“There is a difference between a fighter and a martial artist. A fighter is training for a purpose: He has a fight. I’m a martial artist. I don’t train for a fight. I train for myself. I’m training all the time. My goal is perfection. But I will never reach perfection.“- Georges St-Pierre 2011
“The exercising of weapons puts away aches, griefs, and diseases, it increases strength, and sharpens the wits. It gives a perfect judgement, it expels melancholy, choleric and evil conceits, it keeps a man in breath, perfect health, and long life. It is unto him that has the perfection thereof, a most friendly and comfortable companion when he is alone, having but only his weapon about him. It puts him out of fear, & in the wars and places of most danger, it makes him bold, hardy and valiant.”- George Silver, 1599
In today’s world skill with weapons, wrestling and pugilism aren’t as important as they once were unless you take a very specific career path, but that’s not to say that anyone can’t benefit from the practice of martial arts. Confidence, fitness, and useful skills for self defence; although UK law regarding weapons is strict, learning how to operate under pressure and how to handle adrenaline along with good foundational footwork and proprioception are useful for all martial artists and self defence enthusiasts.
British martial arts can help you keep healthy, happy, and get you in touch with some of our martial history whether you’re completely new to martial arts or an experienced artist looking for a different set of skills to add to your repertoire. Stage combat choreographers and a number of other professionals have also found the study of old english weapon styles contribute to thier skillset.