This page is presented as a reference for interesting Youtube or other video of a martial arts nature.
Or at least things I find interesting… The videos and comments can be found at Martial Arts Related Videos
My review guide is out of 4, and part marks only mean that it is better than the previous level but not quite to the next.
1 – this video is likely only shown due to the amount of errors or inconsistencies that are presented, and is not endorsed. Also, sometimes videos that have been posted that have material in bad taste would fall under this category. Videos that make claims for what they will cover but fall short. Or videos that have made a higher claim than what they deliver. Letter Grade – C
2 – This video has good information, although some of the presentation may be misinterpreted or otherwise misrepresented. Overall this video provides good information on the topic and addresses what they set out to. Letter Grade – B
3 – This video has great information and conveys the scope of the issue they wish to review. This is good reference material and will assist the viewer with finding more information regarding the topic presented. Letter Grade – A
4 – This video is a rare find, and holds excellent information for the level they are presenting to, IE an Advanced video covering advanced concepts, or a basic video covering fundamental concepts. Either way, an excellent resource to use. Letter Grade – A+
As with every study, a review of the basics is often necessary. Considering the wide spectrum of difference in understanding between the East and West, here is a PBS video on the way of the Samurai. It covers plenty of aspects, but focuses on the first contact between Portugal and Japan, and the consequent Sakoku period of the 17th century.
There are many concepts covered in this video, and I am sure we’ll touch on many of them through discussions.
Thoughts on the video?
A new Post category for Martial Arts related videos has been created – http://harmonybudo.com/?cat=7
I thought that, rather than simply putting videos up for people to watch, I would put some points of discussion as to why I have them up or “favourited” in this blog.
So, to begin, here are some thoughts on Samurai Spirit: Karate (http://harmonybudo.com/?page_id=72)
I appreciated the Hosts desire to explore other Arts and participate in their training. This, I believe, is crucial to understanding your own Art.
Before I go into this, I would advise that people do this sort of thing at three times in their training, but always be mindful of their “home” or “root” Art. The decision to change this ‘home’ or ‘root’ should never be made lightly, and should always come only after careful consideration – the path you start on is not always the one you finish, but you can get lost if you constantly change direction.
The three stages of training that I believe a student should explore other Martial Arts are:
A) At the beginning. Never go to a place just because of the convenience, or solely because you know someone that trains there, etc. Although convenience and friendship can make the training more available and social, a student should explore many different styles/schools prior to selecting one, and then choose which fits best with their ideas of what they want to learn, etc.
This may mean going to different schools for one month at a time. No, you will not learn anything of substance, but you will get a basic feel for what is out there – and that is why I would recommend to anyone who is interested in learning this practice.
B) At the middle of your Intermediate level. It is here you can ‘double-check’ your choice, but it should also be at this stage that a student has a solid enough background in training that they can see the applications of techniques within their own system, and how they train their body to enable these techniques. This nascent understanding can show them how other schools/styles do things. This stage will also allow a student to make an educated choice as to whether or not they wish to continue in the style they initially chose.
I am a firm advocate of staying with one style and later adding to this understanding with other styles/training, but occasionally circumstances require change and staying in one style from beginner to advanced is not always applicable.
C) Upon achieving an advanced rank, so soon thereafter. I alluded to this above, and the reasoning is essentially the same – to take your new knowledge and see how others interpret the same things, thereby rounding out your training and understanding. At this point any study in other Martial Arts are essentially additions to your primary/root/home style, which is like learning a dialect to a language. You will still have the basics of the language, but some phrases may mean something completely different.
And I have digressed from the main point. The thing I liked most about this video was the Hosts willingness to learn more, and seek out different interpretations – I have the utmost respect for that. The concept of the video is essentially the mission statement of this whole website… Seeking the Way.
What I did not like about this video was the narration. Unfortunately there were a few times in the video that the Narrator would make statements with extremely broad strokes that, to the non-practitioner, would invite confusion. For example – when they speak about different styles of Karate, they said that there are styles that focus on fight training, body hardening, and kata. Each of these practices was stated as though there was one style that focused on fight training or sparring, another on body hardening, and another on kata practice.
The issue is not that there are individual styles that focus on these things, but instead all of these things are used in various degrees in almost every Karate style.
And then there is consideration for individual teaching styles, as in the “Western” world, there is a serious depreciation and devaluing of kata as a worthwhile training practice – it has, in many systems, been relegated to simply a ‘check in the box’ requirement for advancement in rank.
I know that I will be including one of my writings on this issue at a later date, and will link that to this then.
Although I enjoyed the video, and there are great references and some good information, I couldn’t justify giving this video more than 2.75/4