Basic Bartitsu Questions

I recently received another inquiry about Bartitsu by email. There are no bad questions. This was the question, which is very common, reasonable thing to ask when deciding where to put your time and effort: Hello David, I’m interested in learning Bartitsu. I’m wondering if you could tell me how effective it is compared to…

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Bowing Isn’t Respect

The mere act of bowing isn’t a show of respect for your instructor if your other behaviours are not equally respectful. Although my classes are fairly informal, that doesn’t mean that respect does not exist. A Low Threshold In my Bartitsu classes (as well as my stage combat classes), we do not have many explicit…

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Bartitsu Video Research

  I frequently shared videos with my Bartitsu students through this blog. Personally, I subscribe to a lot of YouTube channels that share techniques and enjoy learning from their video demonstrations. There aren’t many Bartitsu instructional videos out there, so I know I will have to start making some. But while you wait for my…

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Is Boxing Without Headgear Safer?

Dr. Julian Bailes is a neurosurgeon and a founding member of the Brain Injury Research Institute in Pennsylvania. This year, the International Boxing Association, or AIBA, interviewed him on the topic of concussions and brain injuries in boxing, as it relates to wearing protective headgear. Boxing is one of the four component martial arts of…

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Holmes and the First Private Detective

Bartitsu owes a lot to the stories about Sherlock Holmes written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Holmes is described as practicing Bartitsu, and makes use of that combat skill in several confrontations. The popularity of the series spread the fame of Bartitsu at the time, but more important is that their longevity was the only…

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Protect Yourself in a Riot

What do you do if caught in a tightly packed group of people, some of whom become violent? You may watch the news and see a group of people gathered in a festival who are attacked from the outside, such as the tragedy in Nice on Bastille Day. You may be a peaceful protester who…

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Canne de Combat Video

La Canne de Combat is French for “combat cane” and is distinct from Bartitsu’s walking stick self-defense. La Canne Francaise (“French cane”) was a branch of savate, and remains a part of some savate schools. Pierre Vigny brought some of the aspects of La Canne to Bartitsu, with his own interpretations and modifications for the…

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Hit the Homunculus

I love taking workshops with experts who have a lot of experience like Marco Quarta. The value of their coaching is immense, but I get even more from their explanations, their unique perspectives and the insights about why we choose certain movements. Maestro Quarta is an expert in Italian martial arts, especially traditional and modern…

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Bartitsu Discussion Points

Here’s a selection of items of note from the Bartitsu Society of late. Salford Scuttlers Check out this two-part video on the Scuttlers problem of 1890s Manchester: This is exactly the sort of street violence that Bartitsu was intended to counter. Comparing Vigny and Barton-Wright I highly recommend this recent article by Tony Wolf on…

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Shillelagh or Irish Stick Fighting

St. Patrick’s Day was this week, so let’s celebrate the shillelagh, or blackthorn walking stick and its fighting style. As Jon Mills explained in his post, the general Irish term for stick fighting is Bataireacht. The shillelagh itself is a single piece of blackthorn or oak about three feet long. Longer sticks were called wattles…

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Martial Intent in Bartitsu

At our rank exams, we evaluate students by how they demonstrate certain techniques alone and against a partner, as well as their use in sparring. Many students are most nervous about the competitive aspect and not being able to plan exactly what will happen in the sparring component. However, I see more students get reduced…

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Calligraphy and Martial Arts

This week, I’m jotting down some rumination on the connection between writing and martial arts, so I don’t have a thesis or a lesson to teach, but the reader can follow my musing toward their own meditation on the topic. I’m partially inspired by Major Wes who sent me a copy of the book on…

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Bartitsu Highlights 2015

It’s both emotionally satisfying and productive to summarize the previous year and take stock. In this blog, it can also have a benefit to the reader to gather the links and events from the previous year in one place. So, I hope this retrospective benefits you as much as compiling it benefits me. Articles In…

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Mastering Savate

An excellent series of videos — Mastering Savate by Professor Salem Assli and Panther Production — has been uploaded to YouTube from VHS instructional tapes. Here is part 2 of the series which defines many of the core kicks and concepts: If you want your kicks to improve, take the time to review these videos: Volume 1:…

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This Week in Video: London Brawling

We just came across this delightful video which is so fitting, since we have one of our super fun Umbrella Self-Defence workshops this Sunday October 11th, 1pm – 5pm. Come and learn what an awesome self-defence tool your brolly is! This Week on Duello.TV It’s the beginning of a new month of curriculum at Academie…

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