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Lemen
8/13/2003 12:14am,
I searched on the net for a while and read a lot of information on different martial art styles but I am still unsure of what I want to pursue. I figured that with my knowledge and love of personal feedback, a forum like this would be a perfect place to pose my dilemma.

First, some information about myself. I'm a 19 year old college sophomore. I am a bodybuilder and have been training for about three years now. I am 5'6" and weigh 170lbs at 9% bodyfat(7pt caliper). I eat a quite clean diet and I focus on explosive power and heavy weights in the gym, mainly to pack on mass and gain strength. I used to weigh 173lbs three years ago, but it was all fat, then through diet and exercise I dropped down to 138 at my lowest. Since then, I've rebuilt myself back up. I'm a very knowledgeable person when it comes to training and diet and my former college major was Exercise Science. I am thinking of getting certified as a PT so I can make some extra money on the side during summers. Anyways, that's me.

When I was 8 years old I took Tae Kwon Do and I earned one black stripe...and promptly quit. I had the worst attention span when I was young and if I didn't feel like going, I wouldn't. Lame, I know.

When I was 14, I entered Kendo. My grandfather is one of the highest ranked in the world, I think only a few have his level. He's been featured in magazines and interviews and everything. He was proud of me when I started and I kept it up for a couple months, but once again, I was young and easily frustrated and I left the sport.

So now I'm 19, a completely different person and the ability to commit in many different ways. I never miss a gym session, I eat clean all the time, I have a girlfriend of almost three years and I got a 4.0gpa last semester. I am ready to commit to any martial art endeavor I pursue.

Finally, I've always been a fan of grappling. When messing around with friends, any punches thrown at me I usually just try to avoid or catch and then I promptly use combined strength and leverage to throw them down and then I get them in some rudimentary hold to get them to stop. I want a style that allows someone like me to use strength but also combine it with finesse. I don't mind a style that contains striking and grappling. Mainly, I'm looking for a style that utilizes someone with my stature and strength to its' advantage.

This has been a long post and I apologize but hey, if I want answers, I better give them first.

Thanks a lot to anyone who replies, I'll be checking back often. I am really excited and am looking forward to finally doing it.

deus ex machina
8/13/2003 12:19am,
What school do you go to? (Just curious.)

~
danny

"That baby better watch his mouth. I rape kids like him as part of my warm-up for raping teenagers, grown men, and eventually charging rhinos." - Boyd

"Deus practices the love that dare not speak its name." - Samuel Browning

Tote
8/13/2003 12:22am,
Muay thai, BJJ, and Wrestling

Lemen
8/13/2003 12:32am,
I go to RVCC, that may make sense, but I'm xfering to Rutgers at the end of this year. Oh yeah, I'm from NJ.

While wrestling seems interesting, I am unaware of actual wrestling schools in my area...besides, I personally don't want to focus 100% on grappling, I do want to learn striking techniques. Also, I am not sure if wrestling on a non-school level is divided into weight classes as well and all that junk, etc etc. And are we talking something like Greco-Roman or more freestyle type education?

Still, I think I would rather go for something that is a mix of grappling and striking but a stronger lean towards grappling.

Thanks so far for the replies, I'm checking out Muay Thai and BJJ a little more in-depth tho I've read some good stuff so far.

Waterboxer
8/13/2003 2:24am,
Xing Yi will teach you how to maximise your power potensial extreamly quickly.

Taijiquan would teach you how to stop using your muscle and start using your structure.

Boxing would teach you how to deliver powerfull strikes and provide excerlent conditioning.

Wrestling would allow you to properly understand the mechanics of leverage and mass in motion and how these can be applied in your favor.

BJJ would give you a great education in ground submissions and positional control.



All of this however is totaly dependent on the skill of the instructor and your ability to pick up whatever skills it is they are capable of imparting.

The best advice in your situation is to go around to different schools and have a talk and a train with them and try to find a place that you could see yourself comming back to reguarly.


I also have to say it seems like a crying shame to have such skilled hands so close to home and to have passed them up. I would be seeking out your grandfather and seeing just what he has to impart as well if i was you.

Either way good luck in your search and dont be scared to seek out people from different approches to try and understand how everything fits into place.

fuzzie
8/13/2003 3:31am,
Still, I think I would rather go for something that is a mix of grappling and striking but a stronger lean towards grappling.

I'd say we got a fresh new shootfighter in our midst. :)
Seriously, shooto has 60% grappling and 40% standup. With your dedication and
(and not the least!) bodymass you should make quick progress. If youre not
a huge anti-talent you would be a good shooter within a year.

Now if you want tradition and history instead of self defence and sparring,
then i would suggest you would make your grandfather happy and choose kendo.
Its all crap, but at least you will make an old man happy. :)

Shi Heng Che
8/13/2003 4:42am,
I think choosing a good teacher is important. A teacher whether good or bad affects the student in many ways.
Shi Guo Lin is considering starting a college program for students who wish to learn Shaolin GongFu Ch'an but if i remember correctly i think he said at first only in NY area.

I also agree with Waterboxer because Xing Yi is very powerful and is not difficult to learn.

Good luck in your search!

Paradox
8/13/2003 5:18am,
I agree with fuzzie, if i had a connection to the sword arts like your grandfather, i will maximise this advantageous connection. However, as you had said you are a bulky fella Xing Yi may not be your passion. Xing Yi is internal, and is intended mainly for maximum damage with minimal effort. I thought you might be more interested in the sporting side of martial arts, maybe the following:
Judo/JuJitsu/BJJ - the types of ju-jitsu involves both striking and grappling; the stronger and more agile you are the better. Judo is the pure sport of Jujitsu - you throw and do groundwork but striking is limited.
Karate/Taekwondo - basically the best acheivers in these arts are the more muscular (as well as aerobically fit) people. Less throws but very active (make sure you apply for competition and sparring)

If you want to be the most efficient fighter in terms of real conflict and self defense, perhaps you may consider wing-chun, ju-jitsu and if you have the patience, taichi

Hope i helped ya big fella good luck and have fun.

PizDoff
8/13/2003 10:02am,
"I am really excited and am looking forward to finally doing it."
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHHAHA!

--
Shut up and Gracie train!

Phrosty finally got my article up, all come and look! Fighting Multiples
http://bullshido.com/article_read.asp?id=162

PizDoff
8/13/2003 10:48am,
sorry,

"I used to weigh 173lbs three years ago, but it was all fat, then through diet and exercise I dropped down to 138 at my lowest."
damn!


Yes, wrestling any kind.
Submission wrestling wouldn't hurt.

nothing wrong with training MMA, Vale Tudo or shootfighting (pretty much mix of BJJ and MT)
or any other style

--
Shut up and Gracie train!

Phrosty finally got my article up, all come and look! Fighting Multiples
http://bullshido.com/article_read.asp?id=162

Phrost
8/13/2003 11:02am,
You're fortunate to live where you do because you have a wide variety of martial arts schools to choose from.

At the very least, look for a school that has a real competition team that competes in full contact or submission wrestling events. Many traditional martial arts schools have such teams.

Just on a lark, I'd try to find a San Shou (not San Soo) Kung Fu school. San Shou competition rules are like kickboxing with throws. So you get some grappling in, and learn some killer moves for self defense as well.

You would be neglecting the full groundwork you could get at a MMA/BJJ/Vale Tudo school. If you got really lucky, you'd find a San Shou school right next to a Judo dojo.

Omega Supreme
8/13/2003 11:07am,
Gee, thanks Phrost I was about to roast some of the other recommendations. You're nicer than I.

Anyway, analyzing your body type a striking art in general would be detrimental. A shorter person actually does better with striking arts especially when you can augment them with strength.

San Shou or a school that does San Shou would be excellent. Ground fighting will help teach you how not to use your strength and conserve energy. If you are looking for traditional I would scrutinize any instructor making sure they aren't sticking to tradition for the sake of naivity or ego.

Peace.

Official WTDude Badass Evil Genius

tallpaul50
8/13/2003 12:53pm,
I don't have the exposer to all these different "systems" that you "big city people" have, but from his descriptoion of power lifting and building big muscles, wouldn't judo be an obvious choice because of the strength and leverage needed? Also, he's short..so short and strong...sounds like judo to me?

Hell, I've never even heard of San Shou and Xing Yi...I feel so deprived (depraved?)! :o(

He who dies with the most toys...still DIES!

JKDChick
8/13/2003 12:58pm,
I'm going to do what I always do, and recommend a Progressive Fighting Systems gym -- if you find an instructor you likem it will be a very casual experience, with lots of different training, standup and ground.

Here's a link to the NJ instructors -- you can email some of them:

http://www.fighting.net/instr_search_results.php?searchtype=searchstate&xs tate=NJ

"Actually, when practiced properly, such and such art causes oceans to rise and cities to fall and the great Pharoh's army to shudder beneath your might." -- Boyd

Omega Supreme
8/13/2003 1:00pm,
I don't have the exposer to all these different "systems" that you "big city people" have, but from his descriptoion of power lifting and building big muscles, wouldn't judo be an obvious choice because of the strength and leverage needed? Also, he's short..so short and strong...sounds like judo to me?

Hell, I've never even heard of San Shou and Xing Yi...I feel so deprived (depraved?)! :o(

He who dies with the most toys...still DIES!



Don't makee me slap you......

San shou...throwing & striking

Judo...throwing.

Yes, I know you prequalified yourself but we're glad you agreed with us in a round about way.

Official WTDude Badass Evil Genius

Angry-Monkey
8/13/2003 1:04pm,
I agree with fuzzie, if i had a connection to the sword arts like your grandfather, i will maximise this advantageous connection. However, as you had said you are a bulky fella Xing Yi may not be your passion. Xing Yi is internal, and is intended mainly for maximum damage with minimal effort.


In xing yi's defense, Kumar Frantzis is a large man who excels at the internal arts. He is a practitioner of Tai Chi (Several families), Bagua and Xing Yi and is well respected in the internal arts community.
And there's also the common joke about having "a belly full of chi" for the larger folks.

I say that some time spent in the internal arts would have a great impact on you in teaching you how to use your structure (like someone else said) along with your strength. If you can learn how to fight with a soft touch using mechanics and technique, once you apply your strength to that... you'll be a monster.