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Bullshido

From The Martial Arts Encyclopedia

Edited By Rock Ape

Bullshido, similar to McDojo is a state of fraud and deception in the Martial Arts. The root of the word comes from Bushido, the Samurai code of honor. Bullshido is essentially the antithesis of Bushido, in which a Martial Artist demonstrates little to no honor in their training, conduct, or business dealings.


Coined by "Phrost" the founder and site director for [1], the play on words reflects the growing divide within the Martial Arts community between those who train to learn how to fight, and those who train to pretend they know how to fight, or under the assumption that they can learn how to fight on the street without ever having "fought" in the Dojo.


As such, Bullshido also consists of impractical training methods if they are used out of the contexts for which they were originally intended. For example, board breaking and Kata/Forms; which have value as tests of power and confidence in the case of the former, and as a 'library' of techniques handed down in the case of the latter. However, when these become the focus of one's Martial Arts training, as opposed to actually learning how to implement the techniques in said forms, in a real situation through full contact, non-stop sparring, it is considered Bullshido. (Point Sparring as a sport is fine, as a training method to prepare one for a real fight it is considered Bullshido.)


Often discounted by many "Traditional" martial arts instructors and students who have no sincere desire to actually get hit in their quest to be a Martial Arts master, a lack of full contact, limited rules sparring or competition also has a dangerous drawback: an unrealistic assessment of one's personal skills which can lead to an overestimation of them in a dangerous situation.


For example: Consider a 16 year old girl who has "earned" her black belt after a dubiously short two or three years through diligent practice of forms and learning a foriegn alphabet. When faced with a larger male attacker, alone in a parking lot, instead of running or screaming for help, might decide to rely on her "Black Belt expertise" to subdue the man who outweighs her by up to 100 lbs, using "techniques" she learned through unrealistic drills and forms/kata practice. Such a choice is likely to result with the girl being further victimized if not severely beaten, raped, or murdered.


However, had said girl trained realistically, by competing with less restrictive rules (as real fights do not stop when you score a "point") against larger opponents in the Dojo, she might have chosen to run instead, having a more realistic understanding of her limitations.


Obviously this is all allegorical. But it is still a consequence of having an unrealistic assessment (or none at all) of one's martial skills due to an unwillingness to actually "fight" in the course of seeking to become proficient at the martial arts.


Additionally, such concepts as "Martial Arts are not for fighting" are considered Bullshido as well. In many cases they are the shields behind which McDojos that negligently teach poor or impractical skills, seek to hide when questioned on their fighting prowess. Often quoted is a line from The Karate Kid in which Daniel LaRusso answers Mr. Miyagi's question on the subject of the purpose of training in the Martial Arts as; "So I don't have to fight".


Unfortunately, many of the concepts and ideas from this movie have been used to spawn hundreds of McDojos across the country, espousing the same rubbish. The truth is that Martial Arts are the arts of War. (See the definition of "Martial"). Learning how to avoid fights can be done in a psychology course, or through simple common sense in avoiding high-risk areas. You do not practice punching and kicking, and other ways to injure another person, as a means to avoid doing so. This would be the same as learning how to operate a barbeque grill in order to protect cows from being eaten.

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