You or any of your guys keen to check out Arakan? They seem to be down your way/area? And I think you'd be pretty qualified, with your experience, to say what's going on :icon_sant.
at this stage I can't really spare the time to go. If I have any time spare to attend a training session, I'd prefer to spend that time training at my club, and also being a (relatively) newlywed, it's a bit of a balancing act to ensure I get enough training time in as it is. I run a morning class 4 times a week, and train 3 nights (more if/when I can), so it's difficult, to say the least.
Earlier on in the thread I did post my experiences from having sparred with an Arakan practitioner though.
"Rune" is the perfect name for a rough Norwegian guy who rocks up to an MMA fight without much training and smashes his enemy in the first minute.
Arakan has no history outside of Gold Coast and brisbane. It has NOTHING to do with Burma or the province of Arakan, it was created by a Burmese guy in Brisbane or the Gold Coast named Rob I think. I was told he trained kung fu (either wing chun or tong long) and a bit of BJJ a few years ago. He just decided one day to make some money from the martial arts so created the bullshit story about an art called Arakan from ancient Burma (nice, seeing he is Burmese so no one would ask questions). They teach mostly in parks and charge a lot for you get especially considering the lack of facilities and inexperience of the sifus. As usual no one bothers to check these things like their history but it is a 100% total and utter fabrication about being from Burma, Arakan, the art of the king's bodyguards and all that crap. I will give 100 quid if I am proved wrong.
They are really arrogant about how Arakan has no rivals but like all these BS arts they never put it on the line against ANY other skilled martial arts in competition. The usual "We are made to kill" stuff. After talking to enough Arakan guys you just get really tired of the stupid attitude. On the other hand they do some nice stuff with kids, teaching them stranger danger sort of stuff. nothing is original but it is still okay. I just get worried that if the kids are also fed the bullshit line about the unbeatable art they will get hurt.
Because they are human and can train hard like anyone of course they can develop a level of skill which may work sometimes. The range of skills is very limited so they talk a lot about how they can do this or that or how it is better than anything else in the whole world blah blah blah. They use the Tong Long kind of pok-sau to the neck which is always good if you get it on the carotid sinus, claiming it is unbeatable, but it is very easy to deal with as most readers here will know. If it was that unbeatable, everyone would be using it. It always comes back to putting your money where your mouth is, so why is there no Arakan guy (or what the hell, half a dozen of them) in the UFC cage dishing out hell to Lesnar, Couture, Besping, Machida, GSP and others for as much as they get teaching girls in parks in a year. But they can't so their not, their still down the park at Broadbeach teaching girls how to hit pads for $60 an hour. Go figure.
I've just spent the past hour or so reading through this thread, and would love to see how it turns out.
Just checked out the Arakan website. Not too informative, gives you quite a few links on how to sign up for your first free lesson.
I just called their office (which I believe is in Brisbane), and talked to a guy named Jamie, who is their Marketing and Sales fellow. Was nice enough, and apparently has had experience in TKD (mentioned he basically blew out his knees because of it). He didn't really know much about it's history from what I could tell, but told me it is 2600 years old, and that it was brought here to Australia by the founder from Burma.
They have expanded out to Sydney now as well, and have classes "somewhere in the CBD". I gave my e-mail, and will be contacted shortly in regards to a free lesson.
Don't know if I'll actually check it out (I've only just started training recently in kickboxing/boxing), but it could be useful in regards to finding out more info.
This is their contacts page; http://www.arakan.com.au/contact-us.php
no mention of a 2,660 year old martial art so far...some collaboration with the Japanese to trap the Brits but no actual fighting by the Arakan natives mentioned in the text.
I know the origins of Arakan first hand - the style comes out of Brisbane and the story about Burma is just a front. Anyone training Arakan ask your founder about his very short time spent basic training of LWSS and you will find out the truth.