Thursday, 19 June 2008

The Most Influential Martial Artists Ever

Bruce Lee, Jigoro Kano, Anko Itosu, Morihei Ueshiba. These are just a few names of martial artists that have influenced hundreds and thousands of people through there training. But who is the most influential ever to exist. Who paved the way to how we train today.

Bushi Matsumura is seen by some to be the greatest karate fighter of all time. Without him karate would not have been passed down to Anko Itosu, one of the men responsible in teaching Gichen Funakoshi who then introduced karate to the rest of the world via Japan. Maybe karate would have found another route to the world if there was none of the above three, who knows. This however is what happened and certainly should cement there reputations as great and influential martial arts masters.

Everyone in the martial arts world was stunned back in the 1990’s when Royce Gracie shocked the world by beating nearly all comers with his jiu jitsu techniques. He most surly started the “grappling era”. Grappling was well known before the early UFC but he put it on the map so to speak. A truly influential person. But someone taught him, which was Helio Gracie and someone taught the Gracie’s which was Maeda. You could even say that Jigoro Kano, the person who created the Judo system and from his Kodakan came Maeda, was the man responsible for creating the grappling era. After all, without him, Maeda would not have learnt Judo who passed it on to the Gracie’s and Royce would not have competed in the UFC. There may never have even been a UFC.

The Ancient Greeks created pankration. It is believed that from them, pankration travelled to India via Alexander the Greats conquests. The Indians where then taught the Greeks system of fighting, which travelled to the Shaolin Temple and became known as kung fu and kung fu is said to be the father of all martial arts. Maybe the creators of pankration hold the right as the most influential martial artists of all time.

Bruce Lee has inspired millions. It’s a fact. He has given many people inspiration to become not just great martial artists but great people. For this reason surly he will be known as one of the most influential.

The fact is, it’s impossible to point out the most influential martial artists because there has been so many over time. Many people have proven themselves as great. The common link which they all share however is that they all believe in there own abilities and this should make them great alone regardless of there technical abilities. This could be the reason they inspire and influence so many, and why they shall continue to do so.


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Chris | Martial Development said...

Does Genghis Khan belong on this list?

MARKS said...

I dont see why not

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