Modern Martial Arts
Traditionally, martial arts were defined as fighting arts that originated in Asia that had moral codes in which the art’s philosophy was a way of life and that one would train in the physical, mental and spiritual ways of the art. Those that trained in just one of these three ways weren’t considered complete martial artists. Western combative forms like boxing, wrestling and fencing were therefore not considered martial arts.
However, Western scholars and egos are changing the definitional landscape of what a martial art is. It’s becoming recognized that any fighting art, regardless of whether there exists a morality code or the intention behind the art’s use, they’re all considered martial arts. With this mentality change, modern martial arts are surfacing everywhere as practitioners alter traditional arts, add in novel ideas and give the art a new name. By providing a sports tweak, a street-fighting shtick or a military application, the modern martial arts philosophy is becoming more about survival of the fittest whether it’s on the battlefield, street or in the ring.
Martial arts purists contend that many modern martial artists aren’t martial artists but are highly skilled technicians of martial arts techniques.