I thought I would upload a few pics from our belt testing this Saturday just in case anyone is still wondering whether or not Modern Arnis schools spar for testing. After about two and a half hours of pad work, skills testing, and attack scenarios, we finished with three rounds of live stick sparring with fencing masks and gloves for protection. Sticks were 3/8 inch width, 28 inch long rattan.
You know the bruises are going to be good when they show up immediate after the contact is over. One day later, they look even better. :happy7:
Wow, ok then, just from the pictures I can tell the modern arnis you practice is a lot more hardcore than what I encountered. The only sparring we had was with foam sticks and a lot like point sparring with sticks.
Padded sticks are great for beginners or kids to use during sparring. A good shot from a padded stick will leave a nice red mark and sting quite a bit but will not leave any lasting bruise or pain. Getting hit by a padded stick in the head with no protective gear hurts much more than getting hit with a live stick while wearing a fencing helmet. They definitely have their place in training. For example, we use padded sticks from time to time as a way to get people who have never stick sparred used to being hit and used to hitting others with a stick. After they have done that a few times, they start transitioning over to live sticks for sparring. Coming into our training group, I had never sparred like this before. The transition to live stick fighting was made much easier because we fought with padded sticks several times before we moved to the real ones. In some ways, padded sticks are harder to work with as they are very difficult to pull blocks with since they are flexible. I consider them a good tool to use from time to time during training any FMA system.
Modern Arnis is a very tough art to try to paint with a broad brush. I would encourage people to look at individual clubs and judge them, rather than the art as a whole. Even groups within the same organizations are doing very different things. That is simply the way that Remy taught. Our group spars and does intense pad work in addition to other skills training. A group in the same org. which is located about 35 miles away from us does not. If you came in to observe a class on some nights even in our group you would go away thinking that we did absolutely zero live training and that everything was compliance based. If you came on another night you would go away and report that we are all insane because all we do is hit each other with rattan sticks and spar.
Whatever point you may have to make was lost in the jumble of profanity. For someone with such pride in what you practice, you are representing your art poorly.
Like jwinch2 said, foam and point sparring are good for certain situations, especially kids training.
Originally Posted by legomepanda
My first post on this site and it's in the Modern Arnis section. It figures. General conception of Modern Arnis? Boy, will you get polarised opinions on that one. So my 12 cents worth:
1. Remy Presas Modern Arnis (RP MA) is not a hard-core, battlefield oriented art. Remy Presas was a fighter but in the US and as a teacher, he was more of a propagator of the arts.
2. How about curriculum? What curriculum? Unfortunately he taught in a seminar style that I like to refer to as the "confetti approach". Take a fist full of confetti, fire it in the air and what stuck to you was what you came home with. There are several of the senior students who have come up with their own curriculums for teaching what they were taught. I have probably strayed the farthest from RP MA in my curriculum.
3. The forms or "anyos". Stick anyos were in place back in the PI and the empty hand anyos were a product of the US. In my group I have replaced theempty hand anyos with the Tactical Forms. Much shorter and they are templates instead of "FMA kata".
4. The "Shotokan connection". RP learned Shotokan karate from (if my info is correct) from Dr. Guillermo Lengson, who in turn, learned some balintawak eakrima from RP. The Shotokan influence shows up mainly in the first 5 anyos. Not much beyond that.
5. What about "the art within your art" business? I don't know if this was an epiphany of RP or someone else's idea but this was the method RP revolutionised the seminar business. Up to the early 1980's, seminars were pretty much closed dojo affairs. RP was the man who got players from varying styles to come to him by showing them the connections between their arts and FMA. Bloody brilliant.
6. Modern Arnis as taught by RP was not a free-sparring art. Dog Brothers we aren't and the flailing point stick fighting we aren't either. RP MA was more of an attributes development art. I was a regional, national and world free-sparring champion so I use free-sparring my my teaching. I use a reasonably solid padded cane, no hand gear or helmets and go for bony targets that break on impact. It is, in this manner, point fighting like except I disregard "meat shots". I'll trade a thigh shot for a noggin conk.
7. Modern Arnis 8 years after the death of the founder is an interesting proposition. As there was no established curriculum in the first place, it has been "every man for himself". I am in Boston as I type this and I was talking to theman who brought me in for the seminar I am teaching. He said he had hooked up with a guy who is a blackbelt in Modern Arnis who didn't teach like I did. That pretty much says it in the hat. Neither good nor bad, it is what it is.
8. Oh yes, belt rank. This is pretty much the influence of the Japanese and Korean arts in the PI. Taekwondo is bigger than arnis or eskrima in the homeland. Also, RP was no fool. He was coming to live in a country that has had a ranking system ever since the inception of oriental martial arts there. It's a no-brainer to roll with the environment you are in.
That's all I have to say until I think of more. Oh, one last thing - where the hell am I coming from? I am one of the longest continuing training students of RP in the US. I began with RP in 1980 and was under him til his death in 2001. I've been in the martial arts since 1966, 43 years this November.
Over and out.
Thank you for the well written response. I hope that you stick around and post more. I took a look at your site and you seem to have a pretty vast amount of experience that would be a benefit to Bullshido.
Welcome to Bullshido.
You're welcome. I'll keep my eyes open to see what to comment on.
Dan's a great guy and a helluva writer. If you are looking for Modern Arnis in the written form then check out his site and if inclined get a book!
Jwinch2 nice bruises. It should be noted that a lot of Modern Arnis guy's do spar with rattan but not everybody and as jwinch2 mentioned it does vary from instructor to instructor!
I will jump in here and second the words already stated that Dan is a great guy. He has been very helpful to me in the past year or so and I really appreciate it. I am not on here often Dan but it is great to see you here as it is on other sites.
Of course, now I am going back to re-read what I wrote earlier to make sure I got it right now that Dan is here! LOL Any screw-ups or mis-quotes are mine alone, just to get the disclaimer out there early! HA!
Last edited by jwinch2; 10/31/2009 8:05pm at .
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