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Dan Inosanto and Benny Urquidez Look Back at Martial Arts

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The term Martial Arts have become associated with East Asia, but little do people know that it originated in Europe during the middle of the 16th century. Martial arts isn’t just about fighting. It was originally created to be a discipline, a system of focus that had both spiritual and health benefits. As time went on, Martial arts branched into more cultures and evolved into the kind of sport as we know it to be in the present day.

Guro Dan Inosanto and Benny Urquidez can be considered are some among the few martial art experts who have witnessed this evolution first hand. They have had the opportunity to witness the transition of the fighting arts and have decided to share that experience in this video.

According to them, the mid to the 19th century marks the beginning of martial arts as a modern sport. Previously it was thought to be a traditional fighting system. However, when the fighters with unique skills began to pour into the competition, Inosanto and Urquidez realized that they had something completely alien in their hands.

The video can be described as a walk down the memory lane. Both the fighters speak of the glory days; from meeting fighters trained in Muay Thai to training with Bruce Lee, a pioneer in the Martial Arts scene.

Kickboxing was a hybrid of Muay Thai and karate and was later imbibed in the American practice as American Kickboxing(a combination of boxing and karate). It is almost poetic to see so many different art forms coming together and giving birth to something the world has never witnessed before.

As Urquidez explains in the video, during the 1960s, Judo was the most famous form of competitive sport. Changes began to pour in once Bruce Lee entered the scene with his Jeet Kune Do, a style which was somewhat mocked by the westerners. However, Bruce proved his style of martial arts is nothing to be looked down upon and gradually the first seeds of change began to take place.

Another revolution took place when Dan Inosanto himself introduced Muay Thai, a fighting style so alien, that Benny mistook it for the name of the person he was going to fight(1:48).

The 15-minute clip is unique. It doesn’t have any actual fight scenes but to a fighter, this is a goldmine. It’s like watching the entire cast of Avengers: Endgame coming together years after their glory days. If you’re a fan of martial arts, this video is a must watch.

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