Martial Arts Classes

Martial arts originated in China over 2 thousand years ago and are at their core different methods of defending yourself and others, an excellent way to get fit and also one of the best methods around for developing strength, muscle, flexibility and confidence. However, the martial arts are so much more than a sum of their parts. Anyone who decides to take up training in Martial arts will find out very quickly that they have chosen not only a new hobby but also a new way of life. The gentsroom have worked hard to find some of the best instructors around who as well as having many years of training under their black belts, are dedicated to ensuring they pass on their knowledge to new students.

How do I know which Martial art to take up?

Here is a brief summary of some of the different styles you may wish to learn.

KARATE: Originated in Okinawa, an island off the Japanese mainland.  Developed by farmers as a way to defend themselves against the Samurai.  Practised now by millions worldwide, with many different styles.  Karate, which literally means empty hand, uses both Kata (form) and Kumite (sparring) for students to test their skills. Famous student: Chuck Norris.

KUNG FU: Originated in mainland China thousands of years ago. Should be described as WU SHU, which means all the arts of China. Many different styles, using both weapons and bare hands. Kung Fu can be highly effective for self defence and some styles employ acrobatic moves which look exciting. Most films with dramatic fight scenes use Kung Fu for their choreography.  Famous students: Bruce Lee,  Jet Li.    

TAE KWON DO:  Originated in Korea. An explosive and exciting Martial Art. Tae Kwon Do is a Korean military martial art derived from the traditional Korean art of Tae Kyon. Students of Tae kwon do are often very successful in competition due to their ability to kick with such speed, power and precision. Famous student: Loren Avedon (King of the Kick boxers, No Retreat No Surrender 2 and 3)

JU-JITSU: Originated in Japan. Ju-jitsu is the unarmed combat style of the Samurai warrior. On the battlefield it was sometimes the case that the Samurai would lose their Katana (sword) and have to rely on their bare hands to defend themselves. A close quarter style which employs locks and throws to good effect. Over 2500 years old, however no-one knows how ju-jitsu started. Popularity for this art increased dramatically in the nineteenth century when the samurai class was abolished allowing the free practise of the art.

AIKIDO: Originated in Japan. Developed by Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969) when he defeated a naval officer who was a fencing instructor. O-Sensei managed to avoid repeated attacks with a bokken until the naval officer collapsed with exhaustion. Aikido is a martial art which is non aggressive and uses the weight, aggression and momentum of the aggressor against them. Practitioners of Aikido learn to throw and unbalance their attacker which makes aikido an ideal art for some smaller people. As Aikido means the way of harmony, there is no competition aspect and practitioners are taught respect and understanding. Famous student: Steven Segal.

THAI BOXING: Thai Boxing or Muay Thai originated in Thailand as an off shoot of the less famous Krabi Krabong. Muay Thai fights take place in a boxing ring, with the hands in boxing gloves. No protection is worn on the feet and Muay Thai often allows the fighters to use their Knees and elbows to attack. This makes Muay Thai one of the most dangerous sports in the world. Unlike other martial arts, Muay Thai fighters will kick with their shins instead of their feet. To ensure their shins are up to the job, bottles and even rolling pins are used to roll up and down the shin to deaden the nerves and make it a better weapon! Despite a reputation for violence Muay Thai finds its roots in Buddhism. The ceremony called the Ram Muay is spiritual in nature and seals the ring off from outside influence, pays homage to the gods and pays respect to loved ones, parents and teachers. Famous student: Tony Jaa (Ong bak)

KICK BOXING: Not a martial art in the broadest sense, more of a competition sport. Many different arts have gone into making Kick boxing. Popular as a way to defend oneself as well as a great way to exercise, Kick Boxing has become incredibly popular over the last 20 years. Competitors will wear protection on their hands, head, shins and feet to prevent serious injury. Kick Boxers can boast great flexibility, good reflexes, stamina and powerful kicks and punches.

JUDO: Originated in Japan. Translated as "The gentle way". Founded in 1882 by Dr. Jigoro Kano, from Ju-jitsu techniques. Judoka are some of the best mat fighters in the world. A Judo bout is scored on the quality and execution of throws. There is no striking in Judo. Once thrown onto the mat, a Judoka will then set about attempting to submit their opponent. Judo has been popular for many years and is now a fully fledged Olympic sport. Famous student: Gene Lebell (Hollywood stunt man and fight choreographer)

Whilst this list is not exhaustative, it does give an insight into what is a fascinating subject. There are of course many more Martial Arts than are listed here. The gentsroom endeavour to offer Martial Art training which suits your needs. If you are keen to learn how to defend yourself, let us know. If you would like to train to become a competitive fighter, give us a call. You get out of Martial Arts what you put in.

The gentsroom will in future offer as many different Martial Arts as possible. It is fully our intention to offer small class sizes to make sure the lessons are more personal and the instructor has time to spend with all the students to make sure they get not only the best instruction available but also the best value for money.

If you would like to learn a rarer or specialised Martial Art, give us a call. We know of lots of styles and lots of Instructors. Special one off appearances at the gentsroom will occasionally come along, so becoming a member will keep you up to date with who, when and what will be appearing.

If you have watched Ultimate Fighting on T.V and thought that you are the next Tito Ortiz, Chuck Liddell or Matt Hughes then mixed martial arts may be for you. We at the gentsroom wish to inspire the next generation of British Mixed Martial artists. MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) fights take place in an octagon shaped cage. The Octagon is 30 feet in diameter and stands 5 feet 6 inches high. Fights are 3 x 5 minute rounds with a 1 minute rest period between rounds. If the fight is a championship bout there are 5 x 5 minute rounds. The fight is won by a knockout, submission or referee’s stoppage. If there is no clear winner then the judges will score the fight.

Viewed as the next generation of combat sport and described as “as real as it gets “MMA is gaining in popularity. If you would like to train in MMA give us a call so we can discuss training. MMA covers stand up fighting such as punches, kicks, elbows and knees which are primarily from Muay Thai. Also in the MMA fighter’s arsenal are throws and takedowns from wrestling. As many fights end up on the ground, the locks and submissions of Ju-jitsu complete the MMA fighter’s necessary training
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