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  1. #1
    Phrost's Avatar
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    Taxonomy: Properly Categorizing the Types of Martial Arts

    I guess Taxonomy would be the right word for this.

    It's high time we hashed out the various types/classifications of Martial Arts, once and for all. Based on previous discussions, here is what I believe we've come to consensus on over the years:

    • Sportfighting Styles
    • Self Defense Styles
    • Historical Recreation Styles
    • Demonstration Styles
    • Health and Fitness Styles (?)
    Are we in agreement that these categories pretty much cover the scope of the Martial Arts effectively, or do we need to make adjustments/additions to the list?

  2. #2
    Dark Overlord of the Bullshido Underworld supporting member
    Tom Kagan's Avatar
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    An alternate list of MA focuses:

    - Self-defense/professional use of force
    - Tradition/physical art/self-discipline
    - Spiritual/health
    - Sport/tournament
    - Demonstration
    Calm down, it's only ones and zeros.

    "Your calm and professional manner of response is really draining all the fun out of this. Can you reply more like Dr. Fagbot or something? Call me some names, mention some sand in my vagina or something of the sort. You can't expect me to come up with reasonable arguments man!" -- MaverickZ

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  3. #3
    sochin101's Avatar
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    Dear Phrost
    For clarification purposes, would it be possible for you to include examples for each category, so we're all starting off on the same page, so to speak?

  4. #4
    Phrost's Avatar
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    • Sportfighting Styles: Kickboxing, Boxing, Wrestling
    • Self Defense Styles: Krav Maga, etc
    • Historical Recreation Styles: Iaido
    • Demonstration Styles: Wushu, XMA
    • Health and Fitness Styles (?): Tae Bo?

  5. #5
    sochin101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phrost
    • Sportfighting Styles: Kickboxing, Boxing, Wrestling
    • Self Defense Styles: Krav Maga, etc
    • Historical Recreation Styles: Iaido
    • Demonstration Styles: Wushu, XMA
    • Health and Fitness Styles (?): Tae Bo?
    So, where would you put Shotokan, TKD, and the like?

    They'd fit in Tom's "Tradition/physical art/self-discipline" maybe. I'd drop the self-discipline, though. And the physical.

    Maybe your list needs a Traditional Martial Art bit?
    Last edited by sochin101; 3/28/2007 9:08am at .

  6. #6

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    Perhaps Ontology would better describe what you are trying to do than Taxonomy?

    I like the categories that Phrost posted - with regard to Sochin's question, I think that some arts may be put in more than one category, so for example, TKD might be put under sportfighting, or demonstration styles.

    Also, I wonder if it would be helpful to have a scoring or ranking system, so that within each style, you could get an idea as to the "aliveness" of the training (i.e. a 5 point scale, BJJ would be sportfighting and self-defense, with 5 points on each...TKD would under sportfighting might be say a 2 while under demonstration it would be like a 4)

    Edit: with regard to the scaling system, people on Bullshido could vote to determine the scale...
    Last edited by weechey; 3/28/2007 9:47am at .

  7. #7

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    I think that cardio kickboxing and boxercise count as health and fitness styles.

  8. #8
    sochin101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by weechey
    Perhaps Ontology would better describe what you are trying to do than Taxonomy?

    I like the categories that Phrost posted - with regard to Sochin's question, I think that some arts may be put in more than one category, so for example, TKD might be put under sportfighting, or demonstration styles.

    Also, I wonder if it would be helpful to have a scoring or ranking system, so that within each style, you could get an idea as to the "aliveness" of the training (i.e. a 5 point scale, BJJ would be sportfighting and self-defense, with 5 points on each...TKD would under sportfighting might be say a 2 while under demonstration it would be like a 4)

    Edit: with regard to the scaling system, people on Bullshido could vote to determine the scale...
    I suppose it depends on the purpose of the classification... if it's just for shits and gigles amongst the cognosenti, then we'd understand about the aliveness scale and how it related to another art, but if this was a project for the Bullshido.com consumer information doohickey, perhaps numbers and arts appearing in two places might add to the confusion of choosing a valid martial art.

    Something like Krav might get a 5 on self defence but a 1 on aliveness... something like full contact stick fighting is obviously going to get a 5 on aliveness, but might score low on SD because of the need to carry a stick around with you.
    An uninformed person might immediately assume (based on the scores) that Krav is better than whacking the **** out of someone with a stick full contact, and go and train with a Krav larper with plastic guns faking an Israeli accent.

  9. #9

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    Perhaps it isn't the arts that need to be classified, and scored, but the schools themselves...the point has been made here several times that any style can be trained with aliveness...its just that some do it much more than others.

    To allow for that variability, maybe individual schools should be evaluated on skill sets that we all agree define the different reasons people do martial arts. For example...
    1. Striking
    2. Grappling
    3. Self Defense
    4. Physical fitness
    5. Acrobatic art
    6.Historical re-creation

  10. #10
    Phrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sochin101
    So, where would you put Shotokan, TKD, and the like?

    They'd fit in Tom's "Tradition/physical art/self-discipline" maybe. I'd drop the self-discipline, though. And the physical.

    Maybe your list needs a Traditional Martial Art bit?
    I don't want to use "self discipline" because that's highly incidental and generally only used as a cop-out for people who have no intention of actually subjecting themselves to risk in their training.

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