4 Mar 2009

Animal magic

Animals! Every gym has one individual who fights like an animal, looks like one and heck even smells like one. But seriously, the use of animals as a metaphor or training aid in martial arts goes way back to the origins in India and China. Off the top of my head, animal associations in classical martial arts include tiger, crane, snake, dragon, mantis, monkey and loads of others.
BJJ is no different. Animals are used to name some techniques and many instructors and fighters are given animal nick names. But the best use of animal imagery has to be the 'Animal Workout' as seen on the video below:

My BJJ instructor Nick has been doing a lot of this at the Roger Gracie Academy so he's got us all doing it at Mill Hill too. It's fun, fairly easy to do, and a pretty good work out as well. I can imagine a really long set of each would be pretty punishing, thankfully Nick keeps it to just one set per length of mat.
Thanks to JJ pal Dave who pointed out that our very own British Quarterstaff Association are teaching their techniques through the use of animal imagery. There is the fox, stag, boar, cat, bear and hawk. All very British. I reckon a good old 'stag' style quarterstaffer would teach a pesky White Crane Kungfu stylist a thing or two about fighting. Yeah!

About the Author


Author & Artist

Meerkatsu is the artist name for BJJ black belt Seymour Yang.



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