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Samurai Armor Part 1
The first prototype for Japanese samurai armor came about in the form of the yoroi during the Gempei War of 1181-1185. The weight of the yoroi was around 60lb. The upper-body armor of the samurai was known as the 'Do'. This comprised of the 'Sode', the suspended shoulder and upper-arm protection plates. The Sode had hoops by which silk cord was tied and then fixed to the back of the armor in an 'agemaki' / decorative knotted tassel. Guards were also placed over the shoulder cords, and a leather plate placed across the bow cords to prevent them from been cut or becoming ensnared during a skirmish.
A samurai's protective helmet, or Kabuto typically consisted of from eight to a dozen plates all fixed together with cone shaped bolts. Much like in the military of other cultures, a samurai's helmet would display the samurai's rank and his group or clan, and often be very elaborate and decorative looking. As many samurai had long hair, their ponytails would protrude through the tehen, a gap left in the centre of the helmets crown.
Shikoro is the name of the thick five-plated protector of the back of the head, neck and the cheekbone which was fastened to the bowl of the helmet. The top four plates of the Shikoro would be upturned to create the fukigaeshi. The idea of the fukigaeshi was to prevent the vertical slicing of the shikoro's horizontal fastening chords. A visor is also on the front of helmet and is known as the mabisashi. This would not only help to keep the sunlight out of the samurai's eyes, but its protrusion would also act as a degree of protection for the face from the extended and downward strike of the enemy's sword.
As part of the samurai attire, mainly for those of higher importance an eboshi, a silk cap-like headgear would be worn under the helmet. As the samurai during this early time of the Gempei War fought much on horseback and utilized bows and arrows, the right arm of the standard samurai soldier had no restricting protection to allow for the drawing back of the bow. A light protective sleeve was worn on the left arm.
Not all fighters during the Gempei War were of the samurai class, and therefore were equipped differently and wore a different style of lighter armor called the 'Do Maru'. A body Wrap style of armor resting on the shoulders and fastening under the right armpit was far less restricting than the yoroi. It was based on this freer design of armor that development would be made for the samurai's armor of the future.
Tai-Chi for the Masses--and Others
Kuang Ping was the T'ai-chi set favored by Yang Lu-Chan, the man who brought forward the "Yang" style in the mid-1800's, now so popular throughout the world. Kuang Ping is what the man trained with himself.
Eight Simple Rules for Saving Your Life
Let's put the non-lethal fantasy to rest.1.
Generating More Power from Hip Rotation - Lessons from Martial Arts
One of the important lessons of Martial Arts training is the ability to use hip rotation as a way to generate power and speed for maximum impact.Martial artists know that the hips are where the body's 'center of gravity' is located.
Do not believe that practicing "by rote" 1-2-3,etc. type "responses" to street attacks is a viable or particularly useful training exercise.
Martial Training as a Timeless Portal
Thanks to several centuries of enlightened teachings by extraordinary men in the martial disciplines, we don't have to be restricted to lives of getting and spending, waiting in quiet desperation for the pain to cease.Most of us in the Arts focus on the tasks in front of our noses (the correct hand forms/kicks/body alignments), forgetting our option to consciously evolve along the way to physical perfection.
Expect the Unexpected Grass Hopper
The Myth perpetuated by Self Defense Oriented Martial ArtsI just received the following Email. I felt it needed to be shared because I feel a lot of people feel the same way?"Hello Damian,I ran across your website searching for what was out there for self defense information and have found myself researching your and Mr.
Safety Awareness & Self Defense: Circle of Safety
Safety Awareness & Self Defense is the responsibility of each individual. Knowing your surroundings and being aware of potential dangers is your first step towards self-defense.
Judo Nagewaza (Throwing Technique) In The Street
How practical are throwing techniques (nagewaza) for self-defense or street-fighting? NOT VERY!The Japanese themselves have a saying, "One year for newaza (ground technique), TEN YEARS for nagewaza (Throwing technique)". It takes ten times as long to become proficient at throwing than it does at ground fighting.
Aikido Philosophy: An Oriental Concept of Energy, Self, and Mind
PrefaceThere are many different ways to understand Aikido philosophy and perceive, utilize, and benefit from energy. What I offer here is one of many ways.
About four years ago Carl recommended we start using the Bogu during our kumite (sparring practice). This method was developed in Okinawa and then found its way into mainland Japan and eventually to the U.
Who Created Tai Chi Chuan (Tai Chi Boxing)?
I have read a number of books, articles, and novels, and have watched movies and television series that touched on the origins of Tai Chi Chuan (Tai Chi Boxing), and the question, "Who Created Tai Chi Chuan?" made me concern very much!Although knowing the origins or the source of Tai Chi Chuan is not going to have much effects on your learning and practicing of the art, it is my responsibility to share with the masses of what I have found out. And understanding the origins of something that we loved so much about will make us appreciate the understand it better, if not improving our skills.
Samurai Armor Part 1
The first prototype for Japanese samurai armor came about in the form of the yoroi during the Gempei War of 1181-1185. The weight of the yoroi was around 60lb.
What To Expect When You Least Expect It
The time you will be attacked you will most likely be:DistractedOut numberedAloneThere will be no back upYou will be in the fight of your life.Specific Defenses don't work.
One of the 'mystical' aspects of the martial arts has always been the ability to feel another persons intention.Sensing intention gives a person the ability to be in instant control of a potentially violent encounter, and it's one of the ways we use the martial arts to test our energy work and meditation skills in Hoshin.
Fight Simulator Theory for Reality Based Street Defense
This is such a powerful tool that it should leave no question unanswered for you and allow you to create an infinite number of techniques and drills. As this is a principle rather than a technique based system, here are the principles:PRINCIPLE1: you get what you train forPRINCIPLE2: if you want a specific answer, ask a specific questionWhat's the problem with martial arts and artists? Why do they argue so much? Why cant we find one style that is the best? After all we all only have two eyes, two arms, two legs and one head.
Martial Arts Strength Training
According to various sources on the internet, a 1996 article in Iron Man Magazine revealed Bruce Lee's workout. In addition to his cardio and karate workouts, Lee lifted weights three times a week and performed the following routine:clean and presses 2 x 8squats 2 x 12barbell pullovers 2 x 8bench presses 2 x 6good mornings 2 x 8barbell curls 2 x 8Unfortunately, he injured his back doing good mornings, which nearly ruined his career.
COMBATIVES? ...... Don't Tell Me. I Know What That Is! (Part 1)
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Catholic Self Defense
Note: I wrote this essay regarding the development of Tekkenryu jujutsu. However, I think it is applicable for all methods of self defense.
The Rebels Guide to Cultivating Vitality
Many Taoists recluses and Buddhists monks dwelled in mountains and forests to observe, listen, and meditate in order to gather deeper understanding and greater knowledge of nature than is possible when living in the milieu of human society.Often in search of extraordinary longevity and treasures of life, these extraordinary men (and a few women) moved from observation of nature to experimentation and development of the body.
Martial Arts and The Zone
On the occasions you delivered the perfect strike; blocked without the need to think or performed a near flawless kata, did it feel difficult? Or did you get the sense it happened by itself? The 'zone' is a place where athletes describe this sort of experience. Studies suggest its a state of 'effortless merging of action and awareness'.
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