Catching an Arrow in Flight: Real Skill or Ninja Myth?

Midori Tanaka

Japan’s ninja spies were rumored to possess extraordinary powers of mind and body. By some accounts, ninja could jump twenty feet in the air, walk on water, or even disappear.

Last March, Discovery Channel’s Mythbusters decided to put a few of these legendary supernatural skills to the test, with carefully designed scientific experiments. The following images show their results. Continue reading Catching an Arrow in Flight: Real Skill or Ninja Myth?

Watermelon Dim Mak with Steven Seagal

Steven Seagal

Steven Seagal reaches new heights of self-parody, in this scene from his latest movie Shadow Man:

Steven Seagal: So the idea of dim mak, or any kind of internal technique, is not to hurt others but to help others.  Dim mak can be used to heal people, it can be used to kill people.  This is the nature of chi.  Chi can be used in striking for just external, or internal.  If you go to the internal organs you’ll do great damage; external, you can just move them a little. [Applies ji posture to send Student 1 reeling backwards.]  Or, you can go internal. [Strikes watermelon held by Student 2, ruining lunchtime for everyone.]

Continue reading Watermelon Dim Mak with Steven Seagal

Lightsaber Techniques of The New York Jedi

General Sun wants coffee with a double shot of espresso. General Kalius A’dar will take a black iced tea. Cyran Oghma is all set, thanks. “Anything else, you guys?” Master Flynn asks the others assembled. As the founder of the New York Jedi, Master Flynn (no last name) knows mind tricks don’t work in Starbucks. You can’t order telepathically, and you still have to say “venti” when you really mean extra large.

On Tuesdays, Master Flynn and his Jedi posse squeeze into a few corner tables in this busy café before heading to lightsaber training at a dance studio down the street. Sessions can be grueling, starting with meditation and yoga poses before moving on to choreographed swordplay.
Jedi Order Establishes Temple in Lower Manhattan

New York Jedi
Members of the New York Jedi Order

The New York Jedi are a diverse community of choreographers, martial artists, dancers, and Star Wars fanatics, dedicated to mastering the art of lightsaber combat.  In addition to holding weekly classes in sword technique and stage combat fundamentals, these Jedi frequently perform at public events, and on local and national television.

And the weapons? Continue reading Lightsaber Techniques of The New York Jedi

Pigua Tongbei: Swing Your Arms Like a Great White Ape

An Exercise to Build Flexibility and Coordination

This Pigua Tongbei warm-up exercise is an old favorite of Mike Martello—Director of the Wu Tang Association of Belgium—and a new favorite of mine. It will loosen and strengthen your core: waist, back, shoulders and hips.
Continue reading Pigua Tongbei: Swing Your Arms Like a Great White Ape

Jacky Wu Jing, The Tai Chi Master

Wu Jing, The Tai Chi Master
The Tai Chi Master (太極宗師)

Have you ever wondered how the slow and graceful movements of Tai Chi could possibly be applied in a real fight? If so, this expertly choreographed movie will give you some ideas.

In The Tai Chi Master, Chinese action hero Wu Jing (a.k.a. Jacky Wu, Jason Wu) portrays real-life master Yang Lu-Chan, the founder of Yang Style Tai Chi. Here, Wu Jing re-enacts the famous tower sequence from Bruce Lee’s Game of Death. Continue reading Jacky Wu Jing, The Tai Chi Master

How to Bend an “Unbendable Arm”

In his final years, the founder of Aikido was seen to demonstrate many skills that defy the layman’s understanding of physics. Ueshiba sensei reportedly used sen sen no sen and psychic powers to disrupt his opponent’s attacks, threw attackers without touching them, or simply disappeared and reappeared in a safer location.

O-Sensei’s disciples and descendants are unable to repeat his incredible demonstrations. Instead, modern Aikido dojos will introduce ki (life energy) principles to their students with the help of a crude parlor trick: orenaite, or the “unbendable arm”. Continue reading How to Bend an “Unbendable Arm”

Human Weapon: Reviews And Video Highlights

Each episode of HUMAN WEAPON charts an expedition through foreign continents, famous cities, exotic villages, back alleys and lush landscapes with hosts Jason Chambers – mixed-martial-artist and professional fighter – and Bill Duff – former professional football player and wrestler, who learn how each individual location gave birth to its distinct style of combat and study their form of martial art.

This TV series is currently airing on the History Channel. Here are some highlight clips from each episode… Continue reading Human Weapon: Reviews And Video Highlights

Yoga Action Squad Defeats Doctor Badvibes

Aum

Ever since the dawn of time (or when Yoga became Westernized), an elite team of Yogis and Yoginis have protected Yoga throughout Santa Monica. Led by a mysterious Guru, the Yoga Action Squad brings the clarity and focus of yoga to the mean Santa Monica streets. When called on, they respond with a resistance that opens up blockages, creating space for fighting crime! Continue reading Yoga Action Squad Defeats Doctor Badvibes