Martial Arts Myths & Misconceptions
All Martial Arts Are Ancient
By Jonathan Maberry
Not even close. Though there are indeed ancient arts, such as Varmannie
(5000-plus years), kung-fu (3000 years), jujutsu and daito-ryu (1000
years), and so on, there are new martial arts springing up all the time.
Karate, as we know it, is less than a century old, having been introduced
in new forms to Japan by Okinawan masters who practiced versions of karate-jutsu
that were more deliberately combative. Judo was born in 1882 and Aikido
in 1935 (although both were derived from older forms of jujutsu). Taekwondo
and Hapkido were introduced in the 1940s and ‘50s, though in part
they were based on much older systems (some would argue that both were
inspired by Japanese forms of karate taught in Korea by the occupying
Japanese). Jeet Kune Do was created in the late 1960s by Bruce Lee. American
Kenpo was developed in the latter part of the 20th century (but again
inspired by older systems).
Many of today’s most popular martial arts, such as Krav Maga and
Sambo, are also blends of older systems. Also, there are many hundreds
of amalgam styles (often called “modern” or “eclectic”)
that are blends of skills from different arts, many of them founded in
the last quarter of the 20th Century.
Although new arts continue to appear, it would be nearly impossible
to point to any martial art that is not based at least in part on a much
older system or systems.
About the Author:
Jonathan Maberry is the award-winning author of over 700 articles as
well as several books, including Ultimate Jujutsu Principles and Practices
and The Martial Arts Student Logbook. He holds an 8th degree black belt
in jujutsu and a 5th dan in Hapkido, is a member of the Martial Arts
Hall of Fame, and is co-founder of the COP-Safe program. Visit his website