon. VUo>«i and Mindanao.

77l< J »I Filipino Infantry'* favorite u>eapon - the boto.

"Atway* J\nt.~ uws ehe saying on the regiment's coot •>/ arm«. Ihr c/iw^ Krt% and lyorot uor shield represented the two dominant war-Hke pagan trib+.% and the J stor3 ttymbolize the 3 principal Islands - Luzon. VUo>«i and Mindanao.

Asparagus Ann»* Urft) uere used by the f'/JIplnos to practice their art tn teeret uhtte toorktnjt tn the fields cuffing asparagus. A typical bato (right} that u*x% used In WW II. Us blade um»» about 24* tony.


There are many styles in Escrima, Arnls and Kail and they can all be divided Into northern, central and southern styles of the Philippines But It's Interesting to note that two students coming from, say. the To/«?do sfy/e. descending from the same man named Santiago Toledo, can be completely different In their movement, approach and training methods.

Styles borrow from each other, expand and contract like the universe, but each student makes a style workable by individualizing It for himself.

Instructors remove and add their own elements to the style they teach and students, likewise, may add things to a style that were thrown out by their Instructors. So In my opinion, there are no styles I prefer to use the terms "methods" or •'system*" of training. Style is something Individualized

With that In mind, the following are just some of the facets found in the Filipino martial arts.

Methods (Styles/Systems of Training)

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Martial Arts An Introduction

Martial Arts An Introduction

Anytime an individual decides to learn how to protect themselves, learn self defense, or become a better person, one thing comes to mind - Martial Arts. Martial Arts are now being practiced all over the world.

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