Essay about Martial Arts

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Martial Arts

I am a martial artist. When I first started, I might have said I take karate. Here in America, both of those statements are technically true. We tend to generalize all martial arts as “karate.” In reality, only some of what we see is actually karate. The word karate is Japanese, as is the style, and it means “the way of the empty hand.” It was created in the 15th century by Okinawan peasants who were not allowed to have weapons by royal decree. Thus they developed ways of protecting themselves without the use of weapons, or by using regular objects such as sticks (Hassell 14). Today there are many, many styles of this art. There are many other styles, such as tae kwon do, kung fu, capoeira, and many
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There is a base for the style, it’s not just jumbled together.

The core of our training is split into three components. Tae kwon do, kempo, and Lee Jun Fan Gung Fu. From no belt to green belt we study tae kwon do. This is a Korean martial art, which also has numerous styles. We study three: mu duk kwon (china fist), chun do kwon (blue cottage), and yang do wan (young dragon). The first has more of Chinese influence, the second is basically Korean, and the third is a created style. Now, you’re probably wondering what makes tae kwon do different from karate. Tae kwon do (which means the way of the flying feet and the punching hands) is mostly a kicking style. There is very little hand movement, and kicking is a key component. It is also a very formal, stiff style. In other words, every move is very pronounced and there are short pauses to show power. If your uniform makes a snapping sound, you did the move correctly. Forms, patterns of movements, are also very important. Forms are what makes a martial art. If there are no forms, then you are just kicking and punching. I’ll go in to detail on forms later.

Once you attain green belt, you begin training in kempo, which is a bit of combination of styles as well, though mostly influenced by Japanese and Chinese martial arts. This is where I am in my training. I will study this style until I attain blue belt. Kempo, meaning fist way, is mainly hand movements, with very little

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