Discussion in 'General' started by robertlk808, Sep 12, 2007.
GM Floro Villabrille's wife passed away recently - April 25, 2007.
The Hawaii Martial Arts International Society have some Bios
Grandmaster Greg Lontayao Jr.
Grandmaster Graciano Lontayao Jr. was born on May 2, 1937. His journey into martial arts was influenced by his father, Graciano Lontayao Sr., who was born in 1907 on a small Visayas island paradise named Siquijor in the Philippines. The Spanish called it "Isla del Fuego", the Island of Fire. The Europeans traveled there to write about the mangukukulam or healers and the sorcery and healing powers they possessed. The people of Siquijor enjoy music and Sayau (dance). Graciano Sr., an Escrimador master, once told a story about when he was a young boy he would play the sticks and spar with friends and how on one certain night on a day like Good Friday people stay awake from midnight until dawn. Graciano Sr.'s goal was to move to the states to California, to go to school, but his destiny changed and in 1920 he settled in Hawaii and started his family.
When he was a boy, Graciano Lontayao Jr. was once warned by his father, "If you come home crying, I'll beat you myself." So in 1951, Graciano Jr., at the age of 14, joined the judo class at the Ewa Gym in Ewa, Hawaii, under Sensei Watanabe, Sensei Abe, Sensei Ventura, Sensei Friatas and Sensei Ben Palacio. He also studied Aikido under Sensei Sugai and Sensei Yoko. Having been born and raised in Ewa, Hawaii, he was locally accepted by many martial arts instructors who came from all nationalities. The Ewa plantation villages was where many people from overseas resided and brought with them their different martial arts skills. Learning martial arts in the 1950's wasn't easy. The art was more disciplined and intense. Questions and complaints were considered a sign of weakness. During training and sparring there were often bones broken.
In one village, called Banana Camp, Graciano Jr. began learning his boxing skills from instructor Ben Apostadairo, Richard Choi, Frank Lagon and Art Respicio. During his teenage years, he had to keep up his studies in school in order to continue his martial arts training and to play sports. In his senior year of high school, he led the Waipahu High School basketball team to the championship and became an All Star player.
He studied Kempo Karate at CHA-3 under Professor Marino Tiwanek and Kaji-Kumi Karate under Master Raymond Tobosa. Master Tobosa and Sensei Lontayao attended a seminar by Master Mas Oyama from Japan of Kyu Shin Kai Karate in Jodo Mission of Hawaii. After studying under Master Tobosa for nine years, he was promoted to Sensei 5th degree Black Belt in 1963. Grandmaster Fred Lara, Master of Internal Poison hand system and Red Belt Highest Rank from Grandmaster William K.S. Chow, took him in as his student where he began to learn more and became Sensei (Rokudan) 6th degree Black Belt in Shiki Shin Funi Association of Hawaii.
At about the same time, Sensei Lontayao started a school in the San Francisco area. In 1964 he entered the Black Belt Kumite and matched up with Dan Inosantos, losing the match by one point. This tournament was Ed Parker's first International Karate Championship, where many witnessed Professor Ben Largusa, the current Grandmaster of Kali, and the legendary Bruce Lee's Jeet Kune Do demonstration. On that day Sensei Greg Lontayao was introduced to Kali.
In 1967 Sensei Greg Lontayao met then advisor, Grandmaster Ming Lum, who later introduced him to Kung-fu. He began lessons in White Crane under Sifu Quinton Fong and Sifu Ma in San Francisco's China Town. He also traveled to Hong Kong and, on the recommendation of Grandmaster Ming Lum, met Kung-fu Grandmaster Kwock.
In 1972 Sensei Lontayao joined together with then Professor Ben Largusa and opened the first commercial school of Kali in South San Francisco, teaching the late Grandmaster Floro Villabrille/Largusa legendary Kali system. Under the same roof, Sensei Lontayao started the Lontayao Martial Arts Schools teaching Shiki Shin Funi and learning Kali. He was chosen by Professor Ben Largusa to be one of the original 12 disciples of Kali. Professor Lontayao was promoted on February 18, 1978, to Guro Lakang Tolo 3rd step; on February 18, 1980 to Lakang Lima 5th step; on February 18, 1983 to Lakang Onom 6th step; on October 1, 1984, to Lakang Pito 7th step and, eventually on February 18, 1988, to Lakang Walo 8th step. Then on August 14, 1994, he was promoted to the highest-ranking professor in the Villabrille/Largusa Kali system, Lakang Polo 10th step.
Professor Greg Lontayao, now 64, lives in Ewa where he grew up. After his long journey through life, raising a family with, now deceased, Loretta Sojot Lontayao, and with all six of his children having black belts in martial arts, he has truly accomplished his goals and completed the external portion of martial arts. He is still actively involved and is still perpetuating and preserving the tradition, culture and discipline of martial arts the way he learned it for the benefit of his generation and the generations to come.
A nice little big of recognition
I agree that we need to get others more familiar with the FMA that Hawaii has to offer. This knowledge has endured for decades and now emerges with a whole new generation of FMA players in Hawaii. Again we must acknowledge how much effort 'Robertlk808' has put into exposing Hawaii FMA in a positive way.I for one appreciates the info he has posted here on the forums. Mahalo & Aloha
Amen. Thank you Robert for all of your contributions!
It's all for the art, I just I have enough time to get some training in with everyone! I'm even trying to contact the people who originally posted some of the source material so then can come share their knowledge here.
An interesting piece.. not necessarily about FMA but about Boxing and Filipino's in Hawaii, also take note of the last name of the Judoka near the end of the paragraph. MChief, StixMaster do you think there is any relation?
Modern arnis being taught in Kaunakakai!
New Martial Arts Class on Molokai
Modern arnis being taught in Kaunakakai.
By Léo Azambuja
One of the most underground types of martial arts in the United States is being taught right here on Molokai. The practice known as modern arnis is being taught by instructor Mark Crumpton. He recently moved from Los Angeles, and has started teaching a class at Home Pumehana.
Modern arnis is mostly known to be a martial arts practice that originated in the Philippines, and to be practiced with sticks. But this is just part of the story. “Most people don’t understand that modern arnis is a blade fight,” Crumpton said. “But it is actually a blade art.”
The martial art was created by Filipino Grandmaster Remy Presas. “It’s a combination of balintawak, arnis, karate, judo and wing tzun,” Crumpton said. Presas learned all those martial arts from different masters in the Philippines and started teaching them on a linear format, according to Crumpton.
But when modern arnis arrived in the United States, Presas switched the blades to sticks using similar moves. “Teaching the blade was so violent,” Crumpton said. “So they used sticks in place of blades.”
Over time, the martial art evolved and gained popularity as a stick martial art. “A lot of people forgot it was a blade art,” Crumpton said. Today, he said there are not many people training with the blades. Crumpton is one of the very few.
Although the stick and the blade portions of modern arnis are similar, there are some differences. “When you train with the stick you hit the hand, we hit the arm,” Crumpton said. “When you train with the blade you train closer.” Blade orientation also makes part of the differences between the two modern arnis variations.
Presas passed away in 2001. But not before handing over his knowledge to Bram Frank, who also became a modern arnis grandmaster. Crumpton was still training Brazilian jiu-jitsu in Los Angeles when he met Frank. “I’m pretty comfortable with my ground skills,” Crumpton said. “But I realized I had to have some stand up skills.”
After being introduced to modern arnis by Frank, Crumpton was hooked on it. “This made a lot of sense to me,” Crumpton said. It has been six years now, and three years since he got his license to teach modern arnis.
Proving modern arnis is not just a fighting style, but an art in itself, Crumpton said the two main factors in the martial art are flow and counter for counter.
“Everything is about the flow,” Crumpton said. “The flow is how the body moves naturally.”
Countering moves is equally important in modern arnis. “If I throw a punch and you counter, and I don’t know how to respond then I’m done,” Crumpton said. “I need to learn how to counter from here.”
But for those who think the modern arnis is complicated, there is hope. “It’s all about keeping it simple,” Crumpton said. “We can have fun doing it.”
Before moving to Molokai, Crumpton used to teach modern arnis in Hermosa Beach, Los Angeles. Some of the surrounding gyms were run by some of the biggest legends in martial arts. But he is still a humble person. “I come from a place of respect and humility,” he said.
Crumpton heard there are a lot of Filipinos who are experts in modern arnis on Molokai. “Most of the guys are teaching in their backyard,” he said. “It’s really secretive.” He acknowledged there are probably martial artists on Molokai more experienced than him. He says he is excited to train and learn with others an hopes to meet other martial artists on Molokai. “I know there are some good teachers on this island,” Crumpton said.
The versatile Crumpton has been training for over 20 years in several styles of martial arts, including tang soo do, tae kwon do, wing tzun and Brazilian jiu-jitsu. His teacher in this last art was Carlson Gracie Jr., son of the late Carlson Gracie Sr., who many in the jiu-jitsu community say was the best teacher the sport ever had.
Anyone who is skeptical or afraid about practicing modern arnis should give it a try. “I make a serious subject fun,” Crumpton said. The first class is free. He said he is still trying to figure out a fair price, but it won’t be expensive.
The outgoing instructor with movie-star looks is already in love with Molokai. And it doesn’t look like it’s a passing thing. Crumpton moved here to be with his girlfriend, a local girl with whom he has maintained a long-distance relationship for a year. “I’m not going anywhere,” he said. “I’m here to stay.”
Classes are held at Home Pumehana, at the Hale Maha`olu Senior Center, on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 5-7 p.m., and on Saturdays from 12-3 p.m. For more information please contact Crumpton at 808-336-0936.
I posted a piece on the Den Forum. Please check it out.
Sorry Wrong forum. Its posted in General Martial Arts Discussion. Its about my Grandfather Elias (Battling Bolo) Cantere, Hawaii Welter Weight Champion. He fought in the 20's and 30's.
Try look at YouTube.com, search for Malaya Eskrima in Hawaii Kai. We now also have a branch in the Philly area.
Aloha and Mabuhay!
Elias (Battling Bolo) is my Grandfather. I have posted some info on the General Martial Arts Discussion Forum. I will share about the above post later. Theres a lot to be said. I have articles and pictures from the days my Grandfather fought.
This is great more and more info about FMA in Hawaii. Robert again thanks for your research, as you are finding out there is a lot of knowledge of 'martial arts' in Hawaii . Not just a vacation spot anymore.
Hey Robert great links to the video clips of the 'Showdown' Thanks Uso. Nice demos of Hawaii FMA. Its good to see folks get together, share and grow. Good job MasterChief and Brandon living the Derobio Creed. Much Mahalos and Aloha
The Tobosa style has some similarity to Villabrille's style doesn't it ? mAYBE SOMEONE COULD HELP ENLIGHTEN us more about this style. Mahalo & Aloha
As far as similarites to the Villabrille system, Im not sure. I have had minimal exposure to Villabrille system and what I have been exposed to is through Mana Nunez (I may have the last name spelled incorrectly.) Mana is a great guy, who works hard, I believe the guy has like 4 or 5 jobs, talk about work ethic! and still has time for daily practice of Kempo and Eskrima. While hanging out at a BBQ with friends Mana shared an album full of pictures, some of his certificicates of rank were share signed by Floro Villabrille as well, pretty neat.
Professor Lee Manibog and Head Instructor of Tobosa Escrima Donald Mendoza are great instructors as well, they refer to the system as being close to Serrada. Last friday I was able to meet other intrsuctors and students from Tobosa and Bahala Na. Good people, good fun!
Yes, it would be awesome to get some practitioners from the other system to post here too!
By the way Eddie Deutsche http://www.eddydeutsche.com/ is going to be in town for a little while for personal business. Eddie trained under Sonny Umpad, I met Eddie and Maija when I went to LA to fight at the Dog Brother gathering. Hopefully I will have some time to train with Eddie.
There was another tournament this weekend host by some Kajukenbo schools but they also hosted a Escrima competition I believe most of the local schools were there. Pedoy, Del Mar, Tobosa, HFMA, Ola'a-Nalo and even some Kajukenbo players participated in the competition. It was pretty darn cool!
SHOWDOWN ! This weekend in Hawaii on Oahu in Waipahu on the Leeward side of the island ! Aloha
Unfortunately I just missed an interview done on a local TV station with Mike Del Mar. It aired at 0630 this morning.
Escrima - Pacific Island Showdown: Del Mar School OAHU 10/16/2007 6:30:00 AM Demos and interview of Mike Del Mar School of Escrima - A Filipino Martial Arts Sports
Hopefully it will air again.
Batikan Raymond Tobosa and his brother trained with Villabrille. That could be what you are referring to?
Separate names with a comma.