12-15-2009, 12:46 #1
The Influence of Spanish Renaissance Swordsmanship on Filipino Martial Arts
I found this to be an interesting article on the topic. Not surprisingly, there is a good deal of controversy about this in the FMA world. Some FMA stylists readily acknowledge this relationship and influence and some others deny it completely. Personally, I don't care all that much but then again, I'm not Filipino. I can certainly see why it would be a touchy subject depending on the art one is studying or promoting and whether or not one felt if was a slight their national origin.
Originally Posted by John ClementsFor now, more than ever before, being sincere and dedicated is not enough. We must also be right. - Walter Kroll. 1971
12-16-2009, 07:17 #2
Yes, that's highly probable. In the 300 or so years of Spanish presence, Western swordfighting would possibly have been available to at least some Filipinos. Acknowledgment here is mixed, some styles are very open on the influence, others claim that their style has no relation to it whatsoever.
At any rate, I have had the good fortune to meet some practitioners of a system who say that Western Saber Fencing concepts are an integral part of their style.
Last edited by X_plosion; 12-16-2009 at 07:21.
12-16-2009, 08:18 #3
Yep. It is my understanding that Doce Pares, particularly San Miguel Escrima is open about the influence while other groups like Pekiti Tirsia Kali claims none.
I have no way of knowing if that information is true or which is right and which is not or if they both are correct. At the end of the day San Miguel Escrima is not diminished in my eyes if they have taken techniques from the Spanish. It only makes sense to me. These guys conquered us so lets see what they have that we can use. Also, if we learn what they are doing and how to defeat it, perhaps we will win the next time around. So many great arts were blended this way that I see it as a strength.
If PTK is completely without outside influence from the Spanish that is cool with me also.
They are both great arts regardless in my view
I also like the points made about how we Westerners tend to turn to the east to look for martial arts and tend to ignore our own history of martial prowess. European sword fighting was highly advanced and anyone who is interested in sword work would probably do well to look there. I posted some old training manuals on here a while back but it is my understanding that few if any are still teaching this or even understand it to the point where they could teach it. Ironically, those FMA arts who have taken techniques from Spanish swordplay may be the closest link we have left to the original Spanish sword methods.
Last edited by jwinch2; 12-16-2009 at 08:22.For now, more than ever before, being sincere and dedicated is not enough. We must also be right. - Walter Kroll. 1971
01-31-2010, 11:33 #4
Here is another article about foreign influences on FMA.
Originally Posted by FMA PulseFor now, more than ever before, being sincere and dedicated is not enough. We must also be right. - Walter Kroll. 1971
01-31-2010, 15:31 #5
First disclaimer: I have not been an active student of Pekiti Tirsia (which is my only FMA experience) in about ten years, my information is not current, nor representative of the organization.
Second Disclaimer: My knowledge is what my teachers told me, but I believe it because it is logical and consistent with my knowledge of history, geography, and sociology. I have NOT done much research on this subject, as it really not of any great importance to me.
The Spanish influence in Filipino arts depends on the geographical roots of the FMA style in question, as the Spaniards control diminished the further south you go, with the northernmost styles being mostly based on Spanish techniques with some native influence, to nearly zero Spanish influence in the furthest south.
01-31-2010, 16:13 #6
Wiley's text talks about this a bit and concludes a similar pattern but not to the point of "most of their style was Spanish influenced". Even if it was to that point, it would really only be the Espada y Daga techniques that were greatly influenced to my understanding of history. At the end of the day I don't think it is that big of a deal either but it makes for interesting conversation as long as no attaches value statements to things which happens too often unfortunately.
02-02-2010, 10:04 #7
That predilection for attaching value statements is why I put my disclaimers in. I'm passingly familiar with the regional history, I wouldn't use any stronger term than that. And in the final analysis (in my mind) the origin/influences do not matter....the effectiveness of the style is what matters. Generally speaking, Filipino styles are very effective.