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Why do we train the ways of the ancient warriors?

Kali, Arnis, Escrima/Eskrima and Kuntao, our Filipino martial art program found on www.PSDTC.com

Why is it that we train in so hard in martial arts, whether it be sport or ancient warrior systems? Why do we take the time in our day to push ourselves in something many of us may not ever have to use in real everyday life? Depending on how hard you practice, we break our bones, pull ligaments, tear tendons, pull muscles, put up with neck pains, and just mention a few things that happen after a hard day of training…that is for those of us who take it to the extreme of course. Like people that do any type of physical activity, we as martial artists are always in pain when we wake up from a good training session. Though to me, it’s what I call a good/bad feeling. Yet, we never stop, even when injured. Over the years I have personally lost a few teeth training, as well as other parts in various areas of my body. Even in a civilized world we do this to maintain youth and health. If injuries occur, it’s just recognized as part of the lifestyle we chose.

So, what is it that attracts us to put in all this effort into developing these “super powers” martial art gives us? Ever notice we look up to the person who can perform a martial style with the coolest looking moves that look like they can kill or maim a person? Those moves that look like the “secrets of the ancients” are very fascinating. Especially since our ancestors fought pretty much 100% of the time with weapons of some sort…especially bladed weapons

Here’s another example of the lust for the fighting arts; you bring in a real nice knife somewhere, everyone who sees it has to hold it, admire it, slash and thrust in the air with it. You know their imagination is running rampant while playing with that gorgeous looking tool of death. As a fan of a nice looking weapons myself, I do find that particular admiration to be quite amazing when I see how captivated people are in those circumstances. That admiration, or even the fear some people have when there is a knife around. Either emotion is now part of our natural instinct due to a bladed weapons being such a part of human nature in one way or another. I would think the reason we all have this admiration for the bladed weapons and feel attracted to them is because our ancestors have such a long history of utilizing the blade since the beginning of man-kind. Every culture adapted to the blade for survival in many different ways. Self defense, shelter building, cutting wood for a fire, skinning and cutting up meat after hunting with a knife or whatever sharp implement we have available.

The only logical answer that fits the majority of true full-time martial artists is, the interest in practicing the fighting methods of ancient warriors is in your bloodline. It’s a good possibility you exist today because your ancestors won some sort of past battle in more than one era in your family history. And more than likely with a weapon such as a knife or a sword. I always say to exist today, your ancestors either fought and survived or your ancestors were royalty and there had to be someone defending them.

When you see the people that join a good martial art school and they do not stay that long.  Maybe they decided it is not a priority in their life. That is due to today’s social up-brining in this so called civilized world. It can also be that more than likely, those people are not of a warrior bloodline. A person fully committed, making their style(s) a personal lifestyle means you have inherited their ancestor’s genetics. It is in your genetics to be what you are as an individual so I am sure it has to do with a lust for martial art learning/teaching/training. Obviously all I am saying here is pure theory but what else could it be? As a full time martial artist, you are not out there committed to something like playing tennis or planting flowers or anything else, at least not to the extent of what you do in your martial art school anyway. If you really think hard about it, can you imagine yourself as a true warrior? Can you visualize yourself as a warrior ready to take on a battle willing to do any extreme necessary to survive? You will never know until you are faced with the reality of a very dangerous situation to get out of. How you respond will determine what your bloodline truly is not to mention how well you are trained. I should mention also, how well your martial art works in self defense situations.

I will finish with a quote written by my teacher, Tuhon Guro Dan Inosanto:
“We are all climbing different paths through the mountain of life,
and we have all experienced much hardship and strife.
There are many paths through the mountain of life, and some climbs
can be felt like the point of a knife. Some paths are short and
others are long, who can say which path is right or wrong? The beauty
of truth is that each path has its own song, and if you listen
closely you will find where you belong. So climb your own path true
and strong, but respect all other truths for your way for them could
be wrong.”

Ron Kosakowski
Practical Self Defense Training Center
847 Hamilton Ave (Rt 69).
Waterbury, CT 06706