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CMA obscure weapons documentary&discussion

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    CMA obscure weapons documentary&discussion

    The following link is a program produced by the discovery channel available on topdocumentaryfilms.com: http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/kung-...liest-weapons/

    In the film they showcase the "10 deadliest kung fu weapons". They show the usual ones most of us are familiar with and some that are more rare. (Spoiler alert) the film concludes with the number one most deadliest weapon being the flying guillotine and the legends and rumors of the weapon are discussed. CMA guys have a watch and tell me what you think.

    My questions: How true and accurate is this show? Have the weapons demoed actually ever been used to harm someone? I assume the more practical and historical weapons like the ge (polearm) have their obvious documented use and practicality. However, what about other weapons like the fan for emample? Are there any cases of a fan actually being used to kill someone? How about the "antlers" (circular/crescent blade thing)?

    Feel free to comment on any weapons in the video or link and discuss others you are more familiar with.

    My biggest problem with CMA weapons is that as a person with a casual interest in CMA all the weapons stuff I see appears to largely be for demonstration and performance purposes. To me the Ren Faire crowd appears to have a better grasp on the historical use of weapons in actual combat than the CMA community. I don't mean to sound like an ass but as a FMA practitioner I have a genuine interest in weapons and some CMA weapons especially interest me. Where are the practical CMA weapons practitioners?

    #2
    I didn't see the show so I can't really comment on that. As for practical CMA weaponist, I've only ever met a few. In my experience, the part of the kung fu community that's into practicality and fighting tend to focus on unarmed stuff (san da, pankration etc), while the weapons folks tend to be more into the larping side of things. I can think of just one of my old kung fu partners who had a real interest in weapons that extended beyond kung fu forms (was always down to weapon spar, and had a side interest in learning the European longsword). There are groups that are focused on sparring with the jian and dao though. You'd probably have more luck looking into that than into CMA styles in general- weapon fighting tends to be just a small part of those styles; in a CMA sword style the practitioners are most definitely interested.

    Comment


      #3
      I've seen one legit, IMO, org trying to introduce Tai Chi Sword sparring. We have the thread somewhere, but I am feeling lazy.

      CMA weapons are larpy unless you go to a really good school. Even then, I might still say larping.

      Oh and I do have two all steel fans. Larp larp larp.

      Comment


        #4
        I saw this when it aired. It's National Geographic; they do have a certain journalistic integrity. Some of their CMA coverage is not that great, but they do try to check their sources objectively (as with most subjects). In fact NeoGeo is one of the first big organizations that I know of that tried to start testing kung fu claims with actual science (e.g. "Fight Science"). Note I said "tried" because some (not all) of their tests were kind of silly. I think they may have also been hoodwinked by at least one Chun Master. But what NeoGeo does is definitely a step in the right direction.

        Based on what I've read to date, the more "standard" weapons (saber, spear, etc) tended to be found amongst the military, and the training forms were very basic but techniques obviously worked. The exotic weapons like the deer knife, hooked swords etc were often civilian weapons. Historical relics really, they are a neat combination of ancient weaponsmithing and creative Chinese design. Why put hooks on swords? Why make sure the polearm blade is exactly 100 degrees? The Chinese were good at math and engineering long before most cultures and warlike as well, so they put their creative energies into their weaponmaking.

        That said I'm sure for every one decent, efficient, lethal Chinese weapon maybe there are ten that failed on delivery, died on the battlefield, or only survived because they are, in fact, so odd looking.
        Last edited by W. Rabbit; 12/19/2011 1:48pm, .
        '�I am no advocate of passivity,� Coffin Mott said in an 1860 speech. �Quakerism, as I understand it, does not mean quietism. The early Friends were agitators; disturbers of the peace; and were more obnoxious in their day to charges, which are now so freely made, than we are.�'

        My Glossary: https://www.bullshido.net/forums/sho...d.php?t=129294

        Comment


          #5
          Dude stop. Fight Science? No. Step in the right direction? No.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by It is Fake View Post
            Dude stop. Fight Science? No. Step in the right direction? No.
            I said I didn't think Fight Science did their show (or science) very well. I also know about their interview with Chun Master What's His Name, who is allegedly unbeatable yet there are no videos of him ever fighting anyone.

            What I think is the right direction is that they're even inviting scientists to come look at Martial Arts claims at all.

            Some of it was definitely downright silly, like when they compared the tiger playfully swatting the soccer ball with the "tiger style" Wushu guy whacking it with full force.

            "OMG, HE'S AS STRONG AS THE TIGER".

            I showed that video to my sifu and he said it was, and I quote, "crap".
            Last edited by W. Rabbit; 12/19/2011 1:56pm, .
            '�I am no advocate of passivity,� Coffin Mott said in an 1860 speech. �Quakerism, as I understand it, does not mean quietism. The early Friends were agitators; disturbers of the peace; and were more obnoxious in their day to charges, which are now so freely made, than we are.�'

            My Glossary: https://www.bullshido.net/forums/sho...d.php?t=129294

            Comment


              #7
              Spanish knife makers used to make large presentation/display versions of knives to keep in their store, like this:

              Not practical, but it shows the craftsmanship skills of the guy that made it.

              Similarly, European blacksmiths would often have extremely large swords in their collection. A functional longsword weighs a few pounds, but they've found old examples weighing like 15lbs and too big for combat. The rationale for making them is the same as above (or they were used as display/parade weapons when doing public marches and such).

              I wonder if something like this accounts for some of the odd Chinese weapons out there. A nice pair of deer antler knives would show some advanced bladecrafting abilities by its maker. Add thousands of illiterate people over hundreds of years and a little creativity and maybe you end up with fighting styles around these relics.

              I think that a lot of people take old weapons stories at face value because even exotic edged weapons could be dangerous. A sharpened pair of these looks deadly enough:
              Last edited by Permalost; 12/19/2011 2:10pm, .

              Comment


                #8
                I tend to agree with IIF ,,most of the weapons crap is LARPing and used by schools to impress potential students ( customers?).
                That said..when I was doing CMA it was a refreshing break now and then to spend a class on the staff/spear or do some baton work.
                Now that I think of it.the weapons rack at my old club didn't have any of the 'impractical' one's on it.
                Unless you consider a tiger fork or a kwan impractical.

                Here's one I found that I hadn't seen before..a ' monk's spade ' set:
                " If one wants to have a friend one must also want to wage war for him: and to wage war one must be capable of being an enemy." - Fr. Nietzsche 'On The Friend' Thus Spake Zarathustra

                Comment


                  #9
                  That is the chan zhang, a weapon largely based on a shovel, which I think anyone would argue is a handy weapon and tool.

                  It is my favorite CMA weapon and the next I think I'll pick up after some staff training.

                  http://www.bullshido.net/forums/show...=104043&page=1
                  '�I am no advocate of passivity,� Coffin Mott said in an 1860 speech. �Quakerism, as I understand it, does not mean quietism. The early Friends were agitators; disturbers of the peace; and were more obnoxious in their day to charges, which are now so freely made, than we are.�'

                  My Glossary: https://www.bullshido.net/forums/sho...d.php?t=129294

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Jacob Marley's Ghost View Post
                    Here's one I found that I hadn't seen before..a ' monk's spade ' set:
                    The monk's spade is fun. Traded a machinist a month of classes for him to make me one, and I think I could take on a tank with it.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I don't understand why few pursue "practical" CMA weapon combat. The Chinese had a large number of tools that were absolutely great for killing people. The LARP saddens me.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Chili Pepper View Post
                        The monk's spade is fun. Traded a machinist a month of classes for him to make me one, and I think I could take on a tank with it.
                        That's just too awesome. I have to keep that in mind, since I'll be approved to give lessons pretty soon, and I know a good blacksmith lol.

                        I don't know much about these more exotic weapons. Now, I study Hung Ga, but my favorite CMA is actually Baguazhang because I just love the beauty of the form/circle walk, tied into the deadliness of any well practiced martial art, and from what I've learned, the deer horn knives (deer antler crescents or whatever they were called in the video) are actually a pretty popular Baguazhang weapon. This thread has definitely sparked my interest, but sadly the steel fan form in my schools curriculum is one of the last forms you learn, and even though I'm close to the half way point, I'm still pretty far away from it. :P

                        All that being said, the philosophy of my school, as I'm sure is the philosophy of many other schools is basically that: nobody is really allowed to carry swords/spears anymore, or we have no need for it, because we don't have tigers and bears attacking us, nor do we have people from rival schools constantly attacking us on the street, meaning we simply don't need to carry weapons with us all the time. However, the way to wield a weapon still holds much value, for example, swinging any weapon around with proper form is going to be a great physical workout to make you stronger, and also the footwork of wielding a spear or kwan do can be very useful in a fight when you're empty handed.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by yli View Post
                          I don't understand why few pursue "practical" CMA weapon combat. The Chinese had a large number of tools that were absolutely great for killing people. The LARP saddens me.
                          The dao is a good old standby, prob my third favorite after spade and long staff. This guy has done this a few years now in Chinatown. I just finished learning this same form.

                          If you guys want a video of me you'll have to wait until next year thought lol...need to practice.

                          2009:


                          2011:

                          Last edited by W. Rabbit; 12/23/2011 11:51pm, .
                          '�I am no advocate of passivity,� Coffin Mott said in an 1860 speech. �Quakerism, as I understand it, does not mean quietism. The early Friends were agitators; disturbers of the peace; and were more obnoxious in their day to charges, which are now so freely made, than we are.�'

                          My Glossary: https://www.bullshido.net/forums/sho...d.php?t=129294

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Are you a yee's hung ga student, Ice Hole?

                            EDIT: I ask because I am, and in the 2011 vid, my sifu is the black man playing the small cymbals on the left. XD And the performer is my big training cousin Erwin.

                            (off topic, but did you get your name from an episode of Whose Line is it Anyway?)

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by csharp.negative View Post
                              Are you a yee's hung ga student, Ice Hole?

                              EDIT: I ask because I am, and in the 2011 vid, my sifu is the black man playing the small cymbals on the left. XD And the performer is my big training cousin Erwin.

                              (off topic, but did you get your name from an episode of Whose Line is it Anyway?)
                              I was when this was taken, in fact I was with a different Lion team a street over when this was taken.

                              I am no longer officially with Yee's but still train under a longtime student of your sigung so we do in fact share lineage. It's right in my style field, can't you read all the Chinese yet??? :)

                              In fact I'm not the only one here, there are a few others.

                              This is my Christmas name, btw.
                              Last edited by W. Rabbit; 12/24/2011 12:45am, .
                              '�I am no advocate of passivity,� Coffin Mott said in an 1860 speech. �Quakerism, as I understand it, does not mean quietism. The early Friends were agitators; disturbers of the peace; and were more obnoxious in their day to charges, which are now so freely made, than we are.�'

                              My Glossary: https://www.bullshido.net/forums/sho...d.php?t=129294

                              Comment

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