Should Modern Arnis be Preserved, or Evolved?

Discussion in 'Modern Arnis' started by arnisador, Nov 26, 2005.

  1. arnisador

    arnisador Active Member

    The Professor left us a lot of material in the art that he created and promoted. That raises the question...should the art be evolved, or should it be preserved as the Professor left it to us? It was certainly continually evolving in the Professor's lifetime, and the name 'modern' would seem to imply that it should remain current and useful...yet, with single and double stick, some knife and sword, shotokan katas, and the small circle form of jujutsu, there's enough material in there for anyone!

    The idea of preserving the Professor's teachings seems respectful to me, and if the art continues to evolve then perhaps in several generations it'll fail to resemble his art at all. That seems a shame. Yet, the idea of simply freezing it as is doesn't seem in line with the Professor's philosophy.

    What's the right thing to do?
  2. Sheldon Bedell

    Sheldon Bedell New Member

    Having never had the experience of meeting the man I can only go by what I have been told and read about him, That being said I think he would want the core of marteial to remain the same while allowing his students and future generations to keep the system evolving . He seemed to make and allow small changes while he was alive (or am I wrong about this)
  3. Cruentus

    Cruentus Tactician

    I say do both. I am glad that people are out there preserving certain things so that I don't feel that I have too, and I can focus on what I want. I don't have to worry about teaching the system either, as there are plenty doing that. I am also glad to see when people are evolving things and making it there own.

    So, I think that both is good.

  4. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise Senior Member Supporting Member

    Preserve but also progress. Do not be stagnant! I do not
    feel that it would be in line with his teachings to just preserve
    what he taught and not incorporate anything new. No to
    follow his path one would have to keep progressing and
    challenging yourself to find new and innovative ways to
    work into your Modern Arnis.

    Brian R. VanCise
  5. arnisador

    arnisador Active Member

    Yes, not only did he make changes to the system--additions and changes of emphasis--but he encouraged great freedom of expression in his students, who came from many backgrounds.

    I hate to see anything lost, and the academic in me wants to preserve the past--yet, it seems clear to me that further development of the art is essential.
  6. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Member

    My current guro is from Modern Arnis. He tends to describe GM Presas' approach as a way of cataloging and preserving styles of FMA. So when he sees something in my Doce Pares/Inosanto practice that he hasn't seen before, he tries to document it in his practice.

    That being the case, I'd guess that his approach to MA is more preservative than evolutionary. I think the preservation is a high priority for him. And I can certainly respect that.

  7. Blotan Hunka

    Blotan Hunka Guest

    I dont wear traditional clothes or have Anting Anting tattooed on me, so why should we worry about preserving techniques?

    Add what works and take away what does not.
  8. KrissOfSweden

    KrissOfSweden Member

    I think it's kind of sad that you should take away certain techniques just because it is not what "works" today..I believe that there most be away to keep the core of the art and stil evolve it. It maybe take some time to figure out how it's going to be integrated in the art, but i think it should take the time...
  9. JPR

    JPR New Member

    These goals are not necessarily exclusive. You just have to be organized as to how you present the material.

    I have an instructor that does a good job of this in Jun Fan / JKD. He will tell you, “now this is what was taught originally”, or “this was not a part of the original Jun Fan, but was added later from shoot wrestling (or what ever).”

    This way, your art adapts without loosing its core.

  10. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Member

    I think it's a question of personal priority. Are you more interested in the style? Or in yourself? And I don't mean that to be a loaded question. I'd say personally that I'm more self-interested. In other words, the style is important in so far that it helps me organize my work and provides me with tools. Beyond that, I'm not too worried about it.

    That doesn't make me much of a loyalist. But there you have it.

  11. Sheldon Bedell

    Sheldon Bedell New Member

    If you dont keep and use what has been taught befor what is there to teach except your own imagination.
    I'm not saying every little thing should be taught by everyone but then again why not These things are what made the art what it is today. Go forward and add to them but dont just ignor that they exsisted. They may not be your favorite thing to do and you may not be good at a certian thing but that dosen't mean your student wont be
  12. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Member

    True. But I don't really view my role as teacher to be repository of everything I experienced in FMA. I see my role as passing on what I view as "best practices." I can't convey everything. So I convey what I consider the most useful. Granted it's the most useful to me. But I still think that's a better use of our training time than my trying to share an encyclopediac knowledge of the style.

  13. KrissOfSweden

    KrissOfSweden Member

    I believe as a instructor in any style you should be versatile and not just have the things that is the right for them(me), because everyone is diffrent, some people can't do what i can do and i can't do some things that other people can do. So that is my task as an instructor to give my student the knowledge to do what fits them the best. Of course there will allways be techniques that will lie close the heart, but that doesn't mean that it will be my students favorit techniuques...This is how I see the instructor roll...
  14. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Member

    That approach does, of course, involve you teaching things that you're not great at. Just something to think about.

  15. lilla_tigern

    lilla_tigern New Member

    It is the same approach of training my old instructor had:p This kind of teaching make complete martial artist when they will train at things the usually won't because they don't like them.

    SO TRAIN HARD AT EVERYTHING, that might not be fun every time but fore me it is funny:p It's like a challenge=)
  16. KrissOfSweden

    KrissOfSweden Member

    Yes that's true, you can't be great at everything, but you can be good at the things your bad at and great with things you like. We are always going to have prefrence of things, but i don't want to neglect the things I am not so good at, if I am bad at something i really try to work on these things to be a better practioner and I hope that my student to will be verstile, they may not use everything I tought them but they know it and they can "take it out" when they need to.
  17. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Member

    That's fair enough. I'm not advocating paring down your teachings to solely the things you excel at. At the same time, I don't feel compelled to pass down the anyos I had to learn, for example, because I don't think that they're an optimal teaching method. On the one hand, I can respect the drive to preserve a style, particularly for the benefit of a student whose strengths may differ from your own. On the other, I maintain that part of the role of a teacher is to make informed decisions about the best way to convey what he knows to the next generation.

  18. kuàizi

    kuàizi New Member

    My first time to post

    What I think about preserving modern arnis is hard to do. If we say preserve, it's like putting a caged book and rarely to be open or read. If indeed the art will be preserved, what will happen to the students of Prof. Remy Presas? It should not be preserved.

    Evolution. Since we all know that there are great similarities to Balintawak, it should continue to refine the and look for more things to gain either be in scientific way or traditional.

    In addition, I wouldn't like to be called by other system that my art is no longer practiced because it is PRESERVED. Thanks.

    Peace out.
  19. Rich Parsons

    Rich Parsons Member


    My Plans are to Preserve what I was taught. Teach what I was taught in that process.

    I also will investigate, or handle new situations as they arise or thought of.

    If it is preservation I would most likely say, I remember learning this from Remy or Jim or Jeff or Joe. If it something I put together from basics or singles, I would say this is the single that could be modified to handle this here. And I would present it as such. If for some reason I am able to execute a techinique and reproduce it for myself and then teach it, I will explain what my influences were, and how they effected what is being taught. I would always try to present it in as truthful a manner as possible so the student would know where it came from including myself. This does not mean that someone else could not have learned elsewhere or been taught it elsewhere either.

    Just my random thoughts here on this subject this afternoon.
  20. arnisador

    arnisador Active Member

    I agree. On the other hand, Im glad that someone is preserving iaido, or naginatado, event though they're now impractical. I have mixed feelings on the matter!

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