This article is about expressing our differences so that there will be no confusion as to what we stand for. One of the problems in today’s martial arts is the lack of understanding that there is a difference between authentic, warrior craft, survival based self protection training. That incorporates the ideal of strengthening every aspect of who we are as sentient beings on this planet, and what I call martial sport.

Martial art is about our entire being.

It includes, but is not limited to, our mental clarity, emotional stability, strength of spirit, and overall physical health.

Martial sport, on the other hand, only expresses the physical part of the martial practices. Usually with only a slight nod towards the higher aspects of our existence.

Martial sport puts its emphasis on pure physical domination of another inside the parameters of certain standardized rules.

When it comes to physical self defense, martial art has no rules. It considers survival, not winning, to be the ultimate goal.

For true martial art to exist there can be no ego. So, the idea of avoidance of the confrontation is a primary ideal in true martial art. Fighting only when it is absolutely imperative for survival.

Martial sport, on the other hand, exists for no other reason than to satisfy the ego. In defeating another in the contest arena one finds a hollow validation of their physical existence. This is usually accomanied by gigantic ego surges. Pride takes over making the practitioner of martail sport think highly of themselves because they were able to defeat another in the contest arena. This, almost always, leads to a huge ego imbalance in the practitioner of martial sport.

At the Mountain Warrior Kung Fu Academy we practice “Martial Art” with an emphasis on the elimination of any egocentric behavior.

One must be very careful to not let the expression of confidence be mistaken for egotistical behavior.

For example: At the Mountain warrior Kung Fu Academy, we believe that we do a better job at the expression of what we have termed as “Martial Art” than any other program in the state of Oregon. This is a statement of confidence based on a great deal of research and observation over the years. We also believe that our realistic fighting philosophy will better prepare a student for a real confrontation in the physical realm than any of the “Martial Sport” programs that are so prolific in todays world. Martial sport disciplines that are pretending to be “Martial Art” are any of the Karate, Kung Fu, Tae Kwon Do or Jujitsu classes out there that push competition as a major component of their training program.

The difference between “Martial Art” and “Martial Sport” can be very difficult for most people to see. This is because “Martial Sport” is always masquerading as “Martial Art”. Why? Because “Martial Sport” has no legitimate claim to all of the things that make “Martial Art” such an extraordinary, life enhancing, deeply meaningful life journey. “Martial Sport” exists only for the next win. The next “tap out”, the next “knock out” or the next victory over another.

“Martial Sport” feeds the ego in all of the ways that the practice of true “Martial Art” works at getting beyond any aspect of egotistical thoughts, words or behavior.

Why the long dialog on this subject? I feel that without expressing our difference in both our approach and the outcome of our “Martial Arts” program. We will get lost in the multitude of other practice disciplines that claim “Martial Art” but are truly only “Martial Sport” in nature.

When you train at Mountain Warrior Kung Fu Academy no emphasis is ever put on competing with another. Our art is trained for realistic confrontation. Not for the sport application of movement in a contest with rules.

If you want to be a good boxer then, by all means, put your energy into the SPORT of boxing. If you wish to become a good grappler then study wrestling or Brazilian jujitsu. If you want to go into the SPORT of MMA then you should absolutely train at an MMA gym.

But, if you wish to learn realistic, real world combatives, as well as improving your nutrition ( for greater overall health), developing greater mental clarity, increase your emotional stability/balance and overall seek to be a true “Martial Artist”. Improving your life in every way while at the same time improving the world around you. Then training at a “Martial Arts” school, such as the Mountain Warrior Kung Fu Academy, is the path for you.

In conclusion I would like to make clear that I am not opposed to the practice of “Martial Sport”. But, the general public does not know the difference between sport and art. The only way that our program will be truly understood and appreciated is to understand that difference.