Parkour style of martial arts was founded by David Belle in the mid-1990s and focuses on the most efficient movement and training of the body and mind. The originator noted that in a hostile confrontation one might be able to do three things in order to survive: speak, fight, or flee. Most martial arts do not have any set curriculum or training methodology to enhance a participant’s ability to escape, thus Parkour was an answer to this need.
The name “parcours” refers to the obstacle courses used by French military soldiers and was a natural choice of name for the later art, parkour. Known popularly as a jumping art form practiced by young people in Europe, the most important training techniques are jumping, landing, and learning to roll and absorb force while, at the same time, taking advantage of momentum to create spectacular moves; players often engage in 180- or 360-degree rotation turns, known as “turn vaults,” while leaping from or toward objects such as walls or buildings. Vaulting techniques, whereby practitioners dive forward over an obstacle, body horizontal, pushing from the hands and then tucking the legs in and landing safely in a vertical position again, are a staple of the art.
Based on aikido, judo, and karate, Deutscher jujutsu is the main form of jujutsu practiced in Germany. The system emphasizes a number of techniques created for real-life situations, including various kicks, knee strikes, and throws, as well as pressure-point techniques, armed techniques, unarmed techniques, and restraining techniques covering both one-on-one situations and those with multiple opponents. The Jujutsu International Federation (JJIF) is the art form’s international governing body and now has a recognized presence in over 70 countries worldwide.
Kampfringen is a mostly unarmed combat system that employs joint throws, leverage throws, and pain-compliance grips, alongside striking techniques. Although the term is also a generic one for the unarmed combat systems that originated from the Roman Empire and remained popular throughout the Middle Ages, it is also a stand-alone system in its own right.
Varied paths of development
Kampfringen has evolved over the centuries, with later masters all placing emphasis on different aspects of the art. Sword and weapon seizures, and weapon-aided join locks, along with specific stabbing actions aimed at particularly vulnerable areas of an opponent’s armor, were popular during the 15th and 16th centuries.
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