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The risks of sports development of martial arts


Teddy Riner, Judo

A few weeks ago, on this blog, I asked you this question:
How do you perceive the competition in the martial arts?
and I invited you to answer a survey organized by Antoine Thibaut, the editor-in-chief of the Art of the Way, the free magazine on martial arts.

Many of you responded to this survey and I thank you for it. This helped Antoine a lot in this research and allowed him to finish his ebook:

"The risks of martial arts sport development"

Antoine Thibaut personally wanted to bring you this ebook directly on this blog and to offer it to you.

I leave the floor to Antoine:

Hi all,

Antoine ThibautFor those who do not know me my name is Antoine Thibaut, I practice martial arts for a little over 7 years (mainly jujutsu, taiji and recently Aikido) and I created there are now more of a year a free magazine on martial arts entitled " the art of the way ". The purpose of this magazine is to allow everyone to have basic but free information on the history and culture of martial arts.

One of the things that has always interested me is the study of martial arts theory, but it was first necessary to define what the martial arts were. This difficulty did not seem to come so much from making sense of what is a martial art, but rather to distinguish the martial art from what it is not, the sport of combat. Another problem that has arisen and which is also at the origin of this study, is that the martial arts, as they are practiced today, are for many of them practiced, not as fighting art, but as a sport, contrary to the will of their founder.

A few months ago Bruno had offered to answer a questionnaire, which I posted online, on the martial arts and more specifically on the sports aspect that they have developed. It is time for me to deliver the fruit of this study begun several months ago. Your participation allowed me to write an article of 45 pages demonstrating the risks of the martial arts sport development and the ways in which this risk could be remedied. I wrote this article in the form of an ebook for download that I called:

"The risks of martial arts sport development"

This ebook is divided into two parts, preceded by an introduction of ten pages. The purpose of this introduction is to help define and distinguish martial arts from combat sports. This attempt at definition makes it possible to understand the antagonism that exists between the two practices. Results Survey on the Risuqes of Martial Arts Sport DevelopmentIt is also in the introduction that you will find part of the survey result that shows some confusion of these two notions (martial arts and combat sports) in the minds of many practitioners. However this confusion is rarely their fault but often results from misinformation or a very broad interpretation of the martial art.

But the real purpose of the introduction is to ask us what is the consequence of the shift from martial arts to combat sports or in other words what are the risks of the development of martial arts sports. Which will take us directly to the first part of the article.

1 - The Effects of Martial Arts Sports Development:

This section deals only with existing risks and is in no way to denigrate the effectiveness of combat sports, or practices such as MMA (which is subject to one of the sections).

The purpose of this study is to demonstrate that a sporting development goes against the spirit of the martial arts and can lead to technical, philosophical and cultural losses within its last.

My research will be based on, among other things, extracts from competition regulations and extracts from interviews, articles etc ...

This study could have ended there, but I preferred to do a second part in order to propose solutions to mitigate the development of its risks, each having its advantages and its weaknesses.

2 - Solutions for the Future of Martial Arts:

Three solutions will be developed:

The first solution would be the establishment of a clear separation between what is martial art and combat sport. Of course such a separation would be difficult because of the nebula called the "modern martial arts", that is to say, martial practices that are very close on the merits of the martial arts, but which incorporate in their practice of the competition.

The second solution which is not exclusive of the first but which would be a way of putting it in place would be the setting up of archive. The goal is thanks to a set of videos, texts, images, freeze the martial arts as they are today with their technical, educational, theoretical, philosophical and historical set to allow not only to avoid the dangers arising from the sports development of martial arts, but also to preserve the culture of martial arts.

The third solution finally, the one we could call "the Korean example". This solution is that of a practice in two stages which would finally go a little against the sports drift of the martial arts. This solution advocates, instead of opposing the introduction of sport in the martial art, to make sport the basis of the martial art. We would thus obtain a practice in two stages. At first the practitioner would be confronted only with the sporting aspect of art and once a certain age or a certain grade reached he could then study the martial art itself. This last solution, although rather easy to put in place, is also from a certain point of view the most risky for the preservation of the martial arts.

Download the ebook: " The risks of sports development of martial arts "

I thank you once again for your participation, which will have allowed me to obtain a certain number of essential data for this study and which opened me to new thinking.

Ebook the Risks of the Martial Arts Sports DevelopmentI wanted to personally offer you this article, or rather this ebook of 45 pages, but I wish to clarify that this book is not an absolute truth and is only a point of view, in order to make things happen. , and deserve some deepening.

You can right now download the ebook on my blog by clicking on the image opposite.

Enjoy, this ebook is free. You find the link directly on my blog " the art of the way«

(Click on the photo of the book opposite to access Antoine's blog and access your gift for free)

I look forward to your reactions by thanking you again for your participation,




Here, I hope that this gift that came to us Antoine on ™ will please you.

While waiting for your reactions, I would like to thank Antoine for his remarkable work and generosity to come and offer it to us. Thank you Antoine!

And now, as Antoine says, leave your comment below and give us your opinion!

see you soon,

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  1. In my opinion, karate shotokan is already a sporty drift of young academics and the son of Mr. Funakoshi. I practiced a year UechiRyu and there are techniques open hands like spades to the eyes, strikes with the index folded, kicks down the tip of the foot (in town shoe is very feasible) , hardships and it's really a special atmosphere that is not at all "sport". Sport has a little overwhelmed the former karate, sometimes hyper and with a priori that karate contact, for example, to questioned. In my opinion, the return to true "karate" would be to revisit sources Okinawa that does not The shortcomings of modern karate for older people are lacking. What is lacking is makiwara, bodybuilding, etc., that in aging one loses muscle mass ... Developing the techniques of hands knowing that in aging we are less mobile ..
    If we listen to old feelings we feel that they are in another world, ignored ...

    • A former Shotokan practitioner in my youth, I chanced to go back to a Shorin Ryu dojo. The 1er month I thought I was going to stop because despite my 5 years of practice I was a little lost. For me who had never practiced the old weapons, or the melee, the fight on the ground ... it was really the hell, the feeling of not assimilating. I want for more than 15 years!
      Now, I can say that the lack of competition with its flagship technical 5 I do not miss. I feel that the sporty side prevented me from evolving in my art and trying to understand its meaning. Sweating is no longer a guarantee of good study and the story of a kata teaches you more about how to approach it than 100 rehearsals.
      In my humble opinion, if you want to practice at advanced ages like some old Okinawa Master, first you have to go to them, then not to set goals but not to stop learning, and only one life will not be enough! unfortunately or fortunately!

  2. What intrigues me about the martial arts in competition is that it's very different from the dojo.
    When I look at the kumite, the karateka jump and do not take the positions taught at the dojo. Their shots rarely leave the hara. The guards are not used, the only "defense" is to jump back.

    What to think?

  3. My name is Nicolas and I am a Romanian karate trainer. My club has two courses with 90 students (sportsmen and practitioners) where the majority are children and schoolchildren. With a continuous activity more than 27 years, in every day, I think the first time the students will want the glacier sportivf and then aprofounde the karate that produces a new design. the martial arts are discovered at all after a few years of practice. The first time martial arts have been a guere art and the scopes are supervising in man temp.While mankind has evolved, martial arts have become a modality. »Education, autoeducations and evolution spiritual.

  4. This study has the merit of making think karateka.
    Disturbing for those who are looking for martial arts, we realize that many clubs are actually combat sports clubs, the subsidies are often proportional to the results obtained in competition, the club must often submit to this practice of the competition to obtain notoriety and subsidies ....

    In the past, I had found a club that was not competitive, oriented towards this traditional karate, the rates were quite high, the participants all adults. The club closed ..

    In a period when everything is subject to profitability, performance and notoriety, it does not surprise me that art loses its soul at the expense of sport.

    The sport is more accessible than the martial art, more spectacular and the return on investment (price of the courses paid compared to obtaining the guards) faster, in short in the sport of fight one wants to progress quickly,

    The 3 section of the study perfectly reflects my thinking ... the less than thirty years (roughly) are attracted to the sport of combat, the older ones would turn more towards the martial art ... (past a certain age one n has nothing to prove by aligning the cuts that only become a reflection of past splendor)
    At this moment the martial art makes progress and takes all its spiritual and tragic meaning (the Art of War, which is used only to lead to victory or irreparable defeat ... if I understood correctly ).
    From where the interest to choose a club which corresponds to its aspiration and which allows a long practice ....

    Congratulations for having put this link that allows to address this other side of Asian fighting practices, and resurfaces the roots ....

    In order to keep the practice of karate affordable by the greatest number,

  5. The development of martial arts does not present any risk for me, on the contrary the evolution of these arts gives a new breath to adepts and fans to ensure a certain continuity in the martial way that nurtured a continuous research based on science.

  6. Cyril Lhermusieau at

    Thank you Bruno and thank you Antoine!
    I was "friend" with you two on facebook (Mook-Jong) but for more freedom I preferred to break this artificial link which became more and more taking ... see counter-productive.
    I am therefore delighted to find your writing and experiences through this.
    For the record I am practicing wing-chun..and is part of the Samuel Kwok Chun Wing Martial Art Association..with open-mindedness about the other Arts of the way that characterizes it.
    Best regards.

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